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ships, Cynægirus seized one of the vessels, which he continued to hold till his hand was cut off. Such is the circumstance as told by Herodotus.* It is related with some marvellous additions by the later writers. It was at an early age that Æschylus applied himself to the cultivation of tragic poetry. It was allegorically said by the ancients, that when a child, being placed to watch some grapes in a field, he fell asleep, and that Bacchus appeared to him in a dream, and ordered him to make tragedies. Some liberties which he took with the popular mythology, caused him to be suspected of impiety. When the enraged people were preparing to stone him to death, his brother Aminias interposed in his behalf, and turning aside his garment, displayed his mutilated arm, and diverted the popular fury. Æschylus at length quitted his native country, and departed to Sicily, whether through the compulsion of his enemies, or his jealousy at the success of his rivals, Sophocles or Simonides. He was well received in Sicily, in which island he died. Respecting the cause of his death a strange and incredible story is related. An eagle, it is said, which was bearing a tortoise through the air, let it fall on his bald head, mistaking it for a rock. He probably died in the eighty-first Olympiad, at the age of sixty-nine. In his epitaph he seems to rest his pride rather on his military exploits than his literary fame, appealing to the field of Marathon and the long-haired Persian as witnesses of his valour,
Αλκην ευδοκιμον Μαραθωνιον αλσος αν ειποι, ,
In his personal character he was silent and grave. He is said by Cicero to have been attached to the Pythagorean philosophy. He was addicted to intoxication, in which state he is said to have composed his tragedies, which gave occasion to Sophocles to remark, that though: he did things well, he knew not what he did.
He was the author of many improvements both in dramatic composition and representation, though in both the boldness of his conceptions seems sometimes to have degenerated into wildness and extravagance. He gave to the habits in which his performers were dressed forms so dignified and majestic, that they were adopted by the priests for the service of the altar. He arranged the dances per- , formed by his chorus, which were usually well adapted to the subject. In his play of the Eumenides he introduced fifty furies on the stage, in disguises so terrible as to produce the most alarming effects on women and children who were present. On this occasion the magistrates interfered, and a law was passed limiting the number of which the Chorus should consist, with a penalty in case of the violation of the rule. Æschylus limited the office of the Chorus in the conduct of his tragedies, multiplied the number of characters, and introduced a chief character on whom the interest of the piece should turn. Æschylus is said to have acknowledged the obligations under which
Ælian, vi. 114,
he lay to the father of poetry, by declaring that his tragedies were but fragments from the splendid feast of Homer. When the prize was conferred on the performance of an antagonist of inferior merit, he made his appeal to posterity, strongly expressing his confidence in the ultimate justice of the decision which would be made.
Various honours were paid to his memory at Athens. A statue, was erected to him in the theatre of Bacchus, and his exploits at the battle of Marathon were represented in a picture.
Only seven of his numerous plays are extant; the Prometheus vinctus, the Seven Champions before Thebes, the Persæ, the Agamemnon, the Choephoræ, the Eumenides, and the Suppliant Virgins. The stage of Æschylus, as might naturally be expected, is not wholly free from imperfections which mark its recent origin from the rude and gross state in which he received the drama. His plots are simple, and are commonly destitute of those artifices by which later writers have sought to excite and suspend attention. His choral odes, like the Dithyramb from which they sprung, are full of bold and excessive metaphors, which often obscure rather than illustrate his thoughts. He has in a considerable degree transferred the same style even to the dramatic parts, where it necessarily becomes on many occasions tumid and extravagant. On the other hand his thoughts are bold and well conceived, and the language in which they are expressed, though loaded with pompous metaphors, is precise and energetic. He does not, perhaps, excel in the general delineation of character, but has in some instances produced scenes which equal in impressive effect those of any tragic writer, ancient or modern. Some further remarks on his style, and his remaining works, will be reserved for another paper.
The following are the editions of Æschylus :
This edition is not so highly esteemed as some of the Aldine productions. The Agamemnon and Choephoræ, each imperfect, are so mingled and confused, as to form apparently but one play. The edition was superintended by Fr.: Asulanus.
Turnebi, Paris, 8vo. 1552. This edition was rendered more correct than the Aldine by the aid of a MS. of Æmarius Ranconetus, but the Agamemnon was left imperfect.
Robortelli, Venet. 8vo. 1552. This edition is rare and valuable, and Æschylus owes much to the able critic by whom it was superintended. He likewise printed the scholia separately in the same year.
Victorii, Paris, 4to. 1557. This edition was printed by Henry Stephens, and is the first which contains the entire Agamemnon.
Canteri, Antwerp, 12mo. 1580. This edition is printed in a very small size, but elegantly and correctly, by Plantin. It is the basis of some succeeding editions. The editor bestowed much attention on the arrangement of the metres.
Stanleii, Lond, fol. 1663 and 1664. This edition is printed in a magnificent form. It contains the scholia, the fragments, the notes
and prefaces of preceding editors, and the annotations of the very learned editor himself. “ The text is from Canter.
Pauro, Hag. Com. 4to, 1745, 2 vol. This edition is a republication of the former, with some additions, which have not been considered as greatly augmenting its value.
Two elegant editions were printed at Glasgow in 1746, in 4to. and 12mo.
