Translations for Appendix I

Baptista Mantuanus published a book of verse, entitled Suburbanus, which he dedicated to Giovanni Battista Refrigerio. The proem begins:

You are content with your poor master’s moderate dress and will go forth, my poor little book, with your breast unadorned. That person errs, whoever he may be, who by means of vain finery misrepresents his wealth. Our income should equal our expenses.

And further on:

Among many persons, Venus is of greater worth than the skills of Minerva, blind Love is valued more highly, Phoebus, than your lyre. On your trumpet you proclaim that nowhere does Augustan virtue survive, moreover that Crassus is ruined and Nero reigns supreme. No one weighs all matters equitably; everyone approves not what is good but what is convenient. [11] Having been spurned, virtue flees and lust rules in her place. Both men and women rush headlong into this vice.

Afterwards Mantuan addresses his book:

Go auspiciously, my first offspring of tender youth. Go auspiciously, page privy to my thoughts. Go, I pray you; go auspiciously, I pray that you depart under a lucky omen. Poor little book, shelter [my?] first offerings. May the stars be well disposed towards you, may the gods be propitious to you and may they grant, I pray, that you be read by many ages to come.

And further on:

What I now publish came forth six feet at a time. Much remains that was written in unequal waves [i.e., in elegiac verse]. [21] My Elegy keeps many pages of verse close to her bosom and skillfully conceals her delights. She herself will yield up her riches ungrudgingly when she knows how she can please her author. Meanwhile read over these unhappy poems that console the emotions while the noble product of my expectation continues to grow.

The argument of Suburbanus—or rather of the fragment—begins:

Faustus and Fortunatus—shepherds both, both of graver years—neared the same fields. They recounted the deeds of their youth, the truth having been left at home...

Faustus and Fortunatus are speakers in Suburbanus.

Mantuan goes on, in prose:

a more sensible mind’s knowledge of love’s madness is the argument of the eclogue.

And further on:

I would not publish these childish pieces if they were not already widely spread abroad and if I didn’t know that they are being read as having been written by me.

And further on, in verse:

[30] Would that I might teach you that nothing is more harmful than Venus’ flames. Alas, it is a deadly pestilence, a harsh and cruel poison. Ravaging mortal breasts with its deadly flames, driving men into a frenzy and sending them into battle, intemperate Love delights in war and spilled blood. With good cause judicious antiquity represented him as blind. For that boy spares or fears no one. He lets fly his grim darts and fieryhaired brands indefinitely and without order. If Jupiter opposed him, that boy would pierce him with his arrows.

And further on:

[40] But lest by wandering on in lengthy discourse I weary you, hear (unless you scorn them) my injunctions. You grow weak, idly living a life agreeable in its anxiety, when you have viewed the fair countenance of a wanton girl. And to be sure her looks are the true weapons of doleful Cupid. Believe that her beauty is preparing war against you. Turn your face and your step in another direction: just as a deer flees, trembling at the lion he has seen, or as an unarmed traveler flees when he has seen a snake that, raising its head and uncoiling itself opposite him, hisses while hastening its sinuous pace through the dust. [51] Behind a woman’s countenance lurks every kind of evil: thence spring anguish, care, shouting, insults, and brawls; thence arise shame and threats, toil and endless complaining. Wandering thoughts, feigned blandishments, a changeable heart, false words, forced tears, deceitful laughter; a painted face and wanton eyes; carefully planned deception—these are a woman’s weapons! The female race is useful to us only in this: that they bear children and rear them. While you are able, don’t put to the test how much scorn this brittle sex possesses. [61] A woman is cruel, she knows no self–control: she either hates you or loves you too much. Should she try to seem open, she becomes wanton and skittish. Should she wish to be serious, a friend of severe mien, she becomes pitiless. Should a woman wish to observe due measure and control her emotions, to be guided by reason and keep her agreements and promises, she would be ignorant of how to do so. Once her sense of shame has been lost, she lapses wholly into vice. What crimes have not been attempted by the hands of women?

And further on:

[71] There is nothing greater that can subvert the minds of men. Words and grasses are less harmful, the sword less effective. Less injurious are rocks that, having become wedged [deep?] within holes in the earth, are hurled skyward by the violence of pent up sulphurous fires. A sow is not as harmful to a tender crop, a goat’s tooth to the vine or a hailstorm to the vineyards as the treacherous love of a woman’s poison is to the immature thoughts of young men and the first flower of youth. [80] You have heard of many men who have sought out infernal Tartarus and returned to their ancestoral homes? Tell me, what woman ever descended into gloomy Orcus’ realm and returned.

