Слике страница
PDF
ePub

And to celestial Beauty gave
The captive infant for her slave.
His mother comes, with many a toy,
To ransom her beloved boy ;'
His mother sues, but all in vain,-
Ilo ne'er will leave his chains again.
Even should they take his chains away,
The little captive still would stay.
“ If this,” he cries, “ a bondage be,
Oh, who could wish for liberty ?”

The vapors, which at evening weep,
Are beverage to the swelling deep;
And when the rosy sun appears,
He drinks the ocean's misty tears.
The moon too quaffs her paly stream
Of lustre, from the solar beam.
Then, hence with all your sober thinking!
Since Nature's holy law is drinking :
I'll make the laws of nature mine,
And pledge the universe in wine.

ODE XXI.2

OBSERVE when mother earth is dry,
She drinks the droppings of the sky,
And then the dewy cordial gives
To ev'ry thirsty plant that lives.

ODE XXII.
The Phrygian rock, that braves the storm,
Was once a weeping matron's form;'
And Progue, hapless, .rantic maià,
Is now a swallow in the shade.

Ma ci vinto a due occhi l'arme cede :

because black earth absorbs moisture more quickly than any Et t'affatichi indarno, Citerea;

other; and accordingly he indulges us with an experimental Che s' altri 'l scioglie, egli a legar si riede.

disquisition on the subject. See Gail's notes. Love, wandering through the golden maze

One of the Capilupi has imitated this ode, in an epitaph on Of my beloved's hair,

a drunkard :Found, at each step, such sweet delays,

Dum vixi sine fine bibi, sic imbrifer arcus
That rapt he linger'd there.

Sic tellus pluvias sole perusta bibit.
And how, indeel, was Love to fly,

Sic bibit assiduè fontes et flumina Pontus,
Or how his freedom find,

Sic semper sitiens Sol maris haurit aquas.
When every ringlet was a tie,

Ne te igitur jactes plus me, Silene, bibisse ;
A chain, by Beauty twined.

Et mihi da victas tu quoque, Bacche, manus.
In vain to seek her boy's release

HIPPOLYTUS CAPILUPUS. Comes Venus from above :

While life was mine, the little hour
Fond mother, let thy efforts cease,

In drinking still unvaried flew ;
Love's now the slave of Love.

I drank as earth imbibes the shower,
And, should we loose his golden chain,

Or as the rainbow drinks the dew; The prisoner would return again!

As ocean quaffs the rivers up,

Or flushing sun inhales the sea : ? His mother comes, with many a loy,

Silenus trembled at my cop, To ransom her beloved boy ; &c.] In the first idyl of Mos

And Bacchus was outdone by me! chus, Venus thus proclaims the reward for her fugitive child :

I cannot omit citing those remarkable lines of Shakspeare, 'O pavuras yepas étel,

where the thoughts of the ode before us are preserved with Μισθος του, το φιλαρα το Κυπριδος" ην δ' αγαγης νιν such striking similitude : Ου γυμνον το φιλαμα, τυ δ', ω ξενε, και πλεον έξεις.

I'll example you with thievery. On him, who the haunts of my Cupid can show,

The sun's a thief, and with his great attraction A kiss of the tenderest stamp I'll bestow ;

Robs the vast sea. The moon's an arrant thief, But he, who can bring back the urchin in chains,

And her pale fire she snatches from the sun. Shall receive even something more sweet for his pains.

