Thursday 3 August 2023

The Countryside in Summer

Laurentius Corvinus (1465-1527)
'Hortatur studentes, ut rura aliquando petant.'

Auricomus medium dum scandit Phebus ad axem,
   Et canis estivos efflat ab ore dies.
In nemus ire iuvat densaque iacere sub alno,
   Raucus arenosa qua sonat amnis aqua;
Quaque salutiferos exalat floris odores
   Vernus et aprico gramine ridet ager.
Florigera eliciunt sopitam rura Minervam,
   Sublevat ingenium pingue susurrus aque.
Rure fatigati revocant sua robora sensus,
   Et capiunt vires languida membra novas.

'Students are encouraged to travel to the countryside while they still have the time'

Golden-braided Apollo climbs ascends to the middle of the pole,
   and Sirius
breathes out the summer days from his lips.
It is pleasant to enter the woods and repose under a shady alder tree,
   where the raucous river resounds on the sandy water;
Where the vernal field exhales the flower's health-giving fragrances
   And rejoices in the sun-drenched grass.
Flowering fields solicit sleepy Minerva,
   The whispers of water stimulate their fertile nature.
In the countryside, exhausted minds regain their vigour,
tired limbs seize new strengths.
Laurentius Corvinus, Carminum structura ([Leipzig: Martin Landsberg, 1496]), p. [20]. My translation. emend. 1 scandet.
This poem is attributed to Bohuslaw Lobkowitz von Hassenstein in his Opera poetica, ed. by Marta Vaculínová (Munich: Saur, 2006), p. 249. It is more likely that Corvinus is the true author, as he published it in as his own work in 1496. The misattribution is easy to explain as a consequence of the circulation of such small poems in manuscript.

An alternate version of this poem with six addition lines (incipit: "Rura iuvant homines...") can be found in Moritz Seyffert, Text zu den Materialen der Palaestra musarum (Halle: Verlag der Buchhandlung des Waisenhauses, 1834), I, p. 142.