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TRANSLATIONS FROM THEOCRITUS
Ah, why am I from empty joys deberrid?
For kisses are but empty when compard.
I rave, and in my raging ôt sball tear
Of parsly, with a wreath of ivy bound,
And border'd with a rosy edging round.
What pangs I feel, unpity'd and unheard ! To Amaryllis Love compels my way, Since I must die, why is my fate deferr'd!
My browzing goats upon the mountains stray: I strip my body of my shepherd's frock: O Tityrus, tend them well, and see them fed Behold that dreadful downfall of a rock, In pastures fresh, and to their watering led; Where yon old fisher views the waves from high? And 'ware the ridgling with his budding head. 'Tis that convenient leap I mean to try. Ah, beauteous nymph! can you forget your love, You would be pleas'd to see me plunge to shore, The conscious grottos, and the shady grove; But better pleas'd if I should rise no more. Where stretch'd at ease your tender limbs were laid, I might have read my fortune long ago, Your nameless beauties nakedly display'd ? When, seeking my success in love to know, Then I was call'd your darling, your desire, I try'd th' infallible prophetic way, With kisses such as set my soul on fire:
A poppy-leaf upon my palm to lay : But you are chang'd, yet I am still the same; I struck, and yet no lucky crack did follor; My heart maintains for both a double flame; Yet I struck hard, and yet the leaf lay hollow : Griev'd, but unmov'd, and patient of your scorn: And which was worse, if any worse could prove, So faithful I, and you so much forsworn!
The withering leaf foreshow'd your withering love. I die, and death will finish all my pain;
Yet farther (ah, how far a lover dares!)
My last recourse I had to sieve and sheers;
But harvest done, to chare-work did aspire ;
That I was doom'd to love, and you to hate. Or give me leave at least to look on you.
A milk-white goat for you I did provide ; Some god transformi me by his heavenly power Two milk-white kids ran frisking by my side, Ev'n to a bee to buzz within your bower,
Por which the nut-brown lass, Erithasis, The winding ivy-chaplet to invade,
Full often offer'd many a savoury kiss. And folded fern that your fair forehead shade. Hers they shall be, since you refuse the price: Now to my cost the force of Love I find;
What madman would o'erstand his market twice! The heavy hand it bears on human-kind.
My right eye itches, some good-luck is near, The milk of tigers was his infant food,
Perhaps my Amaryllis may appear; Taught from his tender years the taste of blood; I'll set up such a note as she shall hear. His brother whelps and he ran wild about the What nymph but my melodious voice would move? wood.
She must be flint, if she refuse my love. Ah, nymph, train'd up in his tyrannic court, Hippomenes, who ran with noble strife To make the sufferings of your slaves your sport! To win his lady, or to lose his life, Unheeded ruin! treacheous delight!
(What shift some men will make to get a wife !) O polish'd hardness soften'd to the sight!
Threw down a golden apple in her way; Whose radjant eyes your ebon brows adorn, For all her haste she could not choose but stay: Like midnight those, and these like break of morn! Renown said, “Run;" the glittering bribe cry'd, Smile once again, revive me with your charms;
“ Hold;" And let me die contented in your arms.
The man might have been hang'd, but for his gold. I would not ask to live another day,
Yet some suppose 'twas Love (some few indeed) Might I but sweetly kiss my soul away.
That stopt the fatal fury of her speed :
She saw, she sigh'd; her nimble feet refuse Betwixt two sheets thou shalt enjoy her bare, Their wonted speed, and she took pains to lose. With whom no Grecian virgin can compare; * A prophet some, and some a poet cry,
So soft, so sweet, so balmy, and so fair, (No matter which, so neither of them lie)
A boy, like thee, would make a kingly line:
But oh, a girl like her must be divine.
Twelvescore viragoes of the Spartan race,
And hide the beauties that we made our boast,
Tall, slender, straight, with all the graces blest. You shall not hear, but know 'tis like the rest. As pines the mountains, or as fields the corn, My aking head can scarce support the pain; Or as Thessalian steeds the race adorn; This cursed love will surely turn my brain : So rosy-colour'd Helen is the pride Feel bow it shoots, and yet you take no pity ;
Of Lacedæmon, and of Greece beside. Nay then 'tis time to end my doleful ditty.
