Friday, April 29, 2011

Plautus, Little Punic Boy

Titus Maccius Plautus {Plautus}
254-185 BC
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Republican Era)


PERSONAE [Characters]

AGORASTOCLES ADULESCENS [Agorastocles the young man]
MILPHIO SERVVS [Milphio the slave]
ADELPHASIVM PUELLA [Adelphasium the young girl]
ANTERASTILIS PUELLA [Anterastilis the young girl]
LYCVS LENO [Lycus the pimp]
ANTAMONIDES MILES [Antamonides the soldier]
ADVOCATI [the lawyers]
COLLYBISCVS VILICVS [Collybiscus the overseer]
SYNCERASTVS SERVVS [Syncerastus the slave]
HANNO POENVS [Hanno the Carthaginian]
GIDDENIS NUTRIX [Giddenis the nurse]
PVER [Slave boy]


Puer septuennis surripitur Carthagine.
[A seven year old boy is secretly stolen away from Carthage.]

Osor mulierum emptum adoptat hunc senex
[An old man, who hates women, buys him and later adopts him,]

Et facit heredem.
[and he also makes him his heir.]

 deinde eius cognatae duae
Nutrixque earum raptae.
[Later on two of his daughters, and also his nursemaid, are ravished in affairs.]

 mercatur Lycus,
[Lycus goes to the market,]

Vexatque amantem.
[and he hounds the lover.]

at ille cum auro vilicum
Lenoni obtrudit,
[But he, with gold obtain from some overseers, he plays the Pimp for a fool,]

 itaque eum furto alligat.
[and therefore lies him up in secret.]

Venit Hanno Poenus,
[Then a Punic named Hanno comes on the scene]

 gnatum hunc fratris repperit
[and he finds out that this man is his brother]

Suasque adgnoscit quas perdiderat filias.
[and he gets acquainted with the daughters that he had previously lost.]


Achillem Aristarchi mihi commentari lubet:
[As Aristarchus, I love to rant on about Achilles.]

inde mihi principium capiam, ex ea tragoedia.
[But from this point, let me take my starting point from this particular tragedy.]

'sileteque et tacete atque animum advortite,
["But silent, and shut the hell up, and pay attention too,]

audire iubet vos imperator' —
[the commander now orders you to listen up"--]

[an actor]

bonoque ut animo sedeate in subselliis,          5
[and why? So that you can sit there in the lower levels of the theater, in a good mood,]

et qui esurientes et qui saturi venerint:
[and whatever people cramped with hunger will come surely to be stuffed:]

qui edistis, multo fecistis sapientius,
[you folks who have eaten, acted by far the wiser,]

qui non edistis, saturi fite fabulis;
[and you who've not eaten, will have be sated with stories;]

nam cui paratumst quod edit,
[you see, to whom the thing that he publishes, is now ready,]

 nostra gratia
nimia est stultitia sessum impransum incedere.    10
[and my good intention goes too far to the realm of idiocy to approach a seated man who's not eaten his lunch yet.]

Exsurge, praeco, fac populo audientiam;
[Get up, criar, announce an audience for the public;]

iam dudum exspecto,
[I've already been waiting for ages]

 si tuom officium scias:
[if you even now that this is your duty;]

exerce vocem, quam per vivisque et ~ colis.
[Work that voice of yours, as though you were screaming for the live men and <suggestions?>]

nam nisi clamabis, tacitum te obrepet fames.
[you see, unless you shout out, hunger will creep upon you in your silence.]

age nunc reside,
[so come on with it then, sit back down]

duplicem ut mercedem feras.     15
[so that you can haul off a double paycheck.]

* * *                                                                    15a
Bonum factum esse, edicta ut servetis mea.
[Announce that "it's been well done", so that you can save my own pronouncements.]

scortum exoletum ne quis in proscaenio
[Do let a single greased-up hoebag sit in front of the stage,]

 neu lictor verbum aut virgae muttiant,
[or let the lictor and his "rods" mumble a word,]

neu dissignator praeter os obambulet
[or the stage designer walk out in front of our very eyes,]

neu sessum ducat,
[or let him direct the sitting arrangement,]

 dum histrio in scaena siet.    20
[so long as the actor is still on the stage.]

diu qui domi otiosi dormierunt,
[For the men who've slept at home in the time off work,]

animo aequo nunc stent,
[it befits them to now be fair-minded and patient,]

vel dormire temperent.
[or otherwise, they should try to sleep within reasonable measure.]

