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The chiefs you nam'd, already at his call,
Prepare to meet us near the navy wall;
Assembling there, between the trench and gates,
Near the night-guards, our chosen council waits "
"Then none" (said Nestor) "shall his rule with-
For great examples justify command." [stand,
With that the venerable warrior rose;
The shining greaves his manly legs enclose;
His purple mantle golden buckles join'd,
Warm with the softest wool, and doubly lin’d.
Then rushing from his tent, he snatch'd in haste
His steely lance, that lighten'd as he past.
The camp he travers'd through the sleeping crowd,
Stopp'd at Ulysses' tent, and call'd aloud.
Ulysses, sudden as the voice was sent,
Awakes, starts up, and issues from his tent.
"What new distress, what sudden cause of fright,
Thus leads you wandering in the silent night;"
"O prudent chief!" (the Pylian sage reply'd)
"Wise as thou art, be now thy wisdom try'd;
Whatever means of safety can be sought,
Whatever counsels can inspire our thought,
Whatever methods, or to fly or fight;
All, all depend on this important night!"
He heard, retnrn'd, and took his painted shield!
Then join'd the chiefs, and follow'd through the
Without his tent, bold Diomed they found, [field.
All sheath'd in arms, his brave companions round:
Each sunk in sleep, extended on the field,
His head reclining on his bossy shield.
A wood of spears stood by, that, fix'd upright,
Shot from their flashing points a quivering light.
A bull's black hide compos'd the hero's bed;
A splendid carpet roll'd beneath his head.
Then, with his foot, old Nestor gently shakes
The slumbering chief, and in these words awakes:
"Rise, son of Tydeus! to the brave and strong
Rest seems inglorious, and the night too long.
But sleep'st thou now? when from yon hill the foe
Hangs o'er the fleet, and shades our walls below!"
At this, soft slumber from his eye-lids fled;
The warrior saw the hoary chief, and said,
"Wondrous old man! whose soul no respite knows,
Though years and honours bid thee seek repose,
Let younger Greeks our sleeping warriors wake;
Ill fits thy age these toils to undertake."
My friend" (he answer'd)" generous is thy care, These toils, my subjects and my sons might bear, Their loyal thoughts and pious loves conspire To ease a sovereign, and relieve a sire. But now the last despair surrounds our host; No hour must pass, no moment must be lost; Each single Greek, in this conclusive strife, Stands on the sharpest edge of death or life: Yet, if my years thy kind regard engage, Employ thy youth as I employ my age: Succeed to these my cares, and rouse the rest; He serves me most, who serves his country best." This said, the hero o'er his shoulders flung A lion's spoils, that to his ancles hung; Then seiz'd his ponderous lance, and strode along. Meges the bold, with Ajax fam'd for speed, The warrior rous'd, and to th' entrenchments led.
And now the chiefs approach the nightly guard; A wakeful squadron, each in arms prepar'd; Th' unweary'd watch their listening leaders keep, And, couching close, repel invading sleep. So faithful dogs their fleecy charge maintain, With toil protected from the prowling train,
When the gaunt lioness, with hunger bold,
Springs from the mountains tow'rd the guarded fold:
Through breaking woods her rustling course they
Loud, and more loud, the clamours strike their ear
Of bounds and men; they start, they gaze around,
Watch every side, and turn to every sound.
Thus watch'd the Grecians, cautious of surprize,
Each voice, each motion, drew their ears and eyes;
Each step of passing feet increas'd th' affright;
And hostile Troy was ever full in sight.
Nestor with joy the wakeful band survey'd,
And thus accosted through the gloomy shade :
"Tis well, my sons! your nightly cares employ
Else must our host become the scorn of Troy.
Watch thus, and Greece shall live"-The hero said;
Then o'er the trench the following chieftains led.
and godlike Merion march'd behind
(For these the princes to their council join'd);
The trenches past, th' assembled kings around
In silent state the consistory crown'd.
