Слике страница

And oh! the worst of all its arts,
It rends asunder loving hearts.


'Twas in a mocking dream of night-
I fancied I had wings as light
As a young bird's, and few as fleet;
While Love, around whose beauteous feet,
I knew not why, hung chains of lead,
Pursued me, as I trembling fled;
And, strange to say, as swift as thought,
Spite of my pinions, I was caught !
What does the wanton Fancy mean
By such a strange, illusive scene?
I fear she whispers to my breast,
That you, sweet maid, have stol'n its rest;
That though my fancy, for a while,
Hath hung on many a woman's smile,
I soon dissolved each passing vow,
And ne'er was caught by love till now!

Aru'd with hyacinthine rod,
(Arms enough for such a god,)
Cupid bade me wing my pace,
And try with him the rapid race.
O'er many a torrent, wild and deep,
By tangled brake and pendent steep,
With weary foot I panting flew,
Till my brow dropp'd with chilly dew.'
And now my soul, exhausted, dying,
To my lip was faintly flying ;"
And now I thought the spark had fled,
When Cupid hover'd o'er my head,
And fanning light his breezy pinion,
Rescued my soul from death's dominion;"
Then said, in accents half-reproving,
“Why hast thou been a foe to loving ?"


STREw me a fragrant bed of leaves,
Where lotus with the myrtle weaves ;

1 Barnes imagines from this allegory, that our poet married 3 Till my brou dropp'd with chilly dew.) I have followed very late in life. But I see nothing in the ode which alludes those who read reipev iopws for acidev údpos; the former is to matrimony, except it be the lead upon the feet of Cupid ; partly authorized by the MS. which reads teipev idows. and I agree in the opinion of Madame Dacier, in her life of

4 And now my soul, erhausted, dying, the poet, that he was always too fond of pleasure to marry. To my lip was fuintly flying ; &c.] In the original, he ? The design of this little fiction is to intimate, that much

says, his heart flew to his nose ; but our manner more natugreater pain attends insensibility than can ever result from the rally transfers it to the lips. Such is the effect that Plato tenderest impressions of love. Longepierre has quoted an

tells us he felt from a kiss, in a distich quoted by Aulus ancient epigram which bears some similitude to this ode :

Gellius Lecto compositus, vix prima silentia noctis

Την ψυχην, Αγαθωνα φιλων, επι χειλεσιν εσχον. Carpebam, et somno lumina victa dabam;

Ηλθε γαρ ή τλημων ως διαβησομενη.
Cuin me sævus Amor prensum, sursumque capillis
Excitat, et lacerum pervigilare jubet.

Whene'er thy nectar'd kiss I sip,
Tu famulus meus, inquit, ames cum mille puellas,

And drink thy breath, in trance divine, Solus lo, solas, dure jacere potes?

My soul then flutters to my lip, Exilio et pedibus nndis, tunicaque soluta,

Ready to fly and mix with thine. Omne iter impedio, nullum iter expedio.

Aulus Gellius subjoins a paraphrase of this epigram, in None propero, nune ire piget; rursumque redire which we find a number of those mignardises of expression, Penitet; et pudor est stare via media.

which mark the effemination of the Latin language. Ecce tacent voces hominum, strepitusque ferarum, 5 And fanning light his breezy pinion, Et volucrum eantus, turbaque fida canum.

Rescued my soul from death's dominion ;] “The facility Solas ego ex cunctis paveo somnumque torumque, with which Cupid recovers him, signifies that the sweets of Et sequor imperium, sæve Cupido, tuum.

love make us easily forget any solicitudes which he may Upon my couch I lay, at night profound,

occasion."-La Fosse. My languid eyes in magic slumber bound,

. We here have the poet, in his true attributes, reclining When Cupid came and snatch'd me from my bed, upon myrtles, with Cupid for his cupbearer. Some interAnd forced me many a weary way to tread.

preters have ruined the picture by making Eows the name of "What! (said the god) shall you whose vows are known, his slave. None but Love should fill the goblet of Anacreon. Who love so many nymphs, thus sleep alone ?"

