Vergil, Aeneid 12.887-952

Aeneas urged opposite, and brandished his great
treelike spear, and spoke thus with savage heart:
“What now delays you? Or why now, Turnus, do you withdraw?
This is not for contesting by running, but hand-to-hand with savage arms!
Turn yourself into all appearances, and collect whatever you can,
whether by your character or by your skill. Choose to follow the
lofty stars with wings or bury yourself, shut in the cavernous lands.”

He, shaking his head, replied: “Your fiery words do not terrify
me, fierce one; the gods and hostile Jupiter terrify me.”
Nor having spoken more, he took sight of a great boulder,
a great ancient boulder, which by chance did lie upon the field,
placed as a boundary in the field that it might dissolve dispute of the field.
Scarcely could twelve chosen men have lifted it upon their shoulders,
such as the bodies of men now produced by the earth are;
he, angered, hurled the snatched boulder at the enemy with
agitated hand, rising high and with haste.
But he knew neither himself running nor going, or
raising or hurling the immense rock by hand;
his knees give way, his cold blood stiffens with chill.
Then the rock, itself having been thrown through empty void by force,
did not traverse the whole space, nor did it accomplish a blow.
And as in sleet, when weak rest has pressed eyes
by night, it seems that we want in vain to extend
the eager paths and we, sick, are adequate in the middle
of our attempts; the tongue is not strong, his known strengths
are not adequate for his body, nor do his voice or words follow:
thus the dire goddess denies success to Turnus, by which
he sought a way to virtue. Then various thoughts turn in his
breast; He looks upon the Rutulians and the city,
and he delays from fear, and he dreads to pursue death,
and he sees nor to where he might remove himself, nor with what force
he might strike his enemy, nor does he see his sister or the driver of his chariot.

Aeneas brandishes a fatal spear to him delaying,
found an opportunity with his eyes, and with his entire body
throws at a distance. Never thus do boulders thrown at a wall by
a catapult resound, nor do they burst apart with lightining
of such a sound. The spear flies, carrying awful destruction,
the image of a black whirlwind, and opens the mouth of the cuirass
and the great circle of the seven-layered shield;
hissing, it pierces Turnus’ middle thigh. Great Turnus falls to the
earth with doubled knee from the blow.
The Rutulians rise with a groan and the total mountain
resounds about and the deep groves widely return the voice.

He, on the ground as a suppliant, extending his eyes and right hand,
begging, says, “Truly, I plead I have not deserved this.
Take advantage of your lot. If any care of the miserable parent is able
to touch you, I beg that you pity the age of Daunus
(and your father Anchises was such to you),
and return me to my people, or, if you prefer, my body,
despoiled of life. You have conquered me, and, your victim, I entreat
that I might again see Ausonian lands; the Lavinia is your wife:
do not hold other hatreds.” Hard Aeneas stood
with his arms, turning his eues, and he stayed his hand;
and now, and now by the more, Turnus’ speech has begun to sway
him delaying, when the malfortuned baldric came to view
and his sword belt shone with known bullae
of the Pallantian boy, whom, defeated, Turnus killed
with a wound, and wore his noted thingy upon his shoulders.

After Aeneas saw with his eyes the spoils and reminders of
savage sadness, he was incensed to fury and was terrible
with rage: “Would you, wearing prizes of my friends,
snatch them from me? Pallas strikes you with this wound,
and takes retribution from your polluted blood!”
Speaking this, he, fiery, buries his sword beneath his adversary’s
chest, and his frigid limbs are loosed, and, with a groan,
he flees, unworthy, from life under the shades.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s