Ad Alpēs/X

E Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Fairytale left blue.png Caput IX Caput XI Fairytale right blue.png
CAPUT X

Posteā, mēnsīs remōtīs, cum lūmina accēnsa essent, Torquātus, quī iam sermonī vacābat,[1] ab omnibus interrogātus est dē itineribus suīs; nam longē et lātē terrā marīque iter solēbat facere, ac multa iūcunda et mīrābilia nārrāre poterat.

Ac Pūblius: “Sī nūper,” inquit, “per mare septentriōnāle[2] nāvigāstī, nōs docē, sīs, num[3] ea vēra sint, quae apud[4] Tacitum leguntur dē illō latere mundī.”

“Ego vērō,” inquit Torquātus, “nūper iter maximum sub septentriōnēs[5] fēcī; ac magna ex parte vērā esse ea repperī, quae apud Tacitum sunt.”

“Vērēne[6] igitur dīcuntur diērum spatia ibi maiōra esse quam in Ītaliā?” inquit Pūblius.

“Ita vērō,” inquit Torquātus. “Quīn etiam in Britanniā noctēs interdum tam sunt brevēs, ut in extrēmā parte īnsulae vix fīnem et initium diēī internōscere[7] possīs.[8] Ac sī nūbēs nōn officiant, quīdam adfirmant sōlis fulgōrem per noctem tōtam aspicī posse, neque eum occidere et surgere, sed velut[9] transīre.”

“Papae!” inquit Sextus. “Nōlim[10] diēs tam longōs esse. ‘ Puerīne ibi ad sōlis occāsum in lūdō retinentur?”

“Apud Britannōs,” inquit Torquātus rīdēns, “puerī equitant,[11] et armīs mīlitāribus exercentur. Ibi haec studia maximō in honōre sunt.” “Puerōs fēlīcēs!” inquit Sextus. “Exīstīmō mē aliquandō in illam īnsulam beātam migrātūrum.”

“Ego vellem[12] adfuissem,” inquit Pūblius, “cum Caesar prīmum Britanniam attigit. Quantā fuit virtūte ille signifer, quī in flūctūs dēsiluit suōsque in hostēs[13] dūxit!”

“Rēs ibi hodiē longē aliter sē habent,” inquit Torquātus. “Nullī bellātōrēs barbarī, in lītore congregātī,[14] advenās harēnā prohibent. Sed ubique tūtō mercātōrēs commeant[15] ultrō citrōque.”

“Aliāsne quoque in partēs iter nūper fecistī?” inquit Cornēlius.

“Maximē vērō,” inquit Torquātus. “Ē Britanniā profectus, usque ad Suionēs pervēnī. Ibi quoque noctēs tam brevēs sunt ut sōlis fulgor stēllās obscūret. Quīn etiam aliquōs audīvī, cum dīcerent[16] sē sōlis currum ē marī ēmergentem audīsse, atque fōrmās quoque equōrum vīdisse et capitis radiōs.”

“Illud est maius quam ut ego crēdam,”[17] inquit Sextus. “Tūne,[18] pater, tālia crēdis?”

“Illud quidem vix crēdibile est,” inquit Cornēlius. “Sed, Torquāte, cum loca tam multa adieris, age nunc, itinera tua ōrdine audiāmus.” Quā cohortātiōne inductus, Torquātus ōrdinem exposuit itinerum suōrum, ab eō tempore exōrsus, quō[19] eum novissimē[20] vīderant.

Iam autem līberīs erat tempus cubitum[21] eundī; ac Sextus et Cornēlia perinvītī cum mātre in conclāvia proxima sē recēpērunt. Tum Sextus: “Perrārō, māter, tū aliquid nōbīs nārrās. Minimē somnīculōsī[22] sumus, et libentissimē ā tē fābulam audiāmus.” “Sī paucīs verbīs contentī eritis,” inquit Drūsilla, “dē leōne fābulam vōbīs nārrābō.”

“Euax!” inquit Sextus. “Spērō rem fore cruentam, ut Cornēliā arte dormiat.”

“Nolī timēre, Cornēlia,” inquit māter. “Nihil sanguinis[23] effundētur.”

“Sanguinis iactūram ego dolēō,” inquit Sextus; “sed audiāmus.”

Tum Drūsilla: “Ōlim, cum Rōmae spectācula ēderentur magna, et multae bēstiae immānēs in harēnam immitterentur, quīdam hominēs miserī, capitis[24] damnātī, ēlectī erant, quī cum hīs mōnstrīs dēpugnārent;[25] in[26] quibus erat servus, quī Androclēs appellābātur.

“Maximē cōnspicuus[27] in harēnā erat leō eximius, quī aliās bēstiās omnēs vīribus et magnitūdine corporis longē superābat, quīque terrificō[28] fremitū oculōs omnium spectātōrum in sē saepe convertit. Is leō, cum Androclem aspexisset, prīmō quasi admīrāns paulisper stetit, tum lēniter et placidē ad eum accessit; deinde caudam[29] mōre canum clēmenter et blandē movēre coepit, ac postrēmō manūs hominis perterritī linguā suā permulcēbat.

