Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Verbera cum tuleris...

Here is today's distich by Cato (so-called), 4.6, with English translations by Duff and Chase. Notice the elegant play in Latin between verbera and mere verbis.

Verbera cum tuleris discens aliquando magistri,
Fer patris imperium, cum verbis exit in iram.

Since thou at school thy teacher's blows hast known,
Thou'lt better bear thy father's angry tone.

At school you sometimes bear the teacher's cane:
So 'gainst a father's angry words don't strain.

The vocabulary is keyed to the DCC Latin Vocabulary list. There are only two words in this poem that are not on the DCC list:

aliquando - sometimes, at any time, ever
verber, verberis n. - lash, whip, scourge
cum: with (prep. + abl.); when, since, although (conjunction + subj.)
disco -ere didicī: learn
exeo -īre -iī -itum: go forth
fero ferre tulī lātum: bear, carry
imperium -ī n.: command, power
in: in, on (+ abl.); into onto (+ acc)
īra, irae f.: wrath, anger
magister, magistrī m.: master, chief
pater, patris m.: father, ancestor
verbum -ī n.: word