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Wordle: Martial VI 



I asked you, Phoebus, for 100 borrowed sesterces,
When you had said to me 'do mean you require nothing?'
You inquire, you hesitate, you delay for 10 days,
You torment both yourself and me: now I ask, Phoebus, that you say no.

XX meter: Elegiac Couplet

Mūtŭă|tē cēn|tūm sēs|tērtĭă|Phoēbĕ rŏ|gāvī
     Cūm mĭhĭ|dīxīs|sēs||ēxĭgĭs|ērgŏ nĭ|hīl
Īnquīr|īs dŭbĭ|tās cūnc|tārīs|mēquē|diēbūs
     Tēquĕ dĕ|cēm crŭcĭ|ās|| iām rōgŏ|Phoēbĕ nĕ|gā.



Here Martial, after being asked by his patron Phoebus if he needed anything, requests a loan of 100 sesterces. Phoebus then proceeds to pester Martial for 10 days as to whether or not he will be able to pay back the loan if it is granted. Martial in the end urges Phoebus just deny the loan, this for Martial is better than the constant inquisitions. It is evident in other epigrams that Martial joked that for some a loan with little or no interest was just as good as a gift from a patron (White, 1978). In this case, the hassle Phoebus caused was enough to make requesting the loan not even worth it.

White, Peter. ‘Amicitia and the Profession of Poetry in Early Imperial Rome.’ The Journal of Roman Studies. Vol. 68 (1978) pp. 74-92. Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies.

D. Droggitis