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At last he yielded, from his purpose sway'd, Soon as the Sun forsakes the eastern main,
With vows of sacrifice and bumble pray'r:
The stars descend; and soon the morning ray
By war's wide licence and the ax profan'd: This anger of the gods and Cleon's fate:
Thither the monarch, from th'assembly, went The hero's fate his bold companions mourn'd,
A'one, his fury and despair to vent, And ev'ry breast with keen resentment burn'd.
And thus to Heav'n: “ Dread pow'r ! whose They in their beady transports straight decreed,
sov'reign sway His fall with vengeance to requite or bleed.
The fates of men and mortal things obey! I fear'd the angry gods; and gave command,
Prom me expect not surh applause to hear, With sail and oar, to fly the fatal strand; As fawning vot'ries to thine altars bear; Enray'd and sad, the mariners obey'd,
But truth severe. Although the forked brand, Unfurl'd the canvass, and the anchor weigh'd.
Which for destruction arms thy mighty hand, Our course, behind, the westem breezes sped,
Were level'd at my head; a mind I hold, And from the coast with heavy hearts we fled.
By present ills, or future, uncontrol'd. All day they favour'd, but with ev'ning ceas'd;
Beneath thy sway, the race of mortals groan ; And straight a tempest, from the stormy east,
Felicity sincere is felt by none : In opposition full, began to blow,
Delusive hope th’unpractis'd mind assails, And rear in ridges bigh the deep below.
And, by ten thousand treach'rous arts, prerails: Against its boist'rous sway in vain we strove;
Through all the Earth the fair deceiver strays, Obliquely to the Thracian coast we drove :
And wretched mau to misery betrays. Where Pelion lifts his head aloft in air,
Our crimes you punish, never teach to sbun, With pointed cliffs and precipices bare;
When, blind from folly, on our fate we run: Thither our course we steer'd, and on the strand
Hence sighs and groans thy tyrant reign consess, Descending, fix'd our cable to the land.
With ev'ry rueful symptom of distress. There twenty days we stay’d, and wish’d, in vain, Here wrar unchain'd exerts bis wasteful pow's ; A favourable breeze, to cross the main;
Here famive pines; diseases there devour, For with unceasing rage the tempest rav'd,
And lead a train of all the i!ls that know And o'er the rocky beach the occan heav'd.
To shorten life, or Icngthen it ia woe. At last with care the hero's Jimbs we burn'd,
All men are curst; but I, above the rest, And, water'd with our tears, his bones inurn'd.
With tenfold vengeance, for my crimes, opprest: There, where a promontory's height divides,
With hostile pow'rs beset my tott'ring reign, Extended in the deep, the parted tides,
The people wasted, and my children slain; His tomb is seen, which, from its airy stand,
In swift approach, I see destruction come, Marks to the mariner the distant land. (will But, with a mind unmov'd, I'll meet my doom; “ This, princes ! is the truth; and though the
For know, stern pow'r! whose vengeance has Of Heav'n, the sov'reign cause of good and ill,
decreed Has dash'd our hopes, and, for the good in view, That Creon, after all his sons, should bleed; With griefs amicts us and disasters new;
As from the summit of some desert rock, Yet, innocent of all, I justly claim
The sport of tempests, falls the leafless oak, To stand exempt from punishment, or blame. Of all its honours stript, thou ne'er shalt find, That zeal for Thebes 'gainst hospitable laws Weakly submiss, or stupidly resign'd Prevail'd, and ardour in my country's cause, This dauntless heart; but purpos'd to debate I freely bave confess'd; but sure,
Thy stero decrees, and burst the chains of fate." Was e'er permitted to inducement strong,
He said; and turning where the herals dstand This claims to be excus'd : our country's need, All night by turns, and wait their lord's command; With all who hear it, will for favour plead." Menestheus there and Hegesarder found, He ended thus. Unable to subdue
And Phemius sage, for valour once renown'd; His grief, the monarch from the throne withdrew :
He charg'd them thus: “ Beyond the eastern In silent wonder fix'd, the rest remain'd;
tow'rs, Till Clytuphon the gen'ral sense explain'd: Summon to meet in arms our martial pow'rs. " Your just defence, we mean not to refuse; In silence let them move; let signs command, Your prudence censure, or your zeal accuse : And mute obedience reign through ev'ry hand; To Heav'n we owe the valiant Cleon's fate,
For when the east with early twilight glows, With each disaster which aMicts the state.
