The Fifteen Books of
Ovid's Metamorphoses, 1567
The first translation into English -
credited to Arthur Golding
Transcribed and Edited by B.F. copyright © 2002
Web design and additional editing by R. Brazil
Words discussed in the glossary are underlined
THE SECONDE BOOKE OF
The Princely Pallace of the Sunne stood gorgeous to beholde
On stately Pillars builded high of yellow burnisht golde,
Beset with sparckling Carbuncles that like to fire did shine.
The roofe was framed curiously of Ivorie pure and fine.
The two doore leaves of silver cleare a radiant light did cast:
But yet the cunning workemanship of things therein farre past
The stuffe wherof the doores were made. For there a perfect plat
Had Vulcane drawne of all the worlde: Both of the sourges that
Embrace the earth with winding waves, and of the stedfast ground,
And of the heaven it selfe also that both encloseth round. ... [II.10]
And first and formest in the Sea the Gods thereof did stande:
Loude sounding Tryton with his shirle and writhen Trumpe in hande:
Unstable Protew chaunging aye his figure and his hue,
From shape to shape a thousande sithes as list him to renue:
Aegeon leaning boystrously on backes of mightie Whales
And Doris with hir daughters all: of which some cut the wales
With splaied armes, some sate on rockes and dride their goodly haire,
And some did ryde uppon the backes of fishes here and theare.
Not one in all poyntes fully lyke an other coulde ye see,
Nor verie farre unlike, but such as sisters ought to bee. ... [II.20]
The Earth had townes, men, beasts and Woods with sundrie trees and rods,
And running Ryvers with their Nymphes and other countrie Gods.
Directly over all these same the plat of heaven was pight,
Upon the two doore leaves, the signes of all the Zodiak bright,
Indifferently six on the left and six upon the right.
When Clymens sonne had climbed up at length with weerie pace,
And set his foote within his doubted fathers dwelling place,
Immediately he preaced forth to put him selfe in sight,
And stoode aloofe. For neere at hande he could not bide the light.
In purple Robe and royall Throne of Emeraudes freshe and greene ... [II.30]
Did Phoebus sitte, and on eche hande stoode wayting well beseene,
Dayes, Monthes, yeares, ages, seasons, times, and eke the equall houres.
There stoode the springtime with a crowne of fresh and fragrant floures.
There wayted Sommer naked starke all save a wheaten Hat:
And Autumne smerde with treading grapes late at the pressing Fat.
And lastly quaking for the colde, stood Winter all forlorne,
With rugged heade as white as Dove, and garments all to torne,
Forladen with the Isycles that dangled up and downe
Uppon his gray and hoarie bearde and snowie frozen crowne.
The Sunne thus sitting in the middes did cast his piercing eye, ... [II.40]
(With which full lightly when he list he all thinges doth espye)
Upon his childe that stood aloofe, agast and trembling sore
At sight of such unwonted things, and thus bespake him thore:
O noble ympe, O Phaeton which art not such (I see)
Of whome thy father should have cause ashamed for to bee:
Why hast thou traveld to my court? what is thy will with mee?
Then answerde he: Of all the worlde O onely perfect light,
O Father Phoebus, (if I may usurpe that name of right,
And that my mother for to save hir selfe from worldely shame,
Hyde not hir fault with false pretence and colour of thy name) ... [II.50]
Some signe apparent graunt whereby I may be knowne thy Sonne,
And let mee hang no more in doubt. He had no sooner donne,
But that his father putting off the bright and fierie beames
That glistred rounde about his heade like cleare and golden streames,
Commaunded him to draw him neere, and him embracing sayde:
To take mee for thy rightfull Sire thou neede not be afrayde.
Thy mother Clymen of a truth from falshood standeth free.
And for to put thee out of doubt aske what thou wilt of mee,
And I will give thee thy desire, the Lake whereby of olde
We Gods do sweare (the which mine eyes did never yet beeholde) ... [II.60]
Beare witnesse with thee of my graunt. He scarce this tale had tolde,
But that the foolish Phaeton straight for a day did crave
The guyding of his winged Steedes, and Chariot for to have.
Then did his Father by and by forethinke him of his oth.
And shaking twentie tymes his heade, as one that was full wroth,
Bespake him thus: Thy wordes have made me rashly to consent
To that which shortly both of us (I feare mee) shall repent.
Oh that I might retract my graunt, my sonne I doe protest
I would denie thee nothing else save this thy fond request.
I may disswade, there lyes herein more perill than thou weene: ... [II.70]
The things the which thou doest desire of great importance beene:
More than thy weakenesse well can wielde, a charge (as well appeares)
Of greater weight, than may agree with these thy tender yeares.
Thy state is mortall, weake and frayle, the thing thou doest desire
Is such, whereto no mortall man is able to aspire.
Yea, foolish boy, thou doest desire (and all for want of wit)
A greater charge than any God coulde ever have as yet.
For were there any of them all so overseene and blinde,
To take upon him this my charge, full quickly should he finde
That none but I could sit upon the fierie Axeltree. ... [II.80]
No not even he that rules this wast and endlesse space we see,
Not he that darts with dreadfull hande the thunder from the Skie,
Shall drive this chare. And yet what thing in all the world perdie
Is able to compare with Jove? Now first the morning way
Lyes steepe upright, so that the steedes in coolest of the day
And beeing fresh have much adoe to climbe against the Hyll.
Amiddes the heaven the gastly heigth augmenteth terror still.
My heart doth waxe as colde as yse full many a tyme and oft
For feare to see the Sea and land from that same place aloft.
The Evening way doth fall plump downe requiring strength to guide, ... [II.90]
That Tethis who doth harbrowgh mee within hir sourges wide
Doth stand in feare lest from the heaven I headlong down should slide.
Besides all this the Heaven aye swimmes and wheeles about full swift
And with his rolling dryves the starres their proper course to shift.
Yet doe I keepe my native course against this brunt so stout,
Not giving place as others doe: but boldely bearing out
The force and swiftnesse of that heaven that whyrleth so about.
Admit thou had my winged Steedes and Chariot in thine hande:
What couldste thou doe? dost thinke thy selfe well able to withstande
The swiftnesse of the whyrled Poles, but that their brunt and sway ... [II.100]
(Yea doe the best and worst thou can) shall beare thee quite away?
Perchaunce thou dost imagine there some townes of Gods to finde,
With groves and Temples richt with giftes as is among mankinde.
Thou art deceyved utterly: thou shalt not finde it so.
By blinde bywayes and ugly shapes of monsters must thou go.
And though thou knewe the way so well as that thou could not stray,
Betweene the dreadful bulles sharp hornes yet must thou make thy way.
Agaynst the cruell Bowe the which the Aemonian archer drawes:
Against the ramping Lyon armde with greedie teeth and pawes:
Against the Scorpion stretching farre his fell and venymd clawes: ... [II.110]
And eke the Crab that casteth forth his crooked clees awrie
Not in such sort as th'other doth, and yet as dreadfully.
Againe thou neyther hast the powre nor yet the skill I knowe
My lustie coursers for to guide that from their nostrilles throwe
And from their mouthes the fierie breath that breedeth in their brest.
For scarcely will they suffer mee who knowes their nature best
When that their cruell courages begin to catch a heate,
That hardely should I deale with them, but that I know the feate.
But lest my gift should to thy griefe and utter perill tend
My Sonne beware and (whyle thou mayst) thy fonde request amend. ... [II.120]
Bycause thou woulde be knowne to bee my childe thou seemst to crave
A certaine signe: what surer signe I pray thee canst thou have
Than this my feare so fatherly the which I have of thee
Which proveth me most certainly thy father for to bee?
Beholde and marke my countenaunce. O would to God thy sight
Could pierce within my wofull brest, to see the heavie plight,
And heapes of cares within my heart. Looke through the worlde so round
Of all the wealth and goodes therein: if ought there may be found
In Heaven or Earth or in the Sea, aske what thou lykest best,
And sure it shall not be denide. This onely one request ... [II.130]
That thou hast made I heartely beseech thee to relent,
Which for to tearme the thing aright is even a punishment,
And not an honour as thou thinkest: my Phaeton thou dost crave
In stead of honour even a scourge and punishment for to have.
