De Navi


Martha Marchina

Original Text

Marchina, Martha. Marthae Marchinae virginis Neapolitanae Musa posthuma. 1701, p. 86.


Quae D. Martham, & Socios Massiliam advexit.1

Aspicis ut certo puppis secat aequora cursu,       Et duce divino flamine carpit iter? Aether2 pelle tuis audacem ex orbibus Argon,3       Haec auro Phryxi4 nobiliora vehit

1 This poem concerns the New Testament apostles and siblings Mary, Martha, and Lazarus of Bethany. Following church tradition, the siblings were set adrift in the Mediterannean in a boat which lacked oars, rudder, or sails. A divine wind carried them to Marseilles, where they proceeded to convert the local population. 2 Vocative. 3 A reference to the Argo, the famous ship of the mythological Jason and the Argonauts. 4 A reference to the Golden Fleece sought by Jason and the Argonauts. According to Greek mythology, Phrixus and his sister Helle escaped from Thessaly by riding on the back of a golden ram. Helle fell off, giving her name to the Hellespont, but Phrixus arrived safely in Colchis. He proceeded to sacrifice the ram and keep its fleece.


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