Sivut kuvina

Descending now to ocean's secret bed,
They in his gully deeps conceal their head.

As when along the beech, succinct for play,
To toss the flying ball the nereids stray, 1110
From hand to hand the sphere unerring flies,
Nor ever on the ground inglorious lies;
The sisters thus, with coadjurant force,
Hijji o'er the surge impel the vessel's course:
From secret shelves her wave dasti'd suits they

Though sturdy billows strong against them strove.
On a tall fragment that o'erlook'd the stood,
His shoulder resting on his hammer, (food
The sooty god. and from her starry skies
Juno beheld the scene with stedfast eyes. IliO
Her hand around Minerva's neck (he threw;
For much Saturnia trembled at the view.

Long as the vernal funs protract the light,
So long in Argo's cause the nymphs unite.
Propitious to their labours sprung the breeze,
And the free vessel shot across the seas.
Trinacria's verdant meads they soon survey.
Where graze thy herds, illustrious god of day.
Juno's commands obey'd, the watery train,
Like diving mews, explore the deeps again. 1130
Coasting along, the bleating flocks they hear,
And herds loud bellowing strike their listening

sol's youngest daughter, Pharthusa, leads
The bleating stocks along the dewy meads;
Propp'd on her silver crook the rr.aid reclin'd;
A stouter ssiss, with brazen ringlets join'd,
I anipetie takes; whose herds the heroes see
Slunk to the (rock, or browsing on the lea.
Of sable hue no cattle you behold;
Miikwhite are all, and tipp'd their horns with
gold. 114°

They pal's'd these meads by day; at day's decline
'] hey brush M with pliant oars the yielding brine.
At length Aurora's all.reviving ray
Kcdden'd the waves, and show their certain way.

A senile isle towers o'er the Ionian tide,
Ceraunia nam'd; the land two bays divide.
Fame fays, ^forgive lie, muse, while I unveil,
Reluctant too, a legendary tale),
A fickle lies conceal'd within this land,
With which rasti Saturn's mutilating hand IJ50
His father castrated; for Ceres' aid
Others asfeit this rured sickle made,
For Ceres once, with love of Macris fir'd.
To this tam'd isle, her favourite scat, retir'd.
The Titan* here she taught her arms to wield,
And crop the bearded harvest of the field.
This island hence, nurse cf Phxacian swains,
'i h' expressive name of Dnpane obtains.
From mangled ITranus's blood they trace
The source inglorious cf Phseacia's rece. 1160

Trinacria left, and numerous peri!- past, Her heaven-protected Argo moors at last, The heroes disembark'd Alcinciin hails, And ot their festive sacrifice regales. Mirth nnremitted throuijli the city runs, As though they welcorr.'d home their darling sons. 1 he godlike guests their social parr sustain, Jojgus as though ;hcy press'd Hxmciiia's plain:

But ere that distant plain delights their view, The chiefs must buckle on their arms anew. 1170 For, lo! those Colchians who adventurous stray'd Through deeps unknown, had enter'd undifmay'd The dire Cyanean rocks, here throng the coast, And wait th' arrival of the Grecian host. The forfeit maid should Argo's crew refuse, Vv'ar in each sad disastrous shape ensues. Arm'd and refolv'd they threaten instant fight, And future sleets t' assert their monarch's right. But king Alcinous interpos'd his aid, And, ere they rulh'd to tight their wrath allay'd. Arcte's knee the suppliant virgin press'd, 1181 And thus th' associate band and queen addrefs'd: 'O queen,' exdaim'd she,' lend thy timely aid 'To save from Colchian bands a suffering maid. 'With ruffian rage to bear me hence they come, 1 And to my wrathful sire conduct me home. 'Thou know'st, if one, like me, of human kind, 'How prone to err is man's unstable mind. 'Deem me no stave to lust's usurping pow'r; 'Prudence forsook me in the needful hour. 1190 1 Be witness fun, and thou, whose every rite 'Is wr.ipp'd, dire Hecate, in fable night, 'How I reluctant left my native home, 1 And with rude foreigners abhorr'd to roam. 'Fear wiug'd my flight; and, having once trans• gress'd,

'To flee I juds'd my last resource and best.

