The plays of the Senecan corpus will be abbreviated as follows: Ag. — Agamemnon, H. F. — Hercules Furens, Hipp. — Hippolytus, Me. — Medea, Oed. — Oedipus, Phoen. — Phoenissae, Tr. — Troades, Thy. — Thyestes, H. Oet. — Hercules Oetaeus, Oct. — Octavia. I call the play in question Hippolytus rather than Phaedra in imitation of Gager’s practice. To avoid possible confusion, the title of Gager’s Oedipus will never be abbreviated.
2 Cf. Juvenal, Sat. iv.70 - 2:
et tamen illi
Gager had already employed this expression at Meleager 783f.
10 Cf. Ovid, Metamorphoses VIII.159, Daedalus ingenio fabrae celeberrimus artis.
11 Since Homer, there existed a tradition that Crete had once had a hundred cities. Cf. (e.g.) Vergil, Aen. III.106, Ovid, Heroides X.67, and Metamorphoses IX.666.
14ff. As Binns and Wills (p. 184) noticed, this line shows that women were present at the dramatic performances. Cf. the initial note on Ulysses Redux, Act III.
26 Binns and Wills noted the echo of Seneca, Hipp. 461, truculentus et silvester ac vitae inscius.
27 Cf. H. F. 643, debitas poenas dabit. Cf. also Ulysses Redux 1182f.:
quo meritas proci
32f. For this use of the word grex to designate a company of performers cf. the note on Ulysses Redux 2037. For a similar request cf. (e. g.) Plautus, Casina 21f.:
vos omnes opere magno esse oratos volo,
benigne ut operam detis ad nostrum gregem.
Gager’s lines are appropriated as the final two lines of the prologue to Robert Burton’s Philosophaster (acted 1617).
34f. The Senecan model for this dialogue is that between the Ghost of Tantalus and the Fury at the beginning of the Thyestes. We may assume that Cupid is presently on earth as he makes his way towards heaven. The alternative, thinking that this prologue is set in heaven, is improbable (would he encounter Megaera there?) and would entail the introduction of a change of setting.
37 Cf. Hipp. 244, Pirithoi comes.
38ff. Pirithous had descended to the Underworld with Theseus and attempted to rape Proserpina. When he was trapped in the Underworld, his friend stood by him.
47f. For cur tam diu scelere haec vacat / domus nefando? cf. Meleager 101, quam diu est domus innocens?, and the note ad loc. For tam diu est Phaedra innocens? Binns and Wills compared Thy. 280f.:
tam diu cur innocens
53 Binns and Wills noted the echo of Thy. 95, stabo et arcebo scelus. Gager had already employed the phrase at Dido 575.
58 For atram…Styga cf. Hipp. 477.
67 Cf. Meleager 1498f.:
tanta permissa est tibi
in me tyrannis?
68f. Cf. Meleager 334, (sc. Amor) qui maria, terras, cumque Styge caelum domat?
72 Cf. Oct. 808 (of Cupid), flammis vestros obruet ignes.
73 This line acquires a certain proleptic irony in view of Hipp. 1156 (spoken by Theseus to Phaedra), quis te dolore percitam instigat furor?
80 Cf. Hipp. 101, crescit malum.
81f. Binns and Wills noted the echo of Hipp. 720f.:
regeramus ipsi crimen atque ultro impiam
Venerem arguamus: scelere velandum est scelus.
84f. Cf. Oct. 644, quid tegere cesso Tartaro vultus meos(?).
Scena prima The words scena prima represent an interesting deviation from the normal habit of academic drama, in which any new grouping of speaking parts counts as a new scene although there is no discontinuity in time or place. Gager himself adhered to this norm in the Dido, and it is possible that he did so in the manuscript versions of Meleager and Ulysses Redux, but that these indications were suppressed in the printed versions of the plays. Perhaps, therefore, the words scena prima here simply represent a case where the printer forgot to eliminate the indication. The alternative view is that Gager reckoned his entire contribution to the second act of Seneca’s play as a single scene, in the manner of a vernacular play, with the part of the enlarged act written by Seneca, set in a different location, as the second scene of the act.
