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H O M E R.




Qui cupit optatam curfu contingere metam,
"Multa tulit, fecltqiie, puer Hor.

L N D Ny

Printedfor A. Horace, P.Virgil, and T. Cicero,
\nPaiernoJler-Rowy J. Milton inSt.P^«/'s Church*
yard, D. Plato, and A. Pope in the Strand.

M D C C L I X.





The reconciliation of Achilles and Agamemnon.

THETIS brings to her fan the armour made by Vul-
can, She preferves the body of his friend from cor.-
ruptiont and commands biin to ajfcmhle the arrny^ to-
dec! are his refeniment at an end. Agamemnon and
Achilles are folemnly reconciled t the fpeeches^ pre-

JentSy and ceremonies on that occafion, Achilles is
nui/h great difficulty perfuaded to refrain from ths
battle till the troops have refreshed themfelves^ by
the advice of Vlyjfes. The prefents are conveyed to
the tent of Achilles \ 'where Brifeis laments over ther
body of Pairoclus, The hero obflinately refufes all
repajly and gives hiinfelf up to lamentations for his

friend, Minerva defends toftrengthen him^ by the
order of Jupiter, He arms for the fight \ his ap*
pearance defcribed. He addreffes hinfelfto his hor^

fes, and reproaches them nvith the death ofPatroclus,
One of i hern is miraculotify endued nuith voice ^ and
infpired to prophsfy his fate \ but the hero not aflo-
nished by that prodigy^ rushes ^'Athfury to the com-
bat e»
The thirtieth day , The fcene // on ihefea-shore.

Q< O O N as Aurora heav'd her orient head
*^ Above the waves, that bhifn'd with early red,
(With new-born day to gladden mortal fight,
And gild the courts of heav'n v/ith facred light,)

A 2

4 H O M E R's I L I A D. Book XIX.

Th' Immortal arms the Goddefs-mother bears 5

Swift to her fon-: her fon (he finds in tears

Stretch 'd o'er Patroclus' corfe ; while all the reft

Their fov 'reign's forrows in their own expreft.

A ray divine her heav'nly prefence fhed,

Aud thu?, his hand foft-touching, Thetis faid^ 10

Supprels (my fon) this rage of grief, and know
It was not man, but heav'n that gave the blow ;
Behold what arms by Vulcan are beftow'd.
Arms worthy thee, or fit to grace a god.

Then drops the radiant burden on the ground ; 1 5
Clang the ftrong arms, and ring the fhores around :.
Back fhrink the Myrmidons with dread furprize,
And from the broad effulgence turn their eyes.
Unmov'd, the hero kindles at the fhow,
And feels with rage divine his bofom glow ; 20

From his fierce eye-balls living flames expire,
And fiafii incefTant like a flream of fire :
He turns the radiant gift, and feeds his mind
On all th' immortal artifl had defign'd* ,

V. ig. Behold nuhat arms, etc.] It is not poetry only
which has had diis idea,, of giving divine arms to a heno ;
we have a very reimrkable example of it in our holy
books. In the fecond of Maccabees, chap. 16. Judas
fees in a dream the prophet Jeremiah bringing to him a
fword as from God : though this was only a dream, or
a vifion yet ftill it is the fimie idea. This example is
likewlfe fo much the more worthy of obfervation, as it is
much latter than the age of Homer ; and as thereby it is
feen, that the fame way of thinking continued a long time
amongft the oriental nations. Dacier.

Book XIX, H O M E R's I L r A D. ^

Goddefs (he cry'd) thefe glorious arras that Ihine 2 5
With matchlefs art, confefs the hand divine.
Now to the bloody battle let me bend :
But ah ! the relics of my llaughter'd friend !
In thofe wide wounds thro' which his fpirit fled.
Shall flieSj and worms obfcene, pollute the dead ? 30

