Virgil, Eclogues

LCL 63: 54-55

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mopsus

Tu maior; tibi me est aequum parere, Menalca, 5sive sub incertas Zephyris motantibus umbras, sive antro potius succedimus. aspice, ut antrum silvestris raris sparsit labrusca racemis.

menalcas

Montibus in nostris solus tibi certat Amyntas.

mopsus

Quid, si idem certet Phoebum superare canendo?

menalcas

10Incipe, Mopse, prior, si quos aut Phyllidis ignes aut Alconis habes laudes aut iurgia Codri. incipe; pascentis servabit Tityrus haedos.

mopsus

Immo haec, in viridi nuper quae cortice fagi carmina descripsi et modulans alterna notavi, 15experiar: tu deinde iubeto certet Amyntas.

menalcas

Lenta salix quantum pallenti cedit olivae, puniceis humilis quantum saliunca rosetis, iudicio nostro tantum tibi cedit Amyntas. sed tu desine plura, puer: successimus antro.

mopsus

20“Exstinctum Nymphae crudeli funere Daphnin flebant (vos coryli testes et flumina Nymphis), cum complexa sui corpus miserabile nati atque deos atque astra vocat crudelia mater. non ulli pastos illis egere diebus

  • 15certet P: ut certet R
54

Eclogues

mopsus

You are the older, Menalcas: it is right for me to defer to you, whether we pass beneath the shadows that shift at the Zephyrs’ stirring, or rather into the cave. See how the wild vine with its stray clusters has overrun the cave.

menalcas

Among our hills your only rival is Amyntas.

mopsus

He might just as well compete with Apollo in song.

menalcas

Begin first, Mopsus, if you have any love songs for Phyllis, or aught in praise of Alcon, or any gibes at Codrus. Begin. Tityrus will tend the grazing kids.

mopsus

No, I will try these verses, which the other day I carved on the green beech-bark and set to music, marking words and tune in turn. Then you can bid Amyntas compete with me!

menalcas

As far as the lithe willow yields to the pale olive, as far as the lowly Celtic reed yields to crimson rose beds, so far, to my mind, does Amyntas yield to you. Nay, say no more, lad; we have passed into the cave.

mopsus

“For Daphnis, cut off by a cruel death, the Nymphs wept—you hazels and rivers bear witness to the Nymphs—when, clasping her son’s piteous corpse, his mother cried out on the cruelty of both gods and stars. On those days, Daphnis, none drove the pastured kine to

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.virgil-eclogues.1916