Poem about Statius

Publius Papinius Statius (c. 45—c. 96) was a Roman poet of the 1st century AD. His surviving Latin poetry includes an epic in twelve books, the Thebaid; a collection of occasional poems, the Silvae; and an unfinished epic, the Achilleid. I terms of chronology, Statius belongs to the Silver Age of Latin poetry. As such, his Silver Epic verses are delightful in every way, but they just don't quite rise to the level of Virgil.

This little quatrain was discovered by me in Allusion and Intertext: Dynamics of Appropriation in Roman Poetry by Stephen Hinds. I think that these lines are absolutely beautiful. Many will, of course, disagree.

Statius wrote down the line, then scratched it out,
And scratched his head, and sat a while in doubt,
But wrote it down again a little later,
And said, 'Not bad, though, for a second-rater.'

(Louis MacKay)

  • #latin language
  • #poetry