Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Nepos, Thrasybulus

Cornelius Nepos
100-24 BCE
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Republican Era/Golden Age of Latin Literature)


[1] Thrasybulus, Lyci filius, Atheniensis.
[Thrasybulus was an Athenian, and the son of Lycus.]

 Si per se virtus sine fortuna ponderanda sit,
[If his good qualities can be weighed by themselves without considering his good luck,]

dubito, an hunc primum omnium ponam;
[I doubt whether I can set him first among all men.]

 illud sine dubio:
[The following stands without a doubt:]

 neminem huic praefero fide, constantia, magnitudine animi, in patriam amore.
[I can compare no one to this man when it comes to loyalty, consistency, greatness of mind, and love for his country.]

 2 Nam quod multi voluerunt paucique potuerunt ab uno tyranno patriam liberare, huic contigit,
[You see, that which many men desire, and few men can do when it comes to liberating their country from a despot, he was able to manage,]

ut a XXX oppressam tyrannis e servitute in libertatem vindicaret.
[and what happened? He avenged his city, which had been oppressed by the Thirty Tyrants and servitude, and brought it to liberty.]

3 Sed nescio quo modo, cum eum nemo anteiret his virtutibus, multi nobilitate praecucurrerunt.
[But I'm not certain how, while no once could surpass him in virtues, many excelled him through their noble status.]

Primum Peloponnesio bello multa hic sine Alcibiade gessit,
[At first, he performed many deeds now without the aid of Alcibiades, in the Peloponnesian War,]

ille nullam rem sine hoc;
[though the latter accomplished nothing without the former.]

 quae ille universa naturali quodam bono fecit lucri.
[every single thing that the latter did was profited by a naturally good intention.]

4 Sed illa tamen omnia communia imperatoribus cum militibus et fortuna,
[But nevertheless everything was shared by military leaders with their soldiers, including their fortune,]

quod in proelii concursu abit res a consilio ad vires vimque pugnantium.
[since, in the sequence of battle, the affair left the stage of planning, and fell to the strength and force of men fighting it.]

Itaque iure suo nonnulla ab imperatore miles,
plurima vero fortuna vindicat
[And so, by its own rights, good fortune avenges a great deal of soldiers from the leadership of their commander, in truth,]

seque hic plus valuisse quam ducis prudentiam vere potest praedicare
[and then one can truly proclaim that he had truly prevailed out of sheer will than from the good judgment of a general.]

. 5 Quare illud magnificentissimum factum proprium est Thrasybuli.
[And this was exactly the case for the most magnificent accomplishment performed by Thrasybulus.]

Nam cum XXX tyranni, praepositi a Lacedaemoniis, servitute oppressas tenerent Athenas,
[You see, while the Thirty Tyrants, who had previously been imposed by the Spartans, occupied Athens, which was now stamped down into servitude,]

plurimos civis, quibus in bello parserat fortuna, partim patria expulissent,
[they had, in part, expelled most the citizens, whose fortunes had previously relied upon the war,]

 partim interfecissent,
[and they had put a number to death,]

plurimorum bona publicata inter se divisissent,
[and they had divided the confiscated property of most of these men amongst themselves,]

 non solum princeps, sed etiam solus initio bellum his indixit.
[thereupon, he <Thrasybulus> not only declared war upon these men, in the role of leader, but by himself in the beginning.]

[2] Hic enim cum Phylen confugisset,
[You see, as soon as this man had fled to Phyles with his folks]

quod est castellum in Attica munitissimum,
[that is, the most fortified citadel in Attica,]

non plus habuit secum XXX de suis.
[he had no more than 30 of his own people accompanying him.]

Hoc initium fuit salutis Actaeorum,
[This was the beginning stage of salvation for the people of Attica,]

 hoc robur libertatis clarissimae civitatis.
[this was the true strength of liberty, of one of the most illustrious cities ever.]

 2 Neque vero hic non contemptus est primo a tyrannis atque eius solitudo.
[Indeed, this man was not frowned upon at first by the tyrants, nor his lonely state of affairs.]

 Quae quidem res et illis contemnentibus pernicii et huic despecto saluti fuit.
[In truth though, this situation was both a cause of destruction for those men who had grown to despise him, and of salvation for the man despised.]

Haec enim illos segnes ad persequendum,
 hos autem tempore ad comparandum dato fecit robustiores.
[You see, he made the latter too lazy to pursue these affairs, and his own men all the stronger through the time allotted for them to make their preparations.]

3 Quo magis praeceptum illud omnium in animis esse debet,
[By which that proverb ought to exist in the minds of all people,]

 nihil in bello oportere contemni,
[that nothing ought to be rejected in time of war,]

 neque sine causa dici matrem timidi flere non solere.
[and that a mother who is not accustomed to weep for a cowardly man ought not be said to lack a reason.]

 4 Neque tamen pro opinione Thrasybuli auctae sunt opes.
[And nevertheless, when it comes to an opinion of Thrasybulus, his resources were not enhanced.]

 Nam iam tum illis temporibus fortius boni pro libertate loquebantur quam pugnabant.
[You see, already then, during that period of time, good men used to speak in support of freedom as strongly as they fought for it.]

 5 Hinc in Piraeum transiit
[From that point, he made his way to the Piraeus,]

 Munychiamque munivit.
[and he fortified Munychia.] 