A place there was yet undefil'd with gore,
The spot where Hector stopp'd his rage before;
When night descending, from his vengeful hand
Repriev'd the relics of the Grecian band:
(The plain beside with mangled corpse was spread,
And all his progress mark'd by heaps of dead.)
There sat the mournful kings: when Neleus' sou
The council opening, in these words begun :
"Is there" (said he) "a chief so greatly brave,
His life to hazard, and his country save?
Lives there a man, who singly dares to go
To yonder camp, or seize some straggling foe?
Or, favour'd by the night, approach so near,
Their speech, their councils, and designs, to hear?
If to besiege our navies they prepare,
Or Troy once more must be the seat of war?
This could he learn, and to our peers recite,
And pass unharm'd the dangers of the night;
What fame were his through all succeeding days,
While Phoebus shines, or men have tongues to
What gifts his grateful country would bestow?
What must not Greece to her deliverer owe?
A sable ewe each leader should provide,
With each a sable lambkin by her side;
At every rite his share should be increas'd,
And his the foremost honours of the feast."
Fear held them mute: alone, untaught to fear,
Tydides spoke-"The man you seek, is here,
Through yon black camps to bend ny dangerous
Some god within commands, and I obey.
But let some other chosen warrior join,
To raise my hopes, and second my design.
By mutual confidence, and mutual aid,
Great deeds are done, and great discoveries made;
The wise new prudence from the wise acquire,
And one brave hero fans another's fire." -
Contending leaders at the word arose : Each generous breast with emulation glows: So brave a task each Ajax strove to share, Bold Merion strove, and Nestor's valiant heir; The Spartan wish'd the second place to gain, And great Ulysses wish'd, nor wish'd in vain. Then thus the king of men the contest ends : "Thou first of warriors, and thou best of friends, Undaunted Diomed! what chief to join In this great enterprise, is only thine. Just be thy choice, without affection made; To birth, or office, no respect be paid;
Let worth determine here. "The monarch spake, And inly trembled for his brother's sake.
Then thus (the godlike Diomed rejoin'd):
"My choice declares the impulse of my mind,
How can I doubt, while great Ulysses stands
To lend his counsels, and assist our hands?
A chief, whose safety is Minerva's care;
So fam'd, so dreadful, in the works of war:
Blest in his conduct, I no aid require;
Wisdom like his might pass through flames of fire."
"It fits thee not, before these chiefs of fame,"
(Reply'd the sage)" to praise me, or to blame :
Praise from a friend, or censure from a foe,
Are lost on hearers that our merits know.
But let us haste-Night rolls the hours away,
The reddening orient shows the coming day,
The stars shine fainter on the ethereal plains,
And of night's empire but a third remains."
Thus having spoke, with generous ardour prest,
In arms terrific their huge limbs they drest.
A two-edg'd falchion Thrasymed the brave,
And ample buckler, to Tydides gave:
Then in a leathern helm he cas'd his head,
Short of its crest, and with no plume o'erspread :
(Such as by youths unus'd to arms are worn;
No spoils enrich it, and no studs adorn.)
Next him Ulysses took a shining sword,
A bow and quiver, with bright arrows stor'd:
A well-prov'd casque, with leather braces bound,
(Thy gift, Meriones) his temples crown'd;
Soft wool within, without, in order spread,
A boar's white teeth grinn'd horrid o'er his head.
This from Amyntor, rich Ormenus' son,
Autolochus by fraudful rapine won,
And gave Amphidamas; from him the prize
Molus receiv'd, the pledge of social ties;
The helmet next by Merion was possess'd,
And now Ulysses' thoughtful temples press'd.
Thus sheath'd in arms, the council they forsake,
And dark through paths oblique their progress
Just then, in sign she favour'd their intent,
A long-wing'd heron great Minerva sent:
This, though surrounding shades obscur'd their
By the shrill clang, and whistling wings, they As from the right she soar'd, Ulysses pray'd, Hail'd the glad omen, and address'd the maid:
"O daughter of that god, whose arm can wield Th' avenging bolt, and shake the dreadful shield ! O thou! for ever present in my way, Who all my motions, all my toils survey! Safe may we pass beneath the gloomy shade, Sefe by thy succour to our ships convey'd; And let some deed this signal night adorn, To claim the tears of Trojans yet unborn."
