Text and Translation of the Latin Oration Delivered at Princeton

Princeton Classics major Veronica Shi delivered the traditional Latin oration at commencement ceremonies on May 31. Here is the text and translation of her Carmen Salutationis:

Salutatio

Habita in Comitiis Academicis Princetoniae
In Nova Caesarea prid. Kal. Iun.
Anno Salutis MMXI
Anno Academiae CCLXIV

Carmen Salutationis

quibus modis, quîs principiis, amans
Mater, salutem progeniem tuam?
    favete opus, Musae, novis ne
       nunc titubem pedibus rubescens!
nobis aratrix splendida messium
felixque dux, te, praesidium bonum,
    primam saluto, namque florent
       omnia lumine sub tuo; nec
vos nunc silebo, qui sapientia
tuentur Almam semper et omnibus
    Matrem; professoresque laudo
        filia grata scientiamque
eorum cano, quae discipulos alit
virtute, curis et patientia
    benignius: vobis pietas
        magna, amor altus et eruditus.
et vos, parentes: mane scholasticos
nos creditis, quos canticulo meo
   gaudere nunc vidistis: ecce
        spes modo perficimus decoras.

nunc paululo modis minoribus,
sodales, libere vos alloquor;
ignoscite inflatis prioribus
verbis: eram iussa ut modo gravi
cantarem.  nunc autem imprudentias
varias, Musae procaces, pandite (Ha!):
quae lectiones desertae, prius
quae vel licentiae convivia
bacchantis vel longae turpissimi
amoris noctes, et quot et quibus-
cum – quid nunc? vos irascimini mihi?
noli sanctos simulare aut integros;
et cur metuistis? non ullo modo
vestri parentes haec intelligunt.
horum atque si fecisti umquam nihil,
hercle! “Miser!” tantum dicam tibi.
laeti memores este et licentiae
aeque et victoriae, carissimi
(numquam triumphi parca scilicet):
omnia sciens ignoscit omnibus
Mater; non semper vita vera ita est.
nostram vitam tigridis quam splendidam!
sed cuique, sodales, nostrum hic parcius
tempus datum, vae, fatis invidis.

huc redibunt aestiferi dies, sub
limpido caelo foliis vigebit
flammeis Autumnus, et alba mox et
     frigida bruma
vere solvetur vice. nos tamen non
huc redimus; nos, abituri amici,
ex pylis late gerimus, calentes
     cordibus altis,
signa doctrinae: variis alumnis
Mater auget mundum iterum suis. sic
saecula excedunt.  semel, ergo, amici
     progredientes
ac simul cantamus, “Io, Triumphe!”
gestientes, et bis, “Io, Triumphe!”
dicimus caeloque feremus alto
     nobile nomen
Princetoniensis, memores sodalum
atque honesti.  nunc ego “Ave,” beati,
non “Vale” dicam, atque “Fidelitate
     semper amate.”

Salutation

Given in the Academic Assembly of Princeton
In New Jersey on the 31st of May
In the year 2011
In the 264th Academic Year

Salutatory Poem

With what measures, what beginnings, loving
Mother, should I greet your progeny?
    Bless this endeavor, Muses, so that I
        don’t stumble blushing over untried feet!
Glorious tiller of harvests for us
and prosperous leader: you, good
    guardian, I first salute, for all things
        flourish under your guiding light; nor
Will I pass by in silence all of you who
wisely protect our kindly mother, always
   and for all.  Our professors too I praise
        as a grateful daughter, and I sing
Of their scholarship, which nurtures their students
with special kindness, excellently, attentively,
    patiently: your devotion to us
        is great, your attachment deep and learned.
And you, our parents: this morning you believe
that we are scholars, since you have seen us
    take pleasure in my little song: behold,
        now we fulfill your honorable hopes.

Now, in rather humbler meters
I address you candidly, friends:
forgive me for being highfalutin just now –
I was told to sing in a serious manner.
But now, naughty Muses, reveal far and wide
all the various indiscretions of this class (Ha!):
the lectures we’ve ditched, the parties
of raging, Bacchic licentiousness we’ve thrown,
the long nights of shameful love, and how many
and with whom we spent them –
What now?  Getting annoyed with me?
Don’t pretend you’re a bunch of saints or innocents –
and why fear?  There’s no way at all
your parents can understand what I’m saying.
And if you’ve really never done any of these –
Great Hercules!  I say only this to you: “Miserable wretch!”
Cherish the memory of your foibles
as well as your success, o friends
(not that our Mother was ever grudging with success):
She knows all, but forgives: Real Life isn’t always like that.
What joy it has been to be a young tiger!
But the jealous Fates, friends, have given
each of us, alas, only a short time here.