Sappho, in one of her fraginents, has assigned this office to I rise and follow; all the night I stray,

Venus. Ελθε, Κυπρι, χρυσειαισιν εν κυλικεσσιν άβροις συμμεUnsheiter'd, trembling, doubtful of my way;

μιγμενον θαλιαισι νεκταρ οινοχρυσα τουτοισι τοις έταιροις Tracing with naked foot the painful track,

έμοις γε και σοις. . Loath to proceed, yet fearful to go back.

Which may be thus paraphrased Yes, at that hour, when Nature seems interr'd,

Hither, Venus, queen of kisses, Nor warbling birds, nor lowing flocks are heard,

This shall be the night of blisses; I, I alone, a fugitive froin rest,

This the night, to friendship dear, Passion my guide, and madness in my breast,

Thou shalt be our Hebe here. Wander the world around, unknr ving where,

Fill the golden brimmer high, The slave of love, the victim of despair!

Let it sparkle like thine eye;

And while in luxury's dream I sink,
Let me the balm of Bacchus drink!
In this sweet hour of revelry
Young Love shall my attendant be-
Dress'd for the task, with tunic round
His snowy neck and shoulders bound,
Himself shall hover by my side,
And minister the racy tide!

“Ah, gentle sire !" the infant said,
“In pity take me to thy shed;
Nor fear deceit: a lonely child
I wander o'er the gloomy wild.
Chill drops the rain, and not a ray
Illumes the drear and misty way!"

I heard the baby's tale of wo;
I heard the bitter night-winds blow;
And sighing for his piteous fate,
I trimm'd my lamp and oped the gate.
'Twas Love! the little wand'ring sprite,'
His pinion sparkled through the night.
I knew him by his bow and dart;
I knew him by my fluttering heart.
Fondly I take him in, and raise
The dying embers' cheering blaze;
Press from his dank and clinging hair
The crystals of the freezing air,
And in my hand and bosom hold
His little fingers thrilling cold.

Oh, swift as wheels that kindling roll,
Our life is hurrying to the goal:
A scanty dust, to feed the wind,
Is all the trace 'twill leave behind.
Then wherefore waste the rose's bloom
Upon the cold, insensate tomb?
Can flowery breeze, or odor's breath,
Affect the still, cold sense of death?

I ask no balm to steep
With fragrant tears my bed of sleep:

while every pulse is glowing,
Now let me breathe the balsam flowing ;
Now let the rose, with blush of fire,
Upon my brow in sweets expire ;
And bring the nymph whose eye hath power
To brighten even death's cold hour.
Yes, Cupid ! ere my shade retire,
To join the blest elysian choir,
With wine, and love, and social cheer,
I'll make my own elysium here !

Oh no;

But now,

And now the embers' genial ray
Had wari'd his anxious fears away;
“I pray thee,” said the wanton child,
(My bosom trembled as he smiled,)
"I pray thee let me try my bow,
For through the rain I've wander'd so,
That much I fear the midnight shower
Has injured its elastic power.”
The fatal bow the urchin drew;
Swift from the string the arrow flew;
As swiftly flew as glancing flame,
And to my inmost spirit came!
“ Fare thee well," I heard him say,
As laughing wild he wing'd away;
“Fare thee well, for now I know
The rain has not relax'd

It still can send a thrilling dart,
As thou shalt own with all thy heart."


ODE XXXIII.1 'Twas noon of night, when round the pole The sullen Bear is seen to roll; And mortals, wearied with the day, Are slumbering all their cares away: An infant, at that dreary hour, Came weeping to my silent bower, And waked me with a piteous prayer, To shield him from the midnight air. “ And who art thou,” I waking cry, “ That bidd'st my blissful visions fly ?"

