Hie Shade of Dido

Hefore Aeneas reaches his final destination in Italy, he visits the Underworld to see the shade of his father, Anchises, who had died on the voyage from Troy to Italy, Soon after entering the realm of the dead, Aeneas comes to the Fields of Lamentation (lugentes campl), the region assigned to those who died for love. There he chances to see Dido, the beautiful Carthaginian queen, who killed herself after he had loved and then abandoned her.

Inter quas Phoenissa recens a vulnere Dido 450

errabat silva in magna; quam Troius heros ut primum iuxta stetit agnovitque per umbras obscuram, qualem primo qui surgere mense aut videt aut vidisse putat per nubila lunam, demisit lacrimas dulcique adfatus amore est: 455

text P. Vergili Maronis Opera, ed. R. A. B. Mynors

(Oxford Classical Texts, 1969) meter hexameter [§mi]

inter | quas || Phoe|nissa re|cens || a | vulnere | Dido erra|bat || silv(a) | in mag|na || quam | Troius | herds

450 Inter quas among whom, i.e., the shades of other women mentioned in the preceding lines; Phoenissa Phoenician—Dido came from the Phoenician city of Tyre; "recens (recentis) a vulnere lit., fresh from her wound, i.e., her wound still fresh—the wound is the self-inflicted blow that killed her. 45if. silva in magna—the final vowel of silva, though long (we can deduce its length from the context), is elided; Troius heros the Trojan hero (heros heroos m.); the postponed ut [§g4] is followed by two indicative verbs and so means when, but the clauses are joined to what precedes by quam (whom), which is governed by iuxta (prep. + acc„ near) and agnovit (agnosco -ere recognize)—we cannot reproduce this common Latin idiom in English and must say when the Trojan hero first stood near her and recognized her; per umbras through the shadows—these umbrae are genuine shadows and not the spirits of the dead. 45 3f. obscuram dim, adj. agreeing with quam (1. 451), but trans, a dim figure; qualem, which agrees with lunam (1. 454), is the relative adjective of quality and here introduces a simile; primo ... mense abl. of time when [§G37] at the beginning of the month (mensis mensis m.); qui indef. pron. a man; take surgere ... per nubila lunam after videt and vidisse, lit., of what sort a man, at the beginning of the month, sees or thinks he has seen (supply se with vidisse) the moon to rise through clouds (nubilum -i n.)—the comparison is between Aeneas' sighting of Dido and a man seeing the moon when obscured by clouds (the acc.+inf. [§gio] [se] vidisse is followed by another acc.+inf., lunam surgere), i.e., just as at the beginning of the month a man sees or thinks he has seen the moon rising through the clouds. 455 demitto -ere let fall, shed; dulci ... amore abl. of manner [§G45] with tender love; adfatus ... est spoke (adfor -ari).

"infelix Dido, verus mihi nuntius ergo venerat exstinctam ferroque extrema secutam?

funeris heu tibi causa fui? per sidera iuro, per superos et si qua fides tellure sub ima est, invitus, regina, tuo de litore cessi. 460

sed me iussa deum, quae nunc has ire per umbras, per loca senta situ cogunt noctemque profundam, imperiis egere suis; nec credere quivi hunc tantum tibi me discessu ferre dolorem.

siste gradum teque aspectu ne subtrahe nostro. 465

quem fugis? extremum fato quod te adloquor hoc est."

456f. infelix (infellcis) Dido voc. unhappy Dido; take ergo (so) at the beginning of the sentence; mihi dat. of motion toward [§G 35]; [te] exstinctam [esse] that you had died—the passive of exstingud -ere has the meaning die; ferro instrumental abl. [§G47] with a sword; [te] extrema secutam [esse] lit., you to have pursued final things, i.e., that you had sought [your own] end; these two acc.+inf. constructions [§gio] with [te] are in apposition to nuntius (1.456, message).

458 funeris (funus funeris n.funeral) is used by metonymy [§g 97] for death; heu interjection alas!; tibi dat. of disadvantage [§g 31] for you; sidus slderis n. star.

459 super! -drum m.pl. gods (see note to Aeneid 1.4, page 66); qua indef. adj. with fides, any faith; tellure sub una under the deepest earth, i.e., here in the Underworld.

