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Stopp'd in the tumult, Cleobulus lies
Beneath Oileus' arm, a living prize;
A living prize not long the Trojan stood;
The thirsty falchion drank his reeking blood :
Plung'd in his throat the smoking weapon lies;
Black death, and fate unpitying, seal his eyes.
Amid the ranks, with mutual thirst of fame,
Lycon the brave, and fierce Peneleus, came;
In vain their javelins at each other flew,
Now met in arms, their eager swords they drew.
On the plum'd crest of his Baotian foe,
The daring Lycon aim'd a noble blow;
The sword broke short; but his, Peneleus sped
Fall on the juncture of the neck and head :
The head, divided by a stroke so just,
Hung by the skin: the body sunk to dust.
O'ertaken Neamas by Merion bleeds, [steeds;
Piere'd through the shoulder as he mounts his
Back from the car he tumbles to the ground:
His swimming eyes eternal shades surround.
Next Frymas was doom'd his fate to feel,
His open'd mouth receiv'd the Cretan steel :
Beneath the brain the point a passage tore, [gore :
Crash'd the thin bones, and drown'd the teeth in
His mouth, his eyes, his nostrils, pour a flood;
He sobs his soul out in the gush of blood.
As when the flocks, neglected by the swain,
(Or kids, or lambs) lie scatter'd o'er the plain,
A troop of wolves th' unguarded charge survey,
And read the trembling, unresisting prey :
Thus on the foe the Greeks impetuous came;
Troy fled, unmindful of her former faine.
But still at Hector godlike Ajax aim'd:
Still pointed at his breast his javelin flam'd:
The Trojan chief experienc'd in the field,
O'er his broad shoulders spread the massy shield,
Observ'd the storm of darts the Grecians pour,
And on his buckler caught the ringing shower.
He sees for Greece the scale of conquest rise,
Yet stops, and turns, and saves his lov’d allies.
As when the hand of Jove a tempest forms,
And rolls the cloud to blacken Heaven with storms,
Dark o'er the fields th' ascending vapour flies,
And shades the Sun, and blots the golden skies:
So from the ships, along the dusky plain,
Dire flight and terrour drove the Trojan train.
Ev'n Hector fled; through heaps of disarray
The fiery coursers forc'd their lord away:
While far behind his Trojans fall confus'd;
Wedg'd in the trench, in one vast carnage bruis'd:
Chariots on chariots roll; the clashing spokes
Shock; while the madding steeds break short
In vain they labour up the steepy mound;
Their charioteers lie foaming on the ground.
Fierce on the rear, with shonts, Patroclus flies;
Tomultuous clamour fills the fields and skies;
Thick drifts of dust involve their rapid flight;
Clouds rise on clouds, and Heaven is snatch'd
Th' affrighted steeds, their dying lords cast down,
Scour o'er the fields, and stretch to reach the town.
Loud o'er the rout was heard the victor's cry,
Where the war bleeds, and where the thickest die,
Where horse, and arms, and chariots lie o'er-
And bleeding heroes under axles groan. [thrown,
No stop, no check, the steeds of Peleus knew;
From bank to bank th' immortal coursers flew,
High bounding o'er the fosse : the whirling car [war,
Smokes through the ranks, o'ertakes the flying
And thunders after Hector; Hector flies,
Patroclus shakes his lance; but fate denies.
Not with less noise, with less impetuous force,
The tide of Trojans urge their desperate course,
Than when in Autumn Jove his fury pours,
And Earth is loaden with incessant showers
(When guilty mortals break th' eternal laws,
Or judges, brib'd, betray the righteous cause ;)
From their deep beds he bids the rivers rise,
And opens all the flood-gates of the skies:
Th' impetuous torrents from their hills obey,
Whole fields are drown'd, and mountains swept
Loud roars the deluge till it meets the main;
And trembling man sees all his labours vain.
And now the chief (the foremost troops repell'd)
Back to the ships his destin'd progress held,
Bore down half Troy in his resistless way,
And forc'd the routed ranks to stand the day.
Between the space where silver Simoïs flows,
Where lay the fleets, and where the rampires rose,
All grim in dust and blood, Patroclus stands,
And turns the slaughter on the conquering bands.
First Pronous died beneath his fiery dart,
Which pierc❜d below the shield his valiant heart.