The sea's a thief, whose liquid surge resolves Subjoined to this ode, we find in the Vatican MS. the fol

The mounds into salt tears. The earth's a thief, lowing lines, which appear to me to boast as little sense as

That feeds, and breeds by a composture stolen metre, and which are most probably the interpolation of the

From general excrements. transcriber :

Timon of Athens, act iv. sc. 3. “Ηδυμελης Ανακρεων

9 — a toceping matron's form ;) Niobe.-Ogilvie, in his ' Ηδυμελης δε Σαπφω

Essay on the Lyric Poetry of the Ancients, in remarking upon Πινδαρικον το δε

the Odes of Anacreon, says, “ In some of his pieces there is Συγκερασας τις εγχεοι

exuberance and even wildness of imagination ; in that parΤα τρια ταυτα δυκει

ticularly, which is addressed to a young girl, where he wishes Και Διονυσος εισελθων

alternately to be transformed to a mirror, a coat, a stream, a Και Παφιη παραχρους

bracelet, and a pair of shoes, for the different purposes which Και αυτος Ερως καν επιειν.

he recites : this is mere sport and wantonness." ? Those critics who have endeavored to throw the chains It is the wantonness, however, of a very graceful Muse; of precision over the spirit of this beautiful trifle, require too "ludit amabiliter." The compliment of this ode is exquisitely much from Anacreontic philosophy. Among others, Gail delicate, and so singular for the period in which Anacreon very sapiently thinks that the poet uses the epithet pehaivn, lived, when the scale of love had not yet been graduated into

μοι μελος

[ocr errors]

Nay, sandals for those airy feet-
E'en to be trod by them were sweet!

ODE XXIII.

Oh! that a mirror's form were mine,
Thåt I might catch that smile divino;
And like my own fond fancy bo,
Reflecting thee, and only thee;
Or could I be the robe which holds
That graceful form within its folds ;
Or, turn'd into a fountain, lave
Thy beauties in my circling wave.
Would I were perfume for thy hair,
To breathe my soul in fragrance there ;
Or, better still, the zone, that lies
Close to thy breast, and feels its sighs!!
Or e'en those envious pearls that show
So faintly round that neck of snow-

I would be a happy gem,
Like them to hang, to fade like them
What more would thy Anacreon be?
Oh, any thing that touches thee;

I OFTEN wish this languid lyre,
This warbler of my soul's desiro,
Could raise the breath of song sublime,
To men of fame, in former time.
But when the soaring themo I try,
Along the chords my numbers die,
And whisper, with dissolving tone,
“Our sighs are given to love alone!"
Indignant at the feci lo 'ay,
I tore the panting chords away,
Attuned them to a nobler swell,
And struck again the breathing shell ;

Yes,

all its little progressive refinements, that if we were inclined which the women wore for the purpose of restraining the to question the authenticity of the poem, we should find a exuberance of the bosom. Vide Polluc. Onomast. Thus much more plausible argument in the features of modern gal- Martial :lantry which it bears, than in any of those fastidious conjec Fascia crescentes dominæ compesce papillas. tures upon which some commentators have presumed so far.

The women of Greece not only wore this zone, but conDegen thinks it spurious, and De Pauw pronounces it to be

demned themselves to fasting, and made use of certain drugs miserable. Longepierre and Barnes refer us to several imita

and powders for the same purpose. To these expedients they tions of this ode, from which I shall only select the following

were compelled, in consequence of their inelegant fashion of epigram of Dionysius :

compressing the waist into a very narrow compass, which Ειθ' ανεμος γενομην, συ δε γε στειχουσα παρ' αυγας, necessarily caused an excessive tumidity in the bosom. See Στηθεα γυμνωσαις, και με πνεoντα λαβοις.

Dioscorides, lib. v.
Ειθε ροδον γενομης υποπορφυρον, όφρα με χερσιν 9 Nay, sandals for those airy feet-
Αριμενη, κομισαις στεθεσι χιονεοις.

E'en to be trod by them were sweet!) The sophist PhilosΕιθε κρινον γενομης λευκοχρυον, οφρα με χερσιν tratus, in one of his love-letters, has borrowed this thought; Αραμενη, μαλλον της χροτιης κορεσης.

