Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sic Habe Divitias

88     -     89     -     90

Sic Habe Divitias
Tu tibi divitias, ut non moriturus, habeto;
   Idem divitias, ut moriturus, habe.

Source: Stephanus Paschasius (1528-1615), in Nihus (1642). Meter: Elegiac. The first line features a future imperative, habeto, while the second line has a present imperative, habe. There is no marked difference in meaning; instead the different forms fit the metrical patterns of the different lines. It's a very paradoxical poem, of course, giving you two contradictory commands: tend your wealth as if you were never going to die, and likewise as if you are going to die!

Manage your wealth (tu tibi divitas habe) as if you were not going to die (ut non moriturus); likewise (idem) manage your wealth (habe divitias) as if you were going to die (ut moriturus).

The vocabulary is keyed to the DCC Latin Vocabulary list. All the words in this poem are on that list:

ad: to, up to, towards (+acc.)
dīvitiae -ārum f. pl.: riches, wealth
filia -ae f.; filius -ī m.: daughter; son
habeō habēre habuī habitum: have, hold
īdem eadem idem: the same
morior morī mortuus sum: die
nōn: not
sīc: in this manner, thus; sīc . . . ut: in the same way as
tū tuī tibi tē: you (sing.)
ut, uti: as (+ indic.); so that, with the result that (+ subj.)