The Iliad Of Homer: Translated Into English Blank Verse: Book XIV.

A poem by William Cowper

Argument Of The Fourteenth Book.


Agamemnon and the other wounded Chiefs taking Nestor with them, visit the battle. Juno having borrowed the Cestus of Venus, first engages the assistance of Sleep, then hastens to Ida to inveigle Jove. She prevails. Jove sleeps; and Neptune takes that opportunity to succor the Grecians.



Nor was that cry by Nestor unperceived
Though drinking, who in words wing'd with surprise
The son of Æsculapius thus address'd.
Divine Machaon! think what this may bode.
The cry of our young warriors at the ships
Grows louder; sitting here, the sable wine
Quaff thou, while bright-hair'd Hecamede warms
A bath, to cleanse thy crimson stains away.
I from yon eminence will learn the cause.
So saying, he took a shield radiant with brass
There lying in the tent, the shield well-forged
Of valiant Thrasymedes, his own son
(For he had borne to fight his father's shield)
And arming next his hand with a keen lance
Stood forth before the tent. Thence soon he saw
Foul deeds and strange, the Grecian host confused,
Their broken ranks flying before the host
Of Ilium, and the rampart overthrown.
As when the wide sea, darken'd over all
Its silent flood, forebodes shrill winds to blow,
The doubtful waves roll yet to neither side,
Till swept at length by a decisive gale;[1]
So stood the senior, with distressful doubts
Conflicting anxious, whether first to seek
The Grecian host, or Agamemnon's self
The sovereign, and at length that course preferr'd.
Meantime with mutual carnage they the field
Spread far and wide, and by spears double-edged
Smitten, and by the sword their corselets rang.
The royal Chiefs ascending from the fleet,
Ulysses, Diomede, and Atreus' son
Imperial Agamemnon, who had each
Bled in the battle, met him on his way.
For from the war remote they had updrawn
Their galleys on the shore of the gray Deep,
The foremost to the plain, and at the sterns
Of that exterior line had built the wall.
For, spacious though it were, the shore alone
That fleet sufficed not, incommoding much
The people; wherefore they had ranged the ships
Line above line gradual, and the bay
Between both promontories, all was fill'd.
They, therefore, curious to survey the fight,
Came forth together, leaning on the spear,
When Nestor met them; heavy were their hearts,
And at the sight of him still more alarm'd,
Whom royal Agamemnon thus bespake.
Neleian Nestor, glory of the Greeks!
What moved thee to forsake yon bloody field,
And urged thee hither? Cause I see of fear,
Lest furious Hector even now his threat
Among the Trojans publish'd, verify,
That he would never enter Ilium more
Till he had burn'd our fleet, and slain ourselves.
So threaten'd Hector, and shall now perform.
Alas! alas! the Achaians brazen-greaved
All, like Achilles, have deserted me
Resentful, and decline their fleet's defence.
To whom Gerenian Nestor thus replied.
Those threats are verified; nor Jove himself
The Thunderer can disappoint them now;
For our chief strength in which we trusted most
That it should guard impregnably secure
Our navy and ourselves, the wall hath fallen.
Hence all this conflict by our host sustain'd
Among the ships; nor could thy keenest sight
Inform thee where in the Achaian camp
Confusion most prevails, such deaths are dealt
Promiscuous, and the cry ascends to heaven.
But come--consult we on the sum of all,
If counsel yet may profit. As for you,
Ye shall have exhortation none from me
To seek the fight; the wounded have excuse.
Whom Agamemnon answer'd, King of men.
Ah Nestor! if beneath our very sterns
The battle rage, if neither trench nor wall
Constructed with such labor, and supposed
Of strength to guard impregnably secure
Our navy and ourselves, avail us aught,
It is because almighty Jove hath will'd
That the Achaian host should perish here
Inglorious, from their country far remote.
When he vouchsafed assistance to the Greeks,
I knew it well; and now, not less I know
That high as the immortal Gods he lifts
Our foes to glory, and depresses us.
Haste therefore all, and act as I advise.
Our ships--all those that nearest skirt the Deep,
Launch we into the sacred flood, and moor
With anchors safely, till o'ershadowing night
(If night itself may save us) shall arrive.
Then may we launch the rest; for I no shame
Account it, even by 'vantage of the night
To fly destruction. Wiser him I deem
Who 'scapes his foe, than whom his foe enthralls.
But him Ulysses, frowning stern, reproved.
What word, Atrides, now hath pass'd thy lips?
Counsellor of despair! thou should'st command
(And would to heaven thou didst) a different host,
Some dastard race, not ours; whom Jove ordains
From youth to hoary age to weave the web
Of toilsome warfare, till we perish all.
Wilt thou the spacious city thus renounce
For which such numerous woes we have endured?
Hush! lest some other hear; it is a word
Which no man qualified by years mature
To speak discreetly, no man bearing rule
O'er such a people as confess thy sway,
Should suffer to contaminate his lips.
I from my soul condemn thee, and condemn
Thy counsel, who persuad'st us in the heat
Of battle terrible as this, to launch
Our fleet into the waves, that we may give
Our too successful foes their full desire,
And that our own prepondering scale
May plunge us past all hope; for while they draw
Their galleys down, the Grecians shall but ill
Sustain the fight, seaward will cast their eyes
And shun the battle, bent on flight alone.
Then, shall they rue thy counsel, King of men!
To whom the imperial leader of the Greeks.
Thy sharp reproof, Ulysses, hath my soul
Pierced deeply. Yet I gave no such command
That the Achaians should their galleys launch,
Would they, or would they not. No. I desire
That young or old, some other may advice
More prudent give, and he shall please me well.
Then thus the gallant Diomede replied.
That man is near, and may ye but be found
Tractable, our inquiry shall be short.
Be patient each, nor chide me nor reproach
Because I am of greener years than ye,
For I am sprung from an illustrious Sire,
From Tydeus, who beneath his hill of earth
Lies now entomb'd at Thebes. Three noble sons
Were born to Portheus, who in Pleuro dwelt,
And on the heights of Calydon; the first
Agrius; the second Melas; and the third
Brave Oeneus, father of my father, famed
For virtuous qualities above the rest.
Oeneus still dwelt at home; but wandering thence
My father dwelt in Argos; so the will
Of Jove appointed, and of all the Gods.
There he espoused the daughter of the King
Adrastus, occupied a mansion rich
In all abundance; many a field possess'd
Of wheat, well-planted gardens, numerous flocks,
And was expert in spearmanship esteem'd
Past all the Grecians. I esteem'd it right
That ye should hear these things, for they are true.
Ye will not, therefore, as I were obscure
And of ignoble origin, reject
What I shall well advise. Expedience bids
That, wounded as we are, we join the host.
We will preserve due distance from the range
Of spears and arrows, lest already gall'd,
We suffer worse; but we will others urge
To combat, who have stood too long aloof,
Attentive only to their own repose.
He spake, whom all approved, and forth they went,
Imperial Agamemnon at their head.
Nor watch'd the glorious Shaker of the shores
In vain, but like a man time-worn approach'd,
And, seizing Agamemnon's better hand,
In accents wing'd the monarch thus address'd.
Atrides! now exults the vengeful heart
Of fierce Achilles, viewing at his ease
The flight and slaughter of Achaia's host;
For he is mad, and let him perish such,
And may his portion from the Gods be shame!
But as for thee, not yet the powers of heaven
Thee hate implacable; the Chiefs of Troy
Shall cover yet with cloudy dust the breadth
Of all the plain, and backward from the camp
To Ilium's gates thyself shalt see them driven.
He ceased, and shouting traversed swift the field.
