Today we publish a new selection of poems by Latin authors to hear in Latin and follow in English. See the selection here.
We have revised our translation of perhaps Catullus’s most famous poem, “Vivamus, mea Lesbia, atque amemus” – Lesbia, let’s live and love. Hear it in the original Latin and follow in English by following the link to the poem page here.
In this second selection of poems on a theme, love is not going so smoothly. Dido is being consumed by a passion for Aeneas which as yet is unrequited:
Propertius is obsessed by Cynthia, but she only seems to make him unhappy:
Catullus was so blissfully happy with Lesbia, but his luck has changed:
Propertius is still camped on his lady’s doorstep, and her door doesn’t seem to care:
the lover’s complaint to the door
But doesn’t Horace say that he is glad that it is over with Pyrrha? Yes, but you can see that he still misses her:
Even in Hades when human life is past, Dido harbours a grudge:
Aeneas finds Dido among the shades
Propertius again – he says he’s invincible, but it doesn’t sound much fun to be
Follow this link to see:
This is the first of a new series of Pantheon Poets Latin medleys – a selection of Latin poems which share a common theme. The first is love, and specifically love that is happy – so far. You can hear the Latin and follow in English by following the links, and on each poem page you will find another link if you would like to see a blog post with an illustration.
We start – where else – with one of the most celebrated love poems in any language: Catullus inviting Lesbia to live and love, and not to mind the gossip or count the kisses.
Vivamus, mea Lesbia
Next, Virgil in the Aeneid describes Dido, the Queen of Carthage, falling for Aeneas, the brave and noble Trojan Prince who is her guest.
Dido falls in love
In this extract, Ovid expresses some of the free and easy attitudes to love that we believe got him into trouble with the Emperor Augustus – a great believer in conservative family values – and earned him a one-way ticket to an unhappy exile by the Black Sea.
Ovid’s broad-minded advice to his mistress
Propertius has been out for a night on the tiles and makes a dawn visit to his lady-love, Cynthia.
Propertius and his sleeping beauty
Ovid has been courting. Finally he has had his wicked way, and seems not to care who knows about it.
Back finally to Catullus, doyen of love poets. How many kisses are enough for him and too much. How many??!!
How many kisses
Links to new selections will be posted in the index here.
The loss of a loved one is hard, but it has inspired some very beautiful poetry. This selection begins with Catullus’s
farewell to a beloved brother.
In this poem, the inspiration for a famous English translation, Callimachus remembers his
Catullus expresses both consolation and desire in his half-serious lament for
Archilochus, the seventh-century BCE warrior-poet, explains that
Finally, in the Elysian fields Aeneas is shown Marcellus, Augustus’s tragically short-lived
See the index to Pantheon Poets’ selections of poetry on a theme here.
The latest in Pantheon Poets’ Latin (and Greek) selections is of poems of travel by Catullus, Homer, Ovid and Virgil; enjoy it here.
See and hear a selection of poems by Catullus, Virgil, Callimachus and Archilochus on the theme of loss and mourning here.