Bid the rosy current gush,
Let it mantle like thy blush.

ode suggests one of the scenes.-Euvres de Bernard, Anac

scene 4th.
Goddess, hast thou e'er above

The German annotator refers us here to an imitation by
Seen a feast so rich in love ?
Not a soul that is not mine!

Uz, lib. iii., "Amor und sein Bruder;" and a poem of

Kleist, “die Heilung."
Not a soul that is not thine !

La Fontaine has translated, or

rather imitated this ode. “ Compare with this ode (says the German commentator)

?" And who art thou," I waking cry, the beautiful poem in Ramler's Lyr. Blumenlese, lib. iv.

" That biddost my blissful visions fly?"] Anacreon appears p. 296, Amor als Diener.'"

to have been a voluptuary even in dreaming, by the lively

regret which he expresses at being disturbed from his vis1 M. Bernard, the author of L'Art d'aimer, has written a ionary enjoyments. See the odes x. and xxxvii. ballet called “Les Surprises de l'Amour," in which the

s 'Twas Love! the little wand'ring sprite, &e.) See the subject of the third entrée is Anacreon, and the story of this

beautiful description of Cupid, by Moschus, in his first idyl.

'Twas he who gave that voice to thee, ODE XXXIV.1

'Tis he who tunes thy minstrelsy. On thou, of all creation blest, Sweet insect, that delight'st to rest

Unworn by age's dim decline, Upon the wild wood's leafy tops,

The fadeless blooms of youth are thine. To drink the dew that morning drops,

Melodious insect, child of earth, And chirp thy song with such a glee,"

In wisdom mirthful, wise in mirth; That happiest kings may envy thee.

Exempt from every weak decay, Whatever decks tho velvet field,

That withers vulgar frames away ; Whate'er the circling seasons yield,

With not a drop of blood to stain Whatever buds, whatever blows,

The current of thy purer vein ; For thee it buds, for thee it grows

So blest an age is pass'd by thee,
Nor yet art thou the peasant's fear,

Thou seem'st—a little deity!
To him thy friendly notes are dear;
For thou art mild as matin dew;
And still, when summer's flowery huo
Begins to paint the bloomy plain,

We hear thy sweet prophetic strain;
Thy sweet prophetic strain we hear,

CUPID once upon a bed
And bless the notes and then revere !

Of roses laid his weary head; The Muses love thy shrilly tone;'

Luckless urchin, not to seo Apollo calls thee all his own;

Within the leaves a slumbering ise; 1 In a Latin ode addressed to the grasshopper, Rapin has

Αρκει τεττιγας μεθυσαι δροσος, αλλα τιoντες preserved some of the thoughts of our author :

Αειδειν κυκνων εισι γεγονοτεροι. .
O quæ virenti graminis in toro,

In dew, that drops from morning's wings,
Cicada, blande sidis, et herbidos

The gay Cicada sipping floats;
Saltus oberras, otiosos

And, drunk with dew, his matin sings
Ingeniosa ciere cantus.

Sweeter than any cygnet's notes.
Seu forte adultis floribus incubas,

6 Theocritus has imitated this beautiful ode in his nineCæli caducis ebria fletibus, &c.

teenth idyl; but is very inferior, I think, to his original, in Oh thon, that on the grassy bed

delicacy of point and naïveté of expression. Spenser, in one Which Nature's vernal hand has spread,

of his smaller compositions, has sported more diffusely on Reclinest soft, and tun'st thy song,

the same subject. The poem to which I allude, begins The dewy herbs and leaves among !

Whether thou li'st on springing flowers,

Upon a day, as Love lay sweetly slumbering
Drunk with the balmy morning-showers,

All in his mother's lap;
Or, &c.

A gentle bee, with his loud trumpet murmuring,

About him flew by hap, &c. &c. Se: hat Licetus says about grasshoppers, cap. 93, and

In Almeloveen's collection of epigrams, there one by 185.