Thestor was next; who saw the chief appear,
And fell the victim of his coward fear;
Shrunk up he sat, with wild and haggard eye,
Nor stood to combat, nor had force to fly :
Patroclus mark'd him as he shunn'd the war,
And with unmanly tremblings shook the car,
And dropp'd the flowing reins. Him 'twixt the
The javelin sticks, and from the chariot draws.
As on a rock that overhangs the main,
An angler, studious of the line and cane,
Some mighty fish draws panting to the shore;
Not with less ease the barbed javelin bore
The gaping dastard: as the spear was shook,
He fell, and life his heartless breast forsook.
Next on Eryalus he flies; a stone,
Large as a rock, was by his fury thrown:
Full on his crown the ponderous fragment flew,
And burst the helm, and cleft the head in two:
Prone to the ground the breathless warrior fell,
And death involv'd him with the shades of Hell.
Then low in dust Epaltes, Echius lie;
Ipheas, Evippus, Polymelus, die;
Amphoterus, and Frymas succeed;
And last Tlepolemus and Pyres bleed.
Where'er he moves, the growing slaughters spread
In heaps on heaps: a monument of dead.
When now Sarpedon his brave friends beheld Groveling in dust, and gasping on the field, With this reproach his flying host he warms: "Oh stain to honour! oh disgrace to arms! Forsake, inglorious, the contended plain; This hand, unaided, shall the war sustain: The task be mine, this hero's strength to try, Who mows whole troops, and makes an army fly." He spake; and, speaking, leaps from off the car; Patroclus lights, and sternly waits the war. As when two vultures on the mountains' height Stoop with resounding pinions to the fight; They cuff, they tear, they raise a screaming cry: The desert echoes, and the rocks reply: The warriors thus, oppos'd in arms, engage With equal clamours, and with equal rage.
Jove view'd the combat: whose event foreseen, He thus bespoke his sister and his queen:
"The hour draws on; the destinies ordain,
My godlike son shall press the Phrygian plain;
Already on the verge of death he stands,
His life is ow'd to fierce Patroclus' hands.
What passions in a parent's breast debate!
Say, shall I snatch him from impending fate,
And send him safe to Lycia, distant far
From all the dangers and the toils of war;
Or to his doom my bravest offspring yield,
And fatten with celestial blood the field?"
Then thus the goddess with the radiant eyes:
"What words are these? O sovereign of the skies!
Short is the date prescrib'd to mortal man;
Shall Jove, for one, extend the narrow span,
Whose bounds were fix'd before his race began?
How many sons of gods, foredoom'd to death,
Before proud Ilion must resign their breath!
Were thine exempt, debate would rise above,
And murmuring powers condemn their partial Jove.
Give the bold chief a glorious fate in fight;
And, when th' ascending soul has wing'd her flight,
Let sleep and death convey, by thy command,
The breathless body to his native land.
His friends and people, to his future praise,
A marble tomb and pyramid shall raise,
And lasting honours to his ashes give ;
His fame ('tis all the dead can have) shall live."
She said; the cloud-compeller, overcome,
Assents to fate, and ratifies the doom.
Then, touch'd with grief, the weeping Heavens
A shower of blood o'er all the fatal field: [distill'd
The god, his eyes averting from the plain,
Laments his son, predestin'd to be slain,
Far from the Lycian shores, bis happy native reign.
Now met in arms, the combatants appear,
Each heav'd the shield, and pois'd the lifted spear:
From strong Patroclus's hand the javelin fled,
And pass'd the groin of vàliant Thrasymed;
The nerves unbrac'd, no more his bulk sustain,
He falls, and falling bites the bloody plain.
Two sounding darts the Lycian leader threw ;
The first aloof with erring fury flew,
The next transpierc'd Achilles' mortal steed,
The generous Pedasus of Theban breed;
Fix'd in the shoulder's joint, he reel'd around,
Roll'd in the bloody dust, and paw'd the slippery
His sudden fall th' entangled harness broke;
Each axle crackled, and the chariot shook:
When bold Automedon, to disengage
The starting coursers, and restrain their rage,
Divides the traces with the sword, and freed
Th' encumber'd chariot from the dying steed:
The rest move on, obedient to the rein;
The car rolls slowly o'er the dusty plain.