We rush, from cover'd ambush, on our fues
Secure and unprepar'd: the truce we swore, When tempests with unlicens'd fury rare,
If he to whom each pow'r of ocean bends,
Already arm'd the valiant youth she found, Receiv'd them coming, and dispos’d the war. And arming for the fight his warriors round.
And now the Argives from their tents proceed, and thus began : “Brave prince! our foes appear fitb rites sepulchral to intomb the dead. For battle order'd, and the fight is near. The king of men, amid the fun'ral fires, Dauntless they come superior and elate, The chiefs assembles, and the work inspires. While fear unmans us, and resigns to fate. And thus the Pylian sage, in counsel wise: Would soine immortal from th' Olympian height " Princes ! I view, with wonder and surprise, Descend, and for a moment stop the fight; Yon field abandon’d, where the foe pursu'd From sad dejection rous’d, and cold despair, Their fun'ral rites before, with toil renew'd: We yet might arm is, and for war prepare; Not half tbeir dead interr’d, they now abstain, But if on buman aid we must depend, And silence reigns through all the smoky plain: Nor hope to see the fav’ring gods descend, Thence jealousy and fear possess my mind Great were the hero's praise, who now could boast Of faith infring’d, and treachery design'd: From ruin imminent to save the host ! Behind those woody heights, behind those tow'rs, The danger near some prompt expedient claims, I dread, in ambush laid, the Theban pow'rs; And prudence triumphs oft in worst extremes." With purpose to assault us, when they know Thus, in a form assum'd, the martial maid; That we, confiding, least expect a foe:
The generous warrior, thus replying, said: Let half the warriors arm, and stand prepar'd, “ In youth, I cannot hope to win the praise, From sudden violence, the host to guard; With which experience crowns a length of daysı. Wbile, in the mournful rites, the rest proceed, Weak are the hopes that on my counsels stand, Due to the honour'd reliques of the dead." To combats new, nor practis'ci in command :
Thus as he spoke; approaching from afar, But as the gods, to save a sinking state, The hostile pow'rs, embattled for the war, Or snatch an army from the jaws of fate, Appear’d; and streaming from their polish'd shields When prudence stands confounded, oft suggest A blaze of splendour brighten'd all the fields. A prompt expedient 10 some vulgar breast; And thus the king of men, with lifted eyes, To your discerning ear I shali expose And both his hands extended to the skies: What now my mind excites me to disclose. " Ye pow'ss supreme! whose unresisted sway Sav'd from th’unfinish'd bonours of the slain, The fate of men and mortal things obey ! The mingler spoils of forests load the plain; Let all the plagnes, which perjury attend, In heaps contiguous, round the camp they lie, At once, and sudden, on our foes descend : A fence too weak to stop the enemy : Let not the sacred seal of wine and gore, But if we mix them with the seeds of fire, The hands we plighted, and the oaths we swore, Which unextinguish'd glow in ev'ry pyre, Be now in vain; but, from your bright abodes, Against the fue a sudden wall shall rise, Confound the bold despisers of the gods."
Of flamé and smoke zecending to the skies : He pray'd ; and nearer came the hostile train, The steed dismay'd shall backward hurl the car; With swift approach advancing on the plain; Mix with the phalanx, and confound the war. Embattled thick ; as when, at fall of night, He said. The goddess, in her conscious breast, A shepherd, from some promontory's he ght, A mother's triumph for a son possess'd, Approaching froin the deep, a fog descries, Who emulates his sire in glorious deeds, Which hov'ring lightly o'er the billows fies; And, with his virtue, to his farine succeeds : By breczes borne, the solid soon it gains, Graceful the goddess turnd, and with a voice, Climbs the steep hills, and darkens all the plains: Bold and superior to the vulgar noise, Silent and swift the Theban pow'rs drew near; O'er all the field commands the woods to fire ; The chariots led, a phalanx clos'd the rear. Straight to obey 2 thousand henvis conspire,
Confusion straight through all the host arose, On ev'ry side the spreading flame extends, Stirr'd like the ocean when a tempest blows. And, roll'J in cloudy wreaths, the smoke ascends. Soine arm for fight; the rest to teriour yield, Creon beheld; enrag'd to be withstood ; Inactive stand, or tremiliog quit the field. Like some tierce lion whrn he meets a flood On ev'ry side, assaults the deafen'dear
Ortrench defensive, which his rige restrains The discord loud of tumult, rage, and fear. For focks unguarrel, left by carciess swains; Superior in his car, with ardent eyes,
O'er all the field he sends his eyes afar, The king of men through all the army flies; To mark fit entrance for a pointed war: The rash restrains, the cold with courage fires, Near on the right a narrow space he found, And all with hope and confidence inspires; Where fun'ral ashes sinok'd upon the ground: As when the deep, in liquid mountains hurlid, Thither the warriors of the Theban liost, Assaults the rocky limits of the world ;
Whose maitial skill he prizid and valour most,
The monarch sent, Chalcidamus the strong, Thick Ay the embers, where the coursers tread,
The king of men, to meet the tempest, fires Anil crowns the champaign with a lofty shade : His wav'ring bands, and ralour thus inspires. Oechalia's chief was added to the band,
“ Gods ! shall one fatal hour deface the praise For valour fam'd and skilful in command; Of all our sleepless nights, and bloody days? Erithæus, with him, bis brother, came,
Shall no just meed for all our toils remain ? Of worth unequal, and unequal fame.
Our labours, blood, and victories in vain ? Rhesus, with these, the Thracian leader, went, Shall Creon triumph, and bis impious brow To merit fame, by high achievernents, bent; Claim the fair wreath, to trutb and valour due? Of stature tall, he scorns the pointed spear, No, warriors ! by the hear'nly pow'rs, is weigh'd And crushes with his mace the ranks of war: Justice with wrong, in equal balance laid: With him twelve leaders of his native train, From Jove's high roof depend th' eternal scales, 'In combats, taught the bounding steed to rein, Wrong mounts defeated still, and right prevails By none surpass'd who boast superior skill Fear then no odds; on Heav'n itself depend, To send the winged arrow swift to kill,
Which falsehood will confound,and truth defend. Mov'd to the fight. The rest of vulgar name, He said ; and sudden in the shock they close, Though brave in comhat, were unknown to fame. Their shields and helmets ring with mutual blows.
Their bold invasion dauntless to oppose, Disorder dire the mingling ranks confounds, Full in the midst, the bulk of Ajax rose;
And shouts of triumph mix with dying sounds; Unarm'd be stood; but, in his mighly hand, As fire, with wasteful conflagration, spreads, Brandish'd, with gesture fierce, a burning brand, And kindles, in its course, the woodland shades, Snatch'd from the ashes of a fun'ral fire;
When, shooting sudden from the clouds above, An olive's trunk, five cubit lengths eptire. On some thick forest fall the flames of Jove; Arm'd for the fight, the Cretan monarca stood; The lofty oaks, the pines and cedars burn, And Merion, thirsting still for hostile blood; Their verdant honours all to ashes turn; The prince of Ithaca, with him who led
Loud roars the tempest; and the trembling swains The youtii, in Sycion, and Pellene, bred. See the wide havoc of the wasted plains : But ere they clos'd, the Thracian leader prest, Such seem'd the conflict; such the dire alarms, With cager courage, far before the rest;
From shouts of battle mix'd with din of arms. Him Ajax met, infam'd with equal rage : Phericles, first, Lycaou's valiant son, Between the wond'ring hosts the chiefs engage; The sage whose counsels propp'd the Theban Their weighty weapons round their heads they
Rose in the fight, superior to the rest, And swift, and heavy falls each thund'ring blow; And brave Democleon's fall his might coafest, As when in Ætna's caves the giant brood, The chief and leader of a valiant band, The one-ey'd servants of the Lemniau god, From fair Etone and th’ Asipian strand. In order round the burning anvil stand,
Next Asius, Ipbitus, and Crates fell; And forge, with weighty strokes, be forked brand: Terynthian Podius trede the path to Hell : The shaking hills their fervid toil confess, And Schedius, from Mazeta's fruitful plain, And echoes rattling through each dark recess: Met there his fate, and perish'd with the slain. So rag'd the fight; their mighty limbs they strain; Aw'd by their fall, the Argive bands give way ; And oft their pond'rous maces fall in rain: As yields some rampart to the ocean's sway, For neither chief was destin'd yet to bleed; Whe i rous'd to rage, it scorns opposing mounds, But fate at last the victory decreed.
