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THE
"HE translation here given was part of a school exercise.

See ANACREON, Ode 40.

IDYLLIUM the TWENTIETH.

. . Whether it belongs to Moschus or Theocritus, it certainly poffeffes a high degree of poetical merit.

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She spoke, and spitting thrice.
Τρις εις τον ελυσε κολπον-Literally, thrice /pit into her bo/om.

It was customary for the ancient Grecians to spit three times into their bosoms, at the fight of a madman, or one troubled with an epilepsy. This they did in defiance, as it were, of the omen; for spitting was a sign of the greatest detestation and contempt. Hence aluev ( to Spit) means to contemn.

POTTER.

LINE

23. Or, else, what God hath fashion'd me anew. Here the poet (fays Martyn) seems to allude to the sudden transformation of Ulysses in Homer's Odyff. xiii. 429.

LINE

25..

like clasping ivy. Krooos. Pliny and THEOPHRASTUS (see note on first Idyll. 1.40 in trans.) have observed, that Kisoos was a species of ivy

that

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that grew without support. If, however, the authority of THEOCRITUS have any weight in botany, this passage proves the direct contrary. Κισσος σοτι πρεμνον. The Greek and Latin poets have often used the ivy as an illustration, in their descrip

tions of personal beauty. Thus VIRGIL: Hedera formofior alba. : On which Spence remarks: · More beautiful than ivy to us

may seem but an odd fimile.' It might sound otherwise to an Italian, whose country abounds with evergreens, most of them of a rulty and disagreeable color ; whereas ivy is of a clean lively green. They used it, of old, in the most beautiful parts of their gardens. Pliny, speaking of his garden, and of the Hippodrome, (which seems to have been one of the prettiest things in it) says: Platanis circuitur ; illa hedera veftiuntur; utque fummæ fuis, ita ima alienis frondibus virent.' HORACE compares young beauties to ivy, and old women to dead withered leaves.

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LINE

30.
Ev'n as MINERVA's eyes more sweetly beam'd.
Minerva's eyes were of a sparkling azure. ANACREON, see
Ode 28, opposes the vivid blue of Minerva's eyes to the soft
languishing of those of Venus. Naturalifts observe, that the
blue eye hath the most powerful effect in beauty, as it reflects
the greatest variety of lights, being composed of more various
colors.

Our
poets

feem to have different ideas of the blue eye from that of THEOCRITUS and Anacreon. The Circafian ladies have been celebrated for

Their eyes' blue languisn, and their golden hair.
So fings the sweetest of our modern bards-borrowing what
hath been commonly thought original, from Pope:
And the blue languilh of soft Alia's eye.

Iliad xviii. 50.
Nor can Collins's much-admired expression

Her eyes of dewy light-
(applied to pity) boast the originality generally attributed to it.
ANACREON, in his portrait of BATHYLLUS, applies the epithet
Açocwoes to the eye.

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Dropt music than the honey-comb more sweet.

Εκ Coματων δε
Ερρεε μοι φωνα γλυκερωθερα η μελικηρω·
Κηριον ασοςαζουσι χειλη ζου, νυμφη μελι και γαλα υπο την γλωσ-
σαν ζε.

Thy lips, O my spouse, drop as the honey-comb; honey and milk are under thy tongue.

LINE 45 And was not sweet ENDYMION's self a swain The Sophift LONGUs who (not excepting Virgil) may be confidered as the most elegant imitator of Theocritus, hath plainly a view to these verses in the following passage: “If I • have been in love with a shepherd, I have but imitated the • Gods. ' ANCHISES was a herdsman, yet Venus delighted in his

perfon. Branchius fed his goats, and APOLLO was enamoured of the fwain. Ganymede was a fhepherd, yet JUPITER • snatched him to heaven.'

WARTON.

IDYLLIUM the TWENTY-FIRST.

THERE
"HERE is a tradition, that Theocritus sung this story to

the Ægyptian fishermen. He might with more propriety, perhaps, have entertained his own countrymen with this simple and pleasing tale. For Asphalion's allusion to the Prytaneum, a place (as the commentators say) on the coast of Sicily, proves the characters of this piece to be Sicilian.

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'Tis penury, DIOPHANTUS, &c. . Tum variæ venere artes, &c.

VIRGIL.

And

And Persius Prol.

Quis expedivit pfittaco, &c.
Thus translated by DRYDEN:

Who taught the parrot human notes to try,
Or with a voice'endu'd the chattering pye?
'Twas witty want, fierce hunger to appease:

Want taught their masters, and their masters these. The introductory lines do not seem well adapted to the dialogue that follows. We find, that though indeed care might intrude on the fishermen during the period of rest, it was care of no very melancholy complexion. They were, on the whole, happy; being represented as content with their fituation. They deemed their cot a palace—and lived in glee.

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Jam fragilem in ficco munibant faxa phaselum;
Raraque per longos pendebant retia remos :
Ante pedes cistæque leves, hamique jacebant,
Et calami, nafæque et viminei labyrinthi.

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Not ev'n a dog or pot was theirs:

а Ou xuveman happy emendation of JOANNES AURATUS. It was before read 8% fyd

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They pass’d their hours, with poverty their friend. The poverty, fimplicity, and contentment of these good old fishermen, are very pleasingly delineated. The African; 'who • lives upon his bow,' as described by Mr. ADDISON, here recurs to memory:

Coarse

Coarse are his meals, the fortune of the chace;
Amidf the running stream he fakes his thirst,
Toils all the day, and at the approach of night
On the first friendly bank be throws him down;
Or rests his head upon a rock 'till morn:
Then rises fresh, pursues. his wonted game;
And if the following day he chance to find
A new repast, or an untasted spring,

Blesses his stars, and thinks tis luxury.
There is a similar painting, and equally beautiful, in Natalis
Comes, De Venat. lib. i.

Ipsa fames jucunda venit venantibus; ullas
Delicias non expectant, quas improba ventris
Ingluvies reperit : Contenti fimpliciori
Sunt menfâ; nec fæmineus sylvestria luxus
Ingreditur: Carpunt alto qua plurima monte
Nascuntur- qua sylva tulit. Si lumina quando
Arrepit fomnus, felis medicina laborum,
Invitant volucrum cantus, dulce que fufurri,
· Et zephyro quæ sylva tremit jactata sereno.
Nec desunt berbe molles, gratissima Arata,
Invidiosa toris, auratis, murice tinetis.

LINE

49. He seems, my friend, the shrewdest judge of dreams, &c.

Taken, probably, from a verse of Euripides, which we meet with in Plutarch.

Μαντις δ'αριςος οσις Ακαζει καλως" * Tully hath thus translated it:

Qui bene conjecit, vatem perhibebo optimum.

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Indeed the living light
In Prytaneum, burns both day and night.

If

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