Chapter 21. Asterix and Caesars Gift

Rene Goscinny

Albert Uderzo

English Translations: Anthea Bell & Derek Hockridge


When Caesar offers a gift, be suspicious...very suspicious. Upon his release from the Roman Army, Tremensdelirius gets the deed to Asterix's little Gaulish village. But he swaps it for a drink in the tavern--and soon the owner and his family are off to claim their prize. What's going to happen? Surprisingly, Asterix has a different view of the situation than his friends.

Table 21.1. Asterix and Caesars Gift - Annotations

Page, Panel Comment
Page 1, Panel 1 Vinum et musica laetificant cor = Wine and music make the heart merry. A variation on the proverbial "vinum bonum laetificat cor hominis"; De mortuis nil nisi bonum = About the dead [say] nothing but good. (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, I.70)
Page 1, Panel 4 Demob = retirement from the military
Page 3, Panel 1 Legio expedita! = Attention! (literally "Legion, to order!")
Page 4, Panel 1 Qui habet aures audiendi audiat = "Let he that hath ears to hear, let him hear" (Mark 4:9)
Page 27, Panel 5 I am more an antique Roman than a Dane ( Shakespeare, Hamlet I.ii.355)
Page 27, Panel 6 Fat, and scant of breath (Hamlet V) (Fat means sweating) O! that this too solid flesh would melt (Hamlet I.ii.129) Give us the foils! (Hamlet V.ii.3.0).
Page 27, Panel 7 A hit, a very palpable hit. (Hamlet V.ii.295)
Page 27, Panel 8 The rest is silence. (Hamlet V.ii.372)
Page 27, Panel 9 Zorro cuts a Z on the chests of his enemies

Table 21.2. Asterix and Caesars Gift - Names

Name (in order of appearance) Comment
Tremensdelirious Delirious tremens: shaking condition caused by overdosing on alcohol. The "DTs".
Egganlettus Egg and lettuce
Angina Angina: a localized spasm of pain
Influenza Influenza: the flu virus
Orthapedix Orthapedix: From Orthopaedics (British) or Orthopedics (American) - the treatment of foot problems. Orthopedix is a caricature of the French actor André Alerme.
Dithyrambix Dithyramb: any wildly emotion speech or writing
Tonsillitus Tonsillitis: inflammation of the tonsils