Schutz, Hal. Sax. 8vo. 1782-99, 3 vol. This edition, though it contains all the plays, is not yet complete, the scholia, fragments, and apparatus historicus being still withheld. It is printed in a commodious form, though not an elegant manner. It contains a collection of various readings from all the preceding editions and some MSS., and is illustrated by an ample commentary. The accuracy of the editor in his report of various readers, cannot, it is said, be depended
His commentary is elegant and learned, and highly useful for the illustration of the frequent difficulties of his author. His corrections are commonly ingenious, but perhaps not always necessary. Schutz likewise published an edition without the commentaries, in two volumes, 8vo. with a Latin version, Hal. 1800. In this edition, intended only for the commodious perusal of the author, he has freely admitted some conjectural emendations.
A magnificent edition in folio was surreptitiously and incorrectly printed at Glasgow in 1795, from the text of Professor Porson. His genuine edition was printed in 1794, in two volumes, 8vo. but not published till 1806. It contains, as might be expected, many admirable improvements of the text. "It is deeply to be regretted that the notes have not appeared; for we have no hesitation in avowing our decided opinion, that the corrections already published, admirable and unrivalled as they are, exhibit only an imperfect specimen of Mr. Porson's achievements in restoring the text of Æschylus." Monthly Rev. May, 1807, App.
An edition was published at Leipsic in 1805 by Bothe, in which the text is so licentiously altered and corrupted as to be unworthy of perusal.
SELECT TRANSLATIONS FROM THE GREEK ANTHOLOGY.
Along their banks a pure translucent tide;
But now their waves are shrunk and channel dried,
Was with the crimson stain of murder dyed.
To cool the sparkling heat of wine we glide,
The turn of thought in this epigram evidently depends on the ancient custom of mixing water with wine, in order to cool it. This, which would be considered as no great luxury by most of our countrymen, was so much esteemed in the hot countries of Greece and the Levant, as to have been reduced by the natives to a regular system with all the most refined rules of curious science, In Dr. Barry's work “On the Wines of the Ancients," may be found a very minute account of this cooling process. Several allusions to the custom may be produced from the Anthology, particularly the epigram which Prior has thus imitated.
Great Bacehus, born in thunder and in fire,
mix water with
wine." A passage in Aristænetus will give some idea of the extent of refinement to which this luxury was sometimes carried. A lover is describing the pleasures of a day passed alone with his mistress in a beautiful country-retreat, which a friend had lent him for the purpose. As they wandered at evening through a shady valley, a small stream of cold and transparent water, unobserved before, glided by their feet and interrupted their progress. Down this "infant current" a “ fleet" of drinking vessels, formed like ships, and filled with the most delicious wine, sailed before their eyes. The master of the garden had planned this agreeable entertainment, unknown to his guests, and managed it with the most skilful delicacy.
For where they loaded the nectareous fleet,
Aristæn. translated by Sheridan, 8c. 1771. Ep. 3.
A still further refinement on the luxury was, that the very leaves, which formed the sails of these little vessels, were of such medicinal virtue, that the lovers might indulge, without apprehension of consequences, in the intoxicating beverage.
From Strato the Sardian.
Firing the Orient with a blaze of light,
Now o'er that beauty steals the approach of night.
This exquisitely beautiful epigram reminds me of that of Paul the Silentiary, inserted in p: 75 of my Translations, and which occasion to introduce the reply of M. de Nivernois to the verses which accompanied the offering, made by Madame de Mirepoix, of a lock of her grey hair.. Those verses are hardly inferior to the reply. They have, perhaps, less point, but are by no ineans deficient in the spirit of gaiety and tenderness which characterizes the former. I have attempied a translation of them, which, by way of variety, I will in. sert, in this place.
Look, they are grey--but turn'd to grey
These locks our union's date attest;
Which leaves us yet.in friendship blest.
Whose lustre, as in early prime,
Kindled.by choice, and fed by time.
Shall force our bosoms to repress it :
Allow the freedom to confess it.
ACCOUNTS OF, AND EXTRACTS FROM, RARE AND
AN ACCOUNT. OF THE, BODLEIAN MS. TERENCE.
(Continued from þ. 135.) So much for general remark: now to be a little more particular.It should, then, seem, that Dr. Bentley had not used this MS. when his edition of these Plays was published. I have collated, therefore, the first Scene in the Bodl. Terence with Dr. Bentley's edition, and leave the result of the comparison with the reader, that he may
form his own conclusion on the worth of the manuscript.,
B. v. 5. iis. B. M. his. B. 8. Ego postquam te emi, a parvulo ut semper tibi. B. M. Ego postquam te emi a parvulo, ut sem
B. 13. Haud muto. Sos. Factum gaudeo. B. Si. Haud muto factum. Sos. Gaudeo, &c. B. 15. Quasi exprobratio est inmemori benefici. B. M. ininemoris beneficii. B. 18. quid est quod. B. M. Quid est quid. B. M. 24. no, ać. B: 32. et tamen omnia hæc. B. M. et tamen hæc omnia. B. 33. nam id ego arbitror. B. M. nam id arbitror. B. 35. cum . quibus erat cumque una, iis sese dedere. B. M. cum quibus erat, cumque una iis sese dedere. B. 38. ita facillime. . B. M. ita ut facillime. B. 45. huc viciniä. B. M. huic viciniæ. B. 48. lana ac tela. B. M. lana et tela. B. 52.