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Musæus : of Hero and
of Hero and Leander. *
MOST GENERALLY INGENIOUS, AND OUR ONLY LEARNED ARCHITECT,
MY EXCEEDING GOOD FRIEND,
INIGO JONES, ESQUIRE,
SURVEYOR OF HIS MAJESTY'S WORKS.
ANCIENT Poesy, and ancient Architecture, requiring to their excellence a like creating and proportionable rapture, and being alike overtopt by the monstrous Babels of our modern barbarism, their unjust obscurity letting no glance of their truth and dignity appear but to passing few, to passing few is their least appearance to be presented. Yourself then being a chief of that few by whom both are apprehended, and their beams worthily measured and valued, this little light of the one I could not but object, and publish to your choice apprehension ; especially for your most ingenuous love to all works in which the ancient Greek Souls have appeared to you. No less esteeming this worth the presenting to any Greatest, for the smallness of the work, than the Author himself hath been held therefore of the less estimation ; having obtained as much preservation and honour as the greatest of others; the smallness being supplied with so greatly-excellent invention and elocution. Nor lacks even the most younglyenamoured affection it contains a temper grave enough to become both the sight and acceptance of the Gravest. And therefore, howsoever the mistaking world takes it (whose left hand ever received what I gave with my right) if you freely and nobly entertain it, I obtain my end ; your judicious love's continuance being my only object. To which I at all parts commend
Your ancient poor friend,
TO THE COMMUNE READER.
When you see Leander and Hero, the subjects of this Pamphlet, I persuade myself your prejudice will increase to the contempt of it; either headlong presupposing it all one, or at no part matchable, with that partly excellentt
Poem of Master Marlowe's. For your all one, the Works are in nothing alike; a different character being held through both the style, matter, and invention. For the match of it, let but
* “The Divine Poem of Musæus. First of all Bookes. Translated According to the Originall, By Geo: Chapman. London | Printed by Isaac Iaggard. 1616.
7"Partly excellent." It will be remembered that Chapman himself wrote all after the second Sestyad; this reservation, therefore, is a piece of modesty on his part.--Ed.
your eyes be matches, and it will in many parts overmatch it. In the Original, it being* by all the most learned the incomparable Love-Poem of the world. And I would be something sorry you could justly tax me with doing it any wrong in our English; though perhaps it will not so amble under your seasures and censures, as the before published.
Let the great comprehenders and unable utterers of the Greek elocution in other language, drop under their unloadings, how humbly soever they please, and the rather disclaim their own strength, that my weakness may seem the more presumptuous ; it can impose no scruple the more burthen on my shoulders, that I will feel ; unless Reason chance to join arbiter with Will, and appear to me; to whom I am ever prostrately subject. And if envious Misconstruction could once leave tyrannizing over my infortunate Innocence, both the Charity it argued would render them that use it the more Christian, and me industrious, to hale out of them the discharge of their own duties.
Out of the worthy D. Gager's Collections.
Musæus was a renowned Greek Poet, born at Athens, the son of Eumolpus. He lived in the time of Orpheus, and is said to be one of them that went the famous Voyage to Colchos for the Golden Fleece. He wrote of the Gods' genealogy before any other; and invented the Sphere. Whose opinion was, that all things were made of one Matter, and resolved into one again. Of whose works only this one Poem of Hero and Leander is extant. Of himself, in his Sixth Book of Æneids, Virgil makes memorable mention, where in Elysium he makes Sibylla speak this of him
Musæum ante omnes ; medium nam plurima turba
Hunc habet, atque humeris extantem suspicit altis. He was born in Falerum, a town in the middle of Tuscia, or the famous country of Tuscany in Italy, called also Hetruria.
OF ABYDUS AND SESTUS.
Abydus and Sestus were two ancient - Towns; one in Europe, another in Asia ; East and West, opposite ; on both the shores of the Hellespont. Their names are extant in Maps to this day. But in their places are two Castles built, which the Turks call Bogazossas, that is, Castles situate by the sea-side. Seamen now call the place where Sestus stood Malido. It was likewise called Possidonium. But Abydus is called Auco. They are both renowned in all writers for nothing so much as the Love of Leander and Hero.
OF THE HELLESPONT.
Hellespont is the straits of the two seas, Propontis and Egeum, running betwixt Abydus and Sestus. Over which Xerxes built a bridge, and joined these two towns together, conveying over his army of seven hundred thousand men. It is now called by some the Straits of Gallipolis ; but by Frenchmen, Flemings, and others, the Arm of
* Some word, such as “held" or "accounted," seems to be missing here.—Ed.
Saint George. It had his name of Hellespont, because Helle, the daughter of Athamas, King of Thebes, was drowned in it. And therefore of one it is called the Virgin-killing Sea ; of another the Virgin-sea. It is but seven Italian furlongs broad, which is one of our miles, lacking a furlong.
