Vergil, Aeneid I 76-80

Aeolus haec contrā: 'Tuus, ō rēgīna, quid optēs

explōrāre labor; mihi iussa capessere fās est.

Tū mihi quodcumque hoc rēgnī, tū scēptra Iovemque

conciliās, tū dās epulīs accumbere dīvum

nimbōrumque facis tempestātumque potentem.'80

Manuscripts: M | R

Immensely flattered, Aeolus agrees (Austin). 

76: haec contra: sc. loquitur (F-B). tuus explorare labor: sc. est. Note the shifting of all the responsibility for the act upon Juno herself (Walpole). quid optes: subj. of indirect question (Wetherell). Direct question = quid optas (Walpole) (AG 574).

77: explorare: in predicate apposition to labor (est) (Carter). mihi: dat. of reference (Wetherell). capessere: frequentative (Walpole) (AG 263, 2b). fas est: “it is a sacred duty” (Wetherell).

78–79: tu...tu...tu: notice the emphatic repetition of the personal pronoun (Carter).

78: tu mihi: in strong juxtaposition (F-B). quodcumque...hoc: understand est (F-B). regni: partitive genitive with hoc (F-B) (AG 346). sceptra Iovemque: “the might of Jupiter” (Walpole).

79: concilias: This verb which  = (1) “make favourable” or “friendly” and (2) “win” or “secure for,” goes strictly with Iovem and more loosely with quodcumque hoc regni and sceptra (Page). das accumbere: sc. mihi, “you grant to me (the privilege) to recline at.” The Greeks and Romans reclined at meals. epulis: dative with a compound verb (F-B) (AG 370a). Local abl. (C-R) (AG 429.4). divum: = divorum (Carter) (AG 49g note).

80: nimborum: gen. after potens (Robertson). facis potentem: sc. me, “you make me powerful over” (+ gen.).


Aeolus, ī, m.: Aeolus. 1. The god who ruled over the winds, 1.52. 2. A follower of Aeneas from Lyrnesus, 12.542.

contrā: (prep. and adv.; prep. w. acc.), over against; opposite to, 1.13; against, 5.370; to, 9.280; on the contrary, 12.779; on the other hand, in reply, 1.76.

ō: (interj. expressing joy, grief, astonishment, desire, or indignation), O! oh! ah! w. voc., 2.281, et al.; w. sī and the subj., oh that, 11.415; sometimes placed after the word to which it relates, 2.281.

rēgīna, ae, f.: a queen, 1.9; princess, 1.273. (rēx)

explōrō, āvī, ātus, 1, a.: to ascertain by calling out; investigate, search; reconnoiter, explore, examine, 1.307; observe, 3.514; find out, determine, 1.77.

iussum, ī, n.: a thing ordered; command, injunction, order, 1.77, et al. (iubeō)

capessō, īvī or iī, ītus, 3, intens. a.: to seize, 3.234; (fig.), lay hold of, assume, 8.507; seek to reach, hasten to, 4.346; undertake, achieve, perform, 1.77. (capiō)

fās, indecl. n.: divine right or law; duty, justice, 3.55; privilege, 9.96; as predicate with esse, permitted, lawful, proper, incumbent, 1.77, et al. (rel. to for)

scēptrum, ī, n.: a royal staff; scepter, 1.653; freq.; (meton.), rule, sway, power, royal court, realm, 9.9; 1.253; authority, 11.238.

Iuppiter, Iovis, m.: Jupiter, son of Saturn and Rhea, and king of the gods, 1.223; Iuppiter Stygius, Pluto, 4.638.

conciliō, āvī, ātus, 1, a.: to bring into accord; to win or gain over; procure, secure, 1.79. (concilium)

epulae, ārum, f.: a banquet, feast, 1.79; food, 1.216. (sing. epulum)

accumbō, cubuī, cubitus, 3, n.: to lay one's self down, at or upon; recline, with dat., 1.79. (accubō)

nimbus, ī, m.: a violent rain; storm, tempest, 1.51; a black cloud, thunder-cloud, cloud, 3.587; a bright cloud; the nimbus surrounding a god, 2.616; cloud of smoke, 5.666; a multitude, 7.793.

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Suggested Citation

Christopher Francese and Meghan Reedy, Vergil: Aeneid Selections. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2016. ISBN: 978-1-947822-08-5.