And further on:

Shepherd, flee the company of women, flee their snares. Should some girl, in the doubtful likeness of a goddess, come face to face with you, deny that she is a goddess and take heed of her deceptive form.

Mantuan continues in a brief passage of prose:

What follows I wrote in praise of Gregorio Tifernate, a man expert above all others of our generation in both Greek and Latin and in all the liberal arts, and at one time my teacher at Mantua. After travelling through Greece (which was then wholly in Christian hands) and Italy and traversing the schools of France, he retired to Venice to spend the rest of his life writing and teaching there. But the matter seemed otherwise to the gods above. For after he had lived a year at Venice, he suddenly died. At his side when he was dying were his very loyal students Matheus Antimachus of Mantua and Hadrianus Ciniber, who entered the same religious order with me. He was interred in the cemetery of SS John and Paul. After he died, Giorgio Merula moved up into his place. A very learned pupil of Gregorio’s to be counted among famous grammarians and rhetoricians, Merula now (as I hear) teaches both Greek and Latin with great repute at Venice.

And after many things Mantuan continues:

Flee the harmful infection of the female sex, for beneath their soft skin and radiant complexion women conceal their warfare.

And further on:

[90] Do not rely on the strength of your thoughts or on any other strength. No victory in battle will be granted to you. Only put your hope in flight. Imitate the fleeing Parthians.

And later on, Mantuan contends, concerning Elijah, our founder on Mount Carmel:

Oh, mighty father whom a fiery chariot raised on high, and you, most sacred of the prophets, for whom Jesus steeped his holy locks in the twofold river (Jesus the most high, the ruler of mighty Olympus)—why do you report that you endured the wiles of women? Because both of you found that women have hearts tainted with so much bile! [99] Come forth, almighty Father, come forth, I pray you! This cruel and harmful sex has caused enough deprivation and toil. They are harpies that loosening their bowels, taint with a foul–smelling flood bedchambers, dining rooms, banqueting tables, crossroads, churches, highways, fields, seas, rivers, and mountains. They are (if I might speak truly) Medusas: Medusa who once in far–off Lybian lands is said to have turned men to stone by her glance. Destroy, oh Father, this hateful race! Grant us a Persius, grant us a winged Bellerophon, conquorer of the Lycian Chimera: a Persius and Bellerophon to drive those impious monsters over the highest Taurian ridges and over Caucasian crags.

And later on, in prose:

As the most recent part of my life is usually directed wholly to a life of devotion, so my Suburbanus is terminated and piously concluded in praise of the most blessed virgin Mary, by whom the title particular to my religious order was conferred.

Thus conclude certain notable extracts from Baptista Mantuanus’ Book of the Rustic’s Eclogues. Adrien van Eckhoute, a Carmelite doctor from Bologna, made a complete transcription of this book from the author’s copy in 1476. Furthermore, in the same year he received his doctorate at Padua and became dean of theologians at the university there. He died in the convent at Ghent.]

[To Reverend Father in Christ and my Most Esteemed Lord Falcone de’ Sinibaldi, Protonotary and Papal Treasurer, Baptista Mantuanus, Carmelite, Wishes Health and Happiness.

I am aware that, as a man of meticulous tastes due to your outstanding intellectual abilities, you require reading matter that is able to revive the spirits and preserve honorable pleasure. For like a knife’s edge, our mental powers are dulled by exercise, and they need jests and quips, just as a knife needs the whetstone. This seems especially befitting at the beginning of the year, that is, at the most holy nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ. For among our ancestors birthdays were very festive occasions. And to restore charity and reestablish friendship at the beginning of the year, they lived more merrily, having put aside their cares, and they indulged in jests and sent presents—all of which I should also praise in Christian men, provided that there be no dereliction of one’s obligations. Prompted therefore by the nature of the season, I am dedicating and sending as a gift to you this eclogue which I composed when I was ill, so that it might be a new year’s present, a tribute to my indebtedness to you, a balm for your cares, and a memorial of me with your lordship. Farewell.

An Eclogue by Baptista Mantuanus, Carmelite, Dedicated to my Lord Falcone de’ Sinibaldi.

Candidus and Faustulus are the speakers. Candidus stands for the author. He laments that he and his flock are not favored by fortune in Latium.