* Still have I liv'd, as with my father, chaste, 'My spotless zone fast girded to my waist.

'Oh: may my tale, fair princess, claim thy tears; 'Oh! teach thy lord compassion as he hears, lie* 'On thee may all th'immortal gods bestow 'Beauty and life, exempt from age and woe; 'Cities, that need no bold invaders dread,

* And a fair progeny to crown thy bed.'

In tears she spoke: then to each gallant chief Told in these plaintive strains her tale of grief:

'Low at your feet, ye warriors, suppliant view 'A princess doom'd to wretchedness for you. 'Yok'd were the bulls, and, desperate as they 'rose, UOff 'Crush'd by my aid were hosts of giant-foes.

* Yes, soon Hæmonia the rich prize will fee,

1 And boast of conquests which she owes tome.

* ?*'Iy country I, my parents, palace left,

'To pine through life, of all its joys bereft; 'But gave to yon, a base ungrateful train, 'To fee your country and your friends again. 'Spoil'd of my beauty's bloom by fate severe, 'In endless exile must I languish here. 'Revere your oaths; Erynnis' vengeance dread, 'Who heaps her curses on the perjur'd head: 'Dread heaven's sure wrath, if, to my fire re'stor'd, »«> 'My stiame or ruin wait his desperate word. 'No sheltering shrine, no fortress near, I fly 'To yon alone, on yonr defence rely. 1 Yet why on you? who, merciless and mute, 'Have heard my sries, nor seconded my suit; 'Unmov'd have seen me lift my suppliant hand 'To the kind princess of this foreign land, 'Elate with hope the golden fleece to gain, j ' Colchos oppes'd you, and hn king Hi Vain 5

'But fearful now the battle so renew,' 1231 1 Vt dread detachments, nor will fij;ht with few.' She said; and all who heard her suppliant moan.

Chcer'd her sad heart, and check'dthe rising groan.
£ich gallant man his brandish'd sptar display'd,
And vow'd assistance to the suffering maid,
Shook hi; drawn sword, a prelude to the fight,
Resolv'd on vengeance, and resolv'd on right.

Night now dispers'd the saint remains of day,
And all the slumbering world confess'd its sway:
Grateful its gloom to men with Coils opprtss'd;
Grateful to all but her, with sleep unbless'd. 1241
She, hapics* fair, her painful vigils kept;
Retorting still her griefs, she wateh'd and wept.

A< at the distaff toils th' industrious dame,
Whose frequent tears her orphan children claim.
All night she toils, while clinging round they

Wail their lost sire, and his return demand.
Swift down her cheek descends the silent tear:
So hard the lot fate destines her to bear! 1250
Like her's Medea's copious tears descent],
Such agonizing griefs her tortur'd bosom rend.
The royal pair retire with wonted state
From the throng'd city to their palace-gate.
On their sof: couch reclin'd, at evening's close,
Long conference held they on Medea's woes.
Thus to Alcincius the queen express'd
The kind suggestions of her pitying breast:
'Oh! may the Minyans, prince, thy savours
'share: 1259

1 Oh! shield from Colchian foes an injur'd fair.
'Not distant far Hxnionia'9 plains extend,
'And near our ifland Argo's frontiers end.
'But far remote Æeta reigns; his name
'Unknown to us, or faintly known by fame.
1 She, in whose sorrows now I bear a part,
'Hath to redress them, open'd all my heart.
'Let no rude Colchian bear her hence away,
1 Tu her sire's vengeance a devoted prey.
1 Her error this: the fiery bulls to quell,
'Fond and officious she prepar'd the spell. 127a
1 Augmenting then (as oft offenders will)
1 Her first with future errors, ill with ill,
1 Far from her native home, impress'd with dread,
'Far from her angry sire the damsel fled.
1 But bound is Jason by strong ties, fays fame,
'To wed the wanderer, and retrieve from shame.
4 Urge him not then, with many an added threat,
'His faith to violate, his oaths forget;
'Nor stimulate Æeta's wrath to rife: 1279
'Their daughters parents rigorousiy chastise.
1 Thus Pycteus, with parental zeal o'crcoine,
1 Compell'd his child Antiope to roam.
'Thus Danae, by her wrathful sire sceur'd,
'Tofs'd in the troubled deep distress endur'd.
'Nor long since Echetus, a wretch accurs'd,
'With brazen pint his daughter's eye-balls

