Dion and the Sibyls: A Classic, Christian Novel

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Catholic Publication Society, 1872 - English fiction - 223 pages
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Page 200 - So saying, he caught him up, and, without wing Of hippogrif, bore through the air sublime, Over the wilderness and o'er the plain; Till underneath them fair Jerusalem, The holy city, lifted high her towers, And higher yet the glorious temple rear'd Her pile, far off appearing like a mount Of alabaster, topt with golden spires...
Page 97 - Even now he tries," replied Claudius ; " but he is met on either side by the torch. The fiercest beast of the desert shrinks from fire. Prudent and fortunate device ! Lo ! the horse seems at last to have ascertained that he who has this day mounted him is worthy of his services ; do you hear the tread of his hoofs, as he traces the circle of the arena, guided by those steady hands from which flames appear to flow. Faster and faster rushes the steed, always restrained and turned by the outer torch,...
Page 97 - ... the youth darted from the ground with a spring like his first, and he is now on the brute's back as before. He stoops to the horse's neck ; he has caught the bridle in his teeth, and lifts that brave, clear face again. Listen to the multitude ! Oh ! how the euge, euge, thunders frora A hundred thousand sympathetic voices -.
Page 93 - How is he dressed ? Has he his whip and stimuli (spurs) ? He will not need such helps, I surmise." " He has no spurs, and he carries nothing in his hands. He wears that foreign-looking head-gear, the broadrimmed petasus, as a shade, no doubt, against the level rays of the sunset ; for I see he is giving directions to the grooms, and they are contriving to bring the horse round with his head toward the west. Ah ! he thus face.
Page 92 - ... also numerous, their costumes rendering them easily distinguishable. On each side of the large canopied platform of the emperor and the Caesars, with their court, were several seats of honor lined with purple and scarlet cloths, and connected with the platform by continuous pavilion roofs, but having their own benches. Here many ladies and some boys and girls sat. It is in one of these we are ourselves going to take post, invisible but watchful, unheard but hearing. On the seat immediately in...
Page 92 - After a pause of impotent rage, he asked Piso was the crowd of spectators very large ? " It is the largest I ever beheld," answered Piso ; " it would be impossible to count it, or 'to guess the number." " I wish every one present was stone blind at this very moment,
Page 91 - The day when the singular struggle was to occur, the expectation of which had excited such curiosity, arose bright, breezeless, and sultry, and so continued till long past noon ; but the sun was now sinking toward the Tyrrhenian Sea, and a cool, soft air had begun to blow as the hour approached when the nephew of the triumvir was to mount the horse Sejanus, in the presence of such a multitude .as the fields of Formiae had never before beheld, whether in times of peace or times of war.
Page 92 - With these persons, and even with their slave, we have already made more or less acquaintance. One of them the doctors had forbidden to go forth; but he had come. He is a mere child ; his pretty face is shockingly disfigured ; both his eyes are closed and blacked ; all the flesh round them is a discolored and contused mass, his head is bandaged, and every nerve in his countenance is twitching with the furious eagerness and curiosity of one whose organs of sight, if he could only see with them, would...
Page 94 - "The rider himself, when he is fairly seated; but Tiberius will tell him when to mount." " Go on with your description of his dress and his looks. Does he seem to be afraid ? " " He still wears that queer sword; I should have fancied it cumbersome to him. Afraid ! I should say not. No sign of it.
Page 96 - O ye gods ! just as you heard that ponderous thud with which he descended upon his fore-feet, the youth darted from the ground with a spring like his first, and he is now on the brute's back as before. He stoops to the horse's neck ; he has caught the bridle in his teeth, and lifts that...

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