Saturday, March 5, 2011

Catullus, Poem 105


Gaius Valerius Catullus (Catullus)
84-54 BCE
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Republican Era/Golden Age of Latin Literature)

Multas per gentes et multa per aequora vectus
advenio has miseras, frater, ad inferias,
ut te postremo donarem munere mortis
et mutam nequiquam alloquerer cinerem.

(Carried across the lands of many peoples, and across many seas, I have come to your miserable remains, my dear brother, so that I could once and for all give you a gift for your funeral, and so that I could speak to the silent ash, though it's no use.)

Quandoquidem fortuna mihi tete abstulit ipsum.

(Even so, fortune has snatched you [I can't believe it], my own brother, away from me!)

Heu miser indigne frater adempte mihi,
nunc tamen interea haec, prisco quae more parentum
tradita sunt tristi munere ad inferias,
accipe fraterno multum manantia fletu,
atque in perpetuum, frater, ave atque vale.

(So sad...wretched brother, robbed from me...anyway, here, take these funeral tokens [they were passed down to those who've passed away as a somber gift, like our ancestors used to do], take them, since your brother has wept so much, and so, my dear brother, forever grant me your hello...and fare well.)