Lores Miseries

Propertius Elegies 1.1.1-8,17-24,31-38

Cynthia first captured me, unhappy wretch (lit, miserable me), previously smitten by no desires, with her eyes. Then Love cast down my eyes in their resolute pride (lit, of resolute pride) and put [his] feet on [my] head and trampled it (lit, pressed [my] head with [his] feet having been put on [it]), until the villain taught me to hate unresponsive (lit, chaste) girls and to live recklessly (lit., with no plan). Alas for me! Now this madness has not abated over an entire year, while I, however, am forced to endure (lit., have) hostile gods.

In my case, slow Love does not devise any stratagems nor does he remember to tread well-known paths as [he did] previously. But you who seduce the moon and pull her down [from the sky] and [whose] work [it is] to make propitiatory sacrifices in magical hearths, come now! change the heart (lit., mind) of my mistress and make her be paler than my face. Then I would attribute to you the power to summon the dead and the stars with Cytinaean spells.

Remain behind, you to whom the god nods with receptive (lit., easy) ear, and may you always be equally matched in a secure love. For our Venus torments me throughout bitter nights, and at no time is ungratified Love absent. Avoid this scourge, I warn [you]; let everyone be occupied with his own care (lit., let his own care occupy each person), nor let him change [his] bed when love has become familiar (lit., love having become familiar). But if anyone turns deaf ears to [my] warnings, alas! with what great grief will he recall my words!

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