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Chapman, George, trans. (1559?–1634).  The Odysseys of Homer, vol. 1.  1857.



THE Gods in council sit, to call
Ulysses from Calypso’s thrall,
And order their high pleasures thus:
Grey Pallas to Telemachus
(In Ithaca) her way addrest;
And did her heavenly limbs invest
In Mentas’ likeness, that did reign
King of the Taphians, in the main
Whose rough waves near Leucadia run,
Advising wise Ulysses’ son
To seek his father, and address
His course to young Tantalides
That govern’d Sparta. Thus much said,
She shew’d she was Heaven’s martial Maid,
And vanish’d from him. Next to this,
The Banquet of the Wooers is.


The Deities sit;
The Man retired;
The Ulyssean wit
By Pallas fired.

HE man, O Muse, inform, that many a way

Wound with his wisdom to his wished stay; That wandered wondrous far, when he the town Of sacred Troy had sack’d and shivered down; The cities of a world of nations, 5 With all their manners, minds, and fashions, He saw and knew; at sea felt many woes, Much care sustained, to save from overthrows Himself and friends in their retreat for home; But so their fates he could not overcome, 10 Though much he thirsted it. O men unwise, They perish’d by their own impieties, That in their hunger’s rapine would not shun The oxen of the lofty-going Sun, Who therefore from their eyes the day bereft 15 Of safe return. These acts, in some part left, Tell us, as others, deified Seed of Jove. Now all the rest that austere death outstrove At Troy’s long siege at home safe anchor’d are, Free from the malice both of sea and war; 20 Only Ulysses is denied access To wife and home. The grace of Goddesses, The reverend nymph Calypso, did detain Him in her caves, past all the race of men Enflam’d to make him her lov’d lord and spouse. 25 And when the Gods had destin’d that his house, Which Ithaca on her rough bosom bears, (The point of time wrought out by ambient years) Should be his haven, Contention still extends Her envy to him, even amongst his friends. 30 All Gods took pity on him; only he, That girds earth in the cincture of the sea, Divine Ulysses ever did envy, And made the fix’d port of his birth to fly. But he himself solemnized a retreat 35 To th’ Æthiops, far dissunder’d in their seat, (In two parts parted, at the sun’s descent, And underneath his golden orient, The first and last of men) t’ enjoy their feast Of bulls and lambs, in hecatombs address’d; 40 At which he sat, given over to delight. The other Gods in heaven’s supremest height Were all in council met; to whom began The mighty Father both of God and man Discourse, inducing matter that inclined 45 To wise Ulysses, calling to his mind Faultful Ægisthus, who to death was done By young Orestes, Agamemnon’s son. His memory to the Immortals then Mov’d Jove thus deeply: “O how falsely men 50 Accuse us Gods as authors of their ill, When by the bane their own bad lives instil They suffer all the miseries of their states, Past our inflictions, and beyond their fates. As now Ægisthus, past his fate, did wed 55 The wife of Agamemnon, and (in dread To suffer death himself) to shun his ill, Incurred it by the loose bent of his will, In slaughtering Atrides in retreat. Which we foretold him would so hardly set 60 To his murderous purpose, sending Mercury That slaughter’d Argus, our considerate spy, To give him this charge: ‘Do not wed his wife, Nor murder him; for thou shalt buy his life With ransom of thine own, imposed on thee 65 By his Orestes, when in him shall be Atrides’ self renew’d, and but the prime Of youth’s spring put abroad, in thirst to climb His haughty father’s throne by his high acts.’ These words of Hermes wrought not into facts 70 Ægisthus’ powers; good counsel he despised, And to that good his ill is sacrificed.” Pallas, whose eyes did sparkle like the skies, Answer’d: “O Sire! Supreme of Deities, Ægisthus past his fate, and had desert 75 To warrant our infliction; and convert May all the pains such impious men inflict On innocent sufferers to revenge as strict, Their own hearts eating. But, that Ithacus, Thus never meriting, should suffer thus, 80 I deeply suffer. His more pious mind Divides him from these fortunes. Though unkind Is piety to him, giving him a fate More suffering than the most unfortunate, So long kept friendless in a sea-girt