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MARTIAL (MARCUS VALERIUS MARTIALIS)
Spanish epigrammatic poet
(c. 43 - 104)
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Mithriades, by frequently drinking poison, rendered it impossible for any poison to hurt him. You, Cinna, by always dining on next to nothing, have taken due precaution against ever perishing from hunger.
      - Epigrams (bk. V, ep. 76) [Eating]

If you are poor now, Aemilianus, you will always be poor. Riches are now given to none but the rich.
      - Epigrams (bk. V, ep. 8) [Poverty]

You pursue, I fly; you fly, I pursue; such is my humor. What you wish, Dondymus, I do not wish, what you do not wish, I do.
      - Epigrams (bk. V, ep. 83) [Wishes]

To-morrow you will live, you always cry;
  In what fair country does this morrow lie,
    That 'tis so mighty long ere it arrive?
      Beyond the Indies does this morrow live?
        'Tis so far-fetched, this morrow, that I fear
          'Twill be both very old and very dear.
            "To-morrow I will live," the fool does say:
              To-day itself's too late;--the wise lived yesterday.
      - Epigrams (bk. V, ep. LVIII) [Tomorrow]

Do you wonder for what reason, Theodorus, notwithstanding your frequent requests and importunities, I have never presented you with my works? I have an excellent reason; it is lest you should present me with yours.
      - Epigrams (bk. V., ep. 73) [Epigrams]

He who thinks the lives of Priam and of Nestor were long is much deceived and mistaken. Life consists not in living, but in enjoying health.
      - Epigrams (bk. VI) [Life]

While an ant was wandering under the shade of the tree of Phaeton, a drop of amber enveloped the tiny insect; thus she, who in life was disregarded, became precious by death.
      - Epigrams (bk. VI, ep. 15) [Ants]

My suit has nothing to do with the assault, or battery, or poisoning, but is about three goats, which, I complain, have been stolen by my neighbor. This the judge desires to have proved to him; but you, with swelling words and extravagant gestures, dilate on the Battle of Cannae, the Mithridatic war, and the perjuries of the insensate Carthaginians, the Syllae, the Marii, and the Mucii. It is time, Postumus, to say something about my three goats.
      - Epigrams (bk. VI, ep. 19) [Judges]

When your crowd of attendants so loudly applaud you, Pomponius, it is not you, but your banquet, that is eloquent.
      - Epigrams (bk. VI, ep. 48) [Eloquence]

You manufacture, with the aid of unguents, a false head of hair, and your bald and dirty skull is covered with dyed locks. There is no need to have a hairdresser for your head. A sponge, Phoebus, would do the business better.
      - Epigrams (bk. VI, ep. 57) [Hair]

Can the fish love the fisherman?
  [Lat., Piscatorem piscis amare potest?]
      - Epigrams (bk. VI, ep. 63, l. 5)
        [Fish : Fishermen]

You are sad in the midst of every blessing. Take care that Fortune does not observe--or she will call you ungrateful.
      - Epigrams (bk. VI, ep. 79) [Fortune]

Annius has some two hundred tables, and servants for every table. Dishes run hither and thither, and plates fly about. Such entertainments as these keep to yourselves, ye pompous; I am ill pleased with a supper that walks.
      - Epigrams (bk. VII, ep. 48) [Eating]

You importune me, Tucca, to present you with my books. I shall not do so; for you want to sell, not to read, them.
      - Epigrams (bk. VII, ep. 77) [Books]

I pleaded your cause, Sextus, having agreed to do so for two thousand sesterces. How is it that you have sent me only a thousand? "You said nothing," you tell me; "and this cause was lost through you." You ought to give me so much the more, Sextus, as I had to blush for you.
      - Epigrams (bk. VIII, ep. 18) [Judges]

I seem to you cruel and too much addicted to gluttony, when I beat my cook for sending up a bad dinner. If that appears to you too trifling a cause, say for what cause you would have a cook flogged.
      - Epigrams (bk. VIII, ep. 23) [Cookery]

He who writes distichs, wishes, I suppose, to please by brevity. But, tell me, of what avail is their brevity, when there is a whose book full of them?
      - Epigrams (bk. VIII, ep. 29) [Authorship]

You admire, Vacerra, only the poets of old and praise only those who are dead. Pardon me, I beseech you, Vacerra, if I think death too high a price to pay for your praise.
      - Epigrams (bk. VIII, ep. 49) [Poets]

Our page (i.e. our book) has reference to man.
  [Lat., Hominem pagina nostra sapit.]
      - Epigrams (bk. X, 4, 10) [Man]

Why, simpleton, do you mix your verses with mine? What have you to do, foolish man, with writings that convict you of theft? Why do you attempt to associate foxes with lions, and make owls pass for eagles? Though you had one of Ladas's legs, you would not be able, blockhead, to run with the other leg of wood.
      - Epigrams (bk. X, ep. 100) [Plagiarism]

Your seventh wife, Phileros, is now being buried in your field. No man's field brings him greater profit than yours, Phileros.
      - Epigrams (bk. X, ep. 43) [Graves]

You put fine dishes on your table, Olus, but you always put them on covered. This is ridiculous; in the same way I could put fine dished on my table.
      - Epigrams (bk. X, ep. 54) [Epigrams]

You collect your straggling hairs on each side, Marinus, endeavoring to conceal the vast expanse of your shining bald pate by the locks which still grow on your temples. But the hairs disperse and return to their own place with every gust of wind; flanking you bare poll on either side with crude tufts. We might imagine we saw Hermeros of Cydas standing between Speudophorus and Telesphorus. Why not confess yourself an old man? Be content to seem what you really are, and let the barber shave off the rest of your hair. There is nothing more contemptible than a bald man who pretends to have hair.
      - Epigrams (bk. X, ep. 83) [Hair]

And have you been able, Flaccus, to see the slender Thais? Then, Flaccus, I suspect you can see what is invisible.
      - Epigrams (bk. XI, ep. 101) [Epigrams]

You ask for lively epigrams, and propose lifeless subjects. What can I do, Caecilianus? You expect Hyblaen or Hymethian honey to be produced, and yet offer the Attic bee nothing but Corsican thyme?
      - Epigrams (bk. XI, ep. 42) [Epigrams]


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