Sunday, September 14, 2014


Marcantonio Flaminio's Hymn to Pan

Marcantonio Flaminio (1498-1550) hasn't yet appeared in I Tatti Renaissance Library. Some of his poems are translated (completely or partly) by Carol Maddison in her book Marcantonio Flaminio: Poet, Humanist and Reformer (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1965). One of the poems partly translated, partly summarized, is a hymn to Pan (pp. 59-65). Maddison has translated lines 6-20, 31-55, 61-65, 76-90, and 111-125 of this hymn. I have translated the remaining lines (1-5, 21-30, 56-60, 66-75, and 91-110) below and combined them with Maddison's translation.
Enough already have I sung of the savage
Battles of kings: come now,
Pierian mother, what god
Will I fittingly sing about,
As I sweetly strum the Aeolian lyre?        5

You, guardian of the woolly
Flock and of the burgeoning woods,
Who love the black back
Of Maenalus and the topmost temples
Of chill Lycaeus?        10

Nymphs, sing of the half-animal son
Of Jove, sing of goat-footed
Pan, the leader of the nimble
Choral dances with the Dryads
In the lofty woods.        15

Hear how the god shatters the loved silence
With his song that wanders in the night.
See, 'Io', he comes,
Shaking the crown of pines
On his wild head.        20

Hasten hither, undefiled
Maidens and pure youths,
But you whose minds are disturbed by
Vicious crimes, stay far
Away from here, you impious ones.        25

May complaints also stay away,
And sorrow mixed with tears:
Here the day should be spent in
Joyful dances, here light song should be
Poured forth with ringing voice.        30

O Pan, father of the Naiads,
With a pack of dogs at your side
You drive the wild lynxes
Through the pathless mountains
And the secret valleys.        35

The father of gods and men
Made you the lord of the woods
From the place where the rosy day rises
To where it sets, drowned in the sea's
Red waves.        40

You give the herds the flowing fountains
They need and the grass they delight in,
You are called the mighty protector
Of sheep, you load their soft fleeces
With glistening wool.        45

The lambs that you once have looked upon,
Holy one, with your pious gaze,
Will not be carried off from the stable
By the enemy wolf nor harmed
By outbreaks of disease.        50

Blessed are the leaves of the groves
Which have heard you singing your songs
On your sweet flute when dewy
Evening brought forth
The sliding stars.        55

Then the all-seeing stars of
Undefiled night shine more clearly;
Then Zephyrus' breezes are silent;
Then the earth decorates the fertile
Meadows with yellow flowers. 60

Not so sweetly sings the swan,
Dying in the water meadow,
Or the nightingale, when spring
Is in flower, lamenting in the deep
Shadows of the wood.        65

Then the wood nymphs, the goddesses,
In the place where rocky shade lies
Along clear fountains,
Dance in rhythm, and with light
Foot strike the ground three times.        70

But you, Pan, lead the dance,
You repeat the songs: everything
Resounds with joyful clapping,
And Echo, dweller in the groves,
Makes a noise in the deep valleys.        75

Soon the wearied bands of Dryads
Sit by the grassy bank
Of the river, where the swaying
Marjoram breathes abroad
Its sweet perfume.        80

And, while they gather apples red
And sweet, or wash their golden
Hair in the cool stream,
They sing at the same time, in
Their clear voices,        85

How Maia's brilliant son
Left the glittering stars
And the high halls of heaven
To pasture the snowy sheep
By the wandering streams,        90

Where the Cyllenian rock
Copiously waters the shade-bringing peak
With dark springs
And always supplies pleasing
Grass to the roaming flock.        95

Here the god, reclining on the
Soft bosom of golden-haired Dryope,
Prefers the leaf-bearing grove
To heaven, overcome (alas) by
Love's too violent wound.        100

But Dryope, happy after her
Nine-month-long sickness,
Brought forth from her womb a hoped-for
Burden. Scarcely had the boy breathed
The divine air of heaven        105

When the Dryads took flight, and his frightened
Mother took flight, for up to the waist
The baby was a foul-smelling goat,
And two horns stood out
On his red forehead.        110

Then his father carried him hidden
In a white fleece and came
To the threshold of mighty Jove.
Straightaway the ruler of boundless
Olympus laughed.        115

The gods above laughed, but Venus
Held the boy to her bosom and fed
Her gaze on the lovable monstrosity
And bestowed her treasured kisses
On his swollen brow.        120

Hail, ruler of the Naiads,
Hail, and drive away weeping
Disease and wretched famine
To the most distant homes of the Arabs
And the fierce Turks.        125
The Latin, from Hieronymi Fracastorii, et Marci Antonii Flaminii Carmina (Venice: Remondi, 1759), pp. 120-122 (line numbers added):
Jam satis cecini fera
Regum praelia: nunc age,
Mater Pieri, quem Deum,
Quem dulci Aeoliae fidis
Plectro rite canemus?        5

An te, lanigeri gregis
Silvarumque virentium
Custos, cui nigra Moenali
Terga, cui gelidi placent
Summa templa Lycaei?        10

Nymphae, semiferam Jovis
Prolem dicite, dicite
Pana capripedem, leves
Suetum cum Dryadis choros
Silvis ducere in altis.        15

En ut grata silentia
Cantu noctivago Deus
Rumpit; cernite, io, venit,
En venit capitis feri
Serta pinea quassans.        20

Huc concurrite, virgines
Intactae, & pueri integri:
At quibus scelera impia
Mentem sollicitant, procul
Hinc abeste, profani.        25

Absint & querimoniae,
Et mixtus lacrimis dolor:
Hic laetis choreis dies
Ducenda, hic leve tinnula
Carmen voce sonandum.        30

O Pan Najadum pater,
Qui per devia montium
Valliumque reconditarum
Agrestes agitas, canum
Cinctus agmine, lyncas:        35

Te divum, atque hominum sator
Silvarum dominum dedit
Esse, qua roseus dies
Surgit, quaque cadens rubris
Ponti mergitur undis.        40

Tu fontes liquidos gregi, &
Laeta pabula sufficis:
Tu custos ovium potens
Dictus, mollia candidis
Exples vellera lanis.        45

Quos tu, sancte, pio semel
Agnos lumine videris,
Illos nec stabulis lupus
Infestus rapiet, mala
Nec contagia laedent.        50

Felices nemorum comae,
Quae te, cum vaga roscidus
Vesper sidera protulit,
Dulci carmina fistula
Audivere canentem.        55

Tunc purae melius nitent
Noctis conscia sidera:
Tunc aurae Zephyri tacent:
Tunc laetas croceis humus
Spargit floribus herbas.        60

Non tam dulce sonat cadens
Udo in gramine cycnus, aut
Veris tempore floridi
Ales sub silvae querens
Densis Daulias umbris.        65

Ergo Hamadryades deae,
Limpidis ubi procubat
Umbra saxea fontibus,
Ludunt in numerum, & levi
Campos ter pede pulsant.        70

Tu vero choream regens,
Cantus ingeminas: sonant
Laetis omnia plausibus,
Et cultrix nemorum gemit
Imis vallibus Echo.        75

Mox fessa Dryadum agmina
Propter gramineam sedent
Ripam fluminis, hic ubi
Dulcem mollis amaracus
Late spirat odorem.        80

Et dum suave rubentia
Carpunt mala, vel aureos
Crines frigidulis aquis
Immergunt, liquida simul
Voce carmina dicunt.        85

Ut fulgentia sidera
Et magnas superum domos
Linquens, ad vaga flumina
Paverit niveas oves
Majae clara propago,        90

Qua Cyllenia verticem
Rupes umbriferum nigris
Late fontibus irrigat,
Et gratas pecori vago
Semper sufficit herbas.        95

Hic flavae Dryopes sinu
In molli recubans Deus
Caelo frondiferum nemus
Praefert, heu nimium gravi
Victus vulnere amoris.        100

At felix Dryope, novem
Post fastidia mensium,
Optatum ex utero dedit
Pondus. Vix puer hauserat
Dias aetheris oras,        105

Fugerunt Dryades, parens
Fugit territa, nam inguinum
Tenus hircus olens erat
Infans, binaque flammea
Stabant cornua fronte.        110

Tunc illum genitor ferens
Albis pellibus abditum,
Ad magni solium Jovis
Venit: nec mora, risit im-
mensi rector Olympi:        115

Riserunt superi: at Venus
In sinu puerum tenens,
Visus pascit amabili
Monstro, grataque turgidae
Libat oscula fronti.        120

Salve o Naiadum potens,
Salve, & hinc lacrimabiles
Morbos, et miseram famem in
Extremas Arabum domos,
Et feros age Turcas.        125

Thanks to Karl Maurer for the following observations:
I seem to see two slight errors in the Latin (15, 31), and a few in Maddison's English (none in yours):
15 'cum Dryadis' can hardly be right. Perhaps Flaminio wrote 'Dryasin' (used twice in Propertius). By itself 'Dryadis' could mean 'of Dryas' (Martial 9.61.14) but 'cum' is plainly the preposition, so we need an ablative.
14-15 'suetum ... ducere' means not 'the leader of' but e.g. 'who likes to lead'.
31 'Najadum' is unmetrical; it should be 'Naïadum'...
32 'at your side' wrecks the image; it should be 'all around you' (I myself would rather do it literally and say 'surrounded by your pack of dogs').
78 'hic' ( = hîc) should not be just ignored, for it tells us that the poet himself is there.
79 'mollis' — why 'swaying'?! It means perhaps 'delicate'; I’d translate it predicatively and say e.g. 'where marjoram delicately emits far and wide its sweet scent'.
113 'solium' not 'threshold' but 'throne'.

<< Home
Newer›  ‹Older

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?