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Such friends, he cries, deferv'd a longer date :
"But Cadmus will revenge, or fhare their fate."
Then heav'd a stone, and, rifing to the throw,
He fent it in a whirlwind at the foe:
A tower, affaulted by fo rude a stroke,
With all its lofty battlements had shook ;
But nothing here th' unwieldy rock avails,
Rebounding harmless from the plaited scales,
That, firmly join'd, preferv'd him from a wound,
With native armour crufted all around.
With more fuccefs the dart unerring flew,
Which at his back the raging warrior threw ;
Amid the plaited fcales it took its courfe,
And in the spinal marrow fpent its force.
The monfter hifs'd alond, and rag'd in vain,
And writh'd his body to and fro with pain;
And bit the fpear, and wrench'd the wood away:
The point ftill buried in the marrow lay.
And now his rage, increasing with his pain,
· Reddens his eyes, and beats in every vein;
- Churn'd in his teeth the foamy venom rofe,
Whilft from his mouth a blaft of vapours flows,
Such as th' infernal Stygian waters cast:
The plants around him wither in the blast.
Now in a maze of rings he lies enroll'd,
Now all unravel'd, and without a fold;
Now, like a torrent, with a mighty force
Bears down the foreft in his boisterous courfe.
Cadmus gave back, and on the lion's spoil
Suftain'd the shock, then fore'd him to recoil;
The pointed javelin warded off his rage : Mad with his pains, and furious to engage, The ferpent champs the steel, and bites the spear, Till blood and venom all the point befmear. But ftill the hurt he yet receiv'd was slight; For, whilft the champion with redoubled might Strikes home the javelin, his retiring foe Shrinks from the wound, and disappoints the blow. The dauntless hero ftill pursues his stroke, And preffes forward, till a knotty oak Retards his foe, and stops him in the rear; Full in his throat he plung'd the fatal spear, That in th' extended neck a paffage found, And pierc'd the folid timber through the wound. Fix'd to the reeling trunk, with many a stroke Of his huge tail, he lash'd the sturdy oak; Till, spent with toil, and labouring hard for breath, He now lay twisting in the pangs of death. Cadmus beheld him wallow in a flood Of swimming poifon, intermix'd with blood; When fuddenly a speech was heard from high, (The fpeech was heard, nor was, the speaker nigh) "Why dost thou thus with secret pleasure see, "Insulting man! what thou thyself shalt be?" Astonish'd at the voice, he stood amaz'd, And all around with inward horror gaz'd: When Pallas fwift defcending from the skies, Pallas, the guardian of the bold and wise, Bids him plow up the field, and scatter round The dragon's teeth o'er all the furrow'd ground;
Then tells the youth how to his wondering eyes
Embattled armies from the field fhould rise.
"He fows the teeth at Pallas's command,
And flings the future people from his hand.
The clods grow warm, and crumble where he fows:
And now the pointed fpears advance in rows;
Now nodding plumes appear, and shining crefts,
Now the broad fhoulders and the rifing breafts:
O'er all the field the breathing harvest swarms,
A growing host, a crop of men and arms.
So through the parting stage a figure rears
Its body up, and limb by limb appears
By juft degrees; till all the man arise,
And in his full proportion strikes the eyes.
Cadmus, furpriz'd, and startled at the fight
Of his new foes, prepar'd himself for fight:
When one cry'd out, "Forbear, fond man, forbear
"To mingle in a blind promifcuous war."
This faid, he ftruck his brother to the ground,
Himself expiring by another's wound;
Nor did the third his conquest long furvive,
Dying ere fcarce he had begun to live.
The dire example ran through all the field,
Till heaps of brothers were by brothers kill'd;
The furrows fwam in blood: and only five.
Of all the vaft increase were left alive.
Echion one, at Pallas's command,
Let fall the guiltlefs weapon from his hand;
And with the reft a peaceful treaty makes,
Whom Cadmus as his friends and partners takes ;
So founds a city on the promis'd earth,
And gives his new Boeotian empire birth.
Here Cadmus reign'd; and now one would have guefs'd ́ The royal founder in his exile.bleft:
Long did he live within his new abodes,
Ally'd by marriage to the deathless gods;
And, in a fruitful wife's embraces old,
A long increase of children's children told :
But no frail man, however great or high,
Can be concluded ble before he die.
Acteon was the first of all his race,
Who griev'd his grandfire in his borrow'd face;
Condemn'd by ftern Diana to bemoan
The branching horns, and visage not his own;
To fhun his once-lov'd dogs, to bound away,
And from their huntfman to become their prey,
And yet confider why the change was wrought,
You'll find it his misfortune, not his fault;
Or if a fault, it was the fault of chance :
For how can guilt proceed from ignorance?
THE TRANSFORMATION OF ACTÆON.
INTO A STAG.
IN a fair chace a shady mountain flood,
Well ftor'd with game, and mark'd with trails of blood.
Here did the huntsmen till the heat of day
Purfue the ftag, and load themfelves with
When thus Acteon calling to the reft :
"My friends, fays he, our fport is at the best.
The fun is high advanc'd, and downward sheds "His burning beams directly on our heads;
Then by confent abstain from further spoils, "Call off the dogs, and gather up the toils; "And ere to-morrow's fun begins his race, "Take the cool morning to renew the chace." They all confent, and in a chearful train The jolly huntfimen, loaden with the flain, Return in triumph from the fultry plain. Down in a vale with pine and cypress clad, Refresh'd with gentle winds, and brown with fhade, The chafte Diana's private haunt, there stood Full in the center of the darkfome wood A fpacious grotto, all around o'er-grown With hoary mofs, and arch'd with pumice-ftone From out its rocky clefts the waters flow, And trickling fwell into a lake below. Nature had every where fo play'd her part, That every where the feem'd to vie with art. Here the bright goddess, toil'd and chaf'd with heat, Was wont to bathe her in the cool retreat.
Here did fhe now with all her train refort,
Panting with heat, and breathlefs from the sport ;
Her armour-bearer laid her bow aside,
Some loos'd her fandals, fome her veil unty'd ;
Each bufy nymph her proper part undrest;
While Crocalè, more handy than the reft,
Gather'd her flowing hair, and in a noose
Bound it together, whilft her own hung loofe.
Five of the more ignoble fort by turns
Fetch up the water, and unlade their urns.