صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

And ill my soul a master's threats can bear,
With all the fretting of the pedant's war.
If this be banishment-all cares aloof-
To live my own beneath a father's roof-
Still let an idle world condemn or not,
Mine be a truant's name,-an exile's lot.
On" this

this passage, which probably would not have been published if it had referred to critic, the Reverend Doctor Charles Burney, has completely exhausted the subject. When the almost infinite niceties of the Greek language are considered, and it is recollected that the great Sir William Jones, and even Dawes, the most accurate Grecian perhaps whom this island till the present day has ever produced, have not in every instance been able to observe them, the lapses in Milton's Greek composition will possibly be regarded as venial, and not to be admitted in diminution of the fame of his Greek erudition,

u It may be proper to give a literal translation of these lines, that the English reader may form his own judgment on the extent of their testimony. « Now neither am I anxious to revisit reedy Cam, nor does the love of my lately forbidden college give me uneasiness. Fields naked and destitute of soft shades do not please me. How ill-suited to the worshippers of Phæbus is such a place! Neither do I like always to bear the threats of a hard master, and other things which are not to be submitted to by a mind and temper like mine. If it be banishment to return to a father's house, and there, exempt from cares, to possess delightful leisure, I will not refuse even the name and the lot of a fugitive, but exultingly enjoy the condition of an exile.” As it may amuse some of my readers to see the entire elegy, I will transcribe it in its complete state, with a translation very inferior to the merits of the original.

Tandem, chare, tuæ mihi pervenere tabellæ,

Pertulit et voces nuncia charta tuas :
Pertulit occiduâ Devæ Cestrensis ab orâ,

Vergivium prono quà petit amne salum.

any transactions dishonourable to the writer, is rested the whole support of the accusa

Multùm, crede, juvat terras aluisse remotas

Pectus amans nostri, tamque fidele caput;
Quodque mihi lepidum tellus longinqua sodalem

Debet, at unde brevi reddere jussa velit,
Me tenet urbs refuâ quam Thamesis alluit undâ,

Meque nec invitum patria dulcis habet.
Jam nec arundiferum mihi cura revisere Camum,

Nec dudum vetiti me laris angit amor.
Nuda nec arva placent, umbrasque negantia molles :

Quàm malè Phæbicolis convenit ille locus!
Nec duri libet usque minas perferre magistri,

Cæteraque ingenio non subeunda meo.
Si sit hoc exilium patrios adiisse penates,

Et vacuum curis otia grata sequi,
Non ego vel profugi nomen sortemve recuso,

Lætus et exilii conditione fruor.
O, utinam vates nunquam graviora tulisset,

Ille Tomitano flebilis exul agro:
Non tunc Ionio quicquam cessisset Homero,

Neve foret victo laus tibi prima, Maro.
Tempora nam licet hîc placidis dare libera Musis,

Et totum rapiunt me, mea vita, libri.
Excipit hinc fessum sinuosi pompa theatri,

Et vocat ad plausus garrula scena suos.
Seu catus auditur senior, seu prodigus hæres,

Seu procus, aut positâ casside miles adest ;
Sive decennali fecundus lite patronus

Detonat inculto barbara verba foro.
Sæpe vafer gnato succurrit servus amanti,

Et nasum rigidi fallit ubique patris:
Sæpe novos illic virgo mirata calores

Quid sit amor nescit, dum quoque nescit, amat,
Sive cruentatum furiosa Tragedia sceptrum

Quassat, et effusis crinibus ora rotat.
Et dolet, et specto, juvat et spectâsse dolendo,

Interdum et lacrymis dulcis amaror inest :

tion, preferred against our author's college life, from his own to the present times. The

Seu puer infelix indelibata reliquit

Gaudia, et abrupto flendus amore cadit:
Seu ferus è tenebris iterat Styga criminis ultor,

Conscia funereo pectora torre mavens:
Seu mæret Pelopeia domus, seu nobilis ll},

Aut luit incestos aula Creontis avos.
Sed neque sub tecto semper, nec in urbe latenusį

Irrita nec nobis tempora veris eunt.
Nos quoque lucus habet vicina consitus ulmo,

Atque suburbani nobilis umbra loci.
Sæpius hîc, blandas spirantia sidera flammas,