V. 30. Shall flies, and nvorms ohfcenc, pollute the
dead?~] The care which Achilles takes in this place to
drive away the flies from the body of Patroclus, feeras
to us a mean employment, and a care unworthy of a
hero. But that office was regarded by Homer, and by
all the Greeks of his time, as a pious duty confecrated
by curtom and religion ; which obliged the kindred and
friends of the deceafed to watch his corps, and prevent
any corruption before the folemn day of his funerals. It
is plain this devoir was thought an indifpenfable one,
iince Achilles could not difcharge himfelf of it but by
xmpofmg it upon his mother. It is alfo clear, that in
thofe times the prefervation of a dead body was account-
ed a very important matter, fmce the Goddeffes them- •
feives,nay the moft delicate of the Goddefles, made it the
fubjed of their utmoft attention. As I hetis prefeives the
body of Patroclus, and chafes from it thofe infecfts that
breed in the wounds and caufe putrefadrion, fo Venus
is employed day and night about that of Heclor, in driv-
ing away the dogs to which Achilles had expofed it. A-
polio, on his part, covers it with a thick cloud, and pre^
ferves its frellmefs amidd the greateft heats of the fun :■
and this care of the deities over the dead was looked'
upon by men as a fruit of their piety.

There is an excellent remaik upon this paffage in Rof-
fu's admirable treatife of the eric pcem, lib. 3. c. 10.
" To fpeak Cfays this author) of the arts and fciences
" as a poet ought, we fhould veil them under names
*' and actions of peifcns, fiCdtious, and allegorical.


6 H O iM E R's I L I A D. BookXIX.

That unavailing care be laid afide,
(The azure Goddefs to her fon reply'd)
Whole years untouch 'd, uninjur'd fhall remain
Frefh as in life, the carcafe of the flain.
But go, Achilles, (as affairs require) 35

Before the Grecian peers renounce thine ire :
Then uncontroll'd in boundlefs war engage,
And heav'n with ftrength fupply the mighty rage I

Then in the noftrils of the flain fhe pour'd
Nedlareous drops, and rich ambrofia fliower'd 40

O'er all the corfe. The flies forbid their prey,
Untonch'd it refts, and facred from decay.
Achilles to the ftrand obedient went r
The ftiores refounded with the voice he fent.
The heroes heard, and all the naval train 45

That tend the fhips, or guide them o'er the main,

* Homer will not plainly fay that fait has the virtue to

* preferve dead bodies, and prevent the flies from en-

* gendering worms in them ; he will not fay, that the

* fea prefented Achilles a remedy to preferve Patroclus

* from putrefadion ; but he will make the fea a God-

* defs, and tell us, that Thetis to comfort Achilles,

* engaged to perfume the body with an ambrofia which

* fhould keep it a whole year from corruption : it is

* thus Homer teaches the poets to fpeak of arts and fci«

* ences. This example fliews the nature of the things,

* that flies caufe putrefadion, that fait preferves bodies

* from it ; but all this is told us poetically, the whole ,

* is reduced into action, the fea is made a pcrfon who
' fpeaks and adls, and this profopopoeia is accompanied

* with pafTion, tendemefs, and affe<5tion ; in a word,

* there is nothing which is not (according to Ariftotle's

* precept) endowed with manners,"

Book XIX. H M E R's I L I A D. 7

Alarni'd, tranfported, at the well known found.

Frequent and full, the great affembly crown'd; .

Studious to fee that terror of the plain.

Long loft to battle, fhine in arms again, yo

Tydides and Ulyffes lirft appear.

Lame with their wounds, and leaning on the fpear ;

Thele on the facred feats of council plac'd.

The king of men, Atrides came the laft :

He too fore wounded by Agenor's fon. ^^

Achilles (rifing in the midft) begun.

O monarch ! better far had been the fate
Of thee, of me, of all the Grecian ftate.
If (ere the day when by mad pafTion fway'd,
Ralh we contended for the black ey'd maid) 60

Preventing Dian had difpatch'd her dart^
And fhot the (hining mifchief to the heart !

V. 61. Prevent hg D'.an had difpatch''d her dart^
And Jhot the Jlnning mij chief to the heart. ~\
Achilles wiflies Brifeis had died before /he had occa-
fioned fo great calamities to his countrymen : 1 will not
fay, to excufe him, that his vinue here overpowers his
love, but that the wi(h is not fo very barbarous as it
may feem by the phrafe to a modern reader. It is not
that Diana had adually killed her, as by a particular
ftroke or judgment from heaven ; it means no more
than a natural death, as appears from this paffage in
OdyC 15.

