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ARGU M E N T.
THE ARRIVAL OF ULYSSES IN ITHACA.
ULYSSES takes his leave of Alcinous and Arete,
and embarks in the evening. Next morning the Thip arrives at Ithaca ; where the sailors, as Ulysses is yet Neeping, lay him on the shore with all his treasures. On their return, Neptune changes their thip into a rock. In the mean time Ulysses, awaking, knows not his native Ithaca, by reason of a mist which Pallas had cast round him. He breaks into loud lamentations; till the Goddess, appearing to him in the form of a shepherd, discovers the country to him, and points out the particular places, He then tells a 'feigned story of his adventures, upon which she manifests herself, and they consult together of the measures to be taken to destroy the suitors. To conceal his return, and disguise his person the more effectually, the changes him into the figure of an old beggar.
E ceas'd ; but left so pleasing on their ear
, to hear.
A pause of filence hush'd the Mady rooms :
15 Large, and expressive of the public love : Each peer a tripod, each a vase bestow, A general tribute, which the state fall owe.
This sentence pleas'd : then all their steps addrest To separate mansions, and retir'd to rest.
Now did the rofy-finger'd morn arise, And thed her facred light along the fkies.
HOMER. Down to the haven and the ships in hafte They bore the treasures, and in safety plac'd. The king himself the vases rang’d with care :
25 Then bade his followers to the feast repair. A victim ox beneath the sacred hand Of great Alcinous falls, and stains the fand. To Jove th' Eternal (Power above all Powers ! Who wings the winds, and darkens Heaven with
fhowers) The fames ascend : till evening they prolong Thy rites, more sacred made by heavenly song : For in the midst, with public honours gracid, 'The lyre divine, Demodocus! was plac'd; All, but Ulysses, heard with fix'd delight: 35 He sate, and ey'd the sun, and with'd the night; Slow seem'd the sun to move, the hours to roll, His native home deep-imag‘d in his soul. As the tir'd ploughman spent with stubborn toil, Whose oxen long have torn the furrow'd soil, 40 Sees with delight the sun's declining ray, When home with feeble knees, he bends his way To late repast (the day's hard labour done) : So to Ulyses welcome set the fun. Then instant to Alcinous and the rest (The Scherian states) he turn’d, and thus addrest : O thou, the first in merit and command !
peers and princes of the land ! May every joy, be yours ! nor this the least, When due libation shall have crown'd the feast, Safe to my home to send your happy guest.
Complete are now the bounties you have given,
His words, well weigh'd, the general voice approv'd
The luscious wine th' obedient herald brought; Around the manfion flow'd the purple draught: Each from his feat to each immortal pours, 70 Whom glory circles in th’ Olympian bowers. Ulysses sole with air majestic stands, The bowl presenting to Arete's hands ; Then thus: O Queen, farewell ! be still possest Of dear remembrance, blessing still and blest! 75 Till age and death shall gently call thee hence (Sure fate.of every mortal excellence !) Farewell! and joys successive ever spring To thee, to thine, the people, and the king !
Thus he; then parting prints the fandy shore 80 To the fair port; a herald march'd before,
Sent by Alcinous ; of Arete's train
Now plac'd in order, the Phæacian train Their cables loose, and launch into the main : At once they bend, and strike their equal oars, And leave the linking hills and lesening Thores. 95 While on the deck the chief in filence lies, And pleasing slumbers steal
eyes. As fiery coursers in the rapid race Urg'd by fierce drivers through the dusty space, Toss their high heads, and scour along the plain ; 100 So mounts the bounding vessel o'er the main. Back to the stern the parted billows flow, And the black ocean foams and roars below.
Thus with spread fails the winged galley flies ; Less swift an eagle cuts the liquid skies;
105 Divine Ulysses was her facred load, A man, in wistom equal to a God! Much danger, long and mighty toils, he bore, In storms by sea, and combats on the shore : All which foft sleep now bạnish'd from his breast, Wrapt in a pleasing, deep, and death-like rest.