Saturday, April 7, 2012

Jus tibi natorum...

Here is today's distich by Martial, 11.12. Martial is here mocking someone who does not enjoy the social benefits of having a legitimate father. Someone who was illegitimate could not be said to have a father, nor could freedmen (i.e. ex-slaves).

Jus tibi natorum vel septem, Zoile, detur,
dum matrem nemo det tibi, nemo patrem.

Though the rights of a father of even seven children be given you, Zoilus, no one can give you a mother or a father.

Here is the vocabulary:

jus - right, law
tu - you
natus - child
vel - or, or even, even
septem - seven
Zoilus - Zoilus
do - give
dum - while, when
mater - mother
nemo - no one, nobody
pater - father