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As for the volume that revil'd the dames,

434

'Twas torn to fragments, and condemn'd to flames.

Now heav'n on

all my husbands gone, bestow

Pleasures above, for tortures felt below:

That reft they wish'd for, grant them in the grave, And bless those fouls my conduct help'd to fave!

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EDIPUS King of Thebes having by miftake flain his father Laius, and marry'd his mother Jocafta; put out his own eyes, and refign'd the 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 alfo, by means of a marriage betwixt Polynices and one of the daughters of Adraftus King of Argos. Juno oppofes, but to no effect; and Mercury is fent on a message 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 receiv'd an oracle from Apollo that his daughters fhould be marry'd to a Boar and a Lion, which he understands to be meant of thefe ftrangers by whom the hides of thofe 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 ftory of Chorebus. He enquires, and is made acquainted with their defcent and quality: The facrifice is renew'd, and the book concludes with a Hymn to Apollo.

The Tranflator hopes he needs 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 fome Correction a few years afterwards.

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