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MORE happy than the gods is he
Dark, dimming mists my eyes surround;Who, soft-reclining, sits by thee;
My ears with hollow murinurs sound.
My limbs with dewy chillness freeze,
On my whole frame pale tremblings seize, This, this, alas! alarm'd my breast,
And, losing colour, sense, and breath,
I seem quite languishing in death.
FRAGMENT I. Ionginus, in his Treatise of the Sublime.
THE Pleinds now no more are seen, 1. More happy than the gods, &c.] There is
Nor shines the silver Moon serene, an epigram in the Anthologia, which seems to be
In dark and dismal clouds o'ercast;
The love appointed hour is past : an imitation of this stanza.
Midnight usurps her sable throne,
Aud yet, alas ! I lie alone.
This seems to have been addressed to an arrogant Longinus has observed, that “this description
| unlettered lady, vain of her beauty and riches. of lore irr Sappho is an exact copy of nature; and WHENE'ER the Fates resume thy breath, that all the circumstances, which follow one an
No brigtt reversion sbalt thou gain, other in such a hurry of sentiments, notwithstand
Unnotic'd thou shalt sink in death, ing they appear repugnant to each other, are re
Nor ev'u thy memory remain : ally such as bappen in the frenzies of love." He l For thy rude hand,
cies of love." He For thy rude band ne'er pluck'd the lovely rose, farther says: “Sappho, having observed the anx- | Which on the mountain of Pieria blows. ieties and tortures inseparable to jealous love, has collected and displayed them all with the most To Pluto's mansions shalt thou go, lively exactness." And Dr. Pearce judiciously ob
The stern inexorable king, serves, that “ in this ode she endeavours to ex Among th' ignoble shades below press that wrath, jealousy, and anguish, which A vain, ignoble thing; distracted her with such a variety of torture. And While honour'd Sappho's Muse-embellish'd name therefore, in the following verses of Boileau's trans- Shall flourish in eternity of fame. "lation the true sense is mistaken :
dans les doux transports, où s'egare Fragment 1.-6. And yet, alas! I lie alone) A mon ame.
shepherd in she ldyllium entitled OAPIETTE (which “ And,
is generally ascribed to Theocritus, but by Daniel - je tombe en des douces langueurs. Heinsius, is attributed to Moschus) wishes a cityAs the word doux will by no means express the
girl, who had slighted him, the punishment of live rage and distraction of Sappho's mind : it being ing and dying an old maid. always used in a contrary sense." There are two
may you ne'er find one lines in Phillips's translation of this ode which are Worthy your love in country or in town, liable to the same objection :
But, to a virgin-bed condemn'd, for ever lie alone! For while I gaz'd, in transport tost.
Frag. 11.-Sappho is not the only good writer, My blood with gentle horrours thrill'a.
who, from a due sense of the excellence of their Mr. Addison, in his Spectator on this ode, re- works, have promised themselves immortality.lates the following remarkable circumstance from Virgil has expressed himself in the same manner Plutarch: “That author, in the famous story of at the beginning of the third Georgic:-Horace Antiochus, who fell in love with Stratonice, his in several places, particularly in the ode, Esegi mother-in-law, and (not daring to discover his monuinentum :--but Ovid, in the strongest terins: passion) pretended to be confined to his bed by sickness, tells us, that Erasistratus, the physician, found out the nature of his distem yer by those | I've now compil'd a work, which nor the rage symptoms of love which he had learned from Sap- of Jove, nor fire, nor sword, nor eating age, pho's writings. Stratonice was in the room of the Is able to destroy love-sick prince, when these symptoms discovered 5. For thy rude hand ne'er pluck'd the lovely themselves to his physician; and it is probable,
rose, that tbey were not very different from those which Which on the mountain of Pieria blocs.! Sappho here describes in 'a lover sitting by his mistress.'' Madame Dacier says, that this ode of
Pieria was a mountain in Macedonia, dedicated to Sappho is preserved entire in Longinus, whereas,
the Muses : by this expression Sappho seems to whoever looks into that author's quotation of it
hint, that the lady who furnished the occasion of will find, that there must at least have been an
this satire was not conversant in the politer stue other stanza, which is not transmitted to us.
| dies, nor acyuainted with the Muses.
For, by your sacred raptures fir'd,
The poet warbled what the Muse inspir'd.
Meniscus, mourning for his hapless son,
The toil-experienc'd fisher, Pelagon,
Epigram I.Longepierre observes, that it was
usual among the ancients to place on the tombs
of their friends the instruments peculiar to the art
or mystery which they exercised when alive. Of
this we have examples in Homer and Virgil. In
the eleventh book of the Odyssey, ver. 75, Elpe-
nor makes this request to Ulysses in Hell:
Inuice Te Mos x evas, &c.
| A tomb along the watery margin raise,
| The tomb with manly arms and trophies grace,
To show posterity Elpenor was:
Fix the smooth oar, and bid me live to fame.
A rising tomb, the silent dead to grace,
Fast by the roarings of the main we place;
The rising tomb a lofty column bore,
And high above it rose the tapering oar.
In the sixth book of the Æneid, ver. 232, Æneas
suaque arma viro, remumque, tubamque.
This done; to solemnize the warrior's doom,
The pious hero rais'd a lofty tomb;
The towering top his well-known ensigns bore,
His arms, his once-lov'd trump, and tapering oar.
These sort of epitaphs were more general, con-
cise, and instructive, than those which afterwards
| prevailed. Longepierre.
Madame Dacier also observes, that emblems of
on their monuments, as in this epigram on a wee
man named Myro:
My Jaube, umiya Muous imi onua ti aiurowy,
The whip denoted, that she used to chastise her
servants; the bow, that her mind was always
she loved to stay at home; the dog, that she was
fond of her children; and the owl, that she was
assiduous io spinning and tapestry, which were the
works of Pallas, to whom the owl was consecrated.
sbire, is an old picture, with a device which seems
drawn by Hans Holbein, and represents a woman
il side, her finger on her lips, and a dove on her
head. Under it is this inscription:
Has plac'd upon his tomb a net and oar,
Epig. II. From their fair heads the graceful The badges of a painful life and poor.
The ceremony of cutting off the hair, among EPIGRAM II.
the ancients, in honour of the dead, was a token The much-lov'd Timas lodges in this tomb, of a violent affection. Thus Achilles, in the twenBy Death insatiate ravish'd in her bloom; ty-third book of the Iliad, offers bis to Patroclus. Ere yet a bride, the beauteous maid was led And the little Cupids tear their hair for grief at To dreary coasts, and Pluto's mournful bed. the death of Adonis : (See Bion.) Herodotus tells Her lov'd companions pay the rites of woe, us that Mardonius cut off his, after his defeat. All, all, alas ! the living can bestow;
Many more instances of this extraordinary cusFrom their fair heads the graceful curls they shear, tom might be produced; but these will, probably, Place on her tomb, and drop the tender tear. be thought sufficient. I shall finish my observa
tions on this excellent poetess with an ingenious Uxor amet, sileat, servet, nec ubique vagetur :
surmise in regard to the above-mentioned certo Hoc testudo docet, claves, labra, junctaque turtur,
mony: It was practised, perhaps, not only in : Which has been thus translated;
token of sorrow, but might also have a concealed Be frugal, ye wives, live in silence and love, meaning, that as the hair was cut from the bead, Nor abroad ever gossip and roam !
and was never more to be joined to it, so was the This learn from the keys, the lips, and the dove,
dead for ever cut off from the living, never more And tortoise, still dwelling at home!