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Tho' all the skies, ambitious of thy fway,
Confpire to court thee from our world away;
Tho' Phœbus longs to mix his rays with thine
And in thy glories more ferenely fhine;
Tho' Jove himself no less content would be
To part his throne and share his heav'n with thee
Yet stay, great Cæfar! and vouchfafe to reign
O'er the wide earth, and o'er the watry main;
Refign to Jove his empire of the fkies,

And people heav'n with Roman deities.



The time will come, when a diviner flame
Shall warm my breaft to fing of Cæfar's fame:
Mean while permit, that my preluding Mufe
In Theban wars an humbler theme may chufe: 50
Of furious hate furviving death, the fings,
A fatal throne to two contending Kings,
And fun'ral flames, that parting wide in air
Exprefs the difcord of the fouls they bear:
Of towns difpeopled, and the wand'ring ghosts 55
Of Kings unbury'd in the wafted coafts;

When Dirce's fountain blufh'd with Grecian blood,
And Thetis, near Ifinenos' fwelling flood,
With dread beheld the rolling furges fweep,

In heaps, his flaughter'd fons into the deep. 60

Quem prius heroum Clio dabis? immodicum irae Tydea? laurigeri fubitos an vatis hiatus? Urget et hoftilem propellens caedibus amnem Turbidus Hippomedon, plorandaque bella protervi Arcados, atque alio Capaneus horrore canendus. Impia jam merita fcrutatus lumina dextra Merferat aeterna damnatum nocte pudorem Oedipodes, longaque animam fub morte tenebat. Illum indulgentem tenebris, imaeque receffu Sedis, inafpectos coelo radiifque penates Servantem, tamen affiduis circumvolat alis Saeva dies animi,fcelerumque in pectore Dirae. 75 Tunc vacuos orbes, crudum ac miferabile vitae Supplicium, oftentat coelo manibufque cruentis Pulfat inane folum, faevaque ita voce precatur: 80 Dî fontes animas, anguftaque Tartara poenis Qui regitis, tuque umbrifero Styx livida fundo, Quam video, multumque mihi confueta vocari

What Hero, Clio, wilt thou first relate? The rage of Tydeus, or the Prophet's fate? Or how with hills of flain on ev'ry fide, Hippomedon repell'd the hoftile tyde?


Or how the youth with ev'ry grace adorn'd, 65
Untimely fell, to be for ever mourn'd?
Then to fierce Capaneus thy verfe extend,
And fing with horror his prodigious end.
Now wretched Oedipus, depriv'd of fight,
Led a long death in everlasting night;
But while he dwells where not a cheerful ray
Can pierce the darkness, and abhors the day;
The clear reflecting mind prefents his fin
In frightful views, and makes it day within;
Returning thoughts in endless circles roll,
And thousand furies haunt his guilty foul,
The wretch then lifted to th' unpitying skies
Those empty orbs from whence he tore his eyes,
Whose wounds, yet fresh, with bloody hands he


While from his breast these dreadful accents broke. Ye Gods, that o'er the gloomy regions. reign, Where guilty spirits feel eternal pain;

Thou, fable Styx! whofe livid ftreams are roll'd Thro' dreary coafts, which I, tho' blind, behold:


VER. 65. Or how the Youth.] Parthenopaus.



Annue Tifiphone, perverfaque vota fecunda, 85
Si bene quid merui, fi me de matre cadentem
Fovifti gremio, et trajectum vulnere plantas
Firmafti; fi ftagna petî Cyrrhaea bicorni
Interfufa jugo, poffem cum degere falso
Contentus Polybo, trifidaeque in Phocidos arce
Longaevum implicui regem, fecuique trementis
Ora fenis, dum quaero patrem; fi Sphingos iniquae
Callidus ambages te praemonftrante refolvi ;
Si dulces furias, et lamentabile matris
Connubium gravifus inî; noctemque nefandam
Saepe tuli, natofque tibi (fcis ipfa) paravi;
Mox avidus poenae digitis cedentibus ultro
Incubui, miferaque oculos in matre reliqui: 100
Exaudi, fi digna precor, quaeque ipfa furenti
Subjiceres: orbum vifu regnifque parentem
Non regere, aut dictis moerentem flectere adorti
Quos genui, quocunque toro: quin ecce fuperbi
(Pro dolor) et noftro jamdudum funere reges,
Infultant tenebris, gemitufque odere paternos.

Tifiphone, that oft haft heard my pray'r,
Affift, if Oedipus deserve thy care!

If you receiv'd me from Jocafta's womb,


And nurs'd the hope of mischiefs yet to come: If leaving Polybus, I took my way

To Cyrrha's temple, on that fatal day,

When by the fon the trembling father dy'd,


Where the three roads the Phocian fields divide:

If I the Sphynx's riddles durft explain,



Taught by thyself to win the promis'd reign:
If wretched I, by baleful Furies led,
With monstrous mixture ftain'd my mother's bed,
For hell and thee begot an impious brood,
And with full luft those horrid joys renew'd;
Then felf-condemn'd to shades of endless night,
Forc'd from these orbs the bleeding balls of fight;
Oh hear, and aid the vengeance I require,
If worthy thee, and what thou might'st inspire!
My fons their old, unhappy fire despise,
Spoil'd of his kingdom, and depriv'd of eyes;
Guidelefs I wander, unregarded mourn,
While these exalt their fceptres o'er my urn;
These fons, ye Gods! who with flagitious pride,
Infult my darkness, and my groans deride.


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