Thou fondling thou, what dost thou meane with fawning armes about
My necke thus flattringly to hang? Thou needest not to dout.
I have alreadie sworne by Styx, aske what thou wilt of mee
And thou shalt have. Yet let thy next wish somewhat wiser bee.
Thus ended his advertisment: and yet the wilfull Lad
Withstood his counsell urging still the promisse that he had, ... [II.140]
Desiring for to have the chare as if he had been mad.
His father having made delay as long as he could shift,
Did lead him where his Chariot stood, which was of Vulcans gift.
The Axeltree was massie golde, the Bucke was massie golde,
The utmost fellies of the wheeles, and where the tree was rolde.
The spokes were all of sylver bright, the Chrysolites and Gemmes
That stood uppon the Collars, Trace, and hounces in their hemmes
Did cast a sheere and glimmering light, as Phoebus shone thereon.
Now while the lustie Phaeton stood gazing here upon,
And wondered at the workemanship of everie thing: beeholde ... [II.150]
The earely morning in the East beegan mee to unfolde
Hir purple Gates, and shewde hir house bedeckt with Roses red.
The twinckling starres withdrew which by the morning star are led:
Who as the Captaine of that Host that hath no peere nor match,
Dooth leave his standing last of all within that heavenly watch.
Now when his Father sawe the worlde thus glister red and trim,
And that his waning sisters hornes began to waxen dim,
He had the fetherfooted howres go harnesse in his horse.
The Goddesses with might and mayne themselves thereto enforce.
His fierifoming Steedes full fed with juice of Ambrosie ... [II.160]
They take from Maunger trimly dight: and to their heades doe tie
Strong reyned bits: and to the Charyot doe them well appoint.
Then Phoebus did with heavenly salve his Phaetons heade annoint,
That scorching fire coulde nothing hurt: which done, upon his haire
He put the fresh and golden rayes himselfe was wont to weare.
And then as one whose heart misgave the sorrowes drawing fast,
With sorie sighes he thus bespake his retchlesse sonne at last:
(And if thou canst) at least yet this thy fathers lore obey:
Sonne, spare the whip, and reyne them hard, they run so swift away
As that thou shalt have much adoe their fleeing course to stay. ... [II.170]
Directly through the Zones all five beware thou doe not ride,
A brode byway cut out askew that bendeth on the side
Contaynde within the bondes of three the midmost Zones doth lie:
Which from the grisely Northren beare, and Southren Pole doth flie.
Keepe on this way: my Charyot rakes thou plainely shalt espie
And to th'intent that heaven and earth may well the heate endure,
Drive neyther over high nor yet too lowe. For be thou sure,
And if thou mount above thy boundes, the starres thou burnest cleane.
Againe beneath thou burnst the Earth: most safetie is the meane.
And least perchaunce thou overmuch the right hand way should take, ... [II.180]
And so misfortune should thee drive upon the writhen Snake,
Or else by taking overmuche upon the lefter hand
Unto the Aultar thou be driven that doth against it stand:
Indifferently betweene them both I wish thee for to ride.
The rest I put to fortunes will, who be thy friendly guide,
And better for thee than thy selfe as in this case provide.
Whiles that I prattle here with thee, behold the dankish night
Beyond all Spaine hir utmost bound is passed out of sight.
We may no lenger tariance make: my wonted light is cald,
The Morning with hir countnance cleare the darknesse hath appald. ... [II.190]
Take raine in hand, or if thy minde by counsell altred bee,
Refuse to meddle with my Wayne: and while thou yet art free,
And doste at ease within my house in safegarde well remaine,
Of this thine unadvised wish not feeling yet the paine,
Let me alone with giving still the world his wonted light,
And thou thereof as heretofore enjoy the harmelesse sight.
Thus much in vaine: for Phaeton both yong in yeares and wit,
Into the Chariot lightly lept, and vauncing him in it
Was not a little proud that he the brydle gotten had.
He thankt his father whom it grievde to see his childe so mad. ... [II.200]
While Phebus and his rechelesse sonne were entertalking this,
Aeous, Aethon, Phlegon, and the firie Pyrois,
The restlesse horses of the Sunne, began to ney so hie
Wyth flaming breath, that all the heaven might heare them perfectly.
And with their hoves they mainly beate upon the lattisde grate.
The which when Tethis (knowing nought of this hir cousins fate)
Had put aside, and given the steedes the free and open scope
Of all the compasse of the Skie within the heavenly Cope:
They girded forth, and cutting through the Cloudes that let their race,
With splayed wings they overflew the Easterne winde apace. ... [II.210]
The burthen was so lyght as that the Genets felt it not.
The wonted weight was from the Waine, the which they well did wot.
For like as ships amids the Seas that scant of ballace have,
Doe reele and totter with the wynde, and yeeld to every wave:
Even so the Waine for want of weight it erst was wont to beare,
Did hoyse aloft and scayle and reele, as though it empty were.
Which when the Cartware did perceyve, they left the beaten way
And taking bridle in the teeth began to run astray.
The rider was so sore agast, he knew no use of Rayne,
Nor yet his way: and though he had, yet had it ben in vayne, ... [II.220]
Because he wanted powre to rule the horses and the Wayne.
Then first did sweat cold Charles his Wain through force of Phebus rayes
And in the Sea forbidden him, to dive in vaine assayes.
The Serpent at the frozen Pole both colde and slow by kinde,
Through heat waxt wroth, and stird about a cooler place to finde.
And thou Bootes though thou be but slow of footemanship,
Yet wert thou faine (as Fame reports) about thy Waine to skip.
Now when unhappy Phaeton from top of all the Skie
Behelde the Earth that underneath a great way off did lie,
He waxed pale for sodaine feare, his joynts and sinewes quooke, ... [III.230]
The greatnesse of the glistring light his eyesight from him tooke.
Now wisht he that he never had his fathers horses see:
It yrkt him that he thus had sought to learne his piedegre.
It grievde him that he had prevailde in gaining his request.
To have bene counted Merops sonne he thought it now the best.
Thus thinking was he headlong driven, as when a ship is borne
By blustring windes, hir saileclothes rent, hir sterne in pieces torne,
And tacling brust, the which the Pilote trusting all to prayre
Abandons wholy to the Sea and fortune of the ayre.
What should he doe? much of the heaven he passed had behinde ... [II.240]
And more he saw before: both whiche he measurde in his minde,
Eft looking forward to the West which to approch as then
Might not betide, and to the East eft looking backe agen.
He wist not what was best to doe, his wittes were ravisht so.
For neither could he hold the Reynes, nor yet durst let them go.
And of his horses names was none that he remembred tho.
Straunge uncoth Monsters did he see dispersed here and there
And dreadfull shapes of ugly beasts that in the Welkin were.
There is a certaine place in which the hidious Scorpion throwes
His armes in compasse far abrode, much like a couple of bowes, ... [II.250]
With writhen tayle and clasping cles, whose poyson limmes doe stretch
On every side, that of two signes they full the roume doe retch,
Whome when the Lad beheld all moyst with blacke and lothly swet,
With sharpe and nedlepointed sting as though he seemde to thret,
He was so sore astraught for feare, he let the bridels slacke,
Which when the horses felt lie lose upon their sweating backe,
At rovers straight throughout the Ayre by wayes unknowne they ran
Whereas they never came before since that the worlde began.
For looke what way their lawlesse rage by chaunce and fortune drue
Without controlment or restraint that way they freely flue. ... [II.260]
Among the starres that fixed are within the firmament
They snatcht the Chariot here and there. One while they coursing went
Upon the top of all the skie: anon againe full round
They troll me downe to lower wayes and nearer to the ground,
So that the Moone was in a Maze to see hir brothers Waine
Run under hirs: the singed cloudes began to smoke amaine.
Eche ground the higher that it was and nearer to the Skie,
The sooner was it set on fire, and made therewith so drie
That every where it gan to chinke. The Medes and Pastures greene
Did seare away: and with the leaves, the trees were burned cleene. ... [II.270]
The parched corne did yeelde wherewith to worke his owne decaie.
Tushe, these are trifles. Mightie townes did perish that same daie.
Whose countries with their folke were burnt: and forests ful of wood
Were turnde to ashes with the rocks and mountains where they stood.
Then Athe, Cilician, Taure and Tmole and Oeta flamed hie,
And Ide erst full of flowing springs was then made utter drie.
The learned virgins daily haunt, the sacred Helicon,
And Thracian Hemus (not as yet surnamde Oeagrion,)
Did smoke both twaine: and Aetna hote of nature aye before,
Encreast by force of Phebus flame now raged ten times more. ... [II.280]
The forkt Parnasus, Eryx, Cynth, and Othrys then did swelt
And all the snow of Rhodope did at that present melt.
The like outrage Mount Dindymus, and Mime and Micale felt.
Cytheron borne to sacred use with Osse, and Pindus hie
And Olymp greater than them both did burne excessively.
The passing colde that Scithie had defended not the same
But that the barren Caucasus was partner of this flame.
And so were eke the Airie Alpes and Appennyne beside,
For all the Cloudes continually their snowie tops doe hide.
Then wheresoever Phaeton did chaunce to cast his vew, ... [II.290]
The world was all on flaming fire. The breath the which he drew,
Came smoking from his scalding mouth as from a seething pot.
His Chariot also under him began to waxe red hot.
He could no lenger cure the sparkes and cinder flyeng out,
Againe the culme and smouldring smoke did wrap him round about,
The pitchie darkenesse of the which so wholy had him hent
As that he wist not where he was nor yet which way he went.
The winged horses forcibly did draw him where they wolde.
The Aethiopians at that time (as men for truth upholde)
(The bloud by force of that same heate drawne to the outer part ... [II.300]
And there adust from that time forth) became so blacke and swart.
The moysture was so dried up in Lybie land that time
That altogither drie and scorcht continueth yet that Clyme.
The Nymphes with haire about their eares bewayld their springs and lakes.
Beotia for hir Dyrces losse great lamentation makes.
For Amimone Argos wept, and Corinth for the spring
Pyrene, at whose sacred streame the Muses usde to sing.
The Rivers further from the place were not in better case,
For Tanais in his deepest streame did boyle and steme apace,
Old Penew and Caycus of the countrie Teuthranie, ... [II.310]
And swift Ismenos in their bankes by like misfortune frie.
Then burnde the Psophian Erymanth: and (which should burne ageine,)
The Troian Xanthus and Lycormas with his yellow veine,
Meander playing in his bankes aye winding to and fro,
Migdonian Melas with his waves as blacke as any sloe.
Eurotas running by the foote of Tenare boyled tho.
Then sod Euphrates cutting through the middes of Babilon.
Then sod Orontes, and the Scithian swift Thermodoon.
Then Ganges, Colchian Phasis, and the noble Istre
Alpheus and Sperchius bankes with flaming fire did glistre. ... [II.320]
The golde that Tagus streame did beare did in the chanell melt.
Amid Cayster of this fire the raging heat was felt
Among the quieres of singing Swannes that with their pleasant lay
Along the bankes of Lidian brakes from place to place did stray.
And Nyle for feare did run away into the furthest Clyme
Of all the world, and hid his heade, which to this present tyme
Is yet unfound: his mouthes all seven cleane voyde of water beene.
Like seven great valleys where (save dust) could nothing else be seene.
By like misfortune Hebrus dride and Strymon, both of Thrace.
The Westerne Rivers Rhine and Rhone and Po were in like case: ... [II.330]
And Tyber unto whome the Goddes a faithfull promise gave
Of all the world the Monarchie and soveraigne state to have.
The ground did cranie everie where and light did pierce to hell
And made afraide the King and Queene that in that Realme doe dwell.
The Sea did shrinke and where as waves did late before remaine,
Became a Champion field of dust and even a sandy plaine.
The hilles erst hid farre under waves like Ilelandes did appeare
So that the scattred Cyclades for the time augmented were.
The fishes drew them to the deepes: the Dolphines durst not play
Above the water as before, the Seales and Porkpis lay ... [II.340]
With bellies upward on the waves starke dead: and fame doth go
That Nereus with his wife and daughters all were faine as tho
To dive within the scalding waves. Thrise Neptune did advaunce
His armes above the scalding Sea with sturdy countenaunce:
And thrise for hotenesse of the Ayre, was faine himselfe to hide.
But yet the Earth the Nurce of things enclosde on every side
(Betweene the waters of the Sea and Springs that now had hidden
Themselves within their Mothers wombe) for all the paine abidden,
Up to the necke put forth hir head and casting up hir hand,
Betweene hir forehead and the sunne as panting she did stand ... [II.350]
With dreadfull quaking, all that was she fearfully did shake,
And shrinking somewhat lower downe with sacred voyce thus spake:
O king of Gods and if this be thy will and my desart,
Why doste thou stay with deadly dint thy thunder downe to dart?
And if that needes I perish must through force of firie flame,
Let thy celestiall fire O God I pray thee doe the same.
A comfort shall it be to have thee Author of my death.
I scarce have powre to speak these words (the smoke had stopt hir breath).
Behold my singed haire: behold my dim and bleared eye,
See how about my scorched face the scalding embers flie. ... [II.360]
Is this the guerdon wherewithall ye quite my fruitfulnesse?
Is this the honor that ye gave me for my plenteousnesse
And dutie done with true intent? for suffring of the plough
To draw deepe woundes upon my backe and rakes to rend me through?
For that I over all the yeare continually am wrought?
For giving foder to the beasts and cattell all for nought?
For yeelding corne and other foode wherewith to keepe mankinde?
And that to honor you withall sweete frankinsence I finde?
But put the case that my desert destruction duely crave,
What hath thy brother? what the Seas deserved for to have? ... [II.370]
Why doe the Seas, his lotted part, thus ebbe and fall so low,
Withdrawing from thy Skie to which it ought most neare to grow?
But if thou neyther doste regarde thy brother, neyther mee,
At least have mercy on thy heaven, looke round about and see
How both the Poles begin to smoke which if the fire appall,
To utter ruine (be thou sure) thy pallace needes must fall.
Behold how Atlas ginnes to faint. His shoulders though full strong,
Unneth are able to uphold the sparkling Extree long.
If Sea and Land doe go to wrecke, and heaven it selfe doe burne
To olde confused Chaos then of force we must returne. ... [II.380]
Put to thy helping hand therfore to save the little left
If ought remaine before that all be quite and cleane bereft.
When ended was this piteous plaint, the Earth did hold hir peace.
She could no lenger cure the heate but was compelde to cease.
Into hir bosome by and by she shrunke hir cinged heade
More nearer to the Stygian caves, and ghostes of persones deade.
The Sire of Heaven protesting all the Gods and him also
That lent the Chariot to his child, that all of force must go
To havocke if he helped not, went to the highest part
And top of all the Heaven from whence his custome was to dart ... [II.390]
His thunder and his lightning downe. But neyther did remaine
A Cloude wherewith to shade the Earth, nor yet a showre of raine.
Then with a dreadfull thunderclap up to his eare he bent
His fist, and at the Wagoner a flash of lightning sent,
Which strake his bodie from the life and threw it over wheele
And so with fire he quenched fire. The Steedes did also reele
Upon their knees, and starting up sprang violently, one here,
And there another, that they brast in pieces all their gere.
They threw the Collars from their neckes, and breaking quite asunder
The Trace and Harnesse flang away: here lay the bridles: yonder ... [II.400]
The Extree plucked from the Naves: and in another place
The shevered spokes of broken wheeles: and so at every pace
The pieces of the Chariot torne lay strowed here and there.
