Question about Apuleius' Metamorphoses

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pmda
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Question about Apuleius' Metamorphoses

Post by pmda » Tue Nov 27, 2018 10:51 am

In 1.6 of Apuleius' Metamorphoses we have:

At vero domi tuae iam defletus et conclamatus es; liberis tuis tutores iuridici provincialis decreto dati; uxor persolutis inferialibus officiis, luctu et maerore diuturno deformata, diffletis paene ad extremam captivitatem oculis suis, domus infortunium novarum nuptiarum gaudiis a suis sibi parentibus hilarare compellitur.

At tu hic larvale simulacrum cum summo dedecore nostro viseris. "


I'm interested in the exact form of the last word viseris. I have translated the last sentence as:

But here you are like a ghost looking upon our greatest humiliation.

Loeb translates this as "And you show up here, the image of a ghost, to our utter shame!’"

What exactly is viseris doing in this sentence. Is it active? passive? What is the tense - future 2nd pers. singular? The dictionaries tell us it means to go and see or look at.

Does my translation better capture the grammatical role of viseris?

The interesting thing is that it doesn't appear to have a direct object. So it's sense is 'while you look - we are ashamed'. Perhaps the Loeb capture it better after all with 'you show up here'.

anphph
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Re: Question about Apuleius' Metamorphoses

Post by anphph » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:25 pm

viseris is present passive indicative from visere. So your translation is wrong and the Loeb gets it right. It should be something like

And yet you appear here [hic] now [:: are seen] as a ghostly figure to our great disgrace.

Visere is not Videre, and so is not often used, as the latter, with a medio-passive sense to mean "to seem" [apparere]. But here that is the case, with a stronger sense to mean "you are looked upon" rather than a mere "you seem".

pmda
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Re: Question about Apuleius' Metamorphoses

Post by pmda » Tue Nov 27, 2018 3:37 pm

Many thanks.

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