The towering chiefs to fiercer fight advance,
And first Sarpedon whirl'd his weighty lance,
Which o'er the warrior's shoulder took its course,
And spent in empty air its dying force.
Not so Patroclus' never-erring dart:
Aim'd at his breast, it pierc'd the mortal part,
Where the strong fibres bind the solid heart;
Then, as the mountain oak, or poplar tall,
Or pine (fit mast for some great admiral)
Nods to the axe, till with a groaning sound
It sinks, and spreads its honours on the ground:
Thus fell the king; and, laid on earth supine,
Before his chariot stretch'd his form divine:
He grasp'd the dust distain'd with streaming gore,
And, pale in death, lay groaning on the shore.
So lies a bull beneath the lion's paws,
While the grim savage grinds with foamy jaws
The trembling limbs, and sucks the smoking
Deep groans, and hollow roars, re-bellow through
Then to the leader of the Lycian band
The dying chief address'd his last command:
"Glaucus, be bold; thy task be first to dare
The glorious dangers of destructive war,
To lead my troops, to combat at their head,
Incite the living, and supply the dead.
Tell them, I charg'd them with my latest breath
Not unreveng'd to bear Sarpedon's death.
What grief, what shame, must Glaucus undergo,
If these spoil'd arms adorn a Grecian foe!
Then as a friend, and as a warrior, fight;
Defend my body, conquer in my right;
That, taught by great examples, all may try
Like thee to vanquish, or like me to dic."
He ceas'd; the fates suppress'd his labouring
And his eyes darken'd with the shades of death.
Th' insulting victor with disdain bestrode
The prostrate prince, and on his bosom trod;
Then drew the weapon from his panting heart,
The reeking fibres clinging to the dart;
From the wide wound gush'd out a stream of blood,
And the soul issued in the purple flood.
His flying steeds the Myrmidons detain,
Unguided now, their mighty master slain.
All-impotent of aid, transfix'd with grief,
Unhappy Glaucus heard the dying chief.
His painful arm, yet useless with the smart
Inflicted late by Teucer's deadly dart,
Supported on his better hand he stay'd;
To Phoebus then, ('twas all he could) he pray'd:
"All-seeing monarch! whether Lycia's coast,
Or sacred Thon, thy bright presence boast,
Powerful alike to ease the wretch's smart ;
Oh hear me! god of every healing art!
Lo! stiff with clotted blood, and pierc'd with pain,
That thrills my arm, and shoots through every vein,
I stand, unable to sustain the spear,
And sigh, at distance from the glorious war.
Low in the dust is great Sarpedon laid,
Nor Jove vouchsaf'd his hapless offspring aid.
But thou, O god of health! thy succour lend,
To guard the reliques of my slaughter'd friend.
For thou, though distant, canst restore my might,
To head my Lycians, and support the fight."
Apollo heard; and, suppliant as he stood,
His heavenly hand restrain'd the flux of blood:
He drew the dolours from the wounded part,
And breath'd a spirit in his rising heart:
Renew'd by art divine, the hero stands,
And owns th' assistance of immortal hands.
First to the fight his native troops he warms,
Then loudly calls on Troy's vindictive arms :
With ample strides he stalks from place to place;.
Now fires Agenor, now Polydamas;
Æneas next, and Hector, he accosts;
Inflaming thus the rage of all their hosts:
"What thoughts, regardless chief! thy breast
Oh too forgetful of the friends of Troy !
Those generous friends, who, from their country
Breathe their brave souls out in another's war. See! where in dust the great Sarpedon lies, In action valiant, and in council wist,
Who guarded right, and kept his people free;
To all his Lycians lost, and lost to thee!
Stretch'd by Patroclus' arm on yonder plains,
Oh save from hostile rage his lov'd remains :
Ah let not Greece his conquer'd trophies boast,
Nor on his corse revenge her heroes lost."
He spoke; each leader in his grief partook,
Troy, at the loss, through all her legions shook.
Transfix'd with deep regret, they view o'crthrown
At once his country's pillar, and their own;
A chief, who led to Troy's beleaguer'd wall
A host of heroes, and outshin'd them all.
Fir'd they rush on; first Hector seeks the foes,
And with superior vengeance greatly glows.
But o'er the dead the fierce Patroclus stands,
And, rousing Ajax, rous'd the listening bands:
"Heroes, be men! be what you were before;
Or weigh the great occasion, and be more.
The chief who taught our lofty walls to yield,
Lies pale in death, extended on the field.
To guard his body, 'Troy in numbers flies;
'Tis half the glory to maintain our prize.
Haste, strip his arms, the slaughter round him
And send the living Lycians to the dead." [spread,
The heroes kindle at his fierce command;
The martial squadrons close on either hand :
Here Troy and Lycia charge with loud alarms,
Thessalia there, and Greece, oppose their arms.
With horrid shouts they circle round the slain;
The clash of armour rings o'er all the plain.
Great Jove, to swell the horrours of the fight,
O'er the fierce armies pours pernicious night;
And round his son confounds the warring hosts,
His fate ennobling with a crowd of ghosts.
Now Greece gives way, and great Epigeus falls;
Agacleus' son, from Budium's lofty walls;
Who, chas'd for murder thence, a suppliant came
To Peleus and the silver-footed dame;
Now sent to Troy, Achilles' arms to aid,
He pays due vengeance to his kinsman's shade.
Soon as his luckless hand had touch'd the dead,
A rock's large fragment thunder'd on his head;
Hart'd by Hectorian force, it cleft in twain
His shatter'd helin, and stretch'd him o'er the slain.
Fierce to the van of fight Patroclus came;
And, like an eagle darting at his game,
Sprung on the Trojan and the Lycian band;
What grief thy heart, what fury urg'd thy hand,
Oh generous Greek when with full vigour thrown
At Sthenelaus flew the weighty stone,
Which sunk him to the dead: when Troy, too near
That arm, drew back; and Hector learn'd to fear.
Far as an able hand a lance can throw,
Gr at the lists, or at the fighting foe;
So far the Trojans from their lines retir'd;
Till Glaucus, turning, all the rest inspir'd.
Ten Bathyclæus fell beneath his rage,
The only hope of Chalcon's trembling age;
Wide o'er the land was stretch'd his large domain,
With stately seats, and riches, blest in vain :
Him, bold with youth, and eager to pursue
The dying Lycians, Glaucus met, and slew;
}iere'd through the bosom with a sudden wound,
He fell, and, falling, made the fields resound.
Th' Achaians sorrow for their hero slain;
With conquering shouts the Trojans shake the
And crowd to spoil the dead: the Grecks oppoɛe;
An iron circle round the carcase grows.
Then brave Laogonus resign'd his breath, Dispatch'd by Merion to the shades of death:
On Ida's holy hill he made abode,
The priest of Jove, and honour'd like his god.
Between the jaw and ear the javelin went:
The soul, exhaling, issued at the vent.
His spear Æneas at the victor threw, Who, stooping forward, from the death withdrew; The lance hiss'd harmless o'er his covering shield, And trembling struck, and rooted in the field; There yet scarce spent, it quivers on the plain, Sent by the great Eneas' arm in vain. "Swift as thou art" (the raging hero cries) "And skill'd in dancing to dispute the prize, My spear, the destin'd passage had it found, Had fix'd thy active vigour to the ground."
"Oh valiant leader of the Dardan host!" (Insited Merion thus retorts the boast)
Strong as you are, 'tis mortal force you trust, An arm as strong may stretch thee in the dust. And if to this my lance thy fate be given, Vain are thy vaunts; success is still from Heaven: This instant sends thee down to Pluto's coast; Mine is the glory, his thy parting ghost."
"O friend," (Menatius' son this answer gave) "With words to combat, ill befits the brave; Not empty boasts the sons of Troy repel, Your swords must plunge them to the shades of Hell. To speak, beseems the council: but to dare In glorious action, is the task of war."
This said, Patroclus to the battle flies;
Great Merion follows, and new shouts arise:
Shields, helmets rattle, as the warriors close;
And thick and heavy sounds the storm of blows.
As through the shrilling vale, or mountain ground,
The labours of the woodman's axe resound;
Blows following blows are heard re-echoing wide,
While crackling forests fall on every side:
Thus echo'd all the fields with loud alarms,
So fell the warriors, and so rung their arms.
Now great Sarpedon on the sandy shore,
His heavenly form defac'd with dust and gore,
And stuck with darts by warring heroes shed,
Lies undistinguish'd from the vulgar dead.
