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Through midnight shades to these victorious tents, A wretched woman, innocent of fraud.

The chief, descending, through th' unfolded gates
Upheld a flaming torch. The light disclos'd
One first in servile garments. Near his side
A woman graceful and majestic stood,
Not with an aspect, rivalling the pow'r
Of fatal Helen, or th' ensnaring charms
Of love's soft queen, but such as far surpass'd
Whate'er the lily, blending with the rose,
Spreads on the cheek of beauty soon to fade;
Such as express'd a mind by wisdom ruld,
By sweetness temper’d; virtue's purest light
Illumining the countenance divine:
Yet could not soften rig'rous fate, nor charm
Malignant fortune to revere the good;
Which oft with anguish rends a spotless heart,
And oft associates wisdomi with despair.
In courteous phrase began the chief humane.

Exalted fair, whose form adorns the night,
Forbear to blame the vigilance of war.
My slow compliance to the rigid laws
Of Mars impute. In me no longer pause
Shall from the presence of our king withhold
This thy apparent dignity and worth.

Here ending, he conducts her. At the call
Of his lov'd brother, from his couch arose
Leonidas.. In wonder he survey'd
Th' illustrious virgin, whom his presence aw'd.
Her eye submissive to the ground declin'd

In veneration of the godlike man.
His mien, his voice, her anxious dread dispel,
Benevolent and hospitable thuş.

Thy looks, fair stranger, amiable and great,
A mind delineate, which from all commands
Supreme regard. Relate, thou noble dame,
By what relentless destiny compell’d,
Thy tender feet the paths of darkness tread;
Rehearse th' afflictions whence thy virtue mourns.

On her wan cheek. a sudden blush arose Like day, first dawning on the twilight pale; When, wrapt in grief, these words a passage found.

If to be most unhappy, and to know That hope is irrecoverably fled; If to be great and wretched may deserve Commiseration from the brave; behold, Thou glorious leader of unconquer'd bands, Behold, descended from Darius' loins, Th’ afflicted Ariana ; and my pray'r Accept with pity, nor my tears disdain.. First, that I lov'd the best of human race, Heroic, wise, adorn’d by ev'ry art,. Of shame unconscious doth my heart réveal. This day; in Grecian arms conspicuous clad, He fought, he fell. A passion, long conceal'd, For me, alas! within my brother's arins His dying breath resigning, he disclos'd. Oh! I will stay my sorrows! will forbid My eyes to stream before thee, and my breast, O’erwhelm'd by anguish, will from sighs restrain!'

For why should thy humanity be griev'd
At my distress ? why learn from me to mourn
The lot of mortals, doom'd to pain and woe.
Hear then, O king, and grant my sole request,
To seek his body in the heaps of slain.

Thus to the hero su'd the royal maid,
Resembling Ceres in majestic woe,
When supplicating Jove, from Stygian gloom,
And Pluto’s black embraces, to redeem
Her lov'd and lost Proserpina. A while
On Ariana fixing stedfast eyes,
These tender thoughts Leonidas recalld.

Such are thy sorrows, O for ever dear,
Who now at Lacedæmon dost deplore
My everlasting absence. Then aside
He turn'd and sigh'd. Recov'ring, he address'd
His brother. Most beneficent of men,
Attend, assist this princess. Night retires
Before the purple-winged morn. A band
Is call’d. The well-remember'd spot they find,
Where Teribazus from his dying hand
Dropt in their sight his formidable sword.
Soon from beneath a pile of Asian dead
They draw the hero, by his armour known.

Then, Ariana, what transcending pangs
Were thine! what horrors ! In thy tender breast
Love still was mightiest. On the bosom cold
Of Teribạzus, grief-distracted maid,
Thy beauteous limbs were thrown. Thy snowy hue
The clotted gore disfigur'd. On his wounds

Loose flow'd thy hair ; and, bubbling from thy eyes, Impetuous sorrow lav'd th' empurpled clay.

Then, with no trembling hand, no change of look, She drew a poniard, which her garment veil'd; And instant sheathing in her heart the blade, On her slain lover silent sunk in death. The unexpected stroke prevents the care Of Agis, pierc'd by horror and distress, Like one, who, standing on a stormy beach, Beholds a found'ring vessel, by the deep At once engulf'd; his pity feels and mourns, Depriv'd of pow'r to save: so Agis view'd The prostrate pair. He dropp'd a tear, and thus. · Oh! much lamented! Heavy on your heads Hath evil fall'n, which o'er your pale remains Commands this sorrow from a stranger's eye. Illustrious ruins! May the grave impart That peace which life denied ! and now receive This pious office from a hand unknown.

He spake, unclasping from his shoulders broad His ample robe. He strew'd the waving folds O'er each wan visage; turning then, address'd The slave, in mute dejection standing near.

Thou, who, attendant on this hapless fair, Hast view'd this dreadful spectacle, return. These bleeding relics bear to Persia's king, Thou with four captives, whom I free from bonds.

Song of the Priestess of the Muses to the chosen Band after their

Return from the Inroad into the Persian Camp, on the Night before the Battle of Thermopylæ.

FROM BOOK XII. ' Back to the pass in gentle march he leads Th’embattled warriors. They, behind the shrubs, Where Medon sent such numbers to the shades, In ambush lie. The tempest is o'erblown. Soft breezes only from the Malian wave O’er each grim face, besmear'd with smoke and gore, Their cool refreshment breathe. The healing gale, A crystal rill near Eta's verdant feet, Dispel the languor from their harass'd nerves, Fresh brac'd by strength returning. O'er their heads Lo! in full blaze of majesty appears Melissa, bearing in her hand divine Th' eternal guardian of illustrious deeds, The sweet Phæbean lyre. Her graceful train Of white-robid virgins, seated on a range Half down the cliff, o'ershadowing the Greeks, All with concordant strings, and accents clear, A torrent pour of melody, and swell A high, triumphal, solemn dirge of praise, Anticipating fame. Of endless joys . In bless'd Elysium was the song. Go, meet Lycurgus, Solon, and Zaleucus sage, Let them salute the children of their laws. Meet Homer, Orpheus and th' Ascræan bard, Who with a spirit, by ambrosial food

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