Friday, November 4, 2011

Adulator et Invidus

Here is today's distich by John Owen, with an English translation by Thomas Harvey, 3.188. This epigram plays on the archetypal carping critic, Zoilus, the Cynic philosopher (cf. Owen's epigram Ad Zoilum), and the archetypal flatterer and parasite, Gnatho, from Terence's Eunuch. The epigram contends that while they act differently - one using harsh words, and the other sweet words - they are both motivated by the same emotion: jealousy. (Note that the name Zoilus in the first line needs to scan as a spondee.)

Adulator et Invidus
Zoilus et Gnatho non re, sed nomine, distant.
Virtutem ille bonis invidet, iste malis.

These differ not in Nature but in Name,
This Good, that Bad maligneth: Both to blame.

The vocabulary is keyed to the DCC Latin Vocabulary list. There are two words which are not on the DCC list:

disto, distāre - to to stand apart, be separate, be different
invideo -ēre, invīdī, invīsum - envy, be jealous, begrudge
Gnatho - Gnatho, proverbial for adultation and flattery
Zoilus - Zoilus, proverbial for envy and criticism

bonus -a -um: good
et: and
ille, illa, illud: that
iste, ista, istud: that, that of yours; adv. istīc or istūc, over there; istinc, from over there
malus -a -um: evil
nōmen -inis n.: name
nōn: not
rēs reī f.: thing (rēs pūblica, commonwealth; rēs familiāris, family property, estate; rēs mīlitāris, art of war; rēs novae, revolution)
sed: but
virtūs -ūtis f.: valor, manliness, virtue

(the parasite Gnatho pretending to be amused)

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