GODDESS, relate the witness-bearing light If that way lie thy course, seek for my Of Loves, that would not bear a humane sake sight;
A Tower, that Sestian Hero once did The Sea-man that transported marriages, make Shipp'd in the night, his bosom plowing th' Her watch-tower, and a torch stood holding seas ;
there, The love-joys that in gloomy clouds did fly By which Leander his sea-course did steer. The clear beams of th' immortal Morning's Seek, likewise, of Abydus ancient towers, eye ;
The roaring sea lamenting to these hours Abydus and fair Sestus, where I hear Leander's Love and Death. But say, how The night-hid Nuptials of young Hero came were ;
He (at Abydus born) to feel the flame Leander's swimming to her; and a Light, Of Hero's love at Sestus, and to bind A Light that was administress of sight In chains of equal fire bright Hero's mind ? To cloudy Venus, and did serve t' address The graceful Hero, born of gentle blood, Night-wedding Hero's nuptial offices : Was Venus' Priest : and since she underA Light that took the very form of Love ; stood Which had been justice in ethereal Jove, No nuptial language, from her parents she When the nocturnal duty had been done, Dwelt in a tower that overlook'd the sea. T' advance amongst the consort of the Sun, For shamefacedness and chastity, she And call the Star that Nuptial Loves did reign'd guide,
Another goddess ; nor was ever train'd And to the Bridegroom gave and graced In women's companies ; nor learn'd to the Bride,
tread Because it was 3companion to the death A graceful dance, to which such years are Of Loves, 4 whose kind cares cost their bred. dearest breath;
The envious spites of women she did fly And that 5fame-freighted ship from ship- (Women for beauty their own sex envy), wrack kept
All her devotion was to Venus done, That such sweet nuptials brought they And to his heavenly Mother her great Son never slept,
Would reconcile with sacrifices ever, Till airi was with a bitter flood inflate, And ever trembled at his flaming quiver. That bore their firm loves as infix'd a hate. Yet 'scaped not so his fiery shafts her But, Goddess, forth, and both one issue
breast ; sing,
For now the popular Venerean Feast, The Light extinct, Leander perishing. Which to Adonis, and great Cypria's Two towns there were, that with one sea State, were wall'd,
The Sestians yearly used to celebrate, Built near, and opposite ; this Sestus call'd, Was come; and to that holy-day came all Abydus that; then Love his bow bent That in the bordering isles the sea did high,
wall. And at both Cities let one arrow fly, To it in flocks they flew; frorn Cyprus That two (a Virgin and a Youth) inflamed: these, The youth was sweetly-graced Leander Environ'd with the rough Carpathian seas; named,
These from Hæmonia; nor remain'd a The virgin, Hero ; Sestus she renowns, Abydus he, in birth ; of both which towns Of all the towns in th' isles Cytherean ; Both were the beauty-circled stars; and Not one was left, that used to dance upon both
The tops of odoriferous Libanon ; Graced with like looks, as with one love Not one of Phrygia, not one of all and troth.
The neighbours seated near the Festival ;
Nor one of opposite Abydus' shore ; Ev'n tired I am with sight, yet doth not None of all these, that virgins' favours find wore,
A satisfaction by my sight my mind. Were absent; all such fill the flowing way, o could I once ascend sweet Hero's bed, When Fame proclaims a solemn holy-day, Let me be straight found in her bosom Not bent so much to offer holy flames,
dead! As to the beauties of assembled dames. I would not wish to be in heaven a God,
The virgin Hero enter'd th' holy place, Were Hero here my wife. But, if forbod And graceful beams cast round about her To lay profane hands on thy holy priest, face,
O Venus, with another such assist Like to the bright orb of the rising Moon. My nuptial longings." Thus pray'd all The top-spheres of her snowy cheeks put
The rest their wounds hid, and in frenzies A glowing redness, like the two-hued rose brake; Her odorous bud beginning to disclose. Her beauty's fire, being so suppress'd, so You would have said, in all her lineaments raged. A meadow full of roses she presents. But thou, Leander, more than all engaged, All over her shey blush'd ; which (putting Wouldst not, when thou hadst view'd th'
amazing Maid, Her white robe, reaching to her ankles) Waste with close stings, and seek no open shone
aid, (While she in passing did her feet dispose) But, with the flaming arrows of her eyes As she had wh been a moving rose. Wounded unwares, thou wouldst in sacrifice Graces in numbers from her parts did flow. Vent th' inflammation thy burnt blood did The Ancients, therefore (since they did not
Or live with sacred medicine of her love. Hero's unbounded beauties), falsely feign'd But now the love-brand in his eye-beams Only three Graces; for, when Hero burn'd, strain'd
And with unconquer'd fire his heart was Into a smile her priestly modesty,
turn'd A hundred Graces grew from either eye. Into a coal ; together wrought the flame; A fit one, sure, the Cyprian Goddess found The virtuous beauty of a spotless dame To be her ministress ; and so highly Sharper to men is than the swiftest shaft ; crown'd
His eye the way by which his heart is With worth her grace was, past all other caught : dames,
And, from the stroke his eye sustains, th That, of a priest made to the Queen of wound Flames,
Opens within, and doth his entrails sound. A new Queen of them she in all eyes Amaze then took him, Impudence and shined ;
Shame And did so undermine each tender mind Made earthquakes in him with their fros Of all the young men, that there was not and flame.
His heart betwixt them toss'd, till ReveBut wish'd fait Hero was his wife, or none. Nor could she stir about the well-built | Took all these prisoners in him ; and from Fane,
thence This way or that, but every way she wan Her matchless beauty, with astonishment, A following mind in all men ; which their Increased his bands: till aguish Love, that eyes,
lent Lighted with all their inmost faculties, Shame and Observance, licensed their reClearly confirm'd; and one, admiring, move ; said,
And, wisely liking impudence in love, "All Sparta I have travell'd, and survey'd Silent he went, and stood against the The City Lacedæmon, where we hear
Maid, All Beauties' labours and contentions were, And in side glances faintly he convey'd A woman, yet so wise and delicate His crafty eyes about her ; with dumb I never saw. It may be Venus gat
shows One of the younger Graces to supply Tempting her mind to error.
And now The place of priesthood to her Deity.
She to conceive his subtle flame, and And therefore of the ruby-colour'd maid joy'd
The odorous neck he with a kiss assay'd, Since he was graceful. Then herself em- And, stricken with the sting of love, he ploy'd
pray'd : Her womanish cunning, turning from him "Dear Venus, next to Venus you must quite
go; Her lovely countenance; giving yet some And next Mirerva, trace Minerva too ; light,
Your like with earthly dames no light can Even by her dark signs, of her kindling
show ; fire,
To Jove's great Daughters I must liken With up and down-looks whetting his you. desire.
Blest was thy great Begetter ; blest was she He joy'd at heart to see Love's sense in Whose womb did bear thee; but most her,
blessedly And no contempt of what he did prefer. The womb itself fared that thy throes did And while he wish'd unseen to urge the prove. rest,
O hear my prayer : pity the need of Love. The day shrunk down her beams to lowest As priest of Venus, practise Venus' rites. West,
Come, and instruct me in her bed'sAnd East ; 8the Even-Star took vantage of delights. her shade.
It fits not you, a virgin, to vow aids Then boldly he his kind approaches made, To Venus' service ; Venus loves no maids. And as he saw the russet clouds increase, If Venus' institutions you prefer, He strain'd her rosy hand, and held his And faithful ceremonies vow to her, peace,
Nuptials and beds they be. If her love But sigh'd, as silence had his bosom binds, broke.
Love love's sweet laws, that soften human When she, as silent, put on anger's cloak, minds. And drew her hand back. He discerning Make me your servant ; husband, if you well
pleased ; Her 'would and would-not, to her boldlier Whom Cupid with his burning shafts hath
seised, And her elaborate robe, with much cost | And hunted to you, as swift Hermes drave wrought,
With his gold-rod Jove's bold son to be About her waist embracing, on he brought slave His love to th' in-parts of the reverend To Lydia's sovereign Virgin ; but for me, fane ;
Venus insulting forced my feet to thee. She (as her love-sparks more and more did I was not guided by wise Mercury. wane)
Virgin, you know, when Atalanta fled Went slowly on, and, with a woman's Out of Arcadia, kind Melanion's bed, words
Affecting virgin-life, your angry Queen, Threatening Leander, thus his boldness Whom first she used with a malignant bords :
spleen, "Why, stranger, are you 10mad? Ill- At last possess'd him of her complete fated man,
heart. Why hale you thus a virgin Sestian ? And you, dear love, because I would avert Keep on your way : let go, fear to offend Your Goddess' anger, I would fain perThe noblesse of my birth-right's either suade." friend.
With these 13love-luring words conform'd It ill becomes you to solicit thus
he made The priest of Venus. Hopeless, dangerous, The maid recusant to his blood's desire, The Ibarr'd-up way is to a virgin's bed.” And set her soft mind on an erring fire. Thus, for the maiden form, she menaced. Dumb she was strook ; and down to earth But he well knew that when these female she threw 12mines
Her rosy eyes, hid in vermilion hue, Break out in fury, they are certain signs Made red with shame. Oft with her foot Of their persuasions. Women's threats she raced once shown,
Earth's upper part ; and oft (as quite unShows in it only all you wish your own. graced)