His long-disputed corse the chiefs enclose.
On every side the busy combat grows;
Thick as beneath some shepherd's thatch'd abode
(The pails high-foaming with a milky flood)
The buzzing flies, a persevering train,
Incessant swarm, and chas'd return again,
Jove view'd the combat with a stern survey,
And eyes that flash'd intolerable day.
Fix'd on the field his sight, his breast debates
The vengeance due, and meditates the fates:
Whether to urge their prompt effect, and call
The force of Hector to Patroclus' fall,
This instant see his short-liv'd trophies won,
And stretch'd him breathless on his slaughter'd son;
Or yet, with many a soul's untimely flight,
Augment the fame and horrour of the fight.
To crown Achilles' valiant friend with praise
At length he dooms; and, that bis last of days
Shall set in glory, bids him drive the foe;
Nor unattended see the shades below.
Then Hector's mind he fills with dire dismay,
He mounts his car, and calls his hosts away,
Sunk with Troy's heavy fates, he sees decline
The scales of Jove, and pants with awe divine.
Then, nor before, the hardy Lycians fled, And left their monarch with the common dead: Around, in heaps on heaps, a dreadful wall Of carnage rises, as the heroes fail,
So Jove decreed!) At length the Greeks obtain The prize contested, and despoil the slain. The radiant arins are by Patroclus borne, Patroclus' ships the glorious spoils adorn.
Then thus to Phoebus, in the realms above, Spoke from his throne the cloud-compelling Jove: "Descend, my Phobus, on the Phrygian plain, And from the fight convey Sarpedon slain; Then bathe his body in the crystal flood; With dust dishonour'd, and deform'd with blood: O'er all his limbs celestial odours shed, And with celestial robes adorn the dead. Those rites discharg'd, his sacred corse bequeath To the soft arms of silent Sleep and Death. They to his friends the mournful charge shall bear, His friends a tomb and pyramid shall rear; What honours mortals after death receive, Those unavailing honours we may give !"
Apollo bows, and from mount Ida's height Swift to the field precipitates his flight; Thence from the war the breathless hero bore, Veil'd in a cloud, to silver Simoïs' shore; There bath'd his honourable wounds, and drest His manly members in th' immortal vest; And with perfumes of sweet ambrosial dews, Restores his freshness, and his form renews. Then Sleep and Death, two twins of winged race, Of matchless swiftness, but of silent pace, Receiv'd Sarpedon, at the god's commard, And in a moment reach'd the Lycian land; The corse amidst his weeping friends they laid, Where endless honours wait the sacred shade.
Meanwhile Patroclus pours along the plains, With foaming coursers, and with loosen'd reins. Fierce on the Trojan and the Lycian crew, Ah blind to fate! thy headlong fury flew : Against what fate and powerful Jove ordain, Vain was thy friend's command, thy courage vain; For he, the god, whose counsels uncontrol'd Dismay the mighty, and confound the bold; The god who gives, resumes, and orders all, He urg'd thee on, and urg'd thee on to fall.
Who first, brave hero! by that arm was slain,
Who last, beneath thy vengeance, press'd the plain;
When Heaven itself thy fatal fury led,
And call'd to fill the number of the dead?
Adrestus first; Autonoüis then succeeds;
Echeclus follows; next young Megas bleeds:
Epistor, Melanippus, bite the ground:
The slaughter, Elasus and Mulius crown'd;
Then sunk Pylartes to eternal night;
The rest, dispersing, trust their fates to flight.
Now Troy had stoop'd beneath his matchless
But flaming Phoebus kept the sacred tower.
Thrice at the battlements Patroclus strook,
His blazing ægis thrice Apollo sbook:
He try'd the fourth; when, bursting from the cloud,
A more than mortal voice was heard aloud:
"Patroclus! cease; this heaven-defended wall
Defies thy lance; not fated yet to fall;
Thy friend, thy greater far, it shall withstand:
Troy shall not stoop ev'n to Achilles' hand."
So spoke the god who darts celestial fires;
The Greek obeys him, and with awe retires:
While Hector, checking at the Scran gates
His panting coursers, in his breast debates,
Or in the field his forces to employ,
Or draw the troops within the walls of Troy.
