Слике страница

FHaynen in:et del

ISMüller :




DIf rightly thou art call’d, whose voice divine

5 B 0 0 K VII.

Efcend from Heav'n, Urania, by that name
Following, above th’ Olympian hill I soar,
Above the fight of Pegaséan wing.
The meaning, not the name I call: for thou

Nor 1. Descend from Heav'n, Urania] on the snowy top Descende cælo, Hor. Od. III. IV.1. Of cold Olympus but here it is better apply'd, as now his subje& leads him from Heaven and frowy is an epithet often given to Earth. The word Urania in to this mountain by the ancient Greek fignifies heav'nly; and he poets : but he calls it old, that is invokes the beav'nly Muse as he had fam'd of old and long celebrated, done before, I. 6. and as he had as he says old Euphrates, I. 420. and faid in the beginning that he intended mount Casus old, II. 593. His to foar above th Aonian mount, so heavenly Muse was before the hills, now he says very truly that he had which were from the beginning, as effected what he intended, and soars it follows. above th'. Olympian bill, above the

5. flight of Pegaféan wing, that is his

Nor of the Muses nine, nor on the top fubje&t was more sublime than the Of old Olympus dwell'A, but heav'nly loftieft fights of the Heathen poets.

born,] Taffo in his invocation has Dr. Bentley proposes Parnassus in the same sentiment. Gier. Lib. Cant. stead of Olympus, but the mountain

1. St. 2. Olympus is likewise celebrated for the seat of the Mufes, who were O Musa, tu, che di caduchi allori therefore called Olympiades, as in Non circondi la fronte in Helicona; Homer, Iliad II. 491. Onunla Ma nel cielo infra i beati chori Flates M-sar. And some would Hai di stelle immortali aurea coread cold Olympus, as in I. 516.


8. Before

for thou


A 3

Ner of the Muses nine, nor on the top
Of old Olympus dwell'st, but heav'nly born,
Before the hills appear’d, or fountain flow'd,
Thou with eternal Wisdom didst converse,
Wisdom thy sister, and with her didst play
In presence of th' almighty Father, pleas'd
With thy celestial song, .

Up led by thee
Into the Heav'n of Heav'ns I have presum’d,

An 8 Before the hills appear'd, or foun- printer and poet, Fairy Queen, B. 2.

tain flow'd, &c.] From Prov. Cant. 2. St. 39. VIII. 24, 25, 30. When there were

Thus fairly she attempered her feast, no depths, I was brought forth; when

And pleas'd them all with meet there were no fountains abounding

satiety. with water: Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I I agree with the Doctor that thee is brought forth: Then was I by him as better than thy temp'ring. Thyer. one brought up with him; and I was daily bis delight, rejoicing always be in allufion to the difficulty of respi

15 Thy temp'ring :) This is said fore him, or playing according to the ration on high mountains. This Vulgar Latin (ludens

coram eo omni empyreal air was too pure and fine temporej to which Milton alludes, for him, but the heavenly Muse when he says and with her did play temper'd and qualify'd it fo as to &c. And so he quotes it likewise in make him capable of breathing in his Tetrachordon, p. 222. Vol. I. it: which is a modest and beautiful Edit. 1738.

“ God himself conceals " not his own recreations before make favorable allowances for any

way of bespeaking his reader to " the world was built ; I was, faith failings he may have been guilty of “ the eternal Wisdom, daily his dein treating of lo sublime a subject. light, playing always before him.'


(as once 14

and drawn empyreal air, Bellerophon, &c.] Belleropbon Thy temp'ring ;) Dr.Bentley makes was a beautiful and valiant youth, himself very merry in his insulting fon of Glaucus ; who refusing the manner, with the word temp'ring, amorous applications of Antea wife and calls it the printer's blunder ; of Prætus king of Argos, was by but I think the following application her false suggestions like those of of it in Spenser may justity both Joseph's mistress to her husband,


An earthly guest, and drawn empyreal air,
Thy temp’ring; with like safety guided down

Return me to my native element :
Lest from this flying steed unrein'd, (as once
Bellerophon, though from a lower clime)
Dismounted, on th' Aleian field I fall
Erroneous there to wander and forlorn.

