§ 1.1 BOOK 1
The first contains Cronion, light-bearing ravisher of the nymph, and the starry heaven battered by Typhon's hands.
Tell the tale, Goddess, of Cronides' courier with fiery flame, the gasping travail which the thunderbolt brought with sparks for wedding-torches, the lightning in waiting upon Semele's nuptials; tell the naissance of Bacchos twice-born, whom Zeus lifted still moist from the fire, a baby half-complete born without midwife; how with shrinking hands he cut the incision in his thigh and carried him in his man's womb, father and gracious mother at once – and well he remembered another birth, when his own head conceived, when his temple was big with child, and he carried that incredible unbegotten lump, until he shot out Athena scintillating in her armour.
§ 1.11 Bring me the fennel, rattle the cymbals, ye Muses! put in my hand the wand of Dionysos whom I sing: but bring me a partner for your dance in the neighbouring island of Paros, Proteus of many turns, that he may appear in all his diversity of shapes, since I twang my harp to a diversity of songs. For if, as a serpent, he should glide along his winding trail, I will sing my god's achievement, how with ivy-wreathed wand he destroyed the horrid hosts of Giants serpent-haired. If as a lion he shake his bristling mane, I will cry Euoi! to Bacchos on the arm of buxom Rheia, stealthily draining the breast of the lionbreeding goddess. If as a leopard he shoot up into the air with a stormy leap from his pads, changing shape like a master-craftsman, I will hymn the son of Zeus, how he slew the Indian nation, with his team of pards riding down the elephants. If he make his figure like the shape of a boar, I will sing Thyone's son, love-sick for Aura the desirable, boarslayer, daughter of Cybele, mother of the third Bacchos late-born. If he be mimic water, I will sing Dionysos diving into the bosom of the brine, when Lycurgos armed himself. If he become a quivering tree and tune a counterfeit whispering, I will tell of Icarios, how in the jubilant winepress his feet crushed the grape in rivalry.
§ 1.34 Bring me the fennel, Mimallons! On my shoulders in place of the wonted kirtle, bind, I pray, tight over my breast a dapple-back fawnskin, full of the perfume of Maronian nectar; and let Homer and deep-sea Eidothea keep the rank skin of the seals for Menelaos. Give me the jocund tambours and the goatskins! but leave for another the double-sounding pipe with its melodious sweetness, or I may offend my own Apollo; for he rejects the sound of breathing reeds, ever since he put to shame Marsyas and his god-defiant pipes, and bared every limb of the skin-stript shepherd, and hung his skin on a tree to belly in the breezes.
Then come now, Goddess, begin with the long search and the travels of Cadmos.
§ 1.46 Once on the Sidonian beach Zeus as a high-horned bull imitated an amorous bellow with his changeling throat, and felt a charming thrill; little Eros heaved up a woman, with his two arms encircling her middle. And while he lifted her, at his side the sea-faring bull curved his neck downwards, spread under the girl to mount, sinking sideways on his knees, and stretching his back submissive, he raised up Europa; then the bull pressed on, and his floating hoof furrowed the water of the trodden brine noiselessly with forbearing footsteps. High above the sea, the girl throbbing with fear navigated on bullback, unmoving, unwetted. If you saw her you would think it was Thetis perhaps, or Galateia, or Earthshaker's bedfellow, or Aphrodite seated on Triton's neck. Aye, Seabluehair marvelled at the waddle-foot voyage; Triton heard the delusive lowing of Zeus, and bellowed an echoing note to Cronos' son with his conch by way of wedding song; Nereus pointed out to Doris the woman carried along, mingling wonder with fear as he saw the strange voyager and his horns.