Loud as nine thousand or ten thousand shout
In furious battle mingled, Neptune sent
His voice abroad, force irresistible
Infusing into every Grecian heart,
And thirst of battle not to be assuaged.
But Juno of the golden throne stood forth
On the Olympian summit, viewing thence
The field, where clear distinguishing the God
Of ocean, her own brother, sole engaged
Amid the glorious battle, glad was she.
Seeing Jove also on the topmost point
Of spring-fed Ida seated, she conceived
Hatred against him, and thenceforth began
Deliberate how best she might deceive
The Thunderer, and thus at last resolved;
Attired with skill celestial to descend
On Ida, with a hope to allure him first
Won by her beauty to a fond embrace,
Then closing fast in balmy sleep profound
His eyes, to elude his vigilance, secure.
She sought her chamber; Vulcan her own son
That chamber built. He framed the solid doors,
And to the posts fast closed them with a key
Mysterious, which, herself except, in heaven
None understood. Entering she secured
The splendid portal. First, she laved all o'er
Her beauteous body with ambrosial lymph,
Then polish'd it with richest oil divine
Of boundless fragrance;[2] oil that in the courts
Eternal only shaken, through the skies
Breathed odors, and through all the distant earth.
Her whole fair body with those sweets bedew'd,
She passed the comb through her ambrosial hair,
And braided her bright locks streaming profuse
From her immortal brows; with golden studs
She made her gorgeous mantle fast before,
Ethereal texture, labor of the hands
Of Pallas beautified with various art,
And braced it with a zone fringed all around
A hundred fold; her pendants triple-gemm'd
Luminous, graceful, in her ears she hung,
And covering all her glories with a veil
Sun-bright, new-woven, bound to her fair feet
Her sandals elegant. Thus full attired,
In all her ornaments, she issued forth,
And beckoning Venus from the other powers
Of heaven apart, the Goddess thus bespake.
Daughter beloved! shall I obtain my suit,
Or wilt thou thwart me, angry that I aid
The Grecians, while thine aid is given to Troy?
To whom Jove's daughter Venus thus replied.
What would majestic Juno, daughter dread
Of Saturn, sire of Jove? I feel a mind
Disposed to gratify thee, if thou ask
Things possible, and possible to me.
Then thus with wiles veiling her deep design
Imperial Juno. Give me those desires,
That love-enkindling power by which thou sway'st
Immortal hearts and mortal, all alike;
For to the green earth's utmost bounds I go,
To visit there the parent of the Gods,
Oceanus, and Tethys his espoused,
Mother of all. They kindly from the hands
Of Rhea took, and with parental care
Sustain'd and cherish'd me, what time from heaven
The Thunderer hurled down Saturn, and beneath
The earth fast bound him and the barren Deep.
Them go I now to visit, and their feuds
Innumerable to compose; for long
They have from conjugal embrace abstain'd
Through mutual wrath, whom by persuasive speech
Might I restore into each other's arms,
They would for ever love me and revere.
Her, foam-born Venus then, Goddess of smiles,
Thus answer'd. Thy request, who in the arms
Of Jove reposest the omnipotent,
Nor just it were nor seemly to refuse.
So saying, the cincture from her breast she loosed
Embroider'd, various, her all-charming zone.
It was an ambush of sweet snares, replete
With love, desire, soft intercourse of hearts,
And music of resistless whisper'd sounds
That from the wisest steal their best resolves;
She placed it in her hands and thus she said.
Take this--this girdle fraught with every charm.
Hide this within thy bosom, and return,
Whate'er thy purpose, mistress of it all.
She spake; imperial Juno smiled, and still
Smiling complacent, bosom'd safe the zone.
Then Venus to her father's court return'd,
And Juno, starting from the Olympian height,
O'erflew Pieria and the lovely plains
Of broad Emathia; soaring thence she swept
The snow-clad summits of the Thracian hills
Steed-famed, nor printed, as she passed, the soil.
