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PRIAM'S LAMENTATION AND PETITION TO ACHILLES. 275
And theu, most fickle, most uneasy part,
Thou restless wanderer, my Heart,
Be still; gently, ah leave,
Thou busy, idle thing, to heave.
Stir not a pulse; and let my blood,
That turbulent, unruly flood,
Let me be all, but my attention, dead.
Go, rest, unnecessary springs of life,
Leave your officious toil and strife;
For I would hear her voice, and try
If it be possible to die.
Come, all ye love-sick maids and wounded swains, And listen to her healing strains.
A wondrous balm between her lips she wears,
Of sovereign force to soften cares;
And this through every ear she can impart
(By tuneful breath diffus'd) to every heart.
Swiftly the gentle charmer flies,
And to the tender grief soft air applics,
Which, warbling mystic sounds,
Cements the bleeding panter's wounds.
But, ah! beware of clamorous moan;
Let no unpleasing murmur, or harsh groan,
Your slighted loves declare;
Your very tenderest moving sighs forbear,
For even they will be too boisterous here.
Hither let nought but sacred Silence come,
And let all saucy praise be dumb.
And, lo! Silence himself is here;
Methinks I see the midnight god appear.
In all his downy pomp array'd,
Behold the reverend shade:
An ancient sigh he sits upon,
Whose memory of sound is long since gone,
And purposely annihilated for his throne:
Beneath, two soft transparent clouds do meet,
In which he seems to sink his softer feet.
A melancholy thought, condens'd to air,
Stol'n from a lover in despair,
Like a thin mantle, serves to wrap
In fluid folds his visionary shape.
A wreath of darkness round his head he wears,
Where curling mists supply the want of hairs;
While the still vapours, which from poppies rise,
Bedew his hoary face, and lull his eyes.
But hark! the heavenly sphere turns round, And Silence now is drown'd
How on a sudden the still air is charm'd,
As if all harmony were just alarm'd!
And every soul, with transport fill'd,
Alternately is thaw'd and chill'd.
See how the heavenly choir
Come flocking to admire,
And with what speed and care
Descending angels cull the thinnest air!
Haste then, come all th' immortal throng,
And listen to her song;
Leave your lov❜d mansions in the sky,
And hither, quickly hither fly.
Your loss of Heaven nor shall you need to fear;
While she sings, 'tis Heaven here.
See how they crowd, see how the little cherubs skip!
While others sit around her mouth, and sip
Sweet Hallelujahs from her lip,
Those lips, where in surprise of bliss they rove;
For ne'er before did angels taste
So exquisite a feast,
Of music and of love.
Prepare then, ye immortal choir,
Each sacred minstrel tune his lyre,
And with her voice in chorus join;
Her voice, which, next to yours, is most divine.
Bless the glad Earth with heavenly lays,
And to that pitch th' eternal accents raise,
Which only breath inspir'd can reach, [teach:
To notes, which only she can learn, and you can
While we, charm'd with the lov'd excess,
Are wrapt in sweet forgetfulness
Of all, of all, but of the present happiness:
Wishing for ever in that state to lie,
For ever to be dying so, yet never die.
PRÍAM'S LAMENTATION AND PETITION TO ACHILLES,
FOR THE BODY OF HIS SON HECTOR. TRANSLATED FROM THE GREEK OF HOMER, ILIAD @. Beginning at this line:
“Ως ἄρα φωνήσας ἀπίβη πρὸς μακρὶν Ολυμπον
ARGUMENT INTRODUCTORY TO THIS TRANSLATION.
HECTOR'S body (after he was slain) remained still in the possession of Achilles; for which Priam made great lamentation. Jupiter had pity on him; and sent Iris to comfort him, and direct him after what manner he should go to Achilles' tent; and how he should there ransom the body of his son. Priam accordingly orders his chariot to be got ready, and, preparing rich presents for Achilles, sets forward for the Grecian camp, accompanied by nobody but his herald Idæus. Mercury, at Jupiter's command, meets him by the way, in the figure of a young Gre cian, and, after bemoaning his misfortune, undertakes to drive his chariot unobserved through the guards, and to the door of Achilles' tent; which having performed, he discovered himself a god, and, giving him a short instruction how to move Achilles to compassion, flew up to Heaven.
So spake the god, and heavenward took his flight;
When Priam from his chariot did alight;
Leaving Idrus there, alone he went,
With solemn pace, into Achilles' tent.
Heedless he pass'd through various rooms of state,
Until approaching where the hero satę;
There, at a feast, the good old Priam found
Jove's best-belov'd, with all his chiefs around;
Two only were t'attend his person plac'd,
Automedon and Alcymus; the rest
At greater distance, greater state express'd.
