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Apollo saw, and could not keep from tears.
Now all seem'd ready to be overthrown;
His strength was wither'd, ev'ry hope was flown.
Hermes, exulting at this great surprise,
Shouted for joy, and fill'd the air with cries;
Instant he sent the Queen to shades below,
And of her spoils made a triumphant show.
But in return, and in his mid career,
Fell his brave Knight, beneath the Monarch's spear.
Phoebus, however, did not yet despair,
But still fought on with courage and with care.
He had but two poor common men to show,
And Mars's favourite with his iv'ry bow.
The thoughts of ruin made 'em dare their best
To save their King, so fatally distress'd.
But the sad hour required not such an aid;
And Hermes breath'd revenge where'er he stray'd.
Fierce comes the sable Queen with fatal threat,
Surrounds the monarch in his royal seat;
Rush'd here and there, nor rested till she slew
The last remainder of the whiten'd crew.
Sole stood the King, the midst of all the plain,
Weak and defenceless, his companions slain.
As when the ruddy morn ascending high
Has chased the twinkling stars from all the sky,
Your star, fair Venus, still retains its light,
And, loveliest, goes the latest out of sight.
No safety's left, no gleams of hope remain;
Yet did he not as vanquish'd quit the plain,
But tried to shut himself between the foe,-
Unhurt through swords and spears he hoped to go,
Until no room was left to shun the fatal blow.
For if none threaten'd his immediate fate,
And his next move must ruin all his state,
All their past toil and labour is in vain,
Vain all the bloody carnage of the plain,-
Neither would triumph then, the laurel neither gain.
Therefore through each void space and desert tent,
By different moves his various course he bent:
The Black King watch'd him with observant eye,
Follow'd him close, but left him room to fly.
Then when he saw him take the farthest line,
He sent the Queen his motions to confine,
And guard the second rank, that he could go
No farther now than to that distant row.
The sable monarch then with cheerful mien
Approach'd, but always with one space between.
But as the King stood o'er against him there,
Helpless, forlorn, and sunk in his despair,
The martial Queen her lucky moment knew,
Seized on the farthest seat with fatal view,
Nor left th' unhappy King a place to flee unto.
At length in vengeance her keen sword she draws,
Slew him, and ended thus the bloody cause :
And all the Gods around approved it with applause.
The victor could not from his insults keep,
But laugh'd and sneer'd to see Apollo weep.
Jove call'd him near, and gave him in his hand
The powerful, happy, and mysterious wand
By which the Shades are call'd to purer day,
When penal fire has purged their sins away;
By which the guilty are condemn'd to dwell
In the dark mansions of the deepest hell;
By which he gives us sleep, or sleep denies,
And closes at the last the dying eyes.
Soon after this, the heavenly victor brought
The Game on earth, and first th' Italians taught.
For (as they say) fair Scacchis he espied
Feeding her cygnets in the silver tide,
(Scacchis, the loveliest Seriad of the place)
And as she stray'd, took her to his embrace.
Then, to reward her for her virtue lost,
Gave her the men and chequer'd board, emboss'd
With gold and silver curiously inlay'd,
And taught her how the game was to be play'd.
Ev'n now 'tis honour'd with her happy name;
And Rome and all the world admire the game.
which the Seriads told me heretofore,
When my boy-notes amused the Serian shore.
[Under this head some editors of Goldsmith's Poems give a number of small pieces extracted from the prose works. Most of these, however, are really not translations by Goldsmith, as will be seen by reference to (for instance) those in the Belles Lettres' essays (v. i.), which are translations by Francis and others. Of the few that remain, we give the following from works by Goldsmith not included in the present edition.-ED.]
FROM THE HISTORY OF THE EARTH AND ANIMATED NATURE.'
[1774, vol. v., p. 312.]
Addison, in some beautiful Latin lines inserted in the 'Spectator,' is entirely of opinion that birds observe a strict chastity of manners, and never admit the caresses of a different tribe.1
CHASTE are their instincts, faithful is their fire,
No foreign beauty tempts to false desire:
The snow-white vesture, and the glittering crown,
The simple plumage, or the glossy down
Prompt not their love. The patriot bird pursues
His well acquainted tints, and kindred hues.
Hence through their tribes no mix'd, polluted flame,
No monster breed to mark the groves with shame;
But the chaste blackbird, to its partner true,
Thinks black alone is beauty's favourite hue;
The nightingale, with mutual passion blest,
Sings to its mate, and nightly charms the nest:
While the dark owl to court its partner flies,
And owns its offspring in their yellow eyes.
1 'Spectator,' No. 412.-Ed.
FROM THE SAME.
[V. iii., p. 6—Of the Salmon.]
Of all the fish that graze beneath the flood,
He only ruminates his former food.
FROM THE COMIC ROMANCE' OF SCARRON.1
THUS when soft love subdues the heart
With smiling hopes, and chilling fears,
The soul rejects the aid of art,
And speaks in moments more than years.
SOME OTHER PIECES OF POETRY
by Goldsmith will be found in his prose works as follows:
IN THE CITIZEN OF THE WORLD' [1760-2].
On Seeing Mrs. ** Perform, &c.
Letter LXXXV. See v. iii.
On the Death of the Right Hon. * *
Letter CVI. See v. iii.
1 The Comic Romance of Monsieur Scarron, translated by Oliver Goldsmith' London, W. Griffin, 2 vols. 12mo, 1776. This was put forth two years after Goldsmith's death as being mainly by him; and it is generally admitted that the poet had at least undertaken to furnish such a translation. But most of the poetical pieces in these two volumes have been traced to a previous translation, and the work generally is now classed with those bearing Goldsmith's name which are denominated "doubtful"-though the above four lines are viewed by Mr. Bolton Corney and others as being certainly from Goldsmith's hand.—ED.
Epigram to the Gentlemen Reflected on in the 'Rosciad.'
Letter CXIII. See v. iii.
To G. C. and R. L.
Letter CXIII. See v. iii.
Translation of a South American Ode.
Letter CXVII. See v. iii.
IN THE GOOD-NATURED MAN' .
Epilogue; spoken by Mrs. Bulkley.
IN SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER' .
Song: Let Schoolmasters puzzle their Brain.
Act I. See v. ii.
Epilogue; spoken by Mrs. Bulkley in the character of Miss Hardcastle.