Page images

Will throw me prostrate. To th' alluring face Disbands the Greeks. Exulting, he forgets
Of my progenitrix a victim fell

Cleora ; active valour in his breast
Th’ Assyrian captain, Holofernes proud;

Extinguishes the embers, cherish'd long So shall thy foe of Athens fall by mine.

By self-tormenting memory, and warmth The meritorious and heroic deed

Of fruitless passion. Present too his chief, Soon will erase the transitory stain.

His friend and kinsman, from a fiery steed 0! if successful, let Bethulia hope

Mardonius rules and stimulates the fight, For thy reviving love." Mardonius starts

Like Boreas, riding on a stormy cloud, In dubious trouble. Whether to chastise

Whence issue darts of lightning, mix'd with hail So fierce a spirit, or its zeal admire,

In rattling show'rs. The enemies dispers'd, He hesitates. Compassion for the sex

Embolden Mindarus to ford the stream, At length prevails, suggesting this reply:

In guidance swift of cavalry expert, “ Fell magnanimity! enormous proof

With unresisted squadrons he careers
Of such intemp'rate passion! I forgive

Along the field. Inviolate the flood
While I reject thy proffer'd crime, although He guards; each hostile quarter he insults.
The deed might fix my glory and success;

Now Gobryas' son, unfetter'd from the bonds And in return for thy prepost'rous love

Of superstitious terrours, joyful sees Will safe replace thee in thy native seat

In Mindarus a new Masistius rise; With gifts to raise from indigence thy house. Nor less the tidings Tiridates sends, But never, never from this hour will view

Who in Cithæron's passes hath despoil'd Thy face again, Bethulia. Eunuchs, hear; The slaughter'd foes, inspire the gen'ral's thoughts, Remove, conceal this woman from my sight." Which teem with arduous enterprise. The camp

“ No, thou jphuman,” thus Bethulia wild: He empties all; beneath whose forming host “ This shall remove for ever from thy sight The meadow sounds. The native Persians face A woman scorn’d, and terminate her pains.” Laconia's station, Greek allies oppose

She said, and struck a poniard through her heart. Th’ Athenian. All the force of Thebes array'd
With shrieks the haram sounds; th' afflicted fair, Envenom'd Leontiades commands.
The eunuchs shudder; when the satrap thus: Greece in her lines sits tranquil; either host
“ Is this another black portent of ill,

Expects the other. By their augurs still
Stern Horomazes? or is this my crime?

Restrain'd, they shun the interdicted ford. No, thou art just. My conscious spirit feels But of the river's plenteous stream depriv'd Thy approbation of Mardonius now.”

By Mindarus, the Grecians fear a dearth But from his breast the dire event expels Of that all-cheering element.' A rill All soft and am'rous cares. His vast command, Flows from a distant spring, Gargaphia nam'd, His long inaction, and the dread of sbame

Their sole resource. Nor dread of other wants Recur. He quits the chamber; to his own Afflicts them less; their convoy is o'erpow'rd Repairing, summons Mindarus, and firm

By Tiridates. Anxious, all exhaust In aspect speaks : “ The morning soon will dawn. A night disturb'd; the bravest grieve the most, Draw down our slingers, archers, and the skill'd Lest through severe necessity they quit In flying darts, to line th’ Asopian brink;

Inglorious their position. Morning shines ;
Thence gall the Grecians, whose diurnal wants When frequent signals from th' external guards,
That food relieves.” Then Mindarus: “O chief, Near and remote, successive rise. To arms
This instant sure intelligence is brought,

All rush. Along the spacious public way
That from the isthmus, to supply their camp, From Megara, obscuring dust ascends.
A convoy, rich in plenty, is descry'd

The sound of trampling hoofs, and laden wheels, Advancing tow'rds Cithæron's neighb'ring pass." With shouts of multitude, is heard. Behold,

Mardonius quick: “No moment shall be lost. Forth from the cloud, a messenger of joy,
Bid Tiridates with five thousand horse

Sicinus breaks, of bold auxiliar bands
Pussess that pass, and, pouring on the plain, Forerunner swift, and unexpected aid
Secure the precious store.This said, he seeks In copious stores, at Megara's wide port
A short repose, and Mindarus withdraws.