Priam, unseen by these, his way pursued,
And first of all was by Achilles view'd.
About his knees his trembling arms he cast,
And, agonizing, grasp'd and held them fast;
Then caught his hands, and kiss'd and press'd them | And there, with tears and sighs, afresh begun
Those hands, th' inhuman authors of his woes;
Those hands, whose unrelenting force had cost
Much of his blood (for many sons he lost).
But, as a wretch who has a murder done,
And, seeking refuge, does from justice run,
Entering some house, in haste, where he's unknown,
Creates amazement in the lookers-on:
So did Achilles gaze, surpris'd to see
The godlike Priam's royal misery;
All on each other gaz'd, all in surprise,
And mute, yet seem'd to question with his eyes,
Till he at length the solemn silence broke;
And thus the venerable suppliant spoke :
"Divine Achilles, at your feet behold
A prostrate king, in wretchedness grown old :
Think on your father, and then look on me,
His hoary age and helpless person see;
So furrow'd are his cheeks, so white his hairs,
Such, and so many, his declining years;
Could you imagine (but that cannot be)
Could you imagine such, his misery!
Yet it may come, when he shall be oppress'd,
And neighbouring princes lay his country waste;
Ev'n at this time, perhaps, some powerful foe,
Who will no mercy, no compassion, show,
Entering his palace, sees him feebly fly,
And seek protection where no help is nigh.
In vain he may your fatal absence mourn,
And wish, in vain, for your delay'd return;
Yet, that he hears you live, is some relief;
Some hopes alleviate his excess of grief;
It glads his soul to think he once may see
His much-lov'd son; would that were granted
But I, most wretched I! of all bereft!
Of all my worthy sons how few are left!
Yet fifty goodly youths I had to boast,
When first the Greeks invaded Ilion's coast:
Nineteen, the joyful issue of one womb,
Are now, alas! a mournful tribute of one tomb.
Merciless War this devastation wrought,
And their strong nerves to dissolution brought.
"Still one was left, in whom was all my hope,
My age's comfort, and his country's prop;
Hector, my darling, and my last defence,
Whose life alone their deaths could recompense;
And, to complete my store of countless woe,
Him you have slain-of him bereav'd me too!
For his sake only hither am I come;
Rich gifts I bring, and wealth, an endless sum;
All to redeem that fatal prize you won,
A worthless ransom for so brave a son.
"Fear the just gods, Achillės; and on me With pity look, think you your father see; Such as I am, he is; alone in this,
I can no equal have in miseries;
Of all mankind most wretched and forlorn,
Bow'd with such weight as never has been borne;
Reduc'd to kneel and pray to you, from whom
The spring and source of all my sorrows come;
With gifts to court mine and my country's bane,
And kiss those hands which have my children slain."
Now sadness o'er Achilles' face appears,
Priam he views, and for his father fears;
That, and compassion, melt him into tears.
Then gently with his hand he put away
Old Priam's face; but he still prostrate lay,
To mourn the fall of his ill-fated son.
But passion different ways Achilles turns,
Now he Patroclus, now his father, mourns:
Thus both with lamentations fill'd the place,
Till sorrow seem'd to wear one common face.
HECUBA, ANDROMACHE, AND HELEN,
OVER THE DEAD BODY OF HECTOR. TRANSLATED FROM THE GREEK OF HOMER, ILIAD L
Beginning at the line:
Ηὼς δὲ κροκόπεπλος ἐκίδνατο πᾶσαν ἐπ ̓ αἶαν.
CONNECTION OF THIS WITH THE FORMER TRANSLATION.
PRIAM, at last, moves Achilles to compassion, and, after having made him presents of great value, obtains the body of his son. Mercury awakens Priam early in the morning, and advises him to haste away with the body, lest Agamemnon should be informed of his being in the camp: he himself helps to harness the mules and horses, and conveys him safely, and without noise, chariot and all, from among the Grecian tents; then flies up to Heaven, leaving Priam and Idæus to travel on with the body toward Troy.
Now did the saffron morn her beams display,
Gilding the face of universal day;
When mourning Priam to the town return'd;
Slowly his chariot mov'd, as that had mourn'd;
The mules beneath the mangled body go,
As bearing (now) unusual weight of woe.
To Pergamus' high top Cassandra flies,
Thence she afar the sad procession spies:
Her father and Idæus first appear,
Then Hector's corpse extended on a bier;
At which her boundless grief loud crics began,
And, thus lamenting, through the street she ran
"Hither, ye wretched Trojans, hither all!
