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Quote of the day: And that he might also soften the rememb
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The Aeneid by Virgil
translated by Theodore C. Williams
Book XI Chapter 27: Tarchon
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But now not blindly from Olympian throne
the Sire [Note 1] of gods and men observant saw
how sped the day. Then to the conflict dire
the god thrust Tarchon forth, the Tyrrhene king,
goading the warrior's rage. So Tarchon rode
through slaughter wide and legions in retreat,
and roused the ranks with many a wrathful cry:
he called each man by name, and toward the foe
drove back the routed lines. What terrors now,
Tuscan cowards, dead to noble rage,
have seized ye? or what laggard sloth and vile
unmans your hearts, that now a woman's arm
pursues ye and this scattered host confounds?
Why dressed in steel, or to what purpose wear
your futile swords? Not slackly do ye join
the ranks of Venus in a midnight war;
or when fantastic pipes of Bacchus call
your dancing feet, right venturesome ye fly
to banquets and the flowing wine -- what zeal,
what ardor then! Or if your flattering priest
begins the revel, and to lofty groves
fat flesh of victims bids ye haste away!
So saying, his steed he spurred, and scorning death
dashed into the mid-fray, where, frenzy-driven,
he sought out Venulus, and, grappling him
with one hand, from the saddle snatched his foe,
and, clasping strongly to his giant breast,
exultant bore away. The shouting rose
to heaven, and all the Latins gazed his way,
as o'er the plain the fiery Tarchon flew
bearing the full-armed man; then, breaking off
the point of his own spear, he pried a way
through the seam'd armor for the mortal wound;
the other, struggling, thrust back from his throat
the griping hand, full force to force opposing.
As when a golden eagle high in air
knits to a victim -- snake his clinging feet
and deeply-thrusting claws; but, coiling back,
the wounded serpent roughens his stiff scales
and stretches high his hissing head; whereat
the eagle with hooked beak the more doth rend
her writhing foe, and with swift stroke of wing
lashes the air: so Tarchon, from the ranks
of Tibur's sons, triumphant snatched his prey.
The Tuscans rallied now, well pleased to view
their king's example and successful war.
Then Arruns, marked for doom, made circling line
around Camilla's path, his crafty spear
seeking its lucky chance. Where'er the maid
sped furious to the battle, Arruns there
in silence dogged her footsteps and pursued;
or where triumphant from her fallen foes
she backward drew, the warrior stealthily
turned his swift reins that way: from every side
he circled her, and scanned his vantage here
or vantage there, his skilful javelin
stubbornly shaking.

Note 1: Sire = Jupiter

Event: Acts and death of Camilla

At non haec nullis hominum sator atque deorum
obseruans oculis summo sedet altus Olympo.
Tyrrhenum genitor Tarchonem in proelia saeua
suscitat et stimulis haud mollibus inicit iras.
ergo inter caedes cedentiaque agmina Tarchon
fertur equo uariisque instigat uocibus alas
nomine quemque uocans, reficitque in proelia pulsos.
'quis metus, o numquam dolituri, o semper inertes
Tyrrheni, quae tanta animis ignauia uenit?
femina palantis agit atque haec agmina uertit!
quo ferrum quidue haec gerimus tela inrita dextris?
at non in Venerem segnes nocturnaque bella,
aut ubi curua choros indixit tibia Bacchi.
exspectate dapes et plenae pocula mensae
(hic amor, hoc studium) dum sacra secundus haruspex
nuntiet ac lucos uocet hostia pinguis in altos!'
haec effatus equum in medios moriturus et ipse
concitat, et Venulo aduersum se turbidus infert
dereptumque ab equo dextra complectitur hostem
et gremium ante suum multa ui concitus aufert.
tollitur in caelum clamor cunctique Latini
conuertere oculos. uolat igneus aequore Tarchon
arma uirumque ferens; tum summa ipsius ab hasta
defringit ferrum et partis rimatur apertas,
qua uulnus letale ferat; contra ille repugnans
sustinet a iugulo dextram et uim uiribus exit.
utque uolans alte raptum cum fulua draconem
fert aquila implicuitque pedes atque unguibus haesit,
saucius at serpens sinuosa uolumina uersat
arrectisque horret squamis et sibilat ore
arduus insurgens, illa haud minus urget obunco
luctantem rostro, simul aethera uerberat alis:
haud aliter praedam Tiburtum ex agmine Tarchon
portat ouans. ducis exemplum euentumque secuti
Maeonidae incurrunt. Tum fatis debitus Arrun
uelocem iaculo et multa prior arte Camillam
circuit, et quae sit fortuna facillima temptat.
qua se cumque furens medio tulit agmine uirgo,
hac Arruns subit et tacitus uestigia lustrat;
qua uictrix redit illa pedemque ex hoste reportat,
hac iuuenis furtim celeris detorquet habenas.
hos aditus iamque hos aditus omnemque pererrat
undique circuitum et certam quatit improbus hastam.