Like her no nymph can willing osiers bend A clammy sweat does o'er my temples creep; In basket-works, which painted streaks commend: My heary eyes are urgʻd with iron sleep: With Pallas in the loom she may contend. I lay me down to gasp my latest breath,
But none, ah! none can animate the lyre, The wolves will get a breakfast by my death; And the mute strings with vocal souls inspire; Yet scarce enough their hunger to supply,
Whether the learn’d Minerva be her theme,
Or chaste Diana bathing in the stream:
O fair, O graceful! yet with maids enrolld,
hold! HELEN AND MENEL AUS. Yet ere to-morrow's Sun shall show his head,
The dewy paths of meadows we will tread, FROM THE EIGHTEENTH IDYLLIUM OF 'THEOCRITUS.
For crowns and chaplets to adorn thy bead. TWELVE Spartan virgins, noble, young, and fair, Where all shall weep and wish for thy return, With violet wreaths adornd their flowing hair; As bleating lambs their absent mother mourn. And to the pompous palace did resort,
Our noblest maids shall to thy name bequeath Where Menelaus kept his royal court.
The boughs of lotos, form'd into a wreath. There hand in hand a comely choir they led; This monuinent, thy maiden beauty's due, To sing a blessing to his nuptial bed, (bespread. High on a plane-tree shall be hung to view: With curious needles wrought, and painted flowers On the smooth rind the passenger shall see Jove's beauteous daughter now his bride must be, Thy name engrav'd, and worship Helen's tree: And Jove himself was less a god than he:
Balm, from a silver-box distillid around, For this their artful hands instruct the lute to Shall all bedew the roots, and scent the sacred sound,
[ground. ground. Their feet assist their hands, and justly beat the The balm, 'tis true, can aged plants prolong, This was their song: “ Why, happy bridegroom, But Helen's name will keep it ever young. Ere yet the stars are kindled in the sky, [why, Hail bride, hail bridegroom, son-in-law to Jove! Ere twilight shades, or evening dews are shed, With fruitful joys Latona bless your love; Why dost thou steal so soon away to bed? Let Venus furnish you with full desires, Has Somnus brush'd thy eye-lids with his rod, Add vigour to your wills, and fuel to your fires : Or do thy legs refuse to bear their load,
Almighty Jove augment your wealthy store, With flowing bowls of a more generous god ? Give much to you, and to his grandsons more. Ji gentle slumber on thy temples creep,
From generous loins a generous race will spring, (But, naughty man, thou dost not mean to sleep) Each girl, like her, a queen; each boy, like you, Betake thee to thy bed, thou drowsy drone,
a king. Sleep by thyself, and leave thy bride alone: Now sleep, if sleep you can; but while you rest, Go, leave her with her maiden mates to play, Sleep close, with folded arms, and breast to At sports more harmless till the break of day:
breast: Give us this evening; thou hast morn and night, Rise in the morn; but oh! before you rise, And all the year before thee, for delight.
Forget not to perform your morning sacrifice. O happy youth! to thee, among the crowd, We will be with you ere the crowing cock Of rival princes, Cupid sneez'd aloud;
Salutes the light, and struts before his feather'd And every lucky omen sent before,
flock. To meet thee landing on the Spartan shore. Hymen, oh Hymen, to thy triumphs run, Of all our heroes thou canst boast alone,
And view the mighty spoils thou hast in battle That Jove, wbene'er he thunders, calls thee son :
THE DESPAIRING LOVER. The rose is fragrant, but it fades in time;
The violet sweet, but quickly past the prime; FROM THE TWENTY-THIRD IDYLLIUM OF
White lilies hang their heads, and soon decay, THEOCRITUS.
And whiter snow in minutes melts away: ITH inauspicious love, a wretched swain Such is your blooming youth, and withering so: Pursued the fairest nymph of all the plain;
The time will come, it will, when you shall know Fairest indeed, but prouder far than fair,
The rage of love; your haughty heart shall burn She plung'd him hopeless in a deep despair:
In flames like mine, and meet a like return. Her heavenly form too haughtily she priz'd,
Obdurate as you are, oh! hear at least His person hated, and his gifts despis'd;
My dying prayers, and grant my last request. Nor knew the force of Cupid's cruel darts,
When first you ope your doors, and, passing by, Nor feard his awful power on human hearts;
The sad ill-omen'd object meets your eye, But either from her hopeless lover fled,
Think it not lost, a moment if you stay; Or with disdainful glances shot him dead.