Behold the godlike Hector's funeral!
If e'er you went with joy to see him come,
Adora'd with conquest and with laurels, home,
Assemble now, his ransom'd body see,
What once was all your joy; now all your misery!" She spake, and straight the numerous crowd obey'd,
Nor man, nor woman, in the city stay'd;
Common consent of grief had made them one,
With clamorous moan to Scæa's gate they run,
There the lov'd body of their Hector meet,
Which they, with loud and fresh lamentings, greet
His reverend mother, and his tender wife,
Equal in love, in grief had (qual strife:
In sorrow they no moderation knew,
But, wildly wailing, to the chariot flew ;
There strove the rolling wheels to hold, while each
Attempted first his breathless corpse to reach;
Aloud they beat their breasts, and tore their hair,
Rending around, with shrieks, the suffering an.
ANDROMACHE, HECUBA, AND HELEN'S LAMENTATIONS. 277
Now had the throng of people stopt the way,
Who would have there lamented all the day;
But Priam from his chariot rose, and spake :
“Trojans, enough; truce with your sorrows make;
Give way to me, and yield the chariot room:
First let me bear my Hector's body home,
Then mourn your fill." At this the crowd gave
Yielding like waves of a divided sea.
Idæus to the palace drove, then laid,
With care, the body on a sumptuous bed,
And round about were skilful singers plac'd,
Who wept, and sigh'd, and in sad notes express'd
Their moan; all in a chorus did agree
Of universal mournful harmony,
When first Andromache her passion broke,
And thus (close pressing his pale cheeks) she
"MY lost husband! let me ever mourn
Thy early fate, and too untimely urn:
In the full pride of youth thy glories fade,
And thou in ashes must with them be laid.
Why is my heart thus miserably torn!
Why am I thus distress'd! why thus forlorn!
Am I that wretched thing a widow left?
Why do I live, who am of thee bereft ?
Yet I were blest, were I alone undone;
Alas, my child! where can an infant run?
Unhappy orphan! thou in woes art nurs'd;
Why were you born?—I am with blessings curs'd!
For, long ere thou shalt be to manhood grown,
Wide desolation will lay waste this town:
Who is there now that can protection give,
Since he, who was her strength, no more doth live?
Who of her reverend matrons will have care?
Who save her children from the rage of war?
For he to all father and husband was,
And all are orphans now, and widows, by his loss.
Soon will the Grecians now insulting come,
And bear us captives to their distant home;
I, with my child, must the same fortune share,
And all alike be prisoners of the war;
'Mongst base-born wretches he his lot must have,
And be to some inhuman lord a slave.
Else some avenging Greek, with fury fill'd,
Or for an only son or father kill'd
By Hector's hand, on him will vent his rage,
And with his blood his thirsty grief assuage;
For many fell by his relentless hand. [stain'd.
Biting that ground, with which their blood was
"Fierce was thy father (O my child!) in war,
And never did his foes in battle spare; [cost,
Thence come these sufferings, which so much have
Much woe to all, but sure to me the most.
I saw him not when in the pangs of death,
Nor did my lips receive his latest breath;
Why held he not to me his dying hand?
And why receiv'd not I his last command?
Something he would have said, bad I been there,
Which I should still in sad remembrance bear;
For I could never, never words forget,
Which night and day I should with tears repeat."
She spake, and wept afresh, when all around
A general sigh diffus'd a mournful sound.
Then Hecuba, who long had been opprest
With boiling passions in her aged breast,
Mingling her words with sighs and tears, begun
A lamentation for her darling son.
Than all my other numerous issue were;
"HECTOR, my joy, and to my soul more dear
O my last comfort, and my best-belov'd!
Thou, at whose fall even Jove himself was mov'd, '
And sent a god his dread commands to bear,
So far thou wert high Heaven's peculiar care;
From fierce Achilles' chains thy corpse was freed,
So kind a fate was for none else decreed:
My other sons, made prisoners by his hands,
Were sold like slaves, and shipt to foreign lands.
Thou too wert sentenc'd by his barbarous doom,
And dragg'd, when dead, about Patroclus' tomb,
His lov'd Patroclus, whom thy hands had slain :
And yet that cruelty was us'd in vain,
Since all could not restore his life again.
Now fresh and glowing, ev'n in death thou art,
And fair as he who fell by Phoebus' dart."
Here weeping Hecuba her passion stay'd,
And universal moan again was made;
When Helen's lamentation her's supply'd,
And thus, aloud, that fatal beauty cry'd.
