Better And Better

If you don't draw yours, I won't draw mine.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Stand at thy right hand.

To those of us who like a little classical history mixed with our modern guns and science fiction, there are few more beautiful stories than "Horatius," as told by Thomas Babbington Macaulay in Lays Of Ancient Rome. Whether or not the tale of Horatius Cocles is true, it should have been. I've always liked the concept of the valiant captain of the guard, but too have also liked the concept of his two buddies.

"Who?" you might well ask? "Horatius stood alone." Well, yeah, sort of. Actually, he stood first, and two other Roman citizens volunteered to stand with him: Titus Herminius & Spurius Lartius. You never hear their names, do you? Horatius fought with them at his side, and finally sent them away. But they also served. Their names are just not remembered.

Proud, honorable, anonymous service is a trait that I very much admire, in life as well as in literature. For the past few years, my email address has come from a line uttered by Lartius: "'Lo, I will stand at thy right hand, And keep the bridge with thee.'"

While I'm not such a geek that I sit around constructing GIF animations to show the battle at the gate, I will admit to smiling a little bit smugly that, one time in my early twenties, I seduced a chick with my reading and partial recitation of "Horatius."

And as they: Any lady who would be seduced by such a thing, is worth seducing. :)


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3 Comments:

At Tuesday, June 30, 2009 11:16:00 AM, Blogger Old NFO said...

If nothing else she was well read :-)

 
At Thursday, July 02, 2009 7:59:00 AM, Blogger JPG said...

In March 1980 I was honored to be invited to an evening at The Sconce, Jeff Cooper's residence. On the wall of the observation deck was displayed a framed, calligraphic card done by one of his daughters:

XXVII

Then out spake brave Horatius,
The Captain of the Gate:
"To every man upon this earth
Death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better
Than facing fearful odds,
For the ashes of his fathers,
And the temples of his gods


I asked the source and noted the colonel's reply. I later sought out Baron Macaulay's slim volume about the brave old days of Rome.

 
At Saturday, July 04, 2009 7:01:00 AM, Blogger Pawpaw said...

Heh! I once seduced a young lady with a partial recitation of The Cremation of Sam Magee.

There are strange things done 'neath the midnight sun.

 

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