Sivut kuvina

Non mihi refpondent veteres in carmina vires.

Plectra dolore tacent: muta dolore lyra eft.
Lesbides æquoreæ, nupturaque nuptaque proles;
Lesbides, Eolia nomina dicta lyra;

Lefbides, infamem quæ me feciftis amata;
Definite ad citharas turba venire meas.
Abftulit omne Phaon, quod vobis ante placebat.
(Me miferam! dixi quam modo pene, meus!)
Efficite ut redeat: vates quoque vestra redibit.
Ingenio vires ille dat, ille rapit.
Ecquid ego precibus? pectufne agrefte movetur?
An riget? et Zephyri verba caduca ferunt?
Qui mea verba ferunt, vellem tua vela referrent.
Hoc te, fi faperes, lente, decebat opus.

Sive redis, puppique tuæ votiva parantur




Munera; quid laceras pectora nostra mora? Solve ratem: Venus orta mari, mare præftet eunti. Aura dabit curfum; tu medo solve ratem.


Alas! the Mufes now no more inspire,


Untun'd my lute, and filent is my lyre.
My languid numbers have forgot to flow,
And fancy finks beneath the weight of woe.
Ye Lesbian Virgins, and ye Lesbian dames,
Themes of my verse, and objects of my flames,
No more your groves with my glad fongs fhall ring,
No more these hands fhall touch the trembling string:
My Phaon's fled, and I thofe arts refign
(Wretch that I am, to call that Phaon mine!)
Return, fair youth, return, and bring along
Joy to my foul, and vigour to my fong:
Abfent from thee, the poet's flame expires;
But ah! how fiercely burn the Lover's fires?



Gods! can no pray'rs, no fighs, no numbers move One favage heart, or teach it how to love?


The winds my pray'rs, my fighs, my numbers bear,
The flying winds have lost them all in air!
Or when, alas! fhall more aufpicious gales
To these fond eyes reftore thy welcome fails!
If you return-ah why these long delays?
Poor Sappho dies while careless Phaon stays.
O launch the bark, nor fear the wat❜ry plain;
Venus for thee fhall smooth her native main.



O launch

VER. 236. My Phaon] Fenton tranflated this epiftle, but with a manifeft inferiority to Pope. He added an original poem of his own, an epistle of Phaon to Sappho; which appears to be one of the feeblest in the collection of his poems, among which fome are truly excellent. WARTON.

Ipfe gubernabit refidens in puppe. Cupido:
Ipfe dabit tenera vela legetque manu,
Sive juvat longe fugiffe Pelafgida Sappho ;
(Non tamen invenies, cur ego digna fuga.)
[O faltem miferæ, Crudelis, epiftola dicat:
Ut mihi Leucadiæ fata petantur aquæ.]


O launch thy bark, fecure of profp❜rous gales;
Cupid for thee fhall spread the fwelling fails.
If you will fly-(yet ah! what cause can be,
Too cruel youth, that you should fly from me?)

If not from Phaon I must hope for ease,

Ah let me feek it from the raging feas:
To raging feas unpity'd I'll remove,

And either cease to live or cease to love!



VER. 253. Cupid for thee] This image is very inferior to the original, as it is more vague and general: the picture in the ori ginal is ftrikingly beautiful. The circumftances which make it fo, are omitted by Pope:


Ipfe gubernabit refidens in puppe Cupido,

Ipfe dabit tenera vela legetque manu.”

This would form a beautiful fubje&t for Mr. Flaxman, who has made fuch correct, elegant, and claffical drawings for Homer.

THIS Epifle is tranflated by Pope with elegance, and much excels any Dryden tranflated in the volume he publifhed; feveral of which were done by fome "of the mob of gentlemen that wrote with eafe;" that is, Sir C. Scroop, Caryl, Pooly, Wright, Tate, Buckingham, Cooper, and other carelefs rhymers. Lord Somers tranflated Dido to Æneas, and Ariadne to Thefeus. A good tranflation of thefe epiftles is as much wanted as one of Juvenal; for out of fixteen satires of that poet, Dryden himself tranflated but fix. We can now boast of happy translations in verfe of almost all the great poets of antiquity, whilft the French have been poorly contented with only profe tranflations of Homer and Horace; which, says Cervantes, can no more resemble the original than the wrong fide of tapestry can reprefent the right. The inability of the French tongue to exprefs many Greek or Roman ideas with facility and grace is here visible; but the Italians have Horace tranflated by Pallavacini, Theocritus by Ricolotti and Salvini, Ovid by Anguillara, the Æneid, admirably well, in blank verfe, by Annibal Caro, and the Georgics, in blank verfe alfo, by Daniello, and Lucretius by Marchetti.

One of the most learned commentaries on any claffic is that of Mezeriac on the epiftles of Ovid. It seems ftrange he should have employed fo much labour on fuch a writer. The very beft life of fop is alfo by Mezeriac; a book fo fcarce, that neither Bentley nor Bayle had feen it when they firft wrote on fop. It was reprinted in the Memoires de Literature of M. de Sallengre 1717, tom. i. p. 87. This is the author whom Malherbe, with his ufual bluntnefs, asked, when he published his edition of Diophantus, "If it would lessen the price of bread?"

There was a very early translation of the epiftles of Ovid afcribed to Shakespear, which error, like many others, has been rectified by that able and accurate enquirer, Dr. Farmer, who has fhewn that they were tranflated by Thomas Heywood, and inferted in his Britaine's Troy, 1609.

One of the beft imitations of Ovid is a Latin epistle of the Count Balthafar Caftiglione, author of the celebrated Courtier, addreffed to his abfent wife. WARTON.


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