Luxorius, correspondent somewhat with the turn of Anac* And chirp thy song with such a glee, &c.) “Some authors

reon, where Love complains to his mother of being wounded have affirmed, (says Madame Dacier,) that it is only male by a rose. grass doppers which sing, and that the females are silent;

The ode before us is the very flower of simplicity. The and on this circumstance is founded a bon-mot of Xenarchus, infantine complainings of the little god, and the natural and the comic poet, who says Eir'cloW OL TETTLYES our evdalyoves, impressive reflections which they draw from Venus, are ών ταις γυναιξιν ουδ' ότι ουν φωνης ενι; “ are not the grass

beauties of inimitable grace. I may be pardoned, perhaps, hoppers happy in having dumb wives ?'” This note is ori

for introducing here another of Menage's Anacreontics, not ginally Henry Stephen's; but I chose rather to make a lady for its similitude to the subject of this ode, but for some faint my authority for it.

traces of the same natural simplicity, which it appears to me 3 The Muses love thy shrilly tone ; &c.) Phile, de Animal. to have preserved :Proprietat. calls this insect Movoais pidos, the darling of the

Ερως ποτ' εν χορείαις Muses; and Movowy opriv, the bird of the Muses; and we

Των παρθενων αυτον, , find Plato compared for his eloquence to the grasshopper, in

Την μοι φιλης Κορινναν,

, the following ponning lines of Timon, preserved by Diogenes

"Ως ειδεν, ώς προς αυτην Laertius -

Προσεόραμε τραχηλω Τον παντων δ' ηγειτο πλατυστατος, αλλ' αγορητης

Διδυμας τε χειρας απτων Hόυεπης τεττιξιν ισογραφος, οι 9? Εκαδημου

Φιλει με, μητερ, ειπε. Δενδρει εφεζομενοι οπα λειριοεσσαν εισι.

Καλουμενη Κοριννα,

, This last line is borrowed from Homer's Iliad, y, where

Μητηρ, ερυθριαζει, there occurs the very same simile.

Ως παρθενος μεν ουσα. * Melodious insect, child of earth,) Longepierre has quoted

Κ' αυτος δε δυσχεραίνων, , the two first lines of an epigram of Antipater, from the first

"Ως ομμασι πλανηθεις, book of the Anthologia, where he prefers the grasshopper to

Ερως ερυθριαζει. . the swan:

Εγω, δε οι παραστας,


The bee awaked—with anger wild
The bee awaked, and stung the child.
Loud and piteous are his cries ;
To Venus quick he runs, he flies;
“Oh, mother !—I am wounded through-
I die with pain-in sooth I do!
Stung by some little angry thing,
Some serpent on a tiny wing-
A bee it was—for once, I know,
I heard a rustic call it so."
Thus he spoke, and she the while
Heard him with a soothing smile ;
Then said, " My infant, if so much
Thou feel the little wild-bee's touch,
How must the heart, ah, Cupid ! be,
The hapless heart that's stung by thee!"

That when Death came, with shadowy pinion,
To waft me to his bleak dominion,
I might, by bribes, my doom delay,
And bid him call some distant day.
But, since not all earth's golden store
Can buy for us one bright hour more,
Why should wo vainly mourn our fate,
Or sigh at life's uncertain date?
Nor wealth nor grandeur 'can illume
The silent midnight of the tomb.
No-give to others hoarded treasures-
Mino be the brilliant round of pleasures;
The goblet rich, the board of friends,
Whose social souls the goblet blends ;'
And mine, while yet I've life to live,
Those joys that love alone can give.


If hoarded gold possess’d the power
To lengthen life's too fleeting hour,
And purchase from the hand of death
A little span, a moment's breath,
How I would love the precious ore !
And every hour should swell my store ;

ODE XXXVII. 'Twas night, and many a circling bowl Had deeply warm'd my thirsty soul; As lull'd in slumber I was laid, Bright visions o'er my fancy play'd. With maidens, blooming as the dawn, I seem'd to skim the opening lawn;

tors, who are so fond of disputing "de lanà caprinâ," have been very busy on the anthority of the phrase ivi ar Saveur επελθη. The reading of ίν' αν θανατος επελθη, which De Medenbach proposes in his Amænitates Literariæ, was already hinted by Le Fevre, who seldoin suggests any thing worth notice.

