Carven ivory have I none;
No golden cornice in my dwelling shines;
Pillars choice of Libyan stone
Upbear no architrave from Attic mines;
'Twas not mine to enter in
To Attalus' broad realms, an unknown heir,
Nor for me fair clients spin
Laconian purples for their patron's wear.
Truth is mine, and Genius mine;
- rich man comes, and knocks at my low door: Favour'd thus, I ne'er repine,
- weary out indulgent Heaven for more: In my Sabine homestead blest,
- should I further tax a generous friend? Suns are hurrying suns a-west,
- newborn moons make speed to meet their end. You have hands to square and hew
Vast marble-blocks, hard on your day of doom,
Ever building mansions new,
- thinking of the mansion of the tomb. Now you press on ocean's bound,
Where waves on Baiae beat, as earth were scant;
Now absorb your neighbour's ground,
- tear his landmarks up, your own to plant. Hedges set round clients' farms
Your avarice tramples; see, the outcasts fly,
Wife and husband, in their arms
Their fathers' gods, their squalid family.
Yet no hall that wealth e'er plann'd
Waits you more surely than the wider room
Traced by Death's yet greedier hand.
- strain so far? you cannot leap the tomb. Earth removes the impartial sod
Alike for beggar and for monarch's child:
Nor the slave of Hell's dark god
Convey'd Prometheus back, with bribe beguiled.
Pelops he and Pelops' sire
Holds, spite of pride, in close captivity;
Beggars, who of labour tire,
Call'd or uncall'd, he hears and sets them free.
This site is dedicated to bringing you information about the wonder that was the Roman Empire and how its legacy still shapes our history, our language, and the foundations of our society and its institutions. The Roman Empire endures!
The City of Rome was traditionally founded in 753 B.C. by our calendar. The Romans measured their calendar from the foundation of the City, or "Anno urbis conditae". By their calendar, today is Anno Urbis ("The Year of the City") 2773.
The Roman Empire at its greatest extent comprised most of western Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. Larger than even most modern nations, the empire was held together by a network of roads, a common language, and most of all a culture which still today exerts a powerful influence on our society and institutions, over 1600 years after the fall of Rome. No other empire or civilization has had such a lasting and significant impact on the modern world.