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809. laesisset: for laesura esset. 814. at: interrogative. 817. myrtum: shepherds made the shafts of their spears of myrtle wood.
BOOK VIII The alliance of Aeneas and Evander. made by Vulcan.
The shield of Aeneas
1-101. While Turnus is opening the war, an envoy is sent by the Latins to solicit the aid of Diomedes, who has settled in Apulia and founded Argyripa. Aeneas is advised by the god of the Tiber, who appears to him in sleep, to seek assistance from Evander, an Arcadian prince, lately established at Pallanteum, afterward the Palatine Hill, on the Tiber. On the point of departing on this mission, Aeneas sees the sow with her thirty young on the shore, the omen mentioned by Helenus. He ascends the Tiber, which has slackened his current to favor him, and at midday comes in sight of the Palatine and the settlement of Evander.
1, 2. belli signum Extulit: Virgil, according to the Roman custom, repre sents Turnus as raising the flag of war' from the battlements of Laurentum.
3. impulit arma: “clashed his arms.'
9. urbem : Argyripa, which the hero Diomedes founded in Apulia after the Trojan war, on feeing from Argos and Aetolia to Italy.
10. Qui: = ut is.
10–14. All the infinitives depend on Edoceat, except posci, which depends on dicere.
11. Aenean: the subject of the infinitives, advectum (esse), inferre, and dicere.
12. regem se posci : “that he is called by the fates to be king'; i.e. of Latium.
15, 16. struat, cupiat: Aeneas is the subject.
37. revehis: who bringest back'; since Dardanus, the founder of the Trojan race, was a native of Italy. See note on III, 167. nobis : for ad nos.
41. Concessere: ‘have subsided,'«come to an end.'
51. Virgil follows the early legend, which derives the word Palatium from the Arcadian Pallantium (founded by the Arcadian hero, Pallas), and which relates an Arcadian emigration under the leadership of Evander to the valley of the Tiber.
54. Pallanteum : the supposed original name of the city on the Palatine, of which Palatium was regarded as a corrupted form.
57. recto flumine: "by the direct course of the stream.' Cf. VI, 900. 59. primisque — astris : i.e. at dawn. 65. •Here (on the banks of this stream) is destined to rise my stately home, head of lofty cities. The reference is to Rome, which may be regarded as already rising; hence, exit.
66. lacu: here, the bed of the river.'
77. Corniger: river gods were sometimes represented with the heads and horns of bulls.
78. propius : 'more manifestly' than in a dream.
84. enim : certainly.' He follows the instructions of Helenus, III, 437– 440, and of Tiberinus, above, 1. 60.
87. refluens: “Aowing back' on his course, so as to stay the downward current.
89. aequor aquis : see note on V, 821.
go. rumore secundo: joined with celerant, is commonly understood of the song of the oarsmen, chanted to the movement of their oars; with joyful cries.'
98. procul : the final syllable is long.
102-183. Evander and his people are engaged, at the moment when Aeneas arrives, in celebrating a sacrifice to Hercules. Pallas, the son of Evander, at first threatens to resist the landing of the strangers; but their friendly character being ascertained, they are invited into the presence of the king, who listens with favor to the proposition of alliance, and promises assistance to the Trojans. They are then invited to join the Arcadians in their religious festival.
104. huic una: poetic construction for una cum hoc. 110. quos : those who were attending the feast.
114. Qui genus: who by descent?'. of what descent?' genus, Greek accusative. Cf. genus, V, 285. unde domo: for ex qua domo.
118. bello superbo : by an unrighteous war'; a war which is occasioned by their pride and arrogance in denying us a shelter in their country.
125. subeunt - relinquunt: see note on hysteron proteron, II, 259.
130. coniunctus Atridis : both the Atridae and Evander are descended from Jupiter; the Atridae through Tantalus, and Evander through Mercury.
132. Cognati patres: Aeneas is descended from Electra, a daughter of Atlas, and the mother of Dardanus; Evander from Maia, another daughter of Atlas, and the mother of Mercury.
133. et fatis egere volentem : 'and have brought me here through fate, a willing (guest)’; i.e. I myself gladly obey their behest.
143. legatos: sc. misi from pepigi — a case of zeugma.
146. Daunia: Turnus was the son of Daunus, and hence the term Daunia is not inaptly applied to the whole Latin gens, or nation, of which he is at present the leading spirit.
149. supra, infra: the upper sea is the Adriatic, the lower the Tuscan. 151. Rebus spectata : "tried by warlike deeds.'
157. Hesionae regna : Telamon, king of Salamis, an island in the Saronic Gulf, married Hesione, the daughter of Laomedon and sister of Priam. Hence she was queen of Salamis.
