Quaedam haud iunior Hectoris parente,
Cumaeae soror, ut puto, Sibyllae,
aequalis tibi, quam domum revertens
Theseus repperit in rogo iacentem,
infirmo solet huc gradu venire
rugosasque manus ad astra tollens,
ne desit sibi, mentulam rogare.
hesterna quoque luce dum precatur,
dentem de tribus exscreavit unum.
'tolle' inquam 'procul ac iube latere
scissa sub tunica stolaque rufa,
ut semper solet, et timere lucem,
qui tanto patet indecens hiatu,
barbato macer eminente naso,
ut credas Epicuron oscitari'.
A she (than Hector's parent longer aged,
Sister to Cumae's Sibyl seemeth me;
Equal to thee whom, to his home returned,
Theseus found lying in the fosse a-cold!)
Hither with tottering gait is wont to come;
And, wrinkled hands upraising to the stars,
Begs that she'll never fail a yard to find;
And, as yester'een she prayed ere daylight fled
One of three teeth she happened out to crache.
'Bear it afar (cried I) and let it lurk
Beneath thy tattered robe and tawny stole;
(Fen as 'tis ever wont); and dread the fight
Of meagre jaws which ope with such a gape--
By hairy nostrils capped and eminent nose--
Thou hadst deemed to see an Epicurean yawn.'
A certain hag, more aged than the mother [Hecuba] of Hector (the sister, I opine, of the Cumaean Sibyl), old as thou whom Theseus when he came back home found lying in the grave, often comes hither with tottering steps, and lifting her shrivelled hands to the stars, begs that she may not lack the mentule. In yesterday's fight too, while praying, she spat out one of her three teeth. Take it far away, I say, and bid it he concealed under thy tattered tunic and thy scarlet stole, as 'tis its custom; let it shun the fight of thy meagre jaws, which, thy hairy nose in the air, gape with a chasm so foul and enormous that you would. think an Epicurean was yawning.