Ancient Rome: Catallus – You Simply Do Not Fuck With Roman Poets!

Here is your history lesson for today. Meet Catallus:

Catullus, in full Gaius Valerius Catullus (born c. 84 bce, Verona, Cisalpine Gaul—died c. 54 bce, Rome) Roman poet whose expressions of love and hatred are generally considered the finest lyric poetry of ancient Rome. In 25 of his poems he speaks of his love for a woman he calls Lesbia, whose identity is uncertain. Other poems by Catullus are scurrilous outbursts of contempt or hatred for Julius Caesar and lesser personages. – Encyclopedia Britannica

He wrote some nice, lighthearted poetry:

O sparrow, my sweetheart’s delight,
with whom she is accustomed to play, whom she is accustomed to hold in her lap,
To whom, when reaching for it, she is accustomed to give the top of her finger,
And to provoke sharp bites,
Whenever it is pleasing for my shining sweetheart
To make some dear joke,
And comfort for her grief,
So that then, I think, her heavy passion may find rest:
If only I could play with you just as she does,
and lighten the sad cares of my mind.

Catallus 2

However, you don’t want to piss the guy off. See, people back then didn’t have meds, so they tended to go off the rails sometimes. Case in point:

I will sodomize you and face-fuck you,
Cocksucking Aurelius and anus-busting Furius,
You who think, from my verses
Because they are delicate, that I have no shame.
For it is right for the devoted poet
To be chaste himself, but it’s not
Necessary for his verses to be so.
[Verses] which then indeed have taste and charm,
If they are delicate and a little shameless,
And because they can incite an itch,
And I don’t mean in boys, but in
Those hairy old men who can’t get it up.
You, because you have collected many thousands of my kisses,
You think me less of a man?
I will sodomize you and face-fuck you.

Catallus 16

Catallus is widely considered one of the best writers of Latin poetry. Don’t be the next Cocksuckling Aurelius or Anus-Bursting Furius. Expand your horizons and read some classical literature. For more gallant poetry by Catallus, be sure to check out these sites:

Negenborn, Wikipedia


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