Boethius, The Consolation of Philosophy

LCL 74: 158-159

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crimen affingitur, quae perferunt meruisse creduntur. Et ego quidem bonis omnibus pulsus, dignitatibus 165 exutus, existimatione foedatus ob beneficium supplicium tuli.

Videre autem videor nefarias sceleratorum officinas gaudio laetitiaque fluitantes, perditissimum quemque novis delationum fraudibus imminentem, iacere bonos 170 nostri discriminis terrore prostratos, flagitiosum quemque ad audendum quidem facinus impunitate, ad efficiendum vero praemiis incitari, insontes autem non modo securitate, verum ipsa etiam defensione privates. Itaque libet exclamare:


O stelliferi conditor orbis Qui perpetuo nixus solio Rapido caelum turbine versas Legemque pati sidera cogis, 5Ut nunc pleno lucida cornu Totis fratris obvia flammis Condat stellas luna minores, Nunc obscuro pallida cornu Phoebo propior lumina perdat, 10Et qui primae tempore noctis Agit algentes Hesperos ortus, Solitas iterum mutet habenas Phoebi pallens Lucifer ortu. Tu frondifluae frigore brumae 15Stringis lucem breviore mora: Tu, cum fervida venerit aestas, Agiles nocti dividis horas. Tua vis varium temperat annum Ut quas Boreae spiritus aufert


Consolation I

charged with some crime, he is thought to deserve all that he suffers. So I now, deprived of all my goods, stripped of my honours, and the object of evil gossip, am punished for my good service. And I seem to see the wicked in their factories of crime wallowing in their evil delight, all the corrupt now plotting new false accusations, while good men cower in fear, terrified by what has happened to me. The base and wicked are encouraged to greater boldness by their impunity, to greater crimes by their rewards; and the innocent are deprived not only of safety but even of the chance to defend themselves. So I am moved to exclaim:


O Maker of the circle of the stars, Seated on your eternal throne, Spinner of the whirling heavens, Binding the constellations by your law— As at one time the shining moon with crescent full, Reflecting all the sun her brother’s fire. Hides all the lesser stars, And at another closer to Phoebus pales And loses all her light, her crescent dark; Or when, at fall of night, Venus, as evening star, arises cold, And then, as morning star, paling at sunrise, Changes again her long-accustomed role;— You with the winter’s cold when leaves pour down Draw in the short day’s light; You when the summer comes aflame Hasten the passing of the night’s swift hours. The changing year is ordered by your power, So that the leaves the north wind strips away

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.boethius-consolation_philosophy.1973