Then godlike Diomed preferr'd his prayer:
"Daughter of Jove, unconquer'd Pallas! hear.
Great queen of arms, whose favour Tydeus won;
As thou defend'st the sire, defend the son.
When on Æsopus' banks the banded powers
Of Greece he left, and sought the Theban towers,
Peace was his charge; receiv'd with peaceful show,
He went a legate, but return'd a foe:
Then help'd by thee, and cover'd by thy shield,
He fought with numbers, and made numbers yield.
So now be present, oh celestial maid!
So still continue to the race thine aid!
A youthful steer shall fall beneath the stroke,
Latam'd, unconscious of the galling yoke,
With ample forehead, and with spreading horns, Whose taper tops refulgent gold adorns."
The heroes pray'd; and Pallas from the skies Accords their vow, succeeds their enterprise. Now, like two lions panting for the prey, With dreadful thoughts they trace the dreary way, Through the black horrours of th' ensanguin'd [of slain. Through dust, through blood, o'er arms and hills Nor less bold Hector, and the sons of Troy, On high designs the wakeful hours employ; Th' assembled peers their lofty chief enclos'd; Who thus the counsels of his breast propos'd: "What glorious man for high attempts prepar'd, Dares greatly venture, for a rich reward, Of yonder fleet a bold discovery make, [take? What watch they keep, and what resolves they If now subdued they meditate their flight, And spent with toil neglect the watch of night? His be the chariot that shall please him most, Of all the plunder of the vanquish'd host; His the fair steeds that all the rest excel, And his the glory to have serv'd so well."
A youth there was among the tribes of Troy, Dolon his name, Eumedes' only boy : (Five girls beside the reverend herald told) Rich was the son in brass, and rich in gold; Not blest by Nature with the charms of face, But swift of foot, and matchless in the race. "Hector!" (he said) "my courage bids me meet This high achievement, and explore the fleet: But first exalt thy sceptre to the skies, And swear to grant me the demanded prize; Th' immortal coursers, and the glittering car, That bear Pelides through the ranks of war. Encourag'd thus, no idle scout I go, Fulfil thy wish, their whole intention know, Ev'n to the royal tent pursue my way, And all their counsels, all their aims betray." The chief then heav'd the golden sceptre high, Attesting thus the monarch of the sky: "Be witness thou! immortal Lord of all! Whose thunder shakes the dark aërial hall: By none but Dolon shall this prize be borne, And him alone th' immortal steeds adorn."
Thus Hector swore: the gods were call'd in
But the rash youth prepares to scour the plain?
Across his back the beaded bow he flung,
A wolf's grey hide around his shoulders hung,
A ferret's downy fur his helmuct lin'd,
And in his hand a pointed javelin shin'd,
Then (never to return) he sought the shore,
And trod the path his feet must tread no more,
Scarce had he pass'd the steeds and Trojan throng
(Still bending forward as he cours'd along,)
When, on the hollow way, th' approaching tread
Ulysses mark'd, and thus to Diomed:
"O friend! I hear some step of hostile fect,
Moving this way, or hastening to the fleet;
Some spy perhaps to lurk beside the main ;
Or nightly pillager that strips the slain.
Yet let him pass, and win a little space;
Then rush behind him, and prevent his pace.
But if too swift of foot he flies before,
Confine his course along the fleet and shore,
Betwixt the camp and him our spears employ,
And intercept his hop'd return to Troy."
With that they stepp'd aside, and stoop'd their (As Dolon pass'd) behind a heap of dead: [head
Along the path the spy unwary flew;
Soft, at just distance, both the chiefs pursue.