"O HECTOR! thou wert rooted in my heart,
No brother there had half so large a part!
Not less than twenty years are now pass'd o'er,
Since first I landed on the Trojan shore;
Since I with godlike Paris fled from home:
(Would I had dy'd before that day had come !)
In all which time (so gentle was thy mind)
I ne'er could charge thee with a deed unkind;
Not one untender word, or look of scorn,
Which I too often have from others borne.
But you from their reproach still set me free,
And kindly have reprov'd their cruelty;
If by my sisters or the queen revil'd,
(For the good king, like you, was ever mild)
Your kindness still has all my grief beguil❜d.
Ever in tears let me your loss bemoan,
Who had no friend alive but you alone:
All will reproach me now where'er I pass,
And fly with herrour from my hated face."
This said, she wept; and the vast throng was
And with a general sigh her grief approv'd.
When Priam (who had heard the mourning crowd)
Rose from his scat, and thus he spake aloud:
"Cease your lamentings, Trojans, for a while,
And fell down trees to build a funeral pile;
Fear not an ambush by the Grecians laid,
For with Achilles twelve days truce I made.”
He spake; and all obey'd as with one mind,
Chariots were brought, and mules and oxen join'd;
Forth from the city all the people went,
And nine days space was in that labour spent;
The tenth, a most stupendous pile they made,
And on the top the manly Hector laid,
Then gave it fire; while all, with weeping eyes,
Beheld the rolling flames and smoke arise.
All night they wept, and all the night it burn'd;
But when the rosy morn with day return'd,
About the pile the thronging people came,
And with black wine quench'd the remaining flame.
His brothers then and friends search'd every where,
And, gathering up his snowy bones with care,
Wept o'er them; when an urn of gold was brought,
Wrapt in soft purple palls, and richly wrought,
In which the sacred ashes were interr'd,
Then o'er his grave a monument they rear'd.
Meantime strong guards were plac'd, and careful
To watch the Grecians, and prevent surprise.
The work once ended, all the vast resort
Of mourning people went to Priam's court;
There they refresh'd their weary limbs with rest,
Ending the funeral with a solemn feast.
ODE XIX. LIB. I.
Mater seva Cupidinum, &c.
THs tyrant queen of soft desires,
With the resistless aid of sprightly wine
And wanton ease, conspires
To make my heart its peace resign,
And re-admit love's long-rejected fires.
For beauteous Glycera I burn,
The flames so long repell'd with double force return. Matchless her face appears, and shines more bright Than polish'd marble when reflecting light:
Her very coyness warms;
And with a grateful sullenness she charms:
Each look darts forth a thousand rays,
Whose lustre an unwary sight betrays;
My eye-balls swim, and I grow giddy while 1 gaze,
She comes! she comes! she rushes in my veins !
At once all Venus enters, and at large she reigns!
Cyprus no more with her abode is blest,
I am her palace, and her throne my breast.
Of savage Scythian arms no more I write,
Of Parthian archers, who in flying fight,
And make rough war their sport;
Such idle themes no more can move,
Nor any thing but what's of high import:
And what's of high import, but love?
Vervain and gums, and the green turf prepare;
With wine of two years old your cups be fill'd:
After our sacrifice and prayer,
The goddess may incline her heart to yield.
In vain's thy inexhausted store
Of wealth, in vain thy power;
Thy honours, titles, all must fail,
Where piety itself can nought avail.
The rich, the great, the innocent, and just,
Must all be huddled to the grave,
With the most vile and ignominious slave,
And undistinguish'd lie in dust.
In vain the fearful flies alarms,
In vain he is secure from wounds of arms,
In vain avoids the faithless seas,
And is confin'd to home and ease,
Bounding his knowledge, to extend his days.
In vain are all those arts we try,
All our evasions, and regret to die:
From the contagion of mortality,
No clime is pure, no air is free:
And no retreat
Is so obscure, as to be hid from Fate,
Thou must, alas! thou must, my friend;
(The very hour thou now dost spend
In studying to avoid, brings on thy end)
Thou must forego the dearest joys of life;
Leave the warm bosom of thy tender wife,
And all the much-lov'd offspring of her womb,
To moulder in the cold embraces of a tomb.
All must be left, and all be lost;
Thy house, whose stately structure so much cost,
Shall not afford
Room for the stinking carcase of its lord.
Of all thy pleasant gardens, grots, and bowers,
Thy costly fruits, thy far-fetch'd plants and
Nought shalt thou save;
Or but a sprig of rosemary shalt have,
To wither with thee in the grave:
The rest shall live and flourish, to upbraid
Their transitory master dead.