Faustulus By what misfortune, Candidus, driven far from your fathers’ lands, have you come into these fields? Here are no pasturelands or rivers, no clear springs, secure sheepfolds, or shade. Yet flocks constantly pasture in these lands.
Candidus Corydon, our fellow—who once kept many herds in this region and heaped up his savings—led me, Faustulus, to believe that the grass in those hills there would be wholesome for my flock. But after I saw the listless fields, lifeless stones, and dried–up springs, I regretted my long journey and leaving my homeland behind me.
Faustulus [12] Since it has befallen you to enter safe and sound into these Latin groves, by the right of our fellowship of old, you may enter my house here. My few acres of poor land yield me barely enough for my living. Yet such as it is, consider it yours. Perhaps some favorable destiny will befall you: Dame Fortune is much like the wind. Enter my hut of reeds until the heat of the day has passed, while the cattle, sunk down within the cool shade, are chewing their cud. Lay aside your sheephook—and have a drink—so that we can talk.
Candidus Crazed by so much heat, what man would refuse?
Faustulus [22] Wine lessens thirst and shields us from painful thoughts.
Candidus Wine lessens thirst, but sadness and pain both remain. The days here are not drenched by rain, damp night has no dew, nor can grass grow among the hard stones. Relentless famine, ceaseless toil, and the heat of the air have all wasted my flock. Their diseased breath scarce causes their weakened frames to move. Their haunch bones stick out, and meager bellies contract their hollow entrails. Here’s a ram that used to attack wolves with his forehead and horns. Now he is weaker than a ewe and more apt to flee than a fearful lamb. All this (but at that time I was carried away too much by my burning desires) a prescient crow foretold by a sure sign. [34] I had scarce stepped from my door when from a rooftop it spoke repeatedly in its cawing of my ill–starred journey and baleful misfortunes. Alas, alas, my flock that used to abound in offspring and milk when you were allowed to pasture in the rich fields of our homeland. While you are looking for grass, you lose more vigor in journeying than you gain in pasturage. From hour to hour we are wretchedly wasting away: the flock oppressed through want, their shepherd through worry. Faustulus [42] Ah, the wealth of that land of ours! its flowery meadows and green fields! its pastures rich and fertile and its soil forever fruitful! Its rivers flow, running here and there, throughout the land; channels flow through fields and gardens! On this side flocks, on that side rich earth. Under the sign of Cancer the fields are green, hedges woven of pliant branches support their burden of fruit, and wild herbs enclosed within the hedgerows diffuse their fragrance: shoots of hyssop, mint, and rosemary; pungent thyme, wild thyme, roses, and fennel’s feathery foliage. On this side grow hazel, walnut, almond, and cornel trees, and wild strawberries are springing from their lowly stems.
Candidus [53] Ah, the sweet shade and soft murmuring of the groves! I remember gathering the delights of these with you in the cool shade close by the turtledove’s sighs and the songs of the whistling swallow. A breeze, rustling among the leaves in the groves, came from the east. Carrying along scattered grains of sand, a stream rippled in its channel. Over there, a large tree had shaped itself in the form of a hollow tortoise shell. With its dense foliage, it drove off the heat, and the ground underneath its shady branches was always cool.
Faustulus [61] You were able to live as a man who enjoyed good fortune then and had been blessed for a long time. But because you had not experienced bad luck to the full, good fortune was unwilling to remain with you. When she comes again (if by chance she ever returns), as vines cling with their twisting tendrils to elm trees and hold them fast in their numerous embraces, just so bind her fast with your hand and, once you have seized her, don’t let her go.
Candidus [68] Whenever I remember the delights of my fathers’ fields, I am unable to endure so many troubles with a composed mind. But where are my thoughts bearing me? Struck down by bitter misfortune, why, to torment myself further, am I pondering happier times? May has come. The vine and lowly broom are blooming there. The fields having already bristled with wheat, the pomegranates are red with flowers and the hedges are fragrant with blossoming elder. But the hills here have not yet begun to put on their foliage. If in spring the soil here is languid, what will winter’s cold or the summer solstice bring, seasons when the earth is white with icy hoarfrost or the sky glows with consuming heat? Yet here there are herds with sleek coats and necks unmarked by the yoke, cattle whose foreheads are lofty with twin horns and whose breasts ripple with muscle. If they didn’t graze on good fodder, their backs would not be heavy with so much fat.
Faustulus [83] These cattle, their heads raised high off the ground, devour everything: first the grass, then, their mouths uplifted, the leaves and tops of the tender trees. And this peace–loving herd here, who crop only the grasses growing on the ground, is left to fast in barren fields.
Candidus But why speak more of such things? For all living creatures the condition is the same: the larger ones always harm the smaller ones. Lambs are the wolf’s prey, gentle doves are the eagle’s booty. In the sea the dolphin hunts the harmless fishes. And how does this come about? (Indeed, this seems a monstrous thing.) If you viewed this place at a distance from some high cliff, you might call it rich land thickly arrayed with grass. But the nearer you approach it, the baser everything becomes.
Faustulus [96] Rome is among men what the owl is among birds. Caught in birdlime, a bird dies. And if any are able to evade her snares, stupified they flee and shun the dangers they know by experience.