New-landed from Thermopylæ. The camp
In arms anon to paragon the Morn,

Admits, and hails in rapturous acclaim
The Morn new-rising, whose vermilion band Eubean standards, Potidæa's ranks,
Draws from the brightning front of Heav'n serene The laurell'd priest and hero, Timon sage,
The humid curtains of tempestuous night,

Th’ennobled heir of Lygdamis, and thee,
Mardonius mounts his courser. On his bank Melissa's brother, great Oileus' son,
The godlike figure soon Asopus views.

Friend of Leonidas, thee dear to all,
O brave, and gen'rous Medon! From their tents
The chiefs assemble, when Sicinus spake:

Pausanius, gen’ral of united Greece,

Accept these ample succours from the hand

Of provident Themistocles. Possess'd
While lamentation for Masistius dead

Of Eta's passes, he the Persian host Depressid the Persians, undisturb’d the Greeks

Now with impenetrable toils besets To all their camp refreshment had deriv'd Like beasts of prey, entangled by the skill From clear Asopus. To th' accustom'd edge Of some experienc'd hunter. Thou receive, Of his abounding food they now resort.

Just Aristides, from Timothea's love, Stones, darts, and arrows, from unnumber'd ranks, A suit of armour new, in Chalcis fram'd, Along the margin opposite dispos’d

Without luxuriant ornament, or gold. By Mindarus, forbid access. Repulse

The shield, an emblem of thy soul, displays

Truth, Equity, and Wisdom, hand in hand. Be hurry'd thus obsequious to control
This for her children, and thy own, consign'd From an imperious Spartan? Tegea first
To her Eubean roof and pious care,

Contested our prerogative. The pride
She bids thee lift and conquer. Thou restore Of Sparta next removes us from the post,
The little exiles in their native homes

Assign'd by public judgment; we comply. To dwell in peace. Her gift, she adds, derives Must we at her contemptuous nod resume Its only value from the wearer's worth.”

The station we forsook ? Defending Greece, In smiles, like Saturn at the tribute pure Ourselves meanwhile deserted and betray'd, Of fruits and fow'rs in singleness of heart

Twice have we lost our city. What is left Paid by religion of the golden age,

Of our abandon'd residence, but dust? Timothca's gift the righteous man receives, Let Greece defend herself. Let us remove Not righteous more than practis'd to endure For the last time our standards, hoist our sails, Heroic labours, soon by matchless deeds

Our floating empire fix on distant shores, To justify the giver. He began:

Our household gods, our progeny, and name, “ Confederated warriors, who withstand

On some new soil establish, sure to find A tyrant's pow'r, unanimous confess

None so ingrate as this." The Athenians thus Your debt to great Themistocles, the lord

Swell with ingenuous ire, as ocean boils, Of all-admir'd Timothea. He and I

Disturb’d by Eurus, and the rude career Evince the fruits of concord. Ancient foes, Of Boreas, threat'ning furious to surmount Through her united, cheerful we sustain

All circumscription. But as oft a cloud, Our public charge. From gen'ral union Greece Distilling gentle moisture as it glides, Expects her safety. Him success hath crown'd Dissolves the rigour of their bojst'rous wings, In arms and counsel; whether on the main Till o'er the main serenity returns; His naval flag he spread, or shook the land So from the mouth of Aristides fall With his triumphant step. O, hero-born

Composing words. Insensibly he soothes Pausanias! glowing with Herculean blood, Their justly-irritated minds, and calms Now under thee let Aristides hope

Their just resentment. Righteousness and truth, To share success, nor tarnish with disgrace

How prevalent your efforts, when apply'd His armour new. Behold, yon river gleams By placid wisdom ! In these strains he spake: With hostile arms. Those standards on the left, Ye men of Athens, at Laconia's call Well-known to Attic eyes, are proudly borne To meet the flow'r of Asia's host in fight By native Medes and Persians. Treach'rous Thebes Do ye repine? A station, which implies Lifts her Cadmëan banner on the right.

