The Carmina of Caius Valerius Catullus, by Catullus


Cinaede Thalle, mollior cuniculi capillo

Vel anseris medullula vel imula oricilla

Vel pene languido senis situque araneoso,

Idemque Thalle turbida rapacior procella,

Cum diva munerarios ostendit oscitantes, 5

Remitte pallium mihi meum, quod involasti,

Sudariumque Saetabum catagraphosque Thynos,

Inepte, quae palam soles habere tamquam avita.

Quae nunc tuis ab unguibus reglutina et remitte,

Ne laneum latusculum manusque mollicellas 10

Inusta turpiter tibi flagella conscribillent,

Et insolenter aestues velut minuta magno

Deprensa navis in mari vesaniente vento.


Address to Thallus the Napery-Thief.

Thou bardache Thallus! more than Coney’s robe

Soft, or goose-marrow or ear’s lowmost lobe,

Or Age’s languid yard and cobweb’d part,

Same Thallus greedier than the gale thou art,

When the Kite-goddess shows thee Gulls agape, 5

Return my muffler thou hast dared to rape,

Saetaban napkins, tablets of Thynos, all

Which (Fool!) ancestral heirlooms thou didst call.

These now unglueing from thy claws restore,

Lest thy soft hands, and floss-like flanklets score 10

The burning scourges, basely signed and lined,

And thou unwonted toss like wee barque tyned

‘Mid vasty Ocean vexed by madding wind!

O Thallus the catamite, softer than rabbit’s fur, or goose’s marrow, or lowmost ear-lobe, limper than the drooping penis of an oldster, in its cobwebbed must, greedier than the driving storm, such time as the Kite–Goddess shews us the gaping Gulls, give me back my mantle which thou hast pilfered, and the Saetaban napkin and Thynian tablets which, idiot, thou dost openly parade as though they were heirlooms. These now unglue from thy nails and return, lest the stinging scourge shall shamefully score thy downy flanks and delicate hands, and thou unwonted heave and toss like a tiny boat surprised on the vasty sea by a raging storm.

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