1 Pent in a dungeon's awful gloom she pin'd, 'DoooS'd by her savage sire obdurate brass to 'grind.' [breast, She said: soft pity touch'd the sovereign's Who thus his supplicating queen, address'd; 1290

"In me, O queen, these heroes should descry, "For the fair sufferer's lake, a firm ally; "Soon should my arms the Colchian foes remove, 11 But I revere the just decrees of Jove. "Unsafe I deem Æeta to deride, "Who sways the sceptre with a monarch's pride; "Able, though distant, if averse from peace, "To scatter discord through the realms of Greece. "Hear my propose! then; which you, 1 trust, "And all who hear it, will applaud as just : 1300 "If still a virgin's spotless name she bear, "Safe to her sire's domains conduct the fair: "But if one bed the wedded pair contain, "I will not fever Hymen's silken chain. "forbid it, Heaven! that I in wrath expose . "Her sinless offspring to insulting foes."

He said, and sunk to rest: his sage resolves Anxious and oft the wakeful queen revolves. She rose: their princess' footstep heard, arise Her female train, and each her wants supplies.

'Go,' to her page apart Arete said, 'Bid Æson's valiant son the virgin wed. 'Bid him no more Alcinous' ears assail • With long entreaties, and a well known tale. 'Himself, unafle'd, his advocate will go, "And tender these conditions to the foe: 'If still the fair a spotless maid remain,

■ Soon shall she view her father's courts again: 'But, if a matron'shonour'd name she bear,

■ He will not separate the wedded pair.' 1320 She said: her herald, eager to convey

The royal message, sped without delay;
To Æson's son he told Arete's word,
And the kind counsels of her sovereign lord.
Hard by their ship, in glistering arms array'd,
Deep in the port of Hyllicus embay'd,
He spies tha chiefs, his embassy repeats,
And every gallant heart with transport beats.
They crown the goblets to the powers divine,
And drag th' accustom'd victims to the shrine:
Then for the pensive fair officious spread I33I
In a sequester'd grot the bridal bed.
Hither, in days of yore, fair Macris came,
Daughter of Aristæus, honour'd name!
He taught marflcind the virtues and the use
Of the bee's labours, and the olive's juice.
For, know, when Hermes infant Bacchus bore,
Snatch'd from the flames, to fair Eubcea's shore,
Macris embrae'd him with a mother's love,
And there, awhile, she nurs'd the seed of Jove,
And there with honey fed; till Juno's spite X34I
Far from Eubcea's isle compell'd her flight.
At length, of this Phæacian grot pofTct's'd,
She with vast opulence the natives bless'd.

To deck with honours due the bridal bed,
Around it wide the golden fleece was spread.
With sweetest flowers, that deck or dale or hill,
Th' assiduous nymphs their snowy bosoms fiiL
The golden fleece emits so bright a ray,
They shone all radiant as the star of day, 1350
Inspiring love: the prize though strong desire,
Prompts them to touch, with reverence they

These arc the daughters of the Ægean flood,
Those, Meletæum, haunt thy lofty wood.

From groves, from streams, at Juno's call they
To grace the nuptials t this godlike man. [ran,
The lacrcd Rrot, recorded itill hy fame,
Bears to »his day Media's honciv'd name.
Lor here the nympha, their veils around them

To nuptial joy* the happy lovers led: 1360

And every chief, to guard the blissful spot, i
Clad in bright armour, stood before the grot.
Lest hostile troops, with rude tumultuous noise,
Should force an entrance, and distract their joys.
Thus station'd, they protect the hallow'd ground,
Their festive brows with leafy chaplets crowu'd,
As Orpheus struck his tuneful lyre, they fung,
And Hymeneals round the grotto rung.
But in AlcinouY court the fair to wed,
O'er Jason's anxious mind disquiet spread: 1370
Full oft he wish'd lolcos' coast to gain,
And wed the virgin in his sire's domain;
Such too Medea's wish: but fate severe
Forc'd him to celebrate his nuptials here.
For pleasure unalloy'd we look in vain;
Pleasure to suffering man is mil'd with pain. -
Whether the Colchian foe had scorn'd or clos'd
With the just terms l'hxacia's prince propos'd,
Of this they doubted: mid' the mirthful scene
Fears, which these doubts suggested, intervene.

