The Carmina of Caius Valerius Catullus, by Catullus


Nascatur magus ex Gelli matrisque nefando

Coniugio et discat Persicum aruspicium:

Nam magus ex matre et gnato gignatur oportet,

Si verast Persarum inpia relligio,

Navos ut accepto veneretur carmine divos 5

Omentum in flamma pingue liquefaciens.


On Gellius.

Born be a Magus, got by Gellius out of his mother

(Marriage nefand!) who shall Persian augury learn.

Needs it a Magus begot of son upon mother who bare him,

If that impious faith, Persian religion be fact,

So may their issue adore busy gods with recognised verses 5

Melting in altar-flame fatness contained by the caul.

Let there be born a Magian from the infamous conjoining of Gellius and his mother, and he shall learn the Persian aruspicy. For a Magian from a mother and son must needs be begotten, if there be truth in Persia’s vile creed that one may worship with acceptable hymn the assiduous gods, whilst the caul’s fat in the sacred flame is melting.

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