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And famed for prowess in a well-fought field; Advancing Melanippus met the dart
The victor leaps upon his prostrate prize ;
And hears the gathering multitude resound, Through Dolops' shoulder urged his forceful dart, Timely he flics the yet untasted food, Which held its passage through the panting heart, And gains the friendly shelter of the wood. And issued at his breast. With thundering sound So fears the youth; all Troy with shouts pursue, The warrior falls, extended on the ground. 641 While stones and darts in mingled tempests flew; In rush the conquering Greeks to spoil the slain : But enter'd in the Grecian ranks, he turns 710 But Hector's voice excites his kindred train ; IIis manly breast, and with new fury burns. The hero most, from Hicetaon sprung,
Now on the fleet the tides of Trojans drove, Fierce Melanippus, gallant, brave, and young; Fierce to fulfil the stern decrees of Jove : He (ere to Troy the Grecians cross’d the main) The sire of gods, confirming Thetis prayer, Fed his large oxen on Percote's plain ;
The Grecian ardour quench'd in deep despair ; But when, oppress’d, his country claim'd his care, But lifts to glory Troy's prevailing bands, Return'd to Ilion, and excell'd in war;
Swells all their hearts and strengthens all their hands. For this, in Priam's court he held his place, 650 On Ida's top he waits with longing eyes, Beloved no less than Priam's royal race.
To view the navy blazing lo the skies; Him Hector singled, as his troops he led, Then, nor till then, the scale of war shall turn, 30 And thus inflamed him, pointing to the dead: The Trojans fly, and conquer'd Ilion burn. Lo, Melanippus ! lo where Dolops lies;
These fates revolved in his almighty mind, And is it thus our royal kinsman dies ?
He raises Hector to the work design'd, O'ermatch'd he falls; to two at once a prey, Bids him with more than mortal fury glow, And lo! they bear the bloody arms away! And drives him, like a lightning, on the foe. Come on-a distant war no longer wage,
So Mars, when human crimes for vengeance call, But hand to hand thy country's foes engage : Shakes his huge javelin, and whole armies fall. Till Greece at once, and all her glory end, 660 Not with more rage a conflagration rolls, Or Ilion from her towery height descend,
Wraps the vast mountains, and involves the poles. Heaved from the lowest stone; and bury all He foams with wrath ; beneath his gloomy brow 739 In one sad sepulchre, one common fall.
Like fiery meteors his red eye-balls glow: Hector (this said) rush'd forward on the foes : The radiant helmet on his temples burns, With equal ardour Melanippus glows.
Waves when he nods, and lightens as he turns : Then Ajax thus-Oh Greeks ! respect your fame, For Jove his splendour round the chief had thrown, Respect yourselves, and learn an honest shame: And cast the blaze of both the hosts on one. Let mutual reverence mutual warmth inspire, Unhappy glories ! for his fate was near, And catch from breast to breast the noble fire. Due to stern Pallas, and Pelides' spear: On valour's side the odds of combat lie, 670 Yet Jove deferr'd the death he was to pay, The brave live glorious, or lamented die ;
And gave what Fate allowed, the honours of a day! The wretch that trembles in the field of fame, Now all on fire for fame, his breast, his eyes 740 Meets death, and worse than death, eternal shame. Burn at each foe, and single every prize,
His generous sense he not in vain imparts ; Still at the closest ranks, the thickest fight, It sunk, and rooted in the Grecian hearts ; He points his ardour and exerts his might. They join, they throng, they thicken at his call, The Grecian phalanx, moveless as a tower, And flank the navy with a brazen wall;
On all sides batter'd, yet resists his power: Shields touching shields, in order blaze above, So some tall rock o'erhangs the hoary main, And stop the Trojans though impell’d by Jove. By winds assail'd, by billows beat in vain, The fiery Spartan first, with loud applause, 680 Unmoved it hears, above, the tempest blow, Warms the bold son of Nestor in his cause. And sees the watery mountains break below. Is there (he said) in arms a youth like you, Girt in surrounding flames, he seems to fall, So strong to fight, so active to pursue ?
Like fire from Jove, and bursts upon them all: Why stand you distant, nor attempt a deed ? Bursts as a wave that from the clouds impends, Lift thy bold lance, and make some Trojan bleed. And swell'd with tempests on the ship descenda;
He said ; and backward to the lines retired ; White are the decks with foam; the winds alond Forth rush d the youth, with martial fury fired, Howl o'er the masts, and sing through every shroud Beyond the foremost ranks; his lance he threw, Pale, trembling, tired, the sailors freeze with fears: And round the black battalions cast his view. And instant death on every wave appears. The troops of Troy recede with sudden fear, 690 So pale the Greeks the eyes of Ilector meet, While the swift javelin hiss'd along in air. The chief so thunders, and so shakes the fleet.
As when a lion rushing from his den, 760 And now to this, and now to that he flies : Amidst the plain of some wide-water'd fen, Admiring numbers follow with their eyes. (Where numerous oxen, as at ease they feed, From ship to ship thus Ajax swiftly flew, 830 At large expatiate o'er the ranker mead,)
No less the wonder of the warring crew, Leaps on the herds before the herdsman's eyes : As furious Hector thunder'd threats aloud, The trembling herdsman far to distance flies: And rush'd enraged before the Trojan crowd: Some lordly bull (the rest dispersed and fled) Then swift invades the ships, whose beaky prores He singles out; arrests, and lays him dead. Lay rank'd contiguous on the bending shores : Thus from the rage of Jove-like Hector flew So the strong eagle from his airy height, All Greece in heaps; but one he seized, and slew : Who marks the swans' or cranes' embodied flight, Mycenian Periphes, a mighty name, - 770 Stoops down impetuous, while they light for food, In wisdom great, in arms well known to fame ; And, stooping, darkens with his wings the flood. The minister of stern Eurystheus' ire,
Jove leads him on with his almighty hand,
840 Against Alcides, Copreus was his sire :
And breathes fierce spirits in his following band. The son redeem'd the honours of the race, The warring nations meet, the battle roars, A son as generous as the sire was base;
Thick beats the combat on the sounding prores. O'er all his country's youth conspicuous far Thou wouldst have thought, so furious was their fire, In every virtue, or of peace or war:
No force could tame them, and no toil could tire; But doom'd to Hector's stronger force to yield ! As if new vigour from new fights they won, Against the margin of his ample shield
And the long battle was but then begun.
Secure of death, confiding in despair; .
And each contends, as his were all the war. Chased from the foremost line, the Grecian train 'Twas thou, bold Hector! whose resistless hand Now man the next, receding toward the main : First seized a ship on that contested strand; Wedged in one body at the tents they stand, The same which dead Protesilaus bore, Walrd round with sterns, a gloomy desperate band. The first that touch'd the unhappy Trojan shore: Now manly shame forbids the inglorious flight; 790 For this in arms the warring nations stood, Now fear itself confines them to the fight :
And bathed their generous breasts with mutual blood. Man courage breathes in man; but Nestor most No room to poise the lance or bend the bow, 860 (The sage preserver of the Grecian host)
But hand to hand, and man to man they grow : Exhorts, adjures, to guard these utmost shores ; Wounded they wound; and seek each other's hearts And by their parents, by themselves, implores. With falchions, axes, swords, and shorten'd darts.
O friends! be men : your generous breasts inflame The falehions ring, shields rattle, axes sound, With equal honour, and with mutual shame! Swords flash in air, or glitter on the ground: Think of your hopes, your fortunes; all the care With streaming blood the slippery shores are dyed, Your wives, your infants, and your parents share : And slaughter'd heroes swell the dreadful tide. Think of each living father's reverend head : 800 Still raging Hector with his ample hand Think of each ancestor with glory dead;
Grasps the high stern, and gives his loud command : Absent, by me they speak, by me they sue;
Haste, bring the flames ! the toil of ten long years They ask their safety, and their fame from you: Is finish'd! and the day desired appears! 871 The gods their fates on this one action lay, This happy day with acclamations greet, And all are lost, if you desert the day.
Bright with destruction of yon hostile fleet.
of reverend dotards, check'd our glory long :
He spoke--the warriors, at his fierce command, 88C
Stepp'd back, and doubted or to live or die. A ponderous mace, with studs of iron crown'd, Yet where the oars are placed, he stands to wait Full twenty cubits long, he swings around; What chief approaching dares attempt his fate : Vor fights like others fix'd to certain stands, E'en to the last his naval charge defends, But looks a moving tower above the bands : Now shakes his spear, now lifts, and now protends; High on the deck, with vast gigantic stride, 820 E'en yet the Greeks with piercing shouts inspires, The godlike hero stalks from side to side.
Amidst attacks, and deaths, and darts, and fires : So when a horseman from the watery mead
O friends! O heroes! names for ever dear,
What aids expect you in this utmost strait ?
