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With copious streams the shining vase supplies
A silver laver of capacious size.
They wash. The tables in fair order spread,
The glittering canisters are crown'd with bread;
Viands of various kinds allure the taste,
Of choicest sort and savour; rich repast!
While Eteoneus portions out the shares,
Atrides' son the purple draught prepares.
And now (each sated with the genial feast,
And the short rage of thirst and hunger ceased)
Ulysses' son, with his illustrious friend,
The horses join, the polish'd cars ascend :
Along the court the fiery steeds rebound,
And the wide portal echoes to the sound.
The king precedes; a bowl with fragrant wine
(Libation destined to the powers divine)
His right hand held : before the steeds he stands,
Then, mix'd with prayers, he utters these com-
mands.

[know * Farewell and prosper, youths !--let Nestor What grateful thoughts still in this bosom glow, For all the proofs of his paternal care, Through the long dangers of the ten years' war.' “Ah! doubt not our report (the prince rejoin'd) Of all the virtues of thy generous mind. And oh! return'd, might we Ulysses meet! To him thy presents show, thy words repeat: How will each speech his grateful wonder raise ! How will each gift indulge us in thy praise!'

Scarce ended thus the prince, when on the right Advanced the bird of Jove; auspicious sight! A milk-white fowl his clenching talons bore, With care domestic pamper'd at the floor. Peasants in vain with threatening cries pursue, In solemn speed the bird majestic flew

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Full dexter to the car: the prosperous sight
Fill'd every

breast with wonder and delight. But Nestor's son the cheerful silence broke, And in these words the Spartan chief bespoke

Say if to us the gods these omens send, Or fates peculiar to thyself portend? [press'd,

Whilst yet the monarch paused, with doubts opThe beauteous queen relieved his labouring breast. Hear me (she cried) to whom the gods have

given To read this sign, and mystic sense of heaven. As thus the plumy sovereign of the air Left on the mountain's brow his callow care, And wander'd through the wide etherial way Το. pour his wrath on yon

luxurious

prey; So shall thy godlike father, toss'd in vain Through all the dangers of the boundless main, Arrive (or is perchance already come) From slaughter'd gluttons to release the dome.'

* Oh! if this promised bliss by thundering Jove (The prince replied) stand fix'd in fate above; To thee, as to some god, I'll temples raise, And crown thy costly altars with the blaze.'

He said ; and, bending o'er his chariot, fung Athwart the fiery steeds the smarting thong; The bounding shafts upon the harness play, Till night descending intercepts the way. To Diocles, at Pheræ, they repair, Whose boasted sire was sacred Alpheus' heir ; With him all night the youthful strangers stay'd, Nor found the hospitable rites unpaid. But soon as morning, from her orient bed, Had tinged the mountains with her earliest red, They join’d the steeds, and on the chariot sprung; The brazen portals in their passage rung.

To Pylos soon they came: when thus begun To Nestor's heir Ulysses' godlike son• Let not Pisistratus in vain be press’d, Nor unconsenting hear his friend's request; His friend by long hereditary claim, In toils his equal, and in years the same. No further from our vessel, I implore, The coursers drive, but lash them to the shore. Too long thy father would his friend detain; I dread his proffer'd kindness, urged in vain.'

The hero paused, and ponder'd this request, While love and duty warr’d within his breast. At length resolved, he turn’d his ready hand, And lash'd his panting coursers to the strand. There, while within the

роор

with care he stored The regal presents of the Spartan lord; • With speed be gone (said he), call every mate, Ere yet to Nestor I the tale relate. 'Tis true, the fervour of his generous heart Brooks no repulse, nor couldst thou soon depart; Himself will seek thee here, nor wilt thou find, In words alone, the Pylian monarch kind. But when arrived he thy return shall know, How will his breast with honest fury glow !! This said, the sounding strokes his horses fire, And soon he reach'd the palace of his sire.

· Now (cried Telemachus) with speedy care Hoist every sail, and every oar prepare.' Swift as the word his willing mates obey, And seize their seats, impatient for the sea.

Meantime the prince with sacrifice adores Minerva, and her guardian aid implores ; When lo! a wretch ran breathless to the shore, New from his crime, and reeking yet with gore:

78.

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A seer he was, from great Melampus sprung,
Melampus, who in Pylos flourish'd long,
Till, urged by wrongs, a foreign realm he chose,
Far from the hateful cause of all his woes.
Neleus his treasures one long year detains;
As long, he groan’d in Phylacus's chains :
Meantime, what anguish and what rage combined,
For lovely Pero rack'd his labouring mind!
Yet scaped he death; and, vengeful of his wrong,
To Pylos drove the lowing herds along:
Then (Neleus vanquish’d, and consign'd the fair
To Bias' arms) he sought a foreign air :
Argos the rich for his retreat he chose,
There form’d his empire; there his palace rose.
From him Antiphates and Mantius came :
The first begot Oicleus great in fame,
And he Amphiaraus, immortal name!
The people's saviour, and divinely wise,
Beloved by Jove, and him who gilds the skies,
Yet short his date of life! by female pride he dies.
From Mantius, Clitus; whom Aurora's love
Snatch'd for his beauty to the thrones above:
And Polyphides; on whom Phæbus shone
With fullest rays, Amphiaraus now gone;
In Hyperesia's groves he made abode,
And taught mankind the counsels of the god.
From him sprung Theoclymenus, who found
(The sacred wine yet foaming on the ground)
Telemachus: whom, as to Heaven he press’d
His ardent vows, the stranger thus address’d-

• O thou! that dost thy happy course prepare With pure libations, and with solemn prayer ; By that dread power to whom thy vows are paid; By all the lives of these; thy own dear head;

Declare, sincerely to no foe's demand,
Thy name, thy lineage, and paternal land.'

Prepare then (said Telemachus) to know
A tale from falsehood free, not free from woe.
From Ithaca, of royal birth, I came,
And great Ulysses (ever honour'd name!)
Was once my sire: though now for ever lost
In Stygian gloom he glides a pensive ghost!
Whose fate inquiring, through the world we rove;
The last, the wretched proof of filial love.'

The strangerthen-Nor shall I aught conceal, But the dire secret of my fate reveal. Of my own tribe an Argive wretch I slew; Whose powerful friends the luckless deed pursue With unrelenting rage, and force from home The blood-stain'd exile ever doom'd to roam. But bear, O bear me o'er yon azure flood; Receive the suppliant! spare my destined blood !'

. Stranger! (replied the prince) securely rest Affianced in our faith : henceforth our guest.' Thus affable, Ulysses' godlike heir [spear: Takes from the stranger's hand the glittering He climbs the ship, ascends the stern with haste, And by his side the guest accepted placed. The chief his orders gives: the' obedient band With due observance wait the chief's command: With speed the mast they rear, with speed unbind The spacious sheet, and stretch it to the wind. Minerva calls; the ready gales obey With rapid speed to whirl them o'er the sea. Crunus they pass’d, next Chalcis rollid away, When thickening darkness closed the doubtful The silver Phæa's glittering rills they lost, [day; And skimm'd along by Elis' sacred coast.

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