Martial, full name Marcus Valarius Martialis

Martial, full name Marcus Valarius Martialis
c. 42
c. 102

Spanish-born Latin Poet and Writer of Epigrams

Author Quotes

While you cannot resolve what you are, at last you will be nothing.

You ask what a nice girl will do? She won't give an inch, but she won't say no.

You should not fear, nor yet should you wish for your last day.

Who called thee vicious was a lying elf; thou art not vicious, for thou art vice itself.

You collect your straggling hairs on each side, Marinus, endeavoring to conceal the vast expanse of your shining bald pate by the locks which still grow on your temples. But the hairs disperse and return to their own place with every gust of wind; flanking you bare poll on either side with crude tufts. We might imagine we saw Hermeros of Cydas standing between Speudophorus and Telesphorus. Why not confess yourself an old man? Be content to seem what you really are, and let the barber shave off the rest of your hair. There is nothing more contemptible than a bald man who pretends to have hair.

You utter all sorts of falsehoods, Pontilianus; I assent to them. You recite bad verses; I praise them. You sing; I do the same. You drink, Pontilianus; I drink also. You are rude; I pretend not to perceive it. You wish to play at chess; I allow myself to be beaten. There is one thing only which you do without me, and I hold my tongue on the subject. Yet you never make me the slightest present. "When I die," say you, "I shall remember you handsomely." I do not look for anything; but die.

Who gives to friends so much from Fate secures, that is the only wealth forever yours.

You complain, Velox, that the epigrams which I write are long. You yourself write nothing; your attempts are shorter.

You were constantly, Matho, a guest at my villa at Tivoli. Now you buy it--I have deceived you; I have merely sold you what was already your own.

Tomorrow will I live, the fool does say; Today itself's too late; the wise lived yesterday.

Who thinks it only frivolous flim-flam.

You crystal break, for fear of breaking it: Careless and careful hands like faults commit.

You wonder that Marius' ear smells' unpleasantly. You are the cause of this, Nestor; you whisper into it.

To-morrow you will live, you always cry; In what fair country does this morrow lie, That 'tis so mighty long ere it arrive? Beyond the Indies does this morrow live? 'Tis so far-fetched, this morrow, that I fear 'Twill be both very old and very dear. "To-morrow I will live," the fool does say: To-day itself's too late;--the wise lived yesterday.

Whoever makes great presents, expects great presents in return.

You do not publish your own verse, Laelius; you criticize mine. Pray cease to criticize mine, or else publish your own.

You'll get no laurel crown for outrunning a burrow.

We know this to be all nonsense.

Why do I not kiss you, Philaenis? you are bald. Why do I not kiss you, Philaenis? you are carrotty. Why do I not kiss you, Philaenis? you are one-eyed. He who kisses you, Philaenis, sins against nature.

You give me back, Phoebus, my bond for four hundred thousand sesterces; lend me rather a hundred thousand more. Seek some one else to whom you may vaunt your empty present: what I cannot pay you, Phoebus, is my own.

Your page stands against you and says to you that you are a thief.

What quick wit is found in sudden straits!

Why do strong arms fatigue themselves with frivolous dumb-bells? To dig a vineyard is a worthier exercise for men.

You give me nothing during your life, but you promise to provide for me at your death. If you are not a fool, you know what you make me wish for.

Your seventh wife, Phileros, is now being buried in your field. No man's field brings him greater profit than yours, Phileros.

Author Picture
First Name
Martial, full name Marcus Valarius Martialis
Birth Date
c. 42
Death Date
c. 102

Spanish-born Latin Poet and Writer of Epigrams