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On this page: Martfna – Martianus – Martina



reta, were written ehiefly under Domitian

74, xiv. 1. 179, 213), although the composition

may have been spread over the holidays of many


It is well known that the word Epigram, which originally denoted simply an inscription, was, in process of time, applied to any brief metrical effusion, whatever the subject might be, or what­ever the form under which it was presented, and in this sense the heterogeneous mass which con­stitutes the Greek anthology, and all the lighter effusions of Catullus, are called epigrams. In many of these, it is true, the sentiments are pithily worded, arid a certain degree of emphasis is re­served for the conclusion ; but Martial first placed the epigram upon the narrow basis which it now occupies, and from his time the term has been in a great measure restricted to denote a short poem, in which all the thoughts and expressions converge to one sharp point, which forms the termination of the piece. It is impossible not to be amazed by the singular fertility of imagination, the prodigious flow of wit, and the delicate felicity of language everywhere developed in this extraordinary col­lection, and from no source do we derive more copious information on the national customs and social habits of the Romans during the first century of the empire. But however much we may admire the genius of the author, we feel no respect for the character of the man. The inconceivable servility of adulation (e. g. ix. 4, v. 8) with which he loads Domitian, proves that he was a courtier of the lowest class, and his name is crushed by a load of cold-blooded filth spread ostentatiously over the whole surface of his writings, too clearly denoting habitual impurity of thought, combined with habi­tual impurity of expression.

Three very early impressions of Martial have been described by bibliographers, all of them in 4to., all in Roman characters, and all without date and without name of place or of printer. One of these, by many considered as the Editio Princeps, is supposed by Dibdin (Bibl. Spencer, vol. iv. p. 532) to have been the work of Ulric Han. The first edition which bears a date, and which contests the honour of being the Princeps, is that which appeared at Ferrara, 4 to. 1471 (Dibdin, BibL Spen­cer, vol. ii. p. 169), and which does not contain the " Liber de Spectaculis." It was followed by the edition of Vindelin de Spira, 4to. Venet., without date, but probably executed about 1472 ; by that of Sweynheym and Pannartz, fol. Rom. 1473 ; that of Joannes de Colonia, fol. Venet. 1475 ; and that of Philippus de Lavania, fol. Me-diol. 1478, tjhe two last being merely reprints from Spira, The text, which was gradually im­proved by the diligence of Calderinus, fol. Venet. 1474, 1475, 1480, &c., of Aldus, 8vo. Venet. 1501, and Junius, 8vo. Basil. 1559, first assumed a satisfactory form in the hands of Gruterus, 16mo. Franef. 1602, who boasted, not without reason, that he had introduced more than a thousand cor­rections, and was still further purified by Scriverius, Lug. Bat. 12mo. 1619, Amst. 12mo. 1621, I6mo. 1629, and by Raderus, fol, Mogunt. 1627, Colon. 1628. Schrevelius, in the 8vo Variorum of 1670, exhibited very judiciously the results of the toils of his predecessors, and no important improve­ments were made from that time until 1842, when Schneidewinn published a new recension (8vo. 2 vols. Grem. 1842 founded upon a most careful


examination of a very large number of MSS. His prolegomena contain a full and highly valuable account of these and other codices, of the places where they are at present deposited, and of their relative value. No ancient author stands more in need of an ample and learned commentary, but none has yet appeared which will satisfy all the wants of the student. The most useful, upon the whole, is that which is attached to the edition of Lemaire, 3 vols. 8vo. Paris, 1825, but Schneide­winn has promised to publish the notes of Fr. Schmieder, the preceptor of C. 0. Muller, of which he speaks in high praise, and expresses a hope that he may be able to add the remarks compiled by Bottiger, which passed after his death into the hands of Weichert.

A great number of translations from Martial will be found dispersed in the works of the English poets, and numerous selections have been given to the world from time to time,, such as those by Thomas May, 8vo. Lond. 1629 ; by Fletcher, 8vo. Lond. 1656 ; by J. Hughes, in his Miscellanies, 8vo. Lond. 1737 ; by W. Hay, 12mo. Lond. 1754 ; by Wright, along with the distichs of Cato, 12mo. Lond. 1763 ; by Rogers, in his poems, 12mo. Lond. 1782 ; and finally a complete version of the whole by Elphinstone, 4to. Lond. 1782, a singular monument of dulness and folly. In French we have complete translations into verse, by Marolles, 4to. Paris, 1675, a translation into prose having been published previously (1655) by the same author ; by Volland, 3 vols. 8vo. Paris, 1807 ; and by E. T. Simon, 3 vols. 8vo. Paris, 1819. Julius Scaliger rendered a considerable number of the epigrams into Greek, and these translations will be found placed under the original text in the edition of Lemaire. (Plin. Ep. iii. 20. al. 21 ; Spartiam AeL Ver. 2 ; Lamprid. Alex. Sever. 38 ; Sidon. Apoll. CarmAx. 33 ; Martial, i: 1, 2, 3, 62, 101, 117, ii. 92, iii. 95, iv. 10, 72, v. 13, 16, 23, vi. 43, 61, 64, 82, vii. 11, 17, 51, 88, 93, viii. 3, 61, ix. 84, 98, x. 24, 92, 94, 100, 103, 104, xi. 3, 24, xii. 21, 31, xiii. 3, 119. An account of the celebrated MS. of Martial preserved in the Advo­ cates' Library, Edinburgh, will be found in Dalyell, " Some account of an ancient MS. of Martial," &c., 8vo. Edin. 1812.). [W. R.]

MARTIANUS. [marcianus.]

MARTINA, a woman in Syria, celebrated for her skill in poisoning, and a favourite of Plancina, the wife- of Cn. Piso, was sent to Italy by Cn. Sentius, the governor of Syria, that she might be brought to trial, but she died suddenly upon her arrival at Brundisium, a. d. 20. (Tac. Ann. ii. 74,

• • • >_ \ ^

in. 7.)


MARTFNA. [heraclius, p. 405, b.] MARTINIA'NUS, magister officiorum to the emperor Licinius, by whom he was elevated to the dignity of Caesar, when active preparations were in progress for the last great struggle against Constan-tine. Martinianus was compelled to surrender

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