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Gaius Valerius Catullus (c.84 - c.54 BC)
  Translated by Jonathan Swift (1667-1745)

              From Catullus
        Lesbia mi dicet semper malè &c

    Lesbia for ever on me rails;
        To talk on me she never fails:
    Yet, hang me, but for all her Art;
        I find that I have gain'd her Heart:
    My proof is thus: I plainly see
        The Case is just the same with me:
    I curse her ev'ry hour sincerely;
        Yet, hang me, but I love her dearly.


Swift translated Catullus's Carmina xcii on July 18, 1736, and it was first published in 1746. A transcription of the original manuscript with additional notes can be found in:
  • Swift, Jonathan. The Poems of Jonathan Swift. Harold Williams, ed. London: Oxford University Press, 1937.

    The first published version was under the title CATULLUS de LESBIA and preceded by the Latin:

        LESBIA mî dicit semper male; nec tacet unquam
            De me; Lesbia me, dispeream, nisi amat.
        Quo signo? Quia sunt totidem mea: Deprecor illam
            Assiduè; verum, dispeream, nisi amo.

    The translation can also be found in:

  • Sucre, Natalia. Random House Treasury of Favorite Love Poems, 2nd Edition. New York: Random House, Inc. 2004.