Hanc bis tyranni oppugnare sunt adorti
[On two occasions, tyrants arose to fight this,]

 ab eaque turpiter repulsi protinus in urbem armis impedimentisque amissis refugerunt.
[and from that point, once they were disgracefully kicked out, they fled back to their city, even after they had abandoned their arms and war supplies.]

6 Usus est Thrasybulus non minus prudentia quam fortitudine.
[Thrasybulus succeeded no less from his good judgment, than his courage and strength.]

Nam cedentes violari vetuit - cives enim civibus parcere aequum censebat -;
[You see, he forbade the men leaving to be harmed--as it went, he thought it virtuous to be sparing to his citizens;]

neque quisquam est vulneratus,
[and not a man suffered a wound,]

 nisi qui prior impugnare voluit.
[unless he was one who wished to fight against him beforehand.]

 Neminem iacentem veste spoliavit,
[He stripped no one who lying down in defeat of their clothing,]

 nil attigit nisi arma, quorum indigebat,
[he put his hands upon nothing but their weapons, which he needed,]

quaeque ad victum pertinebant.
[and whatever supplies pertained to survival.]

 7 In secundo proelio cecidit Critias, dux tyrannorum,
[Critias, the leader of the tyrant rulers, fell to his death in the second battle, ]

 cum quidem exadversus Thrasybulum fortissime pugnaret.
[after he in fact fought, and most bravely, against Thrasybulus.]

[3] Hoc deiecto Pausanias venit Atticis auxilio, rex Lacedaemoniorum.
[When this man was slain, Pausanis, the Spartan king, came to the aid of the Athenians.]

 Is inter Thrasybulum et eos, qui urbem tenebant, fecit pacem his condicionibus:
[He had a peace accord made between Thrasybulus and those men who were in possession of the city, according to the following stipulations: ] 

 ne qui praeter XXX tyrannos et X,
[lest, the ones, beyond the 30 Tyrants, and the 10 ones too,]

qui postea praetores creati superioris more crudelitatis erant usi,
[who, after they were appointed commanders, they practiced the custom of haughtier cruelty,]

afficerentur exsilio,
[they were thrown into exile,]

 neve bona publicarentur;
[nor could they take advantage of public resources;]

rei publicae procuratio populo redderetur.
[and the control of the state was returned to the people.]

2 Praeclarum hoc quoque Thrasybuli, quod reconciliata pace, cum plurimum in civitate posset, legem tulit,
[Also, this was also a distinguished act of Thrasybulus, that, when peace was hammered out, he passed law, as much as he could manage over the citizenry,]

ne quis ante actarum rerum accusaretur neve multaretur;
[and no one was allowed either to accused or punished for their past actions;]

 eamque illi oblivionis appellarunt.
[and those men called an amnesty.]

 3 Neque vero hanc tantum ferendam curavit,
[In fact, he not only paid attention to this,]

 sed etiam, ut valeret, effecit.
[but he carried it out, as far as his strength could manage.]

 Nam cum quidam ex iis, qui simul cum eo in exsilio fuerant,
[You see, when certain numbers of these men, who had previously been in exile, at this time]

 caedem facere eorum vellent,
[they were wishing to make their deaths,]

 cum quibus in gratiam reditum erat publice,
[alongside those whose return had come to favor, in public,]

[but he prohibited this]

et id, quod pollicitus erat, praestitit.
[and he managed this matter exactly as he had promised before.] 

[4] Huic pro tantis meritis honoris corona a populo data est,
[To which a crown of honor was bequeathed to him by his people for such tremendous accomplishments,]

facta duabus virgulis oleaginis:
[one made from the two branches of olive:]

 quam quod amor civium et non vis expresserat,
[because it was one that love from his citizens, and not arbitrary force, had expressed,]

 nullam habuit invidiam magnaque fuit gloria.
[he garnered no jealousy, and his glory was great.]

2 Bene ergo Pittacus ille, qui in VII sapientum numero est habitus,
[Therefore, it was well-known that that famous Pittacus, who is counted among the group of the Seven Wise Men,]

 cum Mytilenaei multa milia iugerum agri ei muneri darent,
[when the people of Mytilene gave him thousands of acres of their land as a token of gratitude,]

`Nolite, oro vos, inquit id mihi dare, quod multi invideant, plures etiam concupiscant.
[he said, "I beg you all, do not wish to given it to me, because it will cause many people to envy me, and even more to desire the same.]

 Quare ex istis nolo amplius quam centum iugera, quae et meam animi aequitatem et vestram voluntatem indicent.
[So then, I want no more than a hundred acres from these men, that is, ones that indicate the fairness of my mind, and your own willingness.]

Nam parva munera diutina, locupletia non propria esse consuerunt'.
[You see, small tokens of gratitude ought to happen daily, but great wealth should not be owned privately.']

 3 Illa igitur corona contentus Thrasybulus neque amplius requisivit
[And so, Thrasybulus, content with that famous crown of his, neither acquired anything else,]

 neque quemquam honore se antecessisse existimavit.
[nor did he think that any man could surpass his presitigious standing.]

4 Hic sequenti tempore cum praetor classem ad Ciliciam appulisset
[In the following period of time, when he, now a commander, had steered his fleet to Cilicia,]

 neque satis diligenter in castris eius agerentur vigiliae,
[and nightwatches were not being conducted diligently enough around his campsite,]

a barbaris ex oppido noctu eruptione facta in tabernaculo interfectus est.
[he was killed by barbarians one night, when they made out of their town, and against the general's tent.]