Obrazy na stronie

does not appear, however, to have been deficient in bravery, had been persuaded, for the security of his person, to retire before the battle to Brixellum ; a step which tended, as Tacitus has observed, to occasion his defeat. When he was insormed of the result of the conflict, he refused to make any farther effort for the empire, but put an end to his own life by falling upon his sword, at the age of 37 according to Tacitus (Hist., 2, 50), or of 38 according to Suetonius (Wit. Oth., c. 11), after reigning 95 days. Plutarch, in his life of Otho, relates that the soldiers immediately buried his body, that it might not be exposed to indignity by falling into the hands of his enemies, and erected a plain monument over his grave, with the simple inscription, “To the memory of Marcus Otho.” The early debaucheries of Otho threw a stain upon his reputation, which his good conduct in Lusitania and his mildness as emperor did not altogether remove. The treatment which he received from Nero might in some degree justify his rebellion against that prince; but no palliation can be found for the treason and cruelty with which he was chargeable towards Galba. In all things his actions were marked by a culpable extreme ; and perhaps both the good and the evil which appeared in his life were the result of circumstances rather than of virtuous principles or of fixed and incurable depravity. (Tacit., Hist., lib. 1 et 2. — Sueton., Wit. Othon. Plut., Wit. Othon.—Dio Cass., lib. 64.—Encycl. Us. Knowl., vol. 17, p. 59.- Encycl. Metropol, div. 3, vol. 2, p. 497, seqq.)—II. L. Roscius, a tribune of the commons, who, in the year that Cicero was consul, proposed and caused to be passed the well-known law which allowed the equestrian order particular seats in the theatre. The equites, previous to this, sat promiscuously with the commons. By this new regulation of Otho's, the commons considered themselves dishonoured, and hissed and insulted Otho when he appeared in the theatre: the equites, on the other hand, received him with loud plaudits. The commons repeated their hissings and the knights their applause, until at last they came to mutual reproaches, and the whole theatre presented a scene of the greatest disorder. Cicero, being informed of the disturbance, came and summoned the people to the temple of Bellona, where, partly by his reproofs and partly by his persuasive eloquence, he so wrought upon them that they returned to the theatre, loudly testified their approbation of Otho, and strove with the equites which should show him the most honour. The speech delivered on this occasion was afterward reduced to writing. It is now lost, but, having been delivered extempore, it affords a strong example of the persuasive nature of his eloquence. One topic which he touched on in this oration, and the only one of which we have any hint from antiquity, was his reproaching the rioters for their want of taste, in creating a tumult while Roscius was performing on the stage. (Livy, Epit., 99. – Horat., Epist., 1, 1, 62.-Jun., Sat., 3, 159.—Well. Palerc., 2, 32.-Fuss, Rom. Antiq., p. 147.) Othrys, a mountain-range of Thessaly, which, branching out of Tymphrestus, one of the highest points in the chain of Pindus, closed the great basin of Thessaly to the south, and served at the same time to divide the waters which flowed northward into the Peneus from those received by the Sperchius. This mountain is often celebrated by the poets of antiquity. (Eurip., Alcest., 583.-Theocr., Idyll., 3,43–Virg., AEm., 7,674.—Lucan, 6,337.) At present it is known by the different names of Hellovo, Variboro, and Gowra. (Pouqueville, vol. 3, p. 394. — Cramer's Anc. Greece, vol. 1, p. 412.) Otus and Ephialtes, sons of Neptune. Aloidae.) Ovidius NAso, P., a celebrated poet, born at Sulmo (now Sulmona), a town lying on the river Pescara, in the territory of the Peligni, at the distance of


ninety miles from Rome. Ovid came into the world A.U.C. 711, the memorable year in which Cicero was murdered, and on the very day when the two consuls, Hirtius and Pansa, sell at the battle of Mutina. The events of his life are chiefly known from his own writings, and more particularly from the tenth elegy of the fourth book of the Tristia. Ovid was of an equestrian family, and was brought to Rome at an early period of life, along with an elder brother, to be fully instructed in the arts and learning of the capital. (Trist., 4, 10.) He soon disclosed an inclination towards poetry; but he was for some time dissuaded from a prosecution of the art by his father, whose chief object was to make him an accomplished orator and patron, and thereby open up to him the path to civic honours. The time was indeed past when political