From Athos o'er the foaming billows borne
She came to Lemnos, city and abode
Of noble Thoas, and there meeting Sleep,
Brother of Death, she press'd his hand, and said,
Sleep, over all, both Gods and men, supreme!
If ever thou hast heard, hear also now
My suit; I will be grateful evermore.
Seal for me fast the radiant eyes of Jove
In the instant of his gratified desire.
Thy recompense shall be a throne of gold,
Bright, incorruptible; my limping son,
Vulcan, shall fashion it himself with art
Laborious, and, beneath, shall place a stool[3]
For thy fair feet, at the convivial board.
Then answer thus the tranquil Sleep returned
Great Saturn's daughter, awe-inspiring Queen!
All other of the everlasting Gods
I could with ease make slumber, even the streams
Of Ocean, Sire of all.[4] Not so the King
The son of Saturn: him, unless himself
Give me command, I dare not lull to rest,
Or even approach him, taught as I have been
Already in the school of thy commands
That wisdom. I forget not yet the day
When, Troy laid waste, that valiant son[5] of his
Sail'd homeward: then my influence I diffused
Soft o'er the sovereign intellect of Jove;
While thou, against the Hero plotting harm,
Didst rouse the billows with tempestuous blasts,
And separating him from all his friend,
Brought'st him to populous Cos. Then Jove awoke,
And, hurling in his wrath the Gods about,
Sought chiefly me, whom far below all ken
He had from heaven cast down into the Deep,
But Night, resistless vanquisher of all,
Both Gods and men, preserved me; for to her
I fled for refuge. So the Thunderer cool'd,
Though sore displeased, and spared me through a fear
To violate the peaceful sway of Night.[6]
And thou wouldst now embroil me yet again!
To whom majestic Juno thus replied.
Ah, wherefore, Sleep! shouldst thou indulge a fear
So groundless? Chase it from thy mind afar.
Think'st thou the Thunderer as intent to serve
The Trojans, and as jealous in their cause
As erst for Hercules, his genuine son?
Come then, and I will bless thee with a bride;
One of the younger Graces shall be thine,
Pasithea, day by day still thy desire.
She spake; Sleep heard delighted, and replied.
By the inviolable Stygian flood
Swear to me; lay thy right hand on the glebe
All-teeming, lay thy other on the face
Of the flat sea, that all the Immortal Powers
Who compass Saturn in the nether realms
May witness, that thou givest me for a bride
The younger Grace whom thou hast named, divine
Pasithea, day by day still my desire.
He said, nor beauteous Juno not complied,
But sware, by name invoking all the powers
Titanian call'd who in the lowest gulf
Dwell under Tartarus, omitting none.
Her oath with solemn ceremonial sworn,
Together forth they went; Lemnos they left
And Imbrus, city of Thrace, and in dark clouds
Mantled, with gliding ease swam through the air
To Ida's mount with rilling waters vein'd,
Parent of savage beasts; at Lectos[7] first
They quitted Ocean, overpassing high
The dry land, while beneath their feet the woods
Their spiry summits waved. There, unperceived
By Jove, Sleep mounted Ida's loftiest pine
Of growth that pierced the sky, and hidden sat
Secure by its expanded boughs, the bird
Shrill-voiced resembling in the mountains seen,[8]
Chalcis in heaven, on earth Cymindis named.
But Juno swift to Gargarus the top
Of Ida, soar'd, and there Jove saw his spouse.
--Saw her--and in his breast the same love felt
Rekindled vehement, which had of old
Join'd them, when, by their parents unperceived,
They stole aside, and snatch'd their first embrace.
Soon he accosted her, and thus inquired.
Juno! what region seeking hast thou left
The Olympian summit, and hast here arrived
With neither steed nor chariot in thy train?
To whom majestic Juno thus replied
Dissembling. To the green earth's end I go,
To visit there the parent of the Gods
Oceanus, and Tethys his espoused,
Mother of all. They kindly from the hands
Of Rhea took, and with parental care
Sustain'd and cherish'd me;[9] to them I haste
Their feuds innumerable to compose,
Who disunited by intestine strife
Long time, from conjugal embrace abstain.
