Hut that by quick command from sovran Jove I was despatched for their defence
and guard : And listen why ; for I will tell you now What never yet was heard in
tale or song. From old or modern bard, in hall or bower. Bacchus, that first from
... with his soft pipe and smooth-dittied song, Well knows to still the wild winds
when they roar, And hush the waving woods ; nor of less faith, And in this office of
his mountain Watch, Likeliest, and nearest to the present aid Of this occasion.
Song. Sweet Echo, sweetest nymph, that liv'st unseen Within thy airy shell,8 By
slow Meander's margent green, And in the violet-embroidered vale, Where the
love-lorn nightingale Nightly to thee her sad song mourneth well ; Canst thou not
Whom certain these rough shades did never breed, Unless the goddess that in
rural shrine Dwell'st here with Pan, or Sylvan ; by blest song Forbidding every
bleak unkindly fog Nay, gentle shepherd, ill is lost that praise That is 20 COMUS.
A paraphrase of Ariel's song in the " Tempest : " — " Where the bee sucks, there
lurk I." " P. 78. Purfled.] — Flourished, embroidered with the needle. 53 P. 78.
Sadly sits the Assyrian queen. Venus, so called, because she was first
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I much prefer John Kinsella's updated version 'A Dialogic Mask' which, rather engagingly, includes John Milton's original in a beautifully produced hardback. Comus is available from Arc Publications.