Following up yesterday's "hate rhyme" with a rhyme of, well, mild dislike, I suppose:
Written circa 1680. Tradition has it that Brown, while a student at Christ Church, got into some sort of trouble and was taken to the dean, Dr John Fell. Brown was set to be sent down from Oxford, but Dr. Fell decided to waive the expulsion if Brown could translate, extempore, a Martial epigram. The above poem is the result; unfortunately, history does not record whether or not Brown's creativity was sufficient to stay the dean's wrath. The original Martial epigram follows: Non amo te, Sabidi, nec possum dicere quare; Hoc tantum posso dicere, non amo te. -- Martial Brown's translation is an excellent one, succinct and faithful to the original (which reads something like this in English: "I don't like you, Sabidius, and I can't say why; all I can say is I don't like you"). More to the point, it's uncannily catchy; what ought by rights to be a snatch of doggerel has achieved immortality in a thousand and one compilations of quotable quotes. I wish I knew how he did it... thomas. [Minstrels Links] Poem #876, I Wish My Tongue were a Quiver -- Louis McKay Poem #856, Epigram -- Martial [Biographies] John Fell: 1625-86, English clergyman. He was dean of Christ Church, Oxford, and bishop of Oxford. While at Oxford, he initiated an extensive building program and promoted the development of the Oxford Univ. Press. His chief literary work was his critical edition (1682) of St. Cyprian. He is probably best remembered today as the subject of Tom Brown's jingle "I do not love thee, Dr. Fell, The reason why I cannot tell; But this alone I know full well, I do not love thee, Dr. Fell." -- The Columbia Encyclopaedia, at www.bartleby.com Martial: See the epigram above. Tom Brown: Couldn't find anything, sorry.