§ 1.65 But the maiden, a light freight for her bull-barge, sailed along oxriding, with a horn for steering-oar, and trembled at the high heaving of her watery course, while Desire was the seaman. And artful Boreas bellied out all her shaking robe with amorous breath, love-sick himself, and in secret jealousy, whistled on the pair of unripe breasts. As when one of the Nereids has peeped out of the sea, and seated upon a dolphin cuts the flooding calm, balanced there while she paddles with a wet hand and pretends to swim, while the watery wayfarer half-seen rounds his back and carries her dry through the brine, while the cleft tail of the fish passing through the sea scratches the surface in its course, – so the bull lifted his back: and while the bull stretched, his drover Eros flogged the servile neck with his charmed girdle, and lifting bow on shoulder like a pastoral staff, shepherded Hera's bridegroom with Cypris' crook, driving him to Poseidon's watery pasture. Shame purpled the maiden cheek of Pallas unmothered, when she spied Cronion ridden by a woman. So Zeus clove the course with watery furrow, but the deep sea did not quench his passion – for did not the water conceive Aphrodite by a heavenly husbandry, and bring her forth from the deeps? Thus a girl steered the bull's unboisterous passage, herself at once both pilot and cargo.
§ 1.90 One saw this mimic ship of the sea, alive and nimble-kneed, – an Achaian seaman passing by, and he cried out in this fashion: O my eyes, what's this miracle? how comes it that he cuts the waves with his legs, and swims over the barren sea, this land-pasturing bull? Navigable earth – is that the new creation of Cronides? Shall the farmer's wain trace a watery rut through the brine-sprent deep? That's a bastard voyage I descry upon the waves! Surely Selene has gotten an unruly bull, and leaves the sky to traipse over the high seas! Or no – deepwater Thetis drives a coach on a floating racecourse! This sea-bull is a creature very different from the land-bull, has a fishlike shape; must be a Nereid with other looks, not naked now, but in long flowing robes, driving this bull unbridled to march afoot on the waters, a new fashion that! If it is Demeter wheatenhaired, cleaving the gray back of the sea with waterfaring oxhoof, then thou, Poseidon, must have turned landlubber and migrated to the thirsty back of earth, afoot behind the plow, and cut Demeter's furrow with thy sea-vessel, blown by land-winds, tramping a voyage on the soil! Bull, you are astray out of your country; Nereus is no bulldrover, Proteus no plowman, Glaucos no gardener; no marshground, no meadows in the billows; on the barren sea there's no tillage, but sailors cut the ship-harbouring water with a steering-oar, and do not split with iron; Earthshaker's hinds do not sow in the furrows, but the sea's plant is seaweed, sea's sowing is water, the sailor is the farmer, the only furrow is the ship's grain and wake, the hooker is the plow.
§ 1.118 But how came you to have dealings with a maid? Do bulls also go mad with love, and ravish women? Has Poseidon played a trick, and ravished a girl under the shape of a horned bull like a river-god? Has he woven another plot to follow the bedding of Tyro, just as he did the other day, when the watery paramour came trickling up with counterfeit ripples like a bastard Enipeus?
§ 1.125 So the Hellenic sailor spoke his amazement as he passed by. Then the girl presaged her union with the bull; and tearing her hair, she broke out in lamentable tones: Deaf Water, voiceless Coasts! Say to the Bull, if cattle can hear and hearken, 'Merciless, spare a girl!' Ye Coasts, pray tell my loving father that Europa has left her native land, seated upon a bull, my ravisher, my sailor, and I think, my bed-fellow. Take these ringlets to my mother, ye circling Breezes. Aye Boreas, I conjure thee, receive me on thy pinions in the air, as thou didst ravish thine Athenian bride! But stay, my voice! or I may see Boreas in love, like the Bull! So the girl spoke, as the bull ferried her on his back.
§ 1.137 Then Cadmos, passing in his travels from land to land, followed the never-staying tracks of the bull turned bridesman. He came to the bloodstained cave of Arima, when the mountains had moved from their seats and were beating at the gate of inexpugnable Olympos, when the gods took wing above the rainless Nile, like a flight of birds far out of reach, oaring their strange track in the winds of heaven, and the seven zones of the sky were sore assailed.