So distant they, and such the space between,
As when two teams of mules divide the green
(To whom the hind like shares of land allows),
When now new furrows part th' approaching
Now Dolon listening heard them as they past; Hector (he thought) had sent, and check'd his haste,
Till scarce at distance of a javelin's throw,
No voice succeeding, he perceiv'd the foe.
As when two skilful hounds the leveret wind;
Or chase through woods obscure the trembling
Now lost, now seen, they intercept his way,[hind;
And from the herd still turn the flying prey:
So fast, and with such fears, the Trojan flew;
So close, so constant, the bold Greeks pursue.
Now almost on the fleet the dastard falls,
And mingles with the guards that watch the walls;
When brave Tydides stopp'd; a generous thought
(Inspir'd by Pallas) in his bosom wrought,
Lest on the foe some forward Greek advance,
And snatch the glory from his lifted lance.
Then thus aloud: "Whoe'er thou art remain ;
This javelin else shall fix thee to the plain."
He said, and high in air the weapon cast,
Which wilful err'd, and o'er his shoulder past;
Then fix'd in earth. Against the trembling wood
The wretch stood propp'd, and quiver'd as he
A sudden palsy seiz'd his turning head;
His loose teeth chatter'd, and his colour fled :
The panting warriors seize him as he stands,
And with unmanly tears his life demands.
"O spare my youth, and for the breath I owe, Large gifts of price my father shall bestow. Vast heaps of brass shall in your ships be told,* And steel well-temper'd, and refulgent gold." To whom Ulysses made this wise reply ; "Whoe'er thou art, be bold, nor fear to die. What moves thee, say, when sleep has clos'd the sight,
To roam the silent fields in dead of night?
Cam'st thou the secrets of our camp to find,
By Hector prompted, or thy daring mind?
Or art some wretch by hopes of plunder led
Through heaps of carnage to despoil the dead?"
Then thus pale Dolon with a fearful look,
(Still as he spoke, his limbs with horrour shook).
"Hither I came, by Hector's words deceiv'd;
Much did he promise, rashly I believ'd :
No less a bribe than great Achilles' car,
And those swift steeds that sweep the ranks of war,
Urg'd me, unwilling, this attempt to make;
To learn what counsels, what resolves you take :
If, now subdued, you fix your hopes on flight,
And tir'd with toils, neglect the watch of night ?"
"Bold was thy aim, and glorious was the prize!"
(Ulysses, with a scornful smile, replies)
"Far other rulers those proud steeds demand,
And scorn the guidance of a vulgar hand;
Ev'n great Achilles scarce their rage can tame,
Achilles, sprung from an immortal dame.
But say, be faithful, and the truth recite!
Where lies encamp'd the Trojan chief to night?
Where stand his coursers? in what quarter sleep
Their other princes? tell what watch they keep:
Say, since their conquest, what their counsels are;
Or here to combat, from their city far,
Or back to Ilion's wall transfer the war."
The Pæons, dreadful with their bended bows,
The Carians, Caucons, the Pelasgian host,
And Leleges, encamp along the coast.
Not distant far, lie higher on the land
The Lycian, Mysian, and Mæonian band,
And Phrygia's horse, by Thymbras' ancient wall;
The Thracians utmost, and apart from all.
These Troy but lately to her succour won,
Led on by Rhesus, great Eioneus' son:
I saw his coursers in proud triumph go,
Swift as the wind, and white as winter snow:
Rich silver plates his shining car infold:
His solid arms, refulgent, flame with gold;
No mortal shouiders suit the glorious load,
Celestial panoply, to grace a god!
Let me, unhappy, to your fleet be borne,
Or leave me here, a captive's fate to mourn,
In cruel chains; till your return reveal,
The truth or falsehood of the news I tell."
To this Tydides, with a gloomy frown: "Think not to live, though all the truth be shown:
Shall we dismiss thee, in some future strife
To risk more bravely thy now forfeit life?
Or that again our camps thou may'st explore ;
No-once a traitor thou betray'st no more."