460 invitus trans, by an adverb [§055], unwillingly; regina (-ae f.) voc. O queen; cessi (cedo -ere) I went.

461 iussum -I n. command; deum = deorum [§G95]; the antecedent of quae is iussa; Ire infin. after cogunt [me] (1.462).

462 loca senta situ places squalid (sentus) with neglect (situ abl. of cause [§g 48]; situs -us m.); supply me with cogunt force me; profundus bottomless,

463 imperils ... suis instrumental abl. [§G47] with their orders—this phrase would normally presuppose that the subject is the gods, not the commands of the gods, but Aeneas expresses himself in this way to emphasize that he was completely under divine control; egere (= egerunt) 3 pi. perf. ind, act. ago agere; quivi 1 sg. perf. ind. act. queo quire be able.

464 The subject of the acc.+inf. [§gio] is me, the object hunc tantum ... dolorem; tibi dat. of disadvantage [§g 31] for you; discessu (discessus -us m.) instrumental abl. [§g 47] by [my] leaving.

465 siste 2 sg. pres. imp, act. sisto -ere halt (tr.); gradus -us m. step; te ... ne subtrahe (2 sg. pres. imp. act. subtraho -ere) do not withdraw yourself; aspectu ... nostro abl. of separation [§g 40] from my sight (aspectus -us m.; nostro = meo [§g53])-

466 The relative clause quod te adloquor (adloquor -I takes two accusatives) has hoc as its antecedent; lit., this which I say to you is by fate (fato abl. of cause [§G 48]) the last, i.e., the words I am saying to you are the last allowed by fate.

talibus Aeneas ardentem et torva tuentem lenibat dictis animum lacrimasque ciebat. ilia solo fixos oculos aversa tenebat nec magis incepto vultum sermone movetur quam si dura silex aut stet Marpesia cautes. tandem corripuit sese atque inimica refugit in nemus umbriferum, coniunx ubi pristinus illi respondet curis aequatque Sychaeus amorem.

<-: Vergil Aeneid 6.450-474

4ó7í. talibus ... dictis instrumental abl. [§g 47] with such words; take ardentem et torva tuentem with animum (1. 468), which here means anger, lit., [her] anger, burning (ardeo -ere) and looking grim [things] (torva adverbial acc. [§gi6] of tor-vus; tueor tuéri look at)—Vergil boldly says that Dido's anger was looking grimly, but for clarity trans, her burning anger and grim looks; lenibat (= léniébat; lénió -ire) conative imperfect [§g 62] tried to soothe (lit., was soothing)—we know from what follows that Aeneas did not succeed; the tears that Aeneas was stirring up were his own.

469 solo abl. of place where [§G 38] on the ground (solum -I n.); fixós perf. pple. of fígó -ere plant, keep fixed; aversa turned away.

47of. magis ... quam si more ... than if; incepto ... sermone instrumental abl. [§g47 ]by his talk (sermo sermónis m.) having been begun, but trans .from the beginning of his words; vultum acc. of respect [§015]; movetur historic pres. [§g6o], lit., nor is she moved with respect to [her] face, i.e., nor did her expression change; silex silicis usually m., but here f. flint; cautes cautis f. rock; Marpésius adj. of Mar-pessa, a mountain on Paros famous for its marble quarries (Marpessian rock = marble); stet agrees with the nearer subject [§G58] and is subjunctive because of an abridged unreal condition [§G94]—the full comparison would be than hard flint or Marpessian rock would be moved if it were standing there.

472 corripuit sesé (= sé) she snatched herself away (corripio -ere); inimica [still] hostile; refugió -ereflee back.

473Í. nemus nemoris n. grove; umbrifer shady; ubi (where) is postponed [§g4]; pristinus former; illi dat. with respondet (historic pres. [§g6o]; responded -ére respond); cüris abl. of respect [§g 46]; lit., responds to her with respect to [her] cares, trans, responded to [her] sorrows; aequat ... amorem reciprocated (historic pres. [§g6o]; aequo -are) [her] love; Sychaeus -i m. Dido's coniunx pristinus—his murder by her brother had been the cause of her leaving her native city, Tyre, to found Carthage.

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