Apuleius, Metamorphoses

LCL 44: 258-259

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“Interea Psyche variis iactabatur discursibus dies noctesque mariti vestigationibus inquieta animo, tanto cupidior iratum licet, si non uxoriis1 blanditiis lenire, certe servilibus precibus propitiare. Et prospecto templo quodam in ardui montis vertice, ‘Unde autem’ inquit ‘scio an istic meus degat dominus?’ Et ilico dirigit citatum gradum, quem defectum prorsus assiduis laboribus spes incitabat et votum. Iamque naviter emensis celsioribus iugis pulvinaribus sese proximam intulit. Videt spicas frumentarias in acervo et alias flexiles in corona, et spicas hordei videt. Erant et falces et operae messoriae mundus omnis, sed cuncta passim iacentia et incuria confusa et ut solet aestu laborantium manibus proiecta. Haec singula Psyche curiose dividit et discretim semota2 rite componit, rata scilicet nullius dei fana ac3 caerimonias neglegere se debere, sed omnium benivolam misericordiam corrogare.


“Haec eam sollicite seduloque curantem Ceres alma deprehendit, et longum exclamat protinus: ‘Ain, Psyche miseranda? Totum per orbem Venus anxia disquisitione tuum vestigium furens animi requirit, teque ad extremum supplicium expetit et totis numinis sui viribus ultionem

  • 1F uxoris.
  • 2F remota.
  • 3F omits ac.

Metamorphoses VI



“Meanwhile Psyche wandered this way and that, restlessly tracking her husband day and night, so eager was she, even if she could not soften his anger with a wife’s allurements, at least to try to appease him with a slave’s prayers. When she spotted a temple at the top of a high mountain, she said, ‘How do I know if perhaps that is not where my master lives?’ At once she began to walk rapidly toward it; although she was very weary from continuous effort, hope and desire quickened her pace. When she had valiantly climbed the lofty ridge, she went in and stood near the holy couch. There she saw ears of grain in a heap and others woven into wreaths, and ears of barley. There were sickles too, and all the implements of harvest work, but everything was lying scattered about and in careless disorder, as if tossed from the labourers’ hands in the summer heat. Psyche carefully separated all these objects one by one and arranged them properly in distinct piles, evidently believing that she ought not to neglect any god’s shrines and rituals, but appeal to the benevolence and pity of them all.


“When bountiful Ceres discovered her attentively and diligently taking care of her shrine, she instantly exclaimed from afar: ‘What’s this, pitiable Psyche? All over the world Venus is making an intense investigation to track you down, raging in her heart. She seeks to inflict condign punishment upon you and demands vengeance with all the

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.apuleius-metamorphoses.1996