“Uxor, Vivamus ceu Viximus et Teneamus…”

Came across this little Ausonian epigram. It’s resemblance to Catullus 5 will, I think, be obvious.


Uxor, vivamus ceu viximus, et teneamus

nomina quae primo sumpsimus in thalamo,

nec ferat ulla dies ut commutemur in aevo,

quin tibi sim iuvenis tuque puella mihi.

Nestore sim quamvis provectior aemulaque annis

vincas Cumanam tu quoque Deiphoben,

nos ignoremus quid sit matura senectus:

scire aevi meritum, non numerare decet.

Ausonius, Epigrammata, 20

Wife, let us live as we have lived, and keep

The names we took the day when first we wed,

And no day come when we be changed in age,

But that I should be your boy and you my girl.

Though I advanced as Nestor be, and you

Should catch or pass Deiphobe* in years,

Don’t let’s find out what old age really means:

It’s best to know its boon and not its number.

Ausonius, Epigrams, 20

*Cumana Deiphobe, as the Latin has it, or “Cumaean Deiphobe” (Koo-máy-in Day-íf-o-be), was the name of the Sibyl at Cumae, a Roman prophetess who was granted longevity, but not youth, by the god Apollo.


Thanks, dear reader, should you ever find me, for being my gadfly.


About philokalos

Philologist, historian, and lover of great books, I started this blog to keep myself alert to the beauty of what I see amid the demands of my work.
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