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Exsiluisse fretum, quo pignore vindicet urbem ;

At sibi dat clypeum, dat acutæ cuspidis hastam, 75 Dat galeam capiti, defenditur Ægide pectus,

Percussamque sua simulat de cuspide terram 80
Prodere cum baccis fetum canentis olivæ,
Mirarique deos. Operis victoria finis.

Circuit extremas oleis pacalibus oras.
80 Mæonis elusam designat imagine tauri

Europen: verum taurum, freta vera putares.
Ipsa videbatur terras spectare relictas,

105 Et comites clamare suas, tactumque vereri

Assilientis aquæ, timidasque reducere plantas. 85 Fecit et Asterien aquila luctante teneri ;

Addidit, ut falsa celatus imagine pulchram 110
Jupiter et Ledam deceperit Antiopenque,
Amphitryo ut fuerit, cum te, Tirynthia, cepit;

Aureus ut Danaen, Asopida luserit igneus, 90 Mnemosynen pastor, varius Deoïda serpens. 120

Omnibus his faciemque suam faciemque locorum
Reddidit. Ultima pars, tenui circumdata limbo,
Nexilibus flores hederis habet intertextos.
Non illud Pallas,

livor 95 Possit opus. Doluit successu flava Virago, 130

Et rupit pictas, cælestia crimina, vestes ;
Utque Cytoriaco radium de monte tenebat,
Ter quater Idmoniæ frontem percussit Arachnes.

Non tulit infelix, laqueoque animosa ligavit 100 Guttura. Pendentem Pallas miserata levavit, 135 Atque ita, “Vive quidem, pende tamen, improba,"

dixit,
Lexque eadem pænæ, ne sis secura futuri,
Dicta tuo generi serisque nepotibus esto!”

Post ea discedens sucis Hecateïdos herbæ 105 Sparsit : et extemplo tristi medicamine tactæ 140

Defluxere comæ, cumque his et naris et auris,
Fitque caput minimum. Toto quoque corpore parva

est :
In latere exiles digiti pro cruribus hærent,

Cetera venter habet ; de quo tamen illa remittit 110 Stamen, et antiquas exercet aranea telas. 145

non

illud carpere

XXV. NIOBE.

(VI. 146–312.) The report of Arachne's wondrous punishment not only filled her native country, Lydia, and the neighbouring land of Phrygia, but was the talk of the whole world. Among others Niðbê, herself a Lydian by birth (popularis, v. 5) heard of it; but unhappily did not take warning from the example.— Niðbê, the daughter of Tantălus, had, with her brother Pelops, crossed from Lydia into Greece. She was married to Amphion, king of Thebes, who was a son of Jupiter and Antiõpe, and had received from the Muses the gift of the lyre. This prince ruled over Thebes, and his playing was so admirable, that the stones for the wall of Thebes collected and compacted themselves together to the notes of his lyre (conjugis artes, v. 7). As the wife of Amphion, Niðbê was the mother of many blooming children, in whom she felt herself highly happy, but was bereaved of them all in rapid succession, by sudden, unlooked-for death. There was in the ancient popular belief of the Greeks, which Homer also expresses, a firmly fixed idea, that every one who died without any external visible injury, but in consequence of some inward disorder, which in those times was not understood nor recognized, was slain by the invisible, gentle, archery of Apollo, or, if the person was a female, by the archery of Diana. This ancient popular belief served for the invention and adornment of the fable of Niðbê. She was the mother of a numerous progeny, but lost all her children rapidly one after another ; and since, according to the popular belief of the Greeks, the godhead was envious, Niðbê was thus supposed to have excited the envy and kindled the indignation of Latõna, over whom she vaunted herself by a presumptuous comparison, as richer in children. Upon this the vengeful Latona caused all the sons of Niðbê to perish by the arrows of Apollo, and her daughters by the arrows of Diana.-Ovid moreover assigns, as a further motive, that Niðbê cherished an overweening pride in her genealogy and descent, and wanted to be allowed precedence of Latona—inasmuch as she (Niðbê) was a visible goddess (visa coelestis, v. 25), while people knew of Latona by hearsay only (auditos coelestes, ibid) : on these grounds she interdicted sacrifice to Latona. Deep woe fell on Niðbê, bereaved of all her children and of her husband ; through sorrow she hardened into stone, and tears still trickle forth from the stone, and proclaim her grief. Not, however, in Bæotia, but in native country, Lydia, was shown the trickling rock, into which Niðbê had been changed (whence ; turbine venti in patriam rapta est, v. 164, f.). The fable of Niðbê, moreover, was a favourite subject of the ancient sculptors, and we have even now valuable relics of ancient statues, which are known by the name of groups of Niðbê.”

Lydia tota fremit, Phrygiæque per oppida facti 146 Rumor it, et magnum sermonibus occupat orbem. Ante suos Niobe thalamos cognoverat illam,

Tunc cum Mæoniam virgo Sipylumque colebat ; 5 Nec tamen admonita est pæna popularis Arachnes, 150

Cedere cælitibus verbisque minoribus uti.
Multa dabant animos : sed enim nec.conjugis artes
Nec genus amborum magnique potentia regni

Sic placuere illi, quamvis ea cuncta placerent, — 10 Ut sua progenies. Et felicissima matrum 155 Dicta foret Niobe, si non sibi visa fuisset.

Nam sata Tiresia, venturi præscia, Manto
Per medias fuerat, divino concita motu,

Vaticinata vias : Ismenides, ite frequentes, 15 Et date Latonæ Latonigenisque duobus

160 Cum prece tura pia, lauroque innectite crinem ! Ore meo Latona jubet.” Paretur, et omnes Thebaïdes jussis sua tempora frondibus ornant,

Turaque dant sanctis et verba precantia flammis. 20 Ecce, venit comitum Niobe celeberrima turba, 165

Vestibus intexto Phrygiis spectabilis auro,
Et, quantum ira sinit, formosa, movensque decoro
Cum capite immissos humerum per utrumque capillos,

Constitit; utque oculos circumtulit alta superbos, 25 “Quis furor auditos," inquit, “præponere visis 170

Coelestes ? Aut cur colitur Latona per aras;
Numen adhuc sine ture meum est? Mihi Tantalus

auctor,
Cui licuit soli Superorum tangere mensas ;

Pleïadum soror est genitrix mea ; maximus Atlas 30 Est avus, ætherium qui fert cervicibus axem ;

175
Jupiter alter avus ; socero quoque glorior illo.
Me gentes metuunt Phrygiæ ; me regia Cadmi
Sub domina est, fidibusque mei commissa mariti

Monia cum populis a meque viroque reguntur. 35 In quamcumque domus adverto lumina partem, 180

Immensæ spectantur opes. Accedit eodem
Digna dea facies. Huc natas adjice septem
Et totidem juvenes, et mox generosque nurusque.

Quærite nunc, habeat quam nostra superbia caussam ! 40 Quoque modo audetis genitam Titanida Cão 185

Latonam præferre mihi, cui maxima quondam
Exiguam sedem parituræ terra negavit ?
Nec cælo nec humo nec aquis dea vestra recepta est ;

Exul erat mundi, donec, miserata vagantem, 45 “Hospita tu terris erras; ego,” dixit, “in undis !” 190

Instabilemque locum Delos dedit. Illa duorum
Facta parens : uteri pars hæc est septima nostri.
Sum felix : quis enim neget hoc? felixque manebo.

Hoc quoque quis dubitet ? Tutam me copia fecit : 50 Major sum, quam cui possit Fortuna nocere,

195 Multaque ut eripiat, multo mihi plura relinquet. Excessere metum mea jam bona. Fingite demi Huic aliquid populo natorum posse meorum ;

Non tamen ad numerum redigar spoliata duorum. 55 Ite sacris, propere ite sacris, laurumque capillis 200

Ponite !”. Deponunt et sacra infecta relinquunt,
Quodque licet, tacito venerantur murmure numen.

Indignata dea est, summoque in vertice Cynthi Talibus est dictis gemina cum prole locuta : 205 60

En ego, vestra parens, vobis animosa creatis,
Et nisi Junoni, nulli cessura dearum,
An dea sim, dubitor, perque omnia sæcula cultis
Arceor, o nati, nisi vos succurritis, aris.
Nec dolor hic solus : diro convicia facto

210 65 Tantalis adjecit, vosque est postponere natis

Ausa suis, et me, quod in ipsam recidat, orbam
Dixit, et exhibuit linguam scelerata paternam.”

Adjectura preces erat his Latona relatis ;
Desine :" Phoebus ait, “pænæ mora longa querela
est."

215 70 Dixit idem Phæbe; celerique per aera lapsu Contigerant tecti Cadmeïda nubibus arcem.

Planus erat lateque patens prope mænia campus, Assiduis pulsatus equis, ubi turba rotarum

Duraque mollierant subjectas ungula glebas. 220 75 Pars ibi de septem genitis Amphione fortes

Conscendunt in equos, Tyrioque rubentia suco
Terga premunt auroque graves moderantur habenas.
E quibus Ismenos, qui matri sarcina quondam

Prima suæ fuerat, dum certum flectit in orbem 225 80 Quadrupedis cursus spumantiaque ora coercet,

“ Hei mihi!” conclamat medioque in pectore fixus
Tela gerit, frenisque manu moriente remissis
In latus a dextro paullatim defluit armo.

Proximus, audito sonita per inane pharetræ, 230 85 Frena dabat Sipylus, veluti cum præscius imbris

Nube fugit visa pendentiaque undique rector
Carbasa deducit, ne qua levis effluat aura.
Frena tamen dantem non evitabile telum

Consequitur, summaque tremens cervice sagitta 235 90 Hæsit, et exstabat nudum de gutture ferrum.

Ille, ut erat pronus, per colla admissa jubasque
Volvitur, et calido tellurem sanguine fødat.

Phædimus infelix et aviti nominis heres Tantalus, ut solito finem imposuere labori, 240 95 Transierant ad opus nitidæ juvenile palæstræ,

Et jam contulerant arcto luctantia nexu .
Pectora pectoribus ; cum tento concita nervo,
Sicut erant juncti, trajecit utrumque sagitta.

Ingemuere simul, simul incurvata dolore 245 100 Membra solo posuere, simul suprema jacentes

Lumina versarunt, animam simul exhalarunt.
Adspicit Alphenor laniataque pectora plangens
Advolat, ut gelidos complexibus allevet artus,
Inque pio cadit officio : nam Delius illi

250 105 Intima fatifero rupit præcordia ferro;

Quod simul eductum, pars et pulmonis in hamis
Eruta, cumque anima cruor est effusus in auras.
At non intonsum şimplex Damasichthona vulnus

Afficit : ictus erat, qua crus esse incipit et qua 255 110 Mollia nodosus facit internodia poples,

Dumque manu tentat trahere exitiabile telum,
Altera per jugulum pennis tenus acta sagitta est.
Expulit hanc sanguis, seque ejaculatus in altum

Emicat et longe terebrata prosilit aura. 260 115 Ultimus Ilioneus non profectura precando

Brachia sustulerat, Dique o communiter omnes,"
Dixerat, ignarus non omnes esse rogandos,
“ Parcite !” Motus erat, cum jam revocabile telum

Non fuit, Arcitenens; minimo tamen occidit ille 265 120 Vulnere, non alte percusso corde sagitta.

Fama mali populique dolor lacrimæque suorum

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