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When sickness reigns (for they as well as we Feel all th’ effects of frail mortality) By certain marks the new disease is seen, Their colour changes, and their looks are thin; Their funeral rites are form’d, and ev'ry bee With grief attends the sad solemnity ; The few diseas'd survivors hang before Their sickly cells, and droop about the door, Or slowly in their hives their limbs unfold, Shrunk up with hunger, and benumb’d with cold; In drawling hums, the feeble insects grieve, And doleful buzzes echo-through the hive, Like winds that softly murmur through the trees, Like frames pent up, or like retiring seas. Now lay fresh honey near their empty rooms, In troughs of hollow reeds, whilst frying gums Cast round a fragrant mist of spicy fumes; Thus kindly tempt the famish'd swarm to eat, And gently reconcile them to their meat. Mix juice of galls, and wine, that grow in time Condens’d by fire, and thicken to a slime; To these dry'd roses, thyme, and cent'ry join, And raisins ripen'd on the Psythian vine.

Besides, there grows a flow'r in marshy ground, Its name Amellus, easy to be found ; A mighty spring works in its root, and cleaves The sprouting stalk, and shows itself in leaves : The flow'r itself is of a golden hue, The leaves inclining to a darker blue ; The leaves shoot thick about the flow'r, and grow Into a bush, and shade the turf below: The plant in holy garlands often twines The altars' posts, and beautifies the shrines; Its taste is sharp, in vales new shorn it grows, Where Mella's stream in wat’ry mazes flows.

Take plenty of its roots, and boil them well
In wine, and heap them up before the cell.

But if the whole stock fail, and none survive ;
To raise new people, and recruit the hive,
I'll here the great experiment declare,
That spread th' Arcadian shepherd's name so far.
How bees from blood of slaughter'd bulls have fled,
And swarms amidst the red corruption bred.

For where th’ Egyptians yearly see their bounds Refresh'd with floods, and sail about their grounds, Where Persia borders, and the rolling Nile Drives swiftly down the swarthy Indians soil, Till into seven it multiplies its stream, And fattens Egypt with a fruitful slime: In this last practice all their hope remains, And long experience justifies their pains.

First then a close contracted space of ground, With straiten’d walls and low-built roof they found; A narrow shelving light is next assign'd To all the quarters, one to every wind; Through these the glancing rays obliquely pierce : Hither they lead a bull that's young and fierce. When two years growth of horn he proudly shows, And shakes the comely terrors of his brows: His nose and mouth, the avenues of breath, They muzzle up, and beat his limbs to death ; With violence to life and stilling pain He flings and spurns, and tries to snort in vain, Loud heavy blows fall thick on ev'ry side, Till his bruis'd bowels burst within the hide. When dead, they leave him rotting on the ground, With branches, thyme, and cassia, strew'd around. All this is done when first the western breeze Becalms the year, and smooths the troubled seas;

Before the chattering swallow builds her nest,
Or fields in spring's embroidery are drest,
Mean while the tainted juice ferments within,
And quickens as it works: and now are seen
A wondrous swarm, that o'er the carcass crawls,
Of shapeless, rude, unfinish'd animals.
No legs at first the insect's weight sustain,
At length it moves its new-made limbs with pain ;
Now strikes the air with quiv'ring wings, and tries
To lift its body up, and learns to rise ;
Now bending thighs and gilded wings it wears
Full grown, and all the bee at length appears ;
From every side the fruitful carcass pours
Its swarming brood, as thick as summer show'rs,
Or flights of arrows from the Parthian bows,
When twanging strings first shoot them on the foes.

Thus have I sung the nature of the bee;
While Cæsar, tow'ring to divinity,
The frighted Indians with his thunder aw'd,
And claim'd their homage, and commenc'd a god;
I flourish'd all the while in arts of peace,
Retir'd and shelter'd in inglorious ease :
I who before the songs of shepherds made,
When gay and young my rural lays I play'd,
And set my Tityrus beneath his shade.

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CECILIA, whose exalted hymns

With joy and wonder fill the blest,
In choirs of warbling seraphims,

Known and distinguish'd from the rest,
Attend, harmonious saint, and see

Thy vocal sons of harmony;
Attend, harmonious saint, and hear our pray’rs;

Enliven all our earthly airs,
And, as thou singst thy God, teach us to sing of thee :

Tune ev'ry string and ev'ry tongue,
Be thou the muse and subject of our song.


Let all Cecilia's praise proclaim,
Employ the echo in her name.
Hark how the futes and trumpets raise,
At bright Cecilia's name, their lays ;

The organ labours in her praise.
Cecilia's name does all our numbers grace ;

From ev'ry voice the tuneful accents fly,

In soaring trebles now it rises high,
And now it sinks, and dwells upon the bass.

Cecilia's name through all the notes we sing,

The work of ev'ry skilful tongue, The sound of ev'ry trembling string,

The sound and triumph of our song.


For ever consecrate the day,

To music and Cecilia ;
Music, the greatest good that mortals know,
And all of heav'n we have below.

Music can noble hints impart,
Engender fury, kindle love;
With unsuspected eloquence can move,

And manage all the man with secret art.
When Orpheus strikes the trembling lyre,
The streams stand still, the stones admire ;
The list'ning savages advance,

The wolf and lamb around him trip,

The bears in awkward measures leap,

And tigers mingle in the dance.
The moving woods attended as he play'd,
And Rhodope was left without a shade.


Music religious hearts inspires,

It wakes the soul, and lifts it high,
And wings it with sublime desires,

And fits it to bespeak the Deity.
Th' Almighty listens to a tuneful tongue,
And seems well pleas'd and courted with a song.
Soft moving sounds and heav'nly airs
Give force to ev'ry word, and recommend our pray’rs.

When time itself shall be no more,
And all things in confusion hurl'd,

Music shall then exert its pow'r,
And sound suryiye the ruins of the world :

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