§ 1.145 This was the reason. Zeus Cronides had hurried to Pluto's bed, to beget Tantalos, that mad robber of the heavenly cups; and he laid his celestial weapons well hidden with his lightning in a deep cavern. From underground the thunderbolts belched out smoke, the white cliff was blackened; hidden sparks from a fire-barbed arrow heated the watersprings; torrents boiling with foam and steam poured down the Mygdonian gorge, until it boomed again.
§ 1.154 Then at a nod from his mother, the Earth, Cilician Typhoeus stretched out his hands, and stole the snowy tools of Zeus, the tools of fire; then spreading his row of rumble-rattling throats, he yelled as his warcry the cries of all wild beasts together: the snakes that grew from him waved over his leopards' heads, licked the grim lions' manes, girdled with their curly tails spiral-wise round the bulls' horns, mingled the shooting poison of their long thin tongues with the foam-spittle of the boars.
§ 1.163 Now he laid the gear of Cronides in a cubby-hole of the rock, and spread the harvest of his clambering hands into the upper air. ff And that battalion of hands! One throttled Cynosuris beside the ankle-tip of Olympos; one gripped the Parrhasian Bear's mane as the rested on heaven's axis, and dragged her off; another caught the Oxdrover and knocked him out; another dragged Phosphoros, and in vain under the circling turning-post sounded the whistling of the heavenly lash in the morning; he carried off the Dawn, and held in the Bull, so that timeless, half-complete, horsewoman Season rested her team. And in the shadowy curls of his serpenthair heads the light was mingled with gloom; the Moon shone rising in broad day with the Sun.
§ 1.176 Still there was no rest. The Giant turned back, and passed from north to south; he left one pole and stood by the other. With a long arm he grasped the Charioteer, and flogged the back of hailstorming Aigoceros; he dragged the two Fishes out of the sky and cast them into the sea; he buffeted the Ram, that navel star of Olympos, who balances with equal pin day and darkness over the fiery orb of his spring-time neighbour. With trailing feet Typhoeus mounted close to the clouds: spreading abroad the far-scattered host of his arms, he shadowed the bright radiance of the unclouded sky by darting forth his tangled army of snakes. One of them ran up right through the rim of the polar circuit and skipt upon the backbone of the heavenly Serpent, hissing his mortal challenge. One made for Cepheus's daughter, and with starry fingers twisting a ring as close as the other, enchained Andromeda, bound already, with a second bond aslant under her bands. Another, a horned serpent, entwined about the forked horns of the Bull's horned head of shape like his own, and dangled coiling over the Bull's brow, tormenting with open jaws the Hyades opposite ranged like a crescent moon. Poison-spitting tangles of serpents in a bunch girdled the Ox-drover. Another made a bold leap, when he saw another Snake in Olympos, and jumped around the Ophiuchos's arm that held the viper; then curving his neck and coiling his crawling belly, he braided a second chaplet about Ariadne's crown.
§ 1.202 Then Typhoeus manyarmed turned to both ends, shaking with his host of arms the girdle of Zephryos and the wing of Euros opposite, dragging first Phosphoros, then Hesperos and the crest of Atlas. Many a time in the weedy gulf he seized Poseidon's chariot, and dragged it from the depths of the sea to land; again he pulled out a stallion by his brine-soaked mane from the undersea manger, and threw the vagabond nag to the vault of heaven, shooting his shot at Olympos – hit the Sun's chariot, and the horses on their round whinnied under the yoke. Many a time he took a bull at rest from his rustic plowtree and shook him with a threatening hand, bellow as he would, then shot him against the Moon like another moon, and stayed her course, then rushed hissing against the goddess, checking with the bridle her bulls' white yoke-straps, while he poured out the mortal whistle of a poison-spitting viper.
§ 1.219 But Titan Mene would not yield to the attack. Battling against the Giant's heads, like-horned to hers, she cared many a scar on the shining orb of her bull's horn; and Selene's radiant cattle bellowed amazed at the gaping chasm of Typhaon's throat. The Seasons undaunted armed the starry battalions, and the lines of heavenly Constellations in a disciplined circle came shining to the fray. A varied host maddened the upper air with clamour and with flame: some whose portion was Boreas, others the back of Lips in the west, or the eastern zones or the recesses of the south. The unshaken congregation of the fixt stars with unanimous acclamation left their places and caught up their travelling fellows. The axis passing through the heaven's hollow and fixt upright in the midst, groaned at the sound. Orion the hunter, seeing these tribes of wild beasts, drew his sword; the blade of the Tanagraian brand sparkled bright as its master made ready for attack; his thirsty Dog, shooting light from his fiery chin, bubbled up in his starry throat and let out a hot bark, and blew out the steam from his teeth against Typhaon's beasts instead of the usual hare. The sky was full of din, and, answering the seven-zoned heaven, the seven-throated cry of the Pleiads raised the war-shout from as many throats; and the planets as many again banged out an equal noise.
§ 1.244 Radiant Ophiuchos, seeing the Giant's direful snaky shape, from his hands so potent against evil shook off the gray coils of the fire-bred serpents, and shot the dappled coiling missile, while tempests roared round his flames – the viper-arrows flew slanting and maddened the air. Then the Archer let fly a shaft, – that bold comrade of fish-like Aigoceros; the Dragon, divided between the two Bears, and visible within the circle of the Wain, brandished the fiery trail of the heavenly spine; the Oxherd, Erigone's neighbour, attendant driver of the Wain, hurled his crook with flashing arm; beside the knee of the Image and his neighbour the Swan, the starry Lyre presaged the victory of Zeus.
§ 1.258 Now Typhoeus shifted to the rocks, leaving the air, to flog the seas. He grasped and shook the peak of Corycios, and crushing the flood of the river that belongs to Cilicia, joined Tarsos and Cydnos together in one hand; then hurled a volley of cliffs upon the mustered waves of the brine. As the Giant advanced with feet trailing in the briny flood, his bare loins were seen dry through the water, which broke heavy against his mid-thigh crashing and booming; his serpents afloat sounded the charge with hissings from brine-beaten throats, and spitting poison led the attack upon the sea. There stood Typhon in the fish-giving sea, his feet firm in the depths of the weedy bottom, his belly in the air and crushed in clouds: hearing the terrible roar from the mane-bristling lions of his giant's head, the sea-lion lurked in the oozy gulf. There was no room in the deep for all its phalanx of leviathans, since the Earthborn monster covered a whole sea, larger than the land, with flanks that no sea could cover. The seals bleated, the dolphins hid in the deep water; the manyfooted squid, a master of craft, weaving his trailing web of crisscross knots, stuck fast on his familiar rock, making his limbs look like a pattern on the stone. All the world was a-tremble: the love-maddened murry herself, drawn by her passion for the serpent's bed, shivered under the god-desecrating breath of these seafaring serpents. The waters piled up and touched Olympos with precipitous seas; as the streams mounted on high, the bird never touched by rain found the sea his neighbour, and washed himself. Typhoeus, holding a counterfeit of the deep-sea trident, with one earthshaking flip from his enormous hand broke off an island at the edge of the continent which is the kerb of the brine, circled it round and round, and hurled the whole thing like a ball. And while the Giant waged his war, his hurtling arms drew near to the stars, and obscured the sun, as they attacked Olympos, and cast the precipitous crag.
