Iuno suspectam Semelen, Cadmi et Harmoniae filiam, cum haberet, quod cum Iove concubuisset, in anum conversa est, ut se fallacia sine invidia cuiusquam ulcisceretur; ad eam venit persuadetque ei, ne alio Iovem apparatu recipiat ad cubile, quam solitus sit apparere Iunoni, quo ut illius auctoritas gravis, proinde ipsius concubitus insignis esset. quod cum impetravisset a cupiente, deus instructus tonitribus ac fulminibus domum Semeles ingressus est: tecta eius deceptae optatis flammis adurit Liberumque conceptum utero gravidae incendio eripit ac femore insuit suo. postea conpletis mensibus nymphis, quae Nysam montem Indiae perfrequentaret, clam tradidit nutriendum.
--Lactantius Placidus, Qui dicitur Narrationes Fabularum Ovidiarum Liber 3 fabula 3
When Juno suspected that Semele [the daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia] was having an affair with Jupiter, she tried to get revenge without getting her own hands dirty. She turned into an old woman, went up to Semele and persuaded her to get Jupiter to visit her in the same form that he used whenever he visited Juno.
When Semele got Jupiter to do so, Jupiter entered Semele’s home with thunder and lightning. The poor girl got what she wanted, and her home went up in smoke. Jupiter took the unborn child [Bacchus / Liber / Dionysus] from her charred womb and sewed it into his own thigh. When it was time for Bacchus to be born, Jupiter secretly handed him over to the nymphs that hung out in the Indian Mt. Nysa so they could raise him.
Name: Lactantius Placidus
Date: 5th or 6th century CE
Works: Abridgement of Ovids’ Metamorphoses
Commentary on Statius’ Thebaid
Little is known about this Christian author, but he is known for his commentary on Statius’ Thebaid and an abridgement of Ovid’s Metamorphoses.
LATE LATIN / BYZANTINE