No aids, no bulwarks, your retreat attend; Whate'er the cause, reveal thy secret care,
And speak those sorrows which a friend would share. This spot is all you have, to lose or keep;
A sigh, that instant, from his bosom broke, There stand the Trojans, and here rolls the deep Another follow'd, and Patroclus spoke: "Tis hostile ground you tread; your native lands 900 Let Greece at length with pity touch thy breast, Far, far from hence : your fates are in your hands. Thyself a Greek; and, once, of Greeks the best!
Raging he spoke ; nor farther wastes his breath, Lo! every chief that might her fate prevent, But turns his javelin to the work of death.
Lies pierced with wounds, and bleeding in his tent. Whate'er bold Trojan arm'd his daring hands, Eurypylus, Tydides, Atreus' son, Against the sable ships with flaming brands; And wise Ulysses, at the navy groan, So well the chief his naval weapon sped,
More for their country's wounds, than for their own
May never rage like thine my soul enslave,
What friend, what man, from thee shall hope redress ?
No--men unborn, and ages yet behind,
Shall curse that fierce, that unforgiving mind.
O man unpitying! if of man thy race;
But sure thou spring'st not from a soft embrace, The sixth Battle; the Acts and Death of Patroclus.
Nor ever amorous hero caused thy birth, Patroclus (in pursuance of the request of Nestor in the Nor ever tender goddess brought thee forth. eleventh book) entreats Achilles to suffer him to go to Some rugged rock's hard entrails gave thee form, 55 the assistance of the Greeks with Achilles' troops and And raging seas produced thee in a storm, armour. He agrees to it, but at the same time charges him to content himself with rescuing the fleet, with. A soul well-soiting that tempestuous kind, out further pursuit of the enemy. The armour, horses, So rough thy manners, so untamed thy mind. soldiers, and officers of Achilles are described. Achil. If some dire oracle thy breast alarm, les offers a libation for the success of his friend, after If aught from Jove, or Thetis, stop thy arm, which Patroclus leads the Myrmidons to battle. The Some beam of comfort yet on Greece may shine, Trojans, at the sight of Patroclus in Achilles's armour, If I but lead the Myrmidonian line : taking him for that hero, are cast into the utmost con. Clad in thy dreadful arms if I appear, sternation: he beats them off from the vessels. Hector Proud Troy shall tremble, and desert the war: himself flies. Sarpedon is killed, though Jupiter was Without thy person Greece shall win the day,
60 averse to his fate. Several oth battle are described; in the heat of which, Patroclus, And thy mere image chace her foes away. neglecting the orders of Achilles, pursues the foe to Press’d by fresh forces, her o'erlabour'd train the walls of Troy; where Apollo repulses and disarms Shall quit the ships, and Greece respire again. him, Euphorbus wounds him, and Hector kills him; Thus, blind to Fate! with supplicating breath, which concludes the book.
Thou begg'st his arms, and in his arms thy death,
Unfortunately good! a boding sigh
Thy friend return'd; and with it this reply:
Patroclus! thy Achilles knows no fears; So warr'd both armies on the ensanguined shore, Nor words from Jove, nor oracles he hears; While the black vessels smoked with human gore. Nor aught a mother's caution can suggest ; Meantime Patroclus to Achilles flies;
The tyrant's pride lies rooted in my breast. The streaming tears fall copious from his eyes ; My wrongs, my wrongs, my constant thought engage, Not faster trickling to the plains below,
Those, my sole oracles, inspire my rage. From the tall rock the sable waters flow.
I made him tyrant: gave him power to wrong Divine Pelides, with compassion moved,
E'en me: I felt it: and shall feel it long.
Patroclus, say, what grief thy bosom bears, Due to the toils of many a well-fought day;
Lead forth my martial Myrmidons to fight,
At the last edge of yon deserted land! Doom'a in their ships to sink by fire and sword, Behold all Ilion on their ships descends ; And pay the forfeit of their haughty lord ? How the cloud blackens, how the storm impends!
It was not thus, when at my sight amazed, He cased his limbs in brass; and first around
Achilles' helmet nodded o'er his head :
Adorn'd in all his terrible array,
170 Commands your slaughter, or proclaims your death. He flash'd around intolerable day. Yet now, Patroclus, issue to the plain;
Alone, untouch'd, Pelides' javelin stands, Now save the ships, the rising fires restrain, Not to be poised but by Pelides' hands; And give the Greeks to visit Greece again. From Pelion's shady brow the plant entire, But heed my words, and mark a friend's command, Old Chiron rent, and shaped it for his sire; Who trusts his fame and honours in thy hand, Whose son's great arm alone the weapon wields, And from thy deeds expects the Achaian host 110 The death of heroes and the dread of fields. Shall render back the beauteous maid he lost. Then brave Automedon (an honour'd name, Rage uncontroll'd through all the hostile crew, The second to his lord in love and fame, But touch not Hector; Heetor is my due.
