Oppian, Colluthus, Tryphiodorus, Oppian, Colluthus, and Tryphiodorus

LCL 219: vi-vii

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vi

Preface

The present volume forms the third instalment of those translations from the Greek poets on which, almost by an accident, I have spent no inconsiderable portion of the little leisure of my life. If now, contemplating that work dispassionately, I am moved by some misgiving and am

σπουδῆς γε μέντοι τῆς ἐμῆς οὐκ ἄξιον,

perhaps the same sober reflection occurs to most men in looking upon the finished labour of their hands: fecine operae pretium? Be that as it may, if it should occur to any, otherwise approving, to regret that I have selected for my purpose a series of poets who, after all, dwell rather on the lower levels of Parnassus, I am not altogether without hope that I may hereafter find time to do similar homage to some choicer spirits, to Aeschylus, for example, and to Pindar: for which last, indeed, what I have hitherto written was in a sense and in the first instance merely preparatory. But for the immediate future another sort of work suggests itself which cannot wisely be postponed and which one might, when too late, regret to have left unattempted. Vitae summa brevis spem nos vetat incohare longam. Even as I write, while the September sea breaks at my feet on the grey stones

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