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Envocation to Priapus: 19th Century Engraving of a Bas-Relief from Pompeii


sive diversorum poetarum in Priapum lusus



by divers poets in English verse and prose

translation by Leonard C. Smithers and Sir Richard Burton


Epigrams  Notes
First Lines

Title Page
A Word to the Reader


To the Reader
1. In play, Priapus (thou canst testify)
2. Darkly might I to thee say: Oh give me for ever and ever
3. These tablets, sacred to the Rigid God
4. All the conditions (they say) Priapus made with the youngling
5. Though I be wooden Priapus (as thou see'st)
6. Oft in my speech one letter is lost; for Predicate always
7. Matrons avoid this site, for your chaste breed
8. 'Why be my parts obscene displayed without cover?' thou askest
9. Why laugh such laughter, O most silly maid?
10. 'Ware of my catching! If caught, with rod I never will harm thee
11. A she (than Hector's parent longer aged,
12. Thou shalt be pedicate (lad!), thou also (lass!) shalt be rogered
13. Here' Here! nor dare expect (whoe'er thou be)
14. Charged to my charge the fieldlet who shall dare
15. Rare as those apples wherewith Hippomenes Schoeneïs ravished
16. What hast thou, meddling watch, with me to do?
17. Aye in this prickle of ours the bonniest boon to be found is
18. Will ever Telethusa, posture-mime
19. Thunders are under Jove; with the trident weaponed is Neptune
20. Wealth is my loss! Do thou vouchsafe lend aid to my prayer,
21. An fro' me woman shall thieve or plunder me man or a man-child,
22. Whoso of violets here shall pluck or rose,
23. Here has the bailiff, now of this plentiful garden the guardian,
24. This staff of office cut from tree as 'tis,
25. Hither, Quirites! (here what limit is?)
26. Well-known darling of folk in the Circus Maximus far famed,
27. Thou, of unrighteous thought, that hardly canst
28. Priapus! perish I an words obscene
29. Dreadful wi' sickle and dire with thy greater part, O Priapus!
30. Hie thee amid these vines whereof an thou gather a grape-bunch
31. Long as thy wanton hand to pluck refrain
32. A damsel drier than the raisin'd grape,
33. Wont the Priapi of old were to have both Naiads and Dryads
34. At holy offering to the Lustful GodThief, for first thieving shalt be swived, but an
35. Thief, for first thieving shalt be swived, but an
36. We all show special notes of bodily shape:
37. Why on memorial tablet do they limn
38. Simply to thee I say whatever to say shall behove me
39. Form-charms in Mercury have might to please
40. Yon Telethusa befamed amid the damsels Suburran
41. Whoso comes hither shall a bard become
42. Bailiff Aristagoras of his grapes high-pedigree'd boasting
43. Refrain from deeming all my sayings be
44. What shouldest say this spear (although I'm wooden) be wishing
45. Whenas the Rigid God espied a wight
46. Ho girl! no whiter-skinned than Moorish man
47. Who of you people here shall come to sup
48. Tho' see you drenchèd wet that part of me
49. Thou, who art 'customed to view around the walls of our temple
50. A certain person, an thou please (Priapus!)
51. What be this pother? For what cause suspects
52. Ho thou, which hardly thy rapacious hand
53. Bacchus often is wont with a moderate bunch to be sated
54. E, D, an thou write, conjoining the two with a hyphen
55. Who could believe my words? 'Tis shame to confess that the sickle
56. Thou too dost mock me, Thief! and the infamous
57. A chough, a caries, an eld-worn grave
58. Whatever thief shall trick my faith may he
59. Know, lest due warning be denied by thee
60. Hadst thou as many of apples as offers of verses (Priapus!)
61. Why, cultivator, vainly moan to me
62. Sleep, O ye watchdogs! safe, while aid in guarding the garden
63. 'Tis not enough, my friends, I set my seat
64. One than a goose's marrow softer far
65. This, with his snout aye alert to uproot the lilies a-blowing
66. Thou, who lest manly mark thy glances meet
67. PEnelope's first syllable followed by firstling of DIdo
68. An I rustical seem to have spoken somewhat unlearned
69. What then? Had Trojan yard Taenerian dame and her Cunnus
70. When the fig's honied sweet thy taste shall catch
71. A starveling stranger made me laughing-stock
72. An thou pluck of this orchard fruit to my guarding committed
73. Of vergers diligent guard (Priapus!), threat
74. Not to be moved am I; shouldst thou, Thief, venture on thieving
75. Why, O ye pathic girls, with sidelong oglings observe me?
76. Right through the middle of lads and of lasses a passage shall pierce
77. Dodona is hallowed, Jupiter, to thee
78. Though I be agèd now, though head and chin
79. The Gods and Goddesses deny thy teeth
80. Although with yard distent (Priapus!) weighted
81. Know that this crass coarse yard nor lengthens nor stands as becomes it
82. While there is life 'tis fitting to hope, O rustical guardian!
83. Bailiff of house whilom, now I of fieldlet the tiller
84. What news be here? what send those angry gods?
85. Neither of garden nor of blessed vine
86. Roses in spring in the autumn fruits and in summer they bring me
87. I thuswise fashioned I by rustic art
88. This place, O youths, I protect, nor less this turf-builded cottage
89. This grove to thee devote I give, Priapus!
90. Thou who with prickle affrightest men and passives with sickle!
91. I am not hewèd of the fragile elm
92. A robber famed for greed exceeding wonder
93. Carved me no rustic boor his artless sickle a-plying
94. An thou would fain go filled thou mayest devour our Priapus
95. First a wild-fig-tree trunk was I, not useful as timber


A list of terms used in the Priapeia as designations of Priapus
List of terms used in the Priapeia to designate the virile member of Priapus
Alphabetical list of additional terms used by Latin authors in designation of the male sexual organ
List of terms used in the Priapeia to designate the female sexual organ
Alphabetical list of additional terms used by Latin authors in designation of the female sexual organ
Sodomy with Women
Erotic Classical Writers
List of agricultural and horticultural terms used tropically in a venereal sense
The Supine Posture in Coition
Dancing Girls
Depilation by Catamites
Postures of Coition
The Cunnilinges