ω αδετοι ποδες, ω καλλος ελευθερος, ω τρισευδαιμων εγω και I wish I could like zephyr steal

urkapios civ TraTNOCTE pe.--"Oh lovely feet! oh excellent To wanton o'er thy mazy vest;

beauty! oh! thrice happy and blessed should I be, is you And thou wouldst ope thy bosom-veil,

would but tread on me!" In Shakspeare, Romeo desires to And take me panting to thy breast !

be a glove :-
I wish I might a rose-bud grow,

Oh! that I were a glove upon that hand,
And thou wouldst cull me from the bower,

That I might kiss that cheek!
To place me on that breast of snow,

And, in his Passionate Pilgrim, we meet with an idea some-
Where I should bloom, a wintry flower.

what like that of the thirteenth line >
I wish I were the lily's leaf,

He, spying her, bounced in, where as he stood,
To fade upon that bosom warm,

“O Jove !" quoth she, “why was not I a flood ?" Content to wither, pale and brief,

In Burton's Anatomy of Melancholy, that whimsical farThe trophy of thy fairer form!

rago of "all such reading as was never read," we find a I may add, that Plato has expressed as fanciful a wish in translation of this ode made before 1632.-"Englished by a distich preserved by Laertius:

Mr. B. Holiday, in his Technog. act i. scene 7."
Αστερας εισαθρεις, Αστήρ εμος: ειθε

γένοι μην

& According to the order in which the odes are usually Ουρανος, ώς πολλοις ομμασιν εις σε βλεπω. placed, this (Oc1w Eyelv Arpeidas) forms the first of the se

ries; and is thought to be peculiarly designed as an introWhy dost thou gaze upon the sky ?

duction to the rest. It however characterizes the genius of Oh! that I were that spangled sphere,

the Teian but very inadequately, as wine, the burden of his And every star should be an eye,

lays, is not even mentioned in it: To wonder on thy beauties here!

cum multo Venerem confundere mero Apuleius quotes this epigram of the divine philosopher, to Precepit Lyricí Teia Musa senis.

OVID. justify himself for his verses on Critias and Charinus. See The twenty-sixth Ode, Ev Mev liyeista OnBns, might, with his Apology, where he also adduces the example of Annc- just as much propriety, be placed at the head of his songs. reon :-** Fecere tamen et alii talia, et si vos ignoratis, apud We find the sentiment of the ode before us expressed by Gruecos Teius quidam, &c. &c."

Bion with much simplicity in his fourth idyl. The above i Or, better still, the zone, that lies

translation is, perhaps, too paraphrastical; but the ode has Close to thy breast, and feels ils sighs /] This Tarvin was been so frequently translated, that I could not otherwise a riband, or band, called by the Romans fascia and strophium, avoid triteness and repetition.

TO STELLA.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

i in all the glow of epic fire,

translate this ode, I had interpreted opovnua, with Barter and To Hercules I wake the lyre.] Madame Dacier generally Barnes, as implying courage and military virtue; but I do translates dupn into a lute, which I believe is inaccurate. not think that the gallantry of the idea suffers by the import “D'expliquer la lyre des anciens (says M. Sorel) par un luth, which I have now given to it. For, why need we consider c'est ignorer la différence qu'il y a entre ces deux instrumens this possession of wisdom as exclusive ? and in truth, as the de musique."-Bibliothèque Françoise.

design of Anacreon is to estimate the treasure of beauty, ? But still its fainting sighs repeat,

above all the rest which Nature has distributed, it is perhaps " The tale of love alone is sweet!"] The word avre.duva in

even refining upon the delicacy of the compliment, to prefer the original, may imply that kind of musical dialogue prac

the radiance of female charms to the cold illumination of tised by the ancients, in which the lyre was made to respond

wisdom and prudence; and to think that women's eyes are to the questions proposed by the singer. This was a method

the books, the academies, which Sappho used, as we are told by Hermogenes; “Orav From whence doth spring the true Promethean fire. την λυραν ερωτα Σαπφω, και όταν αυτη αποκρινηται."-Περι 6 She gave thee beauty-mightier far Ιδεων, τομ. δευτ.

Then all the pomp and power of war.) Thus Achilles Ta9 Henry Stephen has imitated the idea of this ode in the

tius :-καλλος οξυτερον τιτρωσκει βελους, και δια των οφθαλfollowing lines of one of his poems :

μων εις την ψυχην καταρρει. Οφθαλμος γαρ οδος ερωτικό Provida dat cunctis Natura animantibus arma,

τραυματι. . “Beauty wounds more swiftly than the arrow, Et sua fcemineum possidet arma genus,

and passes through the eye to the very soul; for the eye is

the inlet to the wounds of love." Unguldgue ut defendit equum, atque ut cornua taurum, Armata est formâ fæmina pulchra sua.

Be thou but fair, mankind adore thee, And the same thought occurs in those lines, spoken by mark here is ingenious :-" The Romans," says he were

Smile, and a world is weak before thee !] Longepierre's reCorisca in Pastor Fido:

so convinced of the power of beauty, that they used a word Cosi noi la bellezza Ch' è vertu nostra cosi propria, come

implying strength in the place of the epithet beautiful. Thth

Plautus, act 2, scene 2. Bacchid.
La forza del leone,

Sed Bacchis etiam fortis tibi visa.
E l'ingegno de l'huomo.

“Fortis, id est formosa,' say Servius and Nonius."
The lion boasts his savage powers,

* We have here another ode addressed to the swallow. And lordly man his strength of mind;

Alberti has imitated both in one poem, beginning
But beauty's charm is solely ours,

Perch'io pianga al tuo canto,
Peculiar boon, by Heav'n assign'd.

Rondinella inportuna, &c. " An elegant explication of the beauties of this ode (says 8 Alas! unlike the swarm of Lores, Degen) may be found in Grimm an den Anmerk. über einige

That brood within this hapless breast, Oden des Anakr."

And never, never change their nest!) Thus Love is repre4 To man she gave, in that proud hour,

sented as a bird, in an epigrum cited by Longepierre from The boon of intellectual power.] In my first attempt to the Anthologia :

[ocr errors]

Nor naval arms, nor mailed steed,
Have made this vanquish'd bosom bleed;
No—'twas from eyes of liquid blue,
A host of quiver'd Cupids flew;'
And now my heart all bleeding lies
Beneath that army of the eyes !

Still every year, and all the year,
They fix their fated dwelling here;
And some their infant plumage try,
And on a tender winglet fly;
While in the shell, impregn'd with fires,
Still lurk a thousand more desires ;
Some from their tiny prisons peeping,
And some in formless embryo sleeping.
Thus peopled, like the vernal groves,
My breast resounds with warbling Loves ;
One urchin imps the other's feather,
Then twin-desires they wing together,
And fast as they thus take their flight,
Still other urchins spring to light.
But is there then no kindly art,
To chase these Cupids from my heart ?
Ah, no! I fear, in sadness fear,
They will forever nestle here !

ODE XXVII.3

We read the flying courser's name
Upon his side, in marks of flame;
And, by their turban'd brows alone,
The warriors of the East are known.
But in the lover's glowing eyes,
The inlet to his bosom lies ;"
Through them we see the small faint mark,
Where Love bas dropp'd his burning spark !

ODE XXVI.1 THY harp may sing of Troy's alarms, Or tell the tale of Theban arms; With other wars my song shall burn, For other wounds my harp shall mourn. 'Twas not the crested warrior's dart, That drank the current of my heart;

ODE XXVIII.S As, by his Lemnian forge's flame, The husband of the Paphian damo Moulded the glowing steel, to form Arrows for Cupid, thrilling warm; And Venus, as he plied his art, Shed honey round each new-made dart,

Αιει μοι ουνει μεν εν ουασιν ηχος ερωτος, ,

Oμμα δε σιγα ποθοις το γλυκυ δακρυ φερει.
Ουδ' η νυξ, ου φεγγος εκοιμισεν, αλλ' υπο φιλτρων
Ηδη που κραδιη γνωστος ενεστι τυπος.