harangues from the rostra paved the way to the consulship or to the government of wealthy provinces; but distinction and emolument might yet be attained by eminence in judicial proceedings, and by such eloquence as the servile deliberations of the senate still permitted. Ovid, accordingly, seems to have paid considerable attention to those studies which might qualify him to shine as a patron in the Forum, or procure for him a voice in a submissive senate. He practised the art of oratory, and not without success, in the schools of the rhetoricians Arellius Fuscus and Porcius Latro, the two most eminent teachers of their time. Seneca, the rhetorician, who himself had heard him practising declamation before Fuscus, informs us, that he surpassed all his sellow-students in ingenuity: but he harangued in a sort of poetical prose; he was deficient in methodical arrangement, and he indulged too freely in digressions, as also in the introduction of the commonplaces of disputation. He rarely declaimed, moreover, except on ethical subjects; and preferred delivering those sort of persuasive harangues which have been termed Suasoria. (Senec., Controv., 2, 10.) After having assumed the Toga Virilis, and completed the usual course of rhetorical tuition at Rome, he proceeded to finish his education at Athens. It is not known whether he made much progress in philosophy during his stay in that city; but, from the tenour of many of his works, it appears probable that he had at least studied physics, and that in morals he had embraced the tenets of the Epicurean school. In company with AEmilius Macer, he visited the most illustrious cities of Asia (Ep. e Ponto, 2, 10); and on his way back to Rome he passed with him into Sicily. He remained nearly a year at Syracuse, and thence made several agreeable excursions through disferent parts of the island. After his return to Rome, and on attaining the suitable age, Ovid held successively several of the lower judicial offices of the state, and also frequently acted as arbiter, highly to the satisfaction of litigants whose causes he decided. (Trist., 2,93.) These avocations, however, were speedily relinquished. The father of Ovid had for some time restrained his son's inclination towards poetry ; but the arguments he deduced against its cultivation, from the stale example of the poverty of Homer (Trist., 4, 10), were now receiving an almost practical refutation in the court favour and affluence of Virgil and Horace. The death, too, of his elder brother, by leaving Ovid sole heir to a fortune ample enough to satisfy his wants, finally induced him to abandon the profession to which he had been destined, and bid adieu at once to public affairs and the clamours of the Forum. Henceforth, accordingly, Ovid devoted himself to the service of the Muses; though he joined with their purer worship the enjoyment of all those pleasures o

life which a capital, the centre of every folly and amusement, could afford. He possessed an agreeable villa and extensive farm in the neighbourhood of Sulmo, the place of his birth; but he resided chiefly at his house on the Capitoline Hill (Trist., I, 3), or his gardens, which lay a little beyond the city, at the junction of the Clodian and Flaminian Ways, near the Pons Milvius, where he composed many of his verses. He was fond, indeed, of the rural pleasures of flowers and trees, but he chiefly delighted to sow and plant them in these suburban gardens. (Ep. e Ponto, 1,8.) Far from hiding himself amid his groves, like the melancholy Tibullus, he courted society, and never was happier than amid the bustle of the capital. One day, when Augustus, in his capacity of censor, according to ancient custom, made the whole body of Roman knights pass before him in review, he presented our poet with a beautiful steed. (Tristia, 2, 89.) The gift was accounted a peculiar mark of favour, and shows that, at the time when it was bestowed, he had incurred no moral stain which merited the disapprobation of his prince. While frequenting the court of Augustus, Ovid was well received by the politest of the courtiers. The titles of many of the epistles written during his banishment, show that they were addressed to persons well known to us, even at this distance of time, as distinguished statesmen and imperial favourites. Messala, to whose house he much resorted, had early encouraged the rising genius, and directed the studies of Ovid ; and the friendship which the father had extended to our poet was continued to him by the sons. But his chief patron was Q. Fabius Maximus, long the friend of Augustus, and, in the closing scenes of that prince's life, the chief confidant of his weaknesses and domestic sorrows. (Tacit., Ann., 1, 5.) Nor was Ovid's