Aurora now her orient bcapis display'd, 1381 And piere'd the sullen night's surrounding shade.

The circling shores and new bespangled ground
Reflect her rays: the streets with noise resound.
The citizens and Colchians, who posscss'd
The distant coast, 3wake from balmy rest.
Impatient now his purpose to disclose,
To plead Medea's cause the monarch rose.
His hand sustain'd a sceptre's massy gold, 1389
Which kings deciding right were wont to hold.
Around their prince, in glistering arms array'd,
Phxacia's peers a seemly pomp display'd.
Eager on each adventurous chief to gaze,
A female troop beyond the city strays.
In festive bands the distant swains unite:
(For Juno had divulg'd the nuptial rite)
One from his fold a ram selected broujthr,
An heifer one, to feel the yoke untaught;
Flagons of wine some for libation bear:
The smoke of victims blacken'd all the air. I4C0
As women wont, the female train select
Their costly veils, with gay embroidery dfck'd:
Such golden toys, such trinkets they provide,
As on a nuptial day adorn the bride.
The comely chiefs their admiration won;
But more than all Æager's tuneful sin,
As lightly to the lyre's melodious found
Tripp'd the brisk dancer o'er the mcafur'd ground.
In concert full the virgin-choir prolong
The happy day with Hymeneal song. 1410
Here a fair band, collected in a ring,
Praises to thee, auspicious Juno, sing.
By thee infpir'd, disclos'd the royal dame
The friendly terms her prince was pleas'd to name.
Nor are the terms Akinoiis nahi'd difown'd:
(For now their faithful loves hath Hymen

True to his oath, he heard with Sx'd disdain
And deem'd Æeta's vengeful fury vain.

Soon as the Colchians law their purpose cross'i!,
Defeated all their schemes, their labour lost ; 1410
That to the sovereign's terms they must accede,
I Or quit his ports, and fail away with speed:
Dreading the monarch's wrath, submifs they try
To win his friendship, and commence ally.
Settling at last, long time the Colchian host
Dwelt with the natives on Phneacia's coast:
Till Bacchus' hated race from Corinth fled,
ixil'd these Colchi»n«, and the isle o'erspread.
They sought the neighbouring shores: in times
to come

Their sons emigrating explbr'd a home, 1439
Where far and wide extends th' lllyric coast,
And the Ccraunian hills in clouds are lost.
But these events, which now my muse engage,
Were late fulfill'd in some succeeding age.
Yet stiil, in Phoebus fane, uninjur'd stand
I'he altars raU'd by fair Medea's hand:
Some to she fates are pil'd with victims due,
Some to the nymphs their annual rites renew.
Towards the parting train the royal pair
Their generous love by costly gifts declare. I440
Twelve fair Ph.xacians, at the queen's commaad,
Conduct Medea to the sea-beat strand.

On the seventh morn with gently bieatiirj;

Fropitious Jove expanded Argo's fails;
Argo decreed fresh dangers to sustain,
Ere Greece beholds her gallant sons again.
Amhracia's bay had open'd to their view,
Betides Cuietes' land the galley flew.
The clustering isles, lichidanes, they pas-'d,
And Ptlops' distant realm beheld at last. I4JP
Nine tedious nights and days the vessel sweeps
The troubled surface of the Libyan decp«;
Till, driven hy rapid tides aud stnrms astray,
She m ar the Syrtes* quicksands plow'd her way:
Whirl'd in whose gulfy pools, their dtstin'd grave.
Nor fails nor oars the sinking galleys save.
Burst from its black ahjs«, the boiling flood
Up-hcaves its shaggy weeds, involv'd in shelve
of mud.