The breathless wretch, so made by you, survey: No kiss, no look, to cheer the drooping boy; Some cruel pleasure will from thence arise, No word she spoke, she scorn'd ev'n to deny.
To view the mighty ravage of your eyes.
I wish (but ob! my wish is vain, I fear)
Then loose the knot, and take me from the place,
Which love and me from public scorn may hide. And every sullen frown, and bitter scorn,
Thrice call upon my name, thrice beat your But fann'd the fuel that too fast did burn,
breast, Long time, unequal to his mighty pain,
And hail me thrice to everlasting rest : He strove to curb it, but he strove in vain : Last let my tomb this sad inscription bear: At last his woes broke out, and begg'd relief
“A wretch whom love bas kill'd lies buried here; With tears, the dumb petitioners of grief: O passengers, Aminta's eyes beware." With tears so tender as adorn'd his love,
Thus having said, and furious with his love, And any heart, but only bers, would move.
He heav'd with more than human force to more Trembling before her bolted door's he stood, A weighty stone (the labour of a team) And there pour'd out th’unprofitable food;
And rais'd from thence he reach'd the neighbouring Staring his eyes, and haggard was his louk;
beam: Then, kissing tirst the threshold, thus he spoke :
Around its bulk a sliding knot he throws, “Ah nymph, more cruel than of human race! And fitted to his neck the fatal noose: Thy tigress heart belies thy angel face:
Then spurning backward took a swing, till Death Too well thou show'dst thy pedigree from stone:
Crept up, and stopt the passage of his breath. Thy granddame's was the first by Pyrrha thrown: The bounce burst ope the door; the scornful fair Unworthy thou to be so long desir'd;
Relentless look'd, and saw him beat his quivering But so my love, and so my fate requir’d.
feet in air; I beg not now (for 'tis in vain) to live;
Nor wept his fate, nor cast a pitying eye, But take this gift, the last that I can give.
Nor took him down, but brush'd regardless by: This friendly cord sball soon decide the rife And, as she past, her chance or fate was such, Betwixt my lingering love and loathsome life: Her garments touch'd the dead, polluted by the This moment puts an end to all my pain;
touch : I shall no more despair, nor thou disdain. Next to the dance, thence to the bath did move; Farewell, ungrateful and unkind! I go
The bath was sacred to the god of love; Condemn'd by thee to those sad shades below. Whose injur'd image, with a wrathful eye, I go th' extremest remedy to prove,
Stood threatening from a pedestal on high: To drink oblivion, and to drench my love: Nodding a while, and watchful of his blow, There happily to lose my long desires :
He fell; and falling crush'd th' ungrateful nymph But ah! what draught so deep to quench my fires ? below: Farewell, ye never-opening gates, ye stones, Her gushing blood the pavement all besmeard; And threshold guilty of my midnight moans. And this her last expiring voice was heard; What I have suffer'd here, ye know too well;
“ Lovers farewell, revenge has reach'd my scorn; What I shall do, the gods and I can tell.
Thus warn’d, be wise, and love for love return."
DELIGHT of human-kinds, and gods above,
Sucks in with open lips thy balmy breath, Parent of Rome, propitious queen of love, By turns restor'd to life, and plung'd in pleasing Whose vital power, air, earth, and sea supplies;
death. And breeds whate'er is born beneath the rolling There while thy curling limbs about him move, skies:
Involv'd and fetter'd in the links of love, For every kind, by thy prolific might,
When, wishing all, he nothing can deny, Springs, and beholds the regions of the light. Thy charms in that auspicious moment try; Thee, goddess, thee the clouds and tempests fear:
With winning eloquence our peace implore, And at thy pleasing presence disappear :
And quiet to the weary world restore.