Pre-eminence of Attic worth, a task A second time Mardonius forms his host

Of all most glorious, which the martial race To proffer battle. He, perhaps, may ford Of Sparta shuns, and you should covet most, Asopus, which Tisamenus, the learn'd

Ye Marathonian victors? In the sight In divination, hath forbid our steps

Of Greece, who trembles at a Median garb, To pass. Thy former numbers swift arrange. You are preferr'd for valour. Arms the same, New from a march let these auxiliars guard The same embroider'd vestment on their limbs The camp." To him Pausanias thus apart: Effeminate, the same unmanly souls,

“ Athenian, hear: Your citizens are vers'd Debas'd by vices and monarchal rule, In-this barbarian warfare, yet unknown

The Medes retain, as when their vanquish'd ranks Let Spartans and Athenians change Fled beretofore. With weapons often try'd, Their station. You, an adversary try'd

With confidence by victories increas'd, At Marathon, and foil'd, will best oppose.

Not now for liberty and Greece alone To vanquish Grecians we accustom'd long

You march to battle; but to keep unspoil'd Will yon Boeotians and Thessalians face.

Your tropbies won already, and the name, Such is my will.” Concise the Attic sage: Which Marathon and Salamis have rais'd, “ Thou hast commanded what my willing Preserve unstain'd; that men may ever say, thoughts

Not through your leaders, not by fortune there Themselves devis'd, but waited first to hear. You triumph'd, but by fortitude innate, Well canst thou fight, Pausanias. I will strive And lib'ral vigour of Athenian blood.” [lore To imitate thy deeds and thy renown,

He said, and march'd. All follow mute through On whose increase our liberty and laws

Of Aristides, inexpressive love, Depend.” This said, they part. Behind the rear Which melts each bosom. Solemn they proceed, Soon froin the left th’ Athenians, from the right Though lion-like in courage, at bis call The Spartans file. Their stations they exchange, Meek and obedient, as the feecy breed Not by Mardonius unperceiv’d. He moves To wonted notes of Pan's conducting pipe. His Medes and Persians to the post of Thebes, Arriv'd, disbanded, in their sep’rate tents Whence still the Spartan phalanx they confront, Cecropia's tribes exhaust a tedious night, The Thebans still th’ Athenian. This observ'd, Unvisited by sleep. The morning breaks; Pausanias swift to Aristides sends

Instead of joy to gratulate her light Strict charge his old position to resume.

The tone of sadness from dejected hearts, Now indignation high through all the tribes Combining sighs and groans in murmur deep, Of Athens rages. Noble pride, and sense

Alarms the leader. “Aristides, show Of just desert, in exclamation fierce

Thy countenance amongst us,” hasty spake Break from th' exalted populace, who claim The warrior-poet ent’ring: “All thy camp Their soil for parent. “ Gods! from wing to wing Enthusiastic sorrow bath o'erwhelm'd, Must we like servile mercenary bands,

And ev'ry heart unbrac'd. By earliest dawn Like Helots, slaves to Lacedæmon born,

Each left his restless couch. Their first discourse

To us.

Was calm, and fill'd with narratives distinct Calls Aristides. Aemnestus there
Of thy accomplishments, and worth. At length Salutes him : “ Attic friend, a new event
A soldier thus in agitation spake:

In Sparta's quarter is to thee unknown;
Yet, most excellent of gods ! O Jove !

From me accept th' intelligence. The Sun
This is the man we banish'd! In thy sight' Was newly ris'n, when o'er th' Asopian flood
The most excelling man, whose sole offence An eastern herald pass’d. Behind him tow'r'd
Was all-transcending merit, from his home A giant-siz'd barbarian. He approach'd
Our impious votes expell’d, by envy's spite Our camp; before Pausanias brought, he spake:
Seduc'd. We drove him fugitive through Greece; “I am Briareus, of Mardonian guards
Where still he held ungrateful Athens dear, Commander. Through my delegated mouth
For whose redemption from her sloth he rous'd Thus saith the son of Gobryas: I have heard
All Greece to arms.' The soldier clos'd in floods Among the Greeks your prowess vaunted high,
Of anguish. Instant through the concourse ran Ye men of Sparta, that in martial ranks
Contagious grief; as if the fiend Despair,

You either kill, or perish; but I find
From his black chariot, wheeling o'er their heads Fame is a liar. I expected long,
In clouds of darkness, dropp'd his pois'nous dews You would defy me on the field of war.
Of melancholy down to chill the blood,

Have I not seen you shift from wing to wing,
Unnerve the limbs, and fortitude dissolve.