Virgineos videas præteriisse choros.
Ah quoties dignæ stupui miracula formæ,

Quæ possit senium vel reparare Jovis!
Ah quoties vidi superantia lumina gemmas,

Atque faces quotquot volvit uterque polus!
Collaque bis vivi Pelopis quæ brachia vincant,

Quæque fluit puro nectare tincta via!
Et decus eximium frontis, tremulosque capillos,

fallax retia tendit Amor!
Pellacesque genas, ad quas hyacinthina sordet

Purpura, et ipse tui floris. Adoni, rubor!
Cedite, laudatæ toties Heroides olim,

Et quæcunque vagum cepit amica Jovem.
Cedite, Achæmeniæ turrità fronte puellæ,

Et quot Susa colunt, Memnoniamque Ninon,
Vos etiam Danaä fasces submittite nymphæ,

Et vos Hiacæ, Romuleæque nurus:
Nec Pompeianas Tarpëia Musa columnas

Jactet, et Ausoniis plena theatra stolis.
Gloria virginibus debetur prima Britannis ;

Extera, sat tibi sit, fæmina, posse sequi.
Tuque urbs Dardaniis, Londinum, structa colonis,

Turrigerum latè conspicienda caput,

Aurea quæ

author of the “ Modest Confutation," (whom Milton believed to be the son of bishop Hall,)

Tu nimium felix intra tua mænia claudis

Quicquid formosi pendulus orbis habet.
Non tibi tot cælo scintillant astra sereno,

Endymioneæ turba ministra dex,
Quot tibi, conspicuae formâque auroque, puellæ

Per medias radiant turba videnda vias.
Creditur huc geminis venisse invecta columbis

Alma pharetrigero milite cincta Venus;
Huic Cnidòn, et riguas Simoentis flumine valles,

Huic Paphon, et roseam posthabitura Cypron.
Ast ego, dum pueri sinit indulgentia cæci,

Mænia quàm subitò linquere fausta paro;
Et vitare procul malefidæ infamia Circes

Atria, divini molyos usus ope.
Stat quoque juncosas Cami remeare paludes,

Atque iterum raucæ murmur adire scholæ.
Interea fidi parvum cape munus amici,

Paucaque in alternos verba coacta modos.


Ar length, my friend, the missive paper came,
Warm with your words, and hallow'd by your name:
Came from those fields which Cestrian Deva laves,
As prone

he hurries to lërne's waves.
I joy to find my friendship thus confest,
Though regions part us, foster'd in your breast:
I joy, believe me, that a distant shore
Owes me a comrade and must soon restore,
Pleased with my native city, still I dwell
Where Thames's restless waters sink and swell.
Extinct my love of mansions, late denied,
No wish now leads me to Cam's reedy side:
Where genial shade the naked fields refuse;
(Ah most unfriendly to the courted Muse!)

confesses that he had no certain notice of his opponent, further than what he had gathered

And ill my soul a master's threats can bear,
With all the fretting of the pedant's war.
If this be banishment,-all cares aloof,
To live my own beneath a father's roof,
Still,- let an idle world condemn or not,
Mine be a truant's name, an exile's lot.
O had no weightier ills oppress'd the doom
Of the sad bard in Tomi's wintry gloom;
Great Homer's self had seen a rival lays.
And Maro had resign'd his victor bay:
For here the Muses lead my hours along,
And all my day is study or is song.
Then tired, I hasten where the scene commands
The crowded theatre's applauding hands:
Whether it's fictions show, with mimic truth,
A cautious parent, or a spendthrift youth;
A lover, or a peaceful son of war;
Or, bawling the base jargon of the bar,
Pompous, and pregnant with a ten-years' cause,
The prating, puzzled pleader of the laws.
There oft a servant aids the doating boy
To elude his sire, and gain his promised joy:
There a new feeling oft the maiden proves;
Knows not 'tis love, but while she knows not, loves.
Or there high tragedy, in wild despair,
Lifts her red hand and rends her streaming hair.
I look and weep :- I weep-yet look again,
And snatch froni sorrow a delicious pain:
Whether the hapless youth, from love and life
Torn by strong fate, resign his virgin wife:
Or, hot from hell, the dire avenger stand,
Exerting o'er the wretch her Stygian brand:
Or heaven's dread wrath o'ertake, with tardy pace,
The crimes of Atreus in his bleeding race;
Or Creon's court atone the incestuous sire's embrace.


« السابقةمتابعة »