And sweeps victorious through forbidden grounds. The Salaminian hero aim'd a stroke,
Bat Pallas, anxious for her fav'rite host, Which thund'ring on the Thracian helmet broke; Their best already wounded, many lost, Stunn'd by the boist'rous shock, the warrior reeld Ulysses sougbt : she found him, in the rear, With yiddy poise, then sunk upon the field. Wounded and faint, and leaning on his spear. Tbeir leader to defend, his native train
And thus in Mentor's form; “Brave prince! I With speed adrance, and guard him on the plain.
dread Against his fue, their threat'ning layces rise, Our hopes defeated, and our fall decreed: And aim'd at once, a storm of arcows flies; For conqu’ring on the right the foe prevails, Around the chief on ev'ry side they sing; And all defence against their fury fails ; One in his shoulder fix'd its barber sting.
While bere, in doubtful poise, the battle sways, Amaz'd he stood, nor could the fight repew; And various fates alternately obeys; But slow and sullen from the foe withshrew. If great Tydides, who belolds from far Straight to the charge Idoineneus proceeds, Our danger imminent, yet siuns the war, With hardy Merion, try'd in martial deeds, Held by resentinent, or some cause unknown, Inertes' valiant son, and he rbo led
Regardless of our safety and his own, The youth in Sycion, and Pellene, bred ; Would rise to aid us; yet we might respire, With force united, these the foe sustain, And Creon, frustrated, again retire. And wasteful havoc loads the purple plain : Great were his praise, who could the chief per. In doubtful poise the scales of combat sway'd, In peril so extreme, the host to aid. (suade, And various fates alternately obey'd.
The fittest you, who boast the happy skill, But now the flames, which harrd.th' invading With pleasing words, to more the fixed will; Sunk to the wasted wood, in ashes glow; (foe, Though Nestor justly merits equal fame, Thebes rushes to the fight; their polish'd shields A friend the soenest will a friend reclaim.” Gleain through the smoke, and brighten all the And tbus Ulysses to the martial maid:
“ I cannot bopo the beru to persuade:
The source unknown from which his rage pro-, Or Erymanthus ;' while in fix'd amaze, ceeds,
At awful distance held, the satyrs gaze.
From Calydon I led my martial pow'rs.
With me she brav'd the terrours of the field: Confounds his steady temper, else serene :
Unknown and unrewarded, from my side
He spoke; his words the martial maid admir'd; If of your counsel«, I, or works, partake;
Till twenty mornings in the east shall rise,
The hero thus. Laertes' son reply'd : While others, more remote, complain'd aloud : “Oft have I heard what now is verify'd; With pleasing words he sooth'd them as he went, That still when passion reigns without control, And sought their valiant leader in bis tent: Its sway confounds and darkens all the soul, Him pond'ring deep in his distracted mind, If Thebes, by perjury, the gods provok’d, He found, and sitting sad, with bead declin'd. The vengeance slighted, by themselves invok'd; He thus address'd bim: “Will the news, I bring, Assaulted us, secure, with hostile arms, Afflict, or gratify, th’ Etolian king?
And mix'd our pious rites with dire alarıns : That wav'ring on the brink of foul defeat, With better faith, by faithless Creon sway'do Without the hopes of success or retreat,
Will they at last restore the captive maid? Our valiant bands th’ unequal fight maintain ;
When from their battlements and lofty spires, Their best already wounded, many slain.' They see their champaign shine with hostile If treach'rous Thebes has brib'd you with her
And, pitch'd around them, hosts of armed foes, And bought the venal faith which once you swore; With strict embrace,their straiten'd wallsencloses Has promis'd precious ore, or lovely dames, The gods they scorn as impotent, and vain : And pays to lust the price which treason claims: What will they do, when you alone remain? Name but the proffers of the perjur'd king, Our princes fallin, the vulgar warriors fed, And more, and better, from your friends I'll bring; Shall to your tent the captive fair be led ? Vast sums of precious ore, and greater far Or rather must you see her matchless charms Than Thebes, in peace, had treasur'd for the war; Reserv'd to bless some happier rival's arıns: Or, though, to gratify thy boundless mind, While rage and jealousy divide your breast, Her private wealth and public were combin'd. No present friend to pity or assist : If beauty's pow'r your am'rous heart inflames, Now rather rise; and, ere it is too late, Unrival'd are Achaia's lovely dames;
Rescue our armies from impending fate. Her fairest dames Adrastus shall bestow, The captive maid uninjur'd you'll regain ; And purchase thus the aid you freely owe. Force oft obtains what justice asks in vain. Gods! that our armies e'er should need to fear With success thus your wishes shall be crown'd, Destruction, and the son of Tydeus near !” Which trust in Thebes would frustrate and conUlysses thus ; and Tydeus' son again :
found.” " Your false reproaches aggravate my pain Ulysses thus : his weighty words inclin'd, Too great already : in my heart I feel
Long tortur'd with suspense, the hero's mind; Its venom'd sting, more sharp than pointed steel. As settling winds the moving deep control, No bribe persuades, or promise from the foe, And teach the wav'ring billows how to rull. My oath to vi'late, and the war forego :
Straight from his seat th' Etolian warrior rose; In vain for this were all the precious store, His inighty limbs the martial greares enclose; Wbich trading Zidon wafts from shore to shore ; | His breast and thighs in polish'd steel he dress'd; With all that rich Iberia yet contains,
A plumed helmet next his temples prees'd: Safe and unrified in her golden veins.
From the broad baldric, round his shoulders The source from which my miseries arise,
flung, The cause, which to the host my aid denies, His shining sword and starry falchion hung: With truth I shall relate; and hope to claim The spear he last assum’d, and pond'rous shield, Your friendly sympathy, for groundless blame. With martial grace, and issu'd to the field : In yonder walls a captive maid remains,
To mingle in the fight, with eager haste To me more dear tban all the world contains ; He rush'd, nor call’d his warriors as he past. Fairer she is thao nymph was ever fair;
Ulysses these conven'd; his prudent care Pallas in stature and majestic air ;
Their ranks dispos'd, and led them to the war. As Venus soft, with Cynthia's sprightly grace, Afar distinguish'd by his armour bright, When on Taïgetus she leads the chase,
With shouts Tydides rous'd the ling'ring light;
Through all the host his martial voice resounds, Creon perceiv'd, where ruling on the right
To stern despair, his unsubmitting mind:
Yet, vers'd in all the various turns of fate, Amidst the dangers of some per lous coast:
The brisk assault to rule, or safe retreat, So to his wishing friends Tydides came;
He drew his firm battalions from the fue, Their danger such before, their joy the same. In martial order, regularly slow.
Phericles saw; and, springing from the throng, The Argive leaders, thund'ring in the rear, Call'd the bold Thebans, as be rush'd along : Still forwards on the yielding squadrons bear : “ Ye gen'rous youths! whum fair Boeotia breeds, The strife with unabated fury burns, The nurse of valour and heroic deeds;
They stop, they combat, and retreat by turns; Let not, though oft renew'd, these tedious toils
As the grim lion sourly leaves the plains, Your martial ardour quench, and damp your Ly dogs compellid, and bands of armed stains; souls.