§ 1.294 Now after the frontier of the deep, after the well-laid foundation of the earth, this bastard Zeus armed his hand with fire-barbed thunderbolt: raising the gear of Zeus was hard work for the monster Typhoeus with two hundred furious hands, so great was the weight; but Cronion would lightly lift it with one hand. No clouds were about the Giant: against his dry arms, the thunder let out a dull-sounding note booming gently without a clap, and in the drought of the air scarcely did a thirsty dew trickle in snowflakes without a drop in them; the lightning was dim, and only a softish flame shone sparkling shamefacedly, like smoke shot with flame. The thunderbolts felt the hands of a novice, and all their manly blaze was unmanned. Often they slipped out of those many many hands, and went leaping of themselves; the brands went astray, missing the familiar hand of their heavenly master. As a man beats a horse that loathes the bit, – some stranger, a novice untaught, flogging a restive nag, as he tries again and again in vain, and the defiant beast knows by instinct the changeling hand of an unfamiliar driver, leaping madly, rearing straight into the air with hind-hooves planted immovable, lifting the forelegs and pawing out to the front, raising the neck till the mane is shaken abroad over both shoulders at once: so the monster laboured with this hand or that to lift the fugitive flash of the roving thunderbolt.
§ 1.321 Well, at the very time when Cadmos paid his visit to Arima in his wanderings, the seafaring bull set down the girl from his withers, quite dry, upon the shore by Dicte; but Hera saw Cronides shaken with passion, and mad with jealousy she called out with an angry laugh:
§ 1.326 Phoibos, go and stand by your father, or some plowman may catch Zeus and put him to some earth-shaking plowtree. I wish one would catch him and put him to the plow! Then I could shout to my lord – 'Learn to bear two goads now, Cupid's (Eros's') and the farmer's! You must be verily Lord of Pastures, my fine Archer, and shepherd your parent, or cattle-driver Selene may put Cronides under the yoke, she may score Zeus's back with her merciless lash when she is off to herdsman Endymion's bed in a hurry! Zeus your Majesty! it is a pity Io did not see you coming like that to court her, when she was a heifer with horns on her forehead! she might have bred you a little bull as horny as his father! Look out for Hermes! The professional cattle-lifter may think he is catching a bull and steal his own father! He may give his harp once again to your son Phoibos, as price for the ravisher ravished. But what can I do? If only Argus were still alive, shining all over with sleepless eyes, that he might be Hera's drover, and drag Zeus to some inaccessible pasture, and prod his flanks with a crook!'
§ 1.344 So much for Hera. But Cronides put off his bull-faced form, and in the shape of a young man ran round the innocent girl. He touched her limbs, loosed first the bodice about the maid's bosom, pressed as if by chance the swelling circle of the firm breast, kissed the tip of her lip, then silently undid the holy girdle of unwedded virginity, so well guarded, and plucked the fruit of love hardly ripe.
§ 1.352 Soon her womb swelled, quick with twin progeny; and Zeus the husband passed over his bride with the divine offspring in her womb, to Asterion, a consort of rich fortune. Then rising beside the Charioteer's ankle the bridegroom Bull of Olympos sparkled with stars, he who keeps his dewloving back for the Sun in the springtime, crouching upon his hams across the path as he rises: half submerged in the sea, he shows himself holding out his right foot towards Orion, and at evening quickens his pace into the circle and passes the Charioteer who rises with him to run his course. So he was established in the heavens.
§ 1.363 But Typhoeus was no longer to hold the gear of Zeus. For now Zeus Cronides along with Archer Eros left the circling pole, and met roving Cadmos amid the mountains on his wandering search; then he devised with him an ingenious plan, and entwined the deadly threads of Moira's spindle for Typhon. And Goatherd Pan who went with him gave Zeus Almighty cattle and sheep and rows of horned goats. Then he built a hut with mats of wattled reeds and fixed it on the ground: he put on Cadmos a shepherd's dress, so that no one could know him in disguise, when he had clad his sham herdsman in this make-believe costume; he gave clever Cadmos the deceiving panpipes, part of the plot to pilot Typhaon to his death.
