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For Pyle or Elis bound : but tempests toss'd
And raging billows drove us on your coast.
In dead of night an unknown port we gain'd,
Spent with fatigue, and slept secure on land. 320
But ere the rosy morn renew'd the day,
While in the embrace of pleasing sleep I lay,
Sudden, invited by auspicious gales,
They land my goods, and hoist their flying sails.
Abandon'd here, my fortune I deplore,

325 A hapless exile on a foreign shore."

Thus while he spoke, the blue-eyed maid began With pleasing smiles to view the godlike man: Then changed her form: and now, divinely bright, Jove's heavenly daughter stood confess'd to sight; Like a fair virgin in her beauty's bloom, 331 Skill'd in the illustrious labours of the loom.

“Oh still the same Ulysses !” she rejoin'd, “In useful craft successfully refined ! Artful in speech, in action, and in mind !

335 Sufficed it not, that, thy long labours pass’d, Secure thou seest thy native shore at last ? But this to me? who, like thyself, excel In arts of counsel, and dissembling well ; To me? whose wit exceeds the powers divine, 340 No less than mortals are surpass'd by thine. Know'st thou not me? who made thy life my care, Through ten years' wandering, and through ten

years' war ; Who taught thee arts, Alcinous to persuade, To raise his wonder, and engage his aid; 345 And now appear, thy treasures to protect, Conceal thy person, thy designs direct, And tell what more thou must from fate expect. Domestic woes far heavier to be borne ! The pride of fools, and slaves' insulting scorn. 350 But thou be silent, nor reveal thy state, Yield to the force of unresisted fate, And bear unmoved the wrongs of base mankind, The last, and hardest, conquest of the mind."

“ Goddess of wisdom !” Ithacus replies, 355 “ He who discerns thee must be truly wise, So seldom view'd, and ever in disguise ! When the bold Argives led their warring powers Against proud Ilion's well-defended towers, Ulysses was thy care, celestial maid !

360 Graced with thy sight, and favour'd with thy aid. But when the Trojan piles in ashes lay, And bound for Greece we plough'd the watery way, Our feet dispersed and driven from coast to coast, Thy sacred presence from that hour I lost; 365 Till I beheld thy radiant form once more, And heard thy counsels on Phæacia's shore. But, by the almighty Author of thy race, Tell me, oh tell, is this my native place? For much I fear, long tracts of land and sea 370 Divide this coast from distant Ithaca ; The sweet delusion kindly you impose, To sooth my hopes, and mitigate my woes.”

Thus he. The blue-eyed goddess thus replies : “How prone to doubt, how cautious are the wise ! Who, versed in fortune, fear the flattering show, 376 And taste not half the bliss the gods bestow. The more shall Pallas aid thy just desires, And guard the wisdom which herself inspires. Others, long absent from their native place, 380 Straight seek their home, and fly with eager pace To their wives' arms, and children's dear embrace. Not thus Ulysses : he decrees to prove His subjects' faith and queen's suspected love: 384 Who mourn'd her lord twice ten revolving years, And wastes the days in grief, the nights in tears. But Pallas knew, thy friends and navy lost, Once more 'twas given thee to behold thy coast ; Yet how could I with adverse fate engage, And mighty Neptune's unrelenting rage ? 390 Now lift thy longing eyes, while I restore The pleasing prospect of thy native shore,


Behold the port of Phorcys ! fenced around
With rocky mountains, and with olives crown'd.
Behold the gloomy grot! whose cool recess 395
Delights the Nereids of the neighbouring seas :
Whose now neglected altars in thy reign
Blush'd with the blood of sheep and oxen slain.
Behold! where Neritus the clouds divides,
And shakes the waving forests on his sides.” 400

So spake the goddess; and the prospect clear'd,
The mists dispersed, and all the coast appear'd.
The king with joy confess'd his place of birth,
And on his knees salutes his mother earth:
Then, with his suppliant hands upheld in air, 405
Thus to the sea-green sisters sends his prayer:

“ All hail! ye virgin daughters of the main ! Ye streams, beyond my hopes beheld again! To you once more your own Ulysses bows; Attend his transports, and receive his vows ! 410 If Jove prolong my days, and Pallas crown The growing virtues of my youthful son, To you shall rites divine be ever paid, And grateful offerings on your altars laid.” 414

Thus then Minerva : “From that anxious breast Dismiss those cares, and leave to Heaven the rest. Our task be now thy treasured stores to save, Deep in the close recesses of the cave: Then future means consult.” She spoke, and trod The shady grot, that brighten'd with the god. 420 The closest caverns of the grot she sought; The gold, the brass, the robes, Ulysses brought; These in the secret gloom the chief disposed ; The entrance with a rock the goddess closed.

Now, seated in the olive's sacred shade, 425 Confer the hero and the martial maid. The goddess of the azure eyes began : “Son of Laertes much-experienced man! The suitor train thy early care demand, Of that luxurious race to rid the land :


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Three years thy house their lawless rule has seen,
And proud addresses to the matchless queen.
But she thy absence mourns from day to day,
And inly bleeds, and silent wastes away :
Elusive of the bridal hour, she gives

435 Fond hopes to all, and all with hopes deceives."

To this Ulysses : “ Oh celestial maid ! Praised be thy counsel, and thy timely aid : Else had I seen my native walls in vain, Like great Atrides, just restored and slain. 440 Vouchsafe the means of vengeance to debate, And plan with all thy arts the scene of fate. Then, then be present, and my soul inspire, As when we wrapp'd Troy's heaven-built walls in

fire. Though leagued against me hundred heroes stand, Hundreds shall fall, if Pallas aid my hand.” 446

She answered: “In the dreadful day of fight, Know, I am with thee, strong in all my might. If thou but equal to thyself be found, What gasping numbers then shall press the ground ! What human victims stain the feastful floor! 451 How wide the pavements float with guilty gore! It fits thee now to wear a dark disguise, And secret walk unknown to mortal eyes. For this my hand shall wither every grace, 455 And every elegance of form and face, O'er thy smooth skin a bark of wrinkles spread, Turn hoar the auburn honours of thy head : Disfigure every limb with coarse attire, And in thy eyes extinguish all the fire ;

460 Add all the wants and the decays of life ; Estrange thee from thy own-thy son, thy wife : From the loathed object every sight shall turn, And the blind suitors their destruction scorn.

“ Go first the master of thy herds to find, 465 True to his charge, a loyal swain and kind : For thee he sighs; and to the royal heir And chaste Penelope extends his care.

At the Coracian rock he now resides,
Where Arethusa's sable water glides ;

The sable water and the copious mast
Swell the fat herd; luxuriant, large repast !
With him rest peaceful in the rural cell,
And all you ask his faithful tongue shall tell.
Me into other realnis my cares convey,

475 To Sparta, still with female beauty gay: For know to Sparta thy loved offspring came, To learn thy fortunes from the voice of Fame."

At this the father, with a father's care : “ Must he too suffer ? he, oh goddess ! bear 480 Of wanderings and of woes a wretched share ? Through the wild ocean plough the dangerous way, And leave his fortunes and his house a prey ? Why wouldst not thou, oh all-enlightened mind! Inform him certain, and protect him, kind ?" 485

To whom Minerva: “ Be thy soul at rest; And know, whatever Heaven ordains is best. To fame I sent him, to acquire renown; To other regions is his virtue known : Secure he sits, near great Atrides placed ; 490 With friendships strengthen'd, and with honours

But lo! an ambush waits his passage o'er;
Fierce foes insidious intercept the shore:
In vain; far sooner all the murderous brood
This injured land shall fatten with their blood.” 495
She spake, then touch'd him with her powerful

The skin shrunk up, and wither'd at her hand.
A swift old age o'er all his members spread ;
A sudden frost was sprinkled on his head;
Nor longer in the heavy eyeball shined

The glance divine, forth-beaming from the mind.
His robe, which spots indelible besmear,
In rags dishonest flutters with the air :
A stag's torn hide is lapp'd around his reins,
A rugged staff his trembling hand sustains ; 505

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