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 THIRD BOOKE of Ovids Metamorphosis.
The God now having laide aside his borrowed shape of Bull,
Had in his likenesse shewde himselfe: And with his pretie trull
Tane landing in the Isle of Crete. When in that while hir Sire
Not knowing where she was become, sent after to enquire
Hir brother Cadmus, charging him his sister home to bring,
Or never for to come againe: wherein he did a thing,
For which he might both justly kinde, and cruell called bee.
When Cadmus over all the world had sought, (for who is hee
That can detect the thefts of Jove?) and no where could hir see:
Then as an outlaw (too avoyde his fathers wrongfull yre) ... [III.10]
He went to Phebus Oracle most humbly to desire
His heavenly counsell, where he would assigne him place to dwell.
An Heifer all alone in field (quoth Phebus) marke hir well,
Which never bare the pinching yoke, nor drew the plough as yit,
Shall meete thee: follow after hir, and where thou seest hir sit,
There builde a towne, and let thereof Boetia be the name.
Downe from Parnasus stately top scarce fully Cadmus came,
When royling softly in the vale before the herde alone
He saw an Heifer on whose necke of servage print was none.
He followde after leysurly as hir that was his guide, ... [III.20]
And thanked Phebus in his heart that did so well provide.
Now had he past Cephisus forde, and eke the pleasant groundes
About the Citie Panope conteinde within the boundes.
The Heifer staide, and lifting up hir forehead to the skie
Full seemely for to looke upon with hornes like braunches hie,
Did with hir lowing fill the Ayre: and casting backe hir eie
Upon the rest that came aloofe, as softly as she could
Kneelde down, and laide hir hairie side against the grassie mould.
Then Cadmus gave Apollo thankes, and falling flat bylow,
Did kisse the ground and haile the fields which yet he did not know. ... [III.30]
He was about to sacrifice to Jove the Heavenly King,
And bad his servants goe and fetch him water of the spring.
An olde forgrowne unfelled wood stood near at hand thereby,
And in the middes a queachie plot with Sedge and Osiers hie.
Where courbde about with peble stone in likenesse of a bow
There was a spring with silver streames that forth thereof did flow.
Here lurked in his lowring den God Mars his griesly Snake
With golden scales and firie eyes beswolne with poyson blake.
Three spirting tongues, three rowes of teeth within his head did sticke.
No sooner had the Tirian folke set foote within this thicke ... [III.40]
And queachie plot, and deped downe their bucket in the well,
But that to buscle in his den began this Serpent fell,
And peering with a marble head right horribly to hisse.
The Tirians let their pitchers slip for sodaine feare of this,
And waxing pale as any clay, like folke amazde and flaight,
Stoode trembling like an Aspen leafe. The specled serpent straight
Comes trailing out in waving linkes,and knottie rolles of scales,
And bending into bunchie boughts his bodie forth he hales.
And lifting up above the wast himselfe unto the Skie,
He overlooketh all the wood, as huge and big welnie ... [III.50]
As is the Snake that in the heaven about the Nordren pole
Devides the Beares. He makes no stay but deales his dreadfull dole
Among the Tirians. Whether they did take them to their tooles,
Or to their heeles, or that their feare did make them stand like fooles,
And helpe themselves by none of both: he snapt up some alive,
And swept in others with his taile, and some he did deprive
Of life with rankenesse of his breath, and other some againe
He stings and poysons unto death till all at last were slaine.
Now when the Sunne was at his heigth and shadowes waxed short,
And Cadmus saw his companie make tarience in that sort, ... [III.60]
He marveld what should be their let, and went to seeke them out.
His harnesse was a Lions skin that wrapped him about.
His weapons were a long strong speare with head of yron tride,
And eke a light and piercing Dart. And thereunto beside
Worth all the weapons in the world a stout and valiant hart.
When Cadmus came within the wood, and saw about that part
His men lie slaine upon the ground, and eke their cruell fo
Of bodie huge stand over them, and licking with his blo
And blasting tongue their sorie woundes: well trustie friendes (quoth he)
I eyther of your piteous deathes will streight revenger be, ... [III.70]
Or else will die my selfe therefore. With that he raughting fast
A mightie Milstone, at the Snake with all his might it cast.
The stone with such exceding force and violence forth was driven,
As of a fort the bulwarkes strong and walles it would have riven.
And yet it did the Snake no harme: his scales as hard and tough
As if they had bene plates of mayle did fence him well inough,
So that the stone rebounded backe against his freckled slough.
But yet his hardnesse savde him not against the piercing dart.
For hitting right betweene the scales that yeelded in that part
Whereas the joynts doe knit the backe, it thirled through the skin, ... [III.80]
And pierced to his filthy mawe and greedy guts within.
He fierce with wrath wrings backe his head, and looking on the stripe
The Javeling steale that sticked out, betweene his teeth doth gripe.
The which with wresting to and fro at length he forthe did winde,
Save that he left the head thereof among his bones behinde.
When of his courage through the wound more kindled was the ire,
His throteboll sweld with puffed veines, his eyes gan sparkle fire.
There stoode about his smeared chaps a lothly foming froth.
His skaled brest ploughes up the ground, the stinking breath that goth
Out from his black and hellish mouth infectes the herbes full fowle. ... [III.90]
Sometime he windes himselfe in knots as round as any Bowle.
Sometime he stretcheth out in length as straight as any beame.
Anon againe with violent brunt he rusheth like a streame
Encreast by rage of latefalne raine, and with his mightie sway
Beares downe the wood before his breast that standeth in his way.
Agenors sonne retiring backe doth with his Lions spoyle
Defend him from his fierce assaults, and makes him to recoyle
Aye holding at the weapon's poynt. The Serpent waxing wood
Doth crashe the steele betwene his teeth, and bites it till the blood
Dropt mixt with poyson from his mouth, did die the greene grasse blacke. ... [III.100]
But yet the wound was verie light bicause he writhed backe
And puld his head still from the stroke: and made the stripe to die
By giving way, untill that Cadmus following irefully
The stroke, with all his powre and might did through y throte him rive,
And naylde him too an Oke behind the which he eke did clive.
The Serpents waight did make the tree to bend. It grievde the tree
His bodie of the Serpents taile thus scourged for to bee.
While Cadmus wondred at the hugenesse of the vanquisht foe
Upon the sodaine came a voyce: from whence he could not know.
But sure he was he heard the voyce. Which said, Agenors sonne ... [III.110]
What gazest thus upon this Snake? the time will one day come
That thou thy selfe shalt be a Snake. He pale and wan for feare,
Had lost his speach: and ruffled up stiffe staring stood his heare.
Behold (mans helper at his neede) Dame Pallas gliding through
The vacant Ayre was straight at hand, and bade him take a plough
And cast the Serpents teeth in ground, as of the which should spring
Another people out of hand. He did in every thing
As Pallas bade, he tooke a plough, and earde a furrow low
And sowde the Serpents teeth whereof the foresaid folke should grow.
Anon (a wondrous thing too tell) the clods began to move, ... [III.120]
And from the forrow first of all the pikes appearde above,
Next rose up helmes with fethered crests, and then the Poldrens bright,
Successively the Curets whole, and all the armor right.
Thus grew up men like corne in field in rankes of battle ray
With shieldes and weapons in their hands to feight the field that day
Even so when stages are attirde against some solemne game,
With clothes of Arras gorgeously, in drawing up the same
The faces of the ymages doe first of all them show,
And then by peecemeale all the rest in order seemes too grow,
Untill at last they stand out full upon their feete bylow. ... [III.130]
Afrighted at this new found foes gan Cadmus for to take
Him to his weapons by and by resistance for to make.
Stay, stay thy selfe (cride one of them that late before were bred
Out of the ground) and meddle not with civill warres. This sed,
One of the brothers of that brood with launcing sworde he slue.
Another sent a dart at him, the which him overthrue.
The third did straight as much for him and made him yeelde the breath,
(The which he had receyvde but now) by stroke of forced death.
Likewise outraged all the rest untill that one by one
By mutuall stroke of civill warre dispatched everychone, ... [III.140]
This broode of brothers all behewen and weltred in their blood,
Lay sprawling on their mothers womb, the ground where erst they stood,
Save only five that did remaine. Of whom Echion led
By Pallas counsell, threw away the helmet from his head,
And with his brothers gan to treat attonement for to make.
The which at length (by Pallas helpe) so good successe did take,
That faithful friendship was confirmed and hand in hand was plight.
These afterward did well assist the noble Tyrian knight
In building of the famous towne that Phebus had behight.
Now Thebes stood in good estate, now Cadmus might thou say ... [III.150]
That when thy father banisht thee it was a luckie day.
To joyne aliance both with Mars and Venus was thy chaunce,
Whose daughter thou hadst tane to wife, who did thee much advaunce,
Not only through hir high renowne, but through a noble race
Of sonnes and daughters that she bare: whose children in like case
It was thy fortune for to see all men and women growne.
But ay the ende of every thing must marked be and knowne,
For none the name of blessednesse deserveth for to have,
Unlesse the tenor of this life last blessed to his grave.
Among so many prosprous happes that flowde with good successe, ... [III.160]
Thine eldest Nephew was a cause of care and sore distresse.
Whose head was armde with palmed hornes, whose own hounds in y wood
Did pull their master to the ground and fill them with his bloud.
But if you sift the matter well, ye shall not finde desart
But cruell fortune to have bene the cause of this his smart.
For who could doe with oversight? Great slaughter had bene made
Of sundrie sortes of savage beastes one morning, and the shade
Of things was waxed verie short. It was the time of day
That mid betweene the East and West the Sunne doth seeme to stay;
When as the Thebane stripling thus bespake his companie, ... [III.170]
Still raunging in the waylesse woods some further game to spie.
Our weapons and our toyles are moist and staind with bloud of Deere:
This day hath done inough as by our quarrie may appeare.
Assoone as with hir scarlet wheeles next morning bringeth light,
We will about our worke againe. But now Hiperion bright
Is in the middes of Heaven, and seares the fieldes with firie rayes.
Take up your toyles, and ceasse your worke, and let us go our wayes.
They did even so, and ceast their worke. There was a valley thicke
With Pinaple and Cipresse trees that armed be with pricke.
Gargaphie hight this shadie plot, it was a sacred place ... [III.180]
To chast Diana and the Nymphes that wayted on hir grace.
Within the furthest end thereof there was a pleasant Bowre
So vaulted with the leavie trees, the Sunne had there no powre:
Not made by hand nor mans devise, and yet no man alive,
A trimmer piece of worke than that could for his life contrive.
With flint and Pommy was it wallde by nature halfe about,
And on the right side of the same full freshly flowed out
A lively spring with Christall streame: whereof the upper brim
Was greene with grasse and matted herbes that smelled verie trim.
When Phebe felt hir selfe waxe faint, of following of hir game, ... [III.190]
It was hir custome for to come and bath hir in the same.
That day she having timely left hir hunting in the chace,
Was entred with hir troupe of Nymphes within this pleasant place.
She tooke hir quiver and hir bow the which she had unbent,
And eke hir Javelin to a Nymph that served that intent.
Another Nymph to take hir clothes among hir traine she chose,
Two losde hir buskins from hir legges and pulled of hir hose.
The Thebane Ladie Crocale more cunning than the rest,
Did trusse hir tresses handsomely which hung behind undrest.
And yet hir owne hung waving still. Then Niphe nete and cleene ... [III.200]
With Hiale glistring like the grass in beautie fresh and sheene,
And Rhanis clearer of hir skin than are the rainie drops,
And little bibling Phyale, and Pseke that pretie Mops,
Powrde water into vessels large to washe their Ladie with.
Now while she keepes this wont, behold, by wandring in the frith
He wist not wither (having staid his pastime till the morrow)
Comes Cadmus Nephew to this thicke: and entring in with sorrow
(Such was his cursed cruell fate) saw Phebe where she washt.
The Damsels at the sight of man quite of countnance dasht,
(Bicause they everichone were bare and naked to the quicke) ... [III.210]
Did beate their handes against their brests,and cast out such a shricke,
That all the wood did ring thereof: and clinging to their dame
Did all they could to hide both hir and eke themselves fro shame.
But Phebe was of personage so comly and so tall,
That by the middle of hir necke she overpeerd them all.
Such colour as appeares in Heaven by Phebus broken rayes
Directly shining on the Cloudes, or such as is alwayes
The colour of the Morning Cloudes before the Sunne doth show,
Such sanguine colour in the face of Phoebe gan to glowe
There standing naked in his sight. Who though she had hir gard ... [III.220]
Of Nymphes about hir: yet she turnde hir bodie from him ward.
And casting backe an angrie looke, like as she would have sent
An arrow at him had she had hir bow there readie bent:
So raught the water in hir hande, and for to wreake the spight,
Besprinckled all the heade and face of the unluckie Knight,
And thus forespake the heavie lot that should upon him light.
Now make thy vaunt among thy Mates, thou sawste Diana bare.
Tell if thou can: I give thee leave: tell heardly: doe not spare.
This done, she makes no further threates, but by and by doth spread
A payre of lively olde Harts hornes upon his sprinckled head. ... [III.230]
She sharpes his eares, she makes his necke both slender, long and lanke.
She turnes his fingers into feete, his armes to spindle shanke.
She wrappes him in a hairie hyde beset with speckled spottes,
And planteth in him fearefulnesse. And so away he trottes,
Full greatly wondring to him selfe what made him in that cace
To be so wight and swift of foote. But when he saw his face
And horned temples in the brooke, he would have cryde alas,
But as for then no kinde of speach out of his lippes could passe.
He sight and brayde: for that was then the speach that did remaine,
And downe the eyes that were not his, his bitter teares did raine. ... [III.240]
No part remayned (save his minde) of that he earst had beene.
What should he doe? turne home againe to Cadmus and the Queene?
Or hyde himselfe among the Woods? Of this he was afrayd,
And of the tother ill ashamde. While doubting thus he stayd:
His houndes espyde him where he was, and Blackfoote first of all
And Stalker speciall good of sent began aloud to call.
The latter was a hound of Crete, the other was of Spart.
Then all the kenell fell in round, and everie for his part,
Dyd follow freshly in the chase more swifter than the winde,
Spy, Eateal, Scalecliffe, three good houndes come all of Arcas kinde. ... [III.250]
Strong Kilbucke, currish Savage, Spring, and Hunter fresh of smell,
And Lightfoote who to lead a chase did beare away the bell.
Fierce Woodman hurte not long ago in hunting of a Bore
And Shepeheird woont to follow sheepe and neate to fielde afore.
And Laund a fell and eger bitch that had a Wolfe to Syre:
Another brach callde Greedigut with two hir Puppies by hir.
And Ladon gant as any Greewnd a hownd in Sycion bred,
Blab, Fleetewood, Patch whose flecked skin with sundrie spots was spred:
Wight, Bowman, Royster, Beautie faire and white as winters snow,
And Tawnie full of duskie haires that over all did grow, ... [III.260]
With lustie Ruffler passing all the resdue there in strength,
And Tempest best of footemanshipe in holding out at length.
And Cole, and Swift, and little Woolfe, as wight as any other,
Accompanide with a Ciprian hound that was his native brother,
And Snatch amid whose forehead stoode a starre as white as snowe,
The resdue being all as blacke and slicke as any Crowe,
And shaggie Rugge with other twaine that had a Syre of Crete,
And dam of Sparta: Tone of them callde Jollyboy, a great
And large flewd houd: the tother Chorle who ever gnoorring went,
And Ringwood with a shyrle loud mouth the which he freely spent, ... [III.270]
With divers mo whose names to tell it were but losse of tyme.
This fellowes over hill and dale in hope of pray doe clyme.
Through thick and thin and craggie cliffes where was no way to go,
He flyes through groundes where oftentymes he chased had ere tho,
Even from his owne folke is he faine (alas) to flee away.
He strayned oftentymes to speake, and was about to say,
I am Acteon: know your Lorde and Mayster sirs I pray.
But use of wordes and speach did want to utter forth his minde.
Their crie did ring through all the Wood redoubled with the winde.
First Slo did pinch him by the haunch, and next came Kildeere in, ... [III.280]
And Hylbred fastned on his shoulder, bote him through the skinne.
These came forth later than the rest, but coasting thwart a hill,
They did gainecope him as he came, and helde their Master still,
Untill that all the rest came in, and fastned on him too.
No part of him was free from wound. He could none other do
But sigh, and in the shape of Hart with voyce as Hartes are woont,
(For voyce of man was none now left to helpe him at the brunt)
By braying show his secret grief among the Mountaynes hie,
And kneeling sadly on his knees with dreerie teares in eye,
As one by humbling of himselfe that mercy seemde to crave, ... [III.290]
With piteous looke in stead of handes his head about to wave.
Not knowing that it was their Lord, the huntsmen cheere their hounds
With wonted noyse and for Acteon looke about the grounds.
They hallow who could lowdest crie still calling him by name
As though he were not there, and much his absence they do blame,
In that he came not to the fall, but slackt to see the game.
As often as they named him he sadly shook his head,
And faine he would have beene away thence in some other stead,
But there he was. And well he could have found in heart to see
His dogges fell deedes, so that to feele in place he had not bee. ... [III.300]
They hem him in on everie side, and in the shape of Stagge,
With greedie teeth and griping pawes their Lord in peeces dragge.
So fierce was cruell Phoebes wrath, it could not be alayde,
Till of his fault by bitter death the raunsome he had payde.
Much muttring was upon this fact. Some thought there was extended
A great deale more extremitie than neded. Some commended
Dianas doing: saying that it was but worthely
For safegarde of hir womanhod. Eche partie did applie
Good reasons to defende their case. Alone the wife of Jove
Of lyking or misliking it not all so greatly strove, ... [III.310]
As secretly rejoyst in heart that such a plague was light
On Cadmus linage: turning all the malice and the spight
Conceyved earst against the wench that Jove had fet fro Tyre.
Upon the kinred of the wench. And for to fierce hir ire,
Another thing cleane overthwart there cometh in the nicke:
The Ladie Semell great with childe by Jove as then was quicke.
Hereat she gan to fret and fume, and for to ease hir heart,
Which else would burst, she fell in hande with scolding out hir part.
And what a goodyeare have I woon by scolding erst? (she sed)
It is that arrant queane hir selfe, against whose wicked hed ... [III.320]
I must assay to give assault: and if (as men me call)
I be that Juno who in heaven beare greatest swing of all,
If in my hand I worthie bee to holde the royall Mace,
And if I be the Queene of Heaven and soveraigne of this place,
Or wife and sister unto Jove, (his sister well I know:
But as for wife that name is vayne, I serve but for a show,
To cover other privie skapes) I will confound that Whore.
Now (with a mischiefe) is she bagd and beareth out before
Hir open shame to all the world, and shortly hopes to bee
The mother of a sonne by Jove, the which hath hapt to mee ... [III.330]
Not passing once in all my time: so sore she doth presume
Upon hir beautie. But I trowe hir hope shall soone consume.
For never let me counted be for Saturns daughter more,
If by hir owne deare darling Jove on whom she trustes so sore,
I sende hir not to Styxes streame. This ended up she rose
And covered in golden cloud to Semelles house she goes.
And ere she sent away the cloud, she takes an olde wyves shape
With hoarie haire and riveled skinne, with slow and crooked gate.
As though she had the Palsey had hir feeble limmes did shake,
And eke she foltred in the mouth as often as she spake. ... [III.340]
She seem'd olde Beldame Beroe of Epidaure to bee,
This Ladie Semelles Nourse as right as though it beene shee.
So when that after mickle talke of purpose ministred,
Joves name was upned: by and by she gave a sigh and sed,
I wish with all my heart that Jove bee cause to thee of this.
But daughter deare I dreade the worst, I feare it be amisse.
For many Varlets under name of Gods, to serve their lust,
Have into undefiled beddes themselves full often thrust.
And though it bene the mightie Jove yet doth not that suffise,
Onlesse he also make the same apparant to our eyes. ... [III.350]
And if it be even verie hee, I say it doth behove,
He prove it by some open signe and token of his love.
And therefore pray him for to graunt that looke in what degree,
What order, fashion, sort and state he use to companie
With mightie Juno, in the same in everie poynt and cace
To all intents and purposes he thee likewise embrace,
And that he also bring with him his bright threeforked mace.
With such instructions Juno had enformed Cadmus Neece:
And she poore sielie simple soule immediately on this
Requested Jove to graunt a boone the which she did not name. ... [III.360]
Aske what thou wilt sweete heart (quoth he) thou shalt not misse the same,
And for to make thee sure hereof, the grisely Stygian Lake,
Which is the feare and God of Gods beare witnesse for thy sake.
She joying in hir owne mischaunce, not having any powre
To rule hir selfe, but making speede to hast hir fatall howre,
In which she through hir Lovers helpe should worke hir own decay,
Sayd: Such as Juno findeth you when you and she doe play
The games of Venus, such I pray thee shew thy selfe to mee
In everie case. The God would faine have stopt hir mouth. But shee
Had made such hast that out it was. Which made him sigh full sore, ... [III.370]
For neyther she could then unwish the thing she wisht before,
Nor he revoke his solemne oth. Wherefore with sorie hart
And heavy countnance by and by to Heaven he doth depart,
And makes to follow after him with looke full grim and stoure
The flakie clouds all grisly blacke, as when they threat a shoure.
To which he added mixt with winde a fierce and flashing flame,
With drie and dreadfull thunderclaps and lightning to the same
Of deadly unavoyded dynt. And yet as much as may
He goes about his vehement force and fiercenesse to allay.
He doth not arme him with the fire with which he did remove ... [III.380]
The Giant with the hundreth handes Typhoeus from above:
It was too cruell and too sore to use agaynst his Love.
The Cyclops made an other kinde of lightning farre more light,
Wherein they put much lesse of fire, lesse fiercenesse, lesser might.
It hight in Heaven the second Mace. Jove armes himselfe with this,
And enters into Cadmus house where Semelles chamber is.
She being mortall was too weake and feeble to withstande
Such troublous tumultes of the Heavens: and therefore out of hande
Was burned in hir Lovers armes. But yet he tooke away
His infant from the mothers wombe unperfect as it lay, ... [III.390]
And (if a man may credit it) did in his thigh it sowe,
Where byding out the mothers tyme, it did to ripenesse grow.
And when the time of birth was come, his Aunt the Ladie Ine
Did nourse him for a while by stealth and kept him trym and fine.
The Nymphes of Nysa afterwarde did in their bowres him hide,
And brought him up with Milke till tyme he might abrode be spyde.
Now while these things were done on earth, and that by fatal doome
The twice born Bacchus had a tyme to mannes estate to come:
They say that Jove disposde to myrth as he and Juno sate
A drinking Nectar after meate in sport and pleasant rate, ... [III.400]
Did fall a jeasting with his wife, and saide: a greater pleasure
In Venus games ye women have than men beyonde all measure.
She answerde no. To trie the truth, they both of them agree
The wise Tyresias in this case indifferent judge to bee,
Who both the man and womans joyes by tryall understood.
For finding once two mightie Snakes engendring in a Wood,
He strake them overthwart the backs, by meanes thereof beholde
(As straunge a thing to be of truth as ever yet was tolde)
He being made a woman straight, seven winter lived so.
The eight he finding them againe did say unto them tho: ... [III.410]
And if to strike ye have such powre as for to turne their shape
That are the givers of the stripe, before you hence escape,
One stripe now will I lende you more. He strake them as beforne
And straight returnd his former shape in which he first was borne.
Tyresias therefore being tane to judge this jesting strife,
Gave sentence on the side of Jove. The which the Queene his wife
Did take a great deale more to heart than needed, and in spight
To wreake hir teene upon hir Judge, bereft him of his sight.
But Jove (for to the Gods it is unleeful to undoe
The things which other of the Gods by any meanes have doe) ... [III.420]
Did give him sight in things to come for losse of sight of eye,
And so his grievous punishment with honour did supplie.
By meanes whereof within a while in Citie, fielde, and towne
Through all the coast of Aony was bruited his renowne.
And folke to have their fortunes read that dayly did resorte,
Were aunswerde so as none of them could give him misreporte.
The first that of his soothfast wordes has proufe in all the Realme,
Was freckled Lyriop, whom sometime surprised in his streame,
The floud Cephisus did enforce. This Lady bare a sonne
Whose beautie at his verie birth might justly love have wonne. ... [III.430]
Narcissus did she call his name. Of whom the Prophet sage
Demaunded if the childe should live to many yeares of age,
Made aunswere, yea full long, so that him selfe he doe not know.
The Soothsayers wordes seemde long but vaine, untill the end did show
His saying to be true in deede by straungenesse of the rage,
And straungeness of the kinde of death that did abridge his age.
For when yeares three times five and one he fully lyved had,
So that he seemde to stande betweene the state of man and Lad,
The hearts of divers trim yong men his beautie gan to move,
And many a Ladie fresh and faire was taken in his love. ... [III.440]
But in that grace of Natures gift such passing pride did raigne,
That to be toucht of man or Mayde he wholy did disdaine.
A babling Nymph that Echo hight: who hearing others talke,
By no meanes can restraine hir tongue but that it needes must walke,
Nor of hir selfe hath powre to ginne to speake to any wight,
Espyde him dryving into toyles the fearefull stagges of flight.
This Echo was a body then and not an onely voyce,
Yet of hir speach she had that time no more than now the choyce,
That is to say of many wordes the latter to repeate.
The cause thereof was Junos wrath. For when that with the feate ... [III.450]
She might have often taken Jove in daliance with his Dames,
And that by stealth and unbewares in middes of all his games:
This elfe would with hir tatling talke deteine hir by the way,
Untill that Jove had wrought his will and they were fled away.
The which when Juno did perceyve, she said with wrathfull mood,
This tongue that hath deluded me shall doe thee little good:
For of thy speech but simple use hereafter shalt thou have.
The deede it selfe did straight confirme the threatnings that she gave.
Yet Echo of the former talke doth double oft the end
And backe againe with just report the wordes earst spoken sende. ... [III.460]
Now when she saw Narcissus stray about the Forrest wyde,
She waxed warme and step for step fast after him she hyde.
The more she followed after him and neerer that she came,
That hoter ever did she waxe as neerer to hir flame.
Lyke as the lively Brimstone doth which dipt about a match,
And put but softly to the fire, the flame doth lightly catch.
O Lord how often would she faine (if nature would have let)
Entreated him with gentle wordes some favour for to get?
But nature would not suffer hir nor give hir leave to ginne.
Yet (so farre forth as she by graunt at natures hande could winne) ... [III.470]
As readie with attentive eare she harkens for some sounde,
Whereto she might replie hir wordes, from which she is not bounde.
By chaunce the stripling being strayde from all his companie,
Sayde: is there any bodie nie? straight Echo answerde: I.
Amazde he castes his eye aside, and looketh round about,
And come (that all the Forrest roong) aloud he calleth out.
And come (sayth she:) he looketh backe, and seeing no man followe,
Why fliste, he cryeth once againe: and she the same doth hallowe.
He still persistes, and wondring much what kinde of thing it was
From which that answering voyce by turne so duely seemde to passe, ... [III.480]
Sayd: let us joyne. she (by hir will desirous to have said,
In fayth with none more willingly at any time or stead)
Sayd: let us joyne. and standing somewhat in hir owne conceit,
Upon these wordes she left the Wood, and forth she yeedeth streit,
To coll the lovely necke for which she longed had so much.
He runnes his way, and will not be imbraced of no such.
And sayth: I first will die ere thou shalt take of me thy pleasure.
She answerde nothing else thereto, but take of me thy pleasure.
Now when she saw hir selfe thus mockt, she gate hir to the Woods,
And hid hir head for verie shame among the leaves and buddes. ... [III.490]
And ever sence she lyves alone in dennes and hollow Caves.
Yet stacke hir love still to hir heart, through which she dayly raves
The more for sorrow of repulse. Through restlesse carke and care
Hir bodie pynes to skinne and bone, and waxeth wonderous bare.
The bloud doth vanish into ayre from out of all hir veynes,
And nought is left but voyce and bones: the voyce yet still remaynes:
Hir bones they say were turnde to stones. From thence she lurking still
In Woods, will never shewe hir head in field nor yet on hill.
Yet is she heard of every man: it is hir onely sound,
And nothing else that doth remayne alive above the ground. ... [III.500]
Thus had he mockt this wretched Nymph and many mo beside,
That in the waters, Woods, and groves, or Mountaynes did abide.
Thus had he mocked many men. Of which one, miscontent
To see himselfe deluded so, his handes to Heaven up bent,
And sayd: I pray to God he may once feele fierce Cupids fire
As I doe now, and yet not joy the things he doth desire.
The Goddesse Ramnuse (who doth wreake on wicked people take)
Assented to his just request for ruth and pities sake.
There was a Spring withouten mudde as silver cleare and still,
Which neyther sheepeheirds, nor the Goates that fed upon the hill. ... [III.510]
Nor other cattell troubled had, nor savage beast had styrd,
Nor braunch, nor sticke, nor leafe of tree, nor any foule nor byrd.
The moysture fed and kept ay fresh the grasse that grew about,
And with their leaves the trees did keepe the heate of Phoebus out.
The stripling wearie with the heate and hunting in the chase,
And much delighted with the spring and coolenesse of the place,
Did lay him downe upon the brimme: and as he stooped lowe
To staunche his thurst, another thurst of worse effect did growe.
For as he dranke, he chaunst to spie the Image of his face,
The which he did immediately with fervent love embrace. ... [III.520]
He feedes a hope without cause why. For like a foolishe noddie
He thinkes the shadow that he sees, to be a lively boddie.
Astraughted like an ymage made of Marble stone he lyes,
There gazing on his shadow still with fixed staring eyes.
Stretcht all along upon the ground, it doth him good to see
his ardent eyes which like two starres full bright and shyning bee,
And eke his fingars, fingars such as Bacchus might beseeme,
And haire that one might worthely Apollos haire it deeme.
His beardlesse chinne and yvorie necke, and eke the perfect grace
Of white and red indifferently bepainted in his face. ... [III.530]
All these he woondreth to beholde, for which (as I doe gather)
Himselfe was to be wondred at, or to be pitied rather.
He is enamored of himselfe for want of taking heede.
And where he lykes another thing, he lykes himselfe in deede.
He is the partie whome he wooes, and suter that doth wooe,
He is the flame that settes on fire, and thing that burneth tooe.
O Lord how often did he kisse that false deceitfull thing?
How often did he thrust his armes midway into the spring,
To have embraste the necke he saw and could not catch himselfe?
He knowes not what it was he sawe. And yet the foolishe elfe ... [III.540]
Doth burne in ardent love thereof. The verie selfe the same thing
That doth bewitch and blinde his eyes, encreaseth all his sting,
Thou foundling thou, why doest thou raught the fickle image so?
The thing thou seekest is not there. And if aside thou go,
The thing thou lovest straight is gone. It is none other matter
That thou dost see, than of thy selfe the shadow in the water.
The thing is nothing of it selfe: with thee it doth abide,
With thee it would departe if thou withdrew thy selfe aside.
No care of meate could draw him thence, nor yet desire of rest.
But lying flat against the ground, and leaning on his brest, ... [III.550]
With greedie eyes he gazeth still uppon the falced face,
And through his sight is wrought his bane. Yet for a little space
He turnes and settes himselfe upright, and holding up his hands
With piteous voyce unto the wood that round about him stands,
Cryes out and ses: alas ye Woods, and was there ever any,
That loovde so cruelly as I? you know: for unto many
A place of harbrough have you beene, and fort of refuge strong.
Can you remember any one in all your tyme so long,
That hath so pinde away as I? I see and am full faine,
Howbeit that I like and see I cannot yet attaine: ... [III.560]
So great a blindnesse in my heart through doting love doth raigne.
And for to spight me more withall, it is no journey farre,
No drenching Sea, no Mountaine hie, no wall, no locke, no barre,
It is but even a little droppe that keepes us two asunder.
He would be had. For looke how oft I kisse the water under,
So oft againe with upwarde mouth he ryseth towarde mee,
A man would thinke to touch at least I should yet able bee.
It is a trifle in respect that lettes us of our love.
What wight soever that thou art come hither up above.
O pierlesse piece, why dost thou mee thy lover thus delude? ... [III.570]
Or whither fliste thou of thy friende thus earnestly pursude?
I wis I neyther am so fowle nor yet so growne in yeares,
That in this wise thou shouldst me shoon. To have me to their Feeres,
The Nymphes themselves have sude ere this. And yet (as should appeere)
Thou dost pretende some kinde of hope of friendship by the cheere.
For when I stretch mine armes to thee, thou stretchest thine likewise,
And if I smile thou smilest too: and when that from mine eyes
The teares doe drop, I well perceyve the water stands in thine.
Like gesture also dost thou make to everie beck of mine.
And as by moving of thy sweete and lovely lippes I weene, ... [III.580]
Thou speakest words although mine eares conceive not what they beene.
It is my selfe I well perceyve, it is mine Image sure,
That in this sort deluding me, this furie doth procure.
I am inamored of my selfe, I doe both set on fire,
And am the same that swelteth too, through impotent desire.
What shall I doe? be woode or woo? whome shall I woo therefore?
The thing I seeke is in my selfe, my plentie makes me poore.
O would to God I for a while might from my bodie part.
This wish is straunge to heare a Lover wrapped all in smart,
To wish away the thing the which he loveth as his heart. ... [III.590]
My sorrowe takes away my strength. I have not long to live,
But in the floure of youth must die. To die it doth not grieve,
For that by death shall come the ende of all my griefe and paine.
I woulde this yongling whome I love might lenger life obtaine:
For in one soule shall now delay we stedfast Lovers twaine.
This said in rage he turnes againe unto the foresaide shade,
And rores the water with the teares and sloubring that he made,
That through his troubling of the Well his ymage gan to fade.
Which when he saw to vanish so, Oh whither dost thou flie?
Abide I pray thee heartely, aloud he gan to crie. ... [III.600]
Forsake me not so cruelly that loveth thee so deere,
But give me leave a little while my dazled eyes to cheere
With sight of that which for to touch is utterly denide,
Thereby to feede my wretched rage and furie for a tide.
As in this wise he made his mone, he stripped off his cote
And with his fist outragiously his naked stomacke smote.
A ruddie colour where he smote rose on his stomacke sheere,
Lyke Apples which doe partly white and striped red appeere.
Or as the clusters ere the grapes to ripenesse fully come:
An Orient purple here and there beginnes to grow on some. ... [III.610]
Which things asssoone as in the spring he did beholde againe,
He could no longer beare it out. But fainting straight for paine,
As lith and supple waxe doth melt against the burning flame,
Or morning dewe against the Sunne that glareth on the same:
Even so by piecemale being spent and wasted through desire,
Did he consume and melt away with Cupids secret fire.
His lively hue of white and red, his cheerefulnesse and strength
And all the things that lyked him did wanze away at length.
So that in fine remayned not the bodie which of late
The wretched Echo loved so. Who when she sawe his state, ... [III.620]
Although in heart she angrie were, and mindefull of his pride,
Yet ruing his unhappie case, as often as he cride
Alas, she cride alas likewise with shirle redoubled sound.
And when he beate his breast, or strake his feete agaynst the ground,
She made like noyse of clapping too. these are the wordes that last
Out of his lippes beholding still his woonted ymage past.
Alas sweete boy belovde in vaine, farewell. And by and by
With sighing sound the selfe same wordes the Echo did reply.
With that he layde his wearie head against the grassie place,
And death did cloze his gazing eyes that woondred at the grace ... [III.630]
And beautie which did late adorne their Masters heavenly face.
And afterward when into Hell receyved was his spright,
He goes me to the Well of Styx, and there both day and night
Standes tooting on his shadow still as fondely as before.
The water Nymphes his sisters wept and wayled for him sore,
And on his bodie strowde their haire clipt off and shorne therefore.
The Wood nymphes also did lament. And Echo did rebound
To every sorrowfull noyse of theirs with like lamenting sound.
The fire was made to burne the corse, and waxen Tapers light.
A Herce to lay the bodie on with solemne pompe was dight. ... [III.640]
But as for bodie none remaind: In stead thereof they found
A yellow floure with milke white leaves new sprong upon the ground.
This matter all Achaia through did spreade the Prophets fame:
That every where of just desert renowned was his name.
But Penthey olde Echions sonne (who proudely did disdaine
Both God and man) did laughe to scorne the Prophets words as vaine,
Upbraiding him most spitefully with loosing of his sight,
And with the fact for which he lost fruition of this light.
The goode old father (for these words his pacience much did move)
Said: O how happie shouldest thou be and blessed from above, ... [III.650]
If thou wert blinde as well as I, so that thou might not see
The sacred rytes of Bacchus band. For sure the time will bee,
And that full shortely (as I gesse) that hither shall resort
Another Bacchus Semelles sonne, whom if thou not support
With pompe and honour like a God, thy carcasse shall be tattred,
And in a thousand places eke about the Woods be scattred.
And for to reade thee what they are that shall perfourme the deede,
It is thy mother and thine Auntes that thus shall make thee bleede.
I know it shall so come to passe, for why thou shalt disdaine,
To honour Bacchus as a God: and then thou shalt with paine ... [III.660]
Feele how that blinded as I am, I sawe for thee too much.
As old Tiresias did pronounce these wordes and other such,
Echions sonne did trouble him. His wordes prove true in deede,
For as the Prophet did forespeake, so fell it out with speede.
Anon this newefound Bacchus commes: the woods and fieldes rebound,
With noyse of shouts and howling out, and such confused sound.
The folke runne flocking out by heapes, men, Mayds, and wives togither
The noble men and rascall sorte ran gadding also thither,
The Orgies of this unknowne God full fondely to performe,
The which when Penthey did perceyve, he gan to rage and storme, ... [III.670]
And sayde unto them. O ye ympes of Mars his snake by kinde,
What ayleth you? what fiend of hell doth thus enrage your minde?
Hath tinking sound of pottes and pannes, hath noyse of crooked horne?
Have fonde illusions such a force, that them whom heretoforne
No arming sworde, no bloudie trumpe, no men in battail ray
Coulde cause to shrinke, no sheepish shriekes of simple women fray?
And drunken woodnesse wrought by wine and roughts of filthie freakes?
And sound of toying timpanes dauntes and quite their courage breakes?
Shall I at you yee auncient men which from the towne of Tyre,
To bring your housholde Gods by Sea, in safetie did aspyre, ... [III.680]
And setled them within this place the which ye nowe doe yeelde
In bondage quite without all force and fighting in the fielde:
Or woonder at you yonger sorte approching unto mee
More neare in courage and in yeares? whome meete it were to see
With speare and not with thirse in hande, with glitt'ring helme on hed,
And not with leaves? Now call to minde of whome ye all are bred,
And take the stomackes of that Snake, which being one alone,
Right stoutly in his owne defence confounded many one.
He for his harbrough and his spring his lyfe did nobly spend.
Doe you no more but take a heart your Countrie to defend. ... [III.690]
He put to death right valeant Knightes. Your battaile is with such
As are but Meicocks in effect: and yet ye doe so much
In conquering them, that by the deede the olde renowne ye save,
Which from your fathers by discent this present time ye have.
If fatall destnies doe forbid that Thebe long shall stande,
Would God that men with Canon shot might raze it out of hande.
Would God the noyse of fire and sworde did in our hearing sound:
For then in this our wretchednesse there could no fault be found.
Then might we justly waile our case that all the world might see
Wee should not neede of sheading teares ashamed for to bee. ... [III.700]
But now our towne is taken by a naked beardelesse boy,
Who doth not in the feates of armes nor horse nor armour joy.
But for to moyst his haire with Mirrhe, and put on garlands gay,
And in soft Purple silke and golde his bodie to aray.
But put to you your helping hande, and straight without delay
I will compell him poynt by poynt his lewdnesse to bewray,
Both in usurping Joves high name in making him his sonne,
And forging of these Ceremonies lately now begonne.
Hath King Acrisius heart inough this fondling for to hate,
That makes himselfe to be a God? and for to shut the gate ... [III.710]
Of Argus at his comming there? and shall this rover make
King Penthey and this noble towne of Thebe thus to quake?
Go quickly sirs (these wordes he spake unto his servaunts) go
And bring the Captaine hither bound with speede, why stay ye so?
His Grandsire Cadmus, Athamus and others of his kinne
Reproved him by gentle meanes: but nothing could they winne.
The more intreatance that they made, the fiercer was he still.
The more his friendes did go about to breake him of his will,
The more they did provoke his wrath, and set his rage on fire.
They made him worse in that they sought to bridle his desire. ... [III.720]
So have I seene a brooke ere this, where nothing let the streame,
Runne smooth with little noyse or none: but where as any beame
Or cragged stones did let his course, and make him for to stay:
It went more fiercely from the stoppe with fomie wroth away.
Beholde all bloudy come his men, and straight he then demaunded
Where Bacchus was, and why they had not done as he commaunded?
Sir (aunswerde they) we saw him not, but this same fellow heere
A chiefe companion in his traine and worker in this geere,
Wee tooke by force: and therewithall presented to their Lord
A certaine man of Tirrhene lande, his handes fast bound with cord, ... [III.730]
Whome they, frequenting Bacchus rites had found but late before.
A grim and cruell looke which yre did make to seeme more sore,
Did Penthey cast upon the man. And though he scarcely stayd
From putting him to tormentes strait: O wretched man (he sayde)
Who by thy worthie death shalt be a sample unto other,
Declare to me the names of thee, thy father and thy mother,
And in what Countrie thou wert borne, and what hath caused thee,
Of these straunge rites and sacrifice, a follower for to bee.
He voyd of feare made aunswere thus, Acetis is my name:
Of Parentes but of lowe degree in Lidy land I came. ... [III.740]
No ground for painfull Oxe to till, no sheepe to beare me wooll
My father left me: no nor horse, nor Asse, nor Cow nor Booll.
God wote he was but poore himselfe. With line and bayted hook
The frisking fishes in the pooles upon his Reede he tooke.
His handes did serve in steade of landes, his substance was his craft.
Now have I made you true accompt of all that he me laft,
As well of ryches as of trades, in which I was his heire
And successour. For when that death bereft him use of aire,
Save water he me nothing left. It is the thing alone
Which for my lawfull heritage I clayme, and other none. ... [III.750]
Soone after (because that loth I was to ay abide
In that poore state) did learne a ship by cunning hande to guide,
And for to knowe the raynie signe, that hight th' Olenien gote,
Which with hir milke did nourish Jove. And also I did note
The Pleiads and the Hiads moyst, and eke the siely Plough,
With all the dwellings of the winds that made the seas so rough,
And eke such Havens as are meete to harbrough vessels in,
With everie starre and heavenly signe that guides to shipmen bin.
Now as by chaunce I late ago did toward Dilos sayle,
I came on coast of Scios Ile, and seeing day to fayle, ... [III.760]
Tooke harbrough there and went a lande. Assoone as that the night
Was spent, and morning gan to peere with ruddie glaring light,
I rose and bad my companie fresh water fetch aboord.
And pointing them the way that led directly to the foorde,
I went me to a little hill, and viewed round about
To see what weather we were lyke to have ere setting out.
Which done, I cald my watermen and all my Mates togither,
And willde them all to go a boord my selfe first going thither.
Loe here we are (Opheltes sayd) (he was the Maysters Mate)
And (as he thought) a bootie found in desert fields a late, ... [III.770]
He dragd a boy upon his hande that for his beautie sheene,
A mayden rather than a boy appeared for to beene.
This childe, as one forelade with wine, and dreint with drousie sleepe
Did reele, as though he scarcely coulde himselfe from falling keepe.
I markt his countnance, weede, and pace, no inckling could I see,
By which I might conjecture him a mortall wight to bee.
I thought, and to my fellows sayd: what God I can not tell,
But in this bodie that we see some Godhead sure doth dwell.
What God so ever that thou art, thy favour to us showe,
And in our labours us assist, and pardone these also. ... [III.780]
Pray for thy selfe and not for us (quoth Dictys by and by.)
A nimbler fellow for to climbe upon the Mast on hie
And by the Cable downe to slide, there was not in our keele.
Swart Melanth patrone of the shippe did like his saying weele.
So also did Alcimedon: and so did Libys too,
And black Epopeus eke whose charge it did belong unto
To see the Rowers at their tymes their dueties duely do.
And so did all the rest of them: so sore mennes eyes were blinded
Where covetousenesse of filthie gaine is more than reason minded.
Well sirs (quoth I) but by your leave ye shall not have it so: ... [III.790]
I will not suffer sacriledge within this shippe to go.
For I have here the most to doe. And with that worde I stept
Uppon the Hatches, all the rest from entrance to have kept.
The rankest Ruffian of the route that Lycab had to name,
(Who for a murder being late driven out of Tuscane came
To me for succor) waxed woode, and with his sturdie fist
Did give me such a churlish blow bycause I did resist,
That over board he had me sent, but that with much ado
I caught the tackling in my hand and helde me fast thereto.
The wicket Varlets had a sport to see me handled so. ... [III.800]
Then Bacchus (for it Bacchus was) as though he had but tho
Bene waked with their noyse from sleepe, and that his drousie braine
Discharged of the wine, began to gather sence againe
Said: what a doe? what noyse is this? how came I here I pray?
Sirs tell me whether you doe meane to carie me away.
Feare not my boy (the Patrone sayd) no more but tell me where
Thou doest desire to go a lande, and we will set thee there.
To Naxus ward (quoth Bacchus tho) set ship upon the fome.
There would I have you harbrough take, for Naxus is my home.
Like perjurde Caitifs, by the Sea and all the Gods thereof, ... [III.810]
They falsly sware it should be so, and therewithall in scoffe
They bade me hoyse up saile and go. Upon the righter hand
I cast about to fetch the winde, for so did Naxus stand.
What means? art mad? Opheltes cride, and therewithall begun
A feare of loosing of their pray through every man to run.
The greater part with head and hand a signe did to me make,
And some did whisper in mine eare the left hand way to take.
I was amazde and said: take charge henceforth who will for me:
For of your craft and wickednesse I will no further be.
Then fell they to reviling me, and all the route gan grudge: ... [III.820]
Of which Ethalion said in scorne: by like in you Sir snudge
Consistes the savegard of us all, and wyth that word he takes
My roume, and leaving Naxus quite, to other countries makes.
The God then dalying with these mates, as though he had at last
Begun to smell their suttle craft, out of the foredecke cast
His eye upon the Sea, and then as though he seemde to weepe,
Sayd: sirs to bring me on this coast ye doe not promise keepe,
I see that this is not the land the which I did request.
For what occasion in this sort deserve I to be drest?
What commendation can you win, or praise thereby receive, ... [III.830]
If men a Lad, if many one ye compasse to deceyve?
I wept and sobbed all this while, the wicked villaines laught,
And rowed forth with might and maine, as though they had bene straught.
Now even by him (for sure than he in all the worlde so wide
There is no God more neare at hande at every time and tide),
I sweare unto you that the things the which I shall declare,
Like as they seeme incredible, even so most true they are.
The ship stoode still amid the Sea as in a dustie docke.
They wondring at this miracle, and making but a mocke,
Persist in beating with their Ores, and on with all their sayles: ... [III.840]
To make their Galley to remove, no Art nor labor fayles.
But Ivie troubled so their Ores that forth they could not row:
And both with Beries and with leaves their sailes did overgrow.
And he himselfe with clustred grapes about his temples round,
Did shake a Javeling in his hand that round about was bound
With leaves of Vines: and at his feete there seemed for to couch
Of Tygers, Lynx, and Panthers shapes most ougly for to touch.
I cannot tell you whether feare or woodnesse were the cause,
But every person leapeth up and from his labor drawes.
And there one Medon first of all began to waxen blacke, ... [III.850]
And having lost his former shape did take a courbed backe.
What Monster shall we have of thee (quoth Licab) and with that
This Licabs chappes did waxen wide, his nosetrils waxed flat,
His skin waxt tough and scales thereon began anon to grow.
And Libis as he went about the Ores away to throw,
Perceived how his hands did shrinke and were become so short,
That now for finnes and not for hands he might them well report.
Another as he would have claspt his arm about the corde:
Had nere an arme, and so bemaimd in bodie, over boord
He leapeth downe among the waves, and forked is his tayle ... [III.860]
As are the hornes of Phebes face when halfe hir light doth fayle.
They leape about and sprinkle up much water on the ship,
One while they swim above, and downe againe anon they slip.
They fetch their friskes as in a daunce, and wantonly they writhe
Now here now there among the waves their bodies bane and lithe.
And with their wide and hollow nose the water in they snuffe,
And by their noses out againe as fast they doe it puffe.
Of twentie persons (for our ship so many men did beare)
I only did remaine nigh straught and trembling still for feare.
The God could scarce recomfort me, and yet he said: Go too, ... [III.870]
Feare not but saile to Dia ward. His will I gladly doe.
And so as soone as I came there with right devout intent,
His Chaplaine I became. And thus his Orgies I frequent.
Thou makste a processe verie long (quoth Penthey) to th' intent
That (choler being coolde by time) mine anger might relent.
But Sirs (he spake it to his men) go take him by and by,
With cruell torments out of hand goe cause him for to die.
Immediately they led away Acetes out of sight,
And put him into prison strong from which there was no flight.
But while the cruell instruments of death as sword and fire ... [III.880]
Were in preparing wherewithall t'accomplish Pentheys yre,
It is reported that the doores did of their owne accorde
Burst open and his chaines fall off. And yet this cruell Lorde
Persisteth fiercer than before, not bidding others go
But goes himself unto the hill Cytheron, which as tho
To Bacchus being consecrate did ring of chaunted songs,
And other loud confused sounds of Bacchus drunken throngs.
And even when the bloudie Trumpe doth to the battell sound,
The lustie horse streight neying out bestirres him on the ground,
And taketh courage thereupon t'assaile his emnie proud: ... [III.890]
Even so when Penthey heard afarre the noyse and howling loud
That Bacchus franticke folke did make, it set his heart on fire,
And kindled fiercer than before the sparks of settled ire.
There is a goodly plaine about the middle of the hill,
Environd in with Woods, where men may view eche way at will.
Here looking on these holie rites with lewde prophaned eyes
King Pentheys mother first of all hir foresaid sonne espies,
And like a Bedlem first of all she doth upon him runne,
And with hir Javeling furiously she first doth wound hir sonne.
Come hither sisters come, she cries, here is that mighty Bore, ... [III.900]
Here is the Bore that stroyes our fields, him will I strike therefore.
With that they fall upon him all as though they had bene mad,
And clustring all upon a heape fast after him they gad.
He quakes and shakes: his words are now become more meeke and colde:
He now condemnes his owne default, and sayes he was too bolde.
And wounded as he was he cries: Helpe, Aunt Autonoe,
Now for Acteons blessed soule some mercie show to me.
She wist not who Acteon was, but rent without delay
His right hand off: and Ino tare his tother hand away.
To lift unto his mother tho the wretch had nere an arme: ... [III.910]
But shewing hir his maimed corse, and woundes yet bleeding warme,
O mother see, he sayes: with that Agave howleth out:
And writhed with hir necke awrie, and shooke hir haire about.
And holding from his bodie torne his head in bloudie hands,
She cries: O fellowes in this deede our noble conquest stands.
No sooner could the winde have blowen the rotten leaves from trees,
When Winters frost hath bitten them, then did the hands of these
Most wicked women Pentheys limmes from one another teare.
The Thebanes being now by this example brought in feare,
Frequent this newfound sacrifice, and with sweete frankinsence ... [III.920]
God Bacchus Altars lode with gifts in every place doe cense.
FINIS TERTII LIBRI.
Length: 10,445 words
Golding Ovid Book III: The Hounds of Acteaon
In a pamphlet Harts, Hounds and Hedingham Elisabeth Sears, with the assistance of research into land deeds and transfers furnished by Charles Bird, provides evidence of a relationship between the names of Actaeon's pack and the environs of the Earl of Oxford's Castle Hedingham.
Translations from Anthony Brian Taylor of the Swansea Institute and from Robert Graves, The Greek Myths.
Golding (modern sp)
1. Blackfoot (Ovid's Pack Melampus [black foot])
2. Stalker (Ovid's Pack Ichnobates [keen, clever])
3. Spy (Ovid's Pack Dorceus)
4. Eatall (Ovid's Pack Pamphagus [eat up, consume])
5. Scalecliff (Ovid's Pack Oribasus [climber?])
6. Killbuck (Nebrophonus [fawn killer])
7. Savage (Ovid's Pack -- none)
8. Spring (Ovid's Pack Laelaps [hurricane]
Oxford property assn: A wood listed in the tithe map in Sybie Hedingham. Parcel #698.
9. Hunter (Ovid's Pack Theron)
Oxford property assn: Hunter's Wood, in sight of the Castle.
10. Lightfoot (Ovid's pack Pterelas [launcher of feathers])
Oxford property assn: A wood name at Southey Green, in sight of the Castle.
11. Woodman (Ovid's Pack Hylaeus [of the woods])
12. Shepherd (Ovid's Pack Poemenis)
13. Laund (Pasture) (Ovid's Pack Nape)
14. Greedygut (Ovid's Pack Harpyia [snatcher?])
15. 1st puppy
16. 2d puppy
17. Ladon (Ovid's Pack Ladon [grabber; Graves embracer])
18. Blab (Ovid's Pack Canache [barking])
19. Fleetwood (Ovid's Pack Dromas)
Oxford property assn: Adjacent parish of Sibie Hedingham, most of which DeVere property.
20. Patch (Ovid's Pack Sticte)
21. White (Ovid's Pack Leucon). See note.
22. Bowman (Ovid's Pack Tigride)
Oxford property assn: Bowman field (Beaumont). #174
23. Roister (Ovid's Pack Alce)
Oxford property assn: Roister's Wood, in the parish of Sibie Hedingham.
24. Beauty (Ovid's Pack -- none). But may also refer to Leucon/fair. See note for 21, 24.
25. Tawny (Ovid's Pack Asbolus)
26. Ruffler (Ovid's Pack Lacon)
27. Tempest (Ovid's pack Aello [storm foot])
28. Cole (Ovid's Pack -- none)
Oxford property assn: Cole field, #746.
29. Swift (Ovid's Pack Thous [swift])
30. Wolf (Ovid's Pack Lycisce)
31. His brother (Ovid's Pack Cyprius)
32. Snatch (Ovid's Pack Harpalus [grasping])
33. Rug (Ovid's Pack Lachne)
34. Jollyboy (Ovid's Pack Lebros [gluttonous, forceful])
35. Chorle (Ovid's Pack Agridos [fierce tooth])
36. Ringwood (Ovid's Pack Hylactor [barker])
Oxford property assn: Ringewood, a 26-acre parcel in sight of Hedingham Keep. #80
37. Slo (Ovid's Pack Melanchaetes)
38. Killdeer (Ovid's Pack Theridamas)
39. Hillbred (Ovid's Pack Oresitrophes)
6. Killbuck (Rouse) is named "Bilbucke" by Nims.
7. Savage seems to be a Golding addition, perhaps another aspect of "Hunter" (fierce Theron).
8. Laelops is also the name of the dog given by Procris to Cephalus.
21. Although "wight" is traditionally translated as "white" and assigned to Ovid's "Leucon", This is an unusual spelling of "white" in Golding's Ovid. In other lines in Book III "white" is spelled "white", while "wight" is given the meaning "speedy" or "living being" (both used throughout Golding's Ovid). since No. 24 can also be assigned to "Leucon", it is possible that alternatively "wight" in the case of No. 21, could be a new dog "Speedy" (as in limber, athletic).
24. Beauty, an addition, may be another aspect of Leucon.
28. Cole, another addition.
36. Ringwood (Rouse) is named "Kingwood" by Nims. In the Oxfordian (Vol. II, Oct. 1999, p. 124) Robert Brazil points out that "Hylactor" (bark, growl) may , with the word "hyle" (wood),
combine two meanings to suggest the phrase "barker in the wood".
Continue on to Metamorphoses Book 4
Metamorphoses Book 5
Metamorphoses Book 6
Metamorphoses Book 7
Metamorphoses Book 8
Metamorphoses Book 9
Metamorphoses Book 10
Metamorphoses Book 11
Metamorphoses Book 12
Metamorphoses Book 13
Metamorphoses Book 14
Metamorphoses Book 15
Go Back to Metamorphoses Main Page - Epistle & Preface
Go Back to Metamorphoses - Book 1
Go Back to Metamorphoses - Book 2
Go Back to Elizabethan Authors HOME PAGE
The Elizabethan Authors website is a collaborative effort by Robert Brazil & Barboura Flues
All Rights Reserved. All site contents Copyright © 2002 B. Flues and elizabethanauthors.com
Webmaster contact: firstname.lastname@example.org