Indignant to his woody haunts he goes, Tydides comes; and leads, in armour bright, And with retorted glare restrains his foes. His native bands, impatieut for the fight;
Mean while Tydides, near the Cadmean gate, Myself the first the hero's arm shall try, Urg'd with incessant toil the work of fate; And teach you how to conquer, or to die.
Towards the walls, an undistinguish'd throng, We strive not now, as when, in days of peace, The victors and the vanquish’d, rush'd along. Some prince's hymeneal rites to grace,
Access to both the guarded wall denies; In listed fields bedew'd with fragrant oil, From ev'ry tow'r, a storm of jarlins flies; In combat feign'd, the mimic warriors toil; Thick as the hail descends, when Boreas flings Alike the victors, and the vanquish'd fare, The rattling tempest from his airy wings : And genial feasts, to both, conclude the war:
So thick the jav'lins fell, and pointed spears; We now must conquer; or it stands decreed
Behind them close, another host appears, That Thebes shall perish, and her people bleed. In order'd columns rang'd, by Creon led No hopes of peace remain; por can we find Ulysses saw; and thus to Diomed: New gods to witness, or new oaths to bind, “ Bold as you are, avoid these guarded tow'rs, The first infring'd: and therefore must prepare From loose pursuit recal your scatter'd pow'rs: To stand or perish by the lot of war:
See Creon comes; bis thick embattled train, Then let us all undaunted brave our fate : In phalanx join'd, approaches from the plain. To stop is doubtful, desp'rate to retreat."
Here if we stay th' unequal fight to prove, The hero thus; and to the battle led;
The tow'rs and ramparts threaten from abore Like Mars, he seem'd, in radiant arınour clad, With darts and stones; while to th’invading foe, Tow'ring sublime; behind his ample shield, In order loose, our scatter'd ranks we show; He mov'd to meet Tydides on the fiell:
Nor by your matchless valour hope, in rain, As when at noon, descending to the rills,
Such odds to conquer, and the fight maintain; Two herds encounter, from the neighb’ring hills; Against an army single force must lose; Before the rest, the rival bulls prepare,
Immod'rate courage still like folly shows. With awful prelude, for th' approaching war; See where into the field yon turret calls, With desp:rate horns they plough the smoking Drawn to a point the long-extended walls : ground;
There force your way, and specdily regain Their hideous rear the hollow cares resound; The space, and safety of the open plain.” Heav'd o'er their backs the streaming sand as- Ulysses thus; and, by his prudence sway'd, cends;
The martial son of Tydeus straight obey'd. Their stern encounter both the herds suspends: Thrice to the height the hero rais'd his voice, So met the chiefs; and such amazement quell'd Loud as the silver trumpet's martial noise, The rest, and in suspense the con:bat beld. The signal of retreat; his warriors heard, Tydides first his weighty weapon threw,
And round their chief in order'd ranks appear'd, Wide of the mark with erring force it flew. Drawn from the mirgled tumult of the plain; Phericles ! thine succeeds with happier aim, As, sever'd on the floor, the golden grain Full to the center of the shield it caine:
Swells to a heap; while, whirling through the But slightly juin'd, unequal to the stroke,
skies, Short from the steel, the staff in splinters broke. The dusty chaffin thick disorder flies; With grief Tydides saw his aim deceivid; Tydides leads; between the guarded tow'rg From off the field a pond'sous rock he beav'd; And hostile ranks, he draws bis martial pow'rs With figures rude of antique sculpture graç'd, Towards the plain; as mariners, with oar It mark'd the reliques of a man dect as’d. And sail, avoid some promontory's shore; Push'd at his foe the weighty mass he flung; When, caught between the ocean and the land, Thund'ring it fell; the Theban helmet rung: A sudden tempest bears them on the strand; Decp with the brain the dinted steel it mix'd, The stem opposing to its boist'rous sway, and lifeless, on the ground, the warrior fix'd.
They shun the cape and stretch into the bay: Aw'd by bis fall, the Theban bands retire; So scap'd Tydides. Cover'd by their tow'rs, As focks defenceless shun a lion's ire;
In safety stood retir'd the Theban powrs, At once they yield, unable to withstand
For from above an iron tempest rain’d,
And the incursions of the foe restrain'da