Translation:Catullus 4

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Catullus 4
by Catullus, translated from Latin by Wikisource
Iambic senarius (trimeter).
Literal English Translation Original Latin Line

That boat, which you see, my guests
says that it was the fastest of ships
and that the rush of any floating ship
it was not unable to surpass, whether oars
it needed or a sail in order to fly.
And it denies that the shore of the menacing Adriatic
denies this, or the Cycladic islands,
or noble Rhodes and the choppy Thracian
Propontis, or the savage Pontic gulf
where that would-be-boat before was
a leafy forest; for, on the ridge of Mt. Cytorus,
with its chattering leaves it often gave out a whistling sound.
O Pontic Amastris and boxwood-bearing Cytorus
that to you these things were and are most well known,
says the boat: from its earliest beginning
it says that it has stood on your peak
it has dipped its little oars in your water
and thence through so many unruly seas
it carried its master, whether a left or a right breeze
would call, or a favorable wind (Jupiter) fell
on each sheet at the same time;
nor were any offerings to the gods of the shore
made by it, when it was coming
from the last sea up to this clear lake.
But these things were earlier: now in secluded
rest it grows old and dedicates itself to you,
O twin Castor and twin of Castor.
.

Phasēlus ille, quem vidētis, hospitēs,
ait fuisse nāvium celerrimus,
neque ūllĭus natantis impetum trabis
nequisse praeterīre, sīve palmulīs
opus foret volāre sīve linteō.
Et hoc negat minācis hadriāticī
negāre lītus Īnsulāsve Cycladās
Rhodumque nōbilem horridamque Thrāciam
Propontida trucemve Ponticum sinum,
ubi iste post phasēlus anteā fuit
comāta silva; nam Cytōriō in iugō
loquente saepe sībilum ēdidit comā.
Amastrĭ Pontica et Cytōre buxifer,
tibi haec fuisse et esse cognitissima
ait phasēlus, ultimā ex orīgine
tuō stetisse dīcit in cacūmine,
tuō imbuisse palmulās in aequore,
et inde tot per impotentia freta
erum tulisse (laeva sīve dextera
vocāret aura, sīve utrumque Iuppiter
simul secundus incidisset in pedem),
neque ūlla vōta lītorālibus deīs
sibi esse facta, cum venīret ā marī
novissimō hunc ad ūsque limpidum lacum.
Sed haec prius fuēre: nunc reconditā
senet quiēte sēque dēdicat tibī,
gemelle Castor et gemelle Castoris.

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