When age andficknefs have unnerved thejlrongy
Apollo C07?2eSi and Cynthia cofnes along^
They bend the filver bonus for fudden ill.
And every shining arro'vjfiies to kilL

S H O M E R's I L I A ]>. Book XIX.

Then many a hero had not prefs'd die fhore.

Nor Troy's glad fields been fatten'd with our gore :

Long, long fhall Greece the woes we caus*d, bewail, 65

And fad poflerity repeat the tale.

But this, no more the fubjeft of debatej

Is paft, forgotten, and refign'd to fate :

Why fhould (alas) a mortal man, as I,.

Bum with a fury that can never die ? 70

Here then my anger ends : let war fucceed,

And ev'n as Greece has bled, let Ilion bleed.

Now call the hofts, and try, if in our fight,

Troy yet ftiall dare to camp a fecond night ?

i deem, their mightieft, when this arm he knows, 75

Shall 'fcape with tranfport, and with joy repofe.

He faid : his finifh'd wrath with loud acclaijn.
The Greeks accept, and fhout Pelides' name.
When thus, not ri'lng from his lofty throne,.
In ftate unmov'd, the king of men begun.. 80

Hear me, ye fons of Greece ! widi filence hear !
And grant your monarch an impartial ear ;
A while your loud, untimely joys fafpend.
And let your rafli, injurious clamours end :
Unruly murmurs, or ill-tim'd applaufe, 85

Wrong the befl fpeaker, and the juftefl caufe.
Nor charge on me,, ye Greeks, the dire debate :
Know, angry Jove, and all-compelling Fate,

And he does not wifii her death nov/, after fiie had
been his miftrefs, but only that die had died, before he
knew, or loved her.

Hook XIX. H O M E R's I L I A a 9

With fell Erinnys, urg'd my wrath that day

When from Achilles' arms I forc'd the prey. 90

What then could I, again it the will ofheavn?

Not by himfclf, but vengeful Ate driv'n;

She, Jove's dread daughter, fated to infefl:

The race of mortals, enter'd in my breaft.

V. 93. She, Jovss dread daughter P^ This fpeech of
Agamemnon, confifting of little elfe than the long (lory
of Jupiter's cafting difcord out of heaven, feems odd e-
nough at firft fight ; and does not indeed anfwer what I
believe every reader expeds, at the conference of thefe
two princes. Without exaifing it from the juftnefs and
proper application of the allegory in the prefent cafe, I
think it a piece of artifice, very agreeable to the charac-
ter of Agamemnon, w^hich is a mixture of haughtinefs
and cunning ; he cannot prevail with himfelf any way to
leffen the dignity of the royal charader, of which he e-
very where appears jealous : fomething he is obliged to
fay in public, and not brooking diredly to own himfelf
in the wrong, he flurs it over with this tale. With what
ftatelinefs is it that he yields ! " I was milled,, (fays he)
" but I was milled like Jupiter. "vVc Invert you with
" our powers, take our troops and our treafures : our
*' royal promifc fhall be fulfilled, but be you pacified."

V. 93. She, Jove's dread daughter, fated to infej}

The race of mortals ~\

It appears from hence, that the ancients owned a Die-
mon, created by God himfelf,. and totally taken up in
doing mifchief.

This fidion is very remarkable, in as much as it
proves that the Pagans knew that a dnrmon of difcord
and malediction was in heaven, and afterwards precipi-
tated to earth, which perfedly agrees with holy hiftory,
St. JufHn will have it, that Homer attained to the
knowledge iherof Ln .^gypt, and that he had even read

lO H O M E R's I L I A D, Book XIX.

Not on the ground that haughty fury treads,^ 95

But prints her lofty footfteps on the heads

Of mighty men ; infliding as fhe goes

Long feftring wounds, Inextricable woes !

Of old, fhe ftalk'd amid the bright abodes ;.

And Jove himfelf, the fire of men and gods, 100

The world's great ruler, felt her venom'd dart ;

Peceiv'd by Juno's wiles, and female art ;

For when Alcraena's nine long months were run.