20 Half yet remains unsung, but narrower bound

Within sent into Lycia with letters defiring It is thus translated by Cicero in his his destruction; where he was put third book of Tusculan Disputations. on several enterprises full of hazard, in which however he came off con

Qui miser in campis mærens erra

bat Aleis, queror: but attempting, vain-glo Ipse fuum cor edens, hominum velrioufly to mount up to Heaven on the winged horse Pegasus, he fell

tigia vitans. and wander'd in the Aleian plains The plain truth of the story seems till he died. Hume and Richardson. to be, that in his latter days he grew His story is related at large in the mad with his poetry, which Milton fixth book of Homer's Iliad; but begs may never be his own case : it is to the latter part of it that Mil. Lest from this flying feed &c. He ton chiefly alludes, ver. 200. &c. says this to distinguish his from the Anots dn xxxVOS QrnX6sto whose wing be foared, as he speaks,

common Pegasus, above the flight of Toot JCOro IV's

ver. 4: Hται και κάππεδιον το Αλον οιος 21. Half yet remains unjung,] I αλατο,

understand this with Mr. Richardson, "O, Jupov xatidWV, WATOV av Opava that 'tis the half of the episode, noe

of the whole work, that is here

meant; for when the poem was diBut when at laft, difracted in his vided into but ten books, that edimind,

tion had this paffage at the beginForsook by Heav'n, forsaking hu- ning of the seventh as now. The man kind,

episode has two principal parts, the Wide o'er th' Aleian field he chofe war in Heaven, and the new creato itray,

tion; the one was fung, but the A long, forlorn, uncomfortable way, other remained unsung, and he is Pope. now entring upon it. --but narrower


[ocr errors]

A 4

Within the visible diurnal sphere;
Standing on earth, not rapt above the pole,
More fafe I fing with mortal voice, unchang'd
To hoarse or mute, though fall’n on evil days, 25
On evil days though fall’n, and evil tongues ;
In darkness, and with dangers compass'd round,
And folitude ; yet not alone, while thou
Visit' st


Numbers nightly, or when morn Parples the east : still govern thou my song, 30 Urania, and fit audience find, though few.

But bound. Bound here seems to be a supposes; and then all is good sense, participle as well as unsung. Half and there will be no need to read yet remains unsung; but this other with the Doctor, To hoarse or low. half is not rapt fo much into the

Pearce. invisible world as the former, it is

25. - though fallin on evil days,] confind in narrower compass, and The repetition and turn of the words bound within the visible sphere of is very beautiful, day.

-- though fallin on evil days, * 24. More safe I fing with mortal voice, unchang'd

Onevildays though fall'n, and evil To hoarse or mute,] Dr. Bentley

tongues ; &c. reads with lofty voice. Why mortal A lively picture this in a few lines vaice? says the Doctor. I answer, of the poet's wretched condition. because Milton had said in ver. 2. In darkness, though is still understood; that he had follow'd Urania's voice he was not become hoarse or mute divine. Again (fays the Doctor) if though in darkness, though he was his voice had grown boarse, would blind, and with dangers compass'd it not have been still mortal? and round, ard solitude, obnoxious to the what is a voice changed to mute? government, and having a world of Both these questions are satisfy'd by enemies among the royal party, and putting only a comma, as in the therefore oblig'd to live very much firit editions, (not a colon, as the in privacy and alone. And what Doctor has done) after mure. The strength of mind was 'it, that could words unchang'd to hoarse or mute not only support him under the refer to I, and not to voice, as he weight of thele misfortunes, but ena


« ПретходнаНастави »