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VITA quæ tandem magis est jucunda,
Semper amare ?
Vita quæ tandem magis est dolenda,
Tollit amorem ?
Nulla eam tollit medicina pestem,
Mars in a fury 'gainst love's brightest queen,
Put on his helm, and took him to his lance ; On Erycinus'* mount was Mavors seen,
And there his ensigns did the god advance, And by heaven's greatest gates he stoutly swore, Venus should die for she had wrong'd him sore.
Cupid heard this, and he began to cry,
And wish'd his mother's absence for a while : Peace, fool, quoth Venus, is it I must die ?
Must it be Mars? with that she coin'd a smile; She trimm'd her tresses, and did curl her hair, And made her face with beauty passing fair.
* Erycinus] Our author forgets here that the mountain from which Venus had the name of Erycina, was Eryx : it is not likely that he wrote “ Erycina's Mount.”
A fan of silver feathers in her hand,
And in a coach of ebony she went; She pass'd the place where furious Mars did stand,
And out her looks a lovely smile she sent; Then from her brows leap'd out so sharp a frown, That Mars for fear threw all his armour down. He vow'd repentance for his rash misdeed,
Blaming his choler that had caus’d his woe: Venus grew gracious, and with him agreed,
But charg'd him not to threaten beauty so, For women's looks are such enchanting charms, As can subdue the greatest god in arms.
And leave the laurel for the myrtle boughs,
And fair Diana Daphne + most allows :
Some make him blind to aim without advice, When, naked wretch, such feather'd bolts he lack,
And sight he hath, but cannot wrong the wise; For use but labour's weapon for defence, And Cupid, like a coward, flieth thence. He'st god in court, but cottage calls him child,
And Vesta's virgins with their holy fires Do cleanse the thoughts that fancy hath defild,
And burn the palace of his fond desires ; With chaste disdain they scorn the foolish god, And prove him but a boy not past the rod.
* make] The 4to. “ makes." + Daphne] The 4to. “ Daphnis.” # He's] The 4to.“ He is.” s burn) The 4to. “burnes."
LENTULUS'S DESCRIPTION OF TERENTIA IN
Qualis in aurora splendescit lumine Titan,
Talis in eximio corpore forma fuit : Lumina seu spectes radiantia, sive capillos,
Lux, Ariadne, tua; et lux tua, Phæbe, jacet. Venustata fuit verbis, spirabat odorem ;
Musica vox, nardus spiritus almus erat; Rubea labra, genæ rubræ, faciesque decora,
In qua concertant lilius atque rosa ; Luxuriant geminæ formoso in pectore mammæ;
Circundant niviæ candida colla comæ ; Denique talis erat divina Terentia, quales
Quondam certantes, Juno, Minerva, Venus.
THUS IN ENGLISH:
BRIGHTSOME Apollo in his richest pomp,
THE SHEPHERD'S ODE. WALKING in a valley green, Spread with Flora, summer queen, Where she heaping all her graces, Niggard seem'd in other places; Spring it was, and here did spring All that nature forth can bring. Groves of pleasant trees there grow, Which fruit and shadow could bestow : Thick-leav'd boughs small birds cover, Till sweet notes themselves discover; Tunes for number seem'd confounded, Whilst their mixtures music* sounded, 'Greeing well, yet not agreed That one the other should exceed. A sweet stream here silent glides, Whose clear water no fish hides; Slow it runs, which well bewray'd The pleasant shore the current stay’d. In this stream a rock was planted, Where no art nor nature wanted. Each thing so did other grace, As all places may give place ; Only this the place of pleasure, Where is heaped nature's treasure. Here mine eyes with wonder stay’d, Eyes amaz’d, and mind afraid, Ravish'd with what was beheld, From departing were withheld. Musing then with sound advice On this earthly paradise ; Sitting by the river side, Lovely Phillis was descried.
* music] The 4to. “ musickes.”
Gold her hair, bright her eyne, Like to Phoebus in his shine ; White her brow, her face was fair ; Amber breath perfum'd the air: Rose and lily both did seek To shew their glories on her cheek ; Love did nestle in her looks, Baiting there his sharpest hooks. Such a Phillis ne'er was seen, More beautiful than love's queen : Doubt it was, whose greater grace, Phillis' beauty, or the place. Her coat was of scarlet red, All in pleats ; a mantle spread, Fring’d with gold ; a wreath of boughs, To check the sun from her brows; In her hand a shepherd's hook, In her face Diana's look. Her sheep grazed on the plains; She had stolen from the swains ; Under a cool silent shade, By the streams she garlands made : Thus sat Phillis all alone. Miss'd she was by Coridon, Chiefest swain of all the rest; Lovely Phillis lik'd him best. His face was like Phæbus' love; His neck white as Venus' dove; A ruddy cheek, fill'd with smiles, Such Love hath when he beguiles ; His locks * brown, his eyes were gray, Like Titan in a summer day: A russet jacket, sleeves red; A blue bonnet on his head; A cloak of gray fenc'd the rain ; Thus 'tired was this lovely swain ;
* locks] The 4to. “ lookes."