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1 MISSIVES AND MISSILES : CATULLUS AS INVECTIVE POET By BRYAN HENRY SANSBURY A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2011
2 2011 Bryan Henry Sansbury
3 To my parents, without whose love and support I would not be here To my grand parents, who always emphasized th e value of academic achievement To my teachers who nurtured my intellectual curiosity, academic interests, and sense of scholarship throughout my lifetime, making this milestone possible
4 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I thank Dr. Tim Johnson as well as Dr. Mary Anne Eaverly and Dr. Konstantinos Kapparis for their work on this t hesis. I thank all those who ha ve had a hand in producing the ideas presented here Most importantly, I thank God for his continued work in my life.
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ ............. 4 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 6 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 7 The Catullan Corpus ................................ ................................ ................................ ................. 7 Catullus a nd the Tradition of Iambic Invective ................................ ................................ ........ 9 2 CREATING AN INVECTIVE AWARENESS ................................ ................................ ...... 14 Poems of Self Address ................................ ................................ ................................ ........... 14 ................................ ................................ ................................ 21 3 CATULLUS ON SOCIAL CONTRACTS ................................ ................................ ............ 29 4 CATULLUS THE INVECTIVE LOVER ................................ ................................ ............. 36 5 CATULLUS 116 & RETALIATORY RAGE ................................ ................................ ....... 46 6 CONCLUSION ................................ ................................ ................................ ....................... 53 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 54 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 56
6 Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requir ements f or the Degree of Master of Arts MISSIVES AND MISSILES: CATULLUS AS INVECTIVE POET By Bryan Henry Sansbury May 2011 Chair: Tim Johnson Major: Classical Studies This thesis analyzes the ways in which Catullus incorporates invective attacks throughout his corpus. He writes poems of varied length and meter to many different characters in Rome, and wielded his poetry as a weapon to criticize, shame, blame, and threat en his opponents. This for each poem: poems of self address, poems written to his lovers and those who would steal them from him, and poems written in rage against his enemies. Throu ghout each of these sections, the invective tone and modes of attack will be revealed and assessed. discussed as a whole and in specific poems, where pertinent. Ultimately, his continued u se of invective poetry situates Catullus within the iambic tradition, inherited from Archilochus, Hip ponax, and Callimachus.
7 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION The Catullan Corpus his invective attacks are pervasive. This would seem t o situate Catullus within the iambic tradition which is generally associated with mockery 1 Nevertheless, ancient scholars then and modern scholars now still should be classified as a whole 2 This debate is supported by the fact that Catullus writes in many different meters on various topics and characters 3 This further raises questions on the nature of corpus whether it should be defined and arranged according to subject matter, address ee, theme, meter, or another concept 4 Catullus obviously writes in a variety of meters, but his persona of attack is consistent throughout. His aggression marks his relationships with 1 Further discussion of the Iambic tradition will come at the end of this Intro duction, as well as in Chapter 5 2 Quintilian lists Catullus with the iambists at Institutio Oratio X.1.96, while Propertius states his poet ic debt as an elegist to Catullus (along wit h Calvus) at 2.25.4. Wray (2001) 2 17 discusses collection as lyric, according to Veyne (1988), Miller (1994), and Fitzgerald (1995). Veyne and Fitzgerald classify arly defies classification. Miller situates Catullus within this broad scope of lyric, but more finely as an elegist J.K. Newman classifies Catullus as an iambist. Obviously, by my argument, I argue that Catullus should be regarded as an iambist due to hi s consistent persona of attack. 3 Meters in which Catullus wri tes include: hendecasyllabics, d actylic hexameter, elegiac couplets, galliambic, glyconic and pherecratean stanzas, greater asclepiadean, iambic senarius, iambic tetrameter catalectic, iambic tr imeter, limping iambics, priapean, and sapphic strophe. See Garrison (1989) 171 175 for a fuller description of these meters as they appear in the Catullan corpus. 4 ) 6 11 I d o traditional numbering of his poems. See also Skinner (1981), (2003) xxvi xxvii, (2007) 35 50; Butrica (2007) 19 Dettmer (1997), and van Sickle (1980), (1989).
8 several real life personages in Rome 5 As the audience is compelled to identify the causes and results of these attacks against real personages, they are indoctrinated into what we might call poetic perspective because, w hile he is often attacking other people Catullus also in volves himself in his own blame writing T hrough out the poems in which he addresses himself, Catullus re peatedly refers to the act and process of his writing so that t hese poems create an awareness of how he conceptualizes his writing and how he sees it functioning in society. Specifically, t ona can be easily identified with aggressive invective. The consistency of his attacks on various subjects forces his audience to assess actively his identity as a blame poet H ow Catullus writes invective depends on hi s targets and their character. Nevertheless, although his invective poem s vary according to their target, through studying the consistency in these attacks the rea der can determine what Catullus understood the nature and function of his poetry to be I wi Archilochus and Hipponax, in the rest of this introduction. Chapter 2 will discuss how Catullus implicates himself in his own poetry. This will establish how Catullus as n arrator treats himself in his poetry, and the way in which he envisions his invective functioning. Next Chapter 3 will discuss the severity of poems which are addressed to thieves of his property. Chapter 4 will consider his poems which are addressed to his rivals for Lesbia and to Lesbia herself for the pain they cause d him. Finally, Chapter 5 most scurrilous personal assaults specifically against Gellius and Mamurra. Throughout all of these invective poems Catullus continually creates his pe rsona and consciously fashions how it should be read by his audience 5 Real life addressees include: Alfenus (30), Arrius (84), Aurelius (11, 15, 16, 21), Caecilius (18, 35 67), Julius Caesar (57, 93), his friend Calvus (14, 96), Cicero (49), Gaius Cinna (113), 43, et al. ), Flavius (6), Gellius Poplicola (74, 80, 88 91, 116), Mamurra (41, 57, 94), among others.
9 This audience is enticed to identify and side invectives successful in turning his version of these real p ersons into a statement of the social efficacy for his verses. Catullus and the Tradition of Iambic Invective typical of Greek iambic poetry dating back to Archilochus (c. 680 645 BCE) and Hipponax (mid 6 th century) T he term aischrologia is associated with their iambic and contains the idea that, through saying shameful things towards others, the poet is incorpo rating himself into the process of blame and shame 6 poems of self address in which he casts himself as a character, as well as his concep tion of how his poetry functions as an agent of Rumor criticism that is prevalent in the shame centered writing of iambic. 7 As illustrated by the large num ber of meters (see footnote 3) in which Catullus writes, he did not limit his invective attacks to the iambic meters 8 Rather, he preferred to vary his metrical choice widely. Similarly, throughout these varied meters. As evi dence of this, all four of iambus occur in hendecasyllablic verse 9 For example, Catullus uses hendecasyllabi in poem 42 to refer an invective poem against a moechia turpis 6 Aristotle (1336b 3 6). Aristotle cautions against aischrologia except for ritual scurrility, comedy, and iambus, provided that youths are not exposed t o t hese subjects. F or a further discussion of aischrologia and its place within cult worship see Compton (2006) 42 43, 71, 267; Gerbe r (1997) 45 48; Halliwell (2008) 115 ff 7 Poems of self rumor will be discussed more full y in Chapter 2 8 Catullus wrote twelve poems in iambic meters: iambic trimeter (4, 29, 52), iambic tetrameter catalectic (25), choliambic (8, 22, 31, 37, 39, 44, 59, 60). 9 Poems 36, 40, 54, Fragment 3. of iambus did not limit his invective poetry to iambic meters.
10 Archilochus is considered the inventor of iambic and Catullus used his poems of abuse as an inspiration for his own invective attacks 10 Additionally, Catullus relied on Hipponax and Callimachus as his invective models The similarities between Catullus and his Greek mod els do not stop merely at their varied use of meters. 11 Of course, they each used their poetry for the purpose of abuse, but Heyworth also notes passion in friendship and enmity frankness of expression (especially in sexual matters) the impor tance accorded to literary judg 12 Nevertheless, the key similarity that Catullus draws upon as a major resource for his poetry is the ir mode of invective to attack and shame Archilochus himself often abused and shamed persons around him. In seventh century Greece, he attacked the promiscuity of Neobule (fr. 196a West 13 Lycambes wronged Archilochus by breaking his oath and denying Archilochus his daughte r, whom he had promised in marriage Accordingly, The attacks that Archilochus then levels against his opponent are actually attacks describing the promiscuity of his daughters. As an examp le of these attacks, Archilochus depicts Neobule as a prostitute (frr. 206 209 West). 14 Through these attacks, Archilochus presents himself as the victim of the situation while continuously heaping blame upon Lycambes and his family. Because of his violent invectives 10 Pindar viewed Archilochus as the archetypal poet of blame ( test 35). 11 Archilochus: elegiacs, iambic and trochaic meters, epodes; Hipponax: best known for his choliamb; Callimachus: best kn own for epigrams. 12 Heyworth (2001) 130 13 Gerber (1997) 58 69. Archilochus attacked Lycambes for breaking the engagement between contradictory. For discussion of the evidence for this feud, see H.D. Rankin (1977) 47 ff, and C. Carey (1986) 60 67. 14 Gerber (1997) 65 209), the traditional assumption is that these statements of promiscuity and prostitution against the would have leveled against Neobule.
11 against the Lycambids stories were passed down that Lycambes (and perhaps a few members of his family) committed suicide. 15 ersonal enemy, but as a malefactor who 16 Hipponax wrote his iambic poetry in the middle of the sixth century. 17 He was well known 18 Despite their 19 Hipponax did not shy away from the lower levels of society and their interactions including thieves and graphic descriptions of sexual encounter s. 20 In contrast to Archilochus, though, Hipponax seems to have rejected many of the lofty associations which are characteristic Archilochus received his lyre from the Muses themselves, situating his iambos on a high stylistic iambos has him encounter Iambe, the eponym of the genre itself, as an old woman washing her clothes by the sea. 21 Despit e the differences in style and themes of their poetry, both poets identified themselves with iambos Similar to Archilochus, Hipponax has a specific enemy who is the target of his invective poems. The Suda (ii.665.16 Adler) attacks as a result of 15 See Gerber (1997 ) 50 n.31, for the full bibliography on the variances in the suicide of includi Epod 6.13 Ib. 54, 521, Hor. Epist. 1.19.23 31 Also, Catullus inverted this story in his poem 52 discussed in full in Chapter 2 16 Gerber (1997 ) 59 17 Frr. 1 3, 7 Degani for his life and family heritage, attested in the Suda 18 Gerber (1997) 80. 19 Gerber (1997) 82 83 Sappho Hipponax and Archilochus, as the two creators of iambic, were even portrayed as rival lovers of Sappho (fr. 71 PPG), similar to the way Aristophanes posed Aeschylus and Euripides as the two opposing models for tragedy. 20 Frr. 2, 86 Degani. 21 Gerber 1997: 83 test 21, 21a 21d Degani. The Mnesiepes inscription is recorded as test 4 Tarditi.
12 being subjected to publi Athenis, because they made insulting likenesses to him 22 In his invective campaign, Hipponax attacks Bupalus as well as ip with a woman named Arete in graphic detail. Hipponax even levels accusations of incest 23 Both Archilochus and Hipponax direct their invective poetry against individuals who have caused them harm with his frequent use of the pharmakos 24 As an exiled poet, he often portrayed himself as the victim or scapegoat, but also used his poetry to place blame on others, and to fashion them as a pharmakos As eportedly attacked Bupalus and Athenis only after they attacked him; this detail enables us to view the poet as a justified blame poet, as in the case of Archilochus and the oath 25 Compton also notes that Hipponax is acting against fello w artists, as they are rival artists, recalling the in which poets vie for literary supremacy. They employ their poetry as a means for retribut ion, while seeking to inflict punishment on their opponents. 26 Much in the same way that Archilochus and Hipp onax 22 Suda ii.665.16 Adler. Translation by Gerber (1999 ) 344 345 23 Fr. 20 Degani a term of abuse involving a relationship with his own mother. Certainly, this could just be a slang insult and not an exact accusation, but evidence for the accusations continue s elsewhere. At fr. 69.7 8, Hipponax mai ntains this accusation, although it is not sure that fr. 69 refers to Bupalus. Nevertheless, these fragments typify the attacks which Hipponax levels against his opponents. 24 The locus classicus for the pharmakos is 5 10W/26 30Dg; 6Dg. See Compton (2006) 6 2 63 for the texts and translations. Other instances of the pharmakos in the Hipponactean corpus include: 104W/107Dg, 152 153W/146Dg. Hipponax portrays himself as the pharmakos at 37W/46Dg: d cast stones pharmakos pharmakos was a human embodiment of evil who was expelled from the Greek city at moments of crisis and 25 Compton (2006) 66. It is of utmost importance that each author is an attacked victim, who in turn will torture and crucify their opponents through their poetic weapon. 26 On the social implications of Greek iambic writing, obvious implications for the society a s a whole. These social concerns seem to lie close to the
13 establish themselves as the victims of attacks, Catullus positions himself in this genre through his own invective poetry By becoming the pharmakos these authors, Catullus included, succeeded in coopting for themselves a moral authority to critique, attack, and hopefully (in their minds) assassinate their opponents. commun
14 CHAPTER 2 CREATING AN INVECTIV E AWARENESS criticism 27 which is evident in his poems of self address (8, 46, 52, 76, and 51) 28 Catullus accentuates self criticism by creating and yet eliminating a dissonance between the poet as narrator and the character Catullus addresses Catullus as narrator is blaming himself, casting himself as one of the real persons whom he attack s. The difference between his other invective poem s and the poems of self address is that through these attacks Catullus manages to create sympathy for himself. Additionally, and most importantly, Catullus sets himself up as a moral arbiter for his Roman a udience, since he has shown that he will even point a critical eye at himself 29 Poems of Self Address In the traditional numbering of his poems, 30 Catullus first uses self address in poem 8 which he writes in limping iambics and opens with the self addres s Miser Catulle is so wretched that m iser has become his epithet. Catullus, as narrator, continues on to order his version of the details concerning how Catullus, despite his unending love and attempts to provide pleasure, has become merely an object that his Lesbia no longer wishes to be with (6 9). 27 This is typical in the iambic genre, as discussed in the Introduction. 28 Catullus addresses himself in the final stanza of 51, but this poem as a whole is better suited to be discussed as it pertains to Lesbia and their relationship in C hapter 4 A poem i n which Catullus does not explicitly address anyone but it is assumed that the poet narrator is addressing himself is 73, which will be discussed within this chapter as well. 29 In this way, Catullus manages to indoctrinate his readers into what Christopher Nappa calls the and yet to avail himself of being an object of scorn. However, Critias 88 B 44 D. K. ap. Aelian. V.H. proceeds to discuss how the many these details, including his slave mother and his adultery. Yet, Critias misses the point in that Archilochus is presenting himself as part of the society which he will criticize, and at the same time as an outsider and a victim whose only recourse is to attack his enemies. 30 See footnote 4 above for discussion of the arrangement of the Catullan corpus.
15 Catullus orders himself to cease his love and show of unwanted affections, to become just as hard and cold in his heart as his former lover and to part ways with her, proclaiming Vale (12). However, after t his bold proclamation to rid himself of their affair, final faltering lines reveal for its audience that Catullus is unable to wrest himself from his unrequited love. scelesta, vae te! quae tibi manet vita? quis nunc te adibit? cui videberis bella? quem nunc amabis? cuius esse diceris? quem basiabis? cui labella mordebis? at tu, Catulle, destinatus obdura! ( Catullus 8.15 19 ) Wicked woman, Woe to you! What life remains for you? / To whom now will you run? To whom will you seem beautiful? / Whom now will you love? Whose will you be said to be? / Whom will you kiss? Whose lips will you nibble upon? / But you, Catullus, havi ng been made firm, hold on! 31 In just these five lines, Catullus loses his focus on his anger as he reminds himself of all their lascivious times. For his audience, Catullus holds up the memory of their kisses and creates a daydream of her nibbling on his lips again. Through t his ironic reverie Catullus the narrator wants to show his audience how The final self exhortation at line 19 comes as a last ditch effort to remind himself of the opening description of fallen too far into reminiscing about their affair W ith this ending of his poem, Catullus makes it impossible for the audience to differentiate between any ascribed persona, complete with descriptions of their lustful lip bit i ng, and the real life Catullus since his poem models for his audience this 31 Lines 15 19. All translations are my own unless otherwise noted.
16 and character, Catullus is able to dictate what his audience will read, and succeeds here in creating empathy for himself through this poem of self address and self bemoaning. Catullus again uses self address i n Carmen 46, written in hendecasyllables. No invective tone is evident within this poem itself Catullus anticipates leaving Bithynia and the rich fields of sweltering Nicaea for the splendid cities of Asia Minor on his return trip home. Rather than emphas ize his horrible time serving in Bithynia, he prefers to describe his joyous expectations for leaving this place. Nevertheless, his audience would be familiar with his other poems which describe his hate for this assignment. Particular among these is Carme n 10, a hendecasyllabic poem in which he describes an unpleasant encounter with Varus and his ill reputed girlfriend. scortillum (3) became inquisitive about his time spent in Bithynia, specifically hoping that she coul d borrow any slaves that he might have garn ered in his time there (6 8, 14 16). Catullus replies that nobody made any profits there, especially because of their irrumator (12) of a praetor (13) 32 and her insistence on trying to borrow porters from him H is rage shines through in the final lines : But you are a badly tasteless and annoying woman, because of whom it is not allowed to be off guard (33 34 : sed tu insulsa male et molesta vivis, / per quam non licet esse neglegentem 33 Although Carmen 46 prefers to focus on leaving Bithynia and is thus not rife with invective and rage, a learned reader of Catullus would rememb er how horrible and wasteful his em ployment in Bithynia was Open rage returns in self address and invective of Carmen 52, an angry epigram aimed against Nonius and Vatinius: 32 Gaius Memmius, described in a poor light here. See also 28.10. 33
17 Quid est, Catulle? quid moraris emori? sell a in curuli struma Nonius sedet; per consulatum peierat Vatinius: quid est, Catulle? quid moraris emori? ( Catullus 52.1 4 ) Nonius si ; / Vatinius swears falsely on his consulship: / This short four line poem, written in iambic trimeter, is opened and closed with the repeated line asking why Catullus has not yet killed himself. The cause of his indignation is the fact tha t undeserving fools such as Nonius and Vatinius are being rewarded with and boasting about their new and even yet unattained offices. Nonius is not easily identifiable with any list of magistrates, but Catullus portrays him together with Vatinius as a man who is unjustly reaping the rewards of his service to Pompey and Caesar. Vatinius, also mentioned in the following hendecasyllabic poem 53 ( in which Catullus praises his friend Calvus for his prosecution of this foul character Vatinius for bribery ) is so bold as to swear on a consulship that he has not yet achieved! 34 angry invective against supporters and friends of the triumvirs. Catullus the narrator even encour ages himself to commit suicide, since their atrocities are so despicable. This is ironic when compared with the iambic tradition which Catullus has inherited from Archilochus and Hipponax. With the threat of his own suicide, Catullus radically inverts the trope inherited from these two models. According to the stories surrounding mockery was so strong that it fo rced Lycambes to commit suicide. Likewise, Hipponax 34 prosecution in 54 BCE In Vatinium became famous as a splendid model for its kind. Nevertheless, Vatinius was successfully defended by Cicero.
18 invective attacks caused Bupalus to end his own life. 35 Whether these suicides of Lycambes and Hipponax are factual or literary products Catullus fully inverts this with his suggestion that he himself should commit suicide instead of the targets of his own abuse This does not mean that Catullus sees no efficacy in his own poetry. Rather, Catullus once again is merely positioning himself as the victim in this situation. Although Nonius and Vatinius have not directly attacked Catullus, he inverts the iambic traditi on to become the recipient of what should be their punishment. By inserting himself as the victim, Catullus creates the potential and even necessity for himself to write this poem decrying their abuses. Carmen 76 returns to the Lesbia affair, as Catullus a gain encourages himself to abandon the hope that she will at some point return his love and unfailing devotion. This theme of useless favors is present throughout his corpus 36 Catullus writes: Siqua recordanti benefacta priora voluptas est ho mini, cum se cogitat esse pium, nec sanctam violasse fidem, nec foedere in ullo divum ad fallendos numine abusum homines, multa parata manent in longa aetate, Catulle, ex hoc ingrato gaudia amore tibi. ( Catullus 76.1 6 ) If there is any pleas ure for a man, recalling previous past deeds, / when he thinks that he is loyal, / and that he has not violated a sacred agreement, nor in any pact / to have abused the divinity of the gods in order to deceive men, / many pleasant 35 See Archilochus, frr. 17 181 for the main thrust of the story, and Horace Epistles 1.19.23 31 to describe the s uicides. The cause of his invective is traditionally handed down as a br oken marriage pact (Gerber 1997) 50 69 For Hipponax, see fr. 8 Degani which describes his feud with Bup alus and fr. 19, 20, 69 Degani s including incest (Gerber 1997) 84 87 36 I will r eturn to this theme in Chapter 4 when discussing the poems addressed to Lesbia, where Catullus describes how she continually takes his loyalty for granted.
19 things remain prepared in a long age, Catullus, / for you in exchange for this unthankful love. Catullus continues after these lines to declare that he has done everything which a lover could possibly say or do, and yet Lesbia has only re warded him with her vileness (7 9). Fitting ly, Catullus writes this poem concerning their relationship in elegiac couplets, as he wants to illustrate to his audience what exactly his love affairs produce for him because Catullus presents himself as the servus amoris and Lesbia as his domina the two primary roles for elegiac poetry. There can be no happy ending for him, and Catullus emphasizes for his readers the painful trek his love affair has forced upon him. As such, Catullus calls himself miser twice at lines 12 and 19, and puns on this word with his wish for the gods to take pity on him with misereri (17). Certainly the repetition of this word evokes poem 8, in which Catullus assigns himself the epithet of Miser Catullus details here just how painful and destruc tive this love has been to him, using the descriptive phrases excrucies (10), morte (18), pestem perniciemque (20), and finally taetrum morbum (25). Certainly, Catullus is hammering hom e for himself as the addressee and his audience the extent to which he has suffered describing his rejection as a dis ease, destruction, and sickness even to the point of death. Finally, he prays to the gods for an end to this foul sickness in exchange for his worship and dutiful piety (26). Despite these wishes to absolve hi mself of any involvement with Lesbia, Catullus readily admits that he is himself responsible for his previous infatuations. As such, this poem is marked by invective aimed at himself for causing himself such distress. In addition to poems in which Catullus explicitly addresses himself, poem 73 is written with Catullus as the implied addressee. I nvective is prevalent throughout this poem as well. It is a short epigram which is markedly similar to the opening sentiments of 76. Catullus opens line 1 with the forceful imperativ e, Desine line 1 ) which then governs both of the infinitives
2 0 velle and putare 37 Catullus emphasizes here that his own decisions and desires have led him astray, and so he now must rectify these mental mistakes by stopping them once and for all The opening couplet orders v. 1). The insistence of de quoquam quicquam emphasizes the impossibility of ever being treated well by anyone The second infinitive continues to v. 2). The following couplet illustrates how everything is wrong and unpleasant, and what is worse, that doing good things for anyone actually becomes harmful 38 Finally, Catullus pi npoints that this poem is intended for himself and is talking about himself, as he writes ut mihi (5). This self sympathy back towards Catullus, who reveals that he has recently been harmed even by the person wh om he considered 39 This final revelation that a close friend has betrayed his loyalty brings into clearer focus the aliquem ( v. 2), since this betrayal comes from someone whom Catullus had trusted Although Catullus is not behaving in a reproachable manner, Catullus the narrator once again directs this invective attack at him since he continues to involve himself with people who can and will treat him poorly. As such, Catullus invokes himself as the cause of his own mis treatment, saying that the only remedy is to stop his inclination to tr ust anybody Throughout these poems of self address, Catullus illustrates for his audience the ways in which he has allowed himself to falter and flail in unpleasant relationships and s ituations. Although much of his attacks are addressed to other characters within these poems, Catullus repeatedly emphasizes the extent to which he is at fault for poor choices and bad situations. From 37 Lines 1 Desine de quoquam quicquam bene velle mereri / aut aliquem fieri posse putare pium 38 Lines 3 Omnia sunt ingrata, nihil fecisse benigne / prodest, immo etiam taedet obestque magis 39 Quam me unum atque amicum habuit
21 this, the audience is able to see the social function of his poems, as Catullus dares to direct his invective, written in multiple meters, at any sort of character, independent of their social status. T his certainly does not exclude Catullus, who is included within his attacks. Through this us e of self criticism for evils which other people have inflicted upon him Catullus both creates sympathy for himself and also establishes himself as a moral judge for his Roman audience. If he can focus this critical poetic perspective on himself without fail, then Catullus establishes himself as a person who has the authority to criticize the faults of those around him. Catullus also shapes his persona as a blame poet by making direct references to his poems and how they should function in society at large For Catullus, his poems are personified agents of Rumor simultaneously serving to deliver his message to the recipient and fashioning his version of their relationship for his audience 40 This is most evident in poems w here Catullus addresses the poem itself as if it is a character Carmen 35, written in hendecasyllabic meter, is the first instance in the corpus of this literary trope. Catullus is writing to his friend Caecilius, asking him to come to Verona 41 However, Catullus issues this invitation in a unique way. Rather than a standard letter in which he addresses Caecilius directly, he addresses this poem to the letter itself, papyre (2). He uses the vocative together with the optative subjunctives velim (2) and di cas (3) to position h is poem letter as a character According to Catullus, the poem itself will actively speak his message. This opening construction sets up a good humored and playful nature for the whole poem, which 40 Poems in which Catullus makes reference to his poems themselves include 36, 40, 78B, 116. Catullus even makes his poems the objects of his address in 35 and 42. An additional reference is made to a certain bad story ( quaedam mala fabula ) in 69. All of these will be shown to illustrate Rumor 41 Poetae tenero, meo sodali, / velim Caecilio, papyre, dicas / Verona veniat 3). Translated:
22 shows just how tener his fellow poet Dindymi dominam line 14) as something worthy of look ing forward to, but he twice jokes with Caecilius about the fact that his poem is unfinished 42 Perhaps Catullus is je alous for the unrelenting adoration in spite of the fact that his poem is incomplete but the overall tone is comic This light and playful tone begins with the opening address to the poem, and is continued with the mock grandiose term cogitationes (5) to describe the conversation between close friends 43 perform two functions: superficially, it invites Caecilius to Verona and more importantly, it presents Caecilius as a poet friend worthy of praise This secondary function illustrates how Catullus fashions his characters and relationships fo r his audience Catullus uses this device again in Carmen 42 when he summons his hendecasyllabi (1) to his aid 44 After his opening address and call to all his poems, he charges them to force the moech a turpis pugillaria line 5). When asked by his poems who she is 45 Catullus throws abuse on her with turpe and mimice ac moleste (8). Beyond this, he says that when she smiles and laughs, she looks like a dog 46 Catullus even exhorts his poems to shout out to the mistress, calling her a moecha putida when they are 42 Incohatam (13) and incohat a (18). 43 This comedic tone continues with the phrase viam vorabit (7), asking Caecilius to eat up the illum deperit (12), describing how Sapphica puella musa doctior lines 16 17. 44 The meter of this poem is, of course, hendecasyllabic. Wheeler (1934 ) 52 writ es, Hendecasyllabi is another term which was originally metrical only, but it is not a generic term. hendecasyllabic to aid him in making an attack (42.1 ff) and he used t he meter again and again 45 Quae sit, quaeritis? 46 ridentem catuli ore Gallicani
23 delivering his order that she return his tablet s 47 Catullus, realizing that his insults are only barel y causing her to blush (line 16 17), decides to change his method and instructs his hendecasyllabi to treat her nicely, now calling her pudica et proba (24). 48 At first look, it seems that Catullus is a bandoning one of the stated functions for his rowdy group of poems, shouting in the street that even though he suggests a change in tactic s he does not erase the opening of this poem. Although he is no longer ordering his poems to follow her around and chastise her, 49 he does not delete his opening descriptions of her from lines 8 9 or 13 14. 50 His audience will still read the insults that he flings at her, and Catullus manages to depict himself as a sly and witty character who can deliver his mockery even when he appears to be recanting Catullus leaves this girl with two choices both of which will negatively reflect on her: first, if she tak es the final compliments, then she is an unlearned and nave reader of poems ; 51 attitude at the end, then she remains a moech a and will continue to be criticized for her character flaws As such, the poem see m s to have a chieved its two goals: first, to get his tablets returned and, second, to cast dispersion on this woman for her faults, whether real, imagined, or exaggerated This idea of ironic recantation is part of original Palinode makes an interesting comparison with the recantation described here in 47 Twice, at lines 11 12 and 19 Moecha putida, redde codicillos! / Redde, putida moecha, codicillos! 48 Pudica certainly recalls put ida as it is nearly a rearrangement of the same letters. 49 Persequamur eam et reflagitemus. 50 Non assis facis? O lutum, lupanar, aut si perditius potest quid esse. value it as anything? O dirty thing, O whorehouse, or i 51 about the litter bearers, as well as Carmen 40 with his address to Ravidus (this poem will be addressed later on within this Introduction).
24 Catullus 42. 52 Stesichorus was afflicted with blindness f or his slander of Helen of Troy and came to recognize the reason for his disease. Thus, he composed the Palinode as his recantat ion, and his sight was restored. 53 which Catullus twists in Carmen 42. Instead of following the literary model of Stesichorus, Catullus recantation does not retract his earlier accusations or n ame calling. Rather, he leaves the sordid description of this woman in place without apology leaves the invective attack against his adversary intact. In addition to poems in which Catullus addresses his poems themselves as if they are personal entities, he also includes references to them and their role as agents of Rumor Poem 36 is a nother recantation poem, written in answer to a request of his girl ( mea puella line 2). She exchange for his getting back together with her. Additionally, she had ordered that Catullus stop writing his truces iambos (5). Ne vertheless, Catullus manages to present for the sacrifice to Vulcan, since his puella had vowed to destroy the worst poems available (she through this trick Catullus and his corpus escape undamaged) Thus, Catullus is wittily able to fulfill the vow and cacata carta 54 line, and these two lines serve as bookends to reveal the message of h is poem. This poem, for him to stop writing is more a poem about 52 According to the Suda, Stesichorus lived c. 632 c. 556 in Magna Graecia, and his poetry was collected in 26 books, covering the mythological subjects of Homer and Hesiod. He is known for his originality in versions of myth ( Suda 193.17 18). 53 Gerber (19 97) 239 240. 54 Line 1 and line 20.
25 the potential renewal of his affair with his puel la with an invective attack against the worthless annals of Volusius. Catullus again calls his poetry iambos (1) in poem 40. 55 It should be noted here that Catullus feels justified in calling a hendecasyllabic poem iambos 56 Addressed to Ravidus, the diminutive vocative opens with what could be an empathetic tone. 57 Catullus bemoans the fact that Ravidus, inspired by either an unsound mind or an offended god, propels himself against 58 Catullus presents his iambics as an army, awaiting the headlong rush of a doomed enemy, and he describes this conflict as insane ( vecordem line 4). If any reader had mistakenly read this poem as an empathetic warning for Ravidus this pretense is removed at line 5 when Catullus switches into attack mode a nd asks if Ravidus is doin g all this for notoriety. Additionally, Catullus finally reveals what crime Ravidus has committed, namely daring to pay amores 59 show of affecti on, which is to be lambasted in this poem for posterity. After reading the entirety of the poem, it can be seen that Catullus is not empathetic in the opening lines. Rather, as only sets up Ravidus as a pitiful character in lines 1 4 for the revelation that Ravidus is in fact 55 See also poem 36, written in h endecasyllables. Garrison (1989) 116 notes the reminiscence of Archilochus (172 West) in this poem, the seventh century father of iambic verse. The end of this introduction will deal more invective of Archilochus. 56 Wheeler (1934) 43 he clothed it in any 57 Miselle Ravide line 1. 58 Thomson (1997 ) 308 out of your wits? You will be a laughing stock to 59 Garrison (1989) 116 argues that the object of this love is Lesbia, not Juventius, who had been referred to in 15.1 and 21.4 as meos amores For the purpose of my argument here, it is of relatively little importance wh om Catullus is attacking or why, just that Catullus is once again attacking his addressee.
26 getting what he is looking for, namely notoriety at the expense of defamation 60 In addition the dullard Ravidus does not realize the power incurring such damage as Catullus can wield against him. Not even Catullus thinks that an iambic attack should In poem 69, Catullus turns his attention to Rufus, who has be en asking why he cannot get a girlfriend. Similar to the setup of poem 40, Catullus does not begin his attacks in the opening couplets. Instead, Catullus shows the lengths to which Rufus goes in order to gain the affections of a woman. 61 But, at line 5, Catullus switches from his narrative to the explanation for why Rufus is unsuccessful in his pursuits. Catullus calls it a quaedam mala fabula (5), best translated that a foul smelling goat lives in his armpits It is this that all 62 Catullus ends nasorum pestem ), or to stop asking why ladies shun his company. Cat u goal for this poem is -to defame. Catullus trux caper (6). The choice of trux recall s the truces iambos of Carmen 36. Also, if Catullus were really lo oking to help out a friend who was already failing in the arena of love, he certainly would not have written a poem describing the foul smell and the adverse reaction of any women (and for that matter, men) around him. As such, it becomes clear that the qu aedam mala fabula is actually this poem of Catullus. This would support the suggestion that Rufus is M. Caelius 60 Line 6 ). 61 Literally, to gain access to a tenerum femur line 2. He has tried to incite them with bribes and gifts, as described in lines 3 4. This poem is written in elegiac couplet, which seems appropriate for the opening lines. However, Catullus soon switches the tone and topic from an elegiac lover unsuccessfully wooing maidens to true invective, which just happens to be the reason for unsuccessful attempts 62 Line 7: H unc metuunt omnes, neque mirum.
27 Rufus, an ally of Cicero with Clodia Metellus (often identified as Catullus puella ). 63 This Rufus actually had a and so this poem gains new meaning. Instead of being a from women by the persona l attack that he has an unnatural smell which all women should shy Poem 69 is also more easily understood when paired with poem 71. 64 The addressee is again the implied Catullus, and the narrator tells him that aemulus iste tuus damned odor ( hircus line 1) and also gout ( tarda podagra line 2). This man, whom we can assume to be Rufus again due to the reference to his foul stench, deserves ( merito line 2) these afflictions. In exchange for his affair with 65 this man has contracted the diseases which she in fact caught from Catullus! For as often he copulates with her, just as often do they both suffer ( Nam quotiens futuit, totiens ulciscitur ambos 5). She shares in his horrible smell, and he poem acts as Rumor personified, serving to humorously disparage both of these characters to his audience. Similarly, Catullus lays out in 78B how his writings will negatively portray his subjects f or posterity. 66 Angered because someone has defiled the pure lip s of (presumably his) chaste girl, 63 Garrison (1989) 152, 168 64 Also written in hendecas yllables. Although there are no names mentioned in this poem, it is certainly talking about similar issues, and therefore likely the same people. 65 qui vestrum exercet amorem 66 Although generally joined with poem 78, these poems do not seem to coincide in terms of topic or address. However, it is obvious that something Sed nunc
28 Catullus swears that this offender will not get away unpunished. 67 For all ages will know you and, old lady rumor will say, what type of person you are ( Nam te omnia saecla / noscent et, qui sis, fama loquetur anus 5 6). In the previous poems discussed Catullus did not openly s ay that he would use his poetry as a weapon, but merely presented the poem as that and let the reader recognize this tactic However, Catullus personifies Rumor here as an anus saying that she will tell to all the ages just who this offender is. Catullus is openly identifying his poetry as a powerful weapon, which will besmirch any offenders for all of his present and f uture readers Finally, the closing couplet of the potency to shame 68 In this invective poem against Gellius, Catullus concludes : me: but you, pierced b y my missiles, will ask for aid ( Contra nos tela ista tua evitabimus acta: / at fixus nostris to dabi(s) supplicium 7 8) Catullus envisions his poetry as missiles capable of attacking and harming his opponents. 67 Line 1 Quod pura e pura puellae / suavia comminxit spurca saliva tua. / Verum id non impune feres 68 This poem, as Garrison ( 1989 ) 163 note s makes direct reference to Callimachus with Battiadae (2).
29 CHAPTER 3 CATULLUS ON SOCIAL C ONTRACTS Catullus often aims his invective poetry at characters who have transgressed against written, agreed, or implied social contracts. Chiefly, Catullus publishes the crimes of those who would steal from him (12, 25, 33, 42, 103, 110) He writes these poems a gainst thieves of his property as warning shots, intended to force the errant parties to rectify the wrong committed against the narrator. Moreover, Catullus details for his audience his anger against real life characters due to his account of this social faux pas In these poems, Catullus is not just a social moralist, preaching propriety in ancient Rom others to show his urge towards urbanitas and the associated qualities such as venustas But this is hardly ever done with reference to a collective rather than to his own judgement or a single 69 Of course, Catullus hopes that his peers and audience will uphold the same moral standards that he embraces. Nevertheless, he is writing as a singular author to and against real individuals who act incorrectly at his expense. Many of these poems include comic tones, but His comic portrayals increase the demeaning and derisive nature of these accusations against his addressees, providing for his audience scenes of mockery and humiliation of any character who is so foolish as to steal from him. Recent scholarship has begun to focus on poetry. M this program of social analysis was possible in the first century BCE. 70 On the other hand, Wray 69 Heyworth (2001) 135 70 Miller (1994) 120 140 usness necessitates a social analysis, while argues, exists as the first true (extant) lyric poet.
30 of social interaction 71 of checks and balances often not limited to social peers but even aimed at more privileged characters such as Caesar or Cicero. As such thes e attacks surpass mere literary angst for private reasons and become for the social good of Rome. In poem 12, Catullus attacks Marrucinus Asinius for stealing linen dinner napkins ( lintea 3). Catullus tells how the party goers were not paying attention ( n eglegentiorum 3) due to frivolity and wine drinking ( in ioco atque vino 2), but he immediately returns to his addressee: Hoc salsum esse putas? Fugit te, inepte! 4). Scholars argue over the level of anger present in this invective attack directed at Asinius 72 Asinius for remov judg ment which appa l 73 Nappa shifts the Veranius and Fabullus, the two dear friends who gave the gift to Catullus. Nappa describes the napkin theft as convivium in order to deliver 71 Wray (2001) 60 Catullan poem, on this reading [of being good at being a man] is above all a captatio for approbation), a lacessatio of behavior and harshly punishes deviance from those norms through public disgrace. But, [for Catullus] the poem appears chiefly to express and embody the s heer enjoyment of heaping (122). 72 Thomson (1997 ) 239 73 Godwin (1999) 129 130.
31 74 certainly praises his bonds of friendship with V eranius and Fabullus; n evertheless, the force of the poem com manu sinistra / non ; 2 3, 5). 75 Catullus then implies the negative thefts (6 9). Catullus wittily demands his napkin back, or he threatens three hundred hendecasyllables ( Quare aut hendecasyllabos trecentos / exspecta, aut mih i linteum remitte 10 11). Nonetheless the damage of offenders in his reca ntation poems of 40, 42, and 69. Even if the napkin is returned description of Asinius as an idiotic thief remains for posterity. Similar to poem 12, Catullus again attacks a napkin stealer in poem 25. Thallus is the thief this time, and Catullus accuses him of stealing a cloak and notebooks from Bithynia in addition to his expen 76 ). Catullus again uses inepte (8), reiterating his opening abuse of Thallus as a cinaedus (1), which translates as either an effeminate man or someone who allows themselves to be penetrated by another man. This insul t of effeminacy is continued with mollior 74 N appa (2001) 109. 75 manu sinistra 1) was responsible. This allows the audience to ponder what exactly the foul deed was, from offe nses involving hygiene to sexual Catullus reveals that Asinius used the hand with which he wipes his ass to filch this napkin. 76 The finest linen in Europe was p roduced in Saetabis, according to Pliny N.H. 19.9.
32 These comparisons continue to amplify the sexual passivity of Thallus as well as increase the insults to his manhood. Then Catullus changes his description to say that this very man ( idem 4) has been snatching up ( rapacior 4) and violating ( involasti 6) people who have not been careful with their pos sessions (5). Catullus then lists his exotic possessions, which Thallus is actually p arading as family heirlooms (8). Finally, Catullus demands that Thallus return his property ( remitte 9), otherwise whips will lash insults into his effeminate hands and b ackside ( ne laneum latusculum manusque mollicellas / inusta turpiter tibi flagella conscribillent 10 11). Thus, this poem greatly resembles the invective attack against Asinius, but threatens even greater punishment. Not only will Catullus invoke harsh in sults against Thallus, but the wounds will scribbl ed rage its defamatory 77 These two poems, coupled together, argue a different tone than one merely of social critique. Rather, Catullus wields his poetry as a whip publishing his insults and accusations and he is not afraid to call down even harsher punishments again st those who would steal from him. Catullus handles a pair of greedy thieves in poem 33. Catullus accuses the father, Vibennius, of stealing possessions and his accomplice son of being a cinaedus Godwin calls this nking the father and son together in crime and in word repetition (pater fili, 2; pater filius, 3 4; patris fili, 6 8). As punishment for their crimes, Catullus tells them to go into exile ( cur non exilium malasque in oras / it is 5 6). 78 He ends the poem notae populo 77 Godwin (1999) 141, Thomson (1997) 266 78 This is part of the iambic tradition of scape goating ( pharmakos be cast upon a specific character, who was then shunned and mocke d by the community. For further study on the scape goat, see Compton (2006).
33 natis pilosas, / fili, non potes asse venditare 7 8). Godwin notes that the unpleasant descript is of being a cinaedus 79 Nevertheless, Thomson states that ot to be taken literally, but rather as part of a literary trope. Vibennius is unknown as a real person, and his unnamed son gives no further clues. It is of little significance whether the insults against Vibennius are true, but rather the reason for thes e insults shows once again that Catullus will not be prey to thieves of any type or class. If these attacks are fictional jests at a bath house character, Catullus still instills hatred for such unsavory characters. nguage of this poem, Wray writes that his attacks affirm the social norms while punishing any deviations with the use of public disgrace. heaping communally shared derisive laughter upon victims who lack recourse or defense of any 80 Catullus uses his poetry to create a stage for attacks against foul characters such as Vibennius. He does this not only to point out and correct moral wrongs, but also so that his a udience can laugh along with him at his witty depictions. woman who stole his writing tablets (the moechia putida of poem 42) Thomson rightly calls this poem, dis cussed in depth in Chapter 2 a flagitatio which describes the action of a mob shouting abuses at a thief or debtor. 81 Once again, Catullus play s upon the recantation of Ste sichorus offering to stop proclaiming insults if only his rightful property is re turned for him. 79 Godwin (1999) 150 Thomson (1997 ) 289 80 Wray (2001) 122 81 Thomson (1997) 311 312. Again, this type of abuse was typical of the pharmakos tradition in iambic poetry.
34 punish -to blame and defame Catullus demand s his money back with a threat in poem 103. He issues this request for the return of ten seste rces ( decem sestertia 1) to Silo. Catullus is overly cordial, and thus ironic in his niceties, with the use of both sodes quaeso The reasons for the original exchange of money are unclear at the beginning, and are only revealed with leno Thus, it would seem that Catullus bought a service from this pimp that was not fulfilled, which is why Catullus wants his money returned. With this revelation, the two options given to Silo by Catullu s are brought into better light: either return the money or stop being a boor ( saevus et indomitus 4). The second option introduces a bit of a problem, but he 82 Another postulation would be that Catullus has demanded a replacement for the services purchased, which would be the return to good service that he is hoping for. That is why it would become acceptabl e for Silo to keep his money. Thomson assumes that a pimp would have been below the station necessary for an invective poem of this sort, but does not give a better interpretation of the situation. Thomson prefers leno to be a term of abuse used to express his level of frustration and anger with Silo for not returning his money. Either way, Catullus once again portrays himself on the short end of a deal, and resorts to invective poetry against his opponent to resolve the issue. A poem which could very well shed light on the differing interpretations of 103 is poem 110, addressed to Aufillena. As Catullus reports, Aufillena offered her body in exchange for money and then refused to comply after receiving payment. Thus, Catullus has once again fallen 82 Godwin (1999) 214
35 on the s hort end in a deal. Catullus argues that she is worse than a greedy whore ( plus quam meretricis a varae 7) who will let anyone do whatever they want with her entire body for money ( quae sese toto corpore prostituit 8 ) since at least the meretrix follows through on her word. For Catullus, honesty even when bartering over sex is of the utmost importance bonae simper laudantur amicae: / accipiunt pretium, quae facere institu unt 1 2). Thus, although Aufillena wants to remain a chaste girl ( ingenuae 5), she comes out as worse than a prostitute since she took his money and g ifts and then refused herself Again, Catullus plainly states the idea of thievery with rapinae at 33.6, rapacior at 25.4, and tollis at 12.3. This theme of an unprovided service in poem 110 resolves the problem presented by s a leno both of these poems call for the fulfillment of a service that has already been purchased and paid for. Catullus is not, however, merely making a social critique, even an explicit one dealing with sexual entrepreneurs, on their failures to deliver. The repercussions for stealing from him, or for failing to provide hi m with services he has bought, all lead to the same punishment. Catullus publicly chastises, mocks, and ridicules these mistakes until they are rectified. If he is not appeased, he typically threatens more use of his poetic weapon lambasting and lampoonin g for his adversaries. Even pimps, whores, and bath house prostitutes are not beneath his derision, provided that Catullus feels he has been slighted.
36 CHAPTER 4 CATULLUS THE INVECTIVE LOVER Just as Catullus threatens and delivers invective poetry again st thieves of his property, he similarly directs his poetic anger towards his deserting lovers and those who would steal them compliance from his lovers and his opponents is his poetry. This chapter will embark upon a close reading of the Lesbia/ puella poems, and will additionally Catullus directs invective poems against rivals for their affections and discusses his own failures Catullus as lover is rarely satisfied, and even in his happiest moments he portrays himself as worrying about outside influences and future failures. 83 Catullus inserts a negative, foreboding tone into several of his more famous poems celebrating his lov e affairs. N Both poems open with an address to Lesbia and propose a limitless number of kisses for their relationship. Both poems end with the suggestion that they not allow anyone, including themselves, to know the number of their kisses. Catullus worries that this knowledge could be used against them by curiosi quis malus 5 .12), both of whom would envy their kisses ( invidere 5.12) and even cast a spell against them ( mala fascinare lingua 7.12). 84 Thus, Catullus wants to hide the delicate aspects of their affair, lest someone should be able to use these moments of happiness and weakness against them. He is so conscious of how 83 amator may be perpetually frustrated even when he has been admitted to the presence of his puella for he never fully trusts her or believes in his amorous moments, Catullus as elegiac lover and servus amoris can still imagine her betrayals in the past, which he believes will certainly be mirrored in the future. 84 This mention of spell Odyssey Book 9, in which Polyphemus casts a spell upon Odysseus only after he gains concrete knowledge about him (his name). Certainly invidere here includes the connotation of an envious party casting the evil eye upon Catullus and his lover.
37 quickly t his affair can unravel that he includes warnings to Lesbia that they not allow anyone else to interfere, be involved, or know the details of their relationship. This insistence upon secrecy is ironic in poems which publish their love to his audience. This also illustrates how Catull ( rumoresque senum severiorum / omnes unius aestimemus assis 5. 2 3). Instead, Catullus suggests that they engage in a whirlwind love affair, but that they mirror the s ecret loves to which only night is a witness ( furtivos amores 7.8). Catullus describes his problems in his love affair with Lesbia at length and from multiple perspectives. He writes poems encouraging himself to maintain a firm resolve against her, since she does not return his loyalty. 85 The self encouragement of poem 8 is repeated in poem 87 which portrays their affair as a one sided treaty: Nulla potest mulier tantum se dicere amatam Vere, quantum a me Lesbia amata mea est. Nulla fides ullo fuit umquam foedere tanta, Quanta in amore tuo ex parte reperta mea est. No woman is able to say that she has been so truly loved, / as my Lesbia has been loved by me. / Not any such loyalty has ever been in any bond, / as has been fou nd in your love affair on my part. Thus, Catullus portrays himself as the only loyal party in their relationship In order to emphasize her betrayal, Catullus formulates this poem with the language of contracts and treaties ( fides foedere ; line 3). He als o exaggerates his loyalty by saying that no woman has ever been so loved, and ultimately he states that all the loyalty in their affair was on his part ( ex parte mea 4). 85 Poem 8 already discus sed in Chapter 2 pleads with Catullus to be hard against his mistress: obstinata (11), obdura (11), obdurat (12), destinatus obdura (19).
38 Through this language of social obligation, Catullus once again depicts for his audie nce how he relationship, but he rather endures all of injustices committed against him. S everal other poems maintain this same thread about unrequited l ove and undeserved disloyalty. Poem Catullus, even if Jupiter should attempt to woo her. But, Catullus Poem 72 similarly states how Lesbia previously pro mised her love only to Catullus, but her actions have driven him to desire her more, while he has learned to hate her. Poem 75 states that Catullus will not wish good things for her, even if she were to become the best version of herself by returning his l ove. Nevertheless, Catullus states that he is un able to stop loving her, even if she should do the worst things possible. Finally, poem 76 describes again how hard it is for Catullus to set aside his former love affair. Although he wishes Lesbia to be pure and loyal to him, he encourages himself to realize the futility of thinking that she will repay his loyalty. All of these poems publicize for openly airs his griev ance with her partially in hopes that she will right her wrongs, but also in order to mock and shame her for her betrayals. Catullus intensifies his invective poetry against Lesbia in several other poems especially when depicting her interactions with his rivals. In poem 37, Catullus describes a Lesbia, and have defiled her en masse according to her own wishes. Lines 11 14 describe how Lesbia has deserted Catullus, and 14 15 state that she chose to bed the good and noble men whom the tavern had to offer ( boni beatique 14). Although Catullus is infuriated by this betrayal, he sets up is unworthy,
39 Et quidem, quod indignum est, / omnes pusilli et semitarii moechi 15 16). It is these foul men who think that they alone are atullus then progresses to an even him beyond all the others since his offenses range beyond what is characteristic even for this licentious group: haired Celtiberia, whom his shaggy beard makes out to cuniculosae Celtiberiae fili, / Egnati, opaca quem bonum facit barba et dens Hibera defricatus urina 18 20). Catullus refe rs here to the allegation that Spaniards kept their teeth white by means of urine. 86 He begins th is insult by insinuating that being long haired is soft and unmanly which he ascribes to all the occupants of the tavern ( capillatis 17 Egnatius is especiall y effeminate shown by the descriptor cuniculosae (18), which Godwin mentions as related to the ever reproducing Spanish rabbits. 87 Thus, not only does Egnatius have long hair and a n undeserved beard for which he is not yet manly enough but Catullus ends o n the note that Lesbia has entered into a dalliance with a foreigner who washes his mouth with his own urine. 88 Nevertheless, despite the hyperbole of two hundred members of this barroom, 89 Catullus states that he is not afraid to sexually assault them all An, continenter quod sedetis insulsi / centum 86 Cf. Diodorus (5.33.5) and Strabo (3.164). 87 Godwin (1999) 156 88 Egna tius is also individually lampooned as the addressee of poem 39. 89 (1999 ) 155 Thus, by increasing the number of people who have transgressed against him, Catullus increases his invective firepower to match the number of targets.
40 (an ducenti?) non pu tatis ausurum / me una ducentos irrumare sessores? lines 6 specific means of assault comes in the next two lines, as he writes that he will draw pictures of phalli ( sopionibus 10) all over the front of the at is to defile his opponents by writing. Of course, here he specifically threatens graffiti, but this entire poem them the just and equal retribution of thi s poem. Similarly, Catullus delinquency by depicting her as having slept with two hundred men all in a row. Poem 58 again uses anonymous rivals to depict Lesbia despicable exploits taint ing her. nt of this poem 90 it poses at the beginning as a lament but ends most importantly with the exaggerated depiction of Lesbia performing acts fit for a common street whore. The mock lament beg ins by naming Lesbia three times, again describing how Catullus loved her more than himself and all others ( plus quam se atque suos amavit omnes 3). 91 The past action of amavit sharply contrasts with the present as signified by nunc at the beginning of line 4, where now Lesbia is performing sexual acts ( glubit ) in public for ( magnanimi Remi nepotes 5). This mock epic phrasing for Romans is paired ironically with the in crossroads and alleyways. Together, this establishes the entire poem as a mockery of Lesbia functioning to illustrate her indiscriminate indecency by claiming that she is committing this act in dirty locations for the entire Roman citizenry. Poem 71 already discussed in Chapter 2 is also pertinent as an invective attack against pits himself against them. In line 3, Catullus claims 90 Thomson (1997) 342 argues that Catullus is wroug ht with disillusionment and, through the repetition of names and the reference to their former affair, he is abandoned and alone with the harsh present reality 91 Cf. poems 70, 72, 75, 76, and 87 for the theme of unreturned love.
41 this man as a rival ( aemulus iste tuus ) who competes with his love affai r. Ne vertheless, Catullus gains the upper hand even when his beloved chooses the rival, since the man, assumed to be the Lesbia is also punished by sacer hircus ) de scribed in lines 1 2. Poem 82 however, offers an interesting contrast to the descriptions normally given to these rivals and to Lesbia as rewards for her philandering. Catullus changes his normal tactic of insult and abuse: Quinti, si tibi vis oculos debe re Catullum Aut aliud si quid carius est oculis, Eripere ei noli, multo quod carius illi Est oculis seu quid carius est oculis. ( Catullus 82.1 4 ) Quintius, if you wish for Catullus to owe his eyes to you / or anything which is dearer than his eyes, / do not try to snatch away from him what is dearer to him by a lot / than his eyes or (dearer than) whatever else is dearer than his eyes. It is common to associate this poem with the Lesbia cycle due to its repetition of carius oculis which also occurs at 104.2 ( carior oculis ). 92 This phrase is then associated with mea vita (104.1), which occurs again at 109.1 where the addressee and character in question is certainly Lesbia. This identification, although compelling, is secondary compared to the implied threat which sh ould be read as the motivation for the message. Catullus is trying a new tact here, since Quintius seemingly has not yet done something irreparable. Thus, Catullus entreats Quintius with the promise of anything else in the world in exchang e for not taking away his beloved. The repeated requital Catullus promises with this 92 See Ferguson (1985) 271, Garrison (1989) 155, Godwin (1999) 196, and Thomson (1997) 509 510 for this alignment with the Lesbia cycle.
42 poem that Quintius can either earn an ingratiated Catullus, or he can fear the treatment normally presumably another poem full of invective attacks to mock and abuse Quintius. Catullus again heaps abuse on Lesbia at the close of poem 11. 93 The opening reveri e of the two non comrades Aurelius and Furius, touring the world with Catullus is shattered by his message that he wants them to deliver to his puella This tact of abruptly switching from one topic to another often occurs in Catullan structures 94 In this poem, Catullus shatters the epic scenery at line 15 when he asks for these two men to act as envoys: Pauca nuntiate meae puellae / non bona dicta 15 16). The parting message (lines 17 20) is that she can go on living happily with her foul adulterers, sleeping with three hundred at a time (as compared to poem 37, where she was involved with either centum or ducenti ). Once again, Catullus concludes his depiction of her affairs with rivals identidem omnium / ilia rumpens 19 20). The final stanza returns to the theme that she has broken their love contract, this time compa ring her to a plow uncaringly destroying a flower as it passes. 95 In this the role of a flower on 93 I prefer to read the opening 14 lines as irony taken to an extreme measure (Garrison 1989:102 ; cf. Thomson 1997: 235 and Godwin 1999: 128, who b oth read Aurelius and Furius as friends at this point). A s Catullus suddenly shifts from the epic descriptions of Egypt, the Alps, the Rhine and Britain he turn s to his real message. Aurelius and Furius, who are most often described in a negative light by Catullus in the rest of his corpus, are of course not the best and noblest comrades of Catullus ( comites Catulli 1), and Catullus would not want to go into any military service, especially anything that would involve him with Caesar ( Caesaris magni 10). Thus, I see this poem as more unified when judged by the final lines 15 24 94 See Ferguson (1985) 45 for a full bibliography on this poem, including Ferguson (1956) 53 54 on Catullan recantations; also Kinsey (1965) 537 544. 95 Along with poem 51, poem 11 poem.
43 the periphery of the field. 96 As such, he has become the victim and the scapegoat, ex iled and castrated s affairs. The invective tone of the Lesbia/ puella cycle parallels poems about Juventius. As with Lesbia, rivals appear whom Catullus must dispatch through his invective poetry. Poem 15 is addressed to the same Aureli us of poem 11, 97 and begs that he not befoul his beloved. This poem Commendo tibi me ac meos amores, Aureli. / Veniam peto pudentem 1 2). After describing how he does not fear the common people, Catullus redirects his verum a te metuo tuoque pene / infest pueris bonis malisque 9 10) Yet again Catullus threaten s revenge against his rival if Aurelius is crazy enough Quem attractis pedibus patente porta / percurrent rap hanique mugilesque 18 19). So, Catullus threatens that he will use his poetry to Such an aggressive attack stands out for its explicitness, but Catullus writes it as the fitting punishment for som eone who would not consider his threats and pleas as serious. Catullus returns his attention to a n oncompliant Aurelius at poem 21. Catullus threatens him more forcefully this time, without the opening plea for a favor. Catullus mentions only the negative consequences if Aurelius does not cease ( desine 12): he will be sodomized for sure! The repetition of irrumatione (8) and irrumatus (13) reinforces the equal punishment for the crime of trying to anally ravage his love ( Pedicare cupis meos amores 4). 96 See Greene (2007) 142 146 for the interplay between these two poems of Catullus and the Sapphic model. 97 other rivals.
44 Poem s 23 and 2 4 continue the Juventius cycle against another rival Furius. Catullus attempts to dissuade Juventius from having a relationship with Furius. Compared to the overly flaw is that he has no money. Catullus repeats this three times with only slight changes in the wording : cui neque servus est neque arca 24. 5, 8, 10). This phrase is itself a quotation of the opening line of 23, which Furi, cui neque servus est neque arca 1). Thus bello that you had given the riches o f Mallem 4 6). Godwin describes the logic of the (1999: 140). I t would seem that Catullus so highly prefers that Juventius remain untainted by Furius that he would actually grant Furius the one thing that stands as a n obstacle to his pursuits of love Although this suggestion is illogical, since Juventius would no longer have any reas on to refuse his approaches, it makes sense in that Catullus would authorize anything to keep Furius away from his beloved. Catullus thus threatens rivals for his lov with physical and sexual abuse, so that his poems become a form of literar y abuse by encapsulating the threats. As his invective attacks, he describes the sordid attributes of these rivals, and negatively construes the love affairs of Juventius and Lesbia with others as public gangbangs of the most lascivious nature possible. Fo reigners, bankrupt fools, people with horrible hygiene, and crowded barrooms are unworthy options for his lovers, and so they should stop fooling around and return to the security of his loyalty Despite all his invective attacks, Catullus does not excise these relationships from his life. Rather, he depicts himself as the noble victim of unrequited love. In the couplet that makes
45 but I feel that it happens and Odi et amo. Quare id faciam, fortasse requiri. / Nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior ). Catullus depicts time and time again, as he portrays himself as t he passive recipient of torture, that h is only recourse is to threaten and potential ly enact revenge and punishment on his treacherous lovers as well as those for whom his lovers leave him. amo ) is to encompass it in another powerful emotion, hatred ( odi ).
46 CHAPTER 5 CATULLUS 116 & RETALIATORY RAGE life characters. He attacks Aurelius and Furius for being effeminate (poem 23), as well as their inappropriate advances on his lovers, Juventius and Lesbia. He repeate dly chastises Mamurra, a companion of Julius Caesar whom he nickname s Mentula the use of his wealth and his excessive fornications (57, 94, 105). In poems 97 and 98, he ridicules Aemilius and Victius for their lack of elegance. He mocks several other person s throughout the rest of his corpus, including Piso (28, 47), Suffenus (22), and Cicero (49) Nevertheless, the character against whom Catullus expends the most ink and venom is 98 against him ran ge from an incestuous affair with his aunt (74) to sexual liaisons with his own mother and sister (88 91). Catullus employs vulgar and obscene language ( aischrologia ) in these descriptions, describing depraved sexual acts meant to degrade and humiliate Gel family. It is quite fitting frequently filled with i nsults and slander for so many reasons and motivations such a great variety persons, is traditionally ended with poem 116, which is also addressed to Gellius: Saepe tibi studioso animo venante requires Carmina uti possem vertere Battiadae, Qui te lenirem nobis, neu conarere Tela infe sta meum mittere in usque caput. 98 This is ass umedly Lucius Gellius Poplicola, consul in 36 BCE and son of the consul in 72 BCE. His alleged incest with his stepmother is also treated by Valerius Maximus (5.9.1). A Caeli Pro Caelio 23). He was probably an epigrammatist and thus also a literary rival to Catullus, in addition to his rivalry in the magnus amor (91.6), presumably meaning Lesbia. For more information on Gellius, see Ferguson (1985) 247, Garrison (1989) 168, Thomson (1997) 497.
47 Hunc video mihi nu nc frustra sumptum esse laborem, Gelli, nec nostras hic valuisse preces. Con tra nos tela ista tua evitabimus acta: ( Catullus 116: 1 8 ) Often searching with a studious mind hunting out for you / how I might be able to translate poems of Callimachus, / by which I might soften you towards me, and so that you would not try / to send h ostile weapons right at my head. / I now see that this labor was taken up in vain, / Gellius, and that in this my prayers have not been successful. / I will avoid those deadly weapons of yours, aimed against us: / but you, pierced by my weapons, will pay the penalty. 99 As we have seen in other poems of retraction, the opening innocence and vain attempts to plea se Gellius are not sincere. Rather, they stand as a tour de force for Catullus, which was indeed a translation of Callimachus. Additionally, Catullus poses himself for his audience as the innocent in this inferior, Catullus manages to avoid them ( evitabimus 7) and respond with his own missiles ( nostris 8). Ferguson argues that tela (7, there modified by the con trasting tua ) is not the appropriate antecedent for nostris He proposes carmina (all the way back at 2) as the best choice for what nostris telis and that is not wrong. But we can carry the inversion a little further back. Catullus has sought carmina mittere Gellius tela mittere 100 His point of emphasis is slightly misplaced. Catullus is indeed intending and ready t o fire his own weapons, but these are exactly his carmina compar 99 Garrison (1989) 163 100 Ferguson (1985) 345
48 couplet reveals the true intention of this poem, as well as dealings with Gellius: to assault him vigorously with invective poetry. A Callimachean mollificati on of iambic fury has proven ineffective. 101 Due to the content of this poem, it seems at first glance to be incorrectly positioned at the end of the collection. As discussed earlier, there were already several poems included which abused Gellius in just the manner that readers would expect after reading poem 116. Godwin 102 Godwin discusses 116 in terms of ring composition, including the phr ases studioso animo (1.2, 116.1) and the close association of lepidum novum libellum (1.1) with same time emphasizing the pointless nature of his trifles ( nugas 1.4). Perhaps poem 116 was followed by other poems of abuse towards Gellius, and it very well may be that poems 74, 80, and 88 90 represent a continued downward spiral in their relationship. In this way poem 116 continued retaliatory rage against Gellius. 103 Some of the metrical and verbal choices of this poem have been analyzed as irregular and perhaps even un he lumbering first sentence, trailing over six lines, 101 iambic verse, one that was distinguished from the Hipponactean iambus, by toning down the note associated with refinement, which Catullus ultimately refuses as the proper mode for his iambic. 102 Godwin (1999 ) 222. 103 Perhaps as poem 91 suggests, Gellius had played him false over a mutu al love interest. Skinner (2003) 124 describes this final poem as a coda, whose task previous epigrams have to provide further rants against his enemies (namely Gellius), then Catullus would most likely have suggested that they reread his poetry and continue to propagate his negative depictions of all the foul characters who harmed him (Skinner 2003: 179, 228).
49 the metrical crudity of line 3, and the unique ecthlipsis of s in line 8, make this angry outburst 104 rustic elegant and serious efforts (line 1). 105 106 The elision of statement in Orator 161 that this usage had become quite provincial and boorish ( subrusticum ) by 46 BCE, and that the neoteroi avoided such a stylis tic faux pas Skinner, among other scholars, makes a superb assertion that this elision recalls Ennius: ( Ennius Annales 94 95 Skutsch). 107 With these two metrical oddities both referring to Ennius, Skinner proposes that Catullus is perhaps even 108 Macleod, by the supposition that Catullus hate driven Ibis as disparate from the rest of his corpus formulates sion of Callimachus as a programmatically peaceable and civilized man In line with this vision, poetic programme as infused 104 Fordyce (1961) 403. 105 Godwin (1989) 222 223 106 Thomson (1997) 554 555 Thomson also discusses and dismisses on 554 the possibility that these metrical peculiarities might suggest that this is not the genuine work of Catullus. Rather, I woul survey of foreign lands in poem 11. As discussed previously, Catullus proceeds from there to order Aurelius and Furius to deliver an unflattering message to Lesbia and dispatches them as well in poem 16. 107 Skinner (2003) 21 22 whom he must and will kill. Skinner also notes the inversion of the normal brotherly relationship expressed with such heart felt love and grief in poem 101 to the 108 Skinner (2003) 22. Skinner acknowledges the pre vious work of Macleod (1973) and Zetzel (1983). This is in stark contrast to the works of many authors, including King, whose article nity of the poems 65 ).
50 with the qualities of learning and refinement that in no way resembled the impassioned and often vulgar attacks which Catullus so frequently employs. 109 Macleod describes the association of a n poems] Catullus sets the poetry of insult or imprecation, which is indicated, as often, by the metaphor of weapons and battle. The juxtaposition of Callimachean and vituperative writing is not a casual one; rather the two are 110 This asses sment of the separation between Catullan poems. Macleod, Wray, and Newman, among others, assert that this model for Catullan invective poetry is Archilochus. Wray makes a textual connection between the end of 116 and an ematically with an iambic trime ter of Archilochus, a one verse fragment probably referring to Lycambes ( of Catullus ( at non effigies meos iambos 111 Wray continues this distinction between the invective poets when he refers Ibis which contains a passage (41 112 Ovid sets up this differentiation: Postmodo, si perges, in te mihi liber iambus Tincta Lycambeo s anguine tela dabit. Nunc quo Battiades inimicum devovet Ibin, Hoc ego devoveo teque tuosque modo. ( Ovid Ibis 51 54 ) 109 Macleod (1973) 306 110 Macleod (1973) 305 111 Wr ay (2001) 189 112 Wray (2001) 193 195
51 Later, if you continue, free wheeling iambus will give to me / weapons against you stained with the blood of Lycambes. / Now, in the ma nner in which the son of Battus [Callimachus] cursed his enemy, Ibis, / I will curse you and yours in this way. This passage certainly recalls the aforementioned Ennian passage and Catullus 116 with its use of tela and Battiades A t the same time Ovid est ablishes a distinction between the Archilochean tradition of iambus and the works of Callimachus. Ovid read him, placed Callimachus and Archilochus at opposite ends of a spectrum of manly 113 It follows then that Catullus, although acknowledging at times his poetic debt to Callimachus, did not associate his iambic invective with Callimachean poetics. Instead, Callimachus was more suited for a conciliatory poem, as Catullus suggested at 116.2. With any reconciliation out of the picture, however, Catullus turns to Archilochus, his prototype for invective. 116 stands as a retrospective look upon his collecti on, setting aside the possibility of reconciling a weapon of war and an instrument of public execution. This can only be an evocation of the tradition of Archilochus 114 Ovid recognized Ibis and Quintilian note s Catullus as an iambographer Iam bus non sane a Romanis celebratu s est ut proprium opus, a quibusdam interpositus: cuius acerbitas in Catullo, Bibaculo, Horatio, quam quam illi epodos intervenire non reperiatur 115 Thus, Catullus was also considered by Quintilian as an iambist. Although Catullus can fairly be described as Callimachean and 113 Wray (2001) 195 114 Newman (1990) 45 115 I.O. Iambus has not been claimed by the Romans as their own achievement, though it is incidentally employed by some. Its bitterness is in Catullus, Bibaculus, Horace although in the case of the former [Catullus] th Newman (1990) 46
52 also Archilochean it is the carmen Battiadae which fail him in this closin g poem Thus, Catullus asserts Archilochus as his model for his invective attacks.
53 CHAPTER 6 CONCLUSION This thesis explores the iambic nature of Catullan invective poetry. These attacks are meant to blame and shame his enemies for any wrong, imagined or real, which they may have already or might commit. Catullus assaults them with vulgar accusations of rape, incest, bankruptcy, indecency, and bad hygiene. When his property i s stolen, he shames the offending party with reprimands and threats of further diatribes. When facing an opponent for one of his lovers, he turns to invective poetry to publicly insult both his philandering lover and their seducers. When Catullus confronts one of his mortal enemies, such as Gellius, he levels a full barrage of insults. For the poet Catullus, his weapon was his poetry. He viewed it as an agent of rumor ready to spread insults and accusations to his entire audience. When ultimately forced to choose his poetic model, Catullus reasserts the iambus of Archilochus (and Hipponax) over that of Callimachus A as predicted at the outset (poem 1, again at 65) can not be entirely effaced i t is the Lycambid styled blame and shame which fashions and informs out his corpus, aligning him with the Archilochean tradition.
54 LIST OF REFERENCES Butrica, J. L. 2007. n Maril yn Skinner (ed.), A Companion to Catullus Malden: Blackwell Publishing. Archilochus and Lycambes. The Classical Quarterly 36: 60 67. Compton, Todd M. 2006. Victim of the Muses: Poet as Scapegoat, Warrior, and Hero in Greco Roman and Indo European Myth and History Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Dettmer, Helena. 1997. Love by the Numbers: Form and Meaning in the Poetry of Catullus New York: P. Lang. Renunciation Poems of Catullus. Greece & Rome 3: 52 58. Fitzgerald, William F. 1995. Catullan Provocations: Lyric Poetry and the Drama of Position Berkeley: University of California Press. Fordyce, C. J. 1961. Catullus: A Commentary Oxford, Eng.: Oxford University Press. Garrison, Daniel H. 1989. The Student Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. Gerber, Douglas E. 199 7. A Companion to the Greek Lyric Poets New York: Brill. ------, ed. 1999. Greek Iambic Poetry from the Seventh to the Fifth Centuries BC Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. G odwin, John. 1999. Catullus: The Shorter Poems Warminster: Aris & Phillips. Green, El In Marilyn Skinner (ed.), A Companion to Catullus Malden: Blackwell Publishing. Halliwell, 2008. Greek Laughter: A Study of Cultural Psychology from Homer to Early Christianity New York: Cambridge University Press. Iambi n A. Cavarzere, A. Aloni, A. Barchiesi (eds.), Iambic Ideas: Essays on a Poetic Tradition from Archaic Gree ce to the Late Roman Empire 117 140. 116. The Classical World 81: 383 392. K Latomus 24: 537 544. Knox, Peter E. 2007. n Marilyn Skinner (ed.), A Companion to Catullus Malden: Blackwell Publishing.
55 The Classical Quarterly 23: 304 309. Martin, Charles. 1992. Catullus New Haven: Yale University Press. Miller, Paul Allen. 1994. Lyric Texts and Lyric Consciousness: The Birth of a Genre from Archaic Greece to Augustan Rome London: Routledge. Nappa, Christopher. 2001. Frankfurt am Main: Lang. Newman, J.K. 1967. The Concept of Vates in Augustan Poetry Latomus: Brussels. ------C onsciousness in Propertius 1.16. Classical World 101: 57 73. Rankin, H. D. 1975. Archilochos of Paros Park Ridge: Noyes Press. Skinner, Marilyn. 1981. Arrangement of the Book of Polymetrics New York: Arno Press. ------. 2003. Catullus in Verona: A Reading of the Elegiac Libellus, Poems 65 116. Columbus: Ohio State University Press. ------. 2007. A Companion to Catullus Malden: Blackwell Publishing. T homson, D. F. S., ed. 1997. Catullus Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Roll and Some Conventions of the Poetic Book Arethusa 13: 5 42. ------. 1989. "The Hellenistic Background. Recent Structural Studies on the Augustan Poets Augustan Age 9: 42 48. Veyne, Paul. 1988. Roman Erotic Elegy: Love, Poetry, and the West Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Wheeler, A.L. 1934. Catullus and the Traditions of Ancient Poetry Berkeley: University of California Press. Wr ay, David. 2001. Catullus and the Poetics of Roman Manhood New York: Cambridge University Press. Zetzel, James E. G. 1983. us, and the Poetics of Allusion. I llinois C lassical S tudies 8: 251 28 6.
56 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Bryan Henry Sansbury was born i n 1985 in Salisbury, North Carolina. The second of three children, he grew up mostly in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It is there that he began studying Latin and Greek, and graduated from The McCallie School in 2003. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in c lassical s tudies with an e mphasis in Latin from the University of South Carolina in 2007. Bryan will complete his Master of A rts in c lassics from the University of Florida in 2011.