86 Binns and Wills noted the echo of Horace, Epodes, II.1:
beatus ille qui procul negotiis
ut prisca gens mortalium
paterna rura bobus exercet suis.
93ff. It may be noticed that three of Gager’s plays have to do, to one degree or another, with hunting. Like Hippolytus, Atalanta in the Meleager is a huntress who prizes both chastity and the rustic life, and hunters with dogs are represented in pantomime in Dido. The hunt was a popular pastime in his day, so the repeated introduction of this theme is another means of catering to contemporary tastes, and the present praise of hunting must have been calculated to please those in his audience devoted to this sport.
98 Cf. the note on line 41.
101ff. Cf. Ovid, Heroides iv.169 - 74:
sic tibi secretis agilis dea saltibus adsit,
silvaque perdendas praebeat alta feras.
sic faveant satyri montanaque nomina panes,
et cadat adversa cuspide fossus aper;
sic tibi dent nymphae, quamvis odisse puellas
diceris, arentem quae lavet unda sitim.
108f. Binns and Wills suggested that the play on salutem may echo Ovid, Heroides iv.1f.:
quam nisi tu dederis, caritura est ipsa, salutem
mittit Amazonio Cressa puella viro.
Cf. Ulysses Redux 307f.
115ff. Binns and Wills noted that these lines imitate Ovid, Heroides iv.110 - 24:
praeponit Theseus — nisi si manifesta negamus —
Pirithoum Phaedrae Pirithoumque tibi.
sola nec haec ad nos iniuria venit ab illo;
in magnis laesi rebus uterque sumus.
ossa mei fratris clava perfracta trinodi
sparsit humi; soror est praeda relicta feris.
prima securigeras inter virtute puellas
te perperit, nati digna vigore parens;
si quaeras, ubi sit — Theseus latus ense peregit,
nec tanto mater pignore tuta fuit.
at ne nupta quidem taedaque accepta iugali —
cur, nisi ne caperes regna paterna nothus?
addidit et fratres ex me tibi, quos tamen omnis
non ego tollendi causa, sed ille fuit.
121f. Theseus had killed Phaedra’s brother, the Minotaur, and abandoned her sister on Naxos.
122f. Hippolytus’ mother was the Amazon Antiope.
129f. This image is possibly suggested by Ovid, Remedium Amoris 729f.:
admonitu refricatur amor, vulnusque novatum
132 Cf. Hipp. 629 (also spoken about Theseus by Hippolytus), illum quidem aequi caelites reducem dabunt.
137ff. Binns and Wills noted that these lines imitate Ovid, Heroides iv.73 - 85:
quemque vocant aliae vultum rigidumque trucemque,
pro rigido Phaedra iudice fortis erat.
sint procul a nobis iuvenes ut femina compti!
fine coli modico forma virilis amat.
te tuus iste rigor positique sine arte capilli
et levis egregio pulvis in ore decet.
sive ferocis equi luctantia colla recurvas,
exiguo flexos miror in orbe pedes;
seu lentum valido torques hastile lacerto,
ora ferox in se versa lacertus habet,
sive tenes lato venabula cornea ferro.
denique nostra iuvat lumina, quidquid agis.
153f. Binns and Wills noted the echo of Ovid, Heroides iv.91f.:
arcus — et arma tuae tibi sunt imitanda Dianae —
si numquam cesses tendere, mollis erit.
157 Cf. Hipp. 684, placui novercae.
160 Cf. H. F. 1337f.:
gratiam meritis refer
161 Cf. Hipp. 633, ac tibi parentis ipse supplebo locum.
165ff. Pandarus’ sophistries designed to legitimize incest run parallel to, but are not the same as, those offered by Phaedra at Ovid, Heroides iv.129 - 36. Rather, the specific arguments are taken from Ovid’s tale of Cinyras and Myrrha (Metamorphoses X.323 - 33):
sed enim damnare negatur
hanc Venerem pietas: coeunt animalia nullo
cetera dilectu, nec habetur turpe iuvencae
ferre patrem tergo, fit equo sua Aelia coniunx,
quasque creavit init pecudes caper, ipsaque, cuius
semine concepta est, ex illo concipit ales.
felices, quibus ista licent! humana malignas
cura dedit leges, et quod natura remittit,
invida iura negant. gentes tamen esse feruntur,
in quibus et nato genetrix et nata parenti
iungitur, et pietas geminato crescit amore.
