About the mountain, thrice, but thrice in vain, He strove to force the quarry at the gate, And thrice sat down o'erwearied in the vale. There stood a pointed rock, abrupt and rude, That high o'erlooked the rest, close at the back Of the fell monster's den, where birds obscene Of ominous note resorted, choughs and daws. This, as it leaned obliquely to the left, Threatening the stream below, he from the right Pushed with his utmost strength, and to and fro He shook the mass, loosening its lowest base, Then shoved it from its seat; down fell the pile; Sky thundered at the fall; the banks give way, The affrighted stream flows upward to his source. Behold the kennel of the brute exposed, The gloomy vault laid open. So, if chance Earth yawning to the centre should disclose The mansions, the pale mansions of the dead, Loathed by the gods, such would the gulf appear, And the ghosts tremble at the sight of day. The monster braying with unusual din Within his hollow lair, and sore amazed To see such sudden inroads of the light, Alcides pressed him close with what at hand Lay readiest, stumps of trees, and fragments huge Of millstone size. He, (for escape was none,) Wondrous to tell! forth from his gorge discharged A smoky cloud that darkened all the den; Wreath after wreath he vomited amain, The smothering vapour mixed with fiery sparks; No sight could penetrate the veil obscure. The hero, more provoked, endured not this, But with a headlong leap he rushed to where The thickest cloud enveloped his abode; There grasped he Cacus, spite of all his fires, Till crushed within his arms, the monster shows His bloodless throat, now dry with panting hard, And his pressed eyeballs start. Soon he tears down The barricade of rock, the dark abyss Lies open; and the imprisoned bulls, the theft He had with oaths denied, are brought to light; By the heels the miscreant carcase is dragged forth, His face, his eyes, all terrible, his breast Beset with bristles, and his sooty jaws Are viewed with wonder never to be cloyed. Hence the celebrity thou seest, and hence This festal day. Potitius first enjoined Posterity these solemn rites, he first With those who bear the great Pinarian name To Hercules devoted, in the grove This altar built, deemed sacred in the highest By us, and sacred ever to be deemed. 2-L.

Come, then, my friends, and bind your youthful brows
In praise of such deliverance, and hold forth
The brimming cup; your deities and ours
Are now the same, then drink, and freely too."
So saying, he twisted round his reverend locks
A variegated poplar wreath, and filled
If is right hand with a consecrated bowl.
At once all pour libations on the board,
All offer prayer. And now the radiant sphere
Ot day descending, eventide drew near.
When first Potitius with the priests advanced,
Begirt with skins and torches in their hands.
High piled with meats of savoury taste, they ranged
The chargers, and renewed the grateful feast.
Then came the Salii, crowned with poplar too,
Circling the blazing altar; here the youth
Advanced, a choir harmonious, there were heard
The reverend seers responsive; praise they sung,
Much praise in honour of Alcides' deeds;
How first with infant gripe two serpents huge
He strangled, sent from Juno; next they sung,
How Troja and Oechalia he destroyed,
Fair cities both, and many a toilsome task
Beneath Eurystheus, (so his stepdame willed.)
Achieved victorious. Thou, the cloud-born pair,
Hylaeus fierce and Pholus, monstrous twins,
Thou slewest the minotaur, the plague of Crete,
And the vast lion of the Nemean rock;
Thee Hell, and Cerberus, Hell's porter, feared,
Stretched in his den upon his half-gnawed bones.
Thee no abhorred form, not even the vast
Typhceus could appal, though clad in arms.
Hail, true born son of Jove, among the gods
At length enrolled, nor least illustrious thou,
Haste thee propitious, and approve our songs!—
Thus hymned the chorus; above all they sing
The cave of Cacus, and the flames he breathed.
The whole grove echoes, and the hills resound.
The rites performed, all hasten to the town:
The king, bending with age, held as he went
./Eneas and his Pallas by the hand,
With much variety of pleasing talk
Shortening the way. ^Eneas, with a smile,
Looks round him, charmed with the delightful scene,
And many a question asks, and much he learns
Of heroes far renowned in ancient times.
Then spake Evander: "These extensive groves
Were once inhabited by fauns and nymphs
Produced beneath their shades, and a rude race
Of men, the progeny uncouth of elms
And knotted oaks. They no refinement knew
Of laws or manners civilised, to yoke

The steer, with forecast provident to store

The hoarded grain, or manage what they had,

But browsed like beasts upon the leafy boughs,

Or fed voracious on their hunted prey.

An exile from Olympus, and expelled

His native realm by thunder-bearing Jove,

First Saturn came. He from the mountains drew

This herd of men untractable and fierce,

And gave them laws, and called his hiding place,

This growth of forests, Latium. Such the peace

I lis land possessed, the golden age was then,

So famed in story; till by slow degrees

Far other times, and of far different hue,

Succeeded, thirst of gold and thirst of blood.

