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DE FEMINIS ROMANIS

Livy I. 8-13: The Rape of the Sabine Women

Romulus (after killing his brother) expands the city, creates the Senate, and acquires wives in the traditional way.

8. Crescebat interim urbs munitionibus alia atque alia adpetendo loca,
cum in spem magis futurae multitudinis quam ad id quod tum hominum
erat munirent. Deinde, ne vana urbis magnitudo esset, adiciendae
multitudinis causa vetere consilio condentium urbes, qui obscuram atque
humilem conciendo ad se multitudinem, natam e terra sibi prolem
ementiebantur, locum qui nunc saeptus descendentibus inter duos lucos
est, asylum aperit. Eo ex finitimis populis turba omnis, sine discrimine
liber an servus esset, avida novarum rerum perfugit, idque primum ad
coeptam magnitudinem roboris fuit. Cum iam virium haud paeniteret,
consilium deinde viribus parat. Centum creat senatores, sive quia is
numerus satis erat, sive quia soli centum erant qui creari patres possent.
Patres certe ab honore, patriciique progenies eorum appellati.

* Indicates words, expressions, points to be learned.
1 munitio building, fortification (cf. line 3 munio build, secure, fortify)
alia atque alia one after another, more and more
* appeto try to get, approach, attack
2 ad id quod "for that which"
hominum partitive genitive with quod
4 * consilium policy, direction, strategy, guidance
condentium participle used as agent ("of those founding/building")
5 concieo assemble
natam (esse)
* proles, -is f. offspring
6 The depression on the Capitoline between two elevations on which were groves of trees.
saepio enclose, hedge, fence
ementior, -iri, itus pretend
7 asylum (as) a sanctuary
* eo to that place, thither
8 roboris gen. with primum.
robor, -oris, m. strength
9-10 virium, viribus < vis. "When Romulus was satisfied with his strength."
11-12 patres, the heads of families, Senators
sive ...sive whether...or
12 ab honore as a distinction

9. Iam res Romana adeo erat valida ut cuilibet finitimarum civitatum
bello par esset; sed penuria mulierum hominis aetatem duratura
magnitudo erat, quippe quibus nec domi spes prolis nec cum finitimis
conubia essent. Tum ex consilio patrum Romulus legatos circa vicinas
gentes misit, qui societatem conubiumque novo populo peterent: urbes
quoque, ut cetera, ex infimo nasci; dein, quas sua virtus ac di iuvent,
magnas opes sibi magnumque nomen facere; satis scire origini Romanae
et deos adfuisse et non defuturam virtutem; proinde ne gravarentur
homines cum hominibus sanguinem ac genus miscere. Nusquam benigne
legatio audita est; adeo simul spernebant, simul tantam in medio
crescentem molem sibi ac posteris suis metuebant. A plerisque
rogitantibus dimissi, ecquod feminis quoque asylum aperuissent; id enim
demum compar conubium fore. Aegre id Romana pubes passa, et haud
dubie ad vim spectare res coepit.

1 * adeo so, very, indeed qui/quae/quodlibet anyone you will
2 penuria ablative of cause shortage, lack aetatem "for a generation"
3 quippe quibus because of course they had (dat. of possession). The relative clause expresses cause.
* domi (locative) at home
4 conubia right to contract legal marriages ex consilio on the advice of
4-5 qui peterent rel. clause of purpose to seek
5-8 infinitives in indirect statement: the argument of the legati with the verb of "saying" omitted.
6 infimus (superlative of inferior) lowest
iuvent subjunctive, subordinate clause in indirect statement
7 the subject of scire is se (the envoys themselves)
origini dat. with adsum
8 proinde therefore, consequently
* et...et both...and
defuturam (esse) future infinitive of desum
gravor be annoyed, disdain, object to
gravarentur jussive subjunctive
10 simul ... simul both ... and at the same time
11 * moles, is, f. mass
12 ecquod whether any
13 * fore = futurum esse
12-13 aegre id passa (est) insulted by this

Cui tempus locumque aptum ut daret Romulus, aegritudinem animi
dissimulans, ludos ex industria parat Neptuno equestri sollemnis;
Consualia vocat. Indici deinde finitimis spectaculum iubet, quantoque
apparatu tum sciebant aut poterant concelebrant, ut rem claram
exspectatamque facerent. Multi mortales convenere, studio etiam
videndae novae urbis, maximi proximi quique, Caeninenses, Crustumini,
Antemnates; etiam Sabinorum omnis multitudo cum liberis ac coniugibus
venit. Invitati hospitaliter per domos, cum situm moeniaque et
frequentem tectis urbem vidissent, mirantur tam brevi rem Romanam
crevisse.

