The Odes and Carmen Saeculare of Horace eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 142 pages of information about The Odes and Carmen Saeculare of Horace.

     To suffer hardness with good cheer,
       In sternest school of warfare bred,
     Our youth should learn; let steed and spear
       Make him one day the Parthian’s dread;
     Cold skies, keen perils, brace his life. 
       Methinks I see from rampined town
     Some battling tyrant’s matron wife,
       Some maiden, look in terror down,—­
     “Ah, my dear lord, untrain’d in war! 
       O tempt not the infuriate mood
     Of that fell lion! see! from far
       He plunges through a tide of blood!”
     What joy, for fatherland to die! 
       Death’s darts e’en flying feet o’ertake,
     Nor spare a recreant chivalry,
       A back that cowers, or loins that quake. 
     True Virtue never knows defeat: 
       Her robes she keeps unsullied still,
     Nor takes, nor quits, her curule seat
       To please a people’s veering will. 
     True Virtue opens heaven to worth: 
       She makes the way she does not find: 
     The vulgar crowd, the humid earth,
       Her soaring pinion leaves behind. 
     Seal’d lips have blessings sure to come: 
       Who drags Eleusis’ rite to day,
     That man shall never share my home,
       Or join my voyage:  roofs give way
     And boats are wreck’d:  true men and thieves
       Neglected Justice oft confounds: 
     Though Vengeance halt, she seldom leaves
       The wretch whose flying steps she hounds.


Justum et tenacem.

     The man of firm and righteous will,
       No rabble, clamorous for the wrong,
     No tyrant’s brow, whose frown may kill,
       Can shake the strength that makes him strong: 
     Not winds, that chafe the sea they sway,
       Nor Jove’s right hand, with lightning red: 
     Should Nature’s pillar’d frame give way,
       That wreck would strike one fearless head. 
     Pollux and roving Hercules
       Thus won their way to Heaven’s proud steep,
     ’Mid whom Augustus, couch’d at ease,
       Dyes his red lips with nectar deep. 
     For this, great Bacchus, tigers drew
       Thy glorious car, untaught to slave
     In harness:  thus Quirinus flew
       On Mars’ wing’d steeds from Acheron’s wave,
     When Juno spoke with Heaven’s assent: 
       “O Ilium, Ilium, wretched town! 
     The judge accurst, incontinent,
       And stranger dame have dragg’d thee down. 
     Pallas and I, since Priam’s sire
       Denied the gods his pledged reward,
     Had doom’d them all to sword and fire,
       The people and their perjured lord. 
     No more the adulterous guest can charm
       The Spartan queen:  the house forsworn
     No more repels by Hector’s arm
       My warriors, baffled and outworn: 
     Hush’d is the

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The Odes and Carmen Saeculare of Horace from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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