Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Suetonius, Life of Domitian

Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus [Suetonius]
69-130 AD
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Imperial Era)


I. Domitianus natus est VIIII. Kal. Novemb. patre consule designato inituroque mense insequenti honorem,
[Domitian was born on the 8th Kalends of November, when his father was designated consul, and was about to take his office in the following month,]

regione urbis sexta ad Malum Punicum,
[in the region's sixth region, in Malum Punicum,]

domo quam postea in templum gentis Flaviae convertit.
[in a house which he later converted into the Temple of the Flavian clan.]

Pubertatis ac primae adulescentiae tempus tanta inopia tantaque infamia gessisse fertur,
[Its said that the time of his young male life, and the first stages of adulthood, were spent in such great poverty, and wanton state of hunger,]

ut nullum argenteum vas in usu haberet;
[that he didn't even have a single single pot at his disposal;]

satisque constat Clodium Pollionem praetorium virum,
[and it's agreed that Clodius Pollio, a man of praetorian rank,]

 in quem est poema Neronis quod inscribitur Luscio,
[to whom Nero's poem is addressed, the one that's written by Luscius,]

 chirographum eius conversasse et
nonnumquam protulisse noctem sibi pollicentis;
[and had made him his personal secretary, and at various times, had spent the night with the man, who made various promises to him;]

nec defuerunt qui affirmarent, corruptum Domitianum et a Nerva successore mox suo.
[nor is there a lack of fellows who would declare that Domitian was also corrupted by Nerva, soon to be his own successor.]

Bello Vitelliano confugit in Capitolium cum patruo Sabino ac parte praesentium copiarum,
[During the war against Vitellius, he fled with his uncle Sabinus and a portion of the troops present there to the Capitol,]

sed irrumpentibus adversariis et ardente templo apud aedituum clam pernoctavit,
[but he secretly spent the night in at the temple assistant's home, when while the adversaries were breaking in and the temple burning,]

 ac mane Isiaci celatus habitu interque sacrificulos variae superstitionis,
[and in the morning, hidden in a custom of a foreigner, and among the sacrificial attendants of different superstitions,]

 cum se trans Tiberim ad condiscipuli sui matrem comite uno contulisset,
[when after he had stole himself across the Tiber to the mother of his fellow student, in accompaniment with a companion,]

ita latuit,
[so he hid,]

ut scrutantibus qui vestigia subsecuti erant,
[so that while there were those who were following her tracks among the bounty-hunters,]

deprehendi non potuerit.
[he still was not taken into custody.]

 Post victoriam demum progressus et Caesar consalutatus,
[After finally going forth after the victory, and he was hailed officially as Caesar,]

honorem praeturae urbanae consulari potestate suscepit titulo tenus
[he took upon himself the office of city praetor, more as a title than in respect to its official power]

(nam iuris dictionem ad collegam proximum transtulit);
[you see, he transferred the diction of the law to his next collegue]

 ceterum omnem vim dominationis tam licenter exercuit,
[and he exercised the farthest limits of his violent hegemony so unrestrainedly]

 ut iam tum qualis esset ostenderet.
[that already at that time, he began to show what kind of man he was.]

Ne exsequar singula,
[Let me know pass detail by detail,]

 contrectatis multorum uxoribus,
[when the wives of many men were acquisitioned]

Domitiam Longinam Aelio Lamiae nuptam etiam in matrimonium abduxit,
[he also officially married Domitia Longina, who had been bethrothed to Aelius Lamia,]

 atque uno die super XX. officia urbana aut peregrina distribuit,
[and in a single day, he he assigned over 20 city and overseas offices of government,]

 mirari se Vespasiano dictitante,
[when even Vespasian had to declare himself impressed,]

 quod successorem non et sibi mitteret.
[given that, at the time, he did not assign him as his successor.]