Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

But wisely quaff the rosy wave,
Which Bacchus loves, which Bacchus g
And in the goblet, rich and deep,
Cradle our crying woes to sleep.

Rose, thou art the sweetest flower
That ever drank the amber shower;
Rose, thou art the fondest child
Of dimpled Spring, the wood-nymph wild.
Even the Gods, who walk the sky,
Are amorous of thy scented sigh.
Cupid, too, in Paphian shades,
His hair with rosy fillet braids,
When with the blushing, sister Graces,
The wanton winding dance he traces.
Then bring me, showers of roses bring,
And shed them o'er me while I sing,
Or while, great Bacchus, round thy shrine,
Wreathing my brow with rose and vine,
I lead some bright nymph through the dance,
Commingling soul with every glance.

ODE XLVI.A
Benold, the young, the rosy Spring,
Gives to the breeze her scented wing;
While virgin Graces, warm with May,
Fling roses o'er her dewy way.
The murmuring billows of the deop
Havo languish'd into sint sleep;o
And mark! the flitting sea-birds lave
Their plumes in the reflecting wave;
While cranes from hoary winter fly
To flutter in a kinder sky.
Now the genial star of day
Dissolves the murky clouds away;
And cultured field, and winding stream,"
Are freshly glittering in his beam.

ODE XLV.

Within this goblet, rich and deep,
I cradle all my woes to sleep.
Why should we breathe the sigh of fear,
Or pour the unavailing tear?
For death will never heed the sigh,
Nor soften at the tearful eye;
And eyes beat sparkle, eyes that weep,
Must all aliko be seald in sleep.
Then let us never vainly stray,
In search of thorns, from pleasure's way;'

Now the earth prolific swells
With leafy buds and flowery bells ;
Gemming shoots the olive twine,
Clusters ripe festoon the vine ;
All along the branches creeping,
Through the velvet foliage peeping,
Little infant fruits we see,
Nursing into luxury.

1 When with the blushing, sister Graces,

There is a simple and poetical description of Sp The wanton winding dance he traces.] “This swee idea Catullus's beautiful farewell to Bithynia. Carm. 44 of Love dancing with the Graces, is almost peculiar to An Barnes conjectures, in his life of our poet, that acreon."-Degen.

was written after he had returned from Athens, to I lead some bright nymph through the dance, &c.] The his paternal seat at Teos; where, in a little villa epithet BaOvkoTOS, which he gives to the nymph, is literally distance from the city, commanding a view of the "full-bosomed."

Sea and the islands, he contemplated the beauties of 9 Then let us nerer vainly stray,

and enjoyed the felicities of retirement. Vide Bai In search of thorns, from pleasure's way; &-c.) I have

Anac. Vita, xxxv. This supposition, however un thus endeavored to convey the meaning of To de Tov Blov ticated, forms a pleasing association, which renders t adavwpat; according to Regnier's paraphrase of the line : more interesting.

Chevreau says, that Gregory Nazianzenus has para; E che val, fuor della strada

somewhere this description of Spring; but I cannd Del piacere alma e gradita,

with it. See Chevreau, Euvres Melées. Vaneggiare in questa vita ?

“Compare with this ode (says Degen) the verses o * The fastidious affectation of some commentators has de- dorn, book fourth, 'der Frühling,' and book fifth, der nounced this ode as spurious. Degen pronounces the four 6 While virgin Graces, woarm with May, last lines to be the patchwork of some miserable versificator, Fling roses o'er her dewy way.) De Pauw reads, and Brunck condemns the whole ode. It appears to ine, on poda Bpvovoiv, “the roses display their graces." Thi the contrary, to be elegantly graphical; full of delicate ex uningenious; but we lose by it the beauty of the pe pressions and luxuriant imagery. The abruptness of ldc aws cation, to the boldness of which Regnier has rathe tapos pavevtos is striking and spirited, and has been imitated lously objected. rather languidly by Horace :

6 The murmuring billows of the deep Vides ut alta stet nive candidum

Have languish'd into silent sleep; &c.] It has beer Boracte

remarked, that the liquid flow of the line araluveta!

is perfectly expressive of the tranquillity which it de The imperative ide is infinitely more impressive ;-as in Shakspeare,

7 And cultured field, and winding stream, &c.] By

εργα, , "the works of men," (says Baxter,) he means But look, the morn, in russet mantle clad,

temples, and towns, which are then illaminated Walks o'er the dew of yon high eastern hill.

beams of the sun.

[blocks in formation]

1 But brandishing a rosy flask, &c.] Ackos was a kind of

Altri segua Marte fero; leathern vessel for wine, very much in use, as should seem

Che sol Bacco è 'l mio conforto. π the proverb ασκος και θυλακος, which was applied to those who were intemperate in eating and drinking. This

6 This, the preceding ode, and a few more of the same proverb is mentioned in some verses quoted by Athenæus, character, are merely chansons à boire ;—the effusions probfrom the Hesione of Alexis.

ably of the moment of conviviality, and afterwards sung, we ? The only thyrsus e'er Tu ask !) Phornutus assigns as a

may imagine, with rapture throughout Greece. But that reason for the consecration of the thyrsus to Bacchus, that interesting association, by which they always recalled the

convivial emotions that produced them, can now be little felt setariety often renders the support of a stick very necessary. • leg leares my brow entwining, &c.) “The ivy was con- phlegmatic grammarian, who sees nothing in them but dia

even by the most enthusiastic reader; and much less by a whated to Bacchus, (says Montfaucon,) because he formerly | lects and particles. kay bid under that tree, or, as others will have it, because Is leaves resemble those of the vine." Other reasons for * Who, with the sunshine of the bowl, to consecration, and the use of it in garlands at banquets, Thaws the winter of our soul-&c.] Avaros is the title may be found in Longepierre, Barnes, &c. &c.

which he gives to Bacchus in the original. It is a curious Arm ye, ern ye, men of might,

circumstance that Plutarch mistook the name of Levi among Hesten to the sanguine fight;) I have adopted the inter- the Jews for Acül, (one of the bacchanal cries,) and accordmrtation of Regnier and others :

ingly supposed that they worshipped Bacchus.

ODE L.1

When wine I quaff, before my eyes
Dreams of poetic glory rise ;-
And freshen'd by the goblet's dews,
My soul invokes the heavenly Muse.
When wine I drink, all sorrow's o'er;
I think of doubts and fears no more;
But scatter to the railing wind
Each gloomy phantom of the mind.
When I drink wine, th' ethereal boy,
Bacchus himself, partakes my joy ;
And while we dance through vernal bowers,"
Whose ev'ry breath comes fresh from flowers,
In wine he makes my senses swim,
Till the gale breathes of naught but him!

Bright shapes, of every hue and form,
Upon my kindling fancy swarm,
Till the whole world of beauty seems
To crowd into my dazzled dreams!
When thus I drink, my heart refines,
And rises as the cup declines;
Rises in the genial flow,
That none but social spirits know,
When, with young revellers, round the bowl,
The old themselves grow young in soul!"
Oh, when I drink, true joy is mine,
There's bliss in every drop of wine.
All other blessings I have known,
I scarcely dared to call my own;
But this the Fates can ne'er destroy,
Till death o'ershadows all my joy.

ODE LI.

Again I drink,-and, lo, there seems
A calmer light to fill my dreams;
The lately ruffled wreath I spread
With steadier hand around my head;
Then take the lyre, and sing “how blest
The life of him who lives at rest!"
But then comes witching wine again,
With glorious woman in its train;
And, while rich perfumes round mo rise,
That seem the breath of woman's sighs,

Fly not thus my brow of snow,
Lovely wanton! fly not so.
Though the rane of age is mine,
Though youth's brilliant flush be thino,
Still I'm doom'd to sigh for thee,
Blest, if thou couldst sigh for me!

i Faber thinks this ode spurious; but, I believe, he is Or this singular in his opinion. It has all the spirit of our author.

Indi mi mena Like the wreath which he presented in the dream, “it

Mentre lieto ebro, deliro, smells of Anacreon."

Baccho in giro The form of the original is remarkable. It is a kind of

Per la vaga aura serena. song of seven quatrain stanzas, each beginning with the line "Ότ’ εγω πιω τον οινον.

When, with young revellers, round the bowl, The first stanza alone is incomplete, consisting but of

The old themselves grow young in soul!] Subjoined to three lines.

Gail's edition of Anacreon, we find some curious letters upon “Compare with this poem (says Degen) the verses of the Oracol of the ancients, which appeared in the French Hagedorn, lib. v., der Wein,' where that divine poet has

Journals. At the opening of the Odéon in Paris, the man. wantoned in the praises of wine."

agers of that spectacle requested Professor Gail to give them ? When wine I quaff, before my eyes

some uncommon name for their retes. He suggested the Dreams of poetic glory rise;) " Anacreon is not the only questioned the propriety of the term, and addressed their

word “Thiase," which was adopted; but the literati of Paris one (says Longepierre) whom wine has inspired with poetry.

criticisms to Gail through the medium of the public prints. We find an epigram in the first book of the Anthologia, which begins thus :

5 Alberti has imitated this ode ; and Capilupus, in the fol-
Οινος του χαριεντι μεγας πελει ιππυς αοιδω, , lowing epigran, has given a version of it:-
Υδωρ δε πινων, καλον ου τεκoις επος.
If with water you fill up your glasses,

Cur, Lalage, mea vita, meos contemnis amores?
You'll never write any thing wise;

Cur fugis e nostro pulchra puella sinu ?

Ne fugias, sint sparsa licet mea tempora canis,
For wine's the true horse of Parnassus,

Inque tuo roseus fulgeat ore color.
Which carries a bard to the skies !

Aspice

intextas deceant quoque flore corollas 3 And while we dance through vernal bowers, 8-c.) If some

Candida purpureis lilia mista rosis. of the translators had observed Doctor Trapp's caution, with regard to rolvavocouv he' cv avpais, “Cave ne cælum in- Oh! why repel my soul's impassion'd vow, telligas," they would not have spoiled the simplicity of And fly, beloved maid, these longing arms ? Anacreon's fancy, by such extravagant conceptions as the Is it, that wintry time has strew'd my brow, following:

While thine are all the summer's roseate charms ?
Quand je bois, mon æil s'imagine

See the rich garland cull'd in vernal weather,
Que, dans un tourbillon plein de parfums divers,

Where the young rosebud with the lily glows,
Bacchus m'emporte dans les airs,

So, in Love's wreath we both may twine together, Rempli de sa liqueur divine.

And I the lily be, and thou the rose.

And there's an end-for ah, you know
They drink but little wine below!'

See, in yonder flowery braid,
Culld for thee, my blushing maid,"
How the rose, of orient glow,
Mingles with the lily's snow;
Mark, how sweet their tints agree,
Jast, my girl, like thee and me!

ODE LIII.

ODE LII.
Away, away, ye men of rules,
What have I to do with schools ?
They'd make me learn, they'd make me think,
But would they make me love and drink?
Teach me this, and let me swim
My soul upon the goblet's brim;
Teach me this, and let me twine
Some fond, responsive heart to mine,
For, age begins to blanch my brow,
I've time for naught but pleasure now.

WHEN I behold the festive train
Of dancing youth, I'm young again!
Memory wakes her magic trance,
And wings me lightly through the dance
Come, Cybeba, smiling maid !
Cull the flower and twine the braid;
Bid the blush of summer's rose
Burn upon my forehead's snows;$
And let me, while the wild and young
Trip the mazy dance along,
Fling my heap of years away,
And be as wild, as young, as they.
Hither haste, some cordial soul !
Help to my lips the brimming bowl!
And you shall see this hoary sage
Forget at once his locks and age.
He still can chant the festive hymn,
He still can kiss the goblet's brim ;
As deeply quaff, as largely fill,
And play the fool right nobly still.

Fly, and cool my goblet's glow
At yonder fountain's gelid flow;
I'll quaff, my boy, and calmly sink
This soul to slumber as I drink.
Soon, too soon, my jocund slave,
You'll deck your master's grassy grave ;

1 See, ir yonder flowery braid,

E m'insegni con piu rare Curd for thee, my blushing maid!) “In the same manner

Forme accorte d' involare that Anacreon pleads for the whiteness of his locks, from the

Ad amabile beltade beauty of the color in garlands, a shepherd, in Theocritus,

Il bel cinto d' onestade. endeavors to recommend his black hair:

* And there's an end--for ah, you know

They drink but little wine below 1] Thus Mainard :-
Και το ιον μελαν εστι, και α γραπτα υακινθος,
Αλλ' ερπας εν τοις στεφανοις τα πρωτα λεγονται."

La Mort nous guette ; et quand ses lois
Longepierre, Barnes, &c.

Nous ont enfermès une fois

Au sein d'une fosse profonde, 3* This is doubtless the work of a more modern poet than

Adieu bons vins et bon repas ; Anacreon; for at the period when he lived rhetoricians were

Ma science ne trouve pas not known."-Degen.

Des cabarets en l'autre monde. Though this ode is found in the Vatican manuscript, I am From Mainard, Gombauld, and De Cailly, old French much inclined to agree in this argument against its authen

poets, some of the best epigrams of the English language ticity ; for though the dawnings of the art of rhetoric might have been borrowed. already have appeared, the first who gave it any celebrity

6 Bid the blush of summer's rose was Corax of Syracuse, and he flourished in the century af

Burn upon my forehead's snows ; &c.] Licetus, in his ter Anacreon.

Hieroglyphica, quoting two of our poet's odes, where he calls Our poet anticipated the ideas of Epicurus, in his aversion

to his attendants for garlands, remarks, “Constat igitur to the labors of learning, as well as his devotion to volup-floreas coronas poetis et potantibus in symposio convenire, tousness. Ilasav salóclav yakapiou Devyete, said the philoso- non autem sapientibus et philosophiam affectantibus."—" It pber of the garden in a letter to Pythocles

appears that wreaths of flowers were adapted for poets and * Teach me this, and la me twine

revellers at banquets, but by no means became those who had Some fond responsive heart to mine.] By xpuons Appo- pretensions to wisdom and philosophy.” On this principle, &nbere, I understand some beautiful girl, in the same

in his 1520 chapter, he discovers a refinement in Virgil, demanner that Avulos is often used for wine. "Golden" is scribing the garland of the poet Silenus, as fallen off; which frequently an epithet of beauty. Thus in Virgil, " Venus distinguishes, he thinks, the divine intoxication of Silenus marea;" and in Propertius, "Cynthia aurea." Tibullus,

from that of common drunkards, who always wear their however, calls an old woman " golden."

crowns while they drink. Such is the “ labor ineptiaria The translation d'Autori Anonimi, as usual, wantons on

of commentators! mais passage of Anacreon:

He still can kiss the goblet's brim, &c.) Wine is pre

ODE LIV.
METHINKS, the pictured bull we see
Is amorous Jove—it must be he!
How fondly blest he seems to bear
That fairest of Phænician fair!
How proud he breasts the foamy tide,
And spurns the billowy surge aside!
Could any beast of vulgar vein
Undaunted thus defy the main ?
No: he descends from climes above,
He looks the God, he breathes of Jove!?

Whose breath perfumes th' Olympian bowers ;
Whose virgin blush, of chasten’d dye,
Enchants so much our mortal eye.
When pleasure's springtide season glows,
The Graces love to wreath the rose;
And Venus, in its fresh-blown leaves,
An emblem of herself perceives.
Oft hath the poet's magic tongue
The rose's fair luxuriance sung ;*
And long the Muses, heavenly maids,
Have reard it in their tuneful shades.
When, at the early glance of morn,
It sleeps upon the glittering thorn,
'Tis sweet to dare the tangled fence,
To call the timid flow'ret thence,
And wipe with tender hand away
The tear that on its blushes lay!
"Tis sweet to hold the infant stems,
Yet dropping with Aurora's gems,

ODE LV.

WHILE we invoke the wreathed spring,
Resplendent rose ! to ihee we'll sing :*

scribed by Galen, as an excellent medicine for old men: Again these longing arms infold theo,
“Quod frigidos et humoribus expletos calefaciat, &c. ;" but Again, my rose, again I hold thee.
Nature was Anacreon's physician.
There is a proverb in Eriphus, as quoted by Athenæus,

This, like most of the terms of endearment in the modern which says, "that wine makes an old man dance, whether

Latin poets, is taken from Plautus; they were vulgar and he will or not."

colloquial in his time, but are among the e.egancies of the

modern Latinists.
Λογος εστ' αρχαιος, ου κακως εχων,
Οινον λεγουσι τους γεροντας, ω πατερ,

Passeratius alludes to the ode before us, in the beginning

of his poem on the Rose :Πειθειν χορεειν ου θελοντας. . 1 "This ode is written upon a picture which represented

Carmine digna rosa est; vellem caneretur ut illam the rape of Europa."- Madame Dacier.

Teius argutâ cecinit testudine vates. It may probably have been a description of one of those * Resplendent rose! to thee we'll sing ;] I have passed coins, which the Sidonians struck off in honor of Europa,

over the line συν εταιρει αυξει μελπην, which is corrupt in this representing a woman carried across the sea by a bull. Thus original reading, and has been very little improved by the Natalis Comes, lib. viii. cap. 23. "Sidonii numismata cum

annotators. I should suppose it to be an interpolation, if it fæmina tauri dorso insidente ac mare transfretante cuderunt

were not for a line which occurs afterwards : pepe on puoi in ejus honorem.” In the little treatise upon the goddess of deywuev. Syria, attributed very falsely to Lucian, there is mention of

5 And Venus, in its f. esh-blown leaves, fc.) Bellean, in a this coin, and of a temple dedicated by the Sidonians to noto apon an old French poet, quoting the original here Astarté, whom some, it appears, confounded with Europa.

αφροδισιων τ' αθυρμα, translates it, comme les delices et The poet Moschus bas left a very beautiful idyl on the mignardises de Venus." s ory of Europa. INO: he descends from climes above,

6 Oft hath the poet's magic tongue He looks the God, he breathes of Jove !] Thus Mos

The rose's fair lururiance süng ; &c.] The following is

a fragment of the Lesbian poetess. It is cited in the romance chus Κρυψε θεον και τρεψε δεμας και γινετο ταυρος.

or Achilles Tatius, who appears to have resolved the numbers

into prose. Ει τοις ανθεσιν ηθελεν ο Ζευς επιθειναι βασιλεα,το The God forgot himself, his heaven, for love,

ροδον αν των ανθεων τβασιλευε. γης εστι κοσμος, φυτων αγλαAnd a bull's form belied th'almighty Jove.

ίσμα, οφθαλμος ανθεων, λειμωνος ερυθημα, καλλος αστραπτον. 3 This ode is a brilliant panegyric on the rose. « All an- | Ερωτος πνει, Αφροδιτην προξενει, ευειδεσι φυλλοις κομά ευκιtiquity (says Barnes) has produced nothing more beautiful." νητοις πεταλους τρυφά. το πεταλον τω Ζεφυρω γελά. From the idea of peculiar excellence, which the ancients

If Jove would give the leafy bowers attached to this flower, arose a pretty proverbial expression,

A queen for all their world of flowers, used by Aristophanes, according to Suidas, poda y cionkas,

The rose would be the choice of Jove, " You have spoken roses," a phrase somewhat similar to the

And blush, the queen of every grove. * dire des fleurettes" of the French. In the same idea of ex

Sweetest child of weeping morning, cellence originated, I doubt not, a very curious application

Gem, the vest of earth adorning, of the word sodov, for which the inquisitive reader may con

Eye of gardens, light of lawns, sult Gaulminus upon the epithalamium of our poet, where

Nursling of soft summer dawns; it is introduced in the romance of Theodorus. Muretus, in

Love's own earliest sigh it breaths, one of his elegies, calls his mistress his rose :

Beauty's brow with lustre wreaths, Jam te igitur rursus teneo, formosula, jam te

And, to young Zephyr's warm caresses,
(Quid trepidas ?) teneo; jam, rosa, te teneo. Eleg. 8.

Spreads abroad its verdant tresses,
Now I again may clasp thee, dearest,

Till, blushing with the wanton's play,
Wha: is there now, on earth, thou fearest ?

Its cheek wears e'en a richer ray!

« ForrigeFortsæt »