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From the proposal:

The second manuscript will be written in Latin, focusing on a lyric poem from Horace’s Odes. This particular piece ( describes the author’s poetry as being more solid and lasting than a physical monument, a great claim for the citizen of a nation known for its architectural marvels. In this way, it emphasizes the monumental, essentially three-dimensional, quality of the written word. This page will be illuminated with what is most commonly called the high medieval style, with the incorporation of ancient Roman art forms for emphasis: in particular, the Second—or Architectural—Pompeiian style of painting, which relies strongly on illusionistic architectural forms, will be useful to this end. The high medieval style is characterized by lavish, unmixed jewel-tone paints which earned that name from being made of powdered gems such as azurite, malachite, and most precious of all, lapis lazuli. Gold leaf was also used liberally for accents. The poem itself will likely be written using the Early Gothic bookhand, popular from the 11th to the 12th centuries, and possibly employing Roman Square Capitals for stress. The poem may be supplemented with interlinear translations in English; glosses, complementary quotations from other authors, and colophons expressing my own thoughts could be placed in the margins; and portions of the texts could even be treated as an antiphonal, providing musical notes as a visual reminder of the lyric poem’s truly rhapsodic elements.

Horace, Odes,

Exegi monumentum aere perennius

Regalique situ pyramidum altius,

Quod non imber edax, non Aquilo impotens

Possit diruere aut innumerabilis

Annorum series et fuga temporum.

Non omnis moriar, multaque pars mei

Vitabit Libitinam: usque ego postera

Crescam laude recens, dum Capitolium

Scandet cum tacita virgine pontifex.

Dicar, qua violens obstrepit Aufidus

Et qua pauper aquae Daunus agrestium

Regnavit populorum, ex humili potens

Princeps Aeolium carmen ad Italos

Deduxisse modos. Sume superbiam

Quaesitam meritis et mihi Delphica

Lauro cinge volens, Melpomene, comam.


A monument, more durable than brass

And higher than the pyramids that stand

Laid out for kings, I’ve built with pen in hand,

Which neither greedy rain nor frantic thrash

Of wind can overthrow, nor flights of years

Unnumbered, nor the seasons’ gyring gears.

I shall not wholly die, but cheat the lash

Of Death in greater part: for future tongues

Shall cultivate my praise, as long as vestal

Maid and priest ascend the Capitol

In silence. I’ll be heard, my praises sung,

Both where the rapid Aufid river roars,

And where king Daunus, from his sapless shores,

Once ruled a rustic tribe: though I am sprung

From Apulian clay, yet I command

Great power in my prime: I was the first

To bend to Roman measure Grecian verse.

With conscious pride and honor, take upon

Yourself, Melpomene, the glory thine

That I have earned, and graciously entwine

My brow with verdant Delphi’s laurel strands.

Verse translation ©2000 Julie C. Sparks.