Although the dramatic situations (and their moral implications) are very different, there is an undeniable resemblance between this debate about the value of chastity and that in Act I of Meleager. Cf. the similar, although scarcely depraved, sophistic appeal to Nature at Meleager 301ff.
165 For mundi parentem cf. Hipp. 466, parens mundi.
173 Cf. Ag. 264, lex alia solio est, alia privato in toro.
186ff. Cf. Meleager 1530ff. Binns and Wills also compared Gager’s poem de Cupidine (CIII):
humana primo fecit in terris deum
libido amorem, armavit et telis manus
alasque et arcus finxit et saevas faces,
Venerisque prolem dixit et claudi dei.
vis caeca mentis et furens animi calor
amor est, iuventae natus ex luxu, otio
nutritus, inter blanda fortunae bona.
quem si fovere desinas victus iacet,
brevique vires sponte restinctae cadunt.
He also compared the opening lines of his poem de Fortuna (CVII):
stultitia primo posuit in caelo deum
fortunam, et error numen affinxit sacrum.
All of these passages take their ultimate inspiration from Seneca, Hipp. 195 - 7 and Ps. - Seneca, Oct. 557 - 65, quoted in the note on Meleager 1525ff.
190ff. Compare the style of a passage from Baptista Mantuan’s Sixth Eclogue quoted in the note on 216f.
197ff. As is shown by lines 212ff. below, the device of the letter is suggested by Ovid’s tale of Byblis and Caunus: cf. Met. IX.454 - 665.
200ff. The speaker-attribution in the text fails to make it clear that Hippolytus is reading the letter for the benefit of the audience, and only indicates this when he breaks off and speaks in his own person.
This letter is written in elegiac couplets. For its beginning, cf. the note on 108f. above.
206f. Binns and Wills notes the echo of Ovid, Heroides v.1 - 2:
perlegis? an coniunx prohibet nova? perlege — non est
ista Mycenaea littera facta manu.
212ff. Cf. Ovid, Met. IX.574 - 9:
vixque manus retinens trepidantis ab ore ministri,
“dum licet, o! vetitae scelerate libidinis auctor,
effuge!” ait “qui, si nostrum tu fata pudorem
non traherent secum, poenas mihi morte dedisses.”
216ff. As Binns and Wills appreciated, no spectator could listen to these words without being reminded of the terrific diatribe against women in Baptista Mantuan’s Sixth Eclogue, since Mantuan’s work was standard fare in English secondary schools. The passage begins (110 - 4 Piepho):
femineum servile genus, crudele, superbum,
lege, modo, ratione caret. confinia recta
neglegit, extremis, gaudet, facit omnia voto
praecipiti, vel lenta iacet vel concita currit;
Mantuan produces a long list of female shortcomings, of which this is a sample (122 - 31):
flet, ridet, sapit, insanit, formidat et audet,
vult, non vult, secumque sibi contraria pugnat
mobilis, inconstans, vaga, garrula, vana, bilinguis,
imperiosa, minax, indignabunda, cruenta,
improba, avara, rapax, querula, invida, credula, mendax,
impatiens, onerosa, bibax, temeraria, mordax,
ambitiosa, levis, maga, lena, superstitiosa,
desidiosa, vorax, ganeae studiosa, palatum
docta, salax, petulans et dedita mollitiei,
dedita blanditiis, curandae dedita formae.
After providing a series of exempla drawn from myth and history, he comes to the conclusion (193 - 5):
si fugiunt aquilam fulicae, si retia cervi,
si agna lupum, si damma canem, muliebria cur non
blandimenta fugis tantum tibi noxia, pastor?
217 Cf. Hippolytus’ similar outburst at Hipp. 687, o scelere vincens omne femineum genus.
223f. Cf. the note on 165 above.
238ff. Cf. Ovid, Metamorphoses I.505 - 7:
sic agna lupum, sic cerva leonem,
sic aquilam penna fugiunt trepidante columbae,
hostes quaeque suos.
For the lamb fleeing the wolf, cf. also Ovid, Fasti II.86 and Epistulae ex Ponto II.vii 11. We shall see that in his political odes Gager repeatedly invokes such imagery.
245ff. As he wrote these lines Gager may have had in mind Mistress Digbye’s depredations against his own family in the matter of his uncle Edward’s inheritance. See the discussion of his attitude towards women in the General Introduction to his plays.
246 For persequitur odio cf. Hipp. 238f.
252 Having escaped Pandarus’ snare, he fears he has fallen into a worse predicament. Gager may have gotten the idea for the image from Horace, Epistles I.xvi 50, cautus enim metuit foveam lupus.
253ff. Binns and Wills noted the imitation of Ovid, Metamorphoses IV.320 - 8 (they could have added that this goes to show that the character of the Naiad was inspired by Ovid’ nymph Salamacis):
puer o dignissime credi
esse deus. seu tu deus es, potes esse Cupido,
sive es mortalis, qui te genuere, beati,
et frater felix, et fortunata profecto,
si qua tibi soror est, et quae dedit ubera nutrix
sed longe cunctis longeque beatior illa,
si qua tibi sponsa est, si quam dignabere taeda.
haec tibi sive aliqua est, mea sit furtiva voluptas,
seu nulla est, ego sim, thalamumque ineamus eundem.
But the fact that Gager offers no equivalent for 327 in this passage demonstrates his intent of representing the Naiad as a genuinely chaste and wholesome creature.
Cf. also lines 173 - 8 of Gager’s translation of Musaeus’ Hero and Leander, where the same passage is imitated:
ter faelix qui te genuit materque beata
qui peperit, faelix venter qui reddidit alvo,
faelices ulnae quae te gestare solebant,
mammae faelices, et quae dedit ubera nutrix.
sed longe cunctis longeque beatior ille
quem fructu sponsae et socii dignabere lecti.
278ff. Cf. Terence, Heaut. 67 - 70:
numquam tam mane egredior neque tam vesperi
domum revortor quin te in fundo conspicer
fodere aut arare aud aliquid ferre. denique
nullum remittis tempus neque te respicis.
283 For peccas honeste mente cf. Phoen. 97.
295ff. Cf. Meleager 391 - 3:
Atalanta, nescis casta quid praestet Venus.
roga parentes, neve fallaris, tuam
si viva, matrem.
302ff. Binns and Wills noted the imitation of Ovid, Heroides IV.17 - 36:
non ego nequitia socialia foedera rumpam;
fama — velim quaeras — crimine nostra vacat.
venit amor gravius, quo serius — urimur intus;
urimur, et caecum pectora vulnus habent.
scilicet ut teneros laedunt iuga prima iuvencos,
frenaque vix patitur de grege captus equus,
sic male vixque subit primos rude pectus amores,
sarcinaque haec animo non sedet apta meo.
ars fit, ubi a teneris crimen condiscitur annis;
quae venit exacto tempore, peius amat.
tu nova servatae carpes libamina famae,
et pariter nostrum fiet uterque nocens.
est aliquid, plenis pomaria carpere ramis,
et tenui primam delegere ungue rosam.
si tamen ille prior, quo me sine crimine gessi,
candor ab insolita labe notandus erat,
at bene successit, digno quod adurimur igni;
peius adulterio turpis adulter obest.
si mihi concedat Iuno fratremque virumque,
Hippolytum videor praepositura Iovi!
But of course the contents of this passage had to be tailored to the new speaker and dramatic situation.
309f. Compare the use rose imagery for virginity at Meleager 355ff.
