Obrazy na stronie

Wallows in wealth, and runs a turning maze,
That no vulgar eye can trace.
Art, instead of mounting high,
About her humble food does hovering fly;
Like the ignoble crow, rapine and noise does love:
Whilst Nature, like the sacred bird of Jove,
Now bears loud thunder; and anon with silent joy
The beauteous Phrygian boy
Defeats the strong, o'ertakes the flying prey,
And sometimes basks in th' open flames of day;
And sometimes too he shrowds
His searing wings among the clouds.

Leave, wanton Muse ! thy roving flight;
To thy loud string the well-fletcht arrow put;
Let Agrigentum be the Butt,
And Theron be the White.
And, lest the name of verse should give
Malicious men pretext to misbelieve,
By the Castalian waters swear
(A sacred oath no poets dare
To take in vain,
No more than Gods do that of Styx profane),
Swear, in no city e'er before,
A better man, or greater-soul’d, was born;
Swear, that Theron sure has sworn
No man near him should be poor;
Swear, that none e'er had such a graceful art
Fortune's free gifts as freely to impart,
With an unenvious hand, and an unbounded heart.

But in this thankless world the givers Are envied ev'n by the receivers: 'T is now the cheap and frugal fashion, Rather to hide, than pay, the obligation: Nay, 'tis much worse than so; It now an artifice does grow, Wrongs and outrages to do, Lest men should think we owe. Such monsters, Theron 1 has thy virtue found: But all the malice they profess, Thy secure honour cannot wound; For thy vast bounties are so numberless, That them or to conceal, or else to tell, Is equally impossible !

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Chromius, the son of Agesidamus, a young gentleman of Sicily, is celebrated for having won the prize of the chariot-race in the Nemean games (a solemnity instituted first to celebrate the funeral of Opheltes, as is at large described by Statius; and afterwards continued every third year, with an extraordinary conflux of all Greece, and with incredible honour to the conquerors in all the exercises there practised), woon which occasion the poet begins with the commendation of his country, which I take to have been Ortygia (an island belonging to Sicily, and a part of Syracuse, being joined to it by a bridge), though the title of the Ode call him AEtnaan Chromius, perhaps because he was made governor of that town by Hieron. From thence he falls into the praise of Chromius's person, which he draws from his great endowments of mind and body, and most especially from his hospitality, and the worthy use of his riches. He likens his beginning to that of Hercules; and, according to his usual manner of being transported with any good hint that meets him in his way, passing into a digression of Hercules, and his slaying the two serpents in his cradle, concludes the Ode with that history.

BEAUTEOUS Ortygia! the first breathing-place
Of great Alpheus' close and amorous race .
Fair Delos' sister, the child-bed
Of bright Latona, where she bred
Th' original new-moon |
Who saw'st her tender forehead ere the horns were

Who, like a gentle scion newly started out,
From Syracusa's side dost sprout!
Thee first my song does greet,
With numbers smooth and fleet
As thine own horses' airy feet,
When they young Chromius' chariot drew,
And o'er the Nemacan race triumphant flew.
Jove will approve my song and me;
Jove is concern'd in Nemea, and in thee.

With Jove my song; this happy man, Young Chromius, too, with Jove began; From hence came his success, Nor ought he therefore like it less, Since the best fame is that of happiness; For whom should we esteem above The men whom Gods do love 'T is them alone the Muse too does approve. Lo!, how it makes this victory shine O'er all the fruitful isle of Proserpine ! The torches which the mother brought When the ravish'd maid she sought, Appear'd not half so bright, But cast a weaker light, Through earth, and air, and seas, and up to th' heavenly vault.

“To thee, O Proserpine ! this isle I give,”
Said Jove, and, as he said,
Smil'd, and bent his gracious head.

“And thou, O isle !” said he, “for ever thrive,
“And keep the value of our gift alive 1
“As Heaven with stars, so let
“The country thick with towns be set,
“And numberless as stars
“Let all the towns be then
“Replenish'd thick with men,
“Wise in peace, and bold in wars!
“Of thousand glorious towns the nation,
“Of thousand glorious men each town a constella-
“tion 1
“Nor let their warlike laurel scorn
“With the Olympick olive to be worn,
“Whose gentler honours do so well the brows of

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Go to great Syracuse, my Muse, and wait
At Chromius’ hospitable gate;
'T will open wide to let thee in,
When thy lyre's voice shall but begin;
Joy, plenty, and free welcome, dwells within.
The Tyrian beds thou shalt find ready drest,
The ivory table crowded with a feast:
The table which is free for every guest,
No doubt will thee admit,
And feast more upon thee, than thou on it.
Chromius and thou art met aright,
For, as by nature thou dost write,
So he by nature loves, and does by nature fight.

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