Captious, yet kind; pleasant but testy too;
I cannot bear to part, or live with you.

[Difficillis facillis, iucundus acerbus es idem:
Nec tecum possum vivere nec sine te.]

Marcus Valerius Martial
Martial (AD c.39-c.103) Spanish Roman poet, satirist, epigrammatist [Marcus Valerius Martialis]
Epigrams [Epigrammata], Book 12, epigram 47 (12.47) (AD 101) [tr. Pott & Wright (1921)]

Sometimes given as 12.46. Ker notes the second line is borrowed from Ovid, Amores, 3.9.

(Source (Latin)). Alternate translations:

In all thy humours whether grave or mellow,
Thou'rt such a touchy, testy, pleasant fellow;
Hast so much wit and mirth, and spleen about thee
There is no living with thee, or without thee.
[Addison, The Spectator #68 (18 May 1711)]

Such stiffness, ease; such sweets and sours about thee!
I cannot live, or with thee, or without thee.
[tr. Elphinston (1782), Book 12, #126]

Difficult and easy, churlish and pleasing; you are all of these, and yet one person;
there is no living with thee, nor without thee.
[tr. Amos (1858), ch. 3 #85]

Thou'rt merry, sad; easy, and hard to please;
Nor with nor from thee can I live at ease.
[tr. Wright (<1859)]

You are at once morose and agreeable, pleasing and repulsive.
I can neither live with you, nor without you.
[tr. Bohn's Classical (1859)]

Captious, yet complaisant, sweet and bitter too,
I cannot with thee live, nor yet without thee.
[ed. Harbottle (1897)]

Difficult and easy-going, pleasant and churlish, you are at the same time:
I can neither live with you nor without you.
[tr. Ker (1919)]

O sweet and bitter in a breath,
O genial comrade, crusty friend,
Without thee life had sudden end,
With thee to dwell were sudden death.
[tr. Francis & Tatum (1924), #662]

There's something easy, difficult,
Hard and soft about you
All the time. I cannot live
With you or without you.
[tr. Marcellino (1968)]

Amiable but unco-operative,
Sweet-natured but a grouse --
Though I can't live without you, I can live
Without you in the house.
[tr. Michie (1972)]

You are difficult and easy, pleasant and sour; and I can't live with you nor yet without you.
[tr. Shackleton Bailey (1993), 12.46]

You're difficult and easy, sweet and tart.
I cannot live with you, nor live apart.
[tr. McLean (2014), 12.46]

Difficult or easy, pleasant or bitter, you are the same you:
I cannot live with you -- or without you.

Added on 19-Nov-21 | Last updated 27-Nov-23
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