Monday, March 28, 2011

Manilius, Astronomicon [On Astrological Phenomena]

Marcus Manilius [Manilius]
1st c. AD
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Imperial Era)


[1,1] Carmine diuinas artes et conscia fati
sidera, diuersos hominum uariantia casus,
caelestis rationis opus, deducere mundo
[I will now begin to describe to the world in song the divine arts, and intelligent stars that shift the various fates of people, the structure of the heavenly order,]

 primusque nouis Helicona mouere
cantibus et uiridi nutantis uertice siluas,
hospita sacra ferens nulli memorata priorum.
[and I will first stir the peaks of Helicon with new songs, and the forests nodding at their green peak, while I bear the sacred guests, things recalled by men before.]

hunc mihi tu, Caesar, patriae princepsque paterque,
qui regis augustis parentem legibus orbem
concessumque patri mundum deus ipse mereris,
[Hail Caesar, emperor and father of our nation, you who rule the world that obeys your august laws, a god even who deserves the world, granted to your

[1,10] das animum uiresque facis ad tanta canenda.
[you pay me mind, and you give me strength for this kind of singing.]

iam propiusque fauet mundus scrutantibus ipsum
et cupit aetherios per carmina pandere census.
[And now the world that belongs to you, it grows excited with witnesses and desires to spread its etherial approval through my songs.]

hoc sub pace uacat tantum;
[so much lies open under a peace like this;]

 iuuat ire per ipsum
aera et immenso spatiantem uiuere caelo
signaque et aduersos stellarum noscere cursus.
[I want to travel through the air itself and reside in that place that occupies the the immense sky, and understand the signs and understand, face to face, the paths of the stars.]

quod solum nouisse parum est.
[this alone is not enough for me to know.]

impensius ipsa
scire iuuat magni penitus praecordia mundi,
[I want to more intimately understand in all their depth the very intentions of the world,]

quaque regat
[in what way it governs]

generetque suis animalia signis,
[and creates living beings under its signs,]

cernere et in numerum Phoebe modulante referre.
[and I want to discern it and report it to a poetic beat measured by Apollo.]

[1,20] bina mihi positis lucent altaria flammis,
[The twin altars now shine for me, and flames set,]

ad duo templa precor duplici circumdatus aestu
carminis et rerum;
[I pray to the two temples, and I'm surrounded by the double heat of song and science;]

 certa cum lege canentem
mundus et immenso uatem circumstrepit orbe
[the world, with its fixed order and immense expanse, crashes around with its singing bard,]

uixque soluta suis immittit uerba figuris.
[and scarcely does it emit any words loosened from its own shapes.]

quem primum interius licuit cognoscere terris
munere caelestum.
[He was the first one to allow us to understand more deeply the heavenly gift from the earth.]

quis enim condentibus illis
clepsisset furto mundum,
[To be specific, who has secretly stolen the world from those who support it,]

quo cuncta reguntur?
[whereby all things are governed? ]

quis foret humano conatus pectore tantum,
[Who should try so hard from his mortal heart,]

inuitis ut dis cuperet deus ipse uideri?
[so as to appear to be a god himself, even when the gods do not approve?]

tu princeps auctorque sacri, Cyllenie, tanti;
[it is you, Cyllenius, who are the leader and author of such a holy rite;]

per te iam caelum interius,
[through you, the sky is now closer,]

 iam sidera nota
[the stars are now known,]

[1,30] sublimis aperire uias imumque sub orbem,
[and possible to reveal the paths of the sublime, and the depth beneath the world,]

et per inane suis parentia finibus astra
[and through the abyss, the stars that adhere to their boundaries, and their names]

 et cursus signorum, pondera, uires,
[and the pathes of the astrological signs, their importances, their strengths,]

maior uti facies mundi foret et ueneranda
non species tantum,
[not only because they affect to appearance of the world and the type of worship so much,]

 sed et ipsa potentia rerum,
[but the very powers of things themselves,]

sentirentque deum gentes quam maximus esset.
[and nations can perceive how truly powerful a god could be.]

{qui sua disposuit per tempora, cognita ut essent
omnibus et mundi facies caelumque supernum.}
[he who laid the foundations during his period of time so that the sights of the world, and the upper sky, could be known to all.]

et natura dedit uires seque ipsa reclusit,
[and the universe gave its powers, and she closed itself up]

regalis animos primum dignata mouere
[deeming it right to first stir the minds of royalty]

[1,40] proxima tangentis rerum fastigia caelo,
[and then those touching the slopes of the things in the sky,]

qui domuere feras gentes oriente sub ipso,
[they who subdued wild nations under its eastern section]

quas secat Euphrates,
[nations whom the Euphrates divides,]

in quas et Nilus inundat,
[and into which the Nile floods,]

qua mundus redit et nigras super euolat urbes.
[and where the world redeems and launches to the sky its black cities.] 

tunc qui templa sacris coluerunt omne per aeuum
[At the time, they were ones who consecrated their temples with sacred rituals, throughout the ages,]

delectique sacerdotes in publica uota
officio uinxere deum,
[and chosen priests won over God with their service in making public vows of worship]

 quibus ipsa potentis
numinis accendit castam praesentia mentem,
[by which the very presence of the powerful force of the divine spurs on the chaste mind,]

inque deum deus ipse tulit patuitque ministris.
[and God himself becomes his divine self, and provides his assistence.]

hi tantum mouere decus primique per artem
[these were the first men to set such a distinguished affair in motion, and in the form of a technique]

[1,50] sideribus uidere uagis pendentia fata.
[and beheld the fates that relie upon the wanderings of the stars.]

singula nam proprio signarunt tempora casu,
[you see, they assign individual times fitting for their own case,]

longa per assiduas complexi saecula curas:
[to have the long roll of the ages embraced through a measure of constant cares.]

nascendi quae cuique dies, quae uita fuisset,
[on what day a person should be born, when his life will have ended]

in quas fortunae leges quaeque hora ualeret,
[the exact hour that will suffice to effect the laws of fortune]

quantaque quam parui facerent discrimina motus.
[and how great, or small, the characteristics of their motions operate.]

postquam omnis caeli species redeuntibus astris
percepta in proprias sedes,
[and thereafter, all the appearances of the sky, as the stars go round, as they are perceived in their proper places,]

 et reddita certis
fatorum ordinibus sua cuique potentia formae,
[and the returns, as they relate to the fixed orders of the fates, and the power contained in each of their forms,]

per uarios usus artem experientia fecit
[and through all kinds of practices, experience accomplished an art form]