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But the great god, whose thunder rends the skies,
· While thoughtless we indulge the genial rite,
The argument. ADVENTURES WITH ÆOLUS, THE LÆSTRYGONS, AND CIRCE. Ulysses arrives at the island of Æolus, who gives him pros
perous winds, and encloses the adverse ones in a bag, which his companions untying, they are driven back again, and rejected. Then they sail to the Læstrygons, where they lose eleven ships, and, with one only remaining, proceed to the island of Circe. Eurylochus is sent first with some companions, all which, except Eurylochus, are transformed into swine. Ulysses then undertakes the adventure, and by the help of Mercury, who gives him the herb Moly, overcomes the enchantress, and procures the restoration of his men. After a year's stay with her, he prepares at her instigation for his voyage to the infernal shades.
At length we reach'd Eolia's seagirt shore, Where great Hippotades the sceptre bore; A floating isle! High raised by toil divine, Strong walls of brass the rocky coast confine. Six blooming youths, in private grandeur bred, And six fair daughters graced the royal bed: These sons their sisters wed, and all remain Their parent's pride, and pleasure of their reign. All day they feast, all day the bowls fly round, And joy and music through the isle resound: At night each pair on splendid carpets lay, And crown'd with love the pleasures of the day.
* This happy port affords our wandering fleet A month's reception, and a safe retreat.
Full oft the monarch urged me to relate
oar; The tenth presents our welcome native shore: The hills display the beacon's friendly light, And rising mountains gain upon our sight. Then first my eyes, by watchful toils oppress’d, Complied to take the balmy gifts of rest; Then first my hands did from the rudder part (So much the love of home possess'd my heart), When lo! on board a fond debate arose; What rare device those vessels might enclose? What sum, what prize from Æolus I brought? Whilst to his neighbour each express'd his
thought“Say,whence,ye gods,contending nations strive Who most shall please, who most our hero give? Long have his coffers groan’d with Trojan spoils; Whilst we, the wretched partners of his toils,
Reproach'd by want, our fruitless labours mourn,
Meanwhile our vessels plough the liquid plain, And soon the known Æolian coast regain, Our groans the rocks remurmur'd to the main. We leap'd on shore, and with a scanty feast Our thirst and hunger hastily repress'd; That done, two chosen heralds straight attend Our second progress to my royal friend; And him amidst his jovial sons we found; The banquet steaming, and the goblets crown'd: There humbly stopp'd with conscious shame and
Nor nearer than the gate presumed to draw. But soon his sons their well known guest descried, And starting from their couches loudly cried
Ulysses here! what demon couldst thou meet To thwart thy passage and repel thy fleet? Wast thou not furnish'd by our choicest care For Greece, for home, and all thy soul held dear?" Thus they; in silence long my fate I mourn'd, At length these words with accent low return'd
“Me, lock’d in sleep, my faithless crew bereft
alone can give.” • Thus I with art to move their pity tried, And touch'd the youths; but their stern sire re
plied “Vile wretch, be gone! this instant I command Thy fleet accursed to leave our hallow'd land. His baneful suit pollutes these bless'd abodes, Whose fate proclaims him hateful to the gods.”
• Thus fierce he said: we sighing went our way, And with desponding hearts put off to sea. The sailors spent with toils their folly mourn, But mour in vain; no prospect of return. Six days and nights a doubtful course we steer, The next proud Lamos' stately towers appear, And Læstrygonia's gates arise distinct in air. The shepherd quitting here at night the plain, Calls, to succeed his cares, the watchful swain: But he that scorns the chains of sleep to wear, And adds the herdsman's to the shepherd's care, So near the pastures, and so short the way, His double toils may claim a double pay, And join the labours of the night and day.
Within a long recess a bay there lies, Edged round with cliffs, high-pointing to the skies; The jutting shores that swell on either side Contract its mouth, and break the rushing tide. Our eager sailors seize the fair retreat, And bound within the port their crowded fleet: For here retired the sinking billows sleep, And smiling calmness silver'd o'er the deep,