169. mihi: dative of the apparent agent.
177. Praecipuum: Aeneas is honored above his followers by being placed upon a seat or throne covered with the hide of a lion. The frame of the throne is of maple wood.
178. solio: ablative of instrument; lit. welcomes with a maple throne.' 180. Viscera : 'the flesh'; as in I, 211.
183. Perpetui tergo: with long body. Logically the word limits tergo. lustralibus : 'expiatory '; pertaining to the expiatory, or lustral, sacrifice.
183–279. Evander now explains to Aeneas the origin of this annual sacrifice to Hercules, by relating the story of Cacus, a giant of Mount Aventine, whom the hero had slain on this spot.
190. saxis suspensam hanc rupem : 'this cliff with overhanging rocks'; Cf. I, 166. Saxis, ablative of instrument. How literally?
191. Disiectae (sunt): the indicative with ut, “how,' as in VI, 856. montis domus: the now empty cave on Mount Aventine, which had been the abode of Cacus.
197. tabo: join with pallida, ‘ghastly.'
200. et nobis : “to us also '; as well as others who were suffering from monsters. aliquando : .at length.'
202. Geryonae: see note on VII, 662.
207. stabulis : 'from the camp'; i.e. from their resting and feeding place in the valley.
209. pedibus rectis : ablative of description with vestigia ; lit. 'tracks with advancing feet.'
212. Quaerenti: dative of reference, used indefinitely, “to one seeking.' 215. Discessu: .at their departure '; ablative of time. 215, 216. mugire, impleri, relinqui: historical infinitives. 218. custodita : though 'guarded.'
221. aërii : the Aventine, even now, is quite a bold eminence, especially toward the river, though much diminished from its original height.
226. paterna: his father's '; Vulcan's. 228. The final -e in this verse is elided before the initial vowel of the next. 236. iugo: join with prona as ablative of manner. 237. nitens: i.e. with his shoulders. 245. super : ‘from above.' 248. insueta rudentem : 'roaring hideously.' 259. vana: because they avail not against Hercules.
260. in nodum complexus: i.e. forcing Cacus's body and limbs by his powerful grasp into a knot. Others understand, 'twining his (Hercules') limbs about him as in a knot.' angit Elisos oculos : Hercules makes the monster's eyes start out by choking him.
261. siccum: here equivalent to privatus, 'drained of,' and so followed by the ablative of separation. Cf. IX, 64.
263. abiuratae: “the possession of which he had denied on oath.' 268. Ex illo: 'from that time.'
269. primus — auctor, etc. : 'Potitius, the first institutor, and the Pinarian house, the guardian of the worship of Hercules, established this altar in the grove.' Some editors make a new sentence begin with 1. 271, and regard Hercules as the understood subject of statuit. Both the Potitian and Pinarian families were engaged from the first in this worship of Hercules at Rome.
274. porgite: for porrigite.
276. bicolor : referring to the silvery color of the poplar leaf on the under side and the green on the other.
280-368. After completing the rites of Hercules, Evander conducts Aeneas to the city and points out to him the places of interest around, and entertains him for the night in his dwelling.
285. Salii: the Salii were appointed priests of Mars by King Numa. Perhaps they were originally priests of Hercules.
286. tempora: what construction? 288. novercae : Juno.
291. Oechaliam: destroyed by Hercules because Eurytus refused him his daughter Iole. mille : here, a round number.
315. That the aborigines of different countries sprung from the rocks and trees was a common notion.
317. parcere parto: “to husband their gains '; to be provident.
319. Saturnus: an Italian deity, who presided over agriculture (from root sa-, seen in the supine stem of sero, 'sow'), was identified by the Romans with Kronos, who was overthrown by his son Jupiter from the supremacy of heaven.
322. Composuit: assembled together. Latium from lateo is only a fanciful derivation.
326. decolor: 'of debased color '; an age of baser metal than gold; i.e. the brazen age.
329. posuit: for deposuit ; i.e. laid aside its name of Saturnia, and then Ausonia, and several others, which successively' gave place to 'newer names.
331, 332. Itali Diximus: we Italians called (it).' Albula: as it was originally called.
336. Carmentis : an Italian divinity, here assigned to Arcadia.
338. The porta Carmentalis in Rome was at the foot of the Capitoline Hill. The order of the words is et portam, quam Romani Carmentalem memorant.
339. honorem: the name of this gate was a mark of honor to the nymph, dating from the earliest times.
343. Rettulit: 'made into,' made'; a doubtful signification of the verb, but at least as satisfactory as any of the interpretations proposed for it here.