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Bill Thayer

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Rutilius Namatianus: de Reditu suo

The Text on LacusCurtius

The Latin text and its English translation by J. Wight Duff and Arnold M. Duff, as well as the Introduction, are those found in Volume II of the Loeb Classical Library's Minor Latin Poets, pp753‑829.

The Author and the Work

The Introduction just mentioned provides a good overview, as well as some information about the manuscript tradition; but the gentle reader is also warmly encouraged to read Gilbert Norwood's critical appreciation of Rutilius (Phoenix I Suppl.: 36‑41), a graceful piece that brings out the best in our poet — a palliative to the pedestrian prose of the translation on this site. An older critical appreciation of Rutilius may also be read in the article Rutilius Namatianus of the Encyclopaedia Britannica, 14th ed. (1911).


As mentioned, text and translation were first published in 1934 and revised in 1935. They are now in the public domain pursuant to the 1978 revision of the U. S. Copyright Code, since the copyrights expired in 1962 and 1963 and were not renewed at the appropriate time, which would have been in 1961 thru 1963. (Details here on the copyright law involved.)

Line Numbering, Local Links

In the Latin, each line is a local link; in the translation, each paragraph. The links follow a consistent scheme, for which you should see the sourcecode; you can therefore link directly to any passage. As elsewhere in the texts on my site, the little flags allow you to toggle back and forth between the languages: each language opens in its own window.


The Loeb edition provides a fairly detailed, but as far as I can tell not comprehensive, apparatus criticus to the Latin text; I've reproduced it.


As almost always, I retyped the text by hand rather than scanning it — not only to minimize errors prior to proofreading, but as an opportunity for me to become intimately familiar with the work, an exercise which I heartily recommend: Qui scribit, bis legit. (Well-meaning attempts to get me to scan text, if successful, would merely turn me into some kind of machine: gambit declined.)

This transcription has been minutely proofread. In the table of contents above, the items are therefore shown on blue backgrounds, indicating that I believe the texts to be completely errorfree. As elsewhere onsite, the header bar at the top of each chapter's webpage will remind you with the same color scheme. Should you spot an error, however . . . please do report it.

[image ALT: A satellite view of part of the western basin of the Mediterranean, showing much of central Italy, almost all of Corsica and a small patch of southern France. It is my icon for Rutilius Namatianus' poem 'de Reditu suo'.]

The icon which I use to indicate this work is a small map of the poet's sea voyage; the full-size map will of course be found in the text and in the translation, with its links and additional information.

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Site updated: 29 Aug 07