My steeds, that lightly over dank and dry
Shall bear me, at the rooted base I left
Of Ida river-vein'd. But for thy sake
From the Olympian summit I arrive,
Lest journeying remote to the abode
Of Ocean, and with no consent of thine
Entreated first, I should, perchance, offend.
To whom the cloud-assembler God replied.
Juno! thy journey thither may be made
Hereafter. Let us turn to dalliance now.
For never Goddess pour'd, nor woman yet
So full a tide of love into my breast;
I never loved Ixion's consort thus
Who bore Pirithoüs, wise as we in heaven;
Nor sweet Acrisian Danäe, from whom
Sprang Perseus, noblest of the race of man;
Nor Phoenix' daughter fair,[10] of whom were born
Minos unmatch'd but by the powers above,
And Rhadamanthus; nor yet Semele,
Nor yet Alcmena, who in Thebes produced
The valiant Hercules; and though my son
By Semele were Bacchus, joy of man;
Nor Ceres golden-hair'd, nor high-enthroned
Latona in the skies, no--nor thyself
As now I love thee, and my soul perceive
O'erwhelm'd with sweetness of intense desire.
Then thus majestic Juno her reply
Framed artful. Oh unreasonable haste!
What speaks the Thunderer? If on Ida's heights.
Where all is open and to view exposed
Thou wilt that we embrace, what must betide,
Should any of the everlasting Gods
Observe us, and declare it to the rest?
Never could I, arising, seek again,
Thy mansion, so unseemly were the deed.
But if thy inclinations that way tend,
Thou hast a chamber; it is Vulcan's work,
Our son's; he framed and fitted to its posts
The solid portal; thither let us his,
And there repose, since such thy pleasure seems.
To whom the cloud-assembler Deity.
Fear thou not, Juno, lest the eye of man
Or of a God discern us; at my word
A golden cloud shall fold us so around,
That not the Sun himself shall through that veil
Discover aught, though keenest-eyed of all.
So spake the son of Saturn, and his spouse
Fast lock'd within his arms. Beneath them earth
With sudden herbage teem'd; at once upsprang
The crocus soft, the lotus bathed in dew,
And the crisp hyacinth with clustering bells;
Thick was their growth, and high above the ground
Upbore them. On that flowery couch they lay,
Invested with a golden cloud that shed
Bright dew-drops all around.[11] His heart at ease,
There lay the Sire of all, by Sleep and Love
Vanquish'd on lofty Gargarus, his spouse
Constraining still with amorous embrace.
Then, gentle Sleep to the Achaian camp
Sped swift away, with tidings for the ear
Of earth-encircler Neptune charged; him soon
He found, and in wing'd accents thus began.
Now Neptune, yield the Greeks effectual aid,
And, while the moment lasts of Jove's repose,
Make victory theirs; for him in slumbers soft
I have involved, while Juno by deceit
Prevailing, lured him with the bait of love.
He said, and swift departed to his task
Among the nations; but his tidings urged
Neptune with still more ardor to assist
The Danaï; he leap'd into the van
Afar, and thus exhorted them aloud.
Oh Argives! yield we yet again the day
To Priameian Hector? Shall he seize
Our ships, and make the glory all his own?
Such is his expectation, so he vaunts,
For that Achilles leaves not yet his camp,
Resentful; but of him small need, I judge,
Should here be felt, could once the rest be roused
To mutual aid. Act, then, as I advise.
The best and broadest bucklers of the host,
And brightest helmets put we on, and arm'd
With longest spears, advance; myself will lead;
And trust me, furious though he be, the son
Of Priam flies. Ye then who feel your hearts
Undaunted, but are arm'd with smaller shields,
Them give to those who fear, and in exchange
Their stronger shields and broader take yourselves.
