Gaius Valerius Catulluswas a Latin poet of the late Roman Republic who wrote in the neoteric style of poetry. His surviving works are still read widely, and continue to influence poetry and other forms of art...
The confounding of all right and wrong, in wild fury, has averted from us the gracious favor of the gods.
It is difficult to suddenly give up a long love. Difficile est longum subito deponere amorem
What woman says to fond lover should be written on air or the swift water.
[Lat., Mulier cupido quod dicit amanti,
In vento et rapida scribere oportet aqua.]
We see not our own backs.
The vows that woman makes to her fond lover are only fit to be written on air or on the swiftly passing stream.
I write of youth, of love, and have access by these to sing of cleanly wantonness.
Oh, this age! How tasteless and ill bred it is!
What a woman says to an eager lover, write it on running water, write it on air.
What women say to lovers, you'll agree, One writes on running water or on air.
I hate and I love, and who can tell me why?
I can imagine no greater misfortune for a cultured people than to see in the hands of the rulers not only the civil, but also the religious power.
Stop wishing to merit anyone's gratitude or thinking that anyone can become grateful.
There is nothing more silly than a silly laugh.
To whom do I give my new elegant little book? Cui dono lepidum novum libellum?
My mind's sunk so low, Claudia, because of you, wrecked itself on your account so bad already, that I couldn't like you if you were the best of women, -or stop loving you, no matter what you do.
Away with you, water, destruction of wine!
Brother, hello and good-bye. Frater, ave atque vale
I hate and love. And why, perhaps you’ll ask.
I don’t know: but I feel, and I’m tormented.
There is nothing more foolish than a foolish laugh. Risu inepto res ineptior nulla est
I hate and love. You ask, perhaps, how can that be? I know not, but I feel the agony.
Godlike the man who
sits at her side, who
watches and catches
which (softly) tears me
to tatters: nothing is
left of me, each time
I see her...
My lady's sparrow is dead, the sparrow which was my lady's delight
So a maiden, while she remains untouched, remains dear to her own; but when she has lost her chaste flower with sullied body, she remains neither lovely to boys nor dear to girls.
Nothing is more silly than silly laughter.
Let us live, my Lesbia, and let us love. Vivamus, mea Lesbia, atque amemus
Give up wanting to deserve any thanks from anyone, or thinking anybody can be grateful.
Now Spring restores the balmy heat, now Zephyr's sweet breezes calm the rage of the equinoctial sky.
I hate and I love. Perchance you ask why I do that. I know not, but I feel that I do and I am tortured.
[Lat., Odi et amo. Quare id faciam, fortasse requiris. Nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior.]
Every one has his faults: but we do not see the wallet on our own backs.
For the godly poet must be chaste himself, but there is no need for his verses to be so.
Ah, what is more blessed than to put cares away, when the mind lays by its burden, and tired with labor of far travel we have come to our own home and rest on the couch we longed for? This it is which alone is worth all these toils.
I hate and I love. And if you ask me how, I do not know: I only feel it, and I am torn in two.
Give me a thousand kisses, then a hundred, then a thousand more.
It is difficult to lay aside a confirmed passion.
But you shall not escape my iambics.
Better a sparrow, living or dead, than no birdsong at all.
Who now travels that dark path from whose bourne they say no one returns.
[Lat., Qui nunc it per iter tenebricosum
Illue unde negant redire quemquam.]
There is nothing sillier than a silly laugh