The Carmina of Caius Valerius Catullus, by Catullus


Siquoi quid cupido optantique obtigit umquam

Insperanti, hoc est gratum animo proprie.

Quare hoc est gratum nobisque est carius auro,

Quod te restituis, Lesbia, mi cupido,

Restituis cupido atque insperanti ipsa refers te. 5

Nobis o lucem candidiore nota!

Quis me uno vivit felicior, aut magis hac res

Optandas vita dicere quis poterit?


To Lesbia Reconciled.

An to one ever accrue any boon he lusted and longed for

Any time after despair, grateful it comes to his soul.

Thus ’tis grateful to us nor gold was ever so goodly,

When thou restorest thyself (Lesbia!) to lovingmost me,

Self thou restorest unhoped, and after despair thou returnest. 5

Oh the fair light of a Day noted with notabler white!

Where lives a happier man than myself or — this being won me —

Who shall e’er boast that his life brought him more coveted lot?

If what one desires and covets is ever obtained unhoped for, this is specially grateful to the soul. Wherefore is it grateful to us and far dearer than gold, that thou com’st again, Lesbia, to longing me; com’st yet again, long-looked for and unhoped, thou restorest thyself. O day of whiter note for us! who lives more happily than I, sole I, or who can say what greater thing than this could be hoped for in life?

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:52