312 Jupiter was both.
315ff. Binns and Wills compared Phaedra’s production of similar mythological examples at Ovid, Heroides, IV.93 - 100. For the love of Aurora for Cephalus, cf. Ovid, Metamorphoses VII.700 - 13 (and also Ars Amatoria III.83 - 5). For Salmacis’ infatuation with Hermaphroditus, cf. Met. IV.285 - 388, and for Venus’ love of Adonis, cf. ib. X.524ff. and 708ff. Diana had fallen in love with Endymion, who lived on Mt. Latmos.
318 Cf. Met. I.441 (of Apollo), deus arcitenens.
329 Binns and Wills noted the echo of Ovid, Heroides IV.101, nos quoque iam primum turba numeremur in ista.
336 Binns and Wills compared Hipp. 780f:
formosos solitae claudere fontibus.
Was Gager alive to the sexual significance of this statement?
345f. Binns and Wills noted the echo of Vergil, Aen. IV.365 - 7:
nec tibi diva parens, generis nec Dardanus auctor,
perfide, sed duris genuit te cautibus horrens
Caucasus Hyrcanaeque admorunt ubera tigres.
Gager had already imitated this Vergilian passage at Dido 840ff. There is something Dido-like about the conversion of the Naiad’s love into undying hatred, which of course also prefigures Phaedra’s similar transformation, predicted by Cupid in line 78, et turpis atrox desinat in odium calor.
365ff. For a man who was obliged to confess that he had never seen the sea, Gager is rather fond of this type of nautical imagery. Cf. poem LI.23 - 6:
languescunt flatu mihi vela remisso,
extinctaque interim cineres tepuere favilla.
tu, dea, certe afflare potes, sed nec mea tantos
cimba ferat fluctus, nec tantum lintea ventum.
And also poem CLXXI.31 - 4:
sed fallax favor est, qui postquam vela secundo
implevit flatu, littoribusque procul
avexit placide navem, mox languidus idem
deserit in medio carbasa laxa freto.
369ff. Compare the following passage from the Epilogue to Burton’s later Christ Church comedy Philosophaster:
at nos de grege si quid forsan aberravimus —
aliis utcunque, vobis opinor non imposuimus —
voce aut manu si quid erratum fuerit,
date veniam, non histriones sumus.
Roscius, a contemporary of Cicero, was the most famous Roman actor.
375f. For the sentiment, cf. Plautus, Casina 1015, nunc vos aequomst manibus meritis meritam mercedem dare.
379f Binns and Wills noted the echo of Horace, Odes III.xxvi, 3f.:
nunc arma defunctumque bello
barbiton hic paries habebit.
380 Binns and Wills noted the echo of Horace, Epistles I.i.8 - 10:
“solve senescentem mature sanus equum, ne
peccet ad extremum ridendus et ilia ducat.”
nunc itaque et versus et cetera ludicra pono.
387 - 9 These lines read like an ironic self-parody of the final chorus of the Meleager (1860 - 5):
reges, timete numina,
cavete divos temnere.
maiora nunquam caelites
exempla dii mortalibus
dedere nobis, quam graves
paenae superbis imminent.
391 Momus, the Greek god of captiousness, figures repeatedly in the dialogues of Lucian: he an interlocutor in Jupiter Tragoedus and Deorum Concilium, and is mentioned in several others.
395ff. Despite the differences of names and details, evidently Gager based these lines on Plutarch, Life of Cato xii.5, 7ff.:
Ποστούμιον γοῦν Ἀλβῖνον ἱστορίαν Ἑλληνιστὶ γράψαντα καὶ συγγνώμην αἰτούμενον ἐπέσκωψεν, εἰπὼν δοτέον εἶναι τὴν συγγνώμην, εἰ τῶν Ἀμφικτυόνων ψηφισαμένων ἀναγκασθεὶς ὑπέμεινε τὸ ἔργον. θαυμάσαι δέ φησι τοὺς Ἀθηναίους τὸ τάχος αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν ὀξύτητα τῆς φράσεως· ἃ γὰρ αὐτὸς ἐξέφερε βραχέως, τὸν ἑρμηνέα μακρῶς καὶ διὰ πολλῶν ἀπαγγέλλειν· τὸ δ’ ὅλον οἴεσθαι τὰ ῥήματα τοῖς μὲν Ἕλλησιν ἀπὸ χειλῶν, τοῖς δὲ Ῥωμαίοις ἀπὸ καρδίας φέρεσθαι.
