Translation from English

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Roman Gravestone Poem- A.Z. Foreman- Poems Found in Translation

Poems Found In Translation: “Paulus Silentiarius: Epigramma Interruptum (From Greek)”

Link to Poems Found in Translation

Posted: 29 Dec 2014 04:13 PM PST
The tropes of epitaphic verse had apparently become so commonplace as a genre by the 6th century, that, like all clichés, they eventually invited the wit of the parodist.  

Epigramma Interruptum
By Paulus Silentiarius
Translated by A.Z. Foreman

My name is...(do we care?) And my birthplace
Was....(seriously, who cares at all?) I come
From noble lineage that I can trace
To great...(and what if all of them were scum?)
I ended life in good repute (would we
Care if you quit this world in infamy?)
And now in death I lie beneath this tomb
(Wait...who is speaking, really? And to whom?)

The Original:

Ἐπίγραμμα
Παῦλος ὁ Σιλεντιάριος

᾽Οὔνομά μοι … «Τί δὲ τοῦτο;» Πατρίς δὲ μοι … «Ἐς τί δὲ τοῦτο;»
Κλεινοῦ δ’ εἰμὶ γένους. «Εἰ γὰρ ἀφαυροτάτου;»
Ζήσας δ’ ἐνδόξως ἔλιπον βίον. «Εἰ γὰρ ἀδόξως;»
Κεῖμαι δ’ ἐνθάδε νῦν. «Τίς τίνι ταῦτα λέγεις;»