Roman Love &c.

6Roman Love 😀 Let’s b Wild9


For Latin usage in Academic English including using: et al., ibid, op. sit etc., click here

&c. — (et cetera) = …and other things.

et al. — (et alii) = and others, used especially in referring to academic books or articles that have more than one author.

n.b., — (nota bene) = pay special attention to something.

… Because here, we shall focus on the four letter word (n.b., it’s not the ‘F word):

amor vincit omnia

“love conquers all”
* Inscribed on a bracelet worn by the Prioress in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales; and is originally from Virgil, Eclogues, 10, 69: omnia vincit amor: et nos cedamus amori (“love conquers all: let us too surrender to love”).


nunc scio quid sit amor

“now I know what love is”
* From Virgil, Eclogues, VIII.


nunc scio quid sit amor

“I hate and I love”
* The opening of Catullus 85; the entire poem reads, “odi et amo quare id faciam fortasse requiris / nescio sed fieri sentio et excrucior” (I hate and I love. Why do I do this, you perhaps ask. / I do not know, but I feel it happening to me and I am burning up.)


quos amor verus tenuit tenebit

“Those whom true love has held, it will go on holding”
* by Seneca


ubi amor, ibi dolor

— “where [there is] love, there [is] pain”


requiescat in pace

* R.I.P. “may he/she rest in peace.” Used as a short prayer for a dead person, frequently found on tombstones.


As Roman poet Sextus Propertius said:

Sine sensu vivere amantis, et levibus curis magna perire bona

— “Lovers live without sense and, great affairs perish because of petty concerns.”

I’ll end by focusing on Propertius a little bit. He was born around 50–45 BC and is thought to have died in around 16 BC. He was a contemporary of and friend of the poets Catullus and Virgil. I’ll focus on him because these following quotes are attributed to him:

Love can be put off, never abandoned.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Afflicted by love’s madness all are blind.

Propertius is known today for around 100 poems penned in the elegiac couplet. Like the work of nearly all the elegists, Propertius’ work is dominated by the figure of a single woman: Cynthia (which was/is a pseudonym)

Cynthia prima suis miserum me cepit ocellis / contactum nullis ante cupidinibus.

Cynthia first captivated wretched me with her eyes / I who had never before been touched by Cupid.


p.s.
See too, Greek ‘n’ Roman love

Common oxymorons

…are they paradoxical?

  • Act naturally.
  • Alone together.
  • Amazingly awful.
  • Bittersweet.
  • Clearly confused.
  • Dark light.
  • Deafening silence.
  • Definitely maybe.

Oxymoron
A figure of speech in which apparently contradictory terms appear in conjunction (e.g. faith unfaithful kept him falsely true).


Paradox
1] a seemingly absurd or contradictory statement or proposition which when investigated may prove to be well founded or true.
2] a statement or proposition which, despite sound (or apparently sound) reasoning from acceptable premises, leads to a conclusion that seems logically unacceptable or self-contradictory.
3] a person or thing that combines contradictory features or qualities.


Black and White
Day & Night

‘Damned if you do,’

(and) damned if you don’t.

While some will know the meanings of these adages:

Damned if you do, damned if you don't
Damned if you do, damned if you don’t
(Caught/Stuck/Trapped) between the devil and the deep blue sea.
(Caught/Stuck/Trapped) between the devil and the deep blue sea.
Between a rock and a hard place.
Between a rock and a hard place.
If you are like me, you’ll not have known that they all stem from:

Being between Scylla and Charybdis

…an idiom deriving from Greek mythology (but doesn’t so much seem to stem from Ancient Greece?!?). Being stuck between Scylla and Charybdis informs the more recent proverbial advice, that is, “to choose the lesser of two evils.” This is true too for the saying, “on the horns of a dilemma.” But nowadays, phrases like: (1) “between the devil and the deep blue sea,” (2) “between a rock and a hard place” and (3), “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” imply both evils are as bad as each other. In essence these phrases now mean having to choose between two equally bad choices which both lead (almost categorically) to disaster. Is this the same as a Hobson’s choice, well yes I think so, see this post: Hobson’s choice, explained. (I mean, there really isn’t a choice is there, take the left fork and you’ll be screwed, take the right fork and you’ll be fucked (either, or, not in any pleasurable sense)).

“Britannia between Scylla and Charybdis.”
A satirical cartoon/sketch commenting on a British political dilemma of yesteryear.
Scylla and Charybdis were mythical sea monsters/dangers noted by Homer in the Iliad. Scylla was said to be a rock shoal (described as a six-headed sea monster) on one side of a Mediterranean strait and Charybdis was a whirlpool off the coast of the other side (they were regarded as maritime hazards located close enough to each other that they posed an inescapable threat to passing sailors)–would either mode of death be the lesser of two evils?