Sternly he spoke, and as the wretch prepar'd
With humble blandishment to stroke his beard,
Like lightening swift the wrathful falchion flew,
Divides the neck, and cuts the nerves in two;
One instant snatch'd his trembling soul to Hell,
The head, yet speaking, mutter'd as it fell.
The furry helmet from his brow they tear,
The wolf's grey hide, th' unbended bow and
These great Ulysses lifting to the skies,
To favouring Pallas dedicates the prize :
"Great queen of arms! receive this hostile spoil,
And let the Thracian steeds reward our toil:
Thee first of all the heavenly host we praise;
O speed our labours, and direct our ways!"
This said, the spoils with dropping gore defac'd,
High on a spreading tamarisk he plac'd;
Then heap'd with reeds and gather'd boughs the
To guide their footsteps to the place again.
Through the still night they cross the devious fields
Slippery with blood, o'er arms and heaps of shields,
Arriving where the Thracian squadrons lay,
And eas'd in sleep the labours of the day.
Rang'd in three lines they view the prostrate band:
The horses yok'd beside each warrior stand;
Amidst lay Rhesus, stretch'd in sleep profound,
And the white steeds behind his chariot bound.
The welcome sight Ulysses first descries,
And points to Diomed the tempting prize.
"The man, the coursers, and the car behold!
Describ'd by Dolon, with the arms of gold.
Now, brave Tydides! now thy courage try,
Approach the chariot, and the steeds untie,"
Or if thy soul aspire to fiercer deeds,
Vize thou the slaughter, while I seize the steeds.
Pallas (this said) her hero's bosom warms,
Brath'd in his heart, and strung his nervous arms,
Where'er he pass'd, a purple stream pursued
His thirsty falchion, fat with hostile blood;
Bath'd all his footsteps, dy'd the fields with gore,
And a low groan remurmur'd through the shore.
So the grim lion, from his nightly den,
O'erlaps the fences, and invades the pen;
On sheep or goats, resistless in his way,
He fails, and foaming rends the guardless prey.
Nor stopp'd the fury of his vengeful hand,
Till twelve lay breathless of the Thracian band.
Ulysses following, as his partner slew,
Back by the foot each slaughter'd warrior drew;
The milk-white coursers studious to convey
Safe to the ships, he wisely clear'd the way;
Lest the fierce steeds, not yet to battles bred,
Should start, and tremble at the heaps of dead.
Now twelve dispatch'd, the monarch last they
Tydides' falchion fix'd him to the ground.
Just then a deathful dream Minerva sent;
A warlike form appear'd before his tent,
Whose visionary steel his bosom tore:
So dream'd the monarch, and awak'd no more.
Ulysses now the snowy steeds detains,
And leads them, fasten'd by the silver reins ;
These, with his bow unbent, he lash'd along;
(The scourge forgot, on Rhesus' chariot hung.)
Then gave his friend the signal to retire;
But him, new dangers, new achievements fire:
Doubtful he stood, or with his reeking blade
To send more heroes to th' infernal shade,
Drag off the car where Rhesus' armour lay,
Or heave with manly force, and lift away.
While unresolv'd the son of Tydeus stands,
Pallas appears, and thus her chief commands:
**Enough, my son; from farther slaughter
Regard thy safety, and depart in peace;
Haste to the ships, the gotten spoils enjoy,
Nor tempt too far the hostile gods of Troy."
The voice divine confess'd the martial maid;
In haste he mounted, and her word obey'd;
The coursers fly before Ulysses' bow,
Swift as the wind, and white as winter-snow.
Not unobserv'd they pass'd: the god of light
Had watch'd his Troy, and mark'd Minerva's
Saw Tydeus' son with heavenly succour blest,
And vengeful anger fill'd his sacred breast.
Swift to the Trojan camp descends the power,
And wakes Hippocoon in the morning hour
(On Rhesus' side accustom'd to attend,
A faithful kinsman, and instructive friend.)
He rose, and saw the field deform'd with blood,
An empty space where late the coursers stood,
The yet-warm Thracians panting on the coast;
For each he wept, but for his Rhesus most:
Now while on Rhesus' name he calls in vain,
The gathering tumult spreads o'er all the plain;
On heaps the Trojans rush, with wild affright,
And wondering view the slaughters of the night.
Meanwhile the chiefs arriving at the shade
Where late the spoils of Hector's spy were laid,
Ulysses stopp'd; to him Tydides bore
The trophy, dropping yet with Dolon's gore:
Then mounts again; again their nimble feet
The coursers ply, and thunder tow'rds the fleet.
Old Nestor first perceiv'd th' approaching sound, Bespeaking thus the Grecian peers around: "Methinks the noise of trampling steeds I hear, Thickening this way, and gathering on my ear; Perhaps some horses of the Trojan breed (So may, ye gods! my pious hopes succeed). The great Tydides and Ulysses bear,
Return'd triumphant with this prize of war.
Yet much I fear (ah may that fear be vain!)
The chiefs out-number'd by the Trojan train;
Perhaps ev'n now pursued, they seek the shore;
Or, oh! perhaps those heroes are no more."
Scarce had he spoke, when lo! the chiefs
And spring to earth; the Greeks dismiss their fear: With words of friendship and extended hands
They greet the kings: and Nestor first demands:
Say thou, whose praises all our host proclaim,
Thou living glory of the Grecian name!
Say, whence these coursers? by what chance
The spoil of foes, or present of a god?
Not those fair steeds so radiant and so gay,
That draw the burning chariot of the day.
Old as I am, to age I scorn to yield,
And daily mingle in the martial field;
But sure till now no coursers struck my sight
Like these conspicuons through the ranks of fight.
Some god, I deem, conferr'd the glorious prize,
Blest as ye are, and favourites of the skies;
The care of him who bids the thunder roar,
And her', whose fury bathes the world with gore."
"Father! not so" (sage Ithacus rejoin'd)
"The gifts of Heaven are of a nobler kind.
Of Thracian lineage are the steeds ye view,
Whose hostile king the brave Tydides slew;
Sleeping he died, with all his guards around,
And twelve beside lay gasping on the ground.
These other spoils from conquer'd Dolon came,
A wretch, whose swiftness was his only fame,
By Hector sent our forces to explore,
He now lies headless on the sandy shore."
Then o'er the trench the bounding coursers flew;
The joyful Greeks with loud acclaim pursue.
Straight to Tydides' high pavillion borne,
The matchless steeds his ample stall adorn:
The neighing coursers their new fellows greet,
And the full racks are heap'd with generous wheat.
But Dolon's armour, to his ships convey'd,
High on the painted stern Ulysses laid,
A trophy destin'd to the blue-ey'd maid.
Now from nocturnal sweat, and sanguine stain, They cleanse their bodies in the neighbouring main:
Then in the polish'd bath, refresh'd from toil,
Their joints they supple with dissolving oil,
In due repast indulge the genial hour,
And first to Pallas the libations pour:
They sit, rejoicing in her aid divine,
And the crown'd goblet foams with floods of wine.
Ev'n Ajax and Achilles heard the sound, Whose ships, remote, the guarded navy bound, Thence the black Fury through the Grecian throng With horrour sounds the loud Orthian song: The navy shakes, and at the dire alarms Each bosom boils, each warrior starts to arms, No more they sigh, inglorious to return, But breathe revenge, and for the combat burn. The king of men his hardy host inspires With loud command, with great example fires; Himself first rose, himself before the rest His mighty limbs in radiant armour drest. And first he cas'd his manly legs around In shining greaves, with silver buckles bound; The beaming cuirass next adorn'd his breast, The same which once king Cinyras possest: (The fame of Greece and her assembled host THE THIRD BATTLE, AND THE ACTS OF AGAMEMNON. Had reach'd that monarch on the Cyprian coast; 'Twas then, the friendship of the chief to gain, AGAMEMNON, having armed himself, leads the Gre- This glorious gift he sent, nor sent in vain.) cians to battle: Hector prepares the Trojans to Ten rows of azure steel the work infold, receive them; while Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva, Twice ten of tin, and twelve of ductile gold; give the signals of war. Agamemnon bears all Three glittering dragons to the gorget rise, before him; and Hector is commanded by Ju- Whose imitated scales, against the skies piter (who sends Iris for that purpose) to decline Reflected various light, and arching bow'd, the engagement, till the king shall be wounded Like colour'd rainbows o'er a showery cloud and retire from the field. He then makes a (Jove's wondrous bow, of three celestial dyes, great slaughter of the enemy; Ulysses and Plac'd as a sign to man amid the skies.) Diomed put a stop to him for a time; but the A radiant baldric, o'er his shoulder ty'd, latter being wounded by Paris, is obliged to Sustain'd the sword that glitter'd at his side: desert his companion, who is encompassed by Gold was the hilt, a silver sheath encas'd the Trojans, wounded, and in the utmost danger, The shining blade, and golden hangers grac’d. tili Menelaus and Ajax rescue him. Hector His buckler's mighty orb was next display'd, comes against Ajax; but that hero alone op- That round the warrior cast a dreadful shade; poses multitudes, and rallies the Greeks. In Ten zones of brass its ample brim surround, the mean time Machaon, in the other wing of And twice ten bosses the bright convex crown'd; the army, is pierced with an arrow by Paris, Tremendous Gorgon frown'd upon its field, and carried from the fight in Nestor's chariot. And circling terrours fill'd th' expressive shield; Achilles (who overlooked the action from his Within its concave hung a silver thong, ship) sent Patroclus to inquire which of the On which a mimic serpent creeps along; Greeks was wounded in that manner? Nestor His azure length in easy waves extends, entertains him in his tent with an account of the Till in three heads th' embroider'd monster ends, accidents of the day, and a long recital of some Last o'er his brows his fourfold helm he plac'd, former wars which he remembered, tending to With nodding horse hair formidably grac'd! put Patroclus upon persuading Achilles to fight And in his hands two steely javelins wields, for his countrymen, or at least permit him to do That blaze to Heaven, and lighten all the fields, it, clad in Achilles' armour. Patroclus in his re- That instant Juno and the martial maid turn meets Eurypylus also wounded, and assists In happy thunders promis'd Greece their aid; him in that distress. High o'er the chief they clash'd their arms in air; And, leaning from the clouds, expect the war.
This book opens with the eight and twentieth day of the poem; and the same day, with its various actions and adventures, is extended through the twelfth, thirteenth, fourteenth, fifteenth, sixteenth, seventeenth, and part of the eighteenth books. The scene lies in the field, near the monument of Ilus.
THE saffron Morn, with early blushes spread,
Now rose refulgent from Tithonius' bed;
With new-born day to gladden mortal sight,
And gild the courts of Heaven with sacred light:
When baleful Eris, sent by Jove's command,
The torch of discord blazing in her hand,
Through the red skies her bloody sign extends,
And, wrapt in tempests, o'er the fleet descends.
High on Ulysses' bark, her horrid stand
Close to the limits of the trench and mound,
The fiery coursers to their chariots bound
The squires restrain'd: the foot with those who
The lighter arms, rush forward to the field. [wield
To second these, in close array combin'd,
The squadrons spread their sable wings behind.
Now shouts and tumults wake the tardy Sun,
As with the light the warrior's toils begun.
Ev'n Jove, whose thunder spoke his wrath, distill'd
Red drops of blood o'er all the fatal field;
The woes of men unwilling to survey,
And all the slaughters that must stain the day.
Near Ilus' tomb, in order rang'd around,
The Trojan lines possess'd the rising ground:
There wise Polydamas and Hector stood,
Eneas, honour'd as a guardian god;
Bold Polybus, Agenor the divine,
The brother warriors of Antenor's line;
With youthful Acamas, whose beauteous face
She took, and thunder'd through the seas and land. And fair proportion match'd th' etherial race ;