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portant Berne MS., ignores the division into Books, and to some extent rearranges the Odes; but we may notice (a) that the Fourth Book (which certainly was separate), and even the Epodes, are treated in the same way as the Odes of Books i-iii; (6) that a purpose can be probably assigned for the rearrangement; (c) that if we deduct the variation caused by this purpose, the order in which the Odes are placed bears distinct witness in favour of the common arrangement'. Diomedes, the writer on metre (who is quoted by Priscian, and therefore cannot be later than the fifth century), refers to the Odes by their present numbering.
§ 11. It has also a considerable amount of internal evidence, in the testimony (distinct as far as it goes, even if it do not prove much) of Book iv ;-in the general analogy of Horace's other collections of poems ;-and in many indications of design (or at least of mind at work in the disposition), which on the one hand are inconsistent with the theory of a haphazard redivision of a mass of poems whose original arrangement had been lost, and which on the other, in several points, suit well with known characteristics of Horace's taste.
1. Few can doubt that the references in the First Ode of Book iv to 1. 19 and 3. 26, imply that these Odes must have stood in Horace's disposition pretty much where they do now, as one of the earliest and the latest of his love Odes.
2. Some kind of conscious arrangement, subsequent to composition and not chronological, is obvious on the face of the Epodes, the Satires, and the Epistles. If there is nothing else, there is the manifest choice of an opening poem, not usually it would seem, if ever, earliest in date of composition?, an apology for the style of writing as in Sat. ii, or a quasi-dedicatory address to his patron as in the Epodes, Sat. i, and both Books of Epistles. The analogy between Odes i-iii and Epp. i is closer still, in the assignment of the first place and the last but one 1 See the account of the Berne MS. in the General Introduction.
Epod. 1, if it refers, as is most probable, to Actium, is one of the two latest in the collection. Epp. 1. i and Sat. 1. I are generally placed among the last compositions in their respective Books.
to Maecenas (Od. 1. i and 3. 29, Epp. I. I and 19), while the last in both cases (Od. 3. 30, Epp. 1. 20) is reserved for the poet's own literary self-consciousness ?.
The Fourth Book of the Odes stands apart from other collections in that the greater part at least of it was notoriously composed with a purpose; and therefore the plan of arrangement may have been antecedent to the composition. But if this difference must make us cautious in drawing sweeping conclusions as to the other Books from the obviously conscious and artistic arrangementof Book iv, we may at least gather that Horace contemplated a collection of poems being read continuously in such a way that the effect of a particular poem could be heightened or weakened by the sequence in which it was placed ; and we may learn something also of the principles of taste which would be likely to guide him in arranging other collections.
3. A marked feature of Horace's style is the irony with which he professes to shrink from enthusiasm, to be the poet of mirth and love, 'non praeter solitum levis,' surprised, it may be, occasionally into serious subjects, but recovering himself before he has done injury to a theme for which he is unfits. It is this irony as much as the mere desire for variety that makes him scatter his political poems at such wide intervals. It is this, as we shall see, that colours the prelude to Book iv; and though the relation between 1. I and 1. 2 is not worked out so fully as that between 4. 1, 2, 3 and 4. 4, 5, it is substantially the
Od. 1. I has of course a relation to the whole three Books ; but it is not an accident that a poem, in which his political faith is set forth most fully, should follow immediately
1 For an additional argument for the designedness of the position of 3. 29, see the correspondence noticed on 1. I. I and 3. 29. I, between the opening address in the two Odes, bearing in mind that if 1. I was written for its place it must almost certainly have been posterior in composition to 3. 29. 2 See this drawn out in Introd. Book iv.
Cp. the form of Od. 1, 6, 2. 12, 4. 2, and the last stanza of 2. I
and 3. 3.
on his opening apology for verse-writing as a taste not more unaccountable than the thousand others that divide mankind.
On its artistic side,—that is where it affects his manner as a principle of taste, rather than as a characteristic of his own feelings or a prudential consideration of the judgment of the world,—this irony is nearly connected with another feature of his style which will be noticed on 2. 19 (Introd. and on v. 31), 3. 5. 56, and 4. 2. 57 : I mean his affectation, in poems where we have been wrought higher than usual, of a rather dull, even conventional, ending, as though the passion ought to die away in a diminuendo before the strain ceases. When we are looking for exemplifications of either of these feelings in the position of a particular Ode, we must remember that they may pass again by shades hard to define into the mere sense of the relief afforded by contrast, an unwillingness to dwell too long on any one note. An instance, where we cannot doubt an artistic purpose
in the juxtaposition, and where this purpose seems to hesitate between the first and second feeling which we have traced, is to be seen in 1. 37, 38, where we must notice that the slight Ode, with its picture of simplicity and lightheartedness, stands at the end of a long Book as well as immediately after the high-pitched Ode on Cleopatra.
Instances where we may see certainly the love of variety, very possibly an undertone of irony, are the position of 'Quum tu Lydia Telephi,' after 1. 12, and that of 'Quid files, Asterie ?' after the stately Odes that begin Book iii. The mere desire to change the key is well exemplified in 1, 24, 25 and 3. 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29.
4. If 1. 38 has a fitness at the end of a Book, we may note a similar fitness for their place in 2, 20 and 3. 1. The adaptation indeed of these two Odes to their position was doubtless what suggested the now abandoned theory of a separate publication of Books i, ii, and Book iii. That theory can really derive no support from them, for it would necessitate, as we have seen, an entire rearrangement of the Odes in a chronological order, in the course of which all evidence would dis
INTRODUCTION TO THE ODES, BOOKS 1–111.
appear of the position of these two Odes as well as of all the others.
5. The hand of a conscious arranger must surely be seen in the fact that Odes 1-9 of Book i contain, with three exceptions, one of which is made good in the 11th Ode, representatives of all the metres employed in the Three Books. We may compare with this the obviously metrical disposition of the Epodes 1-10, 11-16, 17, and the regular alternation of Alcaics and Sapphics through more than half of Book ii of the Odes.
6. Where definite contrasts are not required, we may see from time to time in the selection the working of the opposite principle of association, sometimes in a general similarity of subject as between 2. 13, 14; 3. 9-12 : sometimes in some accidental phrase or thought which seems to recall another poem to the arranger, and guide his hand to it, as in 1. 17, where Cyrus' tipsy brawls seem to suggest the Ode which follows on the moderate use of wine; 1. 34, where the mention of Fortune, even though in a different sense or point of view, is a link to the following Ode to Fortuna Antias ; 3. 17, where the invitation to keep holiday, with which the Ode ends, suggests the special holiday picture of the Faunalia in 3. 18.
Q. HORATII FLACCI
MAECENAS atavis edite regibus,