Here the heat-bearing days will return;
beneath a crisp sky, Autumn will flourish
in its fiery foliage, and then soon hoary,
     freezing Winter
will be dissolved by Spring’s changes.  But we
do not return here; we, friends, will depart
from these gates, bearing far and wide, aflame
     with lofty hearts,
the standards of our learning: with her diverse progeny
our Mother again enriches the world.  So
the generations advance onward.  Marching once
    and only once, then, friends,
and all together, we sing, “Hurrah, Victory!”
exulting, and twice again say, “Hurrah, Victory!”
and will lift to heaven’s lofty arch
     the noble name
of Princeton, keeping each other close to our hearts,
ever forthright.  Blessed friends, I shall say “Hail,” not
“Farewell,” and this too: “With undying loyalty,
     love each other always.”

Categories

Follow SCS News for information about the SCS and all things classical.

Use this field to search SCS News
Select a category from this list to limit the content on this page.
The logo for Asterion. A wide oval with a black background filled with stars. In the middle is a red circle with a Greek meander pattern, and inside the circle text reads "Asterion: Neurodiverse Classics."

As an autistic classicist, one of the things I’ve always struggled with is social interaction. In class, I teach students about Bourdieu and habitus and cultural scripts, while all the time feeling that, whatever the cultural script of our time is, mine got lost in the mail. I’ve spent my life pretending (without much success) to understand people and the codes that underpin their actions. The easiest solution for me has always been to hide because, when I’m on my own, I’m not uncomfortable, awkward, or afraid.

But hiding sends the wrong message and models the wrong behavior, as I realized when my son was diagnosed with autism, too. How can you advise a child to pretend to be like everyone else, because difference makes them a target? How can you warn them that their honesty will make them an outcast, their sensitivities will make them vulnerable, and their hyperempathy will make them a victim? How can you commit to inclusion in your professional life while accepting exclusion in your personal life?

You can’t — or, at least, I couldn’t.

View full article. | Posted in on Tue, 01/18/2022 - 9:38am by .
A brightly colored manuscript page. On the left is calligraphy in Sanskrit; on the right is a woman in printed garb sitting in a carriage pulled by two white horses. She makes a gesture with her two palms press together. A black figure looks back at her.

Like many educators, I have found myself in an endless loop lately of thinking and rethinking my teaching principles and practices — a loop caused by the unprecedented teaching conditions the pandemic has brought upon us. Though I consider myself a thoughtful instructor, I admit that I have never thought so extensively, carefully, and critically about the purposes and desired outcomes of my teaching as I have in the months between March 2020 and now. Each week of each semester involves calibrating and recalibrating my courses, as I hope to meet the needs of my students and help them balance their lives within the classroom and without. I have become more attuned to the extramural realities that bear on my students’ learning, and as someone who works at a Hispanic-serving Institution, a desire for inclusivity increasingly informs the way I teach. My own institution just recently offered its first workshop on culturally responsive pedagogy, which provided me with many new tools for teaching in inclusive ways. Among other things, I realized that any kind of responsive pedagogy involves constant conversation with one’s colleagues, to generate, refresh, and fine-tune ways of teaching with a view toward inclusion and accessibility.

View full article. | Posted in on Sun, 01/09/2022 - 9:37pm by .
A Macbook sits on a wooden desk showing a Zoom screen filled with faces. Left of it, a turquoise mug sits on the desk.

To write about the Capitol Insurrection, as the one-year anniversary approached, I went back through my chat logs from January 6, 2021, in the interest of refreshing and confirming my memory. What I found, in lieu of any particularly meaningful conclusions, was a window into that day and how some friends and I were dealing with catastrophic events as they unfolded.

That day, I had a university meeting wedged between SCS panels, and I think I actually found the precise moment when I realized what was going on. That moment is a fairly profanity-laden series of messages with a very-online friend of mine, to whom I sent “So what the fuck is happening in DC?? I've been in meetings and the capitol building is being stormed??” followed by “i allegedly have another meeting right now and i am physically nauseous after having like a 5 minute break and seeing the news.”

In all my other group chats, things progressed about the same. Conversation about the SCS conference and pre-semester preparation, interrupted by a confused panic about what was happening on the news. A bunch of millennial classicists trying frantically to figure out where they can watch live news and wondering why all the afternoon panels weren’t canceled (though some were), processing anger and fear in countless group-chats and DMs.

View full article. | Posted in on Fri, 01/07/2022 - 12:48pm by .
A painting of Rome featuring a crowd of men fighting on a hill. Behind them is an obelisk, a column, and a toppled white marble statue of a nude man.

At 2:00 pm on January 6th, 2021, a mob made its way up the steps of the U.S. Capitol following a morning of brinkmanship, speeches, and speculation. I sat in my office at home, logged into a Zoom session, watching Twitter and a streaming news channel on one screen, all while pretending to be engaged with the beginning of an SCS Panel, “The Powers and Perils of Solitude in Greek Literature.”

At 2:20 or so, I was slated to begin a talk entitled “Being Human, Being Alone” as the Capitol was evacuated and our legislators were put under protection. At 2:24 pm, President Trump tweeted, “Mike Pence didn't have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!”

View full article. | Posted in on Thu, 01/06/2022 - 10:00am by .
A monochromatic stone statue of a man with short hair wrapped in a toga and sitting in a large chair. His right arm is leaning on the back of the chair, and his left hand holds a writing tablet on his lap. The base of the statue reads "SALLVSTIVS"

What do you read for an insurrection? Classics offers plenty of material for revolutionary bibliophiles: compilations for the budding revolutionary, handbooks for coups both successful and failed. The Capitol rioters certainly had their Classics before their eyes, as Curtis Dozier outlined shortly after the event: Caesar and XenophonVergil and Herodotus.

But in January 2021, I was reading Sallust—and an apt choice it was, too. Not because of what Sallust writes — Catiline’s attempt to overthrow the government or Marius’ attempt to change Roman institutions — but because of what he passes over. He was there at the swelling of the atmosphere that led to the burning of the Senate house on January 19th (what is it about Januaries?), 52 bce, during the funeral of Publius Clodius.

View full article. | Posted in on Wed, 01/05/2022 - 11:20am by .
New WCC logo reading WCC 50th, 1972-2022. Beige font on a dusty pink background.

The year was 1971. In the lobby of a hotel in Cincinnati, OH, a small group of early career faculty and graduate students, mostly women, met and decided to form a caucus. Frustrated by the lack of transparency, mentors, and opportunities in Classics both for women in the field and for those who studied women in antiquity, they wanted something different, both for themselves and for future generations. At the next year’s Annual Meeting of the American Philological Association (APA) in Philadelphia, PA, they made it official. The Women’s Classical Caucus (WCC) was born.

By phone, mail, and intermittent gatherings at regional conferences and the APA (now SCS), the founders and early members of this young caucus stayed connected and encouraged each other in its early decades to publish feminist scholarship and introduce to their departments new, revolutionary courses on “women in antiquity,” which received almost immediate backlash.

Fast forward 50 years, and it’s hard to imagine a time when women and feminist scholars were not a strong presence in the profession, whether publishing scholarship through the lens of feminist theory, teaching about ancient women at both the K-12 and university levels, or taking on leadership roles both in the SCS and in their local institutions.

View full article. | Posted in on Mon, 01/03/2022 - 10:14am by .

Every year at the annual meeting we hold the Career Networking event, a meeting that gives academics access to former classicists, historians, and archeologists who have made career shifts into new fields. They speak candidly about their transition, and are there to offer advice to anyone looking to change career paths. This year we have more networkers than in any year previous, with a broad range of fields and experiences represented.

We will hold our annual Career Networking event at this year's virtual AIA/SCS Annual Meeting on Saturday, January 8th, from 1:30 - 3:00 p.m. Pacific Time.

Please block off time to attend this extraordinarily helpful event. It'll be accessible through the digital meeting platform.

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Mon, 01/03/2022 - 9:01am by Erik Shell.

The AIA and SCS have made the difficult decision to switch our upcoming 2022 Annual Meeting to a virtual only event.  We had high hopes to once again have an in-person component to our meeting, but the rapid rise in Covid cases due to the Delta and Omicron variants have made that impossible to do safely.  While we are eager to see everyone in-person again, the overall health and safety of our attendees, staff, and hotel and meeting personnel take precedence. 

Since we were already planning to hold our meeting in a hybrid format the transition to a virtual only meeting will not be difficult.  We are using the same platform as last year and all sessions will be available through the virtual meeting platform.  Details on how to access it will be emailed out to all attendees next Monday (January 3).

If you had been planning to attend in person, please contact the Hilton to cancel your reservation.  We will be reaching out to all in-person registrants following the meeting regarding refunds for the difference in registration rates. 

We hope everyone is staying safe and healthy and look forward to seeing you online during our virtual meeting. 

View full article. | Posted in SCS Announcements on Wed, 12/29/2021 - 2:17pm by Helen Cullyer.

SCS is pleased to announce the following winners of the 2021 excellence in teaching awards. Please join us in congratulating the winners!

Excellence in Teaching at the K-12 Level

Jessie Craft (Reagan High School, WSFCS school district)

Mathew Olkovikas (Pinkerton Academy)

Margaret Somerville (Friends' Central School)

Excellence in Teaching at the College and University Level

Deborah Beck (University of Texas at Austin)

Richard Ellis (University of California, Los Angeles)

Wilfred Major (Louisiana State University)

Brett Rogers (University of Puget Sound)

View full article. | Posted in Awards and Fellowships on Mon, 12/27/2021 - 9:09am by Helen Cullyer.
Oil painting of a white man sitting in a large chair facing left with a dissatisfied expression. He wears a white toga with red drapery over his left arm, a crown, a gold cuff bracelet, and short curly hair. A tiger sits between his legs.

It is a truth universally acknowledged that humor ages poorly. Jokes tend to be topical, and to be based on the social expectations of a particular group at a particular moment. The deterioration of humor over time is often a matter of changing contexts as well as changing tastes: ideas that once made a coherent joke cease to fit together.

View full article. | Posted in on Mon, 12/27/2021 - 8:34am by .

Pages

Latest Stories

Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings
Classical Studies at Boston University and Classics, BU Center for the Humani
Conferences, Lectures, and Meetings
The Classics Program at Hunter College is pleased to announce the 84th Joseph

© 2020, Society for Classical Studies Privacy Policy