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Then dy'd the lufty youth in manly bloom,
Hefperia's flower, and hope for times to come;
Their blood, Rome's only ftrength, diftains the fold,
Ordain'd th' affembling centuries to hold.
Numbers have oft been known, on fea and land,
To fink of old by death's deftructive hand;
Battles with multitudes have ftrown the plain,
And many perifh on the ftormy main :
Earthquakes deftroy, malignant vapours blast,
And plagues and famines lay whole nations wafte:
But juftice, fure, was never feen, till now,
To maffacre her thoufands at a blow.
Satiety of death the victors prove,

And flowly through th' incumbering ruin move:
So many fall, there fcarce is room for more,
The dying nod on thofe who fell before;
Crouding in heaps their murderers they aid,
And, by the dead, the living are o'erlaid.
Mean while the ftern dictator, from on high,.
Beholds the flaughter with a fearless eye;
Nor fighs, to think his dread commands ordain
So many thoufand wretches to be flain.
Amidft the Tiber's waves the load is thrown,
The torrent rolls the guilty burden down;
Till rifing mounds obftruct his watery way,
And carcafes the gliding veffels ftay.
But foon another ftream to aid him rofe,
Swift o'er the fields a crimfon deluge flows:
The Tufcan river fwells above his fhores,





And floating bodies to the land reftores :


Struggling at length he drives his rushing flood,
And dyes the Tyrrhene ocean round with blood.
Could deeds like thefe the glorious ftile demand
Of profperous, and faviour of the land?
Could this renown, could these atchievements build
A tomb for Sylla in the Martian field ?
Again, behold the circling woes return,
Again the curfe of civil wars we mourn;

Battles and blood, and vengeance, fhall fucceed,
And Rome once more by Roman hands fhall bleed.
Or if, for hourly thus our fears prefage,

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345 With wrath more fierce the prefent chiefs fhall rage, Mankind fhall fome unheard-of plagues deplore, And grone for miferies unknown before. Marius an end of exile only fought; Sylla to crush a hated faction fought; A larger recompence thefe leaders claim, And higher is their vaft ambition's aim : Could these be fatisfy'd with Sylla's power; Nor, all he had poffeffing, afk for more; Neither had force and impious arms employ'd, Or fought for that which guiltless each enjoy'd. Thus wept lamenting age o'er hapless Rome, Remembering evils past, and dreading those to come. But Brutus' temper fail'd not with the rest, Nor with the common weakness was oppreft; Safe and in peace he kept his manly breast. "Twas when the folemn dead of night came on, When bright Califto with her fhining fon Now half their circle round the pole had run;






When Brutus, on the bufy times intent,
To virtuous Cato's humble dwelling went:
Waking he found him, careful for the ftate,
Grieving and fearing for his country's fate;
For Rome, and wretched Rome, alone he fear'd;
Secure within himself, and for the worft prepar'd. 370
To him thus Brutus fpoke: O thou, to whom
Forfaken Virtue flies, as to her home,
Driv'n out, and by an impious age oppreft,

She finds no room on earth but Cato's breast:
There, in her one good man, fhe reigns fecure, 375
Fearless of vice, or fortune's hoftile power.

Then teach my foul, to doubt and error prone,
Teach me a refolution like thy own.

Let partial favour, hopes, or intereft guide,
By various motives, all the world befide,
To Pompey's or ambitious Cæfar's fide;
Thou, Cato, art my leader. Whether peace
And calm repofe amidst thefe ftorms shall please:
Or whether war thy ardour fhall engage,

To gratify the madness of this age,

Herd with the factious chiefs, and urge the peoples rage.
The ruffian, bankrupt, loofe adulterer,

All who the power of laws and juftice fear,
From guilt learn fpecious reafons for the war.
By ftarving want and wickednefs prepar'd,
Wifely they arm for fafety and reward.


But, oh what caufe, what reafon, canft thou find?
Art thou to arms for love of arms inclin'd?

"Haft thou the manners of this age withstood,

And for fo many years been fingly good,
To be repay'd with civil wars and blood?
Let thofe to vice inur'd for arms prepare,
In thee 'twill be impiety to dare;

Preferve at least, ye gods, thefe hands from war.
Nor do thou meanly with the rabble join,
Nor grace their cause with fuch an arm as thine.
To thee, the fortune of the fatal field
Inclining, unaufpicious fame fhall yield;
Each to thy fword fhall prefs, and wish to' be
Imputed as thy crime, and charg'd on thee.
Happy thou wert, if with retirement blest,
Which noise and faction never fhould moleft,
Nor break the facred quiet of thy breast;
Where harmony and order ne'er should ceafe,
But every day should take its turn in peace.
So, in eternal steddy motion, roll

The radiant spheres around the starry pole :
Fierce lightnings, meteors, and the winter's storm,
Earth and the face of lower heaven deform,




Whilft all by nature's laws is calm above;

No tempeft rages in the court of Jove.
Light particles and idle atoms fly,


Tofs'd by the winds, and scatter'd round the sky;
While the more folid parts the force refift,

And fix'd and ftable on the centre reft.

Cæfar fhall hear with joy, that thou art join'd


With fighting factions, to disturb mankind : Though fworn his foe, he fhall applaud thy choice, And think his wicked war approv'd by Cato's voice.

See !

See! how to fwell their mighty leader's ftate,
The confuls and the fervile fenate wait:
Ev'n Cato's felf to Pompey's yoke muft bow,
And all mankind are flaves but Cæfar now.
If war, however, be at laft our doom,
If we must arm for Liberty and Rome:
While undecided yet their fate depends, an
Cæfar and Pompey are alike.
my friends;20
'Which party I fhall choose, is yet to know,
That let the war decide;
who conquers is
Thus spoke the youth.



my foe. When Cato thus expreft 435

The facred counfels of his inmoft breast:

Brutus with thee, I own the crime is great.;
With thee, this impious civil war I hate ;
But Virtue blindly follows, led by Fate.
Answer yourselves, ye gods, and fet me free;
If I am guilty, 'tis by your decree.

fair lamps above fhould lose their light,
And leave the wretched world in endless night;
If Chaos fhould in heaven and earth prevail,
And univerfal nature's frame fhould fail :
What Stoic would not the misfortune share,
And think that defolation worth his care?
Princes and nations whom wide feas divide,
Where other stars far diftant heavens do guide,
Have brought their enfigns to the Roman fide.
Forbid it, gods! when barbarous Scythians come
From their cold north, to prop declining Rome,
That I fhould fee her fall, and fit fecure at home.
As fome unhappy fire by death undone,
Robb'd of his age's joy, his only fon,





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