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tine antiquarian school of poetry, and his unp easing remembranc f the manner in which the study of Livius was enforced by his early teacher may have tended to onfirm his fastidious aversion from the

der poetry.

Horace, it may le concludeu, assumed the manly robe (toga virilis) in his sixteenth or seventeenth year It is probable that he lost his excellent and honored father before he set out to complete his edɑcation at Athens. But cf what stirring events must the boy have been witness during his residence at Rome! He might possibly soon after his arrival (B.C. 52), have heard Cicero speak his oration for Mil. Into the subsequent years were crowded all the preparations for the last contest between Pompey and Cæsar. The peace ful studies of the Roman youth must have been strangely interrupt. ed by these political excitements. What spirited boy would not have thrown aside his books to behold the triumphant entrance of Cæsa into Rome after the passage of the Rubicon? And while that de cisive step was but threatened, how anxiously and fearfully mus? Rome have awaited her doom-ignorant who was to be her master. and how that master would use his power; whether new proscrip. tions would more than decimate her patrician families, and deluge her streets with blood; whether military license would have free scope, and the majesty of the Roman people be insulted by the out. rages of an infuriated soldiery! No man was so obscure, so young, or so thoughtless, but that he must have been deeply impressed with the insecurity of liberty and of life. During the whole conflict, what must have been the suspense, the agitation, the party violence, the terror, the alternate elevation and prostration of mind! In the unruffled quiet of his manhood and age, how often must these turbulent and awful days have contrasted themselves, in the memory of Horace, with his tranquil pursuits of letters, social enjoyment, and country retirement.

It was about the time of (probably the year after) the battle of Pharsalia (for the state of Greece, just at the period of the final cenflict, must have been insecure, if not dangerous) that the youthful Horace left his school at Rome to study in Athens. If his father was dead, the produce of the Venusian estate would no doubt suffice for his maintenance; if still living, the generous love of the parent would not hesitate at this further expense, if within his power. During many centuries of the Roman greatness, down to the time when her schools were closed by Justinian, Athens was the univer sity, as it has been called, of the world, where almost all the distinguished youth, both of the East and West, passed a certain period of study in the liberal arts, letters, and philosophy. This continued even after the establishment of Christianity. Basil and Gregory of Nazianzus studied together, and formed their youthful friendships, as Horace did, no doubt, with some of the noble or distinguished youth of the day. On this point, however, his poems are silent, and contain no allusions to his associates and rivals in study. Th

Jonnger Quintus Cicero was at this time likewise a student a Athens, but there is no clew to connect these two names.1

The advantages which Horace derived from his residence in Athens may be traced in his familiarity with Attic literature, or rather, with the whole range of Greek poetry, Homeric, lyric, and dramatic. In the region of his birth Greek was spoken almost a commonly as Latin;2 and Horace had already, at Rome, been in structed in the poetry of Homer. In Athens, he studied, particular

y, the comic writers; the great models of that kind of poetry whicn consists in shrewd and acute observation on actual human life, on society, manners, and morals, expressed in terse, perspicuous, and Animated verse, which he was destined, in another form, to carry to such unrivalled perfection in his own language. But he incurred a great danger, that of sinking into a third or fourth rate Greek poet, if, in a foreign language, he could have attained even to that humble eminence. He represents the genius of his country under the form of Romulus, remonstrating against this misdirection of his talents. Romulus, or, rather, the strong sense of Horace himsel gave good reason for this advice. The mine of Grecian poetry was exhausted; every place of honor was occupied; a new poet, particu. larly a stranger, could only be lost in the inglorious crowds. But this is not all. It is a law of human genius, without exception, that no man can be a great poet except in his native speech. Inspiration seems impatient of the slower process of translating our thoughts into a second language. The expression must be as free and spontaneous as the conception; and, however we may polish and refine our native style, and substitute a more tardy and elaborate for an instantaneous and inartificial mode of composition, there is a facility, a mastery, a complete harmony between "the thoughts that breaths and the words that burn," which can never be attained except in our mother tongue.

The death of Cæsar, and the arrival of Brutus at Arhens, broke up the peaceful studies of Horace. It had been surprising if the whole Roman youth, at this ardent and generous period of life, breathing the air of Pericles, Aristides, and Demosthenes, imbibing the sentiments of republican liberty from all which was the object of their study, had not thrown themselves at once into the ranks of Brutus, and rallied round the rescued but still imperilled freedom of Rome. Horace was at once advanced to the rank of military trib ane, and the command of a legion. Excepting at such critica) periods, when the ordinary course of military promotion was superseded by the exigencies of the times, when it was no doubt difficult for Brutus to find Roman officers for his newly-raised troops, the son of a freedman, of no very robust frame, and altogether inexperienced in war, would not have acquired that rank. His appointment, as he acknowledges, on account of his ignoble birth excited jealousy.*

1. Weichert de L. Vorio, &c., p. 328.

3. Sat i, 10, 31, seoq.

2. Sat. i., 10, 30.

4 Bat i u, 46, seg

Yet he acquired the confidence of his commanders, and, unle::s h has highly colored his hard service, was engaged in some difficultie and perils. It is probable that while in the army of Brutus hư crossed over into Asia. Though it is not quite clear that he was present at Clazomena when the quarrel took place between Persius and Rupilius Rex, which forms the subject of Sat. i., 7, and his local knowledge of Lebcdos, which has been appealed to, is not absolutely certain; yet some of his descriptive epithets appear too distinct and faithful for mere borrowed and conventional poetic language He must have visited parts of Greece at some period of his life, as ae speaks of not having been so much struck by the rich plain of Larissa, or the more rugged district of Lacedæmon, as by the head .ong Anio and the grove of Tibur.3


The battle of Philippi closed the military career of Horace. Hiv conduct after the battle, his flight, and throwing away his shield, have been the subject of much grave animadversion and as grave defence. Lessing wrote an ingenious essay to vindicate the morals and the courage of Horace.1 Wieland goes still further in his as sertion of the poet's valor: "Horace could not have called up the remembrance of the hero (Brutus), by whom he was beloved, with out reproaching himself for having yielded to the instinct of person al safety instead of dying with him; and, according to my feeling non bene is a sign of regret which he offers to the memory of that great man, and an expression of that shame of which a noble spirit alone is capable.' The foolish and fatal precipitancy with which Brutus and Cassius, upon the first news of defeat, instead of attempt. ing to rally their broken troops, and to maintain the conflict for liber ty, took refuge in suicide, might appear, to the shrewd good sens of Horace, very different from the death of Cato, of which he has Σ pressed his admiration. And Wieland had forgotten that Horac fairly confesses his fears, and attributes his escape to Mercury, the god of letters. Lessing is no doubt right that the playful allusion of the poet to his throwing away his shield has been taken much more in earnest than was intended; and the passage, after all, is a imitation, if not a translation, from Alcæus. In its most literal sense it amounts to no more than that Horace fled with the rest of the de feated army, not that he showed any want of valor during the battle He abandoned the cause of Brutus when it was not merely desperate. but extinct. Messala had refused to take the command of the broken roops, and had passed over to the other side; a few only, among

om was the friend of Horace, Pompeius Varus, threw themselves into the fleet of Sextus Pompeius, a pirate rather than a political

1. Ode ii., 7, 1.

2. Epist. i., 11, 6.

3. Ode i, 7, 11

4. Werke, ix, p. 126, 173. Lessing is completely successful in repelling a mor disgraceful imputation upon the memory of the poet. In a passage of Senec some foolish commentator had substituted the name of Horatius for a certain I Hostius, a man of peculiar profligacy.

5. Wieland, Horazens Briefe, b. ii., p. 161.

& Ode ., 7 1!

leader. Liberty may be said to have deserted Horace rather thar Horace liberty; and, happily for mankind, he felt that his calling was to more peaceful pursuits.

Horace found his way back, it is uncertain in what manner, to Rome.2 But his estate was confiscated; some new coactor was col lecting the price of his native fields, which his father had perhaps acquired through former confiscations; for Venusia was one of the eighteen cities assigned by the victorious triumvirate to their soldiers. On his return to Rome, nothing can have been well more dark or hopeless than the condition of our poet. He was too obscure to be marked by proscription, or may have found security in some gen. eral act of amnesty to the inferior followers of Brutus. But the friends which he had already made were on the wrong side in poli tics; he had no family connections, no birth to gild his poverty. It was probably at this period of his life that he purchased the place of scribe in the quæstor's office; but from what source he derived the purchase money—the wreck of his fortunes, old debts, or the liberality of his friends-we can only conjecture.* On the profits of this place he managed to live with the utmost frugality. His ordinary fare was but a vegetable diet, his household stuff of the meanest ware. He was still poor, and his poverty embollened and urged him to be a poet.



THE state of Roman poetry, and its history, up to the time when Horace began to devote himself to it, is indispensable to a just estimate of his place among the poets of Rome. Rome, according to

1. Manilius, i., 859, seqq.

2 It is difficult to place the peril shipwreck off Cape Palinurus, on the west ED coast of Lucania (Ode iii., 4, 28), in any part of the poet's life. It is not impos able that, by the accident of finding a more ready passage that way, or even for concealment, he may have made the more circuitous voyage toward Rome, and 80 encountered this danger. 3. Appian, B. C., iv., 3.

4. "Scriptum quæstorium comparavit." (Sueton., in Vit.) There is only ona passage in his poetry which can be construed into an allusion to this occupation, unless the "hated business" (invisa negotia) which compelled him to go, at times to Rome, related to the duties of his office. The college of scribes seem to have thought that they had a claim to his support in something which concerned their common interest (Sat, il., 6, 36, seq.). But in the account which he gives of the manner in which he usually spent the day (Sat. i., 6, 120), the e is no ailusica to officia business.

Le modern theory, had her mythic and Homeric age; her early hustory is but her epic cycle transmuted into prose. The probability that Rome possessed this older poetry, and the internal evidence for .ts existence, are strong, if not conclusive.

If from the steppes of Tartary to the shores of Peru-if in variou degrees of excellence from the inimitable epics of Homer to the wild ditties of the South Sea islanders-scarcely any nation or tribe in without its popular songs, is it likely that Rome alone should have been barren, unimaginative, unmusical, without its sacred bards, or, if ts bards were not invested with religious sanctity, without its popalar minstrels; Rome, with so much to kindle the imagination and sti the heart; Rome, peopled by a race necessarily involved in adven. turous warfare, and instinct with nationality, and with the rivalry of contending orders? In Rome every thing seems to conspire, which in all other countries, in all other races, has kindled the song of the bard. When, therefore, we find the history as it is handed down to us, though obviously having passed through the chill and unimaginative older chronicle, still nevertheless instinct with infelt poetry, can we doubt where it had its origin?

"The early history of Rome," observes Mr. Macaulay, "is in deed far more poetical than any thing else in Latin literature. The leves of the Vestal and the God of War, the cradle laid among the reds of the Tiber, the fig-tree, the she-wolf, the shepherd's cabin, the recognition, the fratricide, the rape of the Sabines, the death of Tarpeia, the fall of Hostus Hostilius, the struggle of Mettus Curtius through the marsh, the women rushing with torn raiment and dishevelled hair between their fathers and their husbands, the nightly meetings of Numa and the Nymph by the well in the sacred grove, the fight of the three Romans and the three Albans, the purchase of the Sibylline books, the crime of Tullia, the simulated madness of Brutus, the ambiguous reply of the Delphian oracle to the Tarquins, the wrongs of Lucretia, the heroic actions of Horatius Cocles, of Scævola, and of Clalia, the battle of Regillus won by the aid of Castor and Pollux, the fall of Cremera, the touching story of Coriolanus, the still more touching story of Virginia, the wild legend about the draining of the Alban Lake, the combat between Valerius Corvus and the gigantic Gaul, are among the many instances which will at once suggest themselves to every reader." But this poetic cycle had ceased to exist in its form long before the days of Livy and of Horace. old arval songs, of the Salian verses, of songs sung at triumphs or at feasts, by individual guests, in praise of illustrious, men, and at funer als. but these were mostly brief, religious, or occasional. Of the panegyrie, or family songs, Cicero deplores the total loss. The verses to which Ennius alludes, as sung by the Fauns and Bards the ancient verses which existed before there was any real poetry

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2 Quoted in the Brutus Cicero, which refers them to the verses of Nævius

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