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Thus did the league their impious arms restrain,
But fcarce fubfifted to the second reign.

20;

Yet then, no proud aspiring piles were rais'd, 200 No fretted roof with polish'd metals blaz’d; No labour'd columns in long order plac'd, No Grecian stone the pompous arches grac'd ; No nightly bands in glitt'ring armour wait Before the fleepless Tyrant's guarded gate; No chargers then were wrought in burnish'd gold, Nor filver vases took the forming mold; Nor gems on bowls emboss'd were seen to shine, Blaze on the brims, and fparkle in the wine Say, wretched rivals! what provokes your rage? 210 Say, to what end your impious arms engage? Not all bright Phoebus views in early morn, Or when his ev'ning beams the west adorn,

Haec inter fratres pietas erat; haec mora pugnae
Sola, nec in regem perduratura fecundum.

Et nondum craffo laquearia fulva metallo,
Montibus aut alte Graiis effulta nitebant
Atria, congeftos fatis explicitura clientes.
Non impacatis regum advigilantia fomnis
Pila, nec alterna ferri ftatione gementes
Excubiae, nec cura mero committere gemmas,
Atque aurum violare cibis. Sed nuda poteftas
Armavit fratres: pugna eft de paupere regno.
Dumque uter anguftae fqualentia jugera Dirces.
Verteret, aut Tyrii folio non altus ovaret

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205

Exulis, ambigitur; periit jus, fafque, bonumque,
Et vitae, mortifque pudor. Quo tenditis iras, 210
Ah miferi? quid fi peteretur crimine tanto
Limes uterque poli, quem Sol emiffus Eco
Cardine, quem porta vergens prospectat Ibera?
Quafque procul terras obliquo fidere tangit

When the fouth glows with his meridian ray,
And the cold north receives a fainter day;
For crimes like these, not all thofe realms fuffice,
Were all thofe realms the guilty victor's prize!
But fortune now (the lots of empire thrown)
Decrees to proud Etoocles the crown :

215

What joys, oh Tyrant! fwell'd thy foul that day, zzo
When all were flaves thou couldst around furvey,
Pleas'd to behold unbounded pow'r thy own,
And fingly fill a fear'd and envy'd throne!
But the vile Vulgar, ever difcontent,

Their growing fears in fecret murmurs vent;
Still prone to change, tho' ftill the flaves of ftate,
And fure the monarch whom they have, to hate;
New lords they madly make, then tamely bear,
And foftly curfe the Tyrants whom they fear.
And one of thofe who groan beneath the fway
Of Kings impos'd, and grudgingly obey,
(Whom envy to the great and vulgar spight
With fcandal arm'd, th' ignoble mind's delight)

Avius, aut Borea gelidas, madidive tepentes
Igne Noti? quid fi Tyriae Phrygiaeve sub unum
Convectentur opes? loca dira, arcefque nefandae
Suffecere odio, furtifque immanibus emptum eft
Oedipodae fediffe loco. Jam forte carebat

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230

215

Dilatus Polynicis honos. quis tum tibi, faeve, 220
Quis fuit ille dies? vacua cum folus in aula
Refpiceres jus omne tuum, cun&tofque minores,
Et nufquam par ftare caput? Jam murmura ferpunt
Plebis Echioniae, tacitumque a principe vulgus
Diffident, et (qui mos populis) venturus amatur.
Atque aliquis, cui mens humili laefiffe veneno

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Exclaim'd-O Thebes! for thee what fates remain, What woes attend this inauspicious reign ?

235

Muft we, alas! our doubtful necks prepare,
Each haughty master's yoke by turns to bear,
And ftill to change whom chang'd we ftill must fear?
Thefe now controul a wretched people's fate,
These can divide, and these reverse the state:
Ev'n Fortune rules no more: O fervile land,
Where exil'd tyrants ftill by turns command!
Thou fire of gods and men, imperial Jove!
Is this th' eternal doom decreed above?

On thy own offspring haft thou fix'd this fate,
From the first birth of our unhappy ftate;
When banish'd Cadmus, wand'ring o'er the main,
For loft Europa fearch'd the world in vain,
And fated in Boeotian fields to found

A rifing empire on a foreign ground,

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First rais'd our walls on that ill-omen'd plain,
Where earth-born brothers were by brothers flain?

Summa, nec impofitos unquam cervice volenti
Ferre duces: Hancne Ogygiis, ait, afpera rebus 235
Fata tulere vicem? toties mutare timendos,
Alternoque jugo dubitantia fubdere colla!
Partiti verfant populorum fata, manuque
Fortunam fecere levem. femperne viciffim
Exulibus fervire dabor? tibi, fumme deorum,
Terrarumque fator, fociis hanc addere mentem
Sedit an inde vetus Thebis extenditur omen,
Ex quo Sidonii nequicquam blanda juvenci
Pondera, Carpathio juffus fale quaerere Cadmus
Exul Hyanteos invenit regna per agros:
Fraternafque acies foetae telluris hiatu,
Augurium, feros demifit adufque nepotes?

250

What lofty looks th' unrival'd monarch bears!

How all the tyrant in his face appears!

What fullen fury clouds his fcornful brow!

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Gods! how his eyes with threat'ning ardour glow!
Can this imperious lord forget to reign,
Quit all his ftate, defcend, and ferve again?
Yet, who, before, more popularly bow'd,
Who more propitious to the fuppliant croud?
Patient. of right, familiar in the throne?
What wonder then? he was not then alone.
O wretched we, a vile fubmiffive train,
Fortune's tame fools, and slaves in ev'ry reign!
As when two winds with rival force contend, 265.
This way; and that, the wav'ring fails they bend,
While freezing Boreas, and black Eurus blow,
Now here, now there, the reeling veffel throw :
Thus, on each fide, alas! our tott'ring state
Feels all the fury of refistless fate;

And doubtful ftill, and still diftracted ftands,

270

While that Prince threatens, and while this commands.

And now th' almighty Father of the Gods Convenes a Council in the bleft abodes:

260

Cernis ut erectum torva fub fronte minetur
Saevior affurgens dempto conforte potestas?
Quas gerit ore minas ? quanto premit omnia faftu ?
Hicne unquam privatus erit? tamen ille precanti
Mitis, et affatu bonus et patientior aequi.
Quid mirum ? non folus erat. nos vilis in omnes
Prompta manus cafus domino cuicunque parati.
Qualiter hinc gelidus Boreas, hinc nubifer Eurus 255
Vela trahunt, nutat mediae fortuna carinae.
Heu dubio fufpenfa metu, tolerandaque nullis
Afpera fors populis! hic imperat : ille minatur. 270.
At Jovis imperiis rapidi fuper atria coeli

Far in the bright receffes of the skies,

High o'er the rolling heav'ns, a mansion lies,
Whence, far below, the Gods at once survey
The realms of rifing and declining day,

275

And all th' extended space of earth, and air, and fea.
Full in the midft, and on a starry Throne,
The Majefty of heav'n superior shone;
Serene he look'd, and gave an awful nod,
And all the trembling fpheres confefs'd the God.
At Jove's affent, the deities around
In folemn ftate the confiftory crown'd.
Next a long order of inferior pow'rs

}

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Afcend from hills, and plains, and shady bow'rs;
Those from whofe urns the rolling rivers flow;
And those that give the wand'ring winds to blow :
Here all their rage, and ev'n their murmurs cease, 290
And facred filence reigns, and univerfal peace.
A fhining fynod of majestic Gods

Gilds with new luftre the divine abodes;

Lectus concilio divûm convenerat ordo
Interiore polo. fpatiis hinc omnia juxta
Primaeque occiduaeque domus, effufa fub omni
Terra atque unde die. mediis fefe arduus infert
Jpfe deis, placido quatiens tamen omnia vultu,
Stellantique locat folio. nec protinus aufi
Coelicolae, veniam donec pater ipfe fedendi
Tranquilla jubet effe manu. mox turba vagorum
Semideûm, et fummis cognati nubibus Amnes,
Et compreffa metu fervantes murmura venti.
Aurea tecta replent; mixta convexa deorum

NOTES.

280

VER. 281.] placido quatiens tamen omnia vultu, is the common reading; I believe it fhould be nutu, with reference to the word quations.

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