Textkit Logo

Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Here's where you can discuss all things Latin. Use this board to ask questions about grammar, discuss learning strategies, get translation help and more!

Moderator: thesaurus

Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby quickly » Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:51 am

Salve,

I am having trouble with Ovid'sArs Amatoria lines 5-6 and 15-16. We just finished Wheelock's in class (over the course of 2.5-3 quarters), and are assigning ourselves "real Latin." So, for this week we chose Ars Amatoria Liber I 1-262 and Metamorphoses 1-252. The Metamorphoses is fine - perhaps due to its style, but I really have little problem sorting it out. The Ars Amatoria, on the other hand...So:

curribus Automedon lentisque erat aptus habenis,
Tiphys in Haemonia puppe magister erat: (5-6)

"Which, translated roughly, I believe means: "Automedon was apt [skilled] with the chariot reigns [of Achilles], [and] Tiphys in Haemonia was [a] master of [to] the deck [of the Argo]."

What I don't understand is what "lentisque" is doing here. I believe "lentus, -a, -um" means something like "clinging, slow, sluggish, tough, lazy." This doesn't seem like the kind of adjective to apply to a chariot of Achilles.

quas Hector sensurus erat, poscente magistro
verberibus iussas praebuit ille manus.

This doesn't make a lot of sense to me, even though I "get the gist." So the hand is Achilles', and Hector is about to know (feel, experience, etc.) it. What doesn't make sense is the case of the words "quas," "ille," "manus," and "iussus." If "manus" is plural, then "quas" would go with it - to "The hands that Hector, about to know [them]." But then "ille" wouldn't go with anything, except maybe "Hector." Also: "ververibus" and "iussas" - perhaps "that, having been ordered...for flogging [beating]."

Thanks.
quickly
Textkit Neophyte
 
Posts: 54
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2008 9:18 pm

Re: Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby adrianus » Thu Feb 18, 2010 3:27 pm

Salve Quickly/Celeriter
curribus lentis = difficult-to-handle chariots

quas Hector sensurus erat, poscente magistro
verberibus iussas praebuit ille manus.


"which [hands] Hector would come to experience, he [the person mentioned earlier] offered [his] hands [as] ordered, the teacher having demanded, for slaps [i.e., he held out his hands to be slapped when the teacher demanded it, the same hands that would be laid on Hector] "
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
adrianus
Textkit Zealot
 
Posts: 3270
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 9:45 pm

Re: Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby modus.irrealis » Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:31 am

Wouldn't "lentis" have to go with "habenis" here, as it belongs to the second clause? "lentae habenae" = "flexible reins"?
modus.irrealis
Textkit Zealot
 
Posts: 1093
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2006 6:08 am
Location: Toronto

Re: Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby Damoetas » Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:46 am

curribus Automedon lentisque erat aptus habenis,
Tiphys in Haemonia puppe magister erat: (5-6)


Yes: as modus.irrealis points out, the -que marks the start of a new noun phrase: "Automedon was skilled with the chariot and with the flexible reins..."

quas Hector sensurus erat, poscente magistro
verberibus iussas praebuit ille manus.


Adrianus' explanation is right. The Latin sentence can be tricky to process mentally.... But notice how the sense builds up slowly, bit by bit, with the dramatic word manus saved till the very end. The more you can train yourself to understand it in the Latin word order, the more you will appreciate it.... When you read just the first part, quas Hector sensurus erat, you know it means, "those [whatever: feminine plural something] which Hector would one day feel..." poscente magistro... "when his teacher demanded..." verberibus iussas || praebuit ille... "as ordered, to be beaten [verse caesura, dramatic pause] he gave over..." manus - "his hands!" Probably when you're halfway through the sentence, with the mention of magistro and verberibus, you realize that the feminine plural thing under discussion must be manus. Still, it's impressive and satisfying when that expectation is finally fulfilled at the end.

From another perspective, the core of the sentence is very compact; it's the last three words: praebuit ille manus. What makes things interesting is that you hear all these modifiers coming at the beginning, and you have to sort of keep them suspended in your mind before you have something to slot them into. But that is a skill that comes with practice....
Dic mihi, Damoeta, 'cuium pecus' anne Latinum?
Damoetas
Textkit Fan
 
Posts: 216
Joined: Thu Mar 12, 2009 6:31 pm
Location: Chicago

Re: Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby quickly » Fri Feb 19, 2010 9:22 am

"which [hands] Hector would come to experience, he [the person mentioned earlier] offered [his] hands [as] ordered, the teacher having demanded, for slaps [i.e., he held out his hands to be slapped when the teacher demanded it, the same hands that would be laid on Hector] "


Adrianus' explanation is right. The Latin sentence can be tricky to process mentally.... But notice how the sense builds up slowly, bit by bit, with the dramatic word manus saved till the very end. The more you can train yourself to understand it in the Latin word order, the more you will appreciate it.... When you read just the first part, quas Hector sensurus erat, you know it means, "those [whatever: feminine plural something] which Hector would one day feel..." poscente magistro... "when his teacher demanded..." verberibus iussas || praebuit ille... "as ordered, to be beaten [verse caesura, dramatic pause] he gave over..." manus - "his hands!" Probably when you're halfway through the sentence, with the mention of magistro and verberibus, you realize that the feminine plural thing under discussion must be manus. Still, it's impressive and satisfying when that expectation is finally fulfilled at the end.


Thank you both. The sense of the sentence makes much more sense now. One confusing aspect was that the active periphrastic construction was neither plural nor feminine, and so I was having a hard time connecting it with "quas...manus" phrase; I now know, however, that it modifies Hector.

Yes, it takes time to process the Latin in the order intended. And of course, there is always a sense of accomplishment when I can read several lines as such! But I am working slowly through the poem, reading and rereading it, in order to get such a sense; but of course, then it is hard not to "skim" with the English
sense in mind!

Wouldn't "lentis" have to go with "habenis" here, as it belongs to the second clause? "lentae habenae" = "flexible reins"?


Yes, I think you're right. The other choice I had was to construe it as something like "tough" or "inflexible" reins; but "flexible, light" or perhaps "flowing" works well.

Thank you all.
quickly
Textkit Neophyte
 
Posts: 54
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2008 9:18 pm

Re: Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby adrianus » Fri Feb 19, 2010 11:25 am

modus.irrealis wrote:Wouldn't "lentis" have to go with "habenis" here, as it belongs to the second clause? "lentae habenae" = "flexible reins"?

You're right. Rectè dicis.
I'm writing in Latin hoping for correction, and not because I'm confident in how I express myself. Latinè scribo ut ab omnibus corrigar, non quod confidenter me exprimam.
adrianus
Textkit Zealot
 
Posts: 3270
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 9:45 pm

Re: Ars Amatoria Liber I lines 5-6 and 15-16

Postby Damoetas » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:16 pm

One confusing aspect was that the active periphrastic construction was neither plural nor feminine, and so I was having a hard time connecting it with "quas...manus" phrase; I now know, however, that it modifies Hector.


Just one more tiny point: I wouldn't quite describe the construction this way.... And would be good to be very clear about it, so you'll recognize similar constructions in the future. In this case, quas Hector sensurus erat is a relative clauses that modifies manus. Within the relative clause, Hector is the subject and sensurus erat is the main verb. The relative pronoun quas is accusative because, within the relative clause, it is the object of sensurus erat; it is feminine plural to agree with its head, which will come later, manus. You could draw everything out schematically as follows:

[[quas Hector sensurus erat] manus] praebuit ille

The reason why this is confusing is because the relative clause precedes its head. But this is actually pretty common in Latin, especially in Ovid. Here are a few examples from Book 1 of the Metamorphoses, where relative clauses precede their heads:

Ante mare et terras et, quod tegit omnia, caelum …
"Before the sea and land, and the sky which covers everything..." (5).

cum, quae pressa diu fuerant caligine caeca,
sidera coeperunt toto effervescere caelo.

"...when the stars, which had long been pressed down in murky darkness, began to shine throughout the whole sky" (70-1).

et, quae deciderant patula Iovis arbore, glandes.
"and acorns, which had fallen from Jove's spreading tree" (106).

quaeque diu steterant in montibus altis,
fluctibus ignotis insultavere carinae …

"and ships' keels, which had long been standing in lofty mountains, leaped into unknown waves" (133-4).
Dic mihi, Damoeta, 'cuium pecus' anne Latinum?
Damoetas
Textkit Fan
 
Posts: 216
Joined: Thu Mar 12, 2009 6:31 pm
Location: Chicago


Return to Learning Latin

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: bedwere, swtwentyman and 70 guests