servi ne obsideant,
[and don't let any slaves sit in your way]

liberis ut sit locus,
[you see, we want this place to belong to free men,]

vel aes pro capite dent;
[or otherwise, make them give us some cash for every one of them;]

 si id facere non queunt,
[If they cannot manage to do this,]

domum abeant,
[make them go home,]

 vitent ancipiti infortunio,          25
[let them not avoid a double misfortune,]

ne et hic varientur virgis et loris domi,
[so that they not get their asses beaten here with sticks, and at home with whips,]

si minus curassint,
[even if they should care all the less,]

quom eri reveniant domum.
[still, make them return home to their master.]

nutrices pueros infantis minutulos
domi ut procurent
[And let the nursemaids watch over their little tiny babes at home]

neu quae spectatum adferat,
[nor let her come here to watch,]

ne et ipsae sitiant et pueri pereant fame             30
[you don't want these same women to grow thirsty and their children to die of hunger]

neve esurientes hic quasi haedi obvagiant.
[and you don't these starving men here to wander in your way like wild goats.]

matronae tacitae spectent,
[Let respectable women watch in silence,]

 tacitae rideant,
[and let them giggle in silence,]

canora hic voce sua tinnire temperent,
[in this place, the chambers should moderately ring with their voice,]

domum sermones fabulandi conferant,
[as they had beforehand collected the speeches of the storyteller,]

ne et hic viris sint et domi molestiae.            35
[but don't let them pester their husbands both here and at home.]

Quodque ad ludorum curatores attinet,
[Whatever a man offers to the organizers of our public games,]

ne palma detur quoiquam artifici iniuria
[don't let a palm of victory be granted to anybody out of some fake scheme]

neve ambitionis causa extrudantur foras,
[or let them, by reason of ambition, be pushed outside,]

quo deteriores anteponantur bonis.
[when worse folks are placed ahead of good ones.]

et hoc quoque etiam, quod paene oblitus fui:    40
[and this is also something which I almost forgot:]

dum ludi fiunt,
[while the games are going on,]

in popinam, pedisequi,
inruptionem facite;
[you streetwalkers should make a break into the cookhouse;]

 nunc dum occasio est,
[now so long as the occasion stands,]

nunc dum scriblitae aestuant,
[and so long as graffiti now swelters on,]

[go ahead and approach.]

Haec quae imperata sunt pro imperio histrico,
[These are the kinds of things that were ordered by the power of the actor,]

bonum hercle factum pro se quisque ut meminerit.
[and by god, this thing was done well by its own virtue, as anyone can recall.]

Ad argumentum nunc vicissatim volo
[And now, changing my pace, I wish to sail back to the plot of this play,]

 ut aeque mecum sitis gnarures.
[so that you can sit there just as hungry as I am.]

eius nunc regiones, limites, confinia
[I will now point out its places, it borders, and its confines.]

 ei rei ego finitor factus sum.
[I've been made the conductor of this affair.]

sed nisi molestumst,
[But unless it's a trouble,]

nomen dare vobis volo       50
[I want to tell you the name of this comedy;]

sin odiost,
[even if it sucks,]

dicam tamen,
[I'll still tell you,]

siquidem licebit per illos quibus est in manu.
[if truly it will be allowed to those men who are at hand.]

Carchedonius vocatur haec comoedia,
[This comedy is called the "Charcedonius"]

* * *                                                            53a
latine Plautus Patruus Pultiphagonides.
[but in Latin, "Plautus , Uncle Pultiphagonides"]

nomen iam habetis.
[So now you know the name.]

nunc rationes ceteras
[now hear the other parts;]

nam argumentum hoc hic censebitur:
[you see, at this point, this will be the plot agreed upon:]

locus argumentost suom sibi proscaenium,
[the setting for his plot will be the stage before you,]

vos iuratores estis.
[and you will be the critics.]

 quaeso, operam date.
[so please, pay attention.]

Carthaginienses fratres patrueles duo
[There were down stepbrothers from Carthage,]

 summo genere et summis ditiis;       
[born from the most important lineage and wealth;]

eorum alter vivit,
[one of them survives,]

alter est emortuos.
[but the other died off.]

propterea apud vos dico confidentius,
[I now speak with great confidence in your presence,] 

quia mihi pollictor dixit qui eum pollinxerat.
[because the one who had promised him, that is, who said so, is I.]

sed illi seni qui mortuost, <ei> filius,
[but the son that belongs to that vey man, is dead,]

unicus qui fuerat,
[who had been his only one,]

ab divitiis a patre               65
puer septuennis surripitur Carthagine,
[as the boy was stolen away  from the father's property, out of Carthage, at the age of seven,]

sexennio prius quidem quam moritur pater.
[and in fact, before he was six years old, his father died.]