§ 1.377 Now Zeus called the counterfeit herdsman and the winged controller of generation, and disclosed this one common plan: Look alive, Cadmos, pipe away and there shall be fine weather in heaven! Delay, and Olympos is scourged! for Typhoeus is armed with my heavenly weapons. Only the aegis-cape is left me; but what will my aegis do fighting with Typhon's thunderbolt? I fear old Cronos may laugh aloud, I am shy of the proud neck of my lordly adversary Iapetos! I fear Hellas even more, that mother of romances – what if one of that nation call Typhon Lord of Rain, or Highest, and Ruling in the Heights, defiling my name! Become a herdsman for one day-dawn; make a tune on your mindbefooling shepherd's pipes, and save the Shepherd of the Universe, that I may not hear the noise of Cloud-gatherer Typhoeus, the thunders of a new impostor Zeus, that I may stop his battling with lightnings and volleying with thunderbolts! If the blood of Zeus is in you, and the breed of Inachian Io, bewitch Typhon's wits by the sovereign remedy of your guileful pipes and their tune! I will give you ample recompense for your service, two gifts: I will make you saviour of the world's harmony, and the husband of the lady Harmonia. You also, Love, primeval founder of fecund marriage, bend your bow, and the universe is no longer adrift. If all things come from you, friendly shepherd of life, draw one shot more and save all things. As fiery god, arm yourself against Typhon, and by your help let the fiery thunderbolts return to my hand. All-vanquisher, strike one with your fire, and may your charmed shot catch one whom Cronion did not defeat; and may he have madness from the mind-bewitching tune of Cadmos, as much as I had passion for Europa's embrace!
§ 1.409 But Cadmos tuned up the deceitful notes of his harmonious reeds, as he reclined under a neighbouring tree in the pasturing woodland; wearing the country garb of a real herdsman, he sent the deluding tune to Typhaon's ears, puffing his cheeks to blow the soft breath. The Giant loved music, and when he heard this delusive melody, he leapt up and dragged along his viperish feet; he left in a cave the flaming weapons of Zeus with Mother Earth to keep them, and followed the notes to seek the neighbouring tune of the pipes which delighted his soul. There he was seen by Cadmos near the bushes, who was sore afraid and hid in a cleft of the rock. But the monster Typhoeus with head high in air saw him trying to hide himself, and beckoned with voiceless signs, nor did he understand the trick in this beautiful music; then face to face with the shepherd, he held out one right hand, not seeing the net of destruction, and with his middle face, blood-red and human in shape, he laughed aloud and burst into empty boasts:
§ 1.427 Why do you fear me, goatherd? Why do you cover your eyes with your hand? A fine feat I should think it to pursue a mortal man, after Cronion! A fine feat to carry off panspipes alone with the lightning! What have reeds to do with flaming thunderbolts? Keep your pipes alone, since Typhoeus possesses another kind of organ, the Olympian, which plays by itself! There sits Zeus, without his clouds, hands unrumbling, none of his usual noise – he could do with your pipes. Let him have your handful of reeds to play. I don't join worthless reeds to other reeds in a row and wave them about, but I roll up clouds upon clouds into a lump, and discharge a bang all at once with rumblings all over the sky!
§ 1.439 Let's have a friendly match, if you like. Come on, you make music and sound your reedy tune, I will crash my thundery tune. You puff our your cheek all swollen with wind, and blow with your lips, but Boreas is my blower, and my thunderbolts boom when his breath flogs them. Drover, I will pay you for your pipes: for when I shall hold the sceptre instead of Zeus, and drive the heavenly throne, you shall come with me; leave the earth and I will bring you to heaven pipes and all, with your flock too if you like, you shall not be parted from your herd. I'll settle your goats over the backbone of Aigoceros, one of the same breed; or near the Charioteer, who pushes the shining Olenian She-goat in Olympos with his sparkling arm. I'll put your cattle beside the rainy Bull's broad shoulder and make them stars rising in Olympos, or near the dewy turning-point where Selene's cattle send out a windy moo from their life-warming throats. You will not want your little hut. Instead of your bushes, let your flock go flashing with the ethereal Kids: I will make them another crib, to shine beside the Asses' Crib and as good as theirs. Be a star yourself instead of a drover, where the Ox-driver is seen; wield a starry goad yourself, and drive the Bear's Lycaonian wain. Happy shepherd, be heavenly Typhon's guest at table: tune up on earth to-day, to-morrow in heaven! You shall have ample recompense for your song: I will establish your face in the starlit circle of heaven, and join your tuneful pipes to the heavenly Harp. If you like, I will give you Athena for your holy bride: if you do not care for Grayeyes, take Leto, or Charis, or Cythereia, or Artemis, or Hebe to wife. Only don't ask me for my Hera's bed. If you have a horse-master brother who can manage a team, let him take Helios' fiery four-in-hand. If you want to wield the goatskin cape of Zeus, being a goatherd, I will make you a present of that too. I mean to march into Olympos caring nothing for Zeus unarmed; and what could Athena do to me with her armour? – a female! Srike up 'See the Conquering Typhon comes,' you herdsman! Sing the new lawful sovereign of Olympos in me, bearing he sceptre of Zeus and his robe of lightning!