[is blest. And Heaven itself with more serene and purer light For when the rising spring adorns the mead,
THE BEGINNING OF THE SECOND BOOK OP And a new scene of Nature stands display'd,
'T18 pleasant, safely to behold from shore, Whose native songs thy genial fire confess,
The rolling ship, and hear the tempest roar:
Not that another's pain is our delight;
The moving legions mingled in the war:
But much more sweet thy labouring steps to guide O'er barren mountains, o'er the flowery plain,
'To virtue's heights, with wisdom well supply'd, The leafy forest, and the liquid main,
And all the magazines of learning fortify'd : Extends thy uncontrol'd and boundless reign.
From thence to look below on human-kind, Through all the living regions dost thou move,
Bewilder'd in the maze of life, and blind: And scatter'st, where thou go'st, the kindly seeds To see vain fools ambitiously contend of love.
For wit and power; their last endeavours bend Since then the race of every living thing
T'outshine each other, waste their time and health Obeys thy power; since nothing new can spring In search of honour, and pursuit of wealth. Without thy warmth, without thy influence bear, O wretched man! in what a mist of life, Or beautiful, or lovesome can appear;
Enclos'd with dangers and with noisy strife, Be thou my aid, my tuneful song inspire, He spends his little span; and overfeeds And kindle with thy own productive fire;
His cramm'd desires, with more than Nature needs! While all thy province, Nature, I survey,
For Nature wisely stints our appetite, And sing to Memmius an immortal lay
And craves no more than undisturb'd delight: Of Heaven and Earth, and every where thy won Which minds, unmix'd with cares and fears obdrous power display:
A soul serene, a budly void of pain. (tain;
That, wanting all, and setting pain aside,
If well-tuo'd harps, nor the more pleasing sound These bugbears of the mind, this inward hell,
But Nature and right Reason inust display
FROM THE FIFTH BOOK OT
Tum porrò puer, &c. 'Tis plain, these useless toys of every kind As little can relieve the labouring mind :
Tuus, like a sailor, by a tempest hurld Unless we could suppose the dreadful sight Ashore, the babe is shipwreck'd on the world: Of marshal'd legions moving to the fight
Naked he lies, and ready to expire; Could, with their sound and terrible array, Helpless of all that human wants require; Expel our fears, and drive the thoughts of death Expos’d upon unhospitable earth, But, since the supposition vain appears, [away. From the first moment of his hapless birth. Since clinging cares, and trains of inbred fears, Straight with foreboding cries he fills the rooms Are not with sounds to be affrighted thence, Too true presages of his future doom. But in the midst of pomp pursue the prince, But flocks and herds, and every savage beast, Not aw'd by arms, but in the presence bold, By more indulgent Nature are increas'd. Without respect to purple, or to gold;
They want no rattles for their froward mood, Why should not we these pageantries despise, Nor nurse to reconcile them to their food, Whose worth but in our want of reason lies? With broken words; nor winter blasts they fear, For life is all in wandering errours led;
Nor change their habits with the changing year: And just as children are surpris'd with dread, Nor, for their safety, citadels prepare, And tremble in the dark, so riper years
Nor forge the wicked instruments of war: Ev'n in broad day-light are possess'd with fears; Unlabourd Earth her bounteous treasure grants, And shake at shadows fanciful and vain,
And Nature's lavish hand supplies their common As those which in the breasts of children reign.
TRANSLATIONS FROM HORACE.
THE THIRD ODE
As thou, to whom the Muse commends,
The best of poets and of friends,
Dost thy committed pled e restore;
And land him safely on the shore ;
And save the better part of me,
From perishing with him at sea. Inscribed to the earl of Roscommon, on his in- | Sure he, who first the passage try'd, tended voyage to Ireland.
In harden'd oak his heart aid hide,
And rib. of iron arın'd his side; So may th’auspicious queen of love,
Or his at least, in hollow wood And the twin stars, the seed of Jove,
Who tempted first the briny flood: And he who rules the raging wind,
Nor fear'd the winds contending roar, To thee, O sacred Ship, be kind ;
Nor billows beatin. on the shore; And gentle breezes fill thy sails,
Nor Hyades p rtending rain Supplying soft Etesian gales :
Nor all the tyrants of the main