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Thrice-loved Adonis ! in his youth's fresh glow,
Loved even where the rueful stream doth flow.


Cease ye like turtles idly thus to babble :
They'll torture all of us with brogue and gabble.


Who's you ? what's it to you our tongues we use ?
Rule your own roost, not dames of Syracuse.
And this too know we were in times foregone
Corinthians, sir, as was Bellerophon.
We speak the good old Greek of Pelop's isle:
Dorians, I guess, may Dorian talk the while.


Nymph! grant we be at none but one man's pleasure; A rush for you — don't wipe my empty measure.


Praxinoa, hush! behold the Argive's daughter,
The girl who sings as tho' the Muses taught her,
That won the prize for singing Sperchis' ditty,,
Prepares to chaunt Adonis ; something pretty

I'm sure she'll sing: with motion, voice, and eye,
She now preludes — how sweetly, gracefully!


Of Eryx, Golgos, and Idalia, Queen!
My mistress, sporting in thy golden sheen,
Bright Aphrodite ! as the month comes on
Of every year, from dureful Acheron
What an Adonis -- from the gloomy shore
The tender-footed hours to thee restore !
Hours, slowest of the Blest ! yet ever dear,
That wished-for come, and still some blessing bear.
Cypris ! Dione's daughter! thou thro' portal
Of death, 'tis said, hast mortal made immortal,
Sweet Berenice, dropping, ever blest !
Ambrosial dew into her lovely breast.
Wherefore her daughter, Helen-like in beauty,
Arsinöe thy love repays with duty ;
For thine Adonis fairest show ordains,
Bright Queen, of many names and many fanes !
All seasonable fruits ; in silver cases
His gardens sweet ; and alabaster vases
Of Syrian perfumes near his couch are laid ;
Cakes, which with flowers and wheat the women made ;

The shapes of all that creep, or take the wing, With oil or honey wrought, they hither bring ; Here are green shades, with anise shaded more ; And the young Loves him ever hover o'er, As the young nightingales, from branch to branch, Hover and try their wings, before they launch Themselves in the broad Air. But, O ! the sight Of gold and ebony ! of ivory white Behold the pair of eagles ! up they move With his cup-bearer for Saturnian Jove. And see yon couch with softest purple spread, Softer than sleep, the Samian born and bred Will own, and e'en Miletus : that pavilion Queen Cypris has — the nearer one her minion, The rosy-armed Adonis ; whose youth bears The bloom of eighteen, or of nineteen years ; Nor pricks the kiss — the red lip of the boy ; Having her spouse, let Cypris now enjoy. Him will we, ere the dew of dawn is o'er, Bear to the waves that foam upon the shore ; Then with bare bosoms and dishevelled hair, Begin to chaunt the wild and mournful air. Of all the demigods, they say, but one Duly revisits Earth and Acheron —

Thou, dear Adonis ! Agamemnon's might,
Nor Aias, raging like one mad in fight;
Nor true Patroclus ; nor his mother's boast,
Hector, of twenty sons famed, honoured most ;
Nor Pyrrhus, victor from the Trojan siege-
Not one of them enjoyed this privilege ;
Nor the Deucalions ; nor Lapithæ ;
Argive Pelasgi ; nor Pelopidæ.
Now, dear Adonis, fill thyself with glee,
And still returning, still propitious be.


Praxinoa, did ever mortal ear
A sweeter song from sweeter minstrel hear ?
O happy girl ! to know so many things —
Thrice happy girl, that so divinely sings !
But now 'tis time for home : let us be hasting ;
My man's mere vinegar, and most when fasting :
Nor has he broken yet his fast to-day ;
When he's a-hungered, come not in his way.
Farewell, beloved Adonis ! joy to see !
When come, well come to those who welcome thee.




This piece was written in honour of Hiero, a prince illustrious for

the moderation with which he governed, and for his military exploits. The poet inveighs against the avarice of the wealthy men of rank, who neither cultivated in themselves the qualities that deserve glory, nor showed any favour to the poets, by whom a worthy fame is best perpetuated. He then passes to a consideration of the admirable qualities of Hiero, and praises him for his munificence. He prays for the prosperity of Syracuse, and predicts that the fame of Hiero will be known in the remotest regions. At the end of the poem, he invokes the Graces to be ever with him, that he may conciliate the favour of men.

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