soil, 85 Where the sea’s navel is a sylvan isle, In which the Goddess dwells that doth derive Her birth from Atlas, who of all alive The motion and the fashion doth command With his wise mind, whose forces understand 90 The inmost deeps and gulfs of all the seas, Who (for his skill of things superior) stays The two steep columns that prop earth and heaven. His daughter ’tis, who holds this homeless-driven Still mourning with her; evermore profuse 95 Of soft and winning speeches, that abuse And make so languishingly, and possest With so remiss a mind her loved guest, Manage the action of his way for home. Where he, though in affection overcome, 100 In judgment yet more longs to show his hopes, His country’s smoke leap from her chimney tops, And death asks in her arms. Yet never shall Thy lov’d heart be converted on his thrall, Austere Olympius. Did not ever he, 105 In ample Troy, thy altars gratify, And Grecians’ fleet make in thy offerings swim? O Jove, why still then burns thy wrath to him?” The Cloud-assembler answer’d: “What words fly, Bold daughter, from thy pale of ivory? 110 As if I ever could cast from my care Divine Ulysses, who exceeds so far All men in wisdom, and so oft hath given To all th’ Immortals throned in ample heaven So great and sacred gifts? But his decrees, 115 That holds the earth in with his nimble knees, Stand to Ulysses’ longings so extreme, For taking from the God-foe Polypheme His only eye; a Cyclop, that excelled All other Cyclops, with whose burden swell’d 120 The nymph Thoosa, the divine increase Of Phorcys’ seed, a great God of the seas. She mix’d with Neptune in his hollow caves, And bore this Cyclop to that God of waves. For whose lost eye, th’ Earth-shaker did not kill 125 Erring Ulysses, but reserves him still In life for more death. But use we our powers, And round about us cast these cares of ours, All to discover how we may prefer His wished retreat, and Neptune make forbear 130 His stern eye to him, since no one God can, In spite of all, prevail, but ‘gainst a man.” To this, this answer made the grey-eyed Maid: “Supreme of rulers, since so well apaid The blessed Gods are all then, now, in thee, 135 To limit wise Ulysses’ misery, And that you speak as you referred to me Prescription for the means, in this sort be Their sacred order: Let us now address With utmost speed our swift Argicides, 140 To tell the nymph that bears the golden tress In th’ isle Ogygia, that ’tis our will She should not stay our loved Ulysses still, But suffer his return; and then will I To Ithaca, to make his son apply 145 His sire’s inquest the more; infusing force Into his soul, to summon the concourse Of curl’d-head Greeks to council, and deter Each wooer, that hath been the slaughterer Of his fat sheep and crooked-headed beeves, 150 From more wrong to his mother, and their leaves Take in such terms, as fit deserts so great. To Sparta then, and Pylos, where doth beat Bright Amathus, the flood, and epithet To all that kingdom, my advice shall send 155 The spirit-advanced Prince, to the pious end Of seeking his lost father, if he may Receive report from Fame where rests his stay, And make, besides, his own sucessive worth Known to the world, and set in action forth.” 160 This said, her wing’d shoes to her feet she tied, Formed all of gold, and all eternified, That on the round earth or the sea sustain’d Her ravish’d substance swift as gusts of wind. Then took she her strong lance with steel made keen, 165 Great, massy, active, that whole hosts of men, Though all heroes, conquers, if her ire Their wrongs inflame, back’d by so great a Sire. Down from Olympus’ tops she headlong dived, And swift as thought in Ithaca arriv’d, 170 Close at Ulysses’ gates; in whose first court She made her stand, and, for her breast’s support, Leaned on her iron lance; her form impress’d With Mentas’ likeness, come, as being a guest. There found she those proud wooers, that were then 175 Set on those ox-hides that themselves had slain, Before the gates, and all at dice were playing. To them the heralds, and the rest obeying, Fill’d wine and water; some, still as they play’d, And some, for solemn supper’s state, purvey’d, 180 With porous sponges, cleansing tables, serv’d With much rich feast; of which to all they kerv’d. God-like Telemachus amongst them sat, Griev’d