acquaintance less with the celebrated poets of his age than with its courtiers and senators. Virgil, indeed, he had merely seen, and premature death cut off the society of Tibullus; but Horace, Macer, and Propertius were long his familiar friends, and often communicated to him their writings previous to publication. While blessed with so many friends, he seems to have been undisturbed, at least during this period of his life, by the malice of a single foe: neither the court favour he enjoyed nor his poetical renown procured him enemies; and he was never assailed by that spirit of envy and detraction by which Horace had been persecuted. His poetry was universally popular (Tristia, 1, 1,64): like the stanzas of Tasso, it was often sung in the streets or at entertainments; and his verses were frequently recited in the theatre amid the applause of the multitude. Among his other distinctions, Ovid was a favourite of the fair, with whom his engagements were numerous and his intercourse unrestrained. (Am., 2, 4. — Tristia, 4, 10, 65.) He was extremely susceptible of love, and his love was ever changing. His first wife, whom he married when almost a boy, was unworthy of his affections, and possessed them but a short while. The second, who came from the country of the ancient Falisci, led a blameless life, but was soon repudiated. After parting with her, Ovid was united to a third, who was of the Fabian family. In her youth she had been the companion of Marcia, the wife of Tabius Maximus, and a favourite of Marcia's mother, who was the maternal aunt of Augustus. She was a widow at the time of her marriage with Ovid, and had a daughter by her former husband, who was married to Suillius, the friend of Germanicus. (Ep. e Ponto, 4, 8.) But these successive legitimate connexions did not prevent him from forming others of a different description. Corinna, a wanton, enticing beauty, whose real name and family the commentators and biographers of our poet have ineffectually laboured to discover, allured him in his early youth from the paths of rectitude. It is quite improbable that Corinna denoted Julia, the daughter of Augustus, and impossible that she represented Julia, his granddaughter, who was but an infant when Ovid recorded his amours with Corinna. Ovid passed nearly thirty years in the voluptuous enjoyment of the pleasures of the capital, blessed

with the smiles of fortune, honoured with the favour of his prince, and fondly anticipating a tranquil old age. (Tristia, 4, 8, 29.) He now remained at Rome the last of the constellation of poets which had brightened the earlier age of Augustus. That prince had by this time lost his favourite ministers, Maecenas and Agrippa : he was less prosperous than during former years in the external affairs of the empire, and less prudently advised in his domestic concerns: he was insidiously alienated from his own family, and was sinking in his old age under the sway of the imperious Livia and the dark-souled Tiberius. Ovid's friendships lay chiefly among those who supported the lineal descendants of Augustus, the unfortunate offspring of Julia and Agrippa. He thus became an object of suspicion to the party in power, and had lost many of those benefactors who might have shielded him from the storm which now unexpectedly burst on his head, and swept from him every hope and comfort for the remainder of his existence. It was in the year 762, and when Ovid had reached the age of 51, that Augustus suddenly banished him from Rome to a wild and distant corner of the empire. Ovid has derived nearly as much celebrity from his misfortunes as his writings; and, having been solely occasioned by the vengeance of Augustus, they have reflected some dishonour on a name which would otherwise have descended to posterity as that of a generous and almost universal protector of learning and poetry. The real cause of his exile is the great problem in the literary history of Rome, and has occasioned as much doubt and controversy as the imprisonment of Tasso by Alphonso has created in modern Italy. The secret unquestionably was known to many persons in Rome at the time (Tristia, 4, 10. — Compare Ep. c. Ponto, 2, 6); but, as its discovery had deeply wounded the feelings of Augustus (Tristia, 2, 209), no contemporary author ventured to disclose it. Ovid himself has only dared remotely to allude to it, and when he does mention it, his hints and suggestions are scarcely reconcilable with each other, sometimes speaking of his offence as a mistake or chance, in which he was more unfortunate than blameable, and at other times as if his life might have been forfeited without injustice. (Tristia, 5, 11.) No subsequent writer thought of revealing or investigating the mystery