The task imposing on th’ Athenians twice Speed, Aristides. By th' immortal pow'rs! To face the Medes and Persians; while yourselves The feeblest troop of Persians in this hour

Sought with our servants to contend in arms, Might overcome the tame, desponding force Ye brave in name alone! Since you decline Of thy dear country, mistress long confess'd To challenge us, we, prime of eastern blood, Of eloquence and arts, of virtue now

With equal numbers challenge you to prove, Through thy unerring guidance.” Here the sage: That you possess, what rumour hatır proclaim'd,

“Withhold thy praise. good Æschylus-Be swift, The boldest hearts in Greece. Acknowledge else Arrange my fellow citizens in arms

Your boasted valour bury'd in the grave Beneath each ensign of the sev'ral tribes.

With your Leonidas, o'erthrown and slain.' I vill appear a comforter, a friend,

“ Pausanias gave no answer, not through fear, Their public servant.” Aschylus withdraws. But humour torpid and morose, which wrapp'd Soon Aristides, in his armour new,

In clouds of scoru his brow. Consulting none, Timothea's gift, advances from his tent.

With silent pride the giant he dismiss'd. Should from his throne th' Omnipotent descend The challenger, in triumph turning back, In visitation of the human race,

Repass’d the river.” Aemnestus paus'd; While dreading his displeasure; as to earth A second messenger appear’d. Behold, All heads would bend in reverential awe,

In blooming vigour, flush'd by rapid haste, Contrite and conscious of their own misdeeds; Young Menalippus, from the rev'rend seer So look th' Athenians, though in all the pomp Megistias sprung.

“ Athenian chief,” he said, Of Mars array'd, and terrible to half

Bring down thy active, missile-weapon'd troops ; The world in battle. Down their corslets bright On their immediate help Pausanias calls. Tears trickle, tears of penitence and shame, A cloud of hostile cavalry invests To see their injur'd patriot chief assume

Laconia's quarter. Javelins, arrows, darts, In goodness Heav'u's whole semblance, as he moves In sheets discharg'd, have chok'd our last resource, Observant by, and through the weeping ranks Gargaphia's fountain, and our heavy bands From man to man his lib'ral hand extends, Perplex and harass.” Aristides hears, Consoling. No resentment he could show,

And issues swift his orders, while the youth Who none had felt. Ascending now on high,

Continues thus: “Thou knew'st of old my sire, He thus address'd the penitential throng:

Who at Thermopylæ expir'd. The just “ Rate not too high my merit, nor too low Consort together.” Aristides thus : Your own depreciate. Errour is the lot

“ Ingenuous youth, for Greece thy father bled Of man; but lovely in the eye of Heav'n

A spotless victim, but for ever lives Is sense of errour. Better will you fight,

Companion with Leonidas in fame. As better men from these auspicious tears,

By Heav'n protected, thou shalt live to see Which evidence your worth, and please the gods. Their death aton'd; the period is not far. With strength and valour, equity of mind

Come on; my force is ready.” Medon arms Uniting doubles fortitude. Your wives,

With Haliartus, once the shepherd-swain Your progeny and parents, laws and rites, In Eta's pass to Menalippus known, Were ne'er so well secur’d.” The warlike bard Whom both embrace with gratulation kind. Rose next : “ Requested by the sev'ral tribes, All march, but reach not Sparta's distant wing, In their behalf I promise to thy rule