1 cui refers to vim in the previous sentence
dissimulo conceal, pretend
aegritudo animi resentment, distress
2 ex industria on purpose
Neptunus equestris: The Greek Poseidon, to whom in the watery world the Roman Neptune corresponds, is also credited with making the first horse.
sollemnis accusative plural in agreement with ludos
3 The Consualia (named after Consus, the god of the granary) were celebrated in mid-August and mid-December.
indici to be advertised
5 convenere = convenerunt
* -ere = -erunt (3rd plural, pf. act. indicative)
6. proximi quique whoever [was] nearest
6-7 Caeninenses, Crustumini, Antemnates, the inhabitants of ancient Latin towns, Caenina, Crustumerium or Crustuminum, Antemnae.
7 * liberi , -orum, m/f. children
9 frequens crowded
tam brevi in so short a time
10 crevisse < cresco

Ubi spectaculi tempus venit, deditaeque eo mentes cum oculis erant, tum
ex composito orta vis, signoque dato iuventus Romana ad rapiendas
virgines discurrit. Magna pars forte in quem quaeque inciderat raptae;
quasdam forma excellentes primoribus patrum destinatas ex plebe
homines, quibus datum negotium erat, domos deferebant. unam longe
ante alias specie ac pulchritudine insignem a globo Thalassii cuiusdam
raptam ferunt, multisque sciscitantibus cuinam eam ferrent, identidem, ne
quis violaret, Thalassio ferri clamitatum; inde nuptialem hanc vocem
factam.

(You may wish to compare the painting by Nicolas Poussin.)

11 dedo give up/away/over eo to/on that, on the games
12 ex composito as agreed, as pre-arranged
* orior, -iri, ortus/-a sum (deponent) begin, arise
13 *forte by chance
in quem the antecedent is omitted. Supply ab eo [Romano].
raptae [sunt] with pars: plural verb with singular according to the sense of magna pars ["most of them"].
quaeque <
*quisque each
14 quasdam < *quidam certain, a certain one
destino appoint, select, designate
14-15 ex plebe homines men of plebeian rank
15 domos home, homeward
16 globus crowd
17 raptam (esse)
*ferunt they say
sciscitor seek to know, ask
cuinam < quisnam who? [dative: "for whom"]
identidem again and again, repeatedly
18 *quis = aliquis After si, nisi, num, and ne Ali goes on holiday!
Thalassio a wedding cry, perhaps of Sabine origin. Thalassius the man is an invention to explain the ancient cry.
ferri present passive infinitive of * fero
clamitatum (esse) it was shouted

Turbato per metum ludicro maesti parentes virginum profugiunt,
incusantes violati hospitii scelus deumque invocantes, cuius ad sollemne
ludosque per fas ac fidem decepti venissent. Nec raptis aut spes de se
melior aut indignatio est minor. Sed ipse Romulus circumibat docebatque
patrum id superbia factum, qui conubium finitimis negassent; illas tamen
in matrimonio in societate fortunarum omnium civitatisque et quo nihil
carius humano generi sit, liberum fore; mollirent modo iras et, quibus fors
corpora dedisset, darent animos. Saepe ex iniuria postmodum gratiam
ortam, eoque melioribus usuras viris, quod adnisurus pro se quisque sit ut,
cum suam vicem functus officio sit, parentium etiam patriaeque expleat
desiderium. Accedebant blanditiae virorum factum purgantium cupiditate
atque amore, quae maxime ad muliebre ingenium efficaces preces sunt.

1 maestus, -a, -um sad, sorrowful, disgruntled
2 sollemne, -is, n. festival, religious celebration
incuso -are inveigh against
3 per contrary to
raptis dat. of possession, fem. (refers to the victims)
5 superbia ablative of cause ("because of the arrogance of...")
6-7 [He said] that "they would be married, in a partnership of (that is sharing in, and so not as slaves) all the fortunes of the state and of the children than which nothing is dearer to the human race"
6 quo abl. of comparison
7 liberum = liberorum < * liberi children
* fore = futurum [here futuras] esse
mollirent jussive "let them moderate"
* modo only
8 gratia favor, affection
9 eoque and therefore
adnisurus < adnitor exert oneself, strive
usuras < utor, uti, usus/-a sum use, enjoy + ablative
pro se one's best, one's utmost
10 suam vicem for his part (as a husband)
parentium ... patriae objective genitives with desiderium
11 accedebant "there were added"
purgantium with virorum "justifying... and saying that"
11-12 cupiditate, amore ablative of cause

The captured brides are mollified, but their parents want war. In the omitted parts, first Caeninenses, then Antemnates, and finally Crustumini attack and are defeated.

10. Iam admodum mitigati animi raptis erant; at raptarum parentes tum
maxime sordida veste lacrimisque et querellis civitates concitabant. Nec
domi tantum indignationes continebant, sed congregabantur undique ad
T. Tatium regem Sabinorum, et legationes eo, quod maximum Tatii
nomen in iis regionibus erat, conveniebant. Caeninenses Crustuminique
et Antemnates erant ad quos eius iniuriae pars pertinebat. ...

11. Fusi igitur primo impetu et clamore hostes; oppidum captum;
duplicique victoria ovantem Romulum Hersilia coniunx precibus raptarum
fatigata orat ut parentibus earum det veniam et in civitatem accipiat; ita
rem coalescere concordia posse. Facile impetratum. Inde contra
Crustuminos profectus bellum inferentes. Ibi minus etiam, quod alienis
cladibus ceciderant animi, certaminis fuit. Utroque coloniae missae;
plures inventi qui propter ubertatem terrae in Crustuminum nomina
darent. Et Romam inde frequenter migratum est, a parentibus maxime ac
propinquis raptarum.

1 * admodum very, quite, fully
2 sordida veste as a sign of mourning concito (1) stir up
3 * domi at home
* tantum only
4 eo to that place
7 fusi < fundo pour, shed, scatter, rout (refers to the Antemnates)
7-8 duplicique victoria over the Caeninenses and Antemnates, abl. of cause
8 *ovo (1) celebrate, be triumphant (participle with Romulum, obj. of orat)
fatigata < fatigo -are tire out, wear down
10 concordia ablative of manner
impetro (I) achieve, obtain a request
11 *clades, -is, f. disaster, ruin, defeat
12 *certamen -inis, n. contest, match, struggle
utroque to both places (Antemnae and Crustuminum)
nomina dare to enlist, sign up for

11. Novissimum ab Sabinis bellum ortum, multoque id maximum fuit;
nihil enim per iram aut cupiditatem actum est, nec ostenderunt bellum
prius quam intulerunt. Consilio etiam additus dolus. Sp. Tarpeius
Romanae praeerat arci. Huius filiam virginem auro corrumpit Tatius ut
armatos in arcem accipiat; aquam forte ea tum sacris extra moenia
petitum ierat. Accepti obrutam armis necavere, seu ut vi capta potius arx
videretur, seu prodendi exempli causa, ne quid usquam fidum proditori
esset. Additur fabula quod vulgo Sabini aureas armillas magni ponderis
bracchio laevo gemmatosque magna specie anulos habuerint, pepigisse
eam quod in sinistris manibus haberent; eo scuta illi pro aureis donis
congesta. Sunt qui eam ex pacto tradendi quod in sinistris manibus esset
derecto arma petisse dicant, et fraude visam agere, sua ipsam peremptam
mercede.

1 novissimum last, latest
multo abl. of degree of difference by far
3 dolus deceit, treachery
Sp. Abbrev. of Spurius, a Roman cognomen
4 praeerat < praesum be in charge of (+ dat.)
arx, arcis, f. stronghold, citadel (on Capitoline)
5 armatos (< armo, -are) perf. pass. ptcpl. as an adj. with viros understood.
*forte by chance
sacris for the rituals
petitum supine with verb of motion "to fetch"
ierat < *eo, ire, ii, itum go
6 obrutam (eam) < obruo, -ere, obrui, obrutum cover over, overwhelm
necavere = necaverunt * -ere = -erunt
6-7 seu ... seu whether ... or
7 After si, nisi, num, and ne, ali- takes a holiday (from aliquis, aliquid)
8 vulgo commonly, usually
9 pepigisse < pango, -ere, panxi/pepigi, pactum agree, contract for
10 congesta < congero -ere, -gessi, -gestum shower, heap
illi = Tarpeiae
11 ex pacto tradendi "according to her stipulation of [their] handing over"
12 derecto straight, outright
peremptam (esse) < *perimo destroy, kill
12-13 sua mercede by her own reward/bargain

In chapter 12 the battle goes back and forth, but at the end the Romans have the upper hand.

12. Tenuere tamen arcem Sabini ... Sed res Romana erat superior.

13. Tum Sabinae mulieres, quarum ex iniuria bellum ortum erat, crinibus
passis scissaque veste victo malis muliebri pavore, ausae se inter tela
volantia inferre, ex transverso impetu facto dirimere infestas acies,
dirimere iras, hinc patres hinc viros orantes ne sanguine se nefando soceri
generique respergerent, ne parricidio macularent partus suos, nepotum illi,
hi liberum progeniem. "Si adfinitatis inter vos, si conubii piget, in nos
vertite iras; nos causa belli, nos vulnerum ac caedium viris ac parentibus
sumus; melius peribimus quam sine alteris vestrum viduae aut orbae
vivemus." Movet res cum multitudinem tum duces; silentium et repentina
fit quies; inde ad foedus faciendum duces prodeunt; nec pacem modo, sed
civitatem unam ex duabus faciunt. Regnum consociant: imperium omne
conferunt Romam. Ita geminata urbe, ut Sabinis tamen aliquid daretur,
Quirites a Curibus appellati. ... Ex bello tam tristi laeta repente pax
cariores Sabinas viris ac parentibus et ante omnes Romulo ipsi fecit.
Itaque cum populum in curias triginta divideret, nomina earum curiis
inposuit.

1 quarum objective genitive
2 passis < pando spread out, let fly
scissa < scindo tear apart, rend
3 ex transverso sideways, crosswise (i.e. they ran in between the two sides)
3, 4 dirimo part, put an end to
4 socer, -i, m. father-in-law
5 gener, -i, m. son-in-law
partus, -us, m. birth, young
7 vulnus/volnus, -eris, n. wound
9 * cum ... tum both ... and
13 Quirites a Curibus a folk etymology, not accepted. Cures was the major Sabine city. The Romans called themselves Quirites.
15 curia an early division of the Roman people

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