Then shall thy long-expecting heir
A joyful mourning wear:
And riot in the waste of that estate
Which thou hast taken so much pains to get.
All thy hid stores he shall unfold,
And set at large thy captive gold.
That precious wine, condemn'd by thee To vaults and prisons, shall again be free: Bury'd alive though now it lies,
Again its sparkling surface show,
And free as element profusely flow,
With such high food he shall set forth his feasts,
That cardinals shall wish to be his guests;
And pamper'd prelates see
Themselves outdone in luxury.
BLESS me, 'tis cold! how chill the air!
How naked does the world appear!
But see (big with the offspring of the North)
The teeming clouds bring forth:
A shower of soft and fleecy rain
Falls, to new-clothe the earth again.
Behold the mountain-tops around,
As if with fur of ermins crown'd;
And lo! how by degrees
The universal mantle hides the trees
In hoary flakes, which downward fly,
As if it were the autumn of the sky :
I LOOK'D, and I sigh'd, and I wish'd I could speak,
And very fain would have been at her;
But when I strove most my great passion to break,
Still then I said least of the matter.
Trembling, the groves sustain their weight, and I swore to myself, and resolv'd I would try
Like aged limbs, which feebly go Beneath a venerable head of snow.
Diffusive cold does the whole Earth invade,
Like a disease, through all its veins 'tis spread, numb'd and dead. And each late living stream
Let's melt the frozen hours, make warm the
Let cheerful fires Sol's feeble beams repair;
Fill the large bowl with sparkling wine;
Let's drink till our own faces shine,
Till we like suns appear,
To light and warm the hemisphere.
Wine can dispense to all both light and heat,
They are with wine incorporate;
That powerful juice, with which no cold dares
Which still is fluid, and no frost can fix:
Let that but in abundance flow,
And let it storm and thunder, hail and snow,
'Tis Heaven's concern; and let it be
The care of Heaven still for me:
Those winds which rend the oaks and plough the
Great Jove can, if he please, With one commanding nod appease.
Seek not to know to morrow's doom;
That is not ours, which is to come :
The present moment's all our store;
The next should Heaven allow,
Then this will be no more:
So all our life is but one instant now,
Look on each day you've past
To be a mighty treasure won;
And lay each moment out in haste;
We're sure to live too fast,
And cannot live too soon.
Youth doth a thousand pleasures bring,
Which from decrepit age will fly;
The flowers that flourish in the spring,
In winter's cold embraces die.
Now Love, that everlasting boy, invites
To revel, while you may, in soft delights:
Now the kind nymph yields all her charms,
Nor yields in vain to youthful arms.
Slowly she promises at night to meet,
But eagerly prevents the hour with swifter feet.
To gloomy groves and shades obscure she flies,
There veils the bright confession of her eyes.
Unwillingly she stays,
Would more unwillingly depart,
And in soft sighs conveys
The whispers of her heart.
Still she invites and still denies,
And vows she'll leave you if you're rude;
Then from her ravisher she flies,
But flies to be pursu'd;
If from his sight she does herself convey,
With a feign'd laugh she will herself betray,
And cunningly instruct him in the way.
Some way my poor heart to recover;
But that was all vain, for I sooner could die,
Than live with forbearing to love her.
Dear Cælia, be kind then; and since your own eyes
By looks can command adoration,
Give mine leave to talk too, and do not despise
Those oglings that tell you my passion.
We'll look, and we'll love, and though neither
The pleasure we'll still be pursuing;
so, without words, I don't doubt we may make A very good end of this wooing.
FAIR Cælia love pretended,
And nam'd the myrtle bower,
Where Damon long attended
Beyond the promis'd hour.
At length impatient growing
Of anxious expectation,
His heart with rage o'erflowing,
He vented thus his passion.
"To all the sex deceitful,
A long and last adieu;
Since women prove ungrateful
As oft as men prove true.
The pains they cause are many,
And long and hard to bear;
The joys they give (if any)
Few, short, and unsincere."
But Cælia now, repenting
Her breach of assignation,
Arriv'd with eyes consenting,
And sparkling inclination,
Like Cytherea smiling,
She blush'd, and laid his passion;
The shepherd ceas'd reviling,
And sung this recantation.
"How engaging, how endearing,
Is a lover's pain and care!
And what joy the nymph's appearing,
After absence or despair!
Women wise increase desiring,
By contriving kind delays;
And advancing, or retiring,
All they mean is more to please."
ALAS! what pains, what racking thoughts he prove
Who lives remov'd from her he dearest loves!