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Quote of the day: Or the emperor's ears were so formed, th
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The Aeneid by Virgil
translated by Theodore C. Williams
Book XI Chapter 14: Turnus speaks
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By such discourse he stirred the burning blood
of Turnus, who groaned loud and from his heart
this utterance hurled: O Drances, thou art rich
in large words, when the day of battle calls
for actions. If our senators convene
thou comest early. But the council hall
is not for swollen talk, such as thy tongue
in safety tosses forth; so long as walls
hold back thy foes, and ere the trenches flow
with blood of brave men slain. O, rattle on
in fluent thunder -- thy habitual style!
Brand me a coward, Drances, when thy sword
has heaped up Trojan slain, and on the field
thy shining trophies rise. Now may we twain
our martial prowess prove. Our foe, forsooth,
is not so far to seek; around yon wall
he lies in siege: to front him let us fly!
Why art thou tarrying? Wilt thou linger here,
a soldier only in thy windy tongue,
and thy swift, coward heels? Defeated, I?
Foul wretch, what tongue that honors truth can tell
of my defeat, while Tiber overflows
with Trojan blood? while king Evander's house
in ruin dies, and his Arcadians lie
stripped naked on the field? O, not like thee
did Bitias or the giant Pandarus
misprize my honor; nor those men of Troy
whom this good sword to death and dark sent down,
a thousand in a day, -- though I was penned
a prisoner in the ramparts of my foe.
Talibus exarsit dictis uiolentia Turni.
dat gemitum rumpitque has imo pectore uoces:
'larga quidem semper, Drance, tibi copia fandi
tum cum bella manus poscunt, patribusque uocatis
primus ades. sed non replenda est curia uerbis,
quae tuto tibi magna uolant, dum distinet hostem
agger murorum nec inundant sanguine fossae.
proinde tona eloquio (solitum tibi) meque timoris
argue tu, Drance, quando tot stragis aceruos
Teucrorum tua dextra dedit, passimque tropaeis
insignis agros. possit quid uiuida uirtus
experiare licet, nec longe scilicet hostes
quaerendi nobis; circumstant undique muros.
imus in aduersos—quid cessas? an tibi Mauors
uentosa in lingua pedibusque fugacibus istis
semper erit?
pulsus ego? aut quisquam merito, foedissime, pulsum
arguet, Iliaco tumidum qui crescere Thybrim
sanguine et Euandri totam cum stirpe uidebit
procubuisse domum atque exutos Arcadas armis?
haud ita me experti Bitias et Pandarus ingens
et quos mille die uictor sub Tartara misi,
inclusus muris hostilique aggere saeptus.