Christopher Marlowe, Ovid [Publius Ovidius Naso]

Roma Gill (ed.), The Complete Works of Christopher Marlowe, Vol. 1: All Ovids Elegies, Lucans First Booke, Dido Queene of Carthage, Hero and Leander

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Ad Aurorem ne properet.
  • Editor’s Note1Now ore the sea from her old Love comes she
  • 2That drawes the day from heavens cold axletree.
  • 3Aurora whither slidest thou? downe againe
  • Editor’s Note4And birdes from Memnon yearely shal be slaine.
  • 5Now in her tender armes I sweetly bide
  • 6If ever, now well lies she by my side.
  • 7The aire is cold, and sleepe is sweetest now
  • 8And birdes send forth shrill notes from every bough:
  • 9Whither runst thou, that men, and women love not?
  • 10Hold in thy rosy horses that they move not.
  • 11Ere thou rise, starres teach sea-men where to saile
  • 12But when thou commest they of their courses faile.
  • 13Poore travailers though tierd, rise at thy sight,
  • 14And souldiours make them ready to the fight.
  • 15The painefull hinde by thee to field is sent,
  • 16Slowe Oxen early in the yoake are pent.
  • 17Thou cousenst boyes of sleepe, and doest betray them
  • Critical Apparatus18To Pedants that with cruell lashes pay them.
  • 19Thou mak'st the surety to the Lawyer runne,
  • 20That with one word hath nigh himselfe undone.
  • pg 3221The Lawyer and the client hate thy view,
  • Critical Apparatus22Both whom thou raisest up to toyle anew.
  • 23By thy meanes women of their rest are bard,
  • 24Thou setst their labouring hands to spin and card.
  • 25All could I beare, but that the wench should rise,
  • 26Who can endure save him with whom none lyes?
  • 27How oft wisht I, night would not give thee place,
  • 28Nor morning starres shunne thy uprising face.
  • 29How oft that either winde would breake thy coach,
  • 30Or steeds might fall forc'd with thick clouds approach.
  • 31Whether goest thou hatefull Nimph? Memnon the elfe
  • 32Receiv'd his cole-black colour from thy selfe.
  • Editor’s Note33Say that thy love with Cephalus were not knowne,
  • 34Then thinkest thou thy loose life is not showne.
  • 35Would Tithon might but talke of thee a while,
  • 36Not one in heaven should be more base and vile.
  • 37Thou leavest his bed, because hee's faint through age,
  • 38And early mountest thy hatefull carriage.
  • 39But heldst thou in thine armes some Cephalus,
  • 40Then wouldst thou cry, stay night and runne not thus.
  • 41Doest punish me, because yeares make him waine?
  • 42I did not bid thee wed an aged swaine.
  • Editor’s Note43The Moone sleepes with Endymion every day,
  • 44Thou art as faire as she, then kisse and play.
  • 45Jove that thou shouldst not hast but waite his leasure,
  • Editor’s Note46Made two nights one to finish up his pleasure.
  • Editor’s Note47I chid no more, she blusht and therefore heard me
  • Editor’s Note48Yet lingered not the day, but morning scard me.

Notes Settings


Editor’s Note
1 her old Love] Tithonus, son of Laomedon, King of Troy. He begged Aurora for the gift of immortality, which she granted for love of his beauty. But he neglected to ask for the continuance of this beauty and his youth, and consequently grew old. In response to his pleas for death, which she could not satisfy, the goddess changed him into a cicada.
Editor’s Note
4 Memnon] The son of Aurora and Tithonus, who became King of Ethiopia. He was killed during the Trojan War, when he came to assist his uncle, Priam, and his mother was so distressed at his death that she asked Jupiter to grant her son such honours as might distinguish him from other mortals. Jupiter consented, and from the funeral pyre issued a flight of birds which fought among themselves so fiercely that half of them were killed and fell into the fire to appease the spirit of Memnon. Every year the birds return to the tomb and repeat the sacrifice. (Metamorphoses, xiii. 583–619). In this line Mason reads 'from', and Dyce emends to 'for'. On the surface, this seems sensible; but since the birds both arose from the funeral pyre and were sacrificed to Aurora's son, they were in fact both 'from' and 'for' Memnon. The Latin allows for either interpretation.
Critical Apparatus
I. xiii 18 Pedants] Pedants
Critical Apparatus
22 them] then Mason
Editor’s Note
33 Cephalus] Cephalus, husband of Procris. Aurora fell in love with him and abducted him, but he refused to accept her advances, and insisted on returning to his wife. Modern editors of Ovid see these two lines as an interpolation, and exclude them, arguing that Ovid would not have thus anticipated the thought in lines 39–40.
Editor’s Note
43 The Moone sleepes with Endymion] The shepherd Endymion persuaded Jupiter to grant him eternal youth and as much sleep as he wanted. Diana caught sight of him, naked, as he slept on Mt Latmos, and was so taken by his beauty that she came down from heaven every day to share his sleep. Ovid is oblique in his reference to iuveni … amato, but Marlowe is tactfully explicit in this line, which seems to have been remembered by Shakespeare in The Merchant of Venice: 'the Moon sleeps with Endymion, And would not be awak'd' (v. i. 108).
Editor’s Note
46 Made two nights one] Jupiter got possession of Alcmena's bed by impersonating her husband, Amphitryon. He greatly prolonged the night which he spent in the procreation of Hercules, who was to be the most famous of mortal heroes.
Editor’s Note
47 and therefore heard me] scires audisse.
Editor’s Note
48 morning scard me] Marlowe's addition to Ovid.
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