Quoniam periisse sibi videt gnatum unicum,
[Since he saw his only son had died,]

conicitur ipse in morbum ex aegritudine:
[this man too was stricken to sickness, out of grief:]

facit illum heredem fratrem patruelem suom,    70
[he made his stepbrother his heir,]

ipse abit ad Acheruntem sine viatico.
[and he goes to Acheron, without warning.]

ille qui surripuit puerum Calydonem avehit,
[the very man who stole his son, Calydones, away, carries him off,]

vendit eum domino hic diviti quoidam seni,
[and he sells him to a rich man here,]

cupienti liberorum,
 osori mulierum.
[who was desirous to have children, but not fond of women.]

emit hospitalem is filium imprudens senex       75
puerum ilslum eumque adoptat sibi pro filio
[And this old man unknowingly bought the stranger's boy, and he adopted him as his own son,]

eumque heredem fecit,
[and he made him his heir]

quom ipse obiit diem.
[on the very day that he died.]

is illic adulescens habitat in illisce aedibus.
[From then on, the young man lives in this here house in front of you.]

Revertor rursus denuo Carthaginem:
[At last, I've returned to Carhage:]

si quid mandare voltis aut curarier,               80
[If you have any requests, and I can be of service,]

argentum nisi qui dederit,
[but unless someone shall've paid money]

 nugas egerit;
[he should miss out on the jokes;]

[verum] qui dederit,
[actually, whoever shall've paid,]1

 magis maiores nugas egerit.
[he should miss out on the funnier jokes.]

Sed illi patruo huius, qui vivit senex,
Carthaginiensi duae fuere filiae,
altera quinquennis, altera quadrimula:
[But to our story's uncle of this guy, from Carthage that is, the old man living here, there belonged two daughters, a 5 year old, and the other, a 4 year old]

cum nutrice una periere a Magaribus.
[when they were taken alongside their nursemaid by Magare raiders.]

eas qui surripuit, in Anactorium devehit,
[The man who stole them away, rode them down to Anactorium,]

vendit eas omnis,
[and sold all three of them,]

et nutricem et virgines,
[and the nursemaid, and the young girls,]

praesenti argento homini, si leno est homo,
[to any many who showed up with money, as if the man's a pimp,]

quantum hominum terra sustinet sacerrumo.     90
[how great the quantity of men the world sustains from the worst vice.]

vosmet nunc facite coniecturam ceterum,
[But now you all, yeah you, need to understand another plot point,]

quid id sit hominis, cui Lyco nomen siet.
[why this matter might pertain to a man named Lycus.]

is ex Anactorio, ubi prius habitaverat,
huc commigravit in Calydonem hau diu,
[He's a fellow from Anactorium, where he had previously lived, but he moved away from there to Calydon, and not long ago,]

sui quaesti causa.
[in order to find a living.]

 is in illis habitat aedibus.          95
[The fellow lives in that house over there.]

Earum hic adulescens alteram efflictim perit,
[He, when he was a young man, sorely fell in love with one of these girls,]

suam sibi cognatam, imprudens, neque scit
[and unwisely, he did not know that she was his kin,]

quae siet
neque eam umquam tetigit,
[nor who she really is, and he never gave her shelter,] 

 ita eum leno macerat:
[and so the pimp softened him up:]

neque quicquam cum ea fecit etiamnum stupri
neque duxit umquam,
[neither did he do anything with the girl, at least not anything that would cause a scandal, nor did he ever lead her away,]

 neque ille voluit mittere       100
[nor that other fellow wish to send her away]

quia amare cernit,
[because he saw that he loved her,]

 tangere hominem volt bolo.
[and he wished to lead the man around by the nose.]

illam minorem in concubinatum sibi
volt emere miles quidam,
[A soldier wants to buy that young girl, and include her in his harem,]

qui illam deperit.
[as he has completely lost it for her.]

Sed pater illarum Poenus, postquam eas perdidit,
[But the Carthaginian, the father of these girls, ever since he lost them,]

mari te<rraque> usquequaque quaeritat.                105
[has been searching land and sea for them, wherever he can manage.]

ubi quamque in urbem est ingressus,
[When he came into this particular city,]

omnes meretrices, ubi quisque habitant, invenit;
[he straightaway located all the high-town prostitutes, and the place each of them live now.]

dat aurum, ducit noctem, rogitat postibi
unde sit,
[He gives them gold, spends the night, and after that, asks them where they are from,]

quoiatis, captane an surrupta sit,
[and how old they are, and whether they had been captured, or stolen away,]

quo genere gnata, qui parentes fuerint.              110
[and from what family they were born, and who their parents were.]

ita docte atque astu filias quaerit suas.
[And so, he also interrogated the

et is omnis linguas scit,
[And the fellow knows how to speak all kinds of languages,]

sed dissimulat sciens
se scire:
[but he pretends that he doesn't know how to, even though he does know.]

Poenus plane est.
[I mean, he's clearly a Carthaginian.]

quid verbis opust?
[What's the point in explaining?]