Marcus Aurelius (Haines 1916)

For other English-language translations of this work, see Meditations.

THE LOEB CLASSICAL LIBRARY

EDITED BY

E. CAPPS, Ph.D., LL.D. T. E. PAGE, Litt.D. W. H. D. ROUSE, Litt.D.

 

MARCUS AURELIUS
ANTONINUS

 

Marco aurelio e barbaros - museus capitolinos.jpg

RECEIVING GERMAN PRISONERS IN THE FIELD.
PANEL FROM TRIUMPHAL ARCH

 

NOTE ON ILLUSTRATION

This is one of twelve panels from the Triumphal Arch of Marcus, erected on the Capitol in 176 in honour of the double conquest of Germans and Sarmatians. It represents two German captives brought in by a praetorian guard. They are begging the Emperor's mercy, which the protective gesture of his hand shews is being granted. The face of Marcus is grave and sad. Behind him appears the praetorian prefect, Bassaeus Rufus. The composition of the work is fine and effective. This panel with others was taken from the Church of Santa Martina on the Capitol in 1525 and is now preserved on the first landing of the Palace of the Conservatori at Rome.

 

THE COMMUNINGS WITH HIMSELF OF
MARCUS AURELIUS
ANTONINUS

EMPEROR OF ROME

TOGETHER WITH HIS SPEECHES AND SAYINGS

 

A REVISED TEXT AND A TRANSLATION
INTO ENGLISH BY

C. R. HAINES, M.A., F.S.A.

 
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LONDON : WILLIAM HEINEMANN
NEW YORK : G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS

MCMXVI

 

ΕΙΣ ΒΙΒΛΟΝ ΜΑΡΚΟΥ[1]

Εἰ λύπης κρατέειν ἐθέλεις,
τήνδε μάκαιραν ἀναπτύσσων
βίβλον ἐπέρχεο ἐνδθκέως,
ἧς ὑπὸ γνώμην ὀλβίστην
ῥεῖά κεν ὄψεαι ἐσσομένων
ὄντων τ᾽ ἠδὲ παροιχομένων
τερπωλήν τ᾽ ἀνίην τε <λέγων>
καπνοῦ μηδὲν ἀρειοτέρην.

If thou would'st master care and pain,
Unfold this book and read and read again
Its blessed leaves, whereby thou soon shalt see
The past, the present, and the days to be
With opened eyes; and all delight, all grief,
Shall be like smoke, as empty and as brief.

C. R. H.

Μόνος βασιλέων φιλοσοφίαν οὐ λόγοις οὔτε δογμάτων γνώσεσι, σεμνῷ δὲ ἤθει καὶ σωφρόνι βίῳ ἐπιστώσατο.—Herodian, i. 2, § 4.

Οὐδὲν αὐτὸν ἐξεβιάσατο ἔξω τι τῶν ἑαυτοῦ ἠθῶν πρᾶξαι.—Dio Cassius 71. 30, § 2.

Ὁ λογισμὸς αὐτοῦ θεῖος καὶ ὡς ἀληθῶς ἄνωθεν ἔχων τὸ παράδειγμα καὶ πρὸς ἐκείνην ὁρῶν τὴν πολιτείαν.—Aristides, Paneg. in Cyz. § 427 (Jebb).


  1. This epigram is found at the end of the Vatican MS. and also in the Anthologia Palatina, ii. p. 603 (Jacobs). Possibly by Arethas (see P. Maas in Hermes xlviii. p. 295 ff. ).

 

PREFACE

The Greek text of this book is often difficult and in many places corrupt beyond cure, but no trouble has been spared to make the translation as accurate and idiomatic as possible. I have preferred to err, if error it be, on the side of over-faithfulness, because the physiognomy of the book owes so much to the method and style in which it is written. Its homeliness, abruptness, and want of literary finish (though it does not lack rhetoric) are part of the character of the work, and we alter this character by rewriting it into the terse, epigrammatic, staccato style so much in vogue at the present day. Another reason for literalness is that it makes a comparison with the Greek, printed beside it, easier for the unlearned. When a work has been translated so often as this one, it is difficult to be original without deviating further from the text, but I have not borrowed a phrase, scarcely a word, from any of my predecessors. If unconscious coincidences appear, it remains only to say Pereant qui ante nos nostra dixerint! Numerous references (such as have proved so invaluable for the due understanding of the Bible) and good indices have always been greatly wanted in the translations of this work, and I have taken pains to supply the want. For a better understanding of the character of Marcus I have added to the Thoughts translations of his Speeches and Sayings, with a Note on his attitude towards the Christians (in which I am glad to find myself in complete agreement with M. Lemercier). A companion volume on the Correspondence with Fronto will contain all his extant Letters. In conclusion my best thanks are due to Messrs. Teubner for permission to use their text as the basis of the revised one here printed, to Professors Leopold and Schenkl for advice and help on various points, and, last but not least, to my predecessors in the translation of this "Golden Book."

C. R. HAINES.

Godlaming, 1915.

PRINTED IN GREAT BRITAIN BY
Richard Clay and Sons, Limited,
BRUNSWICK STREET, STAMFORD STREET, S.E.
AND BUNGAY, SUFFOLK.


Copyright.svg PD-icon.svg This work is a translation and has a separate copyright status to the applicable copyright protections of the original content.
Original:

This work was published before January 1, 1925, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

 
Translation:

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1925.


The author died in 1935, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.