Then came Ausonian bands, and armed hosts

From Sicily, and Latium often changed

Her master and her name. At length arose

Kings, of whom Tybris of gigantic form

Was chief; and we Italians since have called

The river by his name; thus Albula,

(So was the country called in ancient days),

Was quite forgot. Me from my native land

An exile, through the dangerous ocean driven,

Resistless fortune and relentless fate

Placed where thou seest me. Phoebus, and

The nymph Carmentis, with maternal care

Attendant on my wanderings, fixed me here.

[Ten lines omitted.]

He said, and showed him the Tarpeian rock,
And the rude spot where now the capitol
Stands all magnificent and bright with gold,
Then overgrown with thorns. And yet even then
The swains beheld that sacred scene with awe;
The grove, the rock, inspired religious fear.
This grove, he said, that crowns the lofty top
Of this fair hill, some deity, we know,
Inhabits, but what deity we doubt.
The Arcadians speak of Jupiter himself,
That they have often seen him, shaking here
His gloomy aegis, while the thunder-storms
Came rolling all around him. Turn thine eyes,
Behold that ruin; those dismantled walls,

Where once two towns, Ianiculum ,

By Janus this, and that by Saturn built,
Saturnia. Such discourse brought them beneath
The roof of poor Evander; thence they saw,
Where now the proud and stately forum stands,
The grazing herds wide scattered o'er the field.
Soon as he entered—Hercules, he said,
Victorious Hercules, on this threshold trod,
These walls contained him, humble as they arc.

Dare to despise magnificence, my friend,
Prove thy divine descent by worth divine,
Nor view with haughty scorn this mean abode.
So saying, he led /Eneas by the hand,
And placed him on a cushion stuffed with leaves,
Spread with the skin of a Lybistian bear.

[The Episode of Venus and Vulcan omitted.]

While thus in Lemnos Vulcan was employed,
Awakened by the gentle dawn of day,
And the shrill song of birds beneath the eaves
Of his low mansion, old Evander rose.
His tunic, and the sandals on his feet,
And his good sword well girded to his side,
A panther's skin dependent from his left
And over his right shoulder thrown aslant,
Thus was he clad. Two mastiffs followed him,
His whole retinue and his nightly guard.


Scribis, ut oblectem.

You bid me write to amuse the tedious hours,

And save from withering my poetic powers;

Hard is the task, my friend, for verse should flow

From the free mind, not fettered down by woe.

Restless amidst unceasing tempests tossed,

Whoe'er has cause for sorrow, I have most.

Would you bid Priam laugh, his sons all slain;

Or childless Niobe from tears refrain,

Join the gay dance, and lead the festive train?

Does grief or study most befit the mind

To this remote, this barbarous nook confined?

Could you impart to my unshaken breast

The fortitude by Socrates possessed,

Soon would it sink beneath such woes as mine,

For what is human strength to wrath divine?

Wise as he was, and Heaven pronounced him so,

My sufferings would have laid that wisdom low.

Could I forget my country, thee and all,

And e'en the offence to which I owe my fall,

Yet fear alone would freeze the poet's vein,

While hostile troops swarm o'er the dreary plain.

Add that the fatal rust of long disuse

Unfits me for the service of the Muse.

Thistles and weeds are all we can expect

From the best soil impoverished by neglect;

Unexercised, and to his stall confined,

The fleetest racer would be left behind:

The best built bark that cleaves the watery way,

Laid useless by, would moulder and decay,—

No hope remains that time shall me restore,

Mean as I was, to what I was before.

Think how a series of desponding cares

Benumbs the genius and its force impairs.

How oft, as now, on this devoted sheet,

My verse constrained to move with measured feet,

Reluctant and laborious limps along,

And proves itself a wretched exile's song.

What is it tunes the most melodious lays?

'Tis emulation and the thirst of praise,

A noble thirst, and not unknown to me,

While smoothly wafted on a calmer sea.

But can a wretch like Ovid pant for fame?

No, rather let the world forget my name.

Is it because that world approved my strain,

You prompt me to the same pursuit again?

No, let the Nine the ungrateful truth excuse,

I charge my hopeless ruin on the Muse,

And, like Perillus, meet my just desert,

The victim of my own pernicious art;

Fool that I was to be so warned in vain,

And shipwrecked once, to tempt the deep again i

1ll fares the bard in this unlettered land,

None to consult, and none to understand.

The purest verse has no admirers here,

Their own rude language only suits their ear.

Rude as it is, at length familiar grown,

I learn it, and almost unlearn my own ;—

Yet to say truth, even here the Muse disdains

Confinement, and attempts her former strains,

But finds the strong desire is not the power,

And what her taste condemns, the flames devour.

A part, perhaps, like this, escapes the doom,

And though unworthy, finds a friend at Rome;

But oh the cruel art, that could undo

Its votary thus! would that could perish too!


Vides, ut alta stet nive candidum
Soracte; . . . .

Seest thou yon mountain laden with deep snow
The groves beneath their fleey burdens bow,

The streams, congealed, forget to flow; Come, thaw the cold, and lay a cheerful pil?

Of fuel on the hearth; Broach the best cask, and make old Winter smile

With seasonable mirth.

This be our part,—let Heaven dispose the rest; If Jove command, the winds shall sleep

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