So he, whom, unreluctant, all obey'd.
Then, wounded as they were, themselves the Kings,
Tydides, Agamemnon and Ulysses
Marshall'd the warriors, and from rank to rank
Made just exchange of arms, giving the best
To the best warriors, to the worse, the worst.
And now in brazen armor all array'd
Refulgent on they moved, by Neptune led
With firm hand grasping his long-bladed sword
Keen as Jove's bolt; with him may none contend
In dreadful fight; but fear chains every arm.
Opposite, Priameian Hector ranged
His Trojans; then they stretch'd the bloody cord
Of conflict tight, Neptune coerulean-hair'd,
And Hector, pride of Ilium; one, the Greeks
Supporting firm, and one, the powers of Troy;
A sea-flood dash'd the galleys, and the hosts
Join'd clamorous. Not so the billows roar
The shores among, when Boreas' roughest blast
Sweeps landward from the main the towering surge;
Not so, devouring fire among the trees
That clothe the mountain, when the sheeted flames
Ascending wrap the forest in a blaze;
Nor howl the winds through leafy boughs of oaks
Upgrown aloft (though loudest there they rave)
With sounds so awful as were heard of Greeks
And Trojans shouting when the clash began.
At Ajax, first (for face to face they stood)
Illustrious Hector threw a spear well-aim'd,
But smote him where the belts that bore his shield
And falchion cross'd each other on his breast.
The double guard preserved him unannoy'd.
Indignant that his spear had bootless flown,
Yet fearing death at hand, the Trojan Chief
Toward the phalanx of his friends retired.
But, as he went, huge Ajax with a stone
Of those which propp'd the ships (for numerous such
Lay rolling at the feet of those who fought)
Assail'd him. Twirling like a top it pass'd
The shield of Hector, near the neck his breast
Struck full, then plough'd circuitous the dust.
As when Jove's arm omnipotent an oak
Prostrates uprooted on the plain, a fume
Rises sulphureous from the riven trunk,
And if, perchance, some traveller nigh at hand
See it, he trembles at the bolt of Jove,
So fell the might of Hector, to the earth
Smitten at once. Down dropp'd his idle spear,
And with his helmet and his shield himself
Also; loud thunder'd all his gorgeous arms.
Swift flew the Grecians shouting to the skies,
And showering darts, to drag his body thence,
But neither spear of theirs nor shaft could harm
The fallen leader, with such instant aid
His princely friends encircled him around,
Sarpedon, Lycian Chief, Glaucus the brave,
Polydamas, Æneas, and renown'd
Agenor; neither tardy were the rest,
But with round shields all shelter'd Hector fallen.
Him soon uplifted from the plain his friends
Bore thence, till where his fiery coursers stood,
And splendid chariot in the rear, they came,
Then Troy-ward drove him groaning as he went.
Ere long arriving at the pleasant stream
Of eddied Xanthus, progeny of Jove,
They laid him on the bank, and on his face
Pour'd water; he, reviving, upward gazed,
And seated on his hams black blood disgorged
Coagulate, but soon relapsing, fell
Supine, his eyes with pitchy darkness veil'd,
And all his powers still torpid by the blow.
Then, seeing Hector borne away, the Greeks
Rush'd fiercer on, all mindful of the fight,
And far before the rest, Ajax the swift,
The Oïlean Chief, with pointed spear
On Satnius springing, pierced him. Him a nymph
A Naiad, bore to Enops, while his herd
Feeding, on Satnio's grassy verge he stray'd.
But Oïliades the spear-renown'd
Approaching, pierced his flank; supine he fell,
And fiery contest for the dead arose.
In vengeance of his fall, spear-shaking Chief
The son of Panthus into fight advanced
Polydamas, who Prothöenor pierced
Offspring of Areïlocus, and urged
Through his right shoulder sheer the stormy lance.
He, prostrate, clench'd the dust, and with loud voice
Polydamas exulted at his fall.