With the far-spreading spray the frnds arise:
But nought discern they here that creeps or flit".
The tide (which now retreats info the main, 1465
And now returns upon the beach again):
Far o'er the shore, impell'd with fury, (how
Alt Argo's finny keel expos'd to view.
1 hey disembark, and gaze with aching eyrs
On ridgy mountains lost amid the skies.
No grateful streams, no beaten paths appear,
No rural cot discern they far or near;
A death-like silence reign'd: around dismay'd
'His comrade each interrogating said: 147*
'What country this ? on what bleak clime at

'Have the rude tempests heaven-built Argo cast?
1 Oh! had we dar'd, devoid of vulgar fear,
'Our course undaunted through thole fragmenii
4 steer,

'Like heroes then (though Jove success deny . I
* We in the bold attempt had bravely died.

'What can »ur skill devise? the least delay 'It fatal here; the winds forbid our stay. 'How bleak and barren is the coast we tread! 'And what a desert waste is wide around us 'spread!'

He said; and, joining; in the loud lament, 1481 Aocatu* thus forbnded the event:

'What dire mishaps our gallant host befall'. 1 Thus by stern fate's decree we perish all! 'What woes await us on this desert cast, 4 If from the land awakes the furious blast! 1 For slimy seas my fight far off commands, 1 And whitening billows bursting o'er the lands. 1 And dreadfully had Argo's yawning sides, '489 1 Remote from shore, receiv'd the gushing tides, 1 Had net the surge which lifted her to hcav'n, 1 Foil on the pebbly beach the vessel driv'n. 1 But now the tide retiring quits the strand, 'And waves unfaithful skim the levell'd sand. 'Our projects baffled, and hope's cheerly dawn 1 From our expecting sight thus soon withdrawn, 1 Let other hands the pilot's art display, 1 And they who scar not danger steer the way. 1 But our joint labours Jove decrees to foil, 1 Nor will our native home reward our toil.' 15CO

He said; and all renown'd for naval skill, Close with his words, and wait th' impending ill. From every heart the vital motion fled. O'er every face a deadly paleness spread.

As when from street to street, in wild dismay, Affrighted mortals like pale spectres stray; liprcting wan, or plagues, or bursting rains, That deluge all the harvest of the plains: Or, as when statues drops of blood distil, And fancied bellowinga the temples fill; 151c The noon-day fun eclips'd involves in night TV astonifh'd world, and stars emit their light; Thus on the beach they stalk'd, a heartless clan! Like sweating statues, or like spectres wan. His feeble arm each round his comrade cast. Then funk into the sand to breathe his last, "Uttolv'd, as now the star of Hefper rose, To share the solace of united woes. S^me here, some there (elect their clay-cold bed, And round their shivering limbs their garments spread: Ijjo Refign'd to death, in midnight's sullen shade And at mid-day, here languishing they laid. Remote, Medea's fair attendants moan, [groan. Clicg rnuod their quetn, and groan return for

As when a nest, surcharg'd with callow young,
Falls from the lofty cliff to which it clung,
Th' unfearher'd brood by shrillest cries attest
T heir far-flown mother, and their ruin'd nest:
Ai on the banks Pactolus' streams bedew.
Melodious swans their dying notes renew;
The rivers gliding the rich vales among.
Bear on their silver streams the soothing song:
Thus they, their golden locks besnuar'd with

AU eight in plaintive elegies deplore.
Their toili yet incomplete the godlike band
Had now if nobly penfh'd 011 the sand,
Bet the bold, who guard the coast,
BcirM with pitying eye the drooping host;

Those nymphs, who, when jn glistering arm» ar.

ray'd, [maid*, Rush'd from the thunderer's brain the martial In needful hour their kind assistance gave, IJ41 And cleaned her infant-limbs in Triton's wave.

