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Early Indo-European Texts

Latin

Winfred P. Lehmann and Jonathan Slocum

This page contains a text in Latin with a modern English translation. This particular text and its translation are extracted from a lesson in the Early Indo-European Online series, where one may find detailed information about this text (see the Table of Contents page for Latin Online in EIEOL), and general information about the Latin language and its speakers' culture.

from Virgil's Aeneid, Section 1ff.

Arma virumque cano, Trojae qui primus ab oris
Italiam fato profugus Laviniaque venit
Litora -- multum ille et terris jactatus et alto
Vi superum, saevae memorem Junonis ob iram,
Multa quoque et bello passus, dum conderet urbem
Inferretque deos Latio -- genus unde Latinum
Albanique patres atque altae moenia Romae.
Musa, mihi causas memora, quo numine laeso
Quidve dolens regina deum tot volvere casus
Insignem pietate virum, tot adire labores
Impulerit. Tantaene animis caelestibus irae?
Urbs antiqua fuit (Tyrii tenuere coloni)
Karthago, Italiam contra Tiberinaque longe
Ostia, dives opum studiisque asperrima belli.
quam Juno fertur terris magis omnibus unam
posthabita coluisse Samo: hic illius arma,
hic currus fuit; hoc regnum dea gentibus esse,
si qua fata sinant, iam tum tenditque fovetque.
Progeniem sed enim Troiano a sanguine duci
audierat Tyrias olim quae verteret arces.

Translation

I sing of arms and the man, who as first (among the Romans) came from the coasts of Troy to the Lavinian shores in flight driven by fate. Tossed about on lands and the sea by the might of the gods, he suffered many things also in battle through the relentless anger of fierce Juno as he brought the gods to Latium, whence the Latin race and the Alban fathers and also the walls of lofty Rome.
Remind me of the causes, oh Muse, offended for what authority, or angry at what the queen of the gods caused a man outstanding in piety to undergo so many troubles, to suffer so many labors. Are there such angers in the celestial minds?
There was an ancient city (Tyrian colonists maintained it), Carthage, a long way opposite Italy and the mouths of the Tiber, rich in wealth and very fierce in the pursuits of war, which alone Juno is said to have cherished more than all others, even esteeming Samos less. Here were her arms; here, her chariot. This was the ruling power among the races for the goddess, and as the fates permitted, she favored and supported it. But she had heard that a race from Trojan blood would at some time overturn the Tyrian citadels.