Yon spear, methinks, hurl'd from the warlike hand
Of Panthus' noble son, flew not in vain,
But some Greek hath it, purposing, I judge,
To lean on it in his descent to hell.
So he, whose vaunt the Greeks indignant heard.
But most indignant, Ajax, offspring bold
Of Telamon, to whom he nearest fell.
He, quick, at the retiring conqueror cast
His radiant spear; Polydamas the stroke
Shunn'd, starting sideward; but Antenor's son
Archilochus the mortal dint received,
Death-destined by the Gods; where neck and spine
Unite, both tendons he dissever'd wide,
And, ere his knees, his nostrils met the ground.
Then Ajax in his turn vaunting aloud
Against renown'd Polydamas, exclaim'd.
Speak now the truth, Polydamas, and weigh
My question well. His life whom I have slain
Makes it not compensation for the loss
Of Prothöenor's life! To me he seems
Nor base himself; nor yet of base descent,
But brother of Atenor steed-renown'd,
Or else perchance his son; for in my eyes
Antenor's lineage he resembles most.
So he, well knowing him, and sorrow seized
Each Trojan heart. Then Acamas around
His brother stalking, wounded with his spear
Boeotian Promachus, who by the feet
Dragg'd off the slain. Acamas in his fall
Aloud exulted with a boundless joy.
Vain-glorious Argives, archers inexpert!
War's toil and trouble are not ours alone,
But ye shall perish also; mark the man--
How sound he sleeps tamed by my conquering arm,
Your fellow-warrior Promachus! the debt
Of vengeance on my brother's dear behalf
Demanded quick discharge; well may the wish
Of every dying warrior be to leave
A brother living to avenge his fall.
He ended, whom the Greeks indignant heard,
But chiefly brave Peneleus; swift he rush'd
On Acamas; but from before the force
Of King Peneleus Acamas retired,
And, in his stead, Ilioneus he pierced,
Offspring of Phorbas, rich in flocks; and blest
By Mercury with such abundant wealth
As other Trojan none, nor child to him
His spouse had borne, Ilioneus except.
Him close beneath the brow to his eye-roots
Piercing, he push'd the pupil from its seat,
And through his eye and through his poll the spear
Urged furious. He down-sitting on the earth
Both hands extended; but, his glittering blade
Forth-drawn, Peneleus through his middle neck
Enforced it; head and helmet to the ground
He lopp'd together, with the lance infixt
Still in his eye; then like a poppy's head
The crimson trophy lifting, in the ears
He vaunted loud of Ilium's host, and cried.
Go, Trojans! be my messengers! Inform
The parents of Ilioneus the brave
That they may mourn their son through all their house,
For so the wife of Alegenor's son
Boeotian Promachus must him bewail,
Nor shall she welcome his return with smiles
Of joy affectionate, when from the shores
Of Troy the fleet shall bear us Grecians home.
He said; fear whiten'd every Trojan cheek,
And every Trojan eye with earnest look
Inquired a refuge from impending fate.
Say now, ye Muses, blest inhabitants
Of the Olympian realms! what Grecian first
Fill'd his victorious hand with armor stript
From slaughter'd Trojans, after Ocean's God
Had, interposing, changed the battle's course?
First, Telamonian Ajax Hyrtius slew,
Undaunted leader of the Mysian band.
Phalces and Mermerus their arms resign'd
To young Antilochus; Hyppotion fell
And Morys by Meriones; the shafts
Right-aim'd of Teucer to the shades dismiss'd
Prothöus and Periphetes, and the prince
Of Sparta, Menelaus, in his flank
Pierced Hyperenor; on his entrails prey'd
The hungry steel, and, through the gaping wound
Expell'd, his spirit flew; night veil'd his eyes.
But Ajax Oïliades the swift
Slew most; him none could equal in pursuit
Of tremblers scatter'd by the frown of Jove.

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