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Resign to Jove his empire of the skies,
And people heaven with Roman deities.

The time will come, when a diviner flame
Shall warm my breast to sing of Cæsar's fame:
Meanwhile permit, that my preluding Muse
In Theban wars an humbler theme


chuse: Of furious hate surviving death, she sings, A fatal throne to two contending Kings, And funeral flames, that parting wide in air Express the discord of the fouls they bear : Of towns dispeopled, and the wandering ghosts' 55 Of Kings unbury'd in the wasted coasts; When Dirce's fountain blush'd with Grecian blood, And Thetis, near Ismenos' swelling flood, With dread beheld the rolling furges sweep, In heaps, his flaughter'd sons into the deep. 60 What Hero, Clio! wilt thou first relate ? of Tydeus, or the Prophet's fate?


The rage

Undarum terraeque potens, et lidera dones.

45 Tempus erit, cum Pierio tua fortior oestro, Facta canam : nunc tendo chelyn. fatis arma referre Aonia, et geminis fceptrum exitiale tyrannis, Nec furiis poft fata modum, flammasque rebelles Seditione rogi, tumulisque carentia regum Funera, et egestas alternis mortibus urbes;

55 Caerula cum rubuit Lernaeo fanguine Dirce, Et Thetis arentes assuetum stringere ripas, Horruit ingenti venientem Ilmenon acervo.


Or how, with hills of llain on every fide,
Hippomedon repellid the hostile tide?
Or how the youth, with every grace adorn’d,
Untimely fell, to be for ever mourn'd?
Then to fierce Capaneus thy verse extend,
And sing with horror his prodigious end.

Now wretched Oedipus, depriv'd of sight,
Led a long death in everlasting night;
But, while he dwells where not a chearful ray
Can pierce the darkness, and abhors the day;
The clear reflecting mind presents his fin
In frightful views, and makes it day within ;
Returning thoughts in endless circles roll,

And thousand furies haunt his guilty soul,
The wretch then lifted to th' unpitying skies
Those empty orbs from whence he tore his eyes,



Quem prius heroum Clio dabis ? immodicum irae Tydea ? laurigeri fubitos an vatis hiatus ? Urget et hoftilem propellens caedibus amnem Turbidus Hippomedon, plorandaque bella protervi 64 Arcados, atque alio Capaneus horrore canendus.

Impia jam merita scrutatus lumina dextra Merserat aeterna damnatum nocte pudorem Oedipodes, longaque animam fub morte tenebat.

70 Illum indulgentem tenebris, imaeque receffu Sedis, inaspectos coelo, radiisque penates Servantem, tamen affiduis circumvolat alis Saeva dies animi, scelerumque in pectore Dirae. 75 Tunc vacuos orbes, crudum ac miserabile vitae

Whose wounds, yet fresh, with bloody hands he ftrook, While from his breast these dreadful accents broke : 80

Ye Gods! that o'er the gloomy regions reign, Where guilty spirits feel eternal pain ; Thou, fable Styx! whose livid streams are rollid Through dreary coasts, which I, though blind, behold: Tisiphone, that oft haft heard my prayer,

85 Aflis, if Oedipus deserve thy care ! If you receiv’d me from Jocasta's womb, And nurs'd the hope of mischiefs yet to come : If, leaving Polybus, I took my way To Cyrrha's temple, on that fatal day,

90 When by the fon the trembling father dy'd, Where the three roads the Phocian fields divide : If I the Sphynx's riddles durst explain, Taught by thyself to win the promis'd reign;


Supplicium, ostentat coelo, manibusque cruentis
Pulsat inane folum, fævaque ita voce precatur:

Dî fontes animas, auguftaque Tartara poenis
Qui regitis, tuque umbrifero Styx livida fundo,
Quam video, multumque mihi consueta vocari
Annue Tisiphone, perversaque vota fecunda, 85
Si bene quid merui, fi me de matre cadentem
Fovisti gremio, et trajectum vulnere plantas
Firmâsti; fi ftagna petî Cyrrhaea bicorni

90 Interfusa jugo, poffem cum degere falso Contentus Polybo, trifidaeque in Phocidos arce Longaevum implicui regem, fecuique trementis Ora senis, dum quaero patrem ; fi Sphingos iniquae

If wretched I, by baleful Furies led,

With monstrous mixture stain'd my mother's bed,
For hell and thee begot an impious brood.
And with full lust those horrid joys renew’d;
Then felf-condemn'd, to shades of endless night,
Forc'd from these orbs the bleeding balls of sight; 100
O hear, and aid the vengeance I require,
If worthy thee, and what thou might'st inspire !
My sons their old unhappy fire despise,
Spoil'd of his kingdom, and depriv’d of eyes ;
Guideless I wander, unregarded mourn,

While these exalt their sceptres o'er my urn;
These fons, ye Gods! who, with flagitious pride,
Insult my darkness, and my groans deride.


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Callidus ambages, te praemonstrante, resolvi ;
Si dulces furias, et lamentabile matris
Connubium gavisus inî; noctemque nefandam
Saepe tuli, natosque tibi (fcis ipsa) paravi;
Mox avidus poenae digitis cedentibus ultro
Incubui, miseraque oculos in matre reliqui :
Exaudi, fi digna precor, quaeque ipfa furenti
Subjiceres : orbum vifu regnisque parentem
Non regere, aut dictis moerentem flectere adorti
Quos genui, quocunque toro: quin ecce fuperbi
(Proh dolor) et nostro jamdudum funere reges,
Insultant tenebris, gemitusque odere paternos.
Hisne etiam funestus ego? et videt ista deorum

Art thou a Father, unregarding Jove!
And sleeps thy thunder in the realms above ? 110
Thou Fury, then, some lasting curse entail,
Which o'er their childrens children shall prevail :
Place on their heads that crown distain’d with gore,
Which these dire hands from my Nain father tore;
Go, and a parent's heavy curses bear;

Break all the bonds of nature, and prepare
Their kindred souls to mutual hate and war.
Give them to dare, what I might wish to see
Blind as I am, some glorious villany!
Soon shalt thou find, if thou but arm their hands,
Their ready guilt preventing thy commands :
Couldst thou some great, proportion'd mischief frame,
They'd prove the father from whose loins they came.

The Fury heard, while on Cocytus' brink Her snakes unty'd, sulphureous waters drink; 125



I 20


Ignavus genitor? tu saltem debita vindex
Huc ades, et totos in



nepotes, Indue quod madidum tabo diadema cruentis Unguibus arripui, votisque instincta paternis I media in fratres, generis consortia ferro

115 Disliliant: da Tartarei regina barathri Quod cupiam vidisse nefas, nec tarda sequetur Mens juvenum ; modo digna veni, mea pignora nofces,

Talia jactanti crudelis Diva severos Advertit vultus; inamoenum forte sedebat Cocyton juxta, resolutaque vertice crines,

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