398 The speaker of this line is Cato, who rather disingenuously used to feign ignorance of all things Greek, and scarcely Albinus.
402f. He quotes lines 369f. of the Epilogue.
409 Cf. H. F. 1266, unius a te criminis veniam pete.
413 Cf. Horace, Ars Poetica 380, indoctusque pilae discive trochive quiescit.
415 In view of Gager’s repeated introductions of Latin translations of English proverbs in Ulysses Redux, it is perhaps possible that this line is suggested by some such proverb as “let the cobbler stick to his last.”
425f. Oxford Arts students were required to study in Grammar, Logic, Rhetoric, Mathematics (including Arithmetic, Music, Geometry, and Astronomy), Natural Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, and Metaphysics: Momus is therefore accusing Gager of wishing to add Acting as an eighth element in the curriculum.
432 Cf. Terence, Eunuchus 236, video sentum squalidum aegrum, pannis annisque obsitum (also imitated at Ulysses Redux 1004f., to which Momus may be alluding here).
436 Seneca haled from Corduba (Cordova) in Spain.
442 These words echo the second line of the Prologue written for the performance of Rivales two nights previously. See the note ad loc.
452f. Gager got the conceit from Catullus, xcv.7f.:
at Volusi annales Paduam morientur ad ipsam
et laxas scombris saepe dabunt tunicas.
457ff. In other words, why was Elizabeth’s name dragged into the Epilogue as a facile applause-getting device?
465f. Momus maliciously misquotes the final line of the Prologue to Ulysses Redux, qui dulce vestrum commodo praefert suo.
472ff. Cf. Horace, Ars Poetica 374 - 8:
ut gratas inter mensas symphonia discors
et crassum unguentum et Sardo cum melle papaver
offendunt, poterat duci quia cena sine istis:
sic animis natum inventumque poema iuvandis,
si paulum summo decessit, vergit ad imum.
si paulum summo decessit, vergit ad imum.
482ff. The reference to the blocked door refers to the fact that the dining hall was temporarily put out of business, so that the inmates of Christ Church were obliged to take their meals elsewhere. We do have evidence for high spirits occasionally getting out of hand, complete with window-breaking and rioting, in connection with other University dramatic productions, but there seems no reason for thinking that is a specific, rather than a general, allusion.
490ff. The physical description of Momus bears a generic resemblance to the apparation of another carping critic, which had appeared to a much more youthful Gager as he was pondering what to write about his friend George Peele (poem LXXIX.5f.):
hoc scio quisquis erat mire fuit is pede curtus,
ore niger, luscus lumine, crine ruber.
And this in turn is based on Martial’s description of the captive critic Zoilus (XII.liv):
crine ruber, niger ore, brevis pede, lumine laesus,
rem magnam praestas, Zoile, si bonus es.
This probably excludes the possibility that the present passage is intended as an unflattering portrait of Dr. John Rainolds; also, this description does not well agree with the very striking portrait owned by Corpus Christi College, for which cf. James McConica (ed.), The Collegiate University, (Oxford, 1986), Plate XVIa.
495 Cf. Horace, Odes IV.iv 51f.:
sectamur ultro quos opimus
fallere et effugere est triumphus.
498f. In a sense, Horace, Ars Poetica 80 - 2 are comparable:
hunc socci cepere pedem grandesque cothurni,
alternis aptum sermonibus et popularis
vincentem strepitus et natum rebus agendis.