Before the Persians, sated with success, All acquiescence. Bid them fight, retreat, Fild back to join Mardonius. Secret he Maintain, or yield a station; bid them face Was communing with Mirzes, most renown'd Innumerable foes, surmount a foss

Among the Magi. Thus the satrap clos'd : Deep as the sea, or bulwarks high as rocks;

“ Through each occurrence undisguis'd, O sage! Subordination, vigilance, contempt

My circumstantial narrative hath run, Of toil and death, thy dictates shall command." From where I enter'd first Trophonian ground, Th' Oilean hero, Timon, and the seed

Till my descent and vision in the cave. Of Lygdamis, are present, who encamp'd

Speak frankly, Mirzes—nor believe thy words, Among th’ Athenians. They admire the chief, Whatever black presages they contain, Nor less the people. While the term of morn Subjoin'd to all Trophonius hath foretold, Was passing thus, a summons to his tent

Can change my firm resolves, or blunt my sword.”

[ocr errors]

“ Solicitude for Persia to excess

But not alone such parricide to shun Misled thee, satrap, to that graven god,"

Should wake thy efforts. Alexander, no; Rejoins the Magus," where, if ought besides Thou must do more. Our mutual words recall, The craft of Grecian, mercenary priests,

When thou to Athens by Mardonius sent It was the demon Arimanius rul'd.

Didst from thy fruitless embassy rejoin He long hath prompted that Elëan seer,

Me in 'Trachiniæ; whence the barb'rous chief Who blunts thy sword by divination false.

Renew'd his march to lay Cecropian domes What thou dost vision call was enpty dream; In fresh destruction. What a lot is mine?' Imagination heated, and disturb'd,

Thou saidst. •If Xerxes triumph, I become A texture wild and various, intermix'd

A slave in purple. Should the Greeks prevail, With ill-match'd images of things, which last Should that Eubean conqueror, the son Oppress'd thy mind. Thy own distemper fram'd Of Neocles, be sent th’ Athenian scourge'. Th' unreal grot, where Destinies of air

“ I interrupted thus: ‘Awbile, dear lord, In apparition cut thy vital thread;

We must submit to wear the galling mask Their act was thine, the oracle thy own,

Necessity imposes. New events All vague creation of thy erring sleep."

Are daily scatter'd by the restless palm Briareus enters. At his tidings glad,

Of Fortune. Some will prove propitious. Wise, Which ostentation sounded, thus exults

To all benignant, Aristides sery'd Mardonius: “ Sayst thou, Lacedæmon's chief By us in season will befriend our state.' Was mute, when my defiance shook his ear?

“ Behold that season come; let Grecian blood, Hence to the winds, ye auguries and signs ! Which warms thy veins, inspire thy prudent tongue Ye dreams and mysteries of Greece, avaunt! This night th' Athenian hero to apprise Thou, Horomazes, not in marble fanes,

Of all these tidings. Thus secure the Greeks Nor woods oracular, and caves, doth dwell. Against surprisal ; timely thus oblige It is the pow'r of evil there misguides

The first of men, and magnify thy name Insensate mortals, and misguided me.

In Greece for ages.” Here the youthful king: O, Artemisia ! now shall Gobryas' son

“ Though by oppressive Xerxes forc'd to war, Look only, where no mystery can lurk,

Shall I abuse the confidence repos'd On ev'ry manly duty. Nothing dark

By great Mardonius, qualify'd to win The tracks of honour shades.” To chiefs select, Regard at first, which intercourse augments ? Greek and barbarian summon'd, he reveals I will do all by honour's rules allow'd, His fix'd resolves in council. They disperse Will act a neutral part, withdraw my troops, To execute his will. Among the rest

Ev'n at the hazard of my crown and life, Young Alexander, Macedonia's lord,

If such my queen's injunction. Ah ! forbear Speeds to his quarters in the solemn bow'r To frown; what means this flushing of thy cheek? Of Dirce. There Dlardonius had decreed

Must I betray Mardonius to his foes?" A cenotaph of marble, newly-rais'd

She spake abrupt; he started at her look: To his deplord Masistius. There the queen