In peace his friend, and partner of the war) 180 Though Jove in thunder should command the war, The winged coursers harness'd to the car; Be just, consult my glory, and forbear.
Xanthus and Balius, of immortal breed, The fleet once saved, desist from farther chase, Sprung from the wind, and like the wind in speed; Nor lead to Ilion's walls the Grecian race; Whom the wing'd Harpy, swift Podargè, bore, Some adverse god thy rashness may destroy ; By Zephyr pregnant on the breezy shore: Some god, like Phæbus, ever kind to Troy. Swift Pedasus was added to their side Let Greece redeem'd from this destructive strait, 120 (Once great Aëtion's, now Achilles' pride,) No her own work; and leave the rest to Fate. Who, like in strength, in swiftness, and in grace, Oh! would to all the immortal powers above, A mortal courser, match'd the immortal race. Apollo, Pallas, and almighty Jove,
Achilles speeds from tent to tent, and warms 190 That not one Trojan might be left alive,
His hardy Myrmidons to blood and arms. And not a Greek of all the race survive;
All breathing death, around their chief they stand, Might only we the vast destruction shun,
A grim, terrific, formidable band : And only we destroy the accursed town.
Grim as voracious wolves, that seek the springs, Such conference held the chiefs: while on the When scalding thirst their burning bowels wrings; strand,
When some tall stag, fresh slaughter'd in the wood, Great Jove with conquest crown'd the Trojan band. Has drench'd their wild insatiate throats with blood, Ajax no more the sounding storm sustain'd, 130 To the black fount they rush, a hideous throng, So thick the darts an iron tempest rain'd: With paunch distended, and with lolling tongue; On his tired arm the weighty buckler hung; Fire fills their eye, their black jaws belch the gore, His hollow helm with falling javelins rung; And, gorged with slaughter, still they thirst for His breath, in quick, short pantings, comes and goes ;
201 And painful sweat from all his members flows : Like furious rush'd the Myrmidonian crew, Spent and o'erpower’d, he barely breathes at most; Such their dread strength, and such their dreadful Yet scarce an army stirs him from his post :
view. Dangers on dangers all around him grow,
High in the midst the great Achilles stands, And toil to toil, and woe succeeds to woe. Directs their order, and the war commands.
Say, Muses, throned above the starry frame, 140 He, loved of Jove, had launch'd for Ilion's shores
Stern Hector waved his sword; and standing near Five chosen leaders the fierce bands obey,
Himself supreme in valour as in sway.
First march'd Menestheus, of celestial birth, 210 That the broad falchion lopp'd its brazen head: Derived from thee, whose waters wash the earth, His pointless spear the warrior shakes in vain; Divine Spirchius! Jove-descending flood ! The brazen head falls sounding on the plain. A mortal mother mixing with a god. Great Ajax saw, and own'd the hand divine, Such was Menestheus, but miscall'd by fame Confessing Jove, and trembling at the sign; The son of Borus, that espoused the dame. Warnd he retreats
. Then swift on all sides pour 150 Eudorus next; whom Polymele the gay,
Divine Achilles view'd the rising flames, To her high chamber from Diana's quire, 220
Her secret offspring to her sire she bare;. Lo, to the dangers of the fighting field!
Pisander follow'd; matchless in his art 230 Though still determined to my ships confined;
Confirm his heart, and string his arm to war: 300 The fourth by Phenix' grave command was graced; Pressed by his single force let Hector see Laërces' valiant offspring led the last.