Μη δυσχεραίνε, φημι.
Κυπριν τε και Κορινναν
Διαγνωσαι ουκ εχουσι
Και οι βλεποντες οξυ.

As dancing o'er the enamell'd plain,
The flow'ret of the virgin train,
My soul's Corinna lightly play'd,
Young Cupid saw the gracetul maid;
He saw, and in a moment flew,
And round her neck his arms he threw;
Saying, with smiles of infant joy,
“Oh! kiss me, mother, kiss thy boy!"
Unconscious of a mother's name,
The modest virgin blush'd with shame!
And angry Cupid, scarce believing
That vision could be so deceiving-
Thus to mistake his Cyprian dame!
It made ev'n Cupid blush with shame.
“Be not ashamed, my boy,” I cried,
For I was lingering by his side;
“Corinna and thy lovely mother,
Believe me, are so like each other
That clearest eyes are oft betray'd,

And take thy Venus for the maid." Zitto, in his Cappriciosi Pensieri, has given a translation of this ode of Anacreon.

i Fontenelle has translated this ode, in his dialogue between Anacreon and Aristotle in the shades, where, on weighing the merits of both these personages, he bestows the prize of wisdom upon the poet.

"The German imitators of this ode are, Lessing, in his poem, Gestern Brüder,' &c. Gleim, in the ode * An den Tod;' and Schmidt in der Poet. Blumenl., Gotting. 1783, p. 7."Degen.

? That rohen Death came, with shadowy pinion, To waft me to his bleak dominion, &c.] The commenta

9 The goblet rich, the board of friends,

Whose social souls the goblet blends ;] This communion of friendship, which sweetened the bowl of Anacreon, has not been forgotten by the author of the following scholium, where the blessings of life are enumerated with proverbial simplicity. “Υγιαίνειν μεν αριστον ανδρι θνητω. Δευτερον δε, «αλον φυην γενεσθαι. Το τριτον δε, πλουτειν αδολως. Και το τεταρτον συνεβαν μετα των φιλων. . of mortal blessings here the first is health,

And next those charms by which the eye we move ; The third is wealth. unwounding guiltless wealth,

And then, sweet intercourse with those we love! + " Compare with this ode the beautiful poem der Traum' of Uz."---Degen.

Le Fevre, in a note upon this ode, enters into an elabora te and learned justification of drunkenness; and this is probably the cause of the severe reprehension which he appears to have suffered for his Anacreon. “Fuit olim fateor, (says he in a note upon Longinus,) cnm Sapphonem amabam. Sed ex quo illa me perditissima fæmina pene miserum perdidit cum sceleratissimo suo congerrone, (Anacreontem dico, si nescis, Lector.) noli sperare, &c. &c." He adduces on this ode the authority of Plato, who allowed ebriety, at the Dionysian festivals, to men arrived at their fortieth year. He likewise quotes the following line from Alexis, which he says no one, who is not totally ignorant of the world, can hesitate to confess the truth of:

Ουδεις φιλοποτης εστιν ανθρωπος κακος. .
"No lover of drinking was ever a vicious man."

Light, on tiptoe bathed in dew, We few, and sported as we flew !

Oh 'tis from him the transport flows, Which sweet intoxication knows; With hirn, the brow forgets its gloom, And brilliant graces learn to bloom.

Some ruddy striplings who look'd onWith cheeks, that like the wine-god's shone, Saw me chasing, free and wild, These blooming maids, and slyly smiled; Smiled indeed with wanton glee, Though none could doubt they envied me. And still I flew—and now had caught The panting nymphs, and fondly thought To gather from each rosy lip A kiss that Jove himself might sip— When sudden all my dream of joys, Blushing nymphs and laughing boys, All were gone!_“ Alas!" I said, Sighing for th' illusion fled, “ Again, sweet sleep, that scene restore, Oh! let me dream it o'er and o'er !"