'Twas noon : o'er Libya's sands the god of day Darted the splendours of his fiercest ray. Full besore Jason stoodthe nymphs confesi'd. And gently from his head withdrew the vest. Sudden he starts, imprefs'd with silent dread, And from his fair protectors turns his head. They in compassion's mild address began To free from terrors vain the hopeless man : IJ50

'Why griev'st thou thusOh! bid thy sorrows * cease:

'We know thy coming's cause, the Golden Fleece. 'We know the various toils by land you bore; 'How toss'd on ocean, how distrels'd on shore, 'Terrestrial powers, for acts of friendship known, 1 We mske the shepherd's rural cares our own. 1 We, Libya's daughters and avengers, boast 'Our sway extended o'er the Libyan coast. 'Arise, nor sink beneath thy sorrow's weight;' 'But rouse thy fellows from their drooping state. 'When Amphitrite v/ith officious speed 1 Unreins from Neprune's car the fiery steed, 'Thy mother then with dureous care repay, 'Whole womb hath borne thee many a toilsome 'day.'

'Discharge this duty, and resiiil to Greece,

'Safe and triumphant with the Golden Fleece.*

They, and vanish'd: from his sandy bed Jason arole, and looking round he said;

1 Ye godlike powers, the desert plains who rove-, 'Ye fair, who tend the flocks, propitious prove. 'Those dark mysterious truths your tongues fore'told, IJ 71

'I go. if haply can my friends unfold. 'C'onvcn'd.njay they some prudent schemedevist, 'For in th' advice os numbers safety lies.*

He said : and, wading through the driven sand, Roiled with loud voice the sad desponding band. Thus while the lion his lost mate explores. The forests ring, earth trembles as he roars: Herdsmen and herds, o'erwhelm'd with equal fear, All mute and trembling deem destruction near. But grateful to the host was Jason's call j No fears it cherish'd, but gave hope to all. Yet with dejected looks the heroes meet. Beside the female train to each his feat He near the shore assign'd; in order due His wondrous tale relates, and cheers the pensive ctew:

'Attend, my friends: three virgin forms, whs 'claim [came.

'From heaven their race, to sooth my sorrows

'Their shoulders round were shaggy goat-skins 'cast, '1589

'Which, low descending, girt their slender waili.

< High o'er my head they stood j with gentle haod

• My vesture rai>'d,and gave this dread command:

• That I with speed my piteons bed forsake, 1 And, risen, haste my comrades to awake.

■ f hat mindful we our mother's cares repay,

• V/liufe womb sustained ui many a toilsome day, * When Amphittite with officious speed

* Unreins from Neptune's car the fiery steed. 'Long have I fought this wonder to explain,

■ And still revolving I revolve in vain. isieo 'In the bold name of heroines they boast, 'Daughters and guardians they of Lybia's coast.

* Known to theft nymphs are all the toils we bore

* On the rough ocean arid the faithless shore.

* Nor staid they long; but, sudden from my view

* Their radiant forms an ambient cloud withdrew.'
He said: on every face sat boding fears;
When, In! a portent greater far appear;.
Fierce from the foamy deep, of wond'rous size,
Springs an huge horse; his mane expanded flies.
From his strong fides he shakes th' adherent

spray, isill
Then towards the coast directs his rapid way.
Skill'd in whate'er this prodigy portends,
With pleasure Peleus thus consoles his friends:

■ Now by his consort's hand re leas'd I fee 'The car of Neptune, and his horses free.

* A mother's name for I predict in vain)

* Argo may boast ; she feels a mother's pain. "Her prt-gnar.t womb a troop of heroes hears, 'And endless perils for their safety shares. 1610

* Come, let us now our boasted strength display,

■ And on *»ur shoulders bear our ship away.

* Steer we through depths of land our dangerous


'Led by the steps of this portentous horse.

* His steps reluctant press the dusty plain,
'But rapid bear him t» his kindred main;

* Thither attend his slight.' Thus spoke the seer: His pleasing counsels graiify'd their ear.