till it was too late, and it seems to be now closed for ever within the tomb of the Caesars. The most ancient opinion (to which Sidonius Apollinaris resers) is, that Ovid was banished for having presumed to love Julia, the daughter of Augustus, and for having celebrated her under the name of Corinna (Sidon. Apoll., Carm, 23, v. 158); and it was considered as a confirmation of this opinion, that exile was the punishment inflicted on Sempronius, the most known and best beloved of all her paramours. This notion was adopted by Crinitus and Lylius Gyraldus; but it was refuted as early as the time of Aldus Manutius, who has shown from the writings of Ovid that he was engaged in the amour with his pretended Corinna in his earliest youth ; and it certainly is not probable that such an intrigue should have continued for about thirty years, and till Ovid had reached the age of fifty-one, or that Augustus should have been so slow in discovering the intercourse which subsisted. Julia, too, was banished to Pandataria in the year 752, which was nine years before the exile of Ovid : and why should his punishment have been delayed so long after the discovery of his transgression 1 Besides, had he been guilty of such an offence, would he have dared in his Tristia, when soliciting his recall from banishment, to justify his morals to the emperor, and to declare that he had committed an involuntary error! Or would he have been befriended and supported in exile by the greatest men of Rome, some of whom were the favourites and counsellors of Augustus —o o the time of Manutius, various other theories have been devised to account for the exile of Ovid. Dryden, in the Preface to his translation of Ovid's Epistles, thinks it probable that “he had stumbled by some inadvertency on the privacies of Livia, and had seen aer in a bath ; for the words “sine weste Dianam,” he remarks, agree better with Livia, who had the same of chastity, than with either of the Julias.” It would no doubt appear that our poet had a practice of breaking in unseasonably on such occasions (A. A., 3, 245). But it is not probable that Augustus would have punished such an offence so severely, or that it would have affected him so deeply. Livia, at the time of Ovid's banishment, had reached the age of sixty-four, and was doubtless the only person in the empire who would consider such an intrusion as intentional.—Ti. raboschi has maintained, at great length, that he had been the involuntary and accidental witness of some moral turpitude committed by one of the imperial family, most probably Julia, the granddaughter of Augustus, who had inherited the licentious disposition of her inother, and was banished from Rome on account of her misconduct, nearly at the same time that the sentence of exile was pronounced on Ovid. This theory, on the whole, seems the most plausible, and most consistent with the hints dropped by the poet himself. He repeatedly says, that the offence for which he had been banished was a folly, an error, an imprudence rather than a crime: using the words stultitia and error in opposition to crimen and factnus. (Tristia, 1, 2, 100, et passim.) He invariably talks of what he had seen as the cause of his misfortunes (Tristia, 2, 103, seqq.), and he admits that what he had seen was a fault. But he farther signifies, that the fault he had witnessed was of a description which offended modesty, and which, therefore, ought to be cövered with the veil of night. (Tristia, 3, 6.) It is by no means improbable that he should have detected the granddaughter of the emperor in some disgraceful intrigue. Neither of the Julias confined their amours to the recesses of their palaces, so that the most dissolute frequenter of the lowest scenes of debauchery may have became the witness of her turpitude. Farther, it is evident that it was something of a private nature, and which wounded the most tender feelings of Augustus, who, we know from history, was peculiarly sensitive with regard to the honour of his family. Lastly, it appears, that, after being a witness of the shameful transgression of Julia, Ovid had fallen into some indiscretion through timidity (Ep. e Ponto, 2, 2), which might have been avoided, had he enjoyed the benefit of good advice (Tristia, 3, 6, 13); and it seems extremely probable, that the imprudence he committed was in revealing to others the discovery he had made, and concealing it from Augustus.—It is not likely that any better guess will now be formed on the subject. Another, however, has been recently atteinpted by M. Villenave, in a life of Ovid prefixed to a French translation of the Metamorphoses. His opinion, which has also been adopted by Schöll (Hist. Lit. Rom, vol. 1, p. 240), is, that Ovid, from accident or indiscretion, had become possessed of some state secret concerning Agrippa Posthumus, the son of Agrippa and Julia, and grandson of Augustus. The existence of the family of Julia long formed the great obstacle to the ambition of Livia and her son Tiberius. Agrippa Posthumus, the last surviver of the race, was banished from Rome to the island of Planasia, near Corsica, in 758; but considerable apprehensions seem to have been entertained by Livia that he might one day be recalled., Ovid, in a poetical epistle from Pontus, written in the fifth year of his exile, accuses himself as the cause of the death of his friend Fabius Maximus; and this Fabius Maximus, it appears, was the chief confidant of the emperor in all that related to the affairs of Agrippa, which he wished concealed

from Livia. A few months before his own death, Augustus, attended by Fabius Maximus alone, privately visited Agrippa in his retirement of Planasia; and the object of his journey from Rome having been discovered by Livia, the death of this counsellor followed shortly after. It will be remarked, however, that this voyage was undertaken in 666, four years subsequently to the exile of Ovid, and was disclosed through the indiscretion of the wife of Fabius. (Tacit., Ann., 1, 5.) But the French author conjectures, that the scene to which Ovid alludes in his writings as having witnessed, had some close connexion with the ensuing visit to Planasia, and gave a commencement to those suspicions which terminated in the death of his friend. His chief objection to the theory of Tiraboschi is, that Augustus would not have banished Ovid for discovering or revealing the disgrace of Julia, when, by her exile, he had already proclaimed her licentiousness to the whole Roman people. But, in fact, Ovid was not banished for the sake of concealment. The discovery which proved so fatal to himself was no secret at Rome; and, had secrecy been the emperor's object, banishment was the very worst expedient to which he could have resorted. Ovid might better have been bribed to silence ; or, if sentence of death could have served the purpose more effectually, the old triumvir would not have scrupled to pronounce it. The secret, however, was already divulged, and was in the mouths of the citizens. Ovid was therefore exiled as a punishment for his temerity, as a precaution against farther discoveries, and to remove from the imperial eye the sight of one whose presence must have reminded Augustus of his disgrace both as a sovereign and parent.—Whatever may have been the real cause of the exile of Ovid, the pretext for it was the licentious verses he had written. (Ep. e Ponto, 2, 9.) Augustus affected a regard for public morals; and concealing, on this occasion, the true motive by which he was actuated, he claimed a merit with the senate, and all who were zealous for a reformation of manners, in thus driving from the capital a poet who had reduced licentiousness to a system, by furnishing precepts, deduced from his own practice, which might aid the inexperienced in the successful prosecution of lawless love. He carefully excluded from the public libraries not merely the “Art of Love,” but all the other writings of Ovid. (Tristia, 3, 1, 65.) It is evident, however, that this was all colour and pretext. Ovid himself ventures gently to hint, that Augustus was not so strict a moralist that he would seriously have thought of punishing the composition of a few licentious verses with interminable exile. (Tristia, 2, 524.) In point of expression, too, the lines of Ovid are delicate compared with those of Horace, whom the emperor had always publicly favoured and supported. Nor was his sentence of banishment passed until many years after their composition; yet, though so long an interval had elapsed, it was suddenly pronounced, as on the discovery of some recent crime, and was most rapidly carried into execution. The . mandate for his exile arrived unexpectedly in the evening. The night preceding his departure from Rome was one of the utmost grief to his family, and of consternation and dismay to himself. In a fit of despair, he burned the copy of the Metamorphoses which he was then employed in correcting, and some others of his poems. He made no farther preparations for his journey, but passed the time in loud complaints, and in adjuration to the gods of the Capitol. His chief patron, Fabius Maximus, was absent at the time, and his only daughter was with her husband in Africa; but several of his friends came to his house, where they remained part of the night, and endeavoured, though in vain, to console him. After much irresolution, he at length departed on the approach of dawn, his dress neglected and his hair disbevelled.

His wife, who had wished to accompany him, but was stances wanting in his fate which might have connot permitted, fainted the moment he left the house. tributed to impart consolation. His third wife, to —After his departure from Rome, Ovid proceeded to whom he was tenderly attached, though not permitted Brundisium, where he had an interview with Fabius to accompany him on the voyage to Scythia, continued Maximus. He recommended his wife to the care of faithful to her husband during his long exile, and prohis friend, and received repeated assurances of his tected his property from the rapacity of his enemies. support—The destined spot of his perpetual exile was (Tristia, 1, 5.) Many of his friends remained unshaTomi, the modern Temis war, on the shore of the Eux- ken by his misfortunes, and from time to time he reine, a few miles to the south of the spot where the ceived letters from them, giving him hopes of recall. most southern branch of the Danube unites with that The Gette, though they at length became displeased sea. (Vid. Tomi.) The place had been originally an with his incessant complaints of their country (Ep. e Athenian colony, and was still inhabited by a few Ponto, 4, 14), received him at first with kindness and remains of the Greeks, but it was chiefly filled with sympathy, and long paid him such distinguished honrude and savage barbarians, of whose manners and ours, that he almost appears to have realized the sahabits the poet draws a most vivid description. The bles of Orpheus and Amphion, in softening their native town was defended by but feeble ramparts from the ferocity by the magic of the Roman lyre. (Ep. e Ponincursions of the neighbouring Getae, or still more to, 4, 9–Ibid., 4, 14.)—Nothing, however, could formidable tribes to the north of the Danube. Alarms compensate for the deprivations he suffered; nor was from the foe were constant, and the poet himself had anything omitted on Ovid's part which he thought sometimes to grasp a sword and buckler, and place a might prevail on the emperor to recall him to Rome, helmet on his gray head, on a signal given by the sen- or assign him, at least, a place of milder exile; and tinel (Tristia, 4, 1, 73), when squadrons of barbarians Sicily was particularly pointed at as a suitable spot covered the desert which Tomi overlooked, or sur- for such a mitigation of punishment. (Tristia, 5, 2.) rounded the town in order to surprise and pillage it.— . This is the object of all his epistles from Pontus, the Without books or society, Ovid often wished for a name of the district of Moesia in which Tomi was sitfield (Ep. e Ponto, 1, 8) to remind him of the garden uate, and not to be confounded with the Pontus of near the Flaminian Way, in which, in his happier Asia Minor. He flattered Augustus during his life days, he had breathed his love-sighs and composed his with an extravagance which bordered on idolatry (Ep. amorous verses. Some of the barbarian inhabitants e Ponto, 4, 6–Tristia, 2); and the letters addresswere along with our poet in the small and inconvenient ed to his friends inculcate skilful lessons of choosing house which he inhabited (Tristia, 2, 200). and kept the most favourable opportunities for propitiating the him in a state of constant alarm by their ferocious ap-idespot. It does not appear, however, that any one of pearance. They neither cut their beards nor hair, his numerous and powerful acquaintances ventured to which, hanging dishevelled over the face, gave a pecu- solicit his recall, or to entreat Augustus in his behalf. liar horror to their aspect. The whole race were | Yet the poet seems to suppose that Augustus, preclothed in the shaggy skins of various animals (Tristia, vious to his decease, was beginning to feel more 3, 10), and each barbarian carried with him constantly favourably towards him. (Ep. e Ponto, 4, 6.) After * bow, and a quiver containing poisoned arrows. the death of the emperor, with a view, doubtless, of {Tristia, 5, 7.) They daily filled the streets with tu- propitiating his successor, Ovid wrote a poem on his mult and uproar, and even the litigants sometimes de- || Apotheosis, and consecrated to him, as a new deity, cided their cause before the tribunals by the sword. a temple, where he daily repaired to offer incense and (Tristia, 5, 10.) But if there was danger within the worship. (Ep. e Ponto, 4, 9) Nor was he sparing walls of Tomi, destruction lay beyond them. Tribes, in his panegyrics on the new emperor (Ep. e Ponto, who foraged from a distance, carried off the flocks and 4, 13); but he found Tiberius equally inexorable with burned the cottages. From the insecurity of property Augustus —The health of Ovid had been early and and severity of climate, the fields were without grain, severely affected by his exile and confinement at Toml. the hills without vines, the mountains without oaks, He was naturally of a feeble constitution, and, in the and the banks without willows. (Tristia, 3, 10, 71.) | place of his banishment, every circumstance was comAbsinthium, or wormwood, alone grew up and covered bined which could wear out the mind and the body. the plains. (Ep. e Ponto, 4, 8.) Spring brought | The rigour of the climate bore hard on one who had with it neither birds nor flowers. In summer the sun passed a delicate youth of pleasure and repose under rarely broke through the cloudy and foggy atmosphere. an Italian sky. In consequence, soon after his arrival The autumn shed no fruits; but, through every season at Tomi, he totally lost his strength and appetite (Ep. of the year, wintry winds blew with prodigious vio- e Ponto, 1, 10), and became thin, pale, and exhaustlence (Tristia, 3, 10, 17), and lashed the waves of the ed. From time to time he recovered and relapsed, boisterous Euxine on its desert shore. (Tristia, 4, till at length, at the age of 60, he sunk under the 4, 57.) The only animated object was the wild Sar- hardships to which he had been so long subjected. matian driving his car, yoked with oxen, across the His death happened in the year 771, in the ninth year ... snows, or the frozen depths of the Euxine (Tristia, 3, of his exile, and the fourth of the reign of Tiberius. 10, 32), clad in his fur cloak, his countenance alone | Before his decease, he expressed a wish that his ashes uncovered, his beard glistening and sparkling with the might be carried to Rome; even this desire, however, hoar-frost and flakes of snow. (Tristia, 3, 10, 21.) was not complied with. His bones were buried in —Such was the spot for which Ovid was compelled the Scythian soil, and the Getae erected to him a monto exchange the theatres, the baths, the porticoes, and ument near the spot of his earthly sojourn.—It would gardens of Rome, the court of Augustus, the banks of seem that Ovid had commenced his poetical career the Tiber, and the sun and soil of Italy.—While thus with some attempt at heroic subjects, particularly the driving him to the most remote and savage extremity Gigantomachia. But he soon directed his attention of his empire, Augustus softened the sentence he had from such topics to others which were more consonant bronounced on Ovid with some alleviating qualifica- to his disposition. Accordingly, the earliest writings ions. He did not procure his condemnation by a de- of Ovid now extant are amatory elegies in the style eree of the senate, but issued his own mandate, in of Tibullus and Propertius. These elegies are styled which he employed the word “relegation” (relegatio), Amores, amounting in all to forty-nine, and were oriand not “banishment” (ersilium), leaving him, by this ginally divided by the poet into five books. There thoice of terms, the enjoyment of his paternal fortune are now only three books in the printed editions of and some other privileges of a Roman citizen. (Tris- |Ovid ; but it has been doubted whether all the elegies sia, 5, 11, 21.--1bid., 4, 9.) Nor were other circum- he wrote be still included in this * or if two

books have been suppressed. These elegies, with a very few exceptions, are of an amatory description.— As an elegiac writer, Ovid has more resemblance to Propertius than to Tibullus. His images and ideas are for the most part drawn from the real world. He dwells not amid the visionary scenes of Tibullus, he indulges not in his melancholy dreams, nor pours forth such tenderness of feeling as the lover of Delia. The Amores of Ovid have all the brilliancy and freshness of the period of life in which they were written. They are full of ingenious conceptions, graceful images, and agreeable details. These are the chief excellences of the elegies of Ovid. Their faults consist in an abuse of the facility of invention, a repetition of the same ideas, an occasional affectation and antithesis in the language of love, and (as in the elegies of Propertius) the too frequent, and sometimes not very happy or appropriate, allusion to mythological fables.—Before finishing the elegies styled Amores, Ovid had already commenced the composition of the Heroides (Am., 2, 18), which are likewise written in the elegiac measure. They are epistles supposed to be addressed chiefly from queens and princesses who figured in the heroic ages, to the objects of their vehement affections, and are in number not fewer than twenty-one; but there is some doubt with regard to the authenticity of six of them, namely, Paris to Helen, Helen to Paris; Leander to Hero, Hero to Leander; Acontius to Cydippe, Cydippe to Acontius. These six, though they appear in the most ancient MSS. under the name of Ovid, along with the others, are of doubtful authenticity, and have been generally ascribed by commentators to Aulus Sabinus, a friend of Ovid's, who was also the author of several answers to the epistles of our poet, as Ulysses to Penelope, and AEneas to Dido.—The Heroides present us with some of the finest and most popular fictions of an amorous antiquity, resounding with the names of Helen, Ariadne, and Phaedra. Julius Scaliger pronounces them to be the most polished of all the productions of Ovid. (Poet., 6, 7.) But there is a tiresome uniformity in the situations and characters of the heroines. The injudicious length to which each epistle is extended has occasioned a repetition in it of the same ideas ; while the ceaseless tone of complaints uttered by these forsaken damsels has o a monotony, which renders a perusal, at east of the whole series of epistles, insupportably fatiguing. There is also a neglect of a due observance of the manners and customs of the heroic ages: and in none of the works of Ovid is his indulgence in exuberance of fancy so remarkable to the reader, because many of the epistles, as those of Penelope, Briseis, Medea, Ariadne, and Dido, lead us to a comparison of the Latin author with Homer, the Greek tragedians, Catullus, and Virgil, those poets of true simplicity and unaffected tenderness. The work of Ovid entitled De Arte Amandi, or, more properly, Artis Amatoria Liber, is written, like the Amores and Heroides, in the elegiac measure. There is nothing, however, elegiac in its subject, as it merely communicates, in a light and often sportive manner, those lessons in the Art of Love which were the fruits of the author's experience, and had been acquired in the course of the multifarious intrigues recorded in the Amores. This poem was not written earlier than the year 752; for the author mentions in the first book the representation of a sea-fight between the Greek and Persian fleets, which was exhibited at that period in the Naumachia, under the direction of Augustus. The whole work is divided into three books. —This work is curious and useful, from the information it affords concerning Roman manners and antiquities in their lighter departments; and, though not written in the tone or form of satire, it gives us nearly the same insight as professed satirical productions into the minor follies of the A gustan age. Whatever

object the poet may have had in view when composing this work, it may be safely concluded that the poem itself did not in any degree tend to the corruption of the morals of his fellow-citizens, since the indulgence of every vice was then so licensed at Rome that they could hardly receive any additional stain; on the contrary, this very depravation of manners gave birth to the work of Ovid, suggested its pernicious counsels, and obtained for it the popularity with which it was crowned.—The book De Remedio Amoris is connected with that De Arte Amandi, and was written a short while after it. This poem discloses the means by which those who have been unsuccessful in love, or are enslaved by it to the prejudice of their health and fortune, may be cured of their passion. Occupation, travelling, society, and a change of the affections, if possible, to some other object, are the remedies on which the author chiefly relies. This work, on the whole, is not so pleasant and entertaining as the De Arte Amandi. It is almost entirely destitute of those agreeable episodes by which the latter poem is so much beautified and enlivened. It has fewer sportive touches and fewer fascinating descriptions.—The Metamorphoses of Ovid had been composed by him previous to his exile. But he received the mandate for his relegation while yet employed in the task of correction, and when he had completed this labour only on the first three books. Finding himself thus condemned to banishment from Rome, he threw the work into the flames, partly from vexation and disgust at his verses in general, which had been made the pretext for his punishment, and partly because he considered it an unfinished poem, which he could no longer have any opportunity or motive for perfecting. (Tristia, 1, 6.) Fortunately, however, some transcripts had been previously made by his friends of this beautiful production, which was thus preserved to the world. After Ovid's departure from Rome, these quickly passed into extensive circulation; they were generally read and admired, and a copy was placed in his library, which was still preserved and kept up by his family. (Tristia, 1, 1, 118.) In the depths of his dreary exile, Ovid learned, perhaps not without satisfaction, that his work had been saved ; and he even expressed a wish that some of his favourite passages might meet the eye of Augustus. (Tristia, 2, 557.) But he was annoyed by the recollection that the poem would be read in the defective state in which he had left it. (Tristia, 3, 14, 23.) He had no copy with him at Tomi, on which he could complete the corrections which he had commenced at Rome. He therefore thought it necessary to apprize his friends in Italy, that the work had not received his last emendations; and, as an apology for its imperfections, he proposes that the six following lines should be prefixed as a motto to the copies of his Metamorphoses which were then circulating in the capital. (Tristia, 1, 6.)

“Orba parente suo quicumque volumina tangis;
His saltem vestra detur in urbe locus.
Quoque magis fareas, non hac sunt edita ab opso,
Sed quasi de domini funere rapta sui.
Quicquid in his igntur citii rude carmen habcbit,
Emendaturus, silicuisset, eral.”

The Metamorphoses, therefore — at least the twelve concluding books—should be read with some degree of that indulgence which is given to the last six books of the Æneid; though, from what we see in the perfected works of Ovid, it can hardly be supposed that, even if he had been permitted, he would have expunged conceits and retrenched redundancies with the pure taste and scrupulous judgment of the Mantuan bard. —In the composition of his Metamorphoses, Ovid can lay no claim to originality of invention. Not one of the immense number of transmutations which he has recorded, from the first separation of Chaos till uns

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