Apr 25, 2017

Feles Lusca

Felem hanc luscam, levibus
furtim vestigiis meam
ad januam diluculo
semper primo subrepentem

uno fulgente lumine
ut mittam ei munere
offulas carnis avide
vorandas in silentio

obliquo dum me attendit
oculo, ut effugiat
statim appropinquare si
improviso vellem, multum

quae prurit cutemque scabit
pedibus posterioribus,
glabriorem quam e die
in diem cernens doleo

contractam jam scabredine
totam, hanc, lavarem aqua
tepida et sapone, si
sineret, atque ulcera

curarem inveterata
medicinae remedio
nigrae hujus felis luscae
in caligine latentis.

(Andreas Meszaros: 2017)

Cenomannica

Hanc imaginem photographicam feci in regione nomine Arcadia in Cenomannica: nomen latinum lectoribus forte ignotum. Lingua anglica dicitur “Maine”. Cenomannica (Maine) est una e Federatis Civitatibus Americae Septentrionalis.
Hic, nonnullos dies mihi licuit commorari, animum recreare, corpus refocillare. Verba Sancti Hieronymi venerunt in mentem: Habeat sibi Roma (Miamia in casu meo) suos tumultus, arena saeviat, circus insaniat, theatra luxurient. Mihi adhaerere Domino bonum est, et ponere in Domino Deo spem meam: ut cum paupertatem istam caelorum regna mutaverint, erumpam in vocem: "quid volui super terram?" Scilicet, cum tanta reperiam in caelo, parva et caduca quaesisse doleam in terra.
Animi solatium est, experiri naturalem pulchritudinem: arborum umbras, aeris temperiem, strata sub pedibus folia, vespertinam quietem, silentium nocturnum.

Apr 6, 2011

In the Office of Readings there is a word that is not so common in Latin: “oppilare”. The sentence is “omnis iniquitas oppilabit os suum” (all wickedness shall block up its mouth).
What is this “oppilare”?
It comes from “ob” (against as in “ob-struct”) and “pilare”. (Ob-pilare becomes oppilare.)
“Pilare” is derived from “pila” which is a kind of a column or pilar, used either to support something or to obstruct something, for example by throwing columns into water to plug up a canal, from which we have the English word “pile”.
But here is more: “Pila” is a “mortar” - a small bowl for crushing seeds or what have you. Mortars were used in antiquity before the invention of the mill. The name is derived from the verb “pinsare” (to crush with a pestle).
Therefore, as stated above “pila, pilae” is a square column, similar in form to the pestle, but larger.
“Pila, pilae” is also a ball (because some of the balls in antiquity were filled with hair “pilus”). And a small ball is called “pilula” from which we have the English “pill”.
Unrelated, except that it sounds similar is the word “pilum, pili (n)” or a javelin. “Pilatus” is one armed with a javelin.
Also “pilus, pili (m)” as mentioned above is hair from which we also have “capilli” - a combination of “caput” and “pili” (head hair).
What’s the point of all this? Many Latin words are related in various ways and it is useful to explore them to find out if something doesn’t sound familiar. If it does sound familiar, you will not need to look them up in a dictionary and you will not forget them easily.