He lost his father prematurely; and after the battle of Philippi and the return of Octavian to Rome, Propertius, like Virgil and Horace, was deprived of his, estate to provide land for the veterans, but, unlike them, he had no patrons at court, and he was reduced from opulence to comparative indigence.
The loss of his patrimony, however, thanks no doubt to his mother's providence, did not prevent Propertius from receiving a superior education.
She was a courtesan of the superior class, somewhat older than Propertius, but, as it seems, a woman of singular beauty and varied accomplishments.
Her .own predilections led her to literature; and in her society Propertius found the intellectual sympathy and encouragement which were essential for the development of his powers.
The quarrel was made up about the beginning of 25 B.C.; and soon after Propertius published his first book of poems and inscribed it with the name of his mistress.
But a careful study of the seventh poem of the last book, in which Propertius gives an account of a dream of her which he had after her death, leads us to the belief that they were once more reconciled, and that in her last illness Cynthia left to her former lover the duty of carrying out her wishes with regard to the disposal of her effects and the arrangements of her funeral.
Propertius then may have been one of the first to comply with the new enactments.
Propertius had a large number of friends and acquaintances, chiefly literary, belonging to the circle of Maecenas.
In person Propertius was pale and thin, as was to be expected in one of a delicate and even sickly constitution.
The poems of Propertius, as they have come down to us, consist of four books containing 4046 lines of elegiac verse.
The writings of Propertius are noted for their difficulty and their disorder.
A just appreciation of the genius and the writings of Propertius is made sensibly more difficult by the condition in which his works have come down to us.
Ovid thus assigns Propertius his place: successor fuit hic (Tibullus), tibi, Galle: Propertius illi (Tibullo): Quartus ab his serie temporis ipse fui (Tr.
She was older than Propertius (ii.
The fact that Propertius could not marry her, &c. For references to her beauty see ii.
There is no existing MS. of Propertius older than the 12th century.
The editio princeps of Propertius is that of 1472 (Venice).
I also read Tibullus, Catullus, Propertius, Horace (with Dacier's and Torrentius's notes), Virgil, Ovid's Epistles, with l"leziriac's commentary, the Ars amandi and the Elegies; likewise the Augustus and Tiberius of Suetonius, and a Latin translation of Dion Cassius from the death of Julius Caesar to the death of Augustus.
564; Propertius i.
Expressions in Propertius (ii.
Maecenas endeavoured also to divert the less masculine genius of Propertius from harping continually on his love to themes of public interest.
No poet has surpassed him in the power of vitally reproducing the pleasure and pain of the passing hour, not recalled by idealizing reflection as in Horace, nor overlaid with mythological ornament as in Propertius, but in all the keenness of immediate impression.
The greatest masters of this kind of poetry are the elegiac poets of the Augustan age - Tibullus, Propertius and Ovid.
But of less refinement in his life and less exquisite taste in his art, is Sextus Propertius (c. 50 - c. 15).
Propertius is a less accomplished artist and a less equably pleasing writer than either Tibullus or Ovid, but he shows more power of dealing gravely with a great or tragic situation than either of them, and his diction and rhythm give frequent proof of a concentrated force of conception and a corresponding movement of imaginative feeling which remind us of Lucretius.
Virgil in a supreme degree, and Horace, Propertius and Ovid in a less degree, had expressed in their poetry the romance of the past.
The vigorous vitality which gives interest to the personality of Catullus, Propertius and Ovid no longer characterizes their successors.
7, 77), and Propertius (ii.
38-40; Plutarch, Romulus, 17; Propertius, iv.
His editions of the Catalecta (1575), of Festus (1575), of Catullus, Tibullus and Propertius (1577), are the work of a man who not only writes books of instruction for learners, but is determined himself to discover the real meaning and force of his author.
From this time onwards we hear little or nothing of Veii up to the end of the Republic. Propertius speaks indeed of the shepherds within its walls.
Hostius is supposed by some to be the "doctus avus" alluded to in Propertius (iv.
It was thought at one time that a MS. of the Latin poet Propertius at Naples (Neap. 268)268) might have independent value as an authority for the text.
This is exemplified in the Neapolitanus of Propertius, a manuscript now at Wolfenbiittel.
A couplet of Propertius is written upon the walls of Pompeii in the following form: "Quisquis amator erit, Scythiae licet ambulet oris, I Nemo adeo ut feriat, barbarus esse uolet."
To take an instance already referred to, it is not clear at first sight whether in the couplet from Propertius Scythiae is more likely to be a misrecollection of some text of the 1st century A.D., or Scythicis some scribe's assimilation which made its way into the transmitted text in the course of the next thousand years.
169; Propertius ii.