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4.11  ·  Rating details ·  7,099 Ratings  ·  200 Reviews
Catullus, who lived during some of the most interesting and tumultuous years of the late Roman Republic, spent his short but intense life (?84-54 B.C.E.) in high Roman society, rubbing shoulders with various cultural and political luminaries, including Caesar, Cicero, and Pompey. Catullus's poetry is by turns ribald, lyric, romantic, satirical; sometimes obscene and always ...more
Paperback, 232 pages
Published June 30th 2005 by Alianza Editorial (first published -60)
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i relate to catullus bc i too am petty, bitter, overdramatic & bisexual.
Jul 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: verse, eros, roman
Your Saturnalian bonne-bouche

I read this Penguin edition of Catullus's poems side by side Peter Green's translation. I have no hesitation in saying I prefer the latter, not because I am in any way able to compare it with the original Latin, but seeing the parallel text I can see that Green has endeavoured to remain faithful to metre, length and the rhythm of the original. This stands in contrast to Whigham's translation with its arbitrary enjambments and unruly line-breaks, where some po

1st century BCE portrait from Pompeii

Odi et amo. quare id faciam, fortasse requiris?
nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior.

In the mid-1st century BCE the Roman Republic was stumbling to a close, torn by the struggles between factions of the Roman aristocracy trying to hold onto its wealth and influence, the rising merchants and bankers - some of whom were obscenely wealthy and holding the financial lifeline of many aristocrats - and the uncountable plebians driven off their farms by the aristoc

L'abandon d'Ariane

Le temps où je remettais à plus tard l'exploration de la poésie latine est révolu. J'ai une préférence pour le grec, mais cet ouvrage (l'émancipation féminine Dans La Rome Antique) a piqué ma curiosité quant aux mœurs romaines de la fin de la République et du début de l'Empire: en route pour l'Italie! Catulle est un Romain du 1er siècle avant notre ère, contemporain de la fin de la République. On trouve ici plus d'une centaine de poèmes plus ou moins longs, et dont les vers son
Nov 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Peter Green's exuberantly bitchy translation of the complete poems of the Roman poet Catallus never fails to amuse, amaze, and indeed shock, which was certainly the poet's original intent. With far too many earlier translations of these viscerally human poems, translators have tried to protect us from the full onslaught of both Catallus' subject and language. Not here. For once, we feel an uncensored direct connection to a person who lived more than 2000 years ago. We see how he's just like us, ...more
Oct 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Miser Catulle, desinas ineptire,
et quod vides perisse perditum ducas.
Fulsere quondam candidi tibi soles,
cum ventitabas quo puella ducebat
amata nobis quantum amabitur nulla.
Ibi illa multa tum iocosa fiebant,
quae tu volebas nec puella nolebat.
Fulsere vere candidi tibi soles.
Nunc iam illa non vult: tu quoque impotens noli,
nec quae fugit sectare, nec miser vive,
sed obstinata mente perfer, obdura.
Vale puella, iam Catullus obdurat,
nec te requiret nec rogabit invitam.
At tu dolebis, cum rog
Ana Rînceanu
I wish I'd read this book in high school, I would have liked the Romans more.

Yes, Catullus wrote poems to and about his friends, erotic poems, invectives and condolences but I personally believe that he lives up to his fame as the inventor of the "angry love poem". His spiteful humor is great and the petty is strong, resounding as clear today as two millennia ago.
Laura لاورا
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poesia
« Viviamo, o mia Lesbia, e amiamoci,
e le dicerie dei vecchi troppo severi
consideriamole tutte di valore pari a un soldo.
I soli possono tramontare e risorgere;
noi, quando una buona volta finirà questa breve luce,
dobbiamo dormire un'unica notte eterna.
Dammi mille baci, poi cento,
poi ancora mille, poi di nuovo cento,
poi senza smettere altri mille, poi cento;
poi, quando ce ne saremo dati molte migliaia,
li mescoleremo, per non sapere (il loro numero)
e perché nessun malvagio ci possa guardare male,
Evan Leach
”In bed I read Catullus. It passes my comprehension why Tennyson could have called him ‘tender.’ He is vindictive, venomous, and full of obscene malice. He is only tender about his brother and Lesbia, and in the end she gets it hot as well.”

- Harold Nicolson, Diaries and Letters 1945-1962.

Catullus was a Roman poet that lived through some of the most tumultuous days of the Roman Republic, from about 84-54 b.c. He spent his short life socializing in the best of circles, and his poetry contains ja
Aug 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Vulgar, obscene, offensive, yet often hilarious, sometimes beautiful and incredibly moving. Catullus poems are powerful and always packed with emotion. Many modern readers will probably find him very relatable as well. He rages against his ex-lover Lesbia and calls her a whore in several poems (and not in a roundabout way either) yet is still obviously madly in love with her. He both praises and insults his friends and fellow poets, and often accuses them of questionable sexual practices. My fav ...more
Jan 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, history
Catullus's poems are amazing!

I've read them before but I wanted to have my own edition and read them again. In the complete poems (I recommend you to have a bilingual edition of Latin and the language you speak) we have various poems. The most of these poems are about his biggest love Lesbia, insults, and the admiration he had for his friends.

If you enjoy poetry I can only suggest you to read these poems.
Sep 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Catullus is a great Latin poet whose verse is astonishingly contemporary in the treatment of his themes of love and betrayal. Most of his poems are brief, less than 20 lines, and about a third of these are about his love affair with Lesbia, who is probably Clodia, a married woman from one of Rome's leading families. Other poems deal with his friendships and betrayals, including some delightful insults. In addition, there are eight longer poems, including two marriage songs, a poem about Attis wh ...more
Vladana Perlić

Život, Lezbijo, ljubav neka bude,
za nas staraca strogih zlobni šapat
niti prebite pare ne vrijedi!
Sunce zalazi pa se opet rađa;
a kratkotrajnu našeg dana svjetlost
vječna smjenjuje noć i san bez jave.
Daj mi tisuću poljubaca, još sto,
drugu tisuću, zatim daj mi još sto,
opet tisuću novu, zatim još sto,
a kad tisuće mnoge prebrojimo,
tad ih pomiješamo kako sami
znali ne bismo - niti zavist čija
zla - koliko smo poljubaca dali.


Vas ću nabiti sprijeda i odostrag,
tebe, pederu Aurelije, tebe,
kurvo Furije, j
Feb 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry, reviewed
no one has differentiated translators yet, this one picked at random. copley was my favorite before garrick turned me onto carl sesar's, first one to do justice to the extraordinary level of obscenity of the original
vi macdonald
He's not the most "poetic" of the the Classical Latin poets I've read - but he wrote with such a passion and intensity that his poems are wonderfully engaging regardless
Douglas Wilson
If nothing else, Catullus knew how to want things. And where is all of it now?
Michael Arnold
May 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, poetry
Catulli carmina est aurum. et aureum poeta est.

This Oxford Edition cover would make you assume the Latin included is a nice extra they have added in because they are nice, but really the end notes in this book are FAR more focused around textual scholarship of the Latin, rather than notes on aesthetics and annotations on the poems - things that would help someone new to Catullus's poetry. Really, here, the translation is secondary, and Catullus-virgins should be made aware of this.
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pero, ¿cómo no amarlo al Catu? El Catu cerró la cancha en el primer siglo antes de Cristo:

"Por favor, mi dulce Ipistila, objeto de mis delicias y de mis pasatiempos, invitame a que yo vaya a tu casa a pasar la siesta. Y si lo hacés, añadí esto otro: que nadie eche el cerrojo de la puerta, ni se te ocurra salir fuera; al contrario, quedate en casa y preparémonos a coger nueve veces seguidas. Y si vas a hacerlo, invitame en seguida: pues estoy echado recién comido y, saciado boca arriba, atravieso
Dec 16, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Catullus. THE POEMS OF CATULLUS. ****. This was an edition published by The Folio Society in 1981, ably translated by James Michie. What’s particularly nice about this edition is that it contains the Latin and the corresponding English translation on facing pages. Even though I had four years of Latin in high school and grew up with the Latin Mass, I don’t remember enough to translate this stuff anymore. You can scan the Latin, however, and get the sense of the poems and then swing your eyes ove ...more
May 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Leggendo i carmi di Catullo di ha l'impressione che la Bellezza – quella con la B maiuscola, appunto – esista. E che Catullo abbia saputo metterla nero su bianco in tutto il suo fulgore. E vi consiglio la lettura dell'edizione Einaudi, dove i carmi sono ben tradotti e il commento è utile per la comprensione dei componimenti.

La mia donna dice che non vuol stare con nessun altro,
neanche se la chiedesse Giove in persona.
Così dice, ma quello che dice una donna all'amante appassionato,
va scritto sul
Jan 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: latin
Catullus is one of the greatest Roman poets. Had a single manuscript of his collection not been discovered in Verona c. 1300, he would have been lost to us forever. It would be hard to point to a collection of poems that is more passionately intense, thematically wide ranging and skilfully executed than that of Catullus. It is all here: erotic love, friendship, travel, principles of poetic composition, political operators, poetasters, prostitutes, dinner invitations, socially inept wannabes, pos ...more
Aug 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One does not find humorous poems about rape to be beautiful as well everyday, but such is the magic of this exquisite poet from the time of Caesar and Cicero. Catullus' subject is, invariably, the feelings of rapture or disgust associated with love and hatred; his style is at once polished and crude, surrounding the words testicle or cock with adjectives of wonder and grace. Surprisingly, the National Review occasionally prints Catullus but, then again, the right-wing is well known for sexual re ...more
May 12, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry-authors
Catullus poem #101 is probably the greatest poem in Latin and one of the greatest poems ever. Here it is in Latin:

Multas per gentes et multa per æquora uectus
aduenio has miseras, frater, ad inferias,
ut te postremo donarem munere mortis
et mutam nequiquam alloquerer cinerem,
quandoquidem fortuna mihi tete abstulit ipsum,
heu miser indigne frater adempte mihi.
nunc tamen interea hæc prisco quæ more parentum
tradita sunt tristi munere ad inferias,
accipe fraterno multum manantia fletu,
atque in perpetuum
Cassandra Kay Silva
What a sensual, torrid, and beautifully composed set of work is this? I am speechless. Catullus your words are like silk. Your stories and musings on human behavior are debauchery at its best. And Ha! The poem regarding your defense of flowery rhetoric. For you are fed wine and grapes in abound and surrounded by ladies night and day. In truth who could fault you for such as this! Oh a man who knows women, and knows his way around the written word is a rare and delicious treat.
Jul 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautifully contemporary rendering of Catullus that captures the fire and chutzpah, the tenderness, the sheer cleverness of this quintessential lyric poet.
The history of literature, starts, like so many other things, with the Greeks and the Romans. The Poems of Catullus has been on my shelves for several years, and finally, I read it. It is not entirely easy to interpret the poems, even with the very good introduction by the translator, Peter Whigham.

Here a few lines from the introduction.
"We know very little about Catullus's life: even the dates of his birth and death are uncertain. The likeliest figures are: born 84, died 54 B.C. His full name w
Aug 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Passare dai mille baci giocosi e pieni di spensierata passione o dal passerotto (astenersi malpensanti) adorato dall'amata ai versetti satirici sulla bisessualità di Cesare o l'eccitazione subitanea dei lombi alla vista di un rapporto sessuale può esser traumatico. Infatti il grande cisalpino è ricordato per il suo inspiegabile (apparentemente) dannarsi nei confronti di un amore intriso d'odio che ormai prova nei confronti del suo (ex) grande amore. O per il dolore che lo consuma al pensiero che ...more
(Translator: Peter Whigham). I really want to read at least one other translation of Catullus poems before giving a rating. I did enjoy the poems but I felt that the translation was a bit... off(?), compared to other translations I read online. So I'll read either Peter Green's or Guy Lee's translation sometime in the future!

Francine Maessen
Catullus is just great. He is so immensely innovative and sharp. His longer works drag out a bit more, altough even there he keep focused on the image he wants to show, like with Ariadne on the beach. But I personally prefer his shorter poems. I like how to the point he is.
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, classics
These poems are hysterical, and at times almost sweet, but overall they're sexist and violent-though to be fair, that's more telling about the time period in which they were written than the poet himself.
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topics  posts  views  last activity 1 1 Jun 15, 2017 11:46PM  
  • The Poems
  • Idylls
  • Heroides
  • Epigrams
  • The Eclogues
  • The Sixteen Satires
  • Pharsalia: The Civil War
  • Sappho: A New Translation
  • The Odes
  • The Satyricon
  • The Comedies
  • Pro M. Caelio Oratio
  • The Way Things Are: The De Rerum Natura
Gaius Valerius Catullus (ca. 84 BC – ca. 54 BC) was a Roman poet of the 1st century BC. His surviving works are still read widely, and continue to influence poetry and other forms of art. Catullus invented the "angry love poem."
More about Catullus...
“Odi et amo. quare id faciam, fortasse requiris?
nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior.”
“Odi et amo; quare fortasse requiris, nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior.

(my translation: I hate and I love, you ask why I do this, I do not know, but I feel and I am tormented)”
More quotes…