Thus while he thought, beside him Phœbus stood,
In Asius' shape, who reign'd by Sangar's flood;
(Thy brother, Hecuba! from Dymas sprung,
A valiant warrior, haughty, bold and young.)
Thus he accosts him: "What a shameful sight!
Gods! is it Hector that forbears the fight?
Were thine my vigour, this successful spear
Should soon convince thee of so false a fear.
Turn then, ah turn thee to the field of fame,
And in Patroclus' blood efface thy shame.
Perhaps Apollo shall thy arms succeed,
And Heaven ordains him by thy lance to bleed."
So spoke th' inspiring god; then took his flight,
And plung'd amidst the tumult of the fight.
He bids Cebrion drive the rapid car;
The lash resounds, the coursers rush to war:
The god the Grecians' sinking souls deprest,
And pour'd swift spirits through each Trojan breast.
Patroclus lights, impatient for the fight;
A spear his left, a stone employs his right:
With all his nerves he drives it at the foe;
Pointed above, and rough and gross below!
The falling ruin crush'd Cebrion's head,
The lawless offspring of king Priam's bed;
His front, brows, eyes, one undistinguish'd wound:
The bursting balls drop sightless to the ground.
The charioteer, while yet he held the rein,
Struck, from the car, falls headlong on the plain.
To the dark shades the soul unwilling glides;
While the proud victor thus his fall derides:
"Good Heavens! what active feats yon artist
What skilful divers are our Phrygian fos! [shows!
Mark with what ease thy sink into the sand!
Pity, that all their practice is by land!"
Then, rushing forward on his prostrate prize,
To spoil the carcase fierce Patroclus flies:
Swift as a lion, terrible and bold,
That sweeps the fields, depopulates the fold;
Pierc'd through the dauntless heart, then tumbles
And from his fatal courage finds his bane. [slain;
At once bold Hector leaping from his car,
Defends the body, and provokes the war.
Thus for some slaughter'd hind, with equal rage,
Two lordly rulers of the wood engage ;
Stung with fierce hunger, each the prey invades,
And echoing roars rebellow through the shades.
Stern Hector fastens on the warrior's head,
And by the foot Patroclus drags the dead.
While all around, confusion, rage, and fright,
Mix the contending hosts in mortal fight.
So, pent by hills, the wild winds roar aloud
In the deep bosom of some gloomy wood;
Leaves, arms, and trees, aloft in air are blown,
The broad oaks crackle, and the Sylvans groan;
This way and that, the rattling thicket bends,
And the whole forest in one crash descends.
Not with less noise, with less tumultuous rage,
In dreadful shock the mingled hosts engage.
Darts shower'd on darts, now round the carcase
Now flights of arrows bounding from the string :
Stones follow stones; some clatter on the fields,
Some, hard and heavy, shake the sounding shields.
But where the rising whirlwind clouds the plains,
Sunk in soft dust the mighty chief remains,
And, stretch'd in death, forgets the guiding reins!
Now, flaming from the zenith, Sol had driven
His fervid orb through half the vault of Heaven;
While on each host with equal tempest fell
The showering darts, and numbers sunk to Hell
But when his evening wheels o'erhung the main,
Glad conquest rested on the Grecian train.
Then, from ainidst the tumult and alarms,
Toey draw the conquer'd corse, and radiant arms.
Then rash Patroclus with new fury glows,
And, breathing slaughter, pours amid the foes.
Thrice on the press, like Mars himself, he flew,
And thrice three heroes at each onset slew.
There ends thy glory! there the fates untwine
The last, black remnant of so bright a line;
Apollo dreadful stops thy middle way;
Death calls, and Heaven allows no longer day!
For lo! the god, in dusky clouds enshrin'd
Approaching dealt a staggering blow behind.
The weighty shock his neck and shoulders feel;
His eyes flash sparkles, his stunn'd senses reel
la giddy darkness: far to distance flung,
His bounding helmet on the champain rung.
Achilles' plume is stain'd with dust and gore,
That plume, which never stoop'd to earth before;
Long us'd, untouch'd, in fighting fields to shine,
And shade the temples of the man divine.
Jove dooms it now on Hector's helm to nod;
Not long-for fate pursues him, and the god.
His spear in shivers falls: his ample shield
Drops from his arm: his baldrie strows the field:
The corselet his astonish'd breast forsakes:
Loose is each joint: each nerve with horrour shakes.
Stupid he stares, and all-assistless stands :
Such is the force of more than mortal hands!
A Dardan youth there was, well known to fame,
From Panthus sprung, Euphorbus was his name;
Fam'd for the manage of the foaming horse,
Skill'd in the dart, and matchless in the course:
Full twenty knights he tumbled from the car,
While yet he learn'd his rudiments of war.
His venturous spear first drew the hero's gore;
He struck, he wounded, but he durst no more;
Nor, though disarm'd, Patroclus' fury stood;
But swift withdrew the long-protended wood,
And turn'd bim short, and berded in the crowd.
Thus, by an arm divine, and mortal spear,
Wounded at once, Patroclus yields to fear;
Retires for succour to his social train,
And flies the fate, which Heaven decreed, in vain.
Stern Hector, as the bleeding chief he views,
Breaks through the ranks, and his retreat pursues:
The lance arrests him with a mortal wound;
He falls, Earth thunders, and his arms resound.
With him all Greece was sunk; that moment all
Her yet-surviving heroes seem'd to fall.
So, scorch'd with heat, along the desert shore,
The roaming lion meets a bristly boar,
Fast by the spring; they both dispute the flood,
With flaming eyes, and jaws besmear'd with blood;
At length the sovereign savage wins the strife,
And the torn boar resigns his thirst and life.
Patroclus thus, so many chiefs o'erthrown,
So many lives effus'd, expires his own.
As dying now at Hector's feet he lies,
He sternly views him, and triumphing cries:
"Lie there, Patroclus! and with thee, the joy
Thy pride once promis'd, of subverting Troy;
The fancy'd scenes of lion wrapt in flames.
And thy soft pleasures 'serv'd with captive dames!
Cothinking man! I fought, those towers to free,
And guard that beauteous race from lords like
But thou a prey to vultures shalt be made:
Thy own Achilles cannot lend thee aid;
Though much at parting that great chief might say, And much enjoin thee, this important day. 'Return not, my brave friend', (perhaps he said) 'Without the bloody arms of Hector dead.' He spoke, Patroclus march'd, and thus he sped." Supine and wildly gazing on the skies, With faint, expiring breath, the chief replies: "Vain boaster! cease, and know the powers divine:
Jove's and Apollo's is this deed, not thine;
To Heaven is ow'd whate'er your own you call,
And Heaven itself disarm'd me ere my fall.
Had twenty mortals, each thy match in might,
Oppos'd me fairly, they had sunk in fight:
By fate and Phoebus was I first o'erthrown,
Euphorbus next; the third mean part thy own.
But thou, imperious! hear my latest breath;
The gods inspire it, and it sounds thy death.
Insulting man, thou shalt be soon as I;
Black fate hangs o'er thee, and thy hour draws
Ev'n now on life's last verge I see thee stand,
I see thee fall, and by Achilles' hand."
He faints; the soul unwilling wings her way
(The beauteous body left a load of clay)
Flits to the lone, uncomfortable coast;
A naked, wandering, melancholy ghost!
Then Hector, pausing, as his eyes he fed
On the pale carcase, thus address'd the dead:
"From whence this boding speech, the stern
Of death denounc'd, or why denounc'd to me?
Why not as well Achilles' fate be given
To Hector's lance? Who knows the will of Heaven?"
Pensive he said; then pressing, as he lay,
His breathless bosom, tore the lance away;
And upwards cast the corpse: the reeking spear
He shakes, and charges the bold charioteer.
But swift Automedon with loosen'd reins
Rapt in the chariot o'er the distant plains,
Far from his rage th' immortal coursers drove :
Th' immortal coursers were the gift of Jove.
THE SEVENTH BATTLE, FOR THE body of patROCLUS ; THE ACTS OF MENELAUS.
MENELAUS, upon the death of Patroclus, defends his body from the enemy: Euphorbus, who at tempts it, is slain. Hector advancing, Menelaus retires; but soon returns with Ajax, and drives him off. This Glaucus objects to Hector as a flight; who thereupon puts on the armour he had won from Patroclus, and renews the battle. The Greeks give way, till Ajax rallies them: Eneas sustains the Trojans. Æneas and Hector attempt the chariot of Achilles, which is borne off by Automedon. The horses of Achilles de