In a city of Asia Minor The Canon
The tidings of the issue of the naval battle of Actium,
were certainly unexpected.
However, we are not obliged to compose another document
The name alone has to be altered. At the closing lines,
instead of the phrase: Having delivered the Romans
from the wicked Octavius,
the counterfeit Cesar,
we shall now say: Having delivered the Romans
from the wicked Antony...
All the text fits admirably
To the famous victor,
who is unequalled in every warlike enterprise,
most admirable in great affairs of State,
To Antony, for whose success,
the City offered prayers fervently,
(here, as we said, we substitute, Cesar,
deeming it, from Zeus, the greatest boon
To the powerful protector of the Greeks,
who observes, with honour, Greek customs,
and is beloved in every Greekland,
who deserves signal praise,
whose actions are worthy of a lengthy record
couched in the Greek tongue, in prose and in verse;
in the Greek tongue which in the vehicle of Fame,
and so forth, and so forth. It all fits admirably.

Translated by George Valassopoulo

(Poèmes de C.P. Cavafy, Échanges 5, Décembre 1931)

- Original Greek Poem

- Translation by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard