Statius quotes

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Birthdate: 45 AC
Date of death: 96 AC

Publius Papinius Statius was a Roman poet of the 1st century AD. His surviving Latin poetry includes an epic in twelve books, the Thebaid; a collection of occasional poetry, the Silvae; and an unfinished epic, the Achilleid. He is also known for his appearance as a guide in the Purgatory section of Dante's epic poem, the Divine Comedy.




„Hear oh hear, if my prayer be worthy and such as you yourself might whisper to my frenzy. Those I begot (no matter in what bed) did not try to guide me, bereft of sight and sceptre, or sway my grieving with words. Nay behold (ah agony!), in their pride, kings this while by my calamity, they even mock my darkness, impatient of their father's groans. Even to them am I unclean? And does the sire of the gods see it and do naught? Do you at least, my rightful champion, come hither and range all my progeny for punishment. Put on your head this gore-soaked diadem that I tore off with my bloody nails. Spurred by a father's prayers, go against the brothers, go between them, let steel make partnership of blood fly asunder. Queen of Tartarus' pit, grant the wickedness I would fain see.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Exaudi, si digna precor quaeque ipsa furenti
subiceres. orbum visu regnisque carentem
non regere aut dictis maerentem flectere adorti,
quos genui quocumque toro; quin ecce superbi
—pro dolor!—et nostro jamdudum funere reges
insultant tenebris gemitusque odere paternos.
hisne etiam funestus ego? et videt ista deorum
ignavus genitor? tu saltem debita vindex
huc ades et totos in poenam ordire nepotes.
indue quod madidum tabo diadema cruentis
unguibus abripui, votisque instincta paternis
i media in fratres, generis consortia ferro
dissiliant. da, Tartarei regina barathri,
quod cupiam vidisse nefas.
Source: Thebaid, Book I, Line 73

„While spear in hand he repels the hounds agape to rend him.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Tela manu, reicitque canes in vulnus hiantes.
Source: Thebaid, Book IV, Line 574 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„The wood that crowns the peak of Nesis set fast in ocean.“

—  Statius, Silvae

i, line 148 (tr. J. H. Mozley)
Silvae, Book III
Original: (la) Silvaque quae fixam pelago Nesida coronat.

„A Nemean steed in terror of the fight bears the hero from the citadel of Pallas, and fills the fields with the huge flying shadow, and the long trail of dust rises upon the plain.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Illum Palladia sonipes Nemeaeus ab arce
devehit arma pavens umbraque inmane volanti
implet agros longoque attollit pulvere campum.
Source: Thebaid, Book IV, Line 136 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„…glad applause and the heaven-flung shout of the populace.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Laetifici plausus missusque ad sidera vulgi
Source: Thebaid, Book XII, Line 521 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„The claw tips are tamed with gold.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Auro mansueverat ungues.
Source: Thebaid, Book VI, Line 724. Thomas Gray's translation: "And calm'd the terrors of his claws in gold".

„"The thunderbolt, ay, where the thunderbolt?" Apollo laments.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Fulmen, io ubi fulmen?'
ait. gemit auctor Apollo.
Original: (la) Fulmen, io ubi fulmen?' ait. gemit auctor Apollo.
Source: Thebaid, Book X, Line 889 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„Too little mindful of your folk.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Nimiumque oblite tuorum.
Source: Thebaid, Book VII, Line 547

„Spying a young plane tree with long stem and countless branches and summit aspiring to heaven.“

—  Statius, Silvae

iii, line 39 (tr. J. H. Mozley)
Silvae, Book II
Original: (la) Primaevam visu platanum, cui longa propago
innumeraeque manus et iturus in aethera vertex.

„All soil is human birthright.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Variant translation: The whole world is a man's birthplace.
Original: (la) Omne homini natale solum.
Source: Thebaid, Book VIII, Line 320 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

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„Whoever worships the gods in good faith, loves their priests too.“

—  Statius, Silvae

Preface, line 10
Silvae, Book V
Original: (la) Qui bona fide deos colit amat et sacerdotes.

„You are the grandson of the sky and sea.“

—  Statius, book Achilleid

Original: (la) Tu caeli pelagique nepos.
Source: Achilleid, Book I, Line 869; Ulysses to Achilles.