Behold !--my boys a goblet bear, Whose spain.mg foam lights up the air. Where are now the tear, the sigh? To the winds they fly, they fly! Grasp the bowl; in nectar sinking! Man of sorrow, drown thy thinking! Say, can the tears we lend to thought In life's account avail us aught? Can we discern with all our lore, The path we've yet to journey o'er ? Alas, alas, in ways so dark, 'Tis only wine can strike a spark ! Then let me quaff the foamy tide, And through the dance meandering glido; Let me imbibe the spicy breath Of odors chafed to fragrant death; Or from the lips of love inhale A more ambrosial, richer gale! To hearts that court the phantom Care, Let him retire and shroud him there; While we exhaust the nectar'd bowl, And swell the choral song of soul To him, the god who loves so well The nectar'd bowl, the choral swell!

ODE XXXVIII. Let us drain the nectar'd bowl, Let us raise the song of soul To him, the god who loves so well The nectar'd bowl, the choral swell; The god who taught the sons of earth To thrid the tangled dance of mirth ; Him, who was nursed with infant Love, And cradled in the Paphian grove; Him, that the snowy Queen of Charms So oft has fondled in her arms."

1 Wken sudden all my dream of joys,

Blusking nymphs and laughing boys,

All were gone!) “Nonnus says of Bacchus, almost in the same words that Anacreon uses

Εγρομενος δε
Παρθενoν ουκ εκιχησε, και ηθελεν αυθις ιαυειν.
Waking, he lost the phantom's charms,
The nymph had faded from his arms;
Again to slumber he essay'd,

Again to clasp the shadowy maid. LONGEPIERRE. ? " Again, sweet sleep, that scene restore,

Oni let me dream it o'er and o'er !''] Doctor Johnson, in his preface to Shakspeare, animadverting upon the commentators of that poet, who pretended, in every little coincidence of thought, to detect an imitation of some ancient poet, alludes in the following words to the line of Anacreon before us :-" I have been told that when Caliban, after a pleasing dream, says, 'I cried to sleep again,' the author imitates Anacreon, who had, like any other man, the sane wish on the same occasion."

3 Compare with this beautiful ode to Bacchus the verses of Hagedorn, lib. v. 'das Gesellschaftliche;' and of Bürger, p. 51, &c. &c."-Degen. * Him, that the snory Queen of Charms

so oft has foudled in her arms.] Robertellus, upon the epithalamium of Catullus, inentions an ingenious derivation

of Cytheraa, the name of Venus, rapa TO KEVÓCIV TOUS Epuras, which seems to hint that " Love's fairy favors are lost, when not concealed." 6 Alas, alas, in ways so dark,

'Tis only wine can strike a spark !] The brevity of life allows arguments for the voluptuary as well as the moralist. Among many parallel passages which Longepierre has adduced, I shall content myself with this epigram from the Anthologia :

Λουσαμενοι, Προδικη, πυκασώμεθα, και τον ακρατον

Ελκωμεν, κυλικας μειζονας αραμενοι.
Ραιος ο χαιροντων εστι βιος. ειτα τα λοιπα

Γηρας κωλυσει, και το τελος θανατος.
Of which the following is a paraphrase :-

Let's fly, my love, from noonday's beam,
To plunge us in yon cooling stream;
Then, hastening to the festal bower,
We'll pass in mirth the evening hour;
'Tis thus our age of bliss shall fly,
As sweet, though passing as that sigh,
Which seems to whisper o'er your lip,
"Come, while you may, of rapture sip."
For age will steal the graceful form,
Will chill the pulse while throbbing warm;
And death-alas! that hearts, which thrill
Like yours and mine, should e'er be still!

« ПретходнаНастави »