“ If forc'd obedience to a tyrant binds, Of Macedon, Phæbean Timon's child,

If more, than I, Mardonius holds thy heart, Bright Amarantha, like an ev’ning bird,

Who has thy dearest confidence abus'd,
Whose trill delights a melancholy grove,

Thou wilt discredit my accusing tongue.
Oft with harmonious skill in Delphian strains, Could from this empty monument the shade
Th' ingenuous practice of her maiden days, Of just Masistius rise, his awful voice
Sung of her father, and Masistius good,

Would verify a story, till this hour
That friend, that known protector. She her lute From thee conceal'd. My virgin hand in blood
Was now in cadence with Dircæan rills

Of one barbarian miscreant once I stain'd; Attuning. Vocal melody she breath'd,

Not to pollute my bymeneal state, Which at another season might have won

Nor lay Manlonius gasping at my feet Her lord from sadness. Sighing, he her song

Like Mithridates in the streets of Thebes, Thus interrupts: “ Ah! consort dear, as fair, This bateful camp for Delphi I forsvok, I come from Persia's council ; where the son Fled from a lawless and presumptuous flame, Of Gobryas, urg'd by fear of sudden want

Insulting me, thy queen, who boast descent Through his wide host, nor animated less

From holy Timon. While for his behoof By Spartan silence at the challenge proud Collecting Greeks against their country's cause, His herald bore, determines to reject

Thyself was absent, and Mardonius left The augur's warnings. O'er the stream he means My only guardian; scorning every tie, To lead thembattled nations, and surprise His daring importunity of love Ere dawn, at least assail the camp of Greece Assail'd thy consort's ear. What hope, what trust In ev'ry station. If she quits her lines,

In such barbarians? All their faith expir'd Then will his num'rouş cavalry surround

With good Masistius. Should the Greeks be Her heavy phalanx on the level space.

foil'd, O that my ancestor had never left

How long will Macedon thy realm, how long His Grecian home in Argos, nor acquir'd

Will Amarantha be securely held Emathia's crown! I never then, compellid, Against a satrap, whose ungovern'd will Had borne reluctant arms against a race

May covet both? Of this, O prince, be sure, By friendship link'd, affinity, and blood,

Her part of shame will Amarantha bear, With me and mine.”—“What horrour!” cries the But brief shall be its date. The poniard still, queen,

Which once preserv'd my honour, I possess “ While fear surmises, that my husband's sword To cut my period of dishonour short." May blindly cut my father's vital thread.

The prince impatient, yet attentive, beard

[ocr errors]


Her words; when thus the measure of his wrath Sicinus: “ Worthy of my trust, give ear.
From his full bosom rapidly o'erflow'd.

Within six hours the army will decamp “ O impious breach of hospitable ties!

To choose a friendlier station, so the chiefs O violation base of rights and laws,

In gen’ral council, as Gargaphia chok'd Exacting swift revenge from Heav'n and man, Withholds her wonted succour, have resolv'd. From me the first! Unparallel'd in form,

At Juno's fane, yet undespoil'd, though near O like the sister of thy Delphian god

Platza's ruins, ev'ry band is charg'd Immaculate ! did sacrilegious hands

To reassemble.”......Suddenly appears This pure abode of chastity assail

A centinel, who speaks : “ A stranger, near With profanation ? Less a friend to Greece, The trenches waits thee; us in peaceful words Than foe to false Mardonius, now I go."

Saluting, he importunate requires He said, and order'd forth his swiftest steed. Thy instant presence.” Aristides hastes; By moonlight, twinkling on a shaded track, To whom the stranger: “ Bulwark of this camp, He urg'd his secret way beyond the springs Hear, credit, weigh, the tidings which I bear. Asopian; whence an outlet short and close Mardonins, press-d by fear of threat’ning want, Through mount Cithæron to th' adjacent line At night's fourth watch the fatal stream will pass, Of Aristides led. Meantime the sound

Inflexibly determin’d, though forbid Of steps advancing Amarantha heard:

By each diviner, to assail your host
She heard, and saw Mardonius. He his pace

With all his numbers. I against surprise
Stopp'd short, inclining with obeisance low Am come to warn you; thee alone I trust,
His stately frame. Through terrour and amaze My name revealing. I, O man divine !
To earth she rigid grew, of pow'r to fly

I, who thus hazard both my realm, and life,
Deprivd. He distant spake: “ Imperial dame, Am Alexander, Macedonian friend
That he offended once, Mardonius makes

Of Athens. Kindly on a future day A penitent confession. O! that fault

Remember me.” He said, and spurr'd his steed To Do innate discourtesy impute,

Back through the op'ning of Cithæron's hill. But Eastern manners, not as Grecian pure;

By Aristides instantly detach'd, The ignorance which err'd, by thee is chang'd

Sicinus calls each leader to attend To veneration. From my presence here,

Pausanias. Attica's great captain joins Which ne'er before intruded on this seat

The council full. His tidings he relates, Of thy retirement, do not too severe

Concluding thus with exhortation sage: A new offence interpret; rest assurd,

We, destitute of water, had resolvid A solemn cause impels.” He silent waits,

To change our station. Now without a pause Nor moves; till, gliding silently away,

We must anticipate th' appointed hour Like Dian fair and chaste, but less severe,

Por this retreat, nor ling'ring tempt the force The queen withdrew, and tow'rds a gallant chief, Of squadrons swift to intercept our march. Perhaps by her devices near his fall,

All move your standards. Let Mardonius bring Thus far relented; for the private wrong

A host discourag'd by their augur's voice; The frank atonement raiz'd a gen'rous sigh;

Who are forbid to pass the fatal stream, Against the public enemy of Greece,

but are compellid by famine and despair Unquenchable she burn'd. Now left alone, To inauspicious battle. We to Heav'n Before the cenotaph he kneel'd and spake:

Obedient, Heav'n's assistance shall obtain. “ To morrow, O! to morrow let my helm A situation, safeguard to our flanks Blaze in thy beams auspicious, spirit bright,

Against superior and surrounding horse, Whose name adorns this honorary tomb!

In sight of burnt Platæa, of her fanes The weight of Asia's mighty weal, the weight

Defac'd, and violated gods, I know; Of fifty myriads on thy friend augments

There will assure you conquest." All assent. From hour to hour. Yet purg'd of gloomy thoughts,

At once the diff'rent Grecians, who compose Clear of ambition, save to win the palm

The centre, lift their ensigns. O'er the plain Of victory for Xerxes, I approach

First swiftly tow'rds Platæan Juno's dome Thy suppliant. Thou an intercessor pure

Speeds Adimantus. In array more slow For me, deceiv'd by Grecian seers and gods,

The rest advance. Cleander guards the rear; Before the throne of Horomazes stand,

Brave youth, whom chance malicious will bereave That he may bless my standards, if alone

Of half the laurels to his temples due. To guard so many worshippers, and spread

Th’ Athenians arm delib'rate; in whose train By their success his celebrated name

Illustrious Medon ranks a faithful troop, Through each Hesperian clime. Now grant a sign, His hundred Locrians. Haliartus there, Masistius, ere thy faithful friend depart,

There 'T'imon's few but gen'rous Delphians stand, Fix'd, as he is, to vanquish, or to fall.”

By Aristides all enjoin'd to watch
He ceas'd. Quick rapture dims his cheated eyes. Laconia's host. That sternly-tutor'd race,
He sees in thought a canopy of light,

To passion cold, he knew in action slow,
Descending o'er the tomb. In joy he speeds In consultation torpid. Anxious long
To preparation for the destin'd march.

He waits, and fears the eyelids of the morn,
Too soon unclosing, may too much reveal.

Sicinus, hast’ning to Laconia's camp,

Finds all confus'd, subordination lost

In altercation, wondrous in that breed Among the Greeks their first nocturnal watch Of discipline and manners, nor less strange, Was near its period. From Laconia's wing Than if the laws of Nature in the sky Retum'd, th’ Athenian leader thus bespake Dissolv'd, should turn the Moon and planets loose VOL. XVII.


[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »