Astronomy in the Golden Age


Ovid, Fasti 1.295-314 (January 3rd):

What prevents me from speaking of the stars, and how each one rises and falls? That was a part of my promise. Happy souls, who learned these things first, and whose care was to climb into the heavenly houses! It is credible that they lifted their heads above human vices and places equally. Venus and wine did not break their lofty hearts, nor did the business of the forum or the labor of the camp; nor did trifling ambition and glory covered in paint and the ravenous hunger for tremendous wealth vex them. They moved the distant stars closer to our eyes, and they subjected the ether to their minds. Thus is heaven sought: not so that Olympus can bear the weight of Ossa, nor so that Pelion’s summit can touch the highest stars. Under their guidance, we too will mark off the sky, and…

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