His fame in arms not owing all to me. Soon as Achilles with superior care
But when the fleets are saved from foes and fire, Had call'd the chiefs, and order'd all the war, Let him with conquest and renown retire ; This stern remembrance to his troops he gave: Preserve his arms, preserve his social train, Ye far-famed Myrmidons, ye fierce and brave ! And safe return him to these eyes again! Think with what threats you dared the Trojan Great Jove consents to half the chief's request, throng,
240 But heaven's eternal doom denies the rest : Think what reproach these ears endured so long. To free the fleet was granted to his prayer ; *Stern son of Peleus,' (thus ye used to say, His safe return the winds dispersed in air. While, restless, raging in your ships you lay,) Back to his tent the stern Achilles flies, 310
Oh nursed with gall, unknowing how to yield; And waits the combat with impatient eyes. Whose rage defrauds us of so famed a field, Meanwhile the troops, beneath Patroclus' care, If that dire fury must for ever burn,
Invade the Trojans, and commence the war. What make we here? Return; ye chiefs, return! As wasps, provoked by children in their play, Such were your words-Now warriors, grieve no Pour from their mansions by the broad highway more;
In swarms the guiltless traveller engage, Lo there the Trojans ! bathe your swords-in gore! Whet all their stings, and call forth all their rage ; This day shall give you all your soul demands; 250 All rise in arms, and with a general cry Glut all you hearts ! and weary all your hands! Assert their waxen domes and buzzing progeny:
Thus while he roused the fire in every breast, Thus from the tents the fervent legion swarms, 320 Close, and more close, the listening cohorts press'd ; So loud their clamour, and so keen their arms. Ranks wedged in ranks; of arms a steely ring Their rising rage Patroclus' breath inspires, Still grows, and spreads, and thickens round the king. Who thus inflames them with heroic fires : As when a circling wall the builder forms,
Oh warriors, partners of Achilles' praise ! Of strength defensive against winds and storms, Be mindful of your deeds in ancient days: Compacted stones the thickening work compose, Your godlike master let your acts proclaim, And round him wide the rising structure grows : And add new glories to his mighty name. So helm to helm, and crest to crest they throng, 260 Think your Achilles sees you fight: be brave, Shield urged on shield, and man drove man along; And humble the proud monarch whom you save Thick, undistinguish'd plumes, together join'd, Joyful they heard, and kindling as he spoke, 333 Float in one sea, and wave before the wind. Flew to the fleet, involved in fire and smoke.
Far o'er the rest, in glittering pomp appear From shore to shore the doubling shouts resound There bold Automedon, Patroclus here;
The hollow ships return a deeper sound. Brothers in arms, with equal fury fired;
The war stood still, and all around them gazed, Two friends, two bodies with one soul inspired. When great Achilles' shining armour blazed:
But mindful of the gods, Achilles went Troy saw, and thought the dread Achilles nigh; To the rich coffer in his shady tent ;
At once they see, they tremble, and they fly. There lay on heaps his various garments roll'd, 270 Then first thy spear, divine Patroclus ! flex, And costly furs, and carpets stiff with gold, Where the war raged, and where the tumult grew: (The presents of the silver-footed dame.)
Close to the stern of that famed ship, which bore 340 From thence he took a bowl of antique frame, Unbless'd Protesilaus to Ilion's shore, Which never man had stain'd with ruddy wine, The great Peonian, bold Pyræchmes, stood Nor raised in offerings to the powers divine, (Who led his bands from Axius' winding flood;) But Peleus' son, and Peleus' son to none
His shoulder-blade receives the fatal wound: Had raised in offerings, but to Jove alone. The groaning warrior pants upon the ground. This tinged with sulphur, sacred first to flame, His troops, that see their country's glory slain, He purged; and wash'd it in the running stream: Fly divers, scatter'd o'er the distant plain. Then cleansed his hands; and fixing for a space 280 Patroclus' arm forbids the spreading fires, His eyes on heaven, his feet upon the place And from the half-burn'd ship proud Troy retires : Of sacrifice, the purple draught he pour'd Clear'd from the smoke the joyful navy lies; Forth in the midst; and thus the god implored: In heaps on heaps the foe tumultuous flies;
Oh thou Supreme !' high throned all height above ! Triumphant Greece her rescued decks ascends, Oh great Pelasgic, Dodonæån Jove!
And loud acclaim the starry region rends. Who'midst surrounding frosts, and vapours chill, So when thick clouds inwrap the mountain's head, Presidest on bleak Dodona's vocal hill,
O'er heaven's expanse like one black ceiling spread: (Whose groves, the Selli, race austere ! surround, Sudden, the Thunderer, with a flashing ray, Their feet unwash'd, their slumbers on the ground; Bursts through the darkness, and lets down the day Who hear, from rustling oaks, thy dark decrees ; 290 The hills shine out, the rocks in prospect rise, And catch the fates, low-whisper'd in the breeze :) And streams, and vales, and forests, strike the eyes : Hear, as of old! Thou gavest, at Thetis' prayer, The smiling scene wide opens to the sight, * Glory to me, and to the Greeks despair.
And all the unmeasured æther flames with light.