.
Ω πτανοι, μη και ποτ' εφιπτασθαι μεν ερωτες

Οιδατ', αποπτηναι δ' ουθ' όσον ισχυετε.
"Tis Love that murmurs in my breast,

And makes me shed the secret tear;
Nor day nor night my soul hath rest,

For night and day his voice I hear.
A wound within my heart I find,

And oh ! 'tis plain where Love has been;
For still he leaves a wound behind,

Such as within my heart is seen.
Oh, bird of Love! with song so drear,

Make not my soul the nest of pain ;
But, let the wing which brought thee here,

In pity waft thee hence again! 1 " The German poet Uz has imitated this ode. Coinpare also Weisse Scherz. Lieder, lib. iii., der Soldat." Gail, Degen.

2 No-'twas from eyes of liquid blue

A host of quiver'd Cupids fler ;] Longepierre has quoted part of an epigram froin the seventh book of the Anthologia, which has a fancy something like this.

Ου με λεληθας, ,
Τοξοτα, Ζηνοφιλας ομμασι κρυπτομενος
Archer Love! though slyly creeping,

Well I know where thou dost lie;
I saw thee through the curtain peeping,

That fringes Zenophelia's eye.
The poets abound with conceits on the archery of the eyes,

but few have turned the thought so naturally as Anacreon. Ronsard gives to the eyes of his mistress "un petit camp d'amours."

3 This ode forms a part of the preceding in the Vatican MS., but I have conformed to the editions in translating them separately.

“Compare with this (says Degen) the poem of Ramler Wahrzeichen der Liebe, in Lyr. Blumenlese, lib. iv. p. 313."

4 But in the lover's glowing eyes,

The inlet to his bosom lies ;) “We cannot see into the heart," says Madame Dacier. But the lover answers

Il cor ne gli occhi et ne la fronte ho scritto. M. La Posse has given the following lines, as enlarging on the thought of Anacreon :

Lorsque je vois un amant,
Il cache en vain son tourment,
A le trahir tout conspire,
Sa langueur, son embarras,
Tout ce qu'il peut faire ou dire,

Même ce qu'il ne dit pas.
In vain the lover tries to veil

The flame that in his bosom lies;
His cheeks' confusion tells the tale,

We read it in his languid eyes :
And while his words the heart betray,

His silence speaks e'en more than they. 5 This ode is referred to by La Mothe le Vayer, who ! believe, was the author of that curious little work, called “Hexameron Rustique.” He makes use of this, as well as the thirty-fifth, in his ingenious but indelicate explanation of Homer's Cave of the Nymphs.- Journée Quatrieme.

While Love, at hand, to finish all,
Tipp'd every arrow's point with gall ;'
It chanced the Lord of Battles came
To visit that deep cave of flame.
"Twas from the ranks of war he rush'd
His spear with many a life-drop blush'd;
He saw the fiery darts, and smiled
Contemptuous at the archer-child.
“ What !" said the urchin, “ dost thou smile?
Here, hold this little dart awhile,
And thou wilt find, though swift of flight,
My bolts are not so feathery light.”

Mars took the shaft-and, oh, thy look, Sweet Venus, when the shaft he took !-Sighing, he felt the urchin's art, And cried, in agony of heart, “ It is not light-1 sink with pain ! Take-take thy arrow back again.” “ No," said the child, “ it must not be ; That little dart was made for thee !"

1 While Love, at hand, to finish all,
Tipp'd every arrow's point with gall;) Thus Claudian. -

Labuntur gemini fontes, hic dulcis, amarus
Alter, et infusis corrumpit mella venenis,
Unde Cupidineas armavit fama sagittas.
In Cyprus' isle two rippling fountains fall,
And one with honey flows, and one with gall;
In these, if we may take the tale from fame,

The son of Venus dips his darts of flame. See Alciatus, emblem 91, on the close connection which subsists between sweets and bitters. " Apes ideo pangunt, (says Petronius.) quia ubi dulce, ibi et acidum invenies."

