Maecenas, risen from royal ancestors,
oh, my guardian and my sweet glory,
there are those who it pleases to produce Olympic dust in a
chariot having avoided the turning post
with fiery wheels, and the noble palm
carries them, like masters of the world, to the gods.
It pleases this man, if a crowd of fickle citizens
elect to lift (him) up with triple offices;
it pleases that one, if he stores up in his own granary
whatever is culled from the Libyan threshing floor.
You must never remove he who rejoices to cleave
his father’s fields with a hoe thanks to Attalus' covenant,
in order that he might cleave the Myrtoan sea with a Cyprian beam
as a trembling sailor.
A merchant fearing the African wind
wrestling the Icarian sea praises leisure and
the fields of his own town; soon he repairs the battered
ships, not taught to suffer poverty.
There is he who spurns taking away neither the the cup of old Massic wine
nor the parts of a whole day
now stretching out his limbs under a green tree,
now by the gentle head of a sacred stream.
Encampments please many, and the varied
sounds of the curved trumpet, and war,
detested by mothers. The hunter remains below the frigid sky
forgetful of his tender wife,
whether a deer is seen by his faithful little dogs,
or a Marsian boar ruptures the smooth nets.
The ivy, the reward of the learned brow,
mixes me with the gods above, the cool grove
and the light choruses of the Nymphs with the Satyrs
separate me from the people, if Euterpe
does not hold back the flutes and Polyhymnia
doesn't flee from extending the lyre of Lesbos.
But if you will insert me among the lyric poets,
I will strike the high stars with my head.
Maecenas atavis edite regibus,
o et praesidium et dulce decus meum,
sunt quos curriculo pulverem Olympicum
collegisse iuvat metaque fervidis
evitata rotis palmaque nobilis
terrarum dominos evehit ad deos;
hunc, si mobilium turba Quiritium
certat tergeminis tollere honoribus;
illum, si proprio condidit horreo
quidquid de Libycis verritur areis.
Gaudentem patrios findere sarculo
agros Attalicis condicionibus
numquam demoveas, ut trabe Cypria
Myrtoum pavidus nauta secet mare.
luctantem Icariis fluctibus Africum
mercator metuens otium et oppidi
laudat rura sui; mox reficit rates
quassas, indocilis pauperiem pati.
Est qui nec veteris pocula Massici
spernit, nunc viridi membra sub arbuto
nec partem solido demere de die
stratus, nunc ad aquae lene caput sacrae.
Multos castra iuvant et lituo tubae
permixtus sonitus bellaque matribus
detestata. Manet sub Iove frigido
venator tenerae coniugis inmemor,
seu visa est catulis cerva fidelibus,
seu rupit teretis Marsus aper plagas.
Me doctarum hederae praemia frontium
dis miscent superis, me gelidum nemus
Nympharumque leves cum Satyris chori
secernunt populo, si neque tibias
Euterpe cohibet nec Polyhymnia
Lesboum refugit tener barbiton.
Quod si me lyricis vatibus inseres,
sublimi feriam sidera vertice.