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And now Aurora reddens in the east;
The stars had vanished; when, far off, we see
The dusky mountains and the long low shore
Of Italy. And “ Italy” rings first
Achates' voice, and Italy with shouts
Of joy my comrades greet. My father then
Wreathes a great cup, and fills it up with wine,
And, standing in the stern, invokes the gods :
“ Ye potent deities of sea and land,
And of the storms, grant us a passage safe,
And favoring breezes.” Soon the wished-for winds
Freshen, and wider grows the harbor now;
Minerva's temple on a height appears ;
We furl the sails, and turn our prows to land.
Virgil. Tr. C. P. Cranch.
ET nor the Median groves, nor rivers rolled,
Ganges and Hermus, o'er their beds of gold,
Nor Ind, nor Bactra, nor the blissful land
Where incense spreads o'er rich Pancha:a's sand,
Nor all that fancy paints in fabled lays,
O native Italy ! transcend thy praise.
Though here no bulls beneath the enchanted yoke
Withi fiery nostrils o’er the furrow smoke,
No hydra teeth embattled harvest yield,
Spear and bright helmet bristling o'er the field;
Yet golden corn each laughing valley fills,
The vintage reddens on a thousand hills,
Luxuriant olives spread from shore to shore,
And flocks unnumbered range the pastures o’er.
Hence the proud war-horse rushes on the foe,
Clitumnus/ hence thy herds, more white than snow,
And stately bull, that, of gigantic size,
Supreme of victims on the altar lies,
Bathed in thy sacred stream oft led the train,
When Rome in pomp of triumph decked the fane.
Here Spring perpetual leads the laughing hours,
And Winter wears a wreath of Summer flowers;
The o'erloaded branch twice fills with fruits the year,
And twice the teeming flocks their offspring rear.
Yet here no lion breeds, no tiger strays,
No tempting aconite the touch betrays,
No monstrous snake the uncoiling volume trails,
Or gathers, orb on orb, his iron scales.
But many a peopled city towers around,
And many a rocky cliff with castle crowned,
And many an antique wall, whose hoary brow
O’ershades the flood, that guards its base below.
Say, shall I add, enclosed on every side
What seas defend thee, and what lakes divide ?
Thine, mighty Larius ? or, with surging waves,
Where, fierce as ocean, vexed Benacus raves ?
Havens and ports, the Lucrine's added mole,
Seas, that enraged along their bulwark roll,
Where Julian waves reject the indignant tide,
And Tuscan billows down Avernus glide ?
Here brass and silver ores rich veins expose,
And pregnaut mines exhaustless gold enclose.
Blest in thy race, in battle unsubdued
The Marsian youth, and Sabine's hardy brood,
By generous toil the bold Ligurian's steeled,
And spear-armed Volsci that disdain to yield :
Camilli, Marii, Decii, swell thy line,
And, thunderbolts of war, each Scipio, thine !
Thou Cæsar! chief, whose sword the East o'erpowers,
And the tamed Indian drives from Roman towers.
All hail, Saturnian earth! hail, loved of fame,
Land rich in fruits, and men of mighty name !
For thee I dare the sacred founts explore,
For thee the rules of ancient art restore,
Themes, once to glory raised, again rehearse,
And pour through Roman towns the Ascræan verse.
Virgil. Tr. William Sotheby.
GILIUM’S woody heights my wonder raise,
Nor shall my verse defraud it of its praise :
The genius of the soil, or guardian power
Of Rome's bigh lord preserved in danger's hour
Its native thickets; and the foe withstood
With narrow frith, as with an ocean’s flood.
And hither from the shattered city fled
Rome's refuged exiles, breathing from their dread.
The Gothic horsemen in their naval might
Had swept the seas, and waged unnatural fight;
One wondrous haven lent a sheltering home,
Far from the conquering Goth, yet near to Rome.
We touch on Umbro, no ignoble tide;
In whose safe inouth the storm-scared vessels ride :
So smooth the channel spreads its easy plain,
When the fierce tempest rushes on the main.
I sought to anchor in this tranquil bay,
But that our eager crew forbade delay.
Thus hastening on our course, at once the wind
Fell to a calm, the parting light declined;
Nor could we stretch before the onward gale,
Nor yet returning bend the backward sail.
By night, we quarter on the sandy shore,
And myrtle groves for evening homes explore.
With oars up-propped on oars we rear a shed,
The pole, transversely, roofs it overhead.
With dawn we rowed along the calmy tide,
Yet felt no motion, though the oars we plied.
Gazing the deep, the vessel seemed to stand;
Her course was seen from the receding land.
Ilva appears, for mines of steel renowned,
No richer metal lurks in Noric ground,
From Biturix' capacious furnace flows,
Or massive in Sardonian caverns grows.
Better the soil that teems with iron ore,
Than yellow sand on Tagus' gravelly shore;
For deadly gold of vice the basis lays;
The lust of gold to every crinie betrays.
Our loosened course the near Falernia ends, Though scarce the sun the middle sky ascends. There, as it chanced, the village streets among, Did sacred sports unbend the rustic throng. Osiris' renovated form again With joyful harvests crowned the teeming plain.
We leave the village, loist the sail, and glide
O’er slimy sands, a mere's delicious tide.
The waves, enclosed, with free expansion stray,
In the wide pool the wanton fishes play:
But ill repaid the pleasant station's ease ;
Its keeper churlish as Antiphates.
Adverse the north-wind rises ; but, as day Hides the pale stars, we sweep the watery way With bending oars; till Populonia yields Its natural bay, that winds into the fields. No watch-tower there, on deep foundations raised, High-seen in air, with nightly splendor blazed; But age had worn the solid rocks away, And insulated one with slow decay: One rock, a natural beacon, spiring stood, And overtopped the subjugated flood. A twofold use the castled cliff supplied, An inland fortress, and an ocean guide. Sunk are the monuments of ages past, Time's eating canker has consumed the last : Of walls long raised faint vestiges are found, And roofs inearthed with ruins heave the ground. If human dissolution prompt the sigh, Lo! cities, e’en as men, are doomed to dic.
When shifts the North, we hoist the sail with speed, While shines the dawn-star on his rosy steed. Next its dim mountains Corsica displayed, Their cloud-capt heads were blended into shade; As fades the dubious moon with crescent light, And veiled in gloom eludes the straining sight.
Capraria rises, as our course we run;