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Ovid XIV Chapter 14: 581-608 The deification of Aeneas
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Aeneas's virtues had compelled all the gods, even Juno herself, to bring to an end their ancient feud, and since his young son Julus's fortunes were firmly founded, Cytherea's heroic son was ripe for heaven. Venus had sought the opinion of the gods, and throwing her arms round her father's neck, had said 'You have never been harsh to me, father, now be kindest of all, I beg you. Grant my Aeneas, who claims you as his grandfather through my bloodline, some divinity, however little you choose so long as you grant him something! It is enough that he once gazed on the hateful kingdom, once crossed the steams of Styx.' The gods agreed, and Juno, the royal consort, did not display her severe expression, but consented peacefully. Then Jupiter said: 'You are worthy of this divine gift, you who ask, as is he for whom you ask it: my daughter, possess what you desire!' The word was spoken: with joy she thanked her father, and drawn by her team of doves through the clear air, she came to the coast of Laurentum, where the waters of the river Numicius, hidden by reeds, wind down to the neighbouring sea. She ordered the river-god to cleanse Aeneas, of whatever was subject to death, and bear it away, in his silent course, into the depths of the ocean. The horned god [Note 1] executed Venus's orders, and purged Aeneas of whatever was mortal, and dispersed it on the water: what was best in him remained. Once purified, his mother anointed his body with divine perfume, touched his lips with a mixture of sweet nectar and ambrosia, and made him a god, whom the Romans named Indiges, admitting him to their temples and altars. |
Note 1: horned god = Numicius
Iamque deos omnes ipsamque Aeneia virtus |
Iunonem veteres finire coegerat iras,
cum, bene fundatis opibus crescentis Iuli,
tempestivus erat caelo Cythereius heros.
ambieratque Venus superos colloque parentis
circumfusa sui 'numquam mihi' dixerat 'ullo
tempore dure pater, nunc sis mitissimus, opto,
Aeneaeque meo, qui te de sanguine nostro
fecit avum, quamvis parvum des, optime, numen,
dummodo des aliquod! satis est inamabile regnum
adspexisse semel, Stygios semel isse per amnes.'
adsensere dei, nec coniunx regia vultus
inmotos tenuit placatoque adnuit ore;
tum pater 'estis' ait 'caelesti munere digni,
quaeque petis pro quoque petis: cape, nata, quod optas!'
fatus erat: gaudet gratesque agit illa parenti
perque leves auras iunctis invecta columbis
litus adit Laurens, ubi tectus harundine serpit
in freta flumineis vicina Numicius undis.
hunc iubet Aeneae, quaecumque obnoxia morti,
abluere et tacito deferre sub aequora cursu;
corniger exsequitur Veneris mandata suisque,
quicquid in Aenea fuerat mortale, repurgat
et respersit aquis; pars optima restitit illi.
lustratum genetrix divino corpus odore
unxit et ambrosia cum dulci nectare mixta
contigit os fecitque deum, quem turba Quirini
nuncupat Indigetem temploque arisque recepit.