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7. Does Venus Militaris, also, preside over the evil-doing41124112 So the ms. reading flagitiis, followed by all edd. except LB. and Orelli, who read plagiis—“kidnapping.” of camps, and the debaucheries of young men? Is there one Perfica,41134113 Of this goddess, also, no other author makes mention but the germ may be perhaps found in Lucretius (ii. 1116–7), where nature is termed perfica, i.e., “perfecting,” or making all things complete. [The learned translator forgets Tertullian, who introduces us to this name in the work Arnobius imitates throughout. See vol. iii. p. 140.] also, of the crowd of deities, who causes those base and filthy delights to reach their end with uninterrupted pleasure? Is there also Pertunda, who presides over the marriage41144114 i.e., in cubiculis præsto est virginalem scrobem effodientibus maritis. couch? Is there also Tutunus, on whose huge members41154115 The first five edd. read Mutunus. Cf. ch. 11. [I think it a mistake to make Mutubus = Priapus. Their horrible deformities are diverse, as I have noted in European collections of antiquities. The specialty of Mutunus is noted by our author, and is unspeakably abominable. All this illustrates, therefore, the Christian scruples about marriage-feasts, of which see vol. v. note 1, p. 435.] and horrent fascinum you think it auspicious, and desire, that your matrons should be borne? But if facts themselves have very little effect in suggesting to you a right understanding of the truth, are you not able, even from the very names, to understand that these are the inventions of a most meaningless superstition, and the false gods of fancy?41164116 Lit., the “fancies” or “imaginations” of false gods. Meursius proposed to transpose the whole of this sentence to the end of the chapter, which would give a more strictly logical arrangement; but it must be remembered that Arnobius allows himself much liberty in this respect. Puta, you say, presides over the pruning of trees, Peta over prayers; Nemestrinus41174117 Of these three deities no other mention is made. is the god of groves; Patellana is a deity, and Patella, of whom the one has been set over things brought to light, the other over those yet to be disclosed. Nodutis is spoken of as a god, because he41184118 The ms., LB., Hild., and Oehler read qui—“who brings;” the other edd., as above, quia. brings that which has been sown to the knots: and she who presides over the treading out of grain, Noduterensis;41194119 So the ms. (cf. ch. 11), first five edd., Oberth., Hild., and Oehler; the other edd. read Nodutim Ter. the goddess Upibilia41204120 So the ms., both Roman edd., and Oehler; the other edd. reading Vibilia, except Hild., Viabilia. delivers from straying from the right paths; parents bereaved of their children are under the care of Orbona,—those very near to death, under that of Nænia. Again,41214121 The ms. reads nam—“for,” followed by all edd. except Orelli, who reads jam as above, and Oehler, who reads etiam—“also.” Ossilago herself is mentioned as she who gives firmness and solidity to the bones of young children. Mellonia is a goddess, strong and powerful in regard to bees, caring for and guarding the sweetness of their honey.
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