§ 1.481 He spoke, and Adrasteia took note of his words thus far. But when Cadmos understood that the son of Earth had been carried by Fate's thread into his hunting-net, a willing captive, struck by the delightful sting of those soul-delighting reeds, unsmiling he uttered this artful speech:
§ 1.486 You liked the little tune of my pipes, when you heard it; tell me, what would you do when I strike out a hymn of victory on the harp of seven strings, to honour your throne? Indeed, I matched myself against Phoibos with his heavenly quill, and beat him with my own harp, but Cronides burnt to dust my fine ringing strings with a thunderbolt, to please his beaten son! But if ever I find again the swelling sinews, I will strike up a tune with my quills to bewitch all the trees and the mountains and the temper of wild beasts. I will drag back Oceanos, that coronet self-wreathed about the earth and old as earth herself, I will make him hasten and bring his stream rolling back upon himself round the same road. I will stay the army of fixed stars, and the racing planets, and Phaethon, and Selene's carriage-pole. But when you strike Zeus and the gods with your thunderbolt, do leave only the Archer, that while Typhon feasts at his table, I and Phoibos may have a match, and see which will beat which in celebrating mighty Typhon! And do not kill the dancing Pierides, that they may weave the women's lay harmonious with our manly song when Phoibos or your shepherd leads the merry dance!
§ 1.507 He finished; and Typhoeus bowed his flashing eyebrows and shook his locks: every hair belched viper-poison and drenched the hills. Quick he returned to his cave, took up and brought out the sinews of Zeus, and gave them to crafty Cadmos as the guest's gift; they had fallen on the ground in the battle with Typhaon.
§ 1.513 The deceitful shepherd thanked him for the immortal gift; he handled the sinews carefully, as if they were to be strung on the harp, and hid them in a hole in the rock, kept safe for Zeus Giant-slayer. Then with pursed-up lips he let out a soft and gentle breath, pressing the reeds and stealing the notes, and sounded a tune more dainty than ever. Typhoeus pricked up all his many ears and listened to the melody, and knew nothing. The Giant was bewitched, while the false shepherd whistled by his side, as if sounding the rout of the immortals with his pipes; but he was celebrating the soon-coming victory of Zeus, and singing the fate of Typhon to Typhon sitting by his side. So he excited him to frenzy even more; and as a lusty youth enamoured is bewitched by delicious thrills by the side of a maiden his age-mate, and gazes now at the silvery round of her charming face, now at a straying curl of her thick hair, now again at a rosy hand, or notes the circle of her blushing breast pressed by the bodice, and watches the bare neck, as he delights to let his eye run over and over her body never satisfied, and never will leave his girl – so Typhoeus yielded his whole soul to Cadmos for the melody to charm.
§ 2.1 BOOK 2
The second has Typhon's battle ranging through the stars, and lightning, and the struggles of Zeus, and the triumph of Olympos.