And Jove expected his immortal Ion ;

To gods and goddelles th' unruly joy 105

He fhow'd, and vaunted of his matchlefs boy :

From us (he faid) this day an infant fprings,

Fated to rule, and born a king of kings.

Saturnia ask*d an oath, to vouch the truth.

And fix dominion on the favour 'd youth, I lO

The thundVer unfufpicious of the fraud,

Pronounc'd thofe folemn words that bind a god. .

The joyful goddefs, from Olympus' height.

Swift to Achaian Argos bent her flight ;

Whatlfaiah writes, chap. 14. Hc%v art thou fallen from
heaven, Luctftr^ [on of the mornings honv art thou
cut doiun to the ground ivhich did ft iveaken the nations?
But our poet could not have feen the prophecy of
Xfaiah, becaufe he lived one hundred, or one hundred
and fifty years before that prophet ; and this anteriority
of time makes this pafTage the more obfervcible. Homer
therein bears authentic witnefs to the truth of the flory,
of an angel thrown from heaven, and gives this telllmo-
ny above one hundred years before one of the greateit
prophets fpoke of it. Dacier.



Book XIX. HO ME R's I LI AD. li

Scarce fev'n moons gone, lay Sthenelus his wife; 115
She piifli'd her ling'ring infant into life :
Her charms Alcmena's coming labours (lay.
And (top the babe, juft iiTuing to the day. 9

Then bids Satumius bear his oath in mind ;
.** A youth (faid (he) of Jove's immortal kind 1 20

Is this day born : from Sthenelus he fprings,
And claims thy promife to be king of kings.
Grief feiz'd the thund'rer, by his oath engag'd ;
Stung to the foul, he fbrrow'd, and he rag'd.
From his ambrofial head, where perch'd fhe fate, I2jj
He fnatch'd the fury-goddefs of debate.
The dread, the irrevocable oath he fwore,
Th' immortal feats fhould ne'er behold her more ;
And whirl'd her headlong dov/n, for ever driv'n
From bright Olympus and the ftarry heav'n ; 1 3®

Thence on the nether world the fury fell ;
Ordain'd with man's contentious race to dwell.
Full oft' the god his fon's hard toils bemaon'd,
Curs'd the dire fury, and in fecret groan*d.
Ev'n thus, like Jove himielf, was I mifled, I^p

While raging Hedlor heap'd our camps widi dead.
"What can the errors of my rage atone ?
My martial troops, my treafures are thy own :
This inftant from the navy ihall be fent
Whate'er Ulyffes piomis'd at thy tent ; 14^

But thou 1 appeas'd, propitious to our pray V,
Refume thy arms, and fhine again In war.

1-2 HO M E R's ILIA D. Book XIX.

O king of nations ! whofe fupeiior fway
(Returns Achilles) all our hofls obey !
To keep or fend the prefents, by thy care: 145

To us, 'tis equal : all we ask is war.
While yet we talk, or but an inftant fliun
The fight, our glorious work remains undone.
Let ev'ry Greek, who fees my fpear confound
The Trojan ranks, and deal deftru^fHon round, 150
With emulation, what I a(5l, furvey,
And learn fron^^thence the bufinefs of the day,

The fon of Peleus thus : and thus replies
The great in councils, Ithacus the wife.
Tho' godlike thou art by no toils opprcft, 1 55

At leaft our armies daim repaft and reft:
Long and laborious mull the combate be,
When by the gods infpir'd, and led by thee.
t Strength is deriv'd. from fpirits and from blood,
i- And thofe augment by gen'rous wine and food ; 160

V. 1 4 J. To keep or fend the prefents he thy care."]
Achilles neither refiifes nor demands Agamemnon's pre-
fents : the lirft would be too contemptuous, and the 0-
ther would look too felfifli. It would "feem as if Achil-
les fought only for pay like a mercenary, which would
be utterly unbecoming a hero, and difhonourable to that
chara<5ler : Homer is wonderful as to the manners. Spon-
danus. Dacier.

V. 159. Strength is derivd from fpirits, etc.] This
advice of Ulyfles, that the troops fhould refrefh themfelves
with eating and drinking, was extremely neceffary after a
battle of fo long continuance as that of the day -before :
and Achilles's defire that they fliould charge the enemy




What boaflful fon of war, without that (lay,

Can lad a hero thro' a fingle day ?

Courage may prompt ; but, ebbing out his ftrcDgth,

Mere unfupported man muft yield at length ;

Shrunk with dry famine, and with toils dcdm'd, t6^

The dropping body will deier-t the mind :

But built a-new with ftrength -conferring fare.

With limbs and foul untani'd, he tires a war,

Difniifs the people then, and give command.

With ftrong repa(l to hearten ev'ry band ; 1 70

But let the prelents to Achilles made,

In full aflembly of all Greece be laid.

The king of men fliall rife in public Hght,

And folemn fwear (obfervant of the rite)

That fpotiefs as Ihe came, the maid removes, 1*^5

Pure from his arms, and guiltlefs of his loves.

That done, a fumptuous banquet fliall, be made.

And the full-price of injur'd honour paid,

immediately, without any refleiflion on the necciTity oi
that refreihment, was alfo highly natural to his violent
charader. This forces Ulyfies to repeat that advice,
and infift upon it fo much : Vvhich thofe critics did not
fee into, who through a falfe delicacy are fliocked at his
mfifting fo warmly upon eating and drinking. Indeed
tp a common reader who is more fund of heroic and
romantic, than of juft and and natural images, this at drCx.
fight may have an air of ridicule; but I'll venture to
fay there is nothing ridiculous in the thing itfelf, nor
mean and low in Homer's manner of exprelling it : and
I believe the fame of this tranflation, though I have not
foftened or abated of the idea they are fo offended with.
Vol. IV. B

14 H O M E R*s 1 L I A D. Book XIX.

•Stretch not henceforth, O prince ! thy fov'reign might.
Beyond the bounds of reafon and of right ; igo

'Tis the chief praile that e'er to kings belong'd
To right with judice whom with pow'r they wrong'd.

To him the monarch. Juft is thy decree,
Thy words give joy, and wifdom breathes in thee.
Each due atonement gladly I prepare ; l8c

And heav'n regard me as I juflly fwear !
Here then a while let Greece afTembled flay.
Nor great Achilles grudge this fliort delay ;
'Till from the fleet our prefents be convey'd,
And, Jove attefting, the firm compad: made. 190

A train of noble youth the charge fuall bear;
Thefe to feled, UlyfTes, be thy care :
In order rank'd let all our gifts appear.
And the fair train of captives clofe the rear :
Talthybius fhali the vidim boar convey, I^-

Sacred to Jove, and yon' bright orb of day,
For this (ihe ftern /^acides replies)
Some lefs important feafon may fui?ice,

v.K^j. Thejierri JEacides replies.'] The Greek veife is,

'Which is repeated very frequently throughout the Iliad.
It is a very juH: remark of a French critic, that wliat
makes it fo much taken notice of, is the rumblin'r found
and length of the word uTrauet /Sctavog this is fo true,
that if in a. poem or romance of the fame length as the
Iliad, we fliould repeat T/^e hero anfwered, full as often,
we fhouM. never be fenfible of that repetition. And if
we are not fhodied at the like frecjuency of thofe ex-

Book XIX. H O M E R's ILIAD. I jT

When the ft em fury of the war is o'er,

And wrath extinguilh'd burns my bread no more. 20O

preilions in the JEneid, ftc ore referi^ talia voce refertj
talia diSia dabat, z;x eafatus erat, etc. it is only becaufe
the found of the Latin words does not fill the ear like
that of the Greek <«7r««t6v^,<3weye?.

The difcourfe of the fame critic upon thefe fort of re-
petitions in general, deferves to be tranfcribed. That
ufelefs nicety (fays he) of avoiding every repetition,
which tlie delicacy of later times has introduced) was
not known to the firft ages of antiquity : the books of
Mofes abound with them. Far from condemning their
frequent ufe in the moft ancient of all the poets, wc
fiiouid look upon them as the certain charaifter of the
age in which he lived : they fpoke fj in his time, and to
have fpoken otliervvfife had been a fault. tKnd indeed
nothing is in itfelf fo contrary to the true fublime, as
that painful and frivolous exadnefs, with which we a-
void to make ufe of a proper word becaufe it was ufed
before. It is certain that the Romans were lefs fcru-
pulous as to this point : you have often in a fingle page
of Tully, the fame v/ord five or fix. times over. If it
were really a fault, it is not to be conceived hov/ an au-
thor who fo little wanted variety of expreiTions as Ho-
mer, could be fo very negligent herein. On the contrary,
he fecms to have aifcvfled to repeat the fame things ia
the fame words, on many occafior.c.

It was from tv/o principles equally true, tliat among
feveral people, and in feveral ages, tv/o praei.ices intire-
ly dilTerent took their rife. Mofcs, Homer, and the wri-
ters of the firii: times, bad found that repetiiions of the
fame words recalled the ideas of things, imprinted thcni
much more frrongly, and rendered the difcourfe more in-
telligible. Upon this principle, the cuftom of repeadng
words, phrafes, and even intire fpeeches, infenfibly elhi-
blifhed itfelf both in profe and poetry, Specially in nar-
rations. B 2

i6 H O ]M E R's I L I A ]>. Book XIX.

By Hedor flain, their faces to the flcy.

All grim with gaping wounds, our heroes lie ;

The writers who fucceeded them obferved, even from
Homer himfelf, that the greateft beauty of (tyle confifted
in variety. This they made their principle : they there-
fore avoided repetitions of words, and ftill more of whole
fentences ; they endeavoured to vary their tranfitions ;
and found out new turns and manners of exprefTmg the
fame things.

Either of thefe pradices is good, but the excefs of
either vicious : we fhould neither on the one hand, through
a love of firaplicity and clearnefs, continually repeat the
fame words, phrafes, or difcourfes ; nor on the other, for
the pleafure of variety, fall into a chiMifh aftedation of
expreffing every thing twenty different ways, though it
be never fo natural and common.

Nothing fo much cools the warmth of a piece, or
puts out the fire of poetry, as that perpetual care to vary
inceHantly even in the fnialled circumdances. In this,
fis in many other points. Homer has defpifed the un-
gi-ateful labour of too fcrupulous a nicety. He has
done like a great painter, who does not think himfelf
obliged to vary all his pieces to that degree, as not one
of them fliiili liave the lead refemblance to another : if
tl>e principal figures are intirely different, v/e eafily ex-
cufe a refemblance in the landfcapes, the fides, or the
di-aperies. Suppofe a gallery full of pidures, each of
Vvhich reprefents a particular fu bjedl: : in one I fee A-
chilles in fury, menacing Agamemnon; in another the
fame hero with regret delivers up Brifeis to the heralds ;
in a third it is dill Achilles, but Achilles overcome with
^rlcf, and lamenting to his mother. If the air, the
gefture, the countenance, the character of Achilles, arc
the fame in each of theie three pieces : if the ground of
one of thefe be the fame with that of the others in the
compofition and general defign, whether it be landfcape
or architeflure ; then indeed one fhould have reafon to

Book XIX. H O M E R's I L I A D. 17

Thofe call to war ! and might my voice incite,
Now, now, this inftant fliou'd commence the fight,
Then,.when the day's complete, let gen'rous bowls, 205
And copious banquets, glad your weary fouls.
Let not my palate know the tafte of food,
'Till my infatiate rage be cloy'd with blood :
Pale lies my friend, with wounds disfigur'd o'er.
And his cold feet are pointed to the door, 2lO

blame the painter for the uniformity of his figures and
Grounds. But if there be no famenefs but in the folds
of a few draperies, in the frru£ture of fome part of a
building, or in the figure of fome tree, mountain, or
cloud, is what no one would regard as a fault. The ap-
plicadon is obvious : Homer repeats, but they are not
the great ftrokes which he repeats, not thofe which ftrike
and fix our attention : they are only the little parts, the
tranlitions, the general circumftances, or familiar images,
which recur naturally, and upon whicii the reader but
cads his eye carclefly ; fuch as the defcripdons of facri-
fices, repails, or embarquements : fuch in fhort, as are
in their own nature much the fame, which It is fufficient.
juft to fnev/, and which are in a manner Incapable of dif-

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