This wondrous tale the tuneful nine recite, And as the mules dictate I must write. 1630 This have I heard, and this as truth proclaim, That you, O princtly peers, of deathless lame, By the joint clTurts of united hands, [finds, Twelve days and nighrs through Lybia's burning High on yi.ur shiuldcrs rsis'd the vessel's weight, All that its wemb contain'd, a mighty freight. What woes o'erlook them, and what toils befell, Ho verse can celebrate, no tongue can tell. Such brave exploits pruclaim'd their godlike line, For, as their lineage, were their deeds divine. 16.10 But when Tritonis' lake the chiefs attain, They eas'd their shoulders, and embark'd again. Poom'd to acutcr griefs they now are curs'd With all the miseries of burning thirst; Like dogs they run its fury to assuage. And at a fountain's head suppress its rage. Nor wander'd they in vain; but soon cxplor'd The sacred spot with golden apples stor'd, In Atlas' realm: the ierpent's wakeful eyes Watch'd till but yesterday the golden prize. 1650 The fair Hespcrides with kind survey Tended the serpent as they tun'd their lay. But, lo I the monster by Alcides slain, Beneath a branching pear-tree prefs'd the plain. His tail still vibrates, though his ghastly head And spire immense lie motionless and dead, Flics in thick swarms his gory sides surround. Drink his black blood, and dry the dripping wound,

Made by the darts, whose poisun'd tips detain
The deadly venom of the Hydra slain. 1661
As Ladon's fate the pensive maids deplore, [tore;
Their hands they wrung, their golden locks they
But, sudden as the heroes haslen'd near,
They to the dust descend and disappear.
Struck with the prodigy his eyes survey'd,
Thus to the nymphs observant Orpheus praj'd:
'Ye goddesses, with blooming beauty bless'ii,
'Look with benevolence on men diftress'd.

* Whether ye grace the splendid courts of Jove,

* Or on this humble earth auspicious move; 1673 'Whether to flowery pastures ye repair,

'And the lov'd name of shepherdesses bear; 'Illustrious nymphs, from ocean sprung, arise, 'Bless with a recent view our longing eyes. 'Bid from the thirsty foil a torrent burst, 'Or open some hard rock to slake our thirst. 'Should we again our tatter'd sails expand, 'And greet at last the dear Achaian land, 'Grateful we then these favours will repay, 'And choicest offerings on your altars lay: 'No goddess who frequents the court of Jot;, 'Shall greater honour (hare, or greater lote.' Thus Orpheus pray'd, with feeble voice zr.i sow:

The listening nymphs commiserate their woe

First tender grass they bade the foil disclose;

Then hiph anove it verdant branches rose,

Erect and strong, the spreading boughs display*!

Wide o'er the barren foil an ample shade.

A poplar's trunk fair Hespera receives,

And ill a weeping willow Ægle grieves. 1650

But Erythci-. in an elm remains:

Each in her tree her proper shape retains;

Stupendous fight! first Ægle silence broke,

And kindly thus the suppliant band bespoke:

'Hilhcr some lawless plunderer came of lite, 'Who will reverse the colour of your fate.

* Yon beast he slew for whom we sorrow no*,

* And ti re the golden apples from their bougk. 'But yesterday the desperate giant came;

'From his black eye-brows slash 'A the livid flame "A lion's shaggy skin, hesmear'd with gore, I;?

■ Wide o'er his shoulders spread the monster won 'On his stout staff his fearless step rcly'd,

■ And by-his deadly dart the serpent died. 'He like a sturdy traveller stalk'd along,

'Seeking some fount to cool his fiery tongue.

* With eager haste he-trod the dusty plain,

* And still for water look'd, but look'd in vain 'To this tall rock, hard by Titonis' lake,

« Some god conducted him his thirst to slake. 171

* Struck by his heel its deep foundation shook,

* And from the yawning clefts a torrent btoVc.

* Prone on the ground the limpid streams he fwd 'And, groveling like a beast, his belly fills.'

Klated with the tale, they speed their course. To find as Ægle told, the fountain's source.

As when assembled ants with joint essay Strive in some chink their lifted grain to lay: Or as when flies some liquid sweet explore, 1 hey haiig in clusters round the honied store; Like them the Mynians: such their number* see And such their haste to gather round the ftreac

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