And so Cadmos Agenorides remained there by the ankle of the pasturing woodland, drawing his lips to and fro along the tops of the pipes, as a pretended goatherd; but Zeus Cronides, unespied, uncaught, crept noiseless into the cave, and armed himself with his familiar fires a second time. And a cloud covered Cadmos beside his unseen rock, lest Typhoeus might learn this crafty plan, and the secret thief of the thunderbolts, and wise too late might kill the turncoat herdsman. But all the Giant wanted was, to hear more and more of the mind-bewitching melody with its delicious thrill. When a sailor hears the Siren's perfidious song, and bewitched by the melody, he is dragged to a self-chosen fate too soon; no longer he cleaves the waves, no longer he whitens the blue water with his oars unwetted now, but falling into the net of melodious Fate, he forgets to steer, quite happy, caring not for the seven starry Pleiades and the Bear's circling course: so the monster, shaken by the breath of that deceitful tune, welcomed with delight the wound of the pipes which was his escort to death.
§ 2.20 But now the shepherd's reed breathing melody fell silent, and a mantling shadow of cloud his the piper as he cut off his tune. Typhoeus rushed head-in-air with the fury of battle into the cave's recesses, and searched with hurried madness for the wind-coursing thunderbolt and the lightning unapproachable; with inquiring foot he chased the fire-shotten gleam of the stolen thunderbolt, and found an empty cave! Too late he learnt the craft-devising schemes of Cronides and the subtle machinations of Cadmos: flinging the rocks about he leapt upon Olympos. While he dragged his crooked track with snaky foot, he spat out showers of poison from his throat; the mountain torrents were swollen, as the monster showered fountains from the viperfish bristles of his high head; as he marched, the solid earth did sink, and the steady ground of Cilicia shook to its foundations under those dragon-feet; the flanks of craggy Tauros crashed with a rumbling din, until the neighbouring Pamphylian hills danced with fear; the underground caverns boomed, the rocky headlands trembled, the hidden places shook, the shore slipt away as a thrust of his earthshaking foot loosened the sands.
§ 2.42 Neither pasture nor wild beasts were spared. Rawravening bears made a meal for the jaws of Typhaon's bear-heads; tawny bodies of chest-bristling lions were swallowed by the gaping jaws of his own lion-heads; his snaky throats devoured the cold shapes of earthfed serpents; birds of the air, flying through untrodden space, there met neighbours to gulp them down their throats – he found the eagle in his home, and that was the food he relished most, because it is called the Bird of Zeus. He ate up the plowing ox, and had no pity when he saw the galled neck bloody from the yoke-straps.
§ 2.53 He made the rivers dust, as he drank the water after his meal, beating off the troops of Naiads from the river-beds: the Naiad of the deeps made her way tripping afoot as if the river were a roadway, until she stood, unshod, with dry limbs, she a nymph, the creature of watery ways, and as the girl struggled, thrusting one foot after another along the thirsty bed of the stream, she found her knees held fast to the bottom in a muddy prison.
§ 2.60 The old shepherd, terrified to descry the manifold visage of this maddened monster, dropt his pipes and ran away; the goatherd, seeing the wide-scattered host of his arms, threw his reed flying to the winds; the hard-working plowman sprinkled not the new-scored ground with corn thrown behind him, nor covered it with earth, nor cut with earthshaking iron the land furrowed already by Typhon's guiding hand, but let his oxen go loose. The earth's hollows were bared, as the monster's missile cleft it. He freed the liquid vein, and as the chasm opened, the lower channel bubbled up with flooding springs, pouring out the water from under the uncovered bosom of the ground, and rocks were thrown up, and falling from the air in torrential showers were hidden in the sea, making the waters dry land: and the hurtling masses of earth rooted themselves firmly as the footings of new-made islands. ff Trees were levered up from the earth by the roots, and the fruit fell on the ground untimely; the fresh-flowering garden was laid waste, the rosy meadows withered; the West Wind was beaten by the dry leaves of whirling cypresses. Phoibos sang a dirge in lamentable tones for his devastