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Publius Papinius Statius (c. 45 – c. 96) was a Roman poet of the Silver Age of Latin literature.



The translations are by D. R. Shackleton Bailey, and are taken from vol. 207 of the Loeb Classical Library (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2003).

  • Tacitumque a principe vulgus
    dissidet, et, qui mos populis, venturus amatur.
    • The crowd is at silent odds with the prince. As is the way of a populace, the man of the future is the favourite.
    • Bk. 1, line 169
  • Exedere animum dolor iraque demens
    et, qua non gravior mortalibus addita curis,
    spes, ubi longa venit.
    • Grief and mad wrath devoured his soul, and hope, heaviest of mortal cares when long deferred.
    • Bk. 2, line 319
  • Non parcit populis regnum breve.
    • A brief reign spares not the folk.
    • Bk. 2, line 446
  • O caeca nocentum
    consilia! o semper timidum scelus!
    • Blind counsels of the wicked! Crime cowardly ever!
    • Bk. 2, line 489
  • Pessimus in dubiis augur, timor.
    • Fear (in times of doubt the worst of prophets) revolves many things.
    • Bk. 3, line 6
  • Quid crastina volveret aetas
    scire nefas homini.
    • What the morrow's years might bring 'twas sin for man to know.
    • Bk. 3, line 562
  • Primus in orbe deos fecit timor.
    • Fear first made gods in the world.
    • Bk. 3, line 661
    • These words also appear in a fragmentary poem attributed to Petronius.
  • Omne homini natale solum.
    • Every soil is natal to man.
    • Bk. 7, line 320
    • Variant translation: The whole world is a man's birthplace.
  • Da spatium tenuemque moram, male cuncta ministrat
    • Give time, a little delay; impulse is ever a bad servant.
    • Bk. 10, line 704
  • Mirantur taciti et dubio pro fulmine pallent.
    • They wonder in silence and turn pale for the dubious thunderbolt.
    • Bk. 10, line 920


The translations are by D. R. Shackleton Bailey, and are taken from vol. 206 of the Loeb Classical Library (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2015).

  • Qui bona fide deos colit amat et sacerdotes.
    • Whoever worships the gods in good faith, loves their priests too.
    • Book V, Preface, line 10
  • Sic auferre rogis umbram conatur et ingens
    certamen cum Morte gerit, curasque fatigat
    artificum inque omni te quaerit amare metallo.
    Sed mortalis honos, agilis quem dextra laborat.
    • So does he strive to rescue your shade from the pyre and wages a mighty contest with Death, wearying the efforts of artists and seeking to love you in every material. But beauty created by toil of cunning hand is mortal.
    • Book V, 1, line 7
  • Nec frons triste rigens nimiusque in moribus horror
    sed simplex hilarisque fides et mixta pudori
    • Yet no stiff and frowning face was hers, no undue austerity in her manners, but gay and simple loyalty, charm blended with modesty.
    • Book V, 1, line 64


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