Page images

There huge Coloffes rofe, with trophies crown'd,
And Runic characters were grav'd around.
There fate Zamolxis with erected eyes,

And Odin here in mimic trances dies.

There on rude iron columns, finear'd with blood, 120
The horrid forms of Scythian heroes stood.

Druids and Bards (their once loud harps unftrung)
And youths that died to be by Poets fung.
Thefe and a thousand more of doubtful fame,
To whom old fables gave a lasting name,
In ranks adorn'd the Temple's outward face;
The wall in luftre and effect like glass,
Which, o'er each object casting various dyes,
Enlarges fome, and others multiplies:
Nor void of emblem was the mystic wall,
For thus romantic Fame increases all.

The Temple shakes, the founding gates unfold,
Wide vaults appear, and roofs of fretted gold:
Rais'd on a thousand pillars wreath'd around
With laurel-foliage, and with eagles crown'd:
Of bright transparent beryl were the walls,
The freezes gold, and gold the capitals:

As heaven with stars, the roof with jewels glows,
And ever-living lamps depend in rows.

Full in the paffage of each spacious gate,

The fage Hiftorians in white garments wait;







Ver. 132. The wall in luftre, &c.]

It fhone lighter than a glass,

And made well more than it was,
As kind of thing Fame is.

Grav'd'o'er their feats the form of Time was found,
His scythe revers'd, and both his pinions bound.
Within stood Heroes, who through loud alarms
In bloody fields purfued renown in arms.

High on a throne with trophies charg'd, I view'd
The Youth that all things but himself fubdued;
His feet on fceptres and tiaras trod,

And his horn'd head bely'd the Libyan God.

[ocr errors]

There Cæfar, grac'd with both Minervas, fhone; 155 Cæfar, the world's great mafter, and his own;

Unmov'd, fuperior still in every state,

And scarce detefted in his Country's fate.

But chief were thofe, who not for empire fought,
But with their toils their people's fafety bought : 160
High o'er the reft Epaminondas ftood;

Timoleon, glorious in his brother's blood;
Bold Scipio, faviour of the Roman state;
Great in his triumphs, in retirement great;
And wife Aurelius, in whose well-taught mind
With boundless power unbounded virtue join'd,
His own ftrict judge, and patron of mankind.

Much fuffering heroes next their honours claim,
Thofe of lefs noify, and lefs guilty fame,
Fair virtue's filent train: fupreme of these
Here ever shines the godlike Socrates:


He whom ungrateful Athens could expell,

At all times juft, but when he fign'd the Shell:

Here his abode the martyr'd Phocion claims,

With Agis, not the last of Spartan names:


Unconquer'd Cato fhews the wound he tore,
And Brutus his ill Genius meets no more.


But in the centre of the hallow'd choir,
Six pompous columns o'er the rest aspire;
Around the shrine itself of Fame they stand,
Hold the chief honours, and the fane command.
High on the firft, the mighty Homer shone;
Eternal adamant compos'd his throne;
Father of verse! in holy fillets dref,
His filver beard wav'd gently o'er his breast;
Though blind, a boldness in his looks appears;
In years he feem'd, but not impair'd by years.
The wars of Troy were round the pillar seen :
Here fierce Tydides wounds the Cyprian Queen;
Here Hector glorious from Patroclus' fall,
Here dragg'd in triumph round the Trojan wall.
Motion and life did every part inspire,

Bold was the work, and prov'd the master's fire;


Ver. 179. Six pompous columns, &c.]

From the dees many a pillere,

Of metal that fhone not full clere, &c.

Upon a pillere faw I stonde

That was of lede and iron fine,

Him of the fect Saturnine,

The Ebraicke Jofephus the old, &c.

Upon an iron pillere strong,

That painted was all endlong,
With tigers' blood in every place,
The Tholofan that hight Stace,
That bare of Thebes up the name, &c.

Ver. 182.]

Full wonder high on a pilere

Of iron, he the great Omer,

And with him Dares and Titus, &c.

[blocks in formation]




A strong

A ftrong expreffion most he feem'd t’affect,
And here and there disclos'd a brave neglect.
A golden column next in rank appear'd,
On which a fhrine of pureft gold was rear'd;
Finish'd the whole, and labour'd every part,
With patient touches of unwearied art:
The Mantuan there in sober triumph sate,
Compos'd his posture, and his look fedate;
On Homer still he fix'd a reverend eye,
Great without pride, in modest majesty.
In living sculpture on the fides were spread
The Latian wars, and haughty Turnus dead;
Eliza ftretch'd upon the funeral pyre,

Æneas bending with his aged fire:




Troy flam'd in burning gold, and o'er the throne
ARMS AND THE MAN in golden cyphers fhone.
Four fwans fuftain a car of filver bright,
With heads advanc'd, and pinions ftretch'd for flight:
Here, like fome furious prophet, Pindar rode,

And feem'd to labour with th' inspiring God.




Ver. 196, &c.]

There faw I ftand on a pillere
That was of tinned iron cleere,
The Latin Poet Virgyle,

That hath bore up of a great while
The fame of pius Æneas:

And next him on a pillere was
Of copper, Venus' clerke Ovide,
That hath fowen wondrous wide
The great God of Love's fame-

Across the harp a careless hand he flings,
And boldly finks into the founding strings.
The figur'd games of Greece the column grace,
Neptune and Jove furvey the rapid race.
The youths hang o'er their chariots as they run;
The fiery steeds seem starting from the stone;
The champions in distorted postures threat;
And all appear'd irregularly great.

Here happy Horace tun'd th' Aufonian lyre
To sweeter founds, and temper'd Pindar's fire :
Pleas'd with Alcæus' manly rage t' infuse
The fofter spirit of the Sapphic Muse.
The polish'd pillar different sculptures grace;
A work outlasting monumental brass.
Here fmiling Loves and Bacchanals appear,
The Julian star and great Auguftus here.
The Doves, that round the infant Poet spread
Myrtles and bays hung hovering o'er his head.
Here, in a shrine that caft a dazzling light,
Sate fix'd in thought the mighty Stagirite;



Tho faw I on a pillere by
Of iron wrought full fternly,
The great Poet Dan Lucan,
That on his fhoulders bore up
As hye as that I might fee,
The fame of Julius and Pompee.
And next him on a pillere ftode
Of fulphure, like as he were wode,
Dan Claudian, fothe for to tell,
That bare up all the fame of hell, &c.






« EelmineJätka »