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THUS, equal fortune holds a while the scale,
And bids the leading chiefs by turns prevail ;
In doubt the goddess, yet, their fate detains,
And keeps them for Emathia's fatal plains.
And now the setting Pleiades grew low,
The hills stood hoary in December's snow;
The solemn season was approaching near,
When other names renew'd the Faiti wear,
And double Janus leads the coming year.
The consuls, while their rods they yet remain'd,
While, yet, some shew of liberty maintain'd,
With mislives round the scatter'd fathers greet,
And in Epirus bid the senate meet.
There the great rulers of the Roman state,
In foreign seats, consulting, meanly sate.
No face of war the grave assembly wears,
But civil power in peaceful pomp appears :
The purple order to their place resort,
While waiting lictors guard the crouded court.
No faction these, nor party, leem to be,
But a full senate, legal, just, and free.
Great, as he is, here Pompey ftands confest
A private man, and one among the rest.
Their mutual groans, at length, and murmurs cease,
And every mournful found is huh'd in peace; 25
When from the consular distinguish'd throne,
Sublimely rais'd, thus Lentulus begun.
If yet our Roman virtue is the fame,
Yet worthy of the race from which we came,
And emulates our great forefathers name,
Let not our thoughts, by fad remembrance led,
.31 Bewail those captive walls from whence we fled. This time demands that to ourselves we turn, Nor, fathers, have we leisure now to mourn ; But let each early care, each honest heart,
35 Our senate's sacred dignity assert. To all around proclaim it, wide, and near,
which kings obey, and nations fear,
That only legal power of Rome, is here.
For whether to the Northern Bear we go,
Where pale she glitters o’er eternal snow;
Or whether in those sultry climes we burn,
Where night and day with equal hours return;
The world shall still acknowledge us its head,
And empire follow wheresoe'er we lead.
When Gallic fames the burning city felt,
At Veiæ Rome with her Camillus dwelt.
Beneath forsaken roofs proud Cæsar reigns,
Our vacant courts, and filent laws constrains;
While Naves obedient to his tyrant will,
Oatlaws, and profligates, his senate fill;
With him a banilh'd guilty croud appear,
All that are just and innocent are here,
Dispers’d by war, though guiltless of its crimes,
Our order yielded to these impious times ; -55
At length returning each from his retreat,
In happy hour the scatter'd members meet.
The gods and fortune greet us on the way,
And with the world loft Italy repay.
Upon Illyria's favourable coaft,
60 Vulteius with his furious band are lost;
While in bold Curio, on the Libyan plain,
One half of Cæsar's senators lie flain.
March then, ye warriors ! fecond fate's design,
And to the leading gods your ardour join,
With equal constancy to battle come,
shunn’d the foe, and left your native Rome. The period of the consuls power is near, Who yield our Fasces with the ending year : But you, ye fathers, whom we still obey,
70 Who rule mankind with undetermin'd sway, Attend the public weal, with faithful care, And bid our greatest Pompey lead the war.
In loud applause the pleas'd assembly join, And to the glorious talk the chief asign :
75 His country's fate they trust to him alone, And bid him fight Rome's battles, and his own. Next, to their friends their thanks are dealt around, And some with gifts, and some with praise are crown'd: Of these, the chief are Rhodes, by Phæbus loy’d, So And Sparta rough, in virtue's lore approv’d. Of Athens much they speak; Maffilia’s aid Is with her parent Phocis' freedom paid. Deiotarus his truth they much commend, Their still unshaken faithful Asian 'friend.
85 Brave Cotys and his valiant son they grace, With bold Rhasipolis from stormy Thrace. While gallant Juba juftly is decreed "To his paternal sceptre to succeed. And thou too, Ptolemy, (unrighteous fate!) 90 Wert rais'd unworthy to the regal state;
The crown upon thy perjur'd temples shone,
That once was borne by Philip's godlike son.
O’er Ægypt shakes the boy his cruel sword :
(Oh! that he had been only Ægypt's lord !) 95
But the dire gift more dreadful mischiefs wait,
While Lagos’ sceptre gives him Pompey's fate :
Preventing Cæsar's, and his sister's hand,
He seiz’d his parricide, and her command.
Th' assembly rose, and all on war intent
Bustle to arms, and blindly wait th’ event.
Appius alone, impatient to be taught,
With what the threatening future times were fraught,
With busy curiosity explores
The dreadful purpose of the heavenly powers. 105
To Delphos straight he flies, where long the god
In silence had possess'd his close abode ;
His oracles had long been known to cease,
And the prophetic virgin liv'd in peace.
Between the ruddy west and eastern skies,
In the mid-earth Parnassus' tops arise :
To Phæbus, and the chearful god of wine,
Sacred in common stands the hill divine.
Still as the third revolving year comes round,.
The Mænades, with leafy chaplets crown'd,
The double deity in solemn fongs resound.
When, o'er the world, the deluge wide was spread,
This only mountain rear'd his lofty head ;
One rising rock, preserv'd, a bound was given,
Between the vasty deep, and ambient heaven.
Here, to revenge long-vex'd Latona's pain,
Python by infant Pæan's darts was lain,
While yet the realm was held by Themis' righteous
But when the god perceiv’d, how from below
The conscious caves diviner breathings blow, 125
How vapours could unfold th’ enquirer's doom,
And talking winds could speak of things to come;
Deep in the hollows plunging he retir'd,
There, with foretelling fury first inspir’d,
From thence the prophet`s art and honours he acquir'd.
So runs the tale. And oh! what god indeed 131
Within this glooiny cavern's depth is hid ?
power divine forsakes the heaven's fair light,
To dwell with earth, and everlasting night?
What is this fpirit, potent, wise, and great, 135
Who deigns to make a mortal frame his feat;
Who the long chain of secret causes knows,
Whose oracles the years to come disclose ;
Who through eternity at once foresees,
And tells that fate which he himself decrees?
Part of that soul, perhaps, which moves in all,
Whose energy informs the pendent ball,
Through this dark passage seeks the realms above,
And strives to re-unite itself to Jove.
Whate'er the Dæmon, when he stands confest 145
Within his raging priestess' panting bieast,
Dreadful his godhead from the virgin breaks,
And thundering from her foamy mouth he speaks.