In cibo et potu temperans, sed in potu temperantior,
quippe qui ebrietatem in qualicumque homine, nedum in se
ac suis, plurimum abominabatur. Cibo
enim non adeo abstinere poterat, ut saepe quereretur noxia corpori suo esse ieiunia. Convivabatur rarissime, et hoc praecipuis
tantum festivitatibus, tunc tamen cum magno hominum numero. Cena cotidiana quaternis tantum ferculis
praebebatur, praeter assam,
quam venatores veribus
inferre solebant, qua ille libentius quam ullo alio 5 cibo vescebatur. Inter cenandum aut aliquod acroama
aut lectorem audiebat. Legebantur ei historiae et antiquorum res gestae. Delectabatur et libri sancti
Augustini, praecipue De civitate Dei.
Erat eloquentia copiosus et exuberans poteratque quicquid vellet
apertissime exprimere. Nec patrio
tantum sermone contentus, etiam peregrinis
linguis ediscendis operam impendit; in quibus Latinam ita didicit ut aeque
illa ac patria linqua orare sit solitus, Graecam vero melius intellegere quam
pronuntiare poterat. Adeo 10 quidem facundus erat
ut etiam dicaculus
appareret. Artes liberales
studiosissime coluit, earumque doctores plurimum veneratus magnis adficiebat
(Excerpts from Einhard's Vita Karoli Magni, available online here: ch. 24 and ch. 25)
1. What do we
learn of Charlemagne in line 1?
He spent some time drinking every day.
He was equally restrained in food and
He was more restrained in drinking than
He often fasted.
2. What did
Charlemagne hate most of all (lines 1-2)?
excess in himself and his own people
3. What do we
learn of Charlemagne in lines 2-3?
He was often asked his opinion on fasting.
He could not refrain from overeating.
Fasting had strengthened his body.
He complained of fasting’s effects on his
4. What was
Charlemagne’s attitude toward feasts
He feasted if there were a large number
The presence of a large number of people made it
unlikely that he would feast.
He was renowned for giving such great
Feasting was an occasion to gather great numbers
5. How did
Charlemagne obtain his roast meat
He hunted and roasted it himself.
only at inns when served to him
6. What role did
literature play in Charlemagne’s life
He often read during meals.
He read it between meals
He heard it when no other entertainment
He had it read at meals.
7. In broadest terms, what was
literary genre (lines 6-7)?
8. For what skill
was he particularly noted (line 7 on)?
9. On what word
does sermone depend (line 8)?
patrio (line 8)
tantum (line 8)
contentus (line 9)
impendit (line 9)
10. Of what had Charlemagne made a special study
geography of his fatherland
11. How extensive was Charlemagne’s knowledge of
Greek (lines 9-10)?
He could read but not speak them.
He knew a little Latin and less Greek.
His Latin was equal to his native
Greek was not so strong.
He did not understand Greek, but spoke
12. What people did he particularly honor
teachers of humanities