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Receiv'd the reins of abfolute command,
Now heav'n on all my husbands gone, bestow
Thebes having mistake
flain his father Laius, and married his mother Jocafta; put out his own eyes, and refign'd his realm to his fons, Eteocles and Polynices. Being neglected by them, he makes his prayer to the Fury Tifiphone, to fow debate betwixt the brothers. They agree at laft to reign fingly, each a year by turns, and the first lot is obtained by Eteocles. Jupiter, in a council of the Gods, declares his refolution of punishing the Thebans, and Argives also, by means of a marriage betwixt Polynices and one of the daughters of Adraftus king of Argos. Juno opposes, but to no effect; and Mercury is fent on a meffage to the fhades, to the ghost of Laius, who is to appear to Eteocles, and provoke him to break the agreement. Polynices in the mean time departs from Thebes by night, is overtaken by a storm, and arrives at Argos;, where he meets with Tydeus, who had fled from Calydon, having kill'd his brother. Adraftus entertains them, having received an oracle from Apollo that his daughters fhould be marry'd to a Boar and a Lion, which he understands to be meant of these strangers, by whom the hides of those beafts were worn, and who arriv'd at the time when he kept an annual feast in honour of that God. The rife of this folemnity he relates to his guests, the loves of Phoebus and Pfamathe, and the story of Chorobus. He enquires, and is made acquainted with their descent and quality: The facrifice is renew'd, and the book concludes with a Hymn to Apollo.
The Tranflator hopes he need not apologize for his Choice of this piece, which was made almoft in his Childhood. But finding the Verfion better than he expected, he gave it Jome Correction a few years afterwards.