„Fear (in times of doubt the worst of prophets) revolves many things.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Plurima versat,
pessimus in dubiis augur, timor.
Source: Thebaid, Book III, Line 5

„Whence first arose among unhappy mortals throughout the world that sickly craving for the future? Sent by heaven, wouldst thou call it? Or is it we ourselves, a race insatiable, never content to abide on knowledge gained, that search out the day of our birth and the scene of our life's ending, what the kindly Father of the gods is thinking, or iron-hearted Clotho? Hence comes it that entrails occupy us, and the airy speech of birds, and the moon's numbered seeds, and Thessalia's horrid rites. But that earlier golden age of our forefathers, and the races born of rock or oak were not thus minded; their only passion was to gain the mastery of the woods and the soil by might of hand; it was forbidden to man to know what to-morrow's day would bring. We, a depraved and pitiable crowd, probe deep the counsels of the gods.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Unde iste per orbem
primus venturi miseris animantibus aeger
crevit amor? divumne feras hoc munus, an ipsi,
gens avida et parto non umquam stare quieti,
eruimus quae prima dies, ubi terminus aevi,
quid bonus ille deum genitor, quid ferrea Clotho
cogitet? hinc fibrae et volucrum per nubila sermo
astrorumque vices numerataque semita lunae
Thessalicumque nefas. at non prior aureus ille
sanguis avum scopulisque satae vel robore gentes
mentibus his usae; silvas amor unus humumque
edomuisse manu; quid crastina volveret aetas
scire nefas homini. nos, pravum et flebile vulgus,
scrutati penitus superos.
Source: Thebaid, Book III, Line 551 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„So when ebbing Nile hides himself in his great caverns and holds in his mouth the liquid nurture of an eastern winter, the valleys smoke forsaken by the flood and gaping Egypt awaits the sounds of her watery father, until at their prayers he grants sustenance to the Pharian fields and brings on a great harvest year.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Sic ubi se magnis refluus suppressit in antris
Nilus et Eoae liquentia pabula brumae
ore premit, fumant desertae gurgite valles
et patris undosi sonitus expectat hiulca
Aegyptos, donec Phariis alimenta rogatus
donet agris magnumque inducat messibus annum.
Source: Thebaid, Book IV, Line 705

„Like is he to a wolf that has forced an entrance to a rich fold of sheep, and now, his breast all clotted with foul corruption and his gaping bristly mouth unsightly with blood-stained wool, hies him from the pens, turning this way and that his troubled gaze, should the angry shepherds find out their loss and follow in pursuit, and flees all conscious of his bold deed.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Ille velut pecoris lupus expugnator opimi,
pectora tabenti sanie grauis hirtaque saetis
ora cruentata deformis hiantia lana,
decedit stabulis huc illuc turbida versans
lumina, si duri comperta clade sequantur
pastores, magnique fugit non inscius ausi.
Source: Thebaid, Book IV, Line 363 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„But the child, lying in the bosom of the vernal earth and deep in herbage, now crawls forward on his face and crushes the soft grasses, now in clamorous thirst for milk cries for his beloved nurse; again he smiles, and would fain utter words that wrestle with his infant lips, and wonders at the noise of the woods, or plucks at aught he meets, or with open mouth drinks in the day, and strays in the forest all ignorant of its dangers, in carelessness profound.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) At puer in gremio vernae telluris et alto
gramine nunc faciles sternit procursibus herbas
in vultum nitens, caram modo lactis egeno
nutricem clangore ciens iterumque renidens
et teneris meditans verba inluctantia labris
miratur nemorum strepitus aut obuia carpit
aut patulo trahit ore diem nemorique malorum
inscius et vitae multum securus inerrat.
Source: Thebaid, Book IV, Line 793 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„Barren are the years behind me. This is the first day of my span, here is the threshold of my life.“

—  Statius, Silvae

ii, line 12
Silvae, Book IV
Original: (la) Steriles transmisimus annos:
haec aevi mihi prima dies, hic limina vitae.

„Atlas' grandson obeys his sire's words and hastily thereupon binds the winged sandals on to his ankles and with his wide hat covers his locks and tempers the stars. Then he thrusts the wand in his right hand; with this he was wont to banish sweet slumber or recall it, with this to enter black Tartarus and give life to bloodless phantoms. Down he leapt and shivered as the thin air received him. No pause; he takes swift and lofty flight through the void and traces a vast arc across the clouds.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Paret Atlantiades dictis genitoris et inde
summa pedum propere plantaribus inligat alis
obnubitque comas et temperat astra galero.
tum dextrae uirgam inseruit, qua pellere dulces
aut suadere iterum somnos, qua nigra subire
Tartara et exangues animare adsueuerat umbras.
desiluit, tenuique exceptus inhorruit aura.
nec mora, sublimes raptim per inane volatus
carpit et ingenti designat nubila gyro.
Source: Thebaid, Book I, Line 303

„Even so a crowd of nestlings, seeing their mother returning through the air afar, would fain go to meet her, and lean gaping from the edge of the nest, and would even now be falling, did she not spread all her motherly bosom to save them, and chide them with loving wings.“

—  Statius, book Thebaid

Original: (la) Volucrum sic turba recentum,
cum reducem longo prospexit in aere matrem,
ire cupit contra summique e margine nidi
extat hians, iam iamque cadat, ni pectore toto
obstet aperta parens et amantibus increpat alis.
Source: Thebaid, Book X, Line 458 (tr. J. H. Mozley)

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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