much in mind; and in his heart begat All representment of his absent sire, 185 How, come from far-off parts, his spirits would fire With those proud wooers’ sight, with slaughter parting Their bold concourse, and to himself converting The honours they usurp’d, his own commanding. In this discourse, he first saw Pallas standing, 190 Unbidden entry; up rose, and address’d His pace right to her, angry that a guest Should stand so long at gate; and, coming near, Her right hand took, took in his own her spear, And thus saluted: “Grace to your repair, 195 Fair guest, your welcome shall be likewise fair. Enter, and, cheer’d with feast, disclose th’ intent That caused your coming.” This said, first he went, And Pallas follow’d. To a room they came, Steep, and of state; the javelin of the Dame 200 He set against a pillar vast and high, Amidst a large and bright-kept armory, Which was, besides, with woods of lances grac’d Of his grave father’s. In a throne he plac’d The man-turn’d Goddess, under which was spread 205 A carpet, rich and of deviceful thread; A footstool staying her feet; and by her chair Another seat (all garnish’d wondrous fair, To rest or sleep on in the day) he set, Far from the prease of wooers, lest at meat 210 The noise they still made might offend his guest, Disturbing him at banquet or at rest, Even to his combat with that pride of theirs, That kept no noble form in their affairs. And these he set far from them, much the rather 215 To question freely of his absent father. A table fairly-polish’d then was spread, On which a reverend officer set bread, And other servitors all sorts of meat (Salads, and flesh, such as their haste could get) 220 Serv’d with observance in. And then the sewer Pour’d water from a great and golden ewer, That from their hands t’ a silver caldron ran. Both wash’d, and seated close, the voiceful man Fetch’d cups of gold, and set by them, and round 225 Those cups with wine with all endeavour crown’d. Then rush’d in the rude wooers, themselves plac’d; The heralds water gave; the maids in haste Serv’d bread from baskets. When, of all prepar’d And set before them, the bold wooers shar’d, 230 Their pages plying their cups past the rest. But lusty wooers must do more than feast; For now, their hungers and their thirsts allay’d, They call’d for songs and dances; those, they said, Were th’ ornaments of feast. The herald straight 235 A harp, carv’d full of artificial sleight, Thrust into Phemius’, a learn’d singer’s, hand, Who, till he much was urged, on terms did stand, But, after, play’d and sung with all his art. Telemachus to Pallas then (apart, 240 His ear inclining close, that none might hear) In this sort said: “My guest, exceeding dear, Will you not sit incens’d with what I say? These are the cares these men take; feast and play. Which eas’ly they may use, because they eat, 245 Free and unpunish’d, of another’s meat; And of a man’s, whose white bones wasting lie In some far region, with th’ incessancy Of showers pour’d down upon them, lying ashore, Or in the seas wash’d naked. Who, if he wore 250 Those bones with flesh and life and industry, And these might here in Ithaca set eye On him return’d, they all would wish to be Either past other in celerity Of feet and knees, and not contend t’ exceed 255 In golden garments. But his virtues feed The fate of ill death; nor is left to me The least hope of his life’s recovery, No, not if any of the mortal race Should tell me his return; the cheerful face 260 Of his return’d day never will appear. But tell me, and let Truth your witness bear, Who, and from whence you are? What city’s birth? What parents? In what vessel set you forth? And with what mariners arrived you here? 265 I cannot think you a foot passenger. Recount then to me all, to teach me well Fit usage for your worth. And if it fell In chance now first that you thus see us here, Or that in former passages you were 270 My father’s guest? For many men have been Guests to my father. Studious of men His sociable nature ever was.” On him again the grey-eyed Maid did pass This kind reply: “I’ll answer passing true 275 All thou hast ask’d: My birth his honour drew From wise Anchialus. The name I bear Is Mentas, the commanding islander Of all the Taphians studious in the art Of navigation; having touch’d this part 280 With ship