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Translation help - adapting Virgil

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Translation help - adapting Virgil

Postby SimchaZissel » Wed May 24, 2017 2:36 pm

There is a sentence in the Aeneid, describing the fall of Troy that goes as follows:

at domus interior gemitu miseroque tumultu
miscetur, penitusque cauae plangoribus aedes
femineis ululant; ferit aurea sidera clamor ( Book II, 486-8)

The translation is:

But inside all was confusion and lamentation, and deep into the house the hollow chambers rang with the wailing of women, and their cries rose to strike the golden stars. (David West, Penguin).

I am writing a poem, mainly in English, but with a bit of Latin, and would like to adapt the phrase from the Aeneid to say "and their cries rose to strike the circle/ring of golden stars." (the imagery I want is that of the EU flag). My dictionary gave me a lot of options for circle, or ring, and the most straightforward seems to be circulus, but I'm not sure 1. Whether it can be used as an adjective or just a noun (my dictionary simply listed it as a noun) - obviously nouns can be used in the construct form, but 2. How exactly would it be expressed - is it as simple as "ferit circulus aurea sidera clamor"?
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Re: Translation help - adapting Virgil

Postby Barry Hofstetter » Wed May 24, 2017 3:06 pm

SimchaZissel wrote:There is a sentence in the Aeneid, describing the fall of Troy that goes as follows:

at domus interior gemitu miseroque tumultu
miscetur, penitusque cauae plangoribus aedes
femineis ululant; ferit aurea sidera clamor ( Book II, 486-8)

The translation is:

But inside all was confusion and lamentation, and deep into the house the hollow chambers rang with the wailing of women, and their cries rose to strike the golden stars. (David West, Penguin).

I am writing a poem, mainly in English, but with a bit of Latin, and would like to adapt the phrase from the Aeneid to say "and their cries rose to strike the circle/ring of golden stars." (the imagery I want is that of the EU flag). My dictionary gave me a lot of options for circle, or ring, and the most straightforward seems to be circulus, but I'm not sure 1. Whether it can be used as an adjective or just a noun (my dictionary simply listed it as a noun) - obviously nouns can be used in the construct form, but 2. How exactly would it be expressed - is it as simple as "ferit circulus aurea sidera clamor"?


I assume you are not concerned with preserving the hexameter? :) If you want to use circulus:

ferit circulum aureorum siderum clamor (the cries strike the circle of golden stars).
N.E. Barry Hofstetter
The Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
Semper melius Latine sonat...
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Re: Translation help - adapting Virgil

Postby SimchaZissel » Wed May 24, 2017 3:41 pm

Thanks so much - it's for an epigraph, so losing the hexameter doesn't bother me as much as perhaps it should!
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