But Phaeton (fire yet blasing stil among his yellow haire)
Shot headlong downe, and glid along the Region of the Ayre
Like to a starre in Winter nights (the wether cleare and fayre)
Which though it doe not fall in deede, yet falleth to our sight,
Whome almost in another world and from his countrie quite
The River Padus did receyve, and quencht his burning head.
The water Nymphes of Italie did take his carkasse dead ... [II.410]
And buried it yet smoking still, with Joves threeforked flame,
And wrate this Epitaph in the stone that lay upon the same:
"Here lies the lusty Phaeton which tooke in hand to guide
His fathers Chariot, from the which although he chaunst to slide:
Yet that he gave a proud attempt it cannot be denide."
Wyth ruthfull cheere and heavie heart his father made great mone
And would not shew himselfe abrode, but mournd at home alone.
And if it be to be beleved, as bruited is by fame
A day did passe without the Sunne. The brightnesse of the flame
Gave light: and so unto some kinde of use that mischiefe came. ... [II.420]
But Clymen having spoke, as much as mothers usually
Are wonted in such wretched case, discomfortablely
And halfe beside hir selfe for wo, with torne and scratched brest,
Sercht through the universall world, from East to furthest West,
First seeking for hir sonnes dead coarse, and after for his bones.
She found them by a forren streame, entumbled under stones.
There fell she groveling on his grave, and reading there his name,
Shed teares thereon, and layd hir breast all bare upon the same.
The daughters also of the Sunne no lesse than did their mother,
Bewaild in vaine with flouds of teares, the fortune of their brother: ... [II.430]
And beating piteously their breasts, incessantly did call
The buried Phaeton day and night, who heard them not at all,
About whose tumbe they prostrate lay. Foure times the Moone had filde
The Circle of hir joyned hornes, and yet the sisters hilde
Their custome of lamenting still: (for now continuall use
Had made it custome.) Of the which the eldest, Phaetuse,
About to kneele upon the ground, complaynde hir feete were nom.
To whome as fayre Lampetie was rising for to com,
Hir feete were held with sodaine rootes. The third about to teare
Hir ruffled lockes, filde both hir handes with leaves in steade of heare. ... [II.440]
One wept to see hir legges made wood: another did repine
To see hir armes become long boughes. And shortly to define,
While thus they wondred at themselves, a tender barke began
To grow about their thighes and loynes, which shortly overran
Their bellies, brestes, and shoulders eke, and hands successively,
That nothing (save their mouthes) remainde, aye calling piteously
Upon the wofull mothers helpe. What could the mother doe
But runne now here now there, as force of nature drue hir too,
And deale hir kisses while she might? She was not so content:
But tare their tender braunches downe: and from the slivers went ... [II.450]
Red drops of bloud as from a wound. The daughter that was rent
Cride: Spare us mother spare I pray, for in the shape of tree
The bodies and the flesh of us your daughters wounded bee.
And now farewell. That word once said, the barke grew over all.
Now from these trees flow gummy teares that Amber men doe call,
Which hardened with the heate of sunne as from the boughs they fal
The trickling River doth receyve, and sendes as things of price
To decke the daintie Dames of Rome and make them fine and nice.
Now present at this monstruous hap was Cygnus, Stenels son,
Who being by the mothers side akinne to Phaeton ... [II.460]
Was in condicion more akinne. He leaving up his charge
(For in the land of Ligurie his Kingdome stretched large}
Went mourning all along the bankes and pleasant streame of Po
Among the trees encreased by the sisters late ago.
Annon his voyce became more small and shrill than for a man.
Gray fethers muffled in his face: his necke in length began
Far from his shoulders for to stretche: and furthermore there goes
A fine red string acrosse the joyntes in knitting of his toes:
With fethers closed are his sides: and on his mouth there grew .
A brode blunt byll: and finally was Cygnus made a new ... [II.470]
And uncoth fowle that hight a Swan, who neither to the winde,
The Ayre, nor Jove betakes himselfe, as one that bare in minde
The wrongfull fire sent late against his cousin Phaeton.
In Lakes and Rivers is his joy: the fire he aye doth shon,
And chooseth him the contrary continually to won.
Forlorne and altogether voyde of that same bodie shene
Was Phaetons father in that while which erst had in him bene,
Like as he looketh in Th'eclypse. He hates the yrkesome light,
He hates him selfe, he hates the day, and settes his whole delight
In making sorrow for his sonne, and in his griefe doth storme ... [II.480]
And chaufe denying to the worlde his dutie to performe.
My lot (quoth he) hath had inough of this unquiet state
From first beginning of the worlde. It yrkes me (though too late)
Of restlesse toyles and thankelesse paines. Let who so will for me
Go drive the Chariot in the which the light should caried be.
If none dare take the charge in hand, and all the Gods persist
As insufficient, he himselfe go drive it if he list,
That at the least by venturing our bridles for to guide
His lightning making childlesse Sires he once may lay aside.
By that time that he hath assayde the unappalled force ... [II.490]
That doth remaine and rest within my firiefooted horse,
I trow he shall by tried proufe be able for to tell
How that he did not merit death that could not rule them well.
The Goddes stoode all about the Sunne thus storming in his rage
Beseching him in humble wise his sorrow to asswage.
And that he would not on the world continuall darkenesse bring,
Jove eke excusde him of the fire the which he chaunst to sling,
And with entreatance mingled threates as did become a King.
Then Phebus gathered up his steedes that yet for feare did run
Like flaighted fiendes, and in his moode without respect begun ... [II.500]
To beate his whipstocke on their pates and lash them on the sides.
It was no neede to bid him chaufe; for ever as he rides
He still upbraides them with his sonne, and layes them on the hides.
And Jove almighty went about the walles of heaven to trie,
If ought were perisht with the fire, which when he did espie
Continuing in their former state, all strong and safe and sound,
He went to vew the workes of men, and things upon the ground.
Yet for his land of Arcadie he tooke most care and charge.
The Springs and streames that durst not run he set againe at large.
He clad the earth with grasse, the trees with leaves both fresh and greene ... [II.510]
Commaunding woods to spring againe that erst had burned bene.
Now as he often went and came it was his chaunce to light
Upon a Nymph of Nonacris whose forme and beautie bright
Did set his heart on flaming fire. She used not to spinne
Nor yet to curle hir frisled haire with bodkin or with pinne.
A garment with a buckled belt fast girded did she weare
And in a white and slender Call slight trussed was hir heare.
Sometimes a dart sometime a bow she used for to beare.
She was a knight of Phebes troope. There came not at the mount
Of Menalus of whome Diana made so great account. ... [II.520]
But favor never lasteth long. The Sunne had gone that day
A good way past the poynt of Noone: when werie of hir way
She drue to shadowe in a wood that never had bene cut.
Here off hir shoulder by and by hir quiver did she put,
And hung hir bow unbent aside, and coucht hir on the ground,
Hir quiver underneth hir head. Whom when that Jove had found
Alone and wearie: Sure (he said) my wife shall never know
Of this escape, and if she do, I know the worst I trow.
She can but chide, shall feare of chiding make me to forslow?
He counterfeiteth Phebe streight in countnance and aray. ... [II.530]
And says: O virgine of my troope, where didst thou hunt to day?
The Damsell started from the ground and said: Hayle Goddesse deare,
Of greater worth than Jove (I thinke) though Jove himselfe did heare.
Jove heard hir well and smylde thereat, it made his heart rejoyce
To heare the Nymph preferre him thus before himselfe in choyce.
He fell to kissing: which was such as out of square might seeme,
And in such sort as that a mayde coulde nothing lesse beseeme.
And as she would have told what woods she ranged had for game,
He tooke hir fast betweene his armes, and not without his shame,
Bewrayed plainly what he was and wherefore that he came. ... [II.540]
The wench against him strove as much as any woman could:
I would that Juno had it seene. For then I know thou would
Not take the deede so heynously: with all hir might she strove.
But what poore wench or who alive could vanquish mighty Jove?
Jove having sped flue straight to heaven. She hateth in hir hart
The guiltlesse fields and wood where Jove had playd that naughty part,
Alwaye she goes in such a griefe as that she had welnie
Forgot hir quiver with hir shaftes and bow that hanged by.
Dictynna, garded with hir traine and proude of killing Deere,
In raunging over Menalus, espying, cald hir neere. ... [II.550]
The Damsell hearing Phebe call did run away amaine,
She feared lest in Phebes shape that Jove had come againe,
But when she saw the troope of Nymphes that garded hir about,
She thought there was no more deceyt, and came among the rout.
Oh Lord how hard a matter ist for guiltie hearts to shift
And kepe their countnance? from the ground hir eyes scarce durst she lift.
She prankes not by hir mistresse side, she preases not to bee
The foremost of the companie, as when she erst was free.
She standeth muet: and by chaunging of hir colour ay
The treading of hir shooe awrie she plainely doth bewray, ... [II.560]
Diana might have founde the fault but that she was a May.
A thousand tokens did appeare apparent to the eye,
By which the Nymphes themselves (they say) hir fault did well espie.
Nine times the Moone full to the worlde had shewde hir horned face
When fainting through hir brothers flames and hunting in the chace.
She found a coole and shadie lawnde through midst whereof she spied
A shallow brooke with trickling streame on gravell bottom glide.
And liking well the pleasant place, upon the upper brim
She dipt hir foote, and finding there the water coole and trim,
Away (she sayd) with standers by: and let us bath us here. ... [II.570]
Then Parrhasis cast downe hir head with sad and bashfull chere.
The rest did strip them to their skinnes. She only sought delay
Untill that would or would she not hir clothes were pluckt away.
Then with hir naked body straight hir crime was brought to light.
Which yll ashamde as with hir hands she would have hid from sight,
Fie beast (quoth Cynthia) get thee hence, thou shalt not here defile
This sacred Spring, and from hir traine she did hir quite exile.
The Matrone of the thundring Jove had inckling of the fact,
Delaying till convenient time the punishment to exact.
There is no cause of further stay. To spight hir heart withall, ... [II.580]
Hir husbands Leman bare a boy that Arcas men did call.
On whome she casting lowring looke with fell and cruell minde
Saide: was there, arrant strumpet thou, none other shift to finde
But that thou needes must be with barne? that all the world must see
My husbandes open shame and thine in doing wrong to mee?
But neyther unto heaven nor hell this trespasse shalt thou beare.
I will bereve thee of thy shape through pride whereof thou were
So hardy to entyce my Feere. Immediatly with that
She raught hir by the foretop fast and fiercely threw hir flat
Against the grounde. The wretched wench hir armes up mekely cast, ... [II.590]
Hir armes began with griesly haire to waxe all rugged fast.
Hir handes gan warpe and into pawes ylfavordly to grow,
And for to serve in stede of feete. The lippes that late ago
Did like the mightie Jove so well, with side and flaring flaps
Became a wide deformed mouth. And further lest perhaps
Hir prayers and hir humble wordes might cause hir to relent:
She did bereve hir of hir speech. In steade whereof there went
An yreful, horce, and dreadfull voyce out from a threatning throte:
But yet the selfesame minde that was before she turnde hir cote,
Was in hir still in shape of Beare. The griefe whereof she showes ... [II.600]
By thrusting forth continuall sighes, and up she gastly throwes
Such kinde of handes as then remainde unto the starrie Skie.
And forbicause she could not speake she thought Jove inwardly
To be unthankfull. Oh how oft she daring not abide
Alone among the desert woods, full many a time and tide
Would stalke before hir house in grounds that were hir owne erewhile?
How oft oh did she in the hilles the barking houndes beguile
And in the lawndes where she hir selfe had chased erst hir game,
Now flie hirselfe to save hir life when hunters sought the same?
Full oft at sight of other beastes she hid hir head for feare, ... [II.610]
Forgetting what she was hir selfe. For though she were a Beare,
Yet when she spied other Beares she quooke for verie paine:
And feared Wolves although hir Sire among them did remaine.
Beholde Lycaons daughters sonne that Archas had to name
About the age of fiftene yeares within the forrest came
Of Erymanth, not knowing ought of this his mothers case.
There after pitching of his toyles, as he the stagges did chase,
Upon his mother sodenly it was his chaunce to light,
Who for desire to see hir sonne did stay hirselfe from flight.
And wistly on him cast hir looke as one that did him know. ... [II.620]
But he not knowing what she was began his heeles to show.
And when he saw hir still persist in staring on his face,
He was afrayde, and from hir sight withdrew himselfe apace,
But when he coulde not so be rid, he tooke an armed pike,
In full intent hir through the heart with deadly wound to strike.
But God almighty held his hand, and lifting both away
Did disapoint the wicked Act. For straight he did convay
Them through the Ayre with whirling windes to top of all the skie,
And there did make them neighbour starres about the Pole on hie.
When Juno shining in the heaven hir husbands minion found, ... [II.630]
She swelde for spight: and downe she comes to watry Tethys round
And unto olde Oceanus, whome even the Gods aloft
Did reverence for their just deserts full many a time and oft,
To whome demaunding hir the cause: And aske ye (quoth she) why
That I which am the Queene of Goddes come hither from the sky?
Good cause there is I warrant you. Another holdes my roome.
For never trust me while I live, if when the night is coome,
And overcasteth all the world with shadie darknesse whole,
Ye see not in the heigth of heaven hard by the Northren Pole
Whereas the utmost circle runnes about the Axeltree ... [II.640]
In shortest circuit, gloriously enstalled for to bee
In shape of starres the stinging woundes that make me yll apayde.
Now is there (trow ye) any cause why folke should be afrayde
To do to Juno what they list, or dread hir wrathfull mood,
Which only by my working harme doe turne my foes to good?
O what a mightie act is done? How passing is my powre!
I have bereft hir womans shape, and at this present howre
She is become a Goddesse. Loe this is the scourge so sowre
Wherewith I strike mine enimies. Loe here is all the spight
That I can doe: this is the ende of all my wondrous might, ... [II.650]
No force. I would he should (for me) hir native shape restore,
And take away hir brutish shape, like as he hath before
Done by his other Paramour, that fine and proper piece
Of Argos whom he made a Cow, I meane Phoronews Niece.
Why makes he not a full devorce from me, and in my stead
Straight take his Sweetheart to his wife, and coll hir in my bed?
He can not doe a better deede (I thinke) than for to take
Lycaon to his fatherinlaw. But if that you doe make
Accompt of me your foster childe, then graunt that for my sake,
The Oxen and the wicked Waine of starres in number seven, ... [II.660]
For whoredome sake but late ago receyved into heaven,
May never dive within your waves. Ne let that strumpet vyle
By bathing of hir filthie limmes your waters pure defile.
The Gods did graunt hir hir request: and straight to heaven she flue,
In handsome Chariot through the Ayre, which painted peacocks drue
As well beset with blasing eyes late tane from Argus hed,
As thou thou prating Raven white by nature being bred,
Hadst on thy fethers justly late a coly colour spred.
For this same birde in auncient time had fethers faire and whight
As ever was the driven snow, or silver cleare and bright. ... [II.670]
He might have well comparde himself in beautie with the Doves
That have no blemish, or the Swan that running water loves:
Or with the Geese that afterward should with their gagling out
Preserve the Romaine Capitoll beset with foes about.
His tongue was cause of all his harme, his tatling tongue did make
His colour which before was white, become so foule and blake.
Coronis of Larissa was the fairest maide of face,
In all the land of Thessalie. Shee stoode in Phebus grace
As long as that she kept hir chast, or at the least as long
As that she scaped unespide in doing Phebus wrong. ... [II.680]
But at the last Apollos birde hir privie packing spide,
Whome no entreatance could persuade but that he swiftly hide
Him to his maister, to bewray the doings of his love.
Now as he flue, the pratling Crow hir wings apace did move:
And overtaking fell in talke and was inquisitive
For what intent and to what place he did so swiftly drive.
And when she heard the cause thereof, she said: Now trust me sure,
This message on the whiche thou goste no goodnesse will procure.
And therefore hearken what I say: disdaine thou not at all,
To take some warning by thy friende in things that may befall. ... [II.690]
Consider what I erst have bene and what thou seest me now:
And what hath bene the ground hereof. I boldly dare avow,
That thou shalt finde my faithfulnesse imputed for a crime.
For Pallas in a wicker chest had hid upon a time
A childe calde Ericthonius, whome never woman bare,
And tooke it unto Maidens three that Cecrops daughters were,
Not telling them what was within, but gave them charge to keepe
The Casket shut, and for no cause within the same to peepe.
I standing close among the leaves upon an Elme on hie,
Did marke their doings and their wordes, and there I did espie ... [II.700]
How Pandrosos and Herse kept their promise faithfully.
Aglauros calles them Cowardes both, and makes no more adoe,
But takes the Casket in hir hand and doth the knots undooe.
And there they saw a childe whose partes beneath were like a snake.
Straight to the Goddesse of this deede a just report I make.
For which she gave me this reward that never might I more
Accompt hir for my Lady and my Mistresse as before.
And in my roume she put the fowle that flies not but by night,
A warning unto other birdes my lucke should be of right
To holde their tongues for being shent. But you will say perchaunce ... [II.710]
I came unsentfor of my selfe, she did me not advaunce.
I dare well say though Pallas now my heavie Mistresse stand
Yet if perhaps ye should demaund the question at hir hand,
As sore displeased as she is, she would not this denie:
But that she chose me first hir selfe to beare hir companie.
For (well I know) my father was a Prince of noble fame,
Of Phocis King by long discent, Coronew was his name:
I was his darling and his joy, and many a welthie Piere
(I would not have you thinke disdaine) did seeke me for their Fere.
My forme and beautie did me hurt. For as I leysurely ... [II.720]
Went jetting up and downe the shore upon the gravell drie,
As yet I customably doe, the God that rules the Seas
Espying me fell straight in love. And when he saw none ease
In sute, but losse of wordes and time, he offred violence,
And after me he runnes apace. I skudde as fast fro thence,
From sand to shore from shore to sand, still playing Foxe to hole,
Untill I was so tirde that he had almost got the gore.
Then cald I out on God and man. But (as it did appeare)
There was no man so neare at hand that could my crying heare.
A Virgin Goddesse pitied me bicause I was a mayde: ... [II.730]
And at the utter plunge and pinche did send me present ayde.
I cast mine armes to heaven, mine armes waxt light with fethers black,
I went about to cast in hast my garments from my back,
And all was fethers. In my skinne the rooted fethers stack.
I was about with violent hand to strike my naked breast,
But nether had I hand nor breast that naked more did reast.
I ran, but of my feete as erst remained not the print.
Me thought I glided on the ground. Anon with sodaine dint,
I rose and hovered in the Ayre. And from that instant time
Did wait on Pallas faithfully without offence or crime. ... [II.740]
But what availes all this to me, and if that in my place
The wicked wretch Nyctyminee (who late for lacke of grace
Was turned to an odious birde) to honor called bee?
I pray thee didst thou never heare how false Nyctyminee
(A thing all over Lesbos knowne) defilde hir fathers couch?
The beast is now become a birde, whose lewdnesse doth so touch
And pricke hir guiltie conscience that she dares not come in sight,
Nor shewe hirselfe abrode a dayes, but fleeteth in the night
For shame lest folke should see hir fault: and every other birde
Doth in the Ayre and Ivie toddes with wondring at hir girde. ... [II.750]
A mischiefe take thy tatling tongue, the Raven answerde tho.
Thy vaine forspeaking moves me not. And so he forth did go
And tels his Lorde Apollo how he saw Coronis lie
Wyth Isthyis, a Gentleman that dwelt in Thessalie.
When Phebus heard his lovers fault, he fiersly gan to frowne,
And cast his garlond from his head, and threw his violl downe.
His colour chaungde, his face lookt pale, and as the rage of yre
That boyled in his belking breast had set his heart on fyre,
He caught me up his wonted tooles, and bent his golden bow
And by and by with deadly stripe of unavoyded blow ... [II.760]
Strake through the breast the which his owne had toucht so oft afore.
She wounded gave a piteous shrike, and (drawing from the sore
The deadly Dart the which the bloud pursuing after fast
Upon hir white and tender limmes a scarlet colour cast)
Saide: Phebus, well, thou might have wreakt this trespasse on my head
And yet forborne me till the time I had bene brought abed.
Now in one body by thy meanes a couple shall be dead.
Thus muche she saide: and with the bloud hir life did fade away.
The bodie being voyde of soule became as colde as clay.
Than all too late, alas too late gan Phebus to repent ... [II.770]
That of his lover he had tane so cruell punishment.
He blames himselfe for giving eare so unadvisedly.
He blames himselfe in that he tooke it so outragiously.
He hates and bannes his faithfull birde bicause he did enforme
Him of his lovers naughtinesse that made him so to storme.
He hates his bow, he hates his shaft that rashly from it went:
And eke he hates his hasty hands by whom the bow was bent.
He takes hir up betweene his armes endevoring all too late
By plaister made of precious herbes to stay hir helplesse fate.
But when he saw there was no shift: but that she needes must burne, ... [II.780]
And that the solemne sacred fire was prest to serve the turne,
Then from the bottome of his heart full sorie sighes he fet,
(For heavenly powres with watrie teares their cheekes may never wet)
In case as when a Cow beholdes the cruell butcher stand
With launching Axe embrewd with bloud and lifting up his hand
Aloft to snatch hir sucking Calfe that hangeth by the heeles
And of the Axe the deadly dint upon his forehead feeles.
Howbeit after sweete perfumes bestowde upon hir corse
And much embracing, having sore bewailde hir wrong divorce,
He followed to the place assignde hir bodie for to burne. ... [II.790]
There coulde he not abide to see his seede to ashes turne.
But tooke the baby from hir wombe and from the firie flame,
And unto double Chyrons den conveyed straight the same.
The Raven hoping for his truth to be rewarded well,
He maketh blacke, forbidding him with whiter birdes to dwell.
The Centaure Chyron in the while was glad of Phebus boy
And as the burthen brought some care the honor brought him joy.
Upon a time with golden lockes about hir shoulders spread,
A daughter of the Centaurs (whome a certaine Nymph had bred
About the brooke Caycus bankes) that hight Ocyroe ... [II.800]
Came thither. This same fayre yong Nymph could not contented be
To learne the craft of Surgerie as perfect as hir Sire,
But that to learne the secret doomes of Fate she must aspire.
And therfore when the furious rage of frenzie had hir cought,
And that the spright of Prophecie enflamed had hir thought,
She lookt upon the childe and saide: Sweete babe the Gods thee make
A man. For all the world shall fare the better for thy sake.
All sores and sicknesse shalt thou cure: thy powre shall eke be syche,
To make the dead alive again. For doing of the whiche
Against the pleasure of the Gods, thy Graundsire shall thee strike ... [II.810]
So with his fire, that never more thou shalt performe the like.
And of a God a bludlesse corse, and of a corse (full straunge)
Thou shalt become a God againe, and twice thy nature chaunge.
And thou my father liefe and deare, who now by destinie,
Art borne to live for evermore and never for to die,
Shalt suffer such outragious paine throughout thy members all,
By wounding of a venimde dart that on thy foote shall fall,
That oft thou shalt desire to die, and in the latter end
The fatall dames shall breake thy threede and thy desire thee send.
There was yet more behinde to tell, when sodenly she fet ... [II.820]
A sore deepe sigh, and downe hir cheekes the teares did trickle wet.
Mine owne misfortune (quoth she) now hath overtake me sure.
I cannot utter any more, for words waxe out of ure.
My cunning was not worth so much as that it should procure
The wrath of God. I feele by proufe far better had it bene:
If that the chaunce of things to come I never had foreseene.
For now my native shape withdrawes. Me thinkes I have delight
To feede on grasse and fling in fieldes: I feele my selfe so light.
I am transformed to a Mare like other of my kinne.
But wherfore should this brutish shape all over wholy winne? ... [II.830]
Considering that although both horse and man my father bee:
Yet is his better part a man as plainly is to see.
The latter ende of this complaint was fumbled in such wise,
As what she meant the standers by could scarcely well devise.
Anon she neyther semde to speake nor fully for to ney,
But like to one that counterfeites in sport the Mare to play.
Within a while she neyed plaine, and downe hir armes were pight
Upon the ground all clad with haire, and bare hir bodie right.
Hir fingers joyned all in one, at ende wherof did grow
In stede of nayles a round tough hoofe of welked horne bylow. ... [II.840]
Hir head and necke shot forth in length, hir kirtle trayne became
A faire long taile. Hir flaring haire was made a hanging Mane.
And as hir native shape and voyce most monstrously did passe,
So by the uncoth name of Mare she after termed was.
The Centaure Chyron wept hereat: and piteously dismaide
Did call on thee (although in vaine) thou Delphian God for ayde.
For neyther lay it in thy hande to breake Joves mighty hest,
And though it had, yet in thy state as then thou did not rest.
In Elis did thou then abide and in Messene lande.
It was the time when under shape of shepehierde with a wande ... [II.850]
Of Olyve and a pipe of reedes thou kept Admetus sheepe.
Now in this time that (save of Love) thou tooke none other keepe,
And madste thee merrie with thy pipe, the glistring Maias sonne
By chaunce abrode the fields of Pyle spide certaine cattle runne
Without a hierde, the which he stole and closely did them hide
Among the woods. This pretie slight no earthly creature spide,
Save one old churle that Battus hight. This Battus had the charge
Of welthie Neleus feeding groundes, and all his pastures large,
And kept a race of goodly Mares. Of him he was afraide.
And lest by him his privie theft should chaunce to be bewraide, ... [II.860]
He tooke a bribe to stop his mouth, and thus unto him saide:
My friend I pray thee if perchaunce that any man enquire
This cattell say thou saw them not. And take thou for thy hire
This faire yong Bullocke. Tother tooke the Bullocke at his hand,
And shewing him a certaine stone that lay upon the lande,
Sayd, go thy way: Assoone this stone thy doings shall bewray,
As I shall doe. So Mercurie did seeme to go his way.
Annon he commes me backe againe, and altred both in speche
And outward shape, saide: Countrieman Ich heartely bezeche,
And if thou zawest any kie come royling through this grounde, ... [II.870]
Or driven away, tell what he was and where they may be vownde.
And I chill gethee vor thy paine an Hecfar and hir match.
The Carle perceyving double gaine, and greedy for to catch,
Sayde: Under yon same hill they were, and under yon same hill
Cham zure they are, and with his hand he poynted thereuntill.
At that Mercurius laughing saide: False knave: and doste bewray
Me to my selfe? doste thou bewray me to my selfe I say?
And with that word strayt to a stone he turnde his double heart,
In which the slaunder yet remaines without the stones desart.
The Bearer of the charmed Rod, the suttle Mercurie, ... [II.880]
This done, arose with waving wings and from that place did flie.
And as he hovered in the Ayre he viewde the fieldes bylow
Of Atticke and the towne it selfe with all the trees that grow
In Lycey where the learned Clarkes did wholsome preceptes show.
By chaunce the verie selfesame day the virgins of the towne
Of olde and auncient custome bare in baskets on their crowne
Beset with garlands fresh and gay and strowde with flowres sweete
To Pallas towre such sacrifice as was of custome meete.
The winged God beholding them returning in a troupe
Continued not directly forth, but gan me downe to stoupe, ... [II.890]
And fetch a wyndlasse round about. And as the hungry kite
Beholding unto sacrifice a Bullocke redie dight,
Doth sore about his wished pray desirous for to snatche
But that he dareth not for such as stand about and watch:
So Mercurie with nimble wings doth keepe a lower gate
About Minervas loftie towres in round and wheeling rate.
As far as doth the Morning starre in cleare and streaming light
Excell all other starres in heaven: as far also as bright
Dame Phebe dimmes the Morning starre, so far did Herses face
Staine all the Ladies of hir troupe: she was the verie grace ... [II.900]
And beautie of that solemne pompe, and all that traine so fayre.
Joves sonne was ravisht with the sight, and hanging in the ayre
Began to swelt within himselfe, in case as when the poulder
Hath driven the Pellet from the Gunne, the Pellet ginnes to smoulder:
And in his flying waxe more hote. In smoking brest he shrowdes
His flames not brought from heaven above but caught beneath the clouds.
He leaves his jorney toward heaven and takes another race
Not minding any lenger time to hide his present case.
So great a trust and confidence his beautie to him gave
Which though it seemed of it selfe sufficient force to have, ... [II.910]
Yet was he curious for to make himselfe more fine and brave.
He kembd his head and strokt his beard, and pried on every side
To see that in his furniture no wrinkle might be spide.
And forbicause his Cloke was fringde and garded brode with golde,
He cast it on his shoulder up most seemely to beholde.
He takes in hand his charmed rod that bringeth things asleepe
And wakes them when he list againe. And lastly taketh keepe
That on his faire welformed feete his golden shooes sit cleene,
And that all other things therto well correspondent beene.
In Cecrops Court were Chambers three set far from all resort ... [II.920]
With yvorie beddes all furnished in far most royall sort.
Of which Aglauros had the left and Pandrose had the right
And Herse had the middlemost. She that Aglauros hight
First markt the comming of the God, and asking him his name
Demaunded him for what entent and cause he thither came.
Pleiones Nephew, Maias sonne, did make hir aunswere thus:
I am my fathers messenger, his pleasure to discusse
To mortall folke and hellish fiendes as list him to commaund.
My father is the mightie Jove. To that thou doste demaund
I will not feyne a false excuse. I aske no more but graunt ... [II.930]
To keepe thy sisters counsell close, and for to be the Aunt
Of such the issue as on hir my chaunce shalbe to get.
Thy sister Herse is the cause that hath me hither fet.
I pray thee beare thou with my love that is so firmely set.
Aglauros cast on Mercurie hir scornfull eyes aside,
With which against Minervas will hir secretes late she spide,
Demaunding him in recompence a mighty masse of Golde:
And would not let him enter in until the same were tolde.
The warlike Goddesse cast on hir a sterne and cruell looke,
And fetched such a cutting sigh that forcibly it shooke ... [II.940]
Both brest and brestplate, wherewithall it came unto hir thought
How that Aglauros late ago against hir will had wrought
In looking on the Lemman childe contrarie to hir othe,
The whiche she tooke hir in the chest, for which she waxed wrothe.
Againe she saw hir cancred heart maliciously repine
Against hir sister and the God. And furthermore in fine
How that the golde which Mercurie had given hir for hir meede,
Would make hir both in welth and pride all others to exceede.
She goes me straight to Envies house, a foule and irksome cave,
Replete with blacke and lothly filth and stinking like a grave. ... [II.950]
It standeth in a hollow dale where neyther light of Sunne
Nor blast of any winde or Ayre may for the deepenesse come.
A dreyrie sad and dolefull den ay full of slouthfull colde
As which ay dimd with smoldring smoke doth never fire beholde,
When Pallas, that same manly Maide, approched nere this plot,
She staide without, for to the house in enter might she not,
And with hir Javelin point did give a push against the doore.
The doore flue open by and by and fell me in the floore.
There saw she Envie sit within fast gnawing on the flesh
Of Snakes and Todes, the filthie foode that keepes hir vices fresh. ... [II.960]
It lothde hir to beholde the sight. Anon the Elfe arose
And left the gnawed Adders flesh, and slouthfully she goes
With lumpish laysure like a Snayle, and when she saw the face
Of Pallas and hir faire attire adournde with heavenly grace,
She gave a sigh, a sorie sigh, from bottome of hir heart.
Hir lippes were pale, hir cheekes were wan, and all hir face was swart:
Hir bodie leane as any Rake. She looked eke askew:
Hir teeth were furde with filth and drosse, hir gums were waryish blew.
The working of hir festered gall had made hir stomacke greene.
And all bevenimde was hir tongue. No sleepe hir eyes had seene. ... [II.970]
Continuall Carke and cankred care did keepe hir waking still:
Of laughter (save at others harmes) the Helhound can no skill.
It is against hir will that men have any good successe,
And if they have, she frettes and fumes within hir minde no lesse
Than if hir selfe had taken harme. In seeking to annoy
And worke distresse to other folke, hir selfe she doth destroy.
Thus is she torment to hir selfe. Though Pallas did hir hate,
Yet spake she briefly these few wordes to hir without hir gate:
Infect thou with thy venim one of Cecrops daughters three,
It is Aglauros whome I meane, for so it needes must bee. ... [II.980]
This said, she pight hir speare in ground, and tooke hir rise thereon.
And winding from that wicked wight did take hir flight anon.
The Caitife cast hir eye aside, and seeing Pallas gon,
Began to mumble with hir selfe the Divels Paternoster,
And fretting at hir good successe, began to blow and bluster.
She takes a crooked staffe in hand bewreathde with knubbed prickes,
And covered with a coly cloude, where ever that she stickes
Hir filthie feete, she tramples downe and seares both grasse and corne:
That all the fresh and fragrant fieldes seeme utterly forlorne.
And with hir staffe she tippeth off the highest poppie heades. ... [II.990]
Such poyson also every where ungraciously she sheades,
That every Cottage where she comes and every Towne and Citie
Doe take infection at hir breath. At length (the more is pitie)
She found the faire Athenian towne that flowed freshly then
In feastfull peace and joyfull welth and learned witts of men.
And forbicause she nothing saw that might provoke to weepe,
It was a corsie to hir heart hir hatefull teares to keepe.
Now when she came within the Court, she went without delay
Directly to the lodgings where King Cecrops daughters lay,
There did she as Minerva bad. She laide hir scurvie fist ... [II.1000]
Besmerde with venim and with filth upon Aglauros brist,
The whiche she filde with hooked thornes: and breathing on hir face
Did shead the poyson in hir bones: which spred it selfe apace,
As blacke as ever virgin pitch through Lungs and Lights and all.
And to th'intent that cause of griefe abundantly should fall,
She placed ay before hir eyes hir sisters happie chaunce
In being wedded to the God, and made the God to glaunce
Continually in heavenly shape before hir wounded thought.
And all these things she painted out, which in conclusion wrought
Such corsies in Aglauros brest that sighing day and night ... [II.1010]
She gnawde and fretted in hir selfe for very cancred spight.
And like a wretche she wastes hir selfe with restlesse care and pine
Like as the yse whereon the Sunne with glimering light doth shine.
Hir sister Herses good successe doth make hir heart to yerne,
In case as when that fire is put to greenefeld wood or fearne
Whych giveth neyther light nor heate, but smulders quite away:
Sometime she minded to hir Sire hir sister to bewray,
Who (well she knew) would yll abide so lewde a part to play.
And oft she thought with wilfull hande to brust hir fatall threede,
Bicause she woulde not see the thing that made hir heart to bleede. ... [II.1020]
At last she sate hir in the doore and leaned to a post
To let the God from entring in. To whome now having lost
Much talke and gentle wordes in vayne, she said: Sir, leave I pray
For hence I will not (be you sure) onlesse you go away.
I take thee at thy word (quoth he) and therewithall he pusht
His rod against the barred doore, and wide it open rusht.
She making proffer for to rise, did feele so great a waight
Through all hir limmes, that for hir life she could not stretch hir straight.
She strove to set hirself upright: but striving booted not.
Hir hamstrings and hir knees were stiffe, a chilling colde had got ... [II.1030]
In at hir nayles, through all hir limmes. And eke hir veynes began
For want of bloud and lively heate, to waxe both pale and wan.
And as the freting Fistula forgrowne and past all cure
Runnes in the flesh from place to place, and makes the sound and pure
As bad or worser than the rest, even so the cold of death
Strake to hir heart, and closde hir veines, and lastly stopt hir breath:
She made no profer for to speake, and though she had done so
It had bene vaine. For way was none for language forth to go.
Hir throte congealed into stone: hir mouth became hard stone,
And like an image sate she still, hir bloud was clearely gone, ... [II.1040]
The which the venim of hir heart so fowly did infect,
That ever after all the stone with freckled spots was spect.
When Mercurie had punisht thus Aglauros spightfull tung
And cancred heart, immediatly from Pallas towne he flung.
And flying up with flittering wings did pierce to heaven above.
His father calde him straight aside (but shewing not his love)
Said: Sonne, my trustie messenger and worker of my will,
Make no delay but out of hand flie downe in hast untill
The land that on the left side lookes upon thy mothers light,
Yon same where standeth on the coast the towne that Sidon hight. ... [II.1050]
The King hath there a heirde of Neate that on the Mountaines feede,
Go take and drive them to the sea with all convenient speede.
He had no sooner said the word but that the heirde begun
Driven from the mountaine to the shore appointed for to run,
Whereas the daughter of the King was wonted to resort
With other Ladies of the Court there for to play and sport.
Betweene the state of Majestie and love is set such oddes,
As that they can not dwell in one. The Sire and King of Goddes
Whose hand is armd with triplefire, who only with his frowne
Makes Sea and Land and Heaven to quake, doth lay his scepter downe ... [II.1060]
With all the grave and stately port belonging thereunto,
And putting on the shape of Bull (as other cattell doe)
Goes lowing gently up and downe among them in the field
The fairest beast to looke upon that ever man beheld.
For why? his colour was as white as any winters snow
Before that eyther trampling feete or Southerne winde it thow.
His necke was brawnd with rolles of flesh, and from his chest before
A dangling dewlap hung me downe good halfe a foote and more.
His hornes were small, but yet so fine as that ye would have thought
They had bene made by cunning hand or out of waxe bene wrought. ... [II.1070]
More cleare they were a hundreth fold than is the Christall stone,
In all his forehead fearfull frowne or wrinkle there was none.
No fierce, no grim, nor griesly looke as other cattle have,
But altogether so demure as friendship seemde to crave.
Agenors daughter marveld much so tame a beast to see,
But yet to touche him at the first too bolde she durst not bee.
Annon she reaches to his mouth hir hand with herbes and flowres.
The loving beast was glad thereof and neither frownes nor lowres.
But till the hoped joy might come with glad and fauning cheare
He lickes hir hands and scarce ah scarce the resdue he forbeare. ... [II.1080]
Sometime he friskes and skippes about and showes hir sport at hand
Annon he layes his snowie side against the golden sand.
So feare by little driven away, he offred eft his brest
To stroke and coy, and eft his hornes with flowers to be drest.
At last Europa knowing not (for so the Maide was calde)
On whome she venturde for to ride, was nerawhit appalde
To set hir selfe upon his backe. Then by and by the God
From maine drie land to maine moyst Sea gan leysurly to plod.
At first he did but dip his feete within the outmost wave,
And backe againe, then further in another plunge he gave. ... [II.1090]
And so still further till at the last he had his wished pray
Amid the deepe where was no meanes to scape with life away.
The Ladie quaking all for feare with rufull countnance cast
Ay toward shore from whence she came, held with hir righthand fast
One of his hornes: and with the left did stay upon his backe.
The weather flaskt and whisked up hir garments being slacke.
FINIS SECUNDI LIBRI.
Length: 12,279 words
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