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A night of fultry clouds involv'd around
The tow'rs, the fields, and the devoted ground :
And now a thousand lives together fled,
Death with his scythe cut off the fatal thread,
And a whole province in his triumph led.

But Phœbus afk'd why noxious fires appear, And raging Sirius blafts the fickly year; Demands their lives by whom his monster fell, And dooms a dreadful facrifice to hell. 750

Bleft be thy duft, and let eternal fame
Attend thy Manes, and preferve thy name,
Undaunted hero! who divinely brave,
In fuch a caufe difdain'd thy life to fave;
But view'd the shrine with a fuperior look, 755
And its upbraided Godhead thus bespoke :

With piety, the foul's fecureft guard,
And confcious virtue, ftill its own reward,
Willing I come, unknowing how to fear'; 759
Nor fhalt thou, Phœbus, find a fuppliant here.
Thy monster's death to me was ow'd alone,
And 'tis a deed too glorious to difown.
Behold him here, for whom, fo many days,
Impervious clouds conceal'd thy fullen rays;

Quaeris, inique, poli. quod fi monftra effera magnis
Cara adeo Superis, jacturaque vilior orbis, 766
Mors hominum, et faevo tanta inclementia coelo

Quid meruere Argi? me, me, divûm optime, folum
Objeciffe caput fatis praeftabit, an illud
Lene magis cordi, quod desolata domorum
Tecta vides? ignique datis cultoribus omnis
Lucet ager? fed quid fando tua tela manufque
Demoror? expectant matres, fupremaque fundunt
Vota mihi. fatis eft: merui ne parcere velles.
Proinde move pharetras, arcufque intende fonoros,
Infignemque animam leto demitte: fed illum
Pallidus Inachiis qui defuper imminet Argis,
Dum morior, depelle globum. Fors aequa me-


Refpicit. ardentem tenuit reverentia caedis 780
Latoïden, tristemque viro fummiffus honorem
Largitur vitae. noftro mala nubila coelo
Diffugiunt. at tu ftupefacti a limine Phœbi
Exoratus abis. inde haec ftata facra quotannis

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For whom, as Man no longer claim'd thy care, Such numbers fell by peftilential air! But if th' abandon'd race of human kind From Gods above no more compassion find If such inclemency in heav'n can dwell, Yet why muft unoffending Argos feel The vengeance due to this unlucky fteel? On me, on me, let all thy fury fall, Nor err from me, fince I deserve it all: Unless our defert cities please thy fight, Or fun'ral flames reflect a grateful light. 775 Discharge thy fhafts, this ready bofom rend, And to the shades a ghoft triumphant send; But for my Country let my fate atone, Be mine the vengeance, as the crime my o


Merit distress'd, impartial heav'n relieves : 780 Unwelcome life relenting Phoebus gives;

For not the vengeful pow'r, that glow'd with rage, With fuch amazing virtue durft engage. The clouds difpers'd, Apollo's wrath expir'd, And from the wond'ring God th' unwilling youth retir'd. 785

Thence we these altars in his temple raise,
And offer annual honours, feafts, and praise;

P &

Solemnes recolunt epulae, Phœbeiaque placat Templa novatus honos: has forte invifitis aras. Vos quae progenies? quanquam Calydonius Oe


Et Parthaoniae (dudum fi certus ad aures
Clamor iit) tibi jura domûs; tu pande quis Argos
Advenias? quando haec variis fermonibus hora eft.
Dejecit moeftes extemplo Ifmenius heros
In terram vultus, taciteque ad Tydea laefum
Obliquare oculos. tum longa filentia movit :
Non fuper hos divûm tibi fum quaerendus honores
Unde genus, quae terra mihi: quis defluat ordo
Sanguinis antiqui, piget inter facra fateri.
Sed fi praecipitant miferum cognofcere curae,
Cadmus origo patrum, tellus Mavortia Thebae,
Et genetrix Jocafta mihi. tum motus Adraftus
Hofpitiis (agnovit enim) quid nota recondis?
Scimus, ait; nec fic averfum fama Mycenis 810
Volvit iter. regnum, et furias, oculofque pudentes

These folemn feafts propitious Phoebus please : These honours, ftill renew'd, his antient wrath appease.

But fay, illuftrious guest (adjoin'd the King) What name you bear, from what high race you fpring?


The noble Tydeus stands confefs'd, and known Our neighbour Prince, and heir of Calydon. Relate your fortunes, while the friendly night

And filent hours to various talk invite.

795 The Theban bends on earth his gloomy eyes, Confus'd, and fadly thus at length replies : Before these altars how fhall I proclaim (Oh gen'rous prince) my nation, or my name, Or thro' what veins our ancient blood has roll'd? Let the fad tale for ever reft untold! 801

Yet if propitious to a wretch unknown,
You seek to share in forrows not your own;
Know then from Cadmus I derive my race,
Jocafta's fon, and Thebes my native place. 805
To whom the King (who felt his gen'rous breast
Touch'd with concern for his unhappy guest)
Replies:-Ah why forbears the fon to name
His wretched father known too well by fame?

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