and men, of purpose to maintain Course through the dark seas t’ other-languag’d men; And Temesis sustains the city’s name For which my ship is bound, made known by fame For rich in brass, which my occasions need, 285 And therefore bring I shining steel in stead, Which their use wants, yet makes my vessel’s freight, That near a plough’d field rides at anchor’s weight, Apart this city, in the harbour call’d Rethrus, whose waves with Neius’ woods are wall’d. 290 Thy sire and I were ever mutual guests, At either’s house still interchanging feasts. I glory in it. Ask, when thou shalt see Laertes, th’ old heroe, these of me, From the beginning. He, men say, no more 295 Visits the city, but will needs deplore His son’s believed loss in a private field; One old maid only at his hands to yield Food to his life, as oft as labour makes His old limbs faint; which, though he creeps, he takes 300 Along a fruitful plain, set all with vines, Which husbandman-like, though a king, he proins. But now I come to be thy father’s guest; I hear he wanders, while these wooers feast. And (as th’ Immortals prompt me at this hour) 305 I’ll tell thee, out of a prophetic power, (Not as profess’d a prophet, nor clear seen At all times what shall after chance to men) What I conceive, for this time, will be true: The Gods’ inflictions keep your sire from you. 310 Divine Ulysses, yet, abides not dead Above earth, nor beneath, nor buried In any seas, as you did late conceive, But, with the broad sea sieged, is kept alive Within an isle by rude and upland men, 315 That in his spite his passage home detain. Yet long it shall not be before he tread His country’s dear earth, though solicited, And held from his return, with iron chains; For he hath wit to forge a world of trains, 320 And will, of all, be sure to make good one For his return, so much relied upon. But tell me, and be true: Art thou indeed So much a son, as to be said the seed Of Ithacus himself? Exceeding much 325 Thy forehead and fair eyes at his form touch; For oftentimes we met, as you and I Meet at this hour, before he did apply His powers for Troy, when other Grecian states In hollow ships were his associates. 330 But, since that time, mine eyes could never see Renown’d Ulysses, nor met his with me.” The wise Telemachus again replied: “You shall with all I know be satisfied. My mother certain says I am his son; 335 I know not; nor was ever simply known By any child the sure truth of his sire. But would my veins had took in living fire From some man happy, rather than one wise, Whom age might see seis’d of what youth made prise. 340 But he whoever of the mortal race Is most unblest, he holds my father’s place. This, since you ask, I answer.” She, again: “The Gods sure did not make the future strain Both of thy race and days obscure to thee, 345 Since thou wert born so of Penelope. The style may by thy after act be won, Of so great sire the high undoubted son. Say truth in this then: What’s this feasting here? What all this rout? Is all this nuptial cheer? 350 Or else some friendly banquet made by thee? For here no shots are, where all sharers be. Past measure contumeliously this crew Fare through thy house; which should th’ ingenuous view Of any good or wise man come and find, 355 (Impiety seeing play’d in every kind) He could not but through every vein be mov’d.” Again Telemachus: “My guest much loved, Since you demand and sift these sights so far, I grant ’twere fit a house so regular, 360 Rich, and so faultless once in government, Should still at all parts the same form present That gave it glory while her lord was here. But now the Gods, that us displeasure bear, Have otherwise appointed, and disgrace 365 My father most of all the mortal race. For whom I could not mourn so were he dead, Amongst his fellow captains slaughtered By common enemies, or in the hands Of his kind friends had ended his commands, 370 After he had egregiously bestow’d His power and order in a war so vow’d, And to his tomb all Greeks their grace had done, That to all ages he might leave his son Immortal honour; but now Harpies have 375 Digg’d in their gorges his abhorred grave. Obscure, inglorious, death hath made his end, And me, for glories, to all griefs contend. Nor shall I any more mourn him alone, The Gods have given me other cause of moan. 380 For look how many optimates remain In Samos, or the shores Dulichian, Shady Zacynthus, or how many bear Rule in the rough brows of this island here; So many now my mother and this house 385 At all parts make defamed and ruinous; And she her hateful nuptials nor denies, Nor will dispatch their importunities, Though she beholds them spoil still as they feast All my free house yields, and the little rest 390 Of my dead sire in me perhaps intend To bring ere long to some untimely end.” This Pallas sigh’d and answer’d: “O,” said she, “Absent Ulysses is much miss’d by thee, That on thee shameless suitors he might lay 395 His wreakful hands. Should he now come, and stay In thy court’s first gates, arm’d with helm and shield, And two such darts as I have seen him wield, When first I saw him in our Taphian court, Feasting, and doing his desert’s disport; 400 When from Ephyrus he return’d by us From Ilus, son to Centaur Mermerus, To whom he travell’d through the watery dreads, For bane to poison his sharp arrows’ heads, That death, but touch’d, caused; which he would not give, 405 Because he fear’d the Gods that ever live Would plague such death with death; and yet their fear Was to my father’s bosom not so dear As was thy father’s love; (for what he sought My loving father found him to a thought.) 410 If such as then Ulysses might but meet With these proud wooers, all were at his feet But instant dead men, and their nuptials Would prove as bitter as their dying galls. But these things in the Gods’ knees are reposed, 415 If his return shall see with wreak inclosed, These in his house, or he return no more; And therefore I advise thee to explore All ways thyself, to set these wooers gone; To which end give me fit attention: 420 To-morrow into solemn council call The Greek heroes, and declare to all (The Gods being witness) what thy pleasure is. Command to towns of their nativity, These frontless wooers. If thy mother’s mind 425 Stands to her second nuptials so inclined, Return she to her royal father’s towers, Where th’ one of these may wed her, and her dowers Make rich, and such as may consort with grace So dear a daughter of so great a race. 430 And thee I warn as well (if thou as well Wilt hear and follow) take thy best built sail, With twenty oars mann’d, and haste t’ inquire Where the abode is of thy absent sire, If any can inform thee, or thine ear 435 From Jove the fame of his retreat may hear, For chiefly Jove gives all that honours men. To Pylos first be thy addression then, To god-like Nestor; thence to Sparta haste, To gold-lock’d Menelaus, who was last 440 Of all the brass-arm’d Greeks that sail’d from Troy; And try from both these, if thou canst enjoy News of thy sire’s returned life, anywhere, Though sad thou suffer’st in his search a year. If of his death thou hear’st, return thou home, 445 And to his memory erect a tomb, Performing parent-rites, of feast and game, Pompous, and such as best may fit his fame; And then thy mother a fit husband give. These past, consider how thou mayst deprive 450 Of worthless life these wooers in thy house, By open force, or projects enginous. Thing childish fit not thee; th’ art so no more. Hast thou not heard, how all men did adore Divine Orestes, after he had slain 455 Ægisthus murdering by a treacherous train His famous father? Be then, my most loved, Valiant and manly, every way approved As great as he. I see thy person fit, Noble thy mind, and excellent thy wit, 460 All given thee so to use and manage here That even past death they may their memories bear. In mean time I’ll descend to ship and men, That much expect me. Be observant then Of my advice, and careful to maintain 465 In equal acts thy royal father’s reign.” Telemachus replied: “You ope, fair guest, A friend’s heart in your speech, as well express’d As might a father serve t’ inform his son; All which sure place have in my memory won. 470 Abide yet, though your voyage calls away, That, having bath’d, and dignified your stay With some more honour, you may yet beside Delight your mind by being gratified With some rich present taken in your way, 475 That, as a jewel, your respect may lay Up in your treasury, bestow’d by me, As free friends use to guests of such degree.” “Detain me not,” said she, “so much inclined To haste my voyage. What thy loved mind 480 Commands to give, at my return this way, Bestow on me, that I directly may Convey it home; which more of price to me The more it asks my recompence to thee.” This said, away grey-eyed Minerva flew, 485 Like to a mounting lark; and did endue His mind with strength and boldness, and much more Made him his father long for than before; And weighing better who his guest might be, He stood amaz’d, and thought a Deity 490 Was there descended; to whose will he fram’d His powers at all parts, and went so inflam’d Amongst the wooers, who were silent set, To hear a poet sing the sad retreat The Greeks perform’d from Troy; which was from thence 495 Proclaim’d by Pallas, pain of her offence. When which divine song was perceived to bear That mournful subject by the listening ear Of wise Penelope, Icarius’ seed, Who from an upper room had given it heed, 500 Down she descended by a winding stair, Not solely, but the state in her repair Two maids of honour made. And when this queen Of women stoop’d so low, she might be seen By all her wooers. In the door, aloof, 505 Entering the hall grac’d with a goodly roof, She stood, in shade of graceful veils, implied About her beauties; on her either side, Her honour’d women. When, to tears mov’d, thus She chid the sacred singer: “Phemius, 510 You know a number more of these great deeds Of Gods and men, that are the sacred seeds, And proper subjects, of a poet’s song, And those due pleasures that to men belong, Besides these facts that furnish Troy’s retreat, 515 Sing one of those to these, that round your seat They may with silence sit, and taste their wine; But cease this song, that through these ears of mine Conveys deserv’d occasion to my heart Of endless sorrows, of which the desert 520 In me unmeasur’d is past all these men, So endless is the memory I retain, And so desertful is that memory, Of such a man as hath a dignity So broad it spreads itself through all the pride 525 Of Greece and Argos.” To the queen replied Inspired Telemachus: “Why thus envies My mother him that fits societies With so much harmony, to let him please His own mind in his will to honour these? 530 For these ingenious and first sort of men, That do immediately from Jove retain Their singing rapture, are by Jove as well Inspir’d with choice of what their songs impell, Jove’s will is free in it, and therefore theirs. 535 Nor is this man to blame, that the repairs The Greeks make homeward sings; for his fresh muse Men still most celebrate that sings most news. And therefore in his note your ears employ: For not Ulysses only lost in Troy 540 The day of his return, but numbers more The deadly ruins of his fortunes bore. Go you then in, and take your work in hand, Your web, and distaff; and your maids command To ply their fit work. Words to men are due, 545 And those reproving counsels you pursue, And most to me of all men, since I bear The rule of all things that are managed here.” She went amaz’d away, and in her heart Laid up the wisdom Pallas did impart 550 To her lov’d son so lately, turn’d again Up to her chamber, and no more would reign In manly counsels. To her women she Applied her sway; and to the wooers he Began new orders, other spirits bewray’d 555 Than those in spite of which the wooers sway’d. And (whiles his mother’s tears still wash’d her eyes, Till grey Minerva did those tears surprise With timely sleep, and that her wooers did rouse Rude tumult up through all the shady house, 560 Disposed to sleep because their widow was) Telemachus this new-given spirit did pass On their old insolence: “Ho! you that are My mother’s wooers! Much too high ye bear Your petulant spirits; sit; and, while ye may 565 Enjoy me in your banquets, see ye lay These loud notes down, nor do this man the wrong, Because my mother hath disliked his song, To grace her interruption. ‘Tis a thing Honest, and honour’d too, to hear one sing 570 Numbers so like the Gods in elegance, As this man flows in. By the morn’s first light, I’ll call ye all before me in a Court, That I may clearly banish your resort, With all your rudeness, from these roofs of mine. 575 Away; and elsewhere in your feasts combine. Consume your own goods, and make mutual feast At either’s house. Or if ye still hold best, And for your humours’ more sufficed fill, To feed, to spoil, because unpunish’d still, 580 On other findings, spoil; but here I call Th’ Eternal Gods to witness, if it fall In my wish’d reach once to be dealing wreaks, By Jove’s high bounty, these your present checks To what I give in charge shall add more reins 585 To my revenge hereafter; and the pains Ye then must suffer shall pass all your pride Ever to see redress’d, or qualified.” At this all bit their lips, and did admire His words sent from him with such phrase and fire; 590 Which so much mov’d them that Antinous, Eupitheus’ son, cried out: “Telemachus! The Gods, I think, have rapt thee to this height Of elocution, and this great conceit Of self-ability. We all may pray, 595 That Jove invest not in this kingdom’s sway Thy forward forces, which I see put forth A hot ambition in thee for thy birth.” “Be not offended,” he replied, “if I Shall say, I would assume this empery, 600 If Jove gave leave. You are not he that sings: ‘The rule of kingdoms is the worst of things’. Nor is it ill, at all, to sway a throne; A man may quickly gain possession Of mighty riches, make a wondrous prize 605 Set of his virtues; but the dignities That deck a king, there are enough beside In this circumfluous isle that want no pride To think them worthy of, as young as I, And old as you are. An ascent so high 610 My thoughts affect not. Dead is he that held Desert of virtue to have so excell’d. But of these turrets I will take on me To be the absolute king, and reign as free, As did my father, over all his hand 615 Left here in this house slaves to my command.” Eurymachus, the son of Polybus, To this made this reply: “Telemachus! The girlond of this kingdom let the knees Of Deity run for; but the faculties 620 This house is seised of, and the turrets here, Thou shalt be lord of, nor shall any bear The least part off of all thou dost possess, As long as this land is no wilderness, Nor ruled by out-laws. But give these their pass, 625 And tell me, best of princes, who he was That guested here so late? From whence? And what In any region boasted he his state? His race? His country? Brought he any news Of thy returning father? Or for dues 630 Of moneys to him made he fit repair? How suddenly he rush’d into the air, Nor would sustain to stay and make him known! His port show’d no debauch’d companion.” He answer’d: “The return of my lov’d sire 635 Is past all hope; and should rude Fame inspire From any place a flattering messenger With news of his survival, he should bear No least belief off from my desperate love. Which if a sacred prophet should approve, 640 Call’d by my mother for her care’s unrest, It should not move me. For my late fair guest, He was of old my father’s, touching here From sea-girt Taphos, and for name doth bear Mentas, the son of wise Anchialus, 645 And governs all the Taphians studious Of navigation.” This he said, but knew It was a Goddess. These again withdrew To dances and attraction of the song; And while their pleasures did the time prolong, 650 The sable Even descended, and did steep The lids of all men in desire of sleep. Telemachus, into a room built high Of his illustrious court, and to the eye Of circular prospect, to his bed ascended, 655 And in his mind much weighty thought contended. Before him Euryclea (that well knew All the observance of a handmaid’s due, Daughter to Opis Pisenorides) Bore two bright torches; who did so much please 660 Laertes in her prime, that, for the price Of twenty oxen, he made merchandize Of her rare beauties; and love’s equal flame To her he felt, as to his nuptial dame, Yet never durst he mix with her in bed, 665 So much the anger of his wife he fled. She, now grown old, to young Telemachus Two torches bore, and was obsequious Past all his other maids, and did apply Her service to him from his infancy. 670 His well-built chamber reach’d, she op’d the door, He on his bed sat, the soft weeds he wore Put off, and to the diligent old maid Gave all; who fitly all in thick folds laid, And hung them on a beam-pin near the bed, 675 That round about was rich embroidered. Then made she haste forth from him, and did bring The door together with a silver ring, And by a string a bar to it did pull. He, laid, and cover’d well with curled wool 680 Woven in silk quilts, all night employ’d his mind About the task that Pallas had design’d. FINIS LIBRI PRIMI HOM. ODYSS.