Martial 2.8: Si qua videbuntur

by Tom Gardner

Si qua videbuntur chartis tibi, lector, in istis
sive obscura nimis sive Latina parum, ,
non meus est error: nocuit librarius illis
dum properat versus adnumerare tibi.
quod si non ilium sed me peccasse putabis,
tune ego te credam cordis habere nihil.
“Ista tamen mala sunt.” quasi nos manifesta negemus!
haec mala sunt, sed tu non meliora facis.

If things in your pages seem to you, reader,
either too obscure or unsatisfactory Latin
the mistake isn’t mine: the scribe did the harm
while hurrying to count out the lines for you.
But if you suppose that I, not he, blundered,
I believe you have no sense.
“Yet those things of yours are bad.” As though I would deny what is plain!
These are bad, but you don’t do any better.