“Hāc rē novā commōtus, imperātor iussit Androclem arcessī; ā quō quaesīvit cūr leō tam mīrābiliter eī pepercisset. Tum Androclēs rem mīrandam nārrāvit.

“Nam, ut dīcēbat, multō ante in Āfricā fuerat, cum dominus eam prōvinciam prōcōnsulārī[30] imperiō obtinēret;[31] cuius crūdēlitāte coāctus in loca dēserta postrēmō refūgit, ubi spēluncam latebrōsam[32] nactus[33] dēfessus quiēvit. “Brevī autem, subitō experrēctus, sēnsit leōnem ingentem in spēluncam intrāsse. Prīmō perterritus spem omnem salūtis dīmīsit; tum autem animadvertit leōnem claudum esse ex[34] spīnā magnā, quae in pede dēfīxa erat.

“Interim bēlua lēniter accessit et sublātum pedem ostendit, quasi hominis opem ita peteret. Tum Androclēs, quamvīs[35] perturbātus, spīnam dētrāxit; et deinde per triennium[36] et homō et leō in spēluncā habitāvērunt, cum interim leō cottīdiē vēnātum[37] abīret, et homō, quī ignis cōpiam habēret nūllam, carnem merīdiānō[38] torrēret sōle.

“Sed ōlim Androclēs, quī forte ē spēluncā exierat, ā mīlitibus comprehēnsus ad dominum Rōmam missus est; ubi, ut[39] fugitīvus, ad bēstiās est damnātus. Quō modō factum est ut leō, quī quoque interim captus erat, in harēnā amīcum prīstinum laetus agnōsceret.”

Dum haec nārrantur, Pūblius, quī librum quendam quaerēbat, in conclāve intrāverat, et ille: “Cum tālia dē bestiīs audiō,” inquit, “admoneor dē verbīs poētae Vergilī, quī cecinit[40] quam mīrandae rēs futūrae essent, cum iterum aetās aurea in terrās rediisset:

“‘Ipsae[41] lacte[42] domum referent distenta capellae
Ūbera, nec magnōs metuent armenta[43] leōnēs.’”

“ Ac Cornēlia: “Et ego admoneor,” inquit, “dē fābulā, quam Anna nūper dē vāte nārrāvit, quī incolumīs in spēluncā leōnum plēna noctem perēgit.”

Tum, cum grātiae mātrī āctae essent, līberī cubitum iērunt.

——————————
References
  1. vacō, -āre, -āvī, -ātum, intr.,, be at leisure (for)
  2. septentriōnālis, -e, adj., northern.
  3. num, whether.
  4. apud: cf. VII, 16.
  5. septentriōnēs, -um, m., (constellation of the) Great Bear.
  6. Vērēne: ie., Vērē + ne.
  7. internōscō, -nōscere, -nōvī, -nōtus, tr., distinguish.
  8. possīs: subj. indef. second sing.
  9. velut, as it were.
  10. Nōlim: potential subjv.
  11. equitō, -āre, -āvi, -ātum, intr., ride.
  12. vellem: cf. I, 58.
  13. hostēs: drawn up on the shore to prevent a landing.
  14. congregō, -āre, -āvī, -ātus, tr., gather.
  15. commeō, -āre, -āvī, -ātum, intr., travel.
  16. cum dicerent: i.e., dicentēs.
  17. maius quam ut … crēdam, too much for me to believe.
  18. Tūne: i.e., + ne.
  19. quō: i.e., when.
  20. novissimē, adv., last.
  21. cubitum: supine.
  22. somnīculōsus, -a, -um, adj. sleepy.
  23. sanguinis: partit. gen.
  24. capitis, to death; gen. of penalty.
  25. dēpugnārent: note mood
  26. in, among
  27. cōnspicuus, -a, -um, adj., conspicuous
  28. terrificus, -a, -um, adj., terrible.
  29. cauda, -ae, f., tail.
  30. prōcōnsulāris, -e, adj., proconsular, indicating that the povenor: was of the rank of ex-consul.
  31. obtineō, -tinēre, -tinuī, -tentus, tr., govern.
  32. latebrōsus, -a, -um, adj., hidden.
  33. nancīscor, nancīscī, nactus or nānctus, tr., light upon, find.
  34. ex, from the effect of.
  35. quamvīs, though.
  36. triennium, -ī, n., three years.
  37. vēnātum: supine.
  38. merīdiānus, -a, «um, adj., midday.
  39. ut, as (being).
  40. cecinit, predicted; see canō.
  41. Ipsae: ie., of their oun accord.
  42. lāc, lactis, n., milk.
  43. armentum, -ī, n., herd.
Fairytale left blue.png Caput IX Caput XI Fairytale right blue.png