The allegorical description of Cupid's employment, in Horace, may vie with this before us in fancy, though not in delicacy :

-ferus et Cupido
Semper ardentes acuens sagittas

Cote cruenta.
And Cupid, sharpening all his fiery darts,

Upon a whetstone stain'd with blood of hearts. Secundus has borrowed this, but has somewhat softened the image by the omission of the epithet“cruentâ."

Fallor an ardentes acuebat cote sagittas? Eleg. 1. 9 Yes-loving is a painful thrill

And not to love more painful still ; &c.) The following Anacreontic, addressed by Menage to Daniel Huet, enforces, with much grace, the “necessity of loving :"

Περι του δειν φιλησαι. .
Προς Πετρον Δανιηλα Υεττον.

Μεγα θαυμα των αοιδων, ,
Χαριτων θαλος, Υιττε,
Φιλεωμεν, ω εταιρε
Φιλεησαν οι σοφισται. .
Φιλεησε σεμνος ανηρ,
Το τεκνον του Σωφρονισκου, ,
Σοφιης πατηρ απασης. .
Τι δ' ανευ γένοιτ' Ερωτος :
Ακονη μεν εστι ψυχης.*
Πτερυγεσσιν εις Ολυμπιον

Κατακείμενους αναιρει. . . This line is borrowed from an epigram by Alpheus of Mitylene which Menage, I think, says some where be was himself the first to produce to the world :

Ψυχης εστιν Ερως ακονη. .

ODE XXIX.
Yes-loving is a painful thrill,
And not to love more painful still ;-
But oh, it is the worst of pain,
To love and not be loved again!
Affection now has fled from earth,
Nor fire of genius, noble birth,
Nor heavenly virtue, can beguile
From beauty's cheek one favoring smile
Gold is the woman's only theme,
Gold is the woman's only dream.
Oh! never be that wretch forgiven-
Forgive him not, indignant heaven!
Whose grovelling eyes could first adore,
Whose heart could pant for sordid ore.
Since that devoted thirst began,
Man has forgot to feel for man;
The pulse of social life is dead,
And all its fonder feelings fled!
War too has sullied Nature's charms,
For gold provokes the world to arms :

Βραβεας τετηγμενοισι
Βελεεσι εξαγειρει. .
Πυρι λαμπαδος φαεινω
Ρυπαρωτερους καθαιρει, ,
Φιλεωμεν ουν, Υεττε,
Φιλιωμεν ω εταιρε.
Αδικως δε λοιδορουντι
'Αγιους ερωτας ήμων
Κακον ευζομαι το μουνον, ,
'Iva pin

duvait' CKELVOS
Φιλεειν τε και φιλεισθαι. .
Thou! of tuneful bards the first,
Thou! by all the Graces nursed;
Friend ! each other friend above,
Come with me, and learn to love.
Loving is a simple lore,
Graver men have learn'd before ;
Nay, the boast of former ages,
Wisest of the wisest sages,
Sophroniscus' prudent son,
Was by love's illusion won.
Oh! how heavy life would move,
If we knew not how to love !
Love's a whetstone to the mind;
Thus 'tis pointed, thus refined.
When the soul dejected lies,
Love can waft it to the skies ;
When in languor sleeps the heart,
Love can wake it with his dart;
When the mind is dull and dark,
Love can light it with his spark !
Come, oh ! come then, let us haste
All the bliss of love to taste;
Let us love both night and day,
Let us love our lives away!
And when hearts, from loving free,
(If indeed such hearts there be,)
Frown upon our gentle flame,
And the sweet delusion blame;
This shall be my only curse,
(Could I, could I wish them worse ?)
May they ne'er the rapture prove,
of the smile from lips we love!

« ПретходнаНастави »