500ff. For the story, cf. Lucian, Hermotimus xx, 22ff.:
ὁ γοῦν Μῶμος ἀκήκοας οἶμαι ἅτινα ᾐτιάσατο τοῦ Ἡφαίστου· εἰ δὲ μή, ἀλλὰ νῦν ἄκουε. φησὶ γὰρ ὁ μῦθος ἐρίσαι Ἀθηνᾶν καὶ Ποσειδῶνα καὶ Ἥφαιστον εὐτεχνίας πέρι, καὶ τὸν μὲν Ποσειδῶ ταῦρον ἀναπλάσαι, τὴν Ἀθηνᾶν δὲ οἰκίαν ἐπινοῆσαι, ὁ Ἥφαιστος δὲ ἄνθρωπον ἄρα συνεστήσατο, καὶ ἐπείπερ ἐπὶ τὸν Μῶμον ἧκον ὅνπερ δικαστὴν προείλοντο, θεασάμενος ἐκεῖνος ἑκάστου τὸ ἔργον, τῶν μὲν ἄλλων ἅτινα ᾐτιάσατο περιττὸν ἂν εἴη λέγειν, ἐπὶ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου δὲ τοῦτο ἐμέμψατο καὶ τὸν ἀρχιτέκτονα ἐπέπληξε τὸν Ἥφαιστον διότι μὴ καὶ θυρίδας ἐποίησεν αὐτῷ κατὰ τὸ στέρνον, ὡς ἀναπετασθεισῶν γνώριμα γίγνεσθαι ἅπασιν ἃ βούλεται καὶ ἐπινοεῖ καὶ εἰ ψεύδεται ἢ ἀληθεύει. ἐκεῖνος μὲν οὖν ἅτε ἀμβλυώττων οὕτω περὶ τῶν ἀνθρώπων διενοεῖτο, σὺ δὲ ὑπὲρ τὸν Λυγκέα ἡμῖν δέδορκας καὶ ὁρᾷς τὰ ἔνδον ὡς ἔοικε διὰ τοῦ στέρνου καὶ ἀνέῳκταί σοι τὰ πάντα, ὡς εἰδέναι μὴ μόνον ἃ βούλεται καὶ ἃ γιγνώσκει ἕκαστος ἀλλὰ καὶ πότερος ἀμείνων ἢ χείρων.
509 He is thinking of Neptune, who created a bull sent out of the sea against Theseus.
512 He means Nature: cf. 165f. and 223f. above.
516 This is the parentage of Momus given by Lucian, Deorum Concilium xiv,10.
520 One might either think Momus is employing arguments casually picked up on street-corners (so Tucker Brooke in his unpublished translation) or even, just conceivably, that his arguments are being compared to horse turds. At least in his letter to Dr. John Rainolds Gager sought to mollify his opponent by putting a light interpretation on these words: “thay weare arrepta ex triviis, that is thay weare common and tryviall speeches. and therfor I would you had not translated arrepta ex triviis, rascall reproaches. the wordes in Latyn naturaly sownde not so hardely.”
525f. The evidently garbled sidenote does not make it clear that this is an allusion to a passage in Book II of Ulpian’s Digest discussing Roman laws against actors. Rainolds based part of his case on his precedent: cf. Th’Overthrow pp. 4 - 8 and 61 - 77.
534ff. An ancestor of Alexander the Great. Rainolds (Th’Overthrow p.11) tells the story more fully:
One of the Macedonians, whose king Amnyntas entertaining Persian ambassadors, & having at their request broght noble wemen to the banket, when the embassadours dalying with them did touch their brests, & offered some to kisse them; the kings sonne, misliking their lascivious actions, desired them to give the wemen leave to go forth, pretending they should returne neater, & so by his direction there came in their steed yong men, attired like them, with daggers vnder their garmentes, who slew the embassadours as soone as they offered to touch them.
The story comes from Herodotus, V.17 - 19.
540 The profligate Clodius, a contemporary of Cicero, created a scandal by disguising himself as a woman to participate in the rites of the Bona Dea, forbidden to men.
541 Achilles disguised himself as a girl in order to avoid being sent to the war at Troy.
554 A slightly modified version of line 67 above (and cf. the note ad loc.).
570 The force of -que in similibusque is unclear.
576 This alludes to the request for pardon in the first Epilogue (cf. particularly 375 - 7).
610 Cf. Vergil, Eclogue vii.26, invidia rumpantur ut ilia Codro. Cf. also the similar image at poem XX.58f.: