Translation:Catullus 72

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Catullus 72
by Catullus, translated from Latin by Wikisource
Elegiac couplets.

Literal English Translation Original Latin Line

You once said that you knew only Catullus,
   Lesbia, and you did not want to hold Jove before me.
I loved you not so much as the mob does a harlot,
   but as a father loves his children and sons-in-law.
Now I have known you: therefore, though I am burnt more fiercely,
   still you are much less substantial and insignificant.
How is this so, you ask? Because such an injury drives a lover
   to love more often, but to be less friendly.

Dīcēbās quondam sōlum tē nōsse Catullum,
   Lesbia, nec prae mē velle tenēre Iovem.
Dīlēxī tum tē nōn tantum ut vulgus amīcam,
   sed pater ut gnātōs dīligit et generōs.
Nunc tē cognōvī: quārē etsī impēnsius ūror,
   multō mī tamen es vīlior et levior.
Qui potis est, inquis? Quod amantem iniūria tālis
   cōgit amāre magis, sed bene velle minus.