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Theyellow bees humm'd sweetly in the shade,
Such is the ftation allotted to bees (by the Mantuan bard, in the language of his juftly-admired tranflator WARTON) or, (as the tranflator here paraphrases EURIPIDES)
the mead o'erfpread With living tints, where ne'er the ruftic fwain Prefum'd his flocks to pafture, or the Scythe Its fplendor glanc'd thro' morning's rofy dew; But where the vernal bee o'er fweets unfhorn Wanders on airy wing, and fucks the flowers That love the limpid rill. See HIPPOL. 1. 73.
The generous juice, in PHOLUS' ftony cave.
The Cave of CHIRON and his hofpitality are described, at large, in the Argonaut. of ORPHEUS, line 375 and 400, &c.
See JUVENAL, alluding, perhaps, to this paffage in our poet.
Urna cratera capacem
Hofpes et Alcide magni Pholo.
CHIRON was the son of SATURN, according to OVID; though SUIDAS mentions him with the other Centaurs, as the offspring of IXION: He was the father of ACHILLES. By him ESCULAPIUS was inftructed in phyfic; APOLLO in mufic; and HERCULES in aftronomy.
IDYLLIUM the EIGHTH.
HE chief beauty of the eighth Idyllium, (fays WARTON) confists in the diverfity of character between the Neatherd and the Shepherd. DAPHNIS feeds oxen, and MENALCAS sheep; and the allufions of both, respect their proper business. The one never invades the other's province.
Once, DIOPHANTUS, up the breezy grove.
The Greek runs Maλa veμar (ws QavT)-certainly a corruption. PIERSON hath probably reftored the true reading-Maña ver AIO ANTE-DIOPHANTUS was a friend of THEOCRITUS, addreffed in the twenty-firft Idyllium. To the fame person the prefent Idyllium was probably infcribed. Perhaps PIERSON (notwithstanding the plausibility of a late conjecture) is equally right in reading Xgooo Taλavra, in the fame Idyllium. Dr. JORTIN, indeed, would read Xeoidea, the adjective from Xpoicos. The Ionic dialect he obferves (Xpoooo) is not often used in a Doric fong.
It is certain that the librarians often obliterated proper names, without the least shadow of authority-an argument in favor of the above reading; where the fenfe is much improved.
Their flamy locks.
Αμφω των ή την πυρροτριχω-COLLINs hath been applauded for his fine original compound epithet fiery-tressed
Whether the fiery-treffed Dane
Or Roman's felf o'erturn'd the fane, &c.
Hath it ever been obferved, that the Greek compound epithet Tuggoreixos precifely and literally correfponds with it?
Her arched eye-brows join'd..
TIBULLUS hath, alfo, celebrated the continuous eye-brow. It is certain that the ideas of beauty are, in a great measure, national'; though not in fuch a degree as fome writers have intimated. The tranflator does not recollect the place where it is afferted (though he is confident an author of distinction has faid it) that the nose of the Venus de Medicis (falling in a strait line from the forehead) would be esteemed among us a deformity. But is not the Grecian nose of Angelica Kauffman extremely beautiful, in the opinion of Englishmen ? Yet a very strong representation of the continuous eye-brow would by no means fuit our tafte, though we univerfally laugh at the abfurd notions of the Talapoins of Siam, who fhave their children's eye-brows entirely bare. The large arched eye-brows of THEOCRITUS, joining over the nofe, are much admired, to this day, by the Perfians. ANACREON, in his twenty-eighth Ode, delineates the eyebrow with a delicacy of pencil that is exquifite. The fable eye-brows of his miftrefs are finely arched; and the space that lies between their meeting fhade, is fcarcely diftinguishable. Painters attribute a variety of paffionate expreffion to the eyebrow. Agreeably to this idea, it is obferved in the English Orator,' Book the First,
Whofe eye-brow fhews emotions, which the heart
Nor ought could I reply.
Toup reads (very ingeniously) for xpov, inpor-But we ought not to deny MARTYN the merit of the fame conjecture, Ubi, 'pro winpov, forte unpov legi debet'-fays our humble Parallelift, p. 119.
Sweet is the breath of cows-the breath of fteers
This pleasing repetition hath frequently reminded the tranflator of the following delightful paffage in "Paradise Loft."
Mr. WARTON thinks MILTON had THEOCRITUs in view. Our English poet hath certainly much improved upon his original.
Sweet is the breath of morn, her rifing Sweet
But sweet, at noon, the shade embowering deep,
There is a beautiful Latin epigram on fleep, the infertion of which, in this place, needs no apology:
Somne levis, quamquam certiffima mortis imago,
Alma quies, optata veni; nam, fic, fine vitâ
Come, gentle fleep, attend thy votary's prayer,
Thefe lines do juftice to the original. They were presented to the tranflator when a school-boy, by a gentleman who has since gained a name in the literary world-Peter Pindar, efq;—but who poffeffes a genius far fuperior to the subjects that at prefent engage it. To give an English version of the above epigram, was a part of the Tranflator's evening exercife: The redoubted PETER, however, on being requested to affift him, produced the tranflation annexed in a few minutes.
That melts, my fwain, far fweeter on the ear,
Thus in the Septuagint, Cant. iv. 11.
Κηριον αποςαζουσι χειλη (ου, νυμφη. μελι και γαλα υπο την γλωσσαν σε.
IDYLLIUM the NINTH.
'HE difcriminations of character are well preferved in this Idyllium-DAPHNIS the herdfman boafts his fmooth bed compofed of fkins that belonged to his white heifers, which the fouth wind had blown down from a rock, where they were cropping the Arbutus. To this MENALCAS opposes his fleeces, the produce of his flock, which lay in great abundance, at his head and feet, in the cave. WARTON.
In the opening of the piece, there is a fine diftinctnefs. The fwains are first to see their calves fuckled, &c. This business attended to, they are to proceed to their finging. The oppofition Μοσχως βωσιν-ειραισι ταύρως is obfervable. And the repetitions TU δ' ωδάς αρχεοπςατος Ωδας αρχεο, πρατος, τυ βωκολιασδευ give an air of beautiful fimplicity to the original, which cannot preserve its effect in the most happy verfion.
The shepherd-fwain a fine wreath'd conch I gave,
It is feldom we meet with defcriptions of conchs, or any of the marine thells, in the Greek or Latin poets.
The elegant LUCRETIUS hath fome lines on the fubject:
Pingere telluris gremium, qua mollibus undis