ODES - IV.7 ALL THE SNOWS HAVE FLED ...
Horace (Q. Horatius Flaccus) trans. James Clerk Maxwell


Diffugere nives, redeunt iam gramina campis
.......arboribusque comae;
mutat terra vices et decrescentia ripas
.......flumina praetereunt;

Gratia cum Nymphis geminisque sororibus audet
.......ducere nuda choros.
Inmortalia ne speres, monet annus et almum
.......quae rapit hora diem:

frigora mitescunt Zephyris, ver proterit aestas,
.......interitura simul
pomifer autumnus fruges effuderit, et mox
.......bruma recurrit iners.

Damna tamen celeres reparant caelestia lunae:
.......nos ubi decidimus
quo pius Aeneas, quo Tullus dives et Ancus,
.......pulvis et umbra sumus.

Quis scit an adiciant hodiernae crastina summae
.......tempora di superi?
Cuncta manus avidas fugient heredis, amico
.......quae dederis animo.

Cum semel occideris et de te splendida Minos
.......fecerit arbitria,
non, Torquate, genus, non te facundia, non te
.......restituet pietas

Infernis neque enim tenebris Diana pudicum
.......liberat Hippolytum,
nec Lethaea valet Theseus abrumpere caro
.......vincula Pirithoo.


All the snows have fled, and grass springs up on the meadows,
.......And there are leaves on the trees;
Earth has changed her looks, and turbulent rivers decreasing,
.......Slowly meander along;

Now, with the naked nymphs and her own twin sisters, Aglaia
.......Gracefully dances in time.
But the Year, and the Hours which hurry along our existence,
.......Solemnly warn us to die.

Zephyr removes the frost, and Summer, soon destined to perish,
.......Treads in the footsteps of Spring,
After the joyous reign of Autumn, abounding in apples,
.......Shivering Winter returns.

Heavenly waste is repaired by the moon in her quick revolutions
.......But when we go to the grave,
Beside the pious Aeneas, and rich old Tullus, and Ancus,
.......We are but dust and a shade.

Who knows if the gods above have determined whether to-morrow
.......We shall be living or dead.
Nothing will come to the greedy hands of your spendthrift successor
.......Which you have given away.

When you are gone to the grave, and Minos, sitting in judgement,
.......Utters your terrible doom,
Neither your rank nor your talents will bring you to life, O Torquatus,
.......Nor will affection avail;

Even the chaste Hippolytus was not released by Diana
.......From the infernal abyss,
Nor could Theseus break from his friend the rewards of presumption
.......Which the stern monarch imposed.

Click here 5 for another translation of this poem.


next
index