Are these, strictly speaking, allegories? Do they reveal a hidden meaning? Not really. Look here and decide if you agree of disagree: Allegorically speaking…

Anyway,

Now on to the point and purpose of this post:

I am damned if I do

because it was said to me

“If you love me, you’ll leave me the fuck alone”

and thus, by not contacting you, I am currently dying repeatedly on the inside; this occurs during every minute of every waking hour. Therefore, I am:

damned if I don’t.

Get me? Do you get what I’m saying to you my sweet succulent honey bee? I’m dead without you; you became and now are my:

raison d’être

/French noun/
— the most important reason or purpose for someone or something’s existence

‘Wax poetic’

= to speak or write about something in a poetic and/or overly exaggerated way

Fresco showing a woman holding writing implements (c. 50 AD)
Fresco showing a woman holding writing implements, a wax tablet and stylus. From Pompeii, c. 50 AD.
On wax……we’ve:

Wax lyrical
— To talk in a highly enthusiastic and effusive way (i.e, to wax poetic).
— “He waxed lyrical about his splendid and amazing mentor-cum-muse.”

Wax and wane
— To undergo alternate increases and decreases.
— “The ebb and flow of the ocean tides wax and wane but my love for you stays at a constant fever pitch.”

In terms of waxing poetically these other words come to mind:

Histrionics
— Melodramatic behaviour designed to attract attention.
— “By now, she was accustomed to to his hysterical histrionics.”

Verbose
— Using more words than are needed.
— “It is said that much academic language is obscure and verbose.”

Melodramatic
— Characteristic of melodrama, especially in being exaggerated or overemotional.
— “Dr Josē flung the door open with a melodramatic flourish.”

Exaggerate
— To represent (something) as being larger, better, or worse than it really is.

Drama queen
noun (informal)
— A person who habitually responds to situations in a melodramatic way.

Paint it black
I want everything to be painted black ⚫️

p.s.
Why not see these posts too:
‘Poetic license’
‘Poetic justice’

‘Poetic license’

= bending the rules to make one’s art more captivating.

Poetic Licence...?
Curse those giants’ shoulders! ****

Poetic license means the ‘license’ or ‘liberty’ taken by a poet, prose writer, or other artist in deviating from facts and genre conventions etc. so as to be able to produce more interesting and/or effective artwork.

For instance, we know that we should follow poetic rhyming conventions and syllable and stanza counts but sometimes, the message is more important than the mode so, we take the liberty of scrapping some of the rules every once in a while (see: “Sun, Sand &”).


p.s.
Why not see this post too: ‘Poetic justice’

**** Standing on the shoulders of giants.  This metaphor/phrase/idiom: ‘of dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants’ (Latin: nanos gigantum humeris insidentes) means, discovering truth by building on previous discoveries. This idea/notion has been traced to the 12th c. and is attributed to Bernard of Chartres. Famously, in 1675, Isaac Newton wrote the following, “if I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.”

Me, upon you.
I was carried by you, I was nestled upon your shoulders my dearest one.

‘Poetic justice’

has now been served

Poetic justice is a literary device in which ultimately virtue is rewarded and viciousness is punished. In current usage it is often accompanied by an ironic twist of fate related to the individual in question’s own actions and behaviour.

‘Getting a taste of one’s own medicine’

Typically medicine don’t taste nice. Thus, if you make people feel unappreciated, insecure, jealous and anxious, you’ve little right to complain if they turn around and do the same back to you.

‘What goes around, comes around’

Similarly, what goes around comes around, means that if you treat people badly, you can’t be too surprised if one day you find yourself being treated in that same kind of way.


Poetic justice
noun
The fact of experiencing a fitting or deserved retribution for one’s actions.

Retribution
noun
The punishment inflicted on someone as vengeance for their wrong doing or criminal actions.

Vengeance
noun
The punishment inflicted or retribution exacted for causing an injury or having done something wrong.

Virtue
noun
A form of behaviour showing high moral standards.

Vicious
adjective
To be deliberately cruel and/or violent.

‘By hook or by crook’

any means necessary

‘By hook or by crook’ is an English phrase meaning “by any means necessary”, suggesting that any means possible should be taken to accomplish a goal. The phrase is old and the first currently known written instance of it is the Middle English Controversial Tracts of John Wycliffe.

Do what you have to do
Do what you have to do

One way, or another, I’m gunna gunna get ya


John Wycliffe (c. 1323–1384) was an English scholastic philosopher, theologian, reformer and a professor at the University of Oxford. He became an influential dissident within the Roman Catholic priesthood during the 14th c. and is considered an important predecessor to Protestantism.

Hook / Crook
^ Look at how they spell John.