Candidus But look! over there a serpent is making its winding way through the dust and in its thirst smites the air with its outstretched tongue.
Faustulus [101] Candidus, keep the warnings I am giving you, holding them close within your thoughts. When you walk among brambles, protect your eyes with a hat: for the briars stretch forth pitilessly towards your eyes. Don’t put down your sheephook; and remember to arm your pockets with many stones lest some new enemy suddenly take you by surprise. Put boots on your feet: thorn hedges filled with serpents bring chill death by their secret wound, and now the heat of the long days makes their venom keen. A thousand wolves and as many foxes dwell in those valleys there. Not only within the shadows but in broad daylight they roam about and prepare their ambushes. And (what’s wondrous to tell) they transform themselves into the shapes of men and take on human features. But let me speak of dangers far graver than these. I myself have often seen men (so violent is this region) often assume the shape and ways of a wolf and rage among their own flocks, drenching themselves with the slaughter of their sheep. Their neighbors laugh at what is done, neither trembling at the crime nor preventing such bold acts. [117] Often dogs are transformed by so great a rage that they better even the wolves in slaughter, and those who were guardians take on a hostile intent and kill their own flocks in the sheepfold. Moreover, the heat of the year’s pestilential season often strikes, and the entire flock is laid low, sickening here and there throughout the fields. The lamb, while it bleats near the udders of its dead mother, is dying, the bull perishes under its hard burden, and the calf groans, dying on the bare earth. Nor is there a limit to the disease nor an antidote against the poison. A house receives death from its neighbor, and infected sheepfolds spread the infection.
Candidus [130] Alas, whither has this madness drawn me headlong in my wretchedness? Grave madness it is to trust deceptive rumors. I had heard about Romulus’ hills, the Tiber, and the roofs of Rome, about the gilded beams, columns of solid bronze, and lifelike faces carved from foreign marble, and my mind burned with zeal to see and lead my life among things excellent in so many ways. [137] Therefore, having reckoned the site to be a peaceful one for the sheep, I drew near with part of my flock. In my madness over mountain ridges I bore my tents and all my household goods along with the tools of my shepherd’s trade. But now I am denied pastures I hoped for, and all around are the dangers you have described to me. To my huts of old am I forced to return, to confess that my venture arose from bad counsel, and once again in the heat and among the rocks in the mountains must I endure a life of hard toil. Alas, unfortunate flock! Oh, shepherd borne hither by an unlucky star! More excellent far were it not to have known of this land; better to have passed my days securely in my father’s house; better to have rested from toil within peaceful caves; and on the banks of the Po or in the Adige’s fields or where the Mincio glides among green plains and luxuriant pasturelands, or where the Adda floats along in its glassy course, better far were it to have kept my mind on attending to my flock and my own well–being.
Faustulus [153] Your credulity deceives you and mine deceives me from hour to hour. I myself have seen men who used to dwell on fortune’s peak fall when they sought things of praise and never rise from their troubles—experience has made these men cautious. They investigate and seek out unpraised pasturelands: for those things that are better are wanting in praise. There were cities that preserve a distinguished reputation. Thus Luna and old Hadria had famous names, for Tityrus quite often used to praise those cities in his songs, and you too even now are able to remember them. But beyond their names nothing remains of them. Only my homeland’s glory is less; in reality, it is a better place than they are. Rome has the honor of immortal fame, but her former usefulness has long since passed away. [166] Those very springs by which the ancient pastures used to be moistened now lack water; the Tiber does not irrigate the fields; clouds pour down none of their rain; the flow of the rainwater has been diverted, and the parched earth groans, its grasses burnt dry. Time has worn down the old aqueducts, and the arches have been reduced to fragments by the long lapse of time. Hence, you goats, get you hence. Here reign lean famine and dull poverty!
spacer[173] And yet here (for such is the rumor, and I have seen him myself) there is present a shepherd to help us, a shpeherd who takes his name from a certain bird, a man rich in woolbearing flocks, most rich in land, a man who might overcome in song the bards of old and even Orpheus—Orpheus who drew the trees and rocks when he sang. This man exceeds other Latians in every virtue as much as the Po exceeds the Tiber or a goose a duck, the pliant willow the rush, the rose the thorn, or the poplar seaweed in the ocean. I think this man to be like him in whose honor Tityrus once long ago caused an altar to smoke twice six days. [184] This guardian of the flock is more vigliant than Argus himself, more skilled not only than Daphnis but him who is said once to have pastured Admetus’ cattle in the fields of Thessaly; worthy to watch over the countless sheep for that master from Jerusalem and worthy to succeed that father, great of spirit, who, forsaking his nets, was shepherd of the Assyrian flock. This man has the power to protect the flock, dispel sickness, moisten the ground, bestow pasturelands, release springs, appease Jupiter, and keep away thieves and wolves. If he smiles with favor, stay. But if he denies his favor, drive forth your flock, Candidus, and seek greener pastures.]

An Eclogue by Baptista Mantuanus, Carmelite, dedicated to that most celebrated man of regal magnanimity, my Lord Bernardo Bembo, Venetian orator to Pope Innocent VIII.

Candidus is Mantuan, the author. Batrachus defends the side of those striving to adhere to the purity of their ancient way of life. Myrmix, on the other hand, defends those living under a mitigated rule. Bembus is their judge.

spacerCandidus The greatest discord, Bembus, now stirs shepherds who used as pasture Jerusalem’s hills and the fertile shores of joyful Phoenicia, shepherds who used to dwell in the fields of Galilee. On one side Batrachus, on the other side Myrmix say they stand ready to contend briefly against each other for your judgment, unless you refuse to hear them or greater business recalls you. You have the skill to reconcile us. You know how to lay quarrels to rest. Also, they say that you have drunk of Pierian waters and have seen those goddesses who watch over the sacred fount, Eurotas’ plains, and Phocian fields. It is said that you have crowned your locks with laurel and have borne away Apollo’s gifts: his tuneful citharas and ivory plectra.
spacerBembus [13] Speak, since we are led to our warm fires by the winter’s days, a time when the weather forbids the flock to roam the fields and the north wind rages with its keen breath, when the ground freezes solid, when icicles hang thick from the roof and the streams’ icy waters flow sluggishly. Leisure is condemned when it has no tasks to perform.
spacerMyrmix We shepherds, a hapless race, range about in the heat of summer, anxious for our flocks. But when chilly rain keeps us among the sheepfolds, then quarrels and disputes arise. Batrachus [22] Those who dare to change the old ways and who live at their own discretion under no rules—those, I confess, are the men who are causing this brawling and these wars within our own house.
spacerBembus So you are quarreling about the long–established rite, the customs of your forefathers? Tell me, Batrachus, about them and their ways. And tell me, why you have entered our part of the world? Your ground is fertile (is it not?) and watered by its own marshlands? Aren’t laurel trees there? and rivers sprung from ice–cold springs?
spacerBatrachus [30] Bembus, hear in brief of our race and its beginnings. Helius [i.e., Elijah] first begat us—Helius, I say, who after he had filled the countryside with our forefathers’ sheepfolds is said to have been borne up into the sky in a fiery chariot. He was the first to watch over the sheep. He bequeathed to us the art that enables us to care for our flocks and know which pasturage is harmful. He gave us the signs to discern lurking storms and winds and to foresee wholesome and pestilent times. On the peak of Mount Carmel, a fount pours forth its glassy waters. Now they flow towards the south, but before (the old channel can still be seen) they flowed towards the east. These men have made other watercourses and have abandoned the previous ones.
spacerMyrmix [42] What is it to you if the stream runs in a new course or an old one, so long as it flows through the fields with more plentiful waters? And why complain about the direction? The sun’s course is through the south. Better is the vine that looks to the south, better the grape gathered from Libyan vines.
spacerBatrachus You are a shepherd, and yet, having rashly abandoned the flock’s care, you speak of the vine as if the same rules governed the flocks and vineyards. About the distinctions of waters and grasses you are pitifully ignorant. You scorn the precepts of our forefathers and want to maintain your deviation by evasions such as these. [52] But Bembus, I must talk to you. While we lived together and shared the flock—alas! how much disgrace, how many vexations the sheep endured! I wasn’t permitted to dip my flock in the river or (as is our custom) to shear off their fleece at the appointed times. Thorn hedges stripped the sheep and brambles cut their bare backs. Their coats were rough with scab, their bodies’ moisture was dried up by sickness, sores crept throughout their frames. Having pondered so many losses and enduring them with great difficulty, we came to that fount. My task it was to explore the stream from its highest reaches. Meanwhile you, prudent Myrmix, were hunting birds’ nests or a small gazelle to give to your Asila. [65] Tumbling down from a high cliff, the stream’s channel had made a pool. On the encircling banks a woodland shaded the waters, and the aged branches of an ancient forest kept off the sun with their leafy covering. A thousand kinds of venomous things I saw in that watery abyss, a thousand sorts of creatures on the shady margins along its banks, a thousand things that wound sinuously towards the densely wooded parts of the forest. I was struck with terror, and running back to the sheepfold I began to turn over the straw with my three–pronged pitchfork. [74] And, lo! a serpent raised its head, hissed with its menacing tongue, and swelled open its jaws. A scorpion stretched out its spiteful claws. A big–bellied toad advanced towards me, and a viper rustled, moving through the straw. “Oh place,” said I, “harmful not only to the flocks but to the shepherds themselves!” Directly, having divided my flock from those flocks, I departed in sadness to seek out better pastures. And through the fount’s old channel I led new streams into rising fields where Aurora first unfurls her colors and towards the golden sunrises of ascending Phoebus. Here my sheep are fertile in fleece, and rich is the pasturage. Here the waters are without taint, the sweet springs without fault. [86] In this place our forefathers dwelt in their youth. The traces of their ancient cells still remain: the well, the decayed logs driven in the ground seven feet apart, the hearth, the torn–up plot surrounded by a hedge. Myrmix Frivolous men are wont to busy themselves with newfangled things. Surely it is for this reason that you have sought out new pastures, invented unheard–of streams, and want to be thought our new founder.
spacerBatrachus This newness, Myrmix, is a restored antiquity which your “truth” and the well–known sloth of your fellows have corrupted. If then a man is raising buildings that are falling down and has tamed unfruitful fields, judge you that he should be condemned? We aren’t planting a second tree; rather, a healthy slip is being engrafted on the trunk of the old one, wood dormant before is becoming productive again under our care.
spacerMyrmix [100] Though the grass might be made luxuriant for your flock and the waters be cleansed, nonetheless many lambs have perished with their mothers. Wolves and birds gorged with prey remember them well.
spacerBatrachus ’Tis true—of those sheep who consider your fearful pestilence! Even from afar it harms those who think about it. For this reason I am always minded to depart further and further from you, to ascend that mountain itself, and to restrict the way and course [of your hatred?] so that you might lead your wasted flock back into better pasturelands.
spacerMyrmix [109] You describe many things—known to you alone—about my flock. Why couldn’t I, who pasture anyone’s flock, look after these things? Is my house known only to you?
spacerBatrachus Since Ethiopians are all soiled by blackness, that color is thought no blemish. It is the same among all of them, whether one visage condemns itself or another. Shepherd and sheep have the same impurity, the same scab, the same skin color.
spacerBembus Cease! Now I understand your quarrel well enough. Moreover, the day is ending. Let my judgment close up your dispute. Myrmix Batrachus, you provoke me so often with your bold talk! Bembus [120] Cease! ’Tis now enough! Listen to me more patiently. First of all, walk in the footsteps of your forefathers and keep up the old ways: the renowned pasturelands and springs of your ancestors; their cheese richer than these and the wool of their sheep, wool surpassing silken fleece. They always had snow–white milk (neither snow nor heat confined it from coming); their cups always foamed with frothy cream; they always had new offspring and pails filled with milk under the udders of their ewes. Watchful care, skilled diligence, and, more truly, worship of the gods (no matter how little it is)—these things can make a mighty defense of our sheep. [l30] More often than we do, men of old used to invoke the gods in prayer and perform the sacred mysteries with larger offerings than ours. As a result, their whole flock was productive of offspring; their earth, covered with lush grass, did no harm; and in all aspects their founts were secure. Wherefore, if perchance you wish to submit your quarrels and longstanding battles to my judgment, then first of all abide by the laws. Call back flocks wandering among the valleys and rocks, among the haunts of wild beasts. Build your huts again in the fields of old.]