Posted by: Frederick Cornwell Sanders | 2013/11/03

“November 3, 39” by Rick Sanders

English: Bust of the Roman poet Lucan, Córdoba...

English: Bust of the Roman poet Lucan, Córdoba, Spain Italiano: Busto del poeta latino Lucano, Cordova, Spagna Español: Busto del poeta romano Lucano, Córdoba, España (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On November 3, 39, Lucan, the Roman poet is born. Lucan dies in 65 AD. From Wikipedia we read:

Marcus Annaeus Lucanus (November 3, 39 AD – April 30, 65 AD), better known in English as Lucan, was a Roman poet, born in Corduba (modern-day Córdoba), in the Hispania Baetica. Despite his short life, he is regarded as one of the outstanding figures of the Imperial Latin period. His youth and speed of composition set him apart from other poets.

The Pharsalia (also known as De Bello Civili “On the Civil War” or also simply Bellum Civile “The Civil War”) is a Roman epic poem by the poet Lucan, telling of the civil war between Julius Caesar and the forces of the Roman Senate led by Pompey the Great. The poem’s title is a reference to the Battle of Pharsalus, which occurred in 48 BC, near Pharsalus, Thessaly, in northern Greece. Caesar decisively defeated Pompey in this battle, which occupies all of the epic’s seventh book. Though probably incomplete, the poem is widely considered the best epic poem of the Silver Age of Latin literature.

Bella per Emathios plus quam civilia campos iusque datum sceleri canimus, populumque potentem in sua victrici conversum viscera dextra cognatasque acies, et rupto foedere regni certatum totis concussi viribus orbis in commune nefas, infestisque obvia signis signa, pares aquilas et pila minantia pilis. Wars worse than civil on Emathian plains, and crime let loose we sing; how Rome‘s high race plunged in her vitals her victorious sword; armies akin embattled, with the force of all the shaken earth bent on the fray; and burst asunder, to the common guilt, a kingdom’s compact; eagle with eagle met, standard to standard, spear opposed to spear.

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