Thursday, March 19, 2015


Comic Catalogues of Love's Ills

Plautus, Mercator 18-19, 24-31 (tr. Wolfgang de Melo):
Well, normally all these vices go hand in hand with love: worry, distress, and excessive refinement....But the following things that I didn't mention also go hand in hand with love: sleeplessness, toil, uncertainty, fright, and flight. There's silliness, stupidity to boot and recklessness, mindless thoughtlessness, lack of moderation, petulance and lust, malevolence; laziness, greed, idleness, injustice, lack, disgrace and waste, over-talkativeness, under-talkativeness.

nam amorem haec cuncta vitia sectari solent,
cura, aegritudo, nimiaque elegantia.
sed amori accedunt etiam haec quae dixi minus:
insomnia, aerumna, error, [et] terror, et fuga:        25
ineptia , stultitiaque adeo et temeritas[t],
incogitantia excors, immodestia,
petulantia et cupiditas, malevolentia;
inertia, aviditas, desidia, iniuria,
inopia, contumelia et dispendium,        30
multiloquium, parumloquium.
Terence, Eunuchus 59-61 (tr. John Sargeaunt):
Love has in it all these evils: wrongs, jealousies, quarrels, reconcilements, war, then peace again.

in amore haec omnia insunt vitia: iniuriae,
suspiciones, inimicitiae, indutiae,        60
bellum, pax rursum.
See Keith Preston, Studies in the Diction of the Sermo Amatorius in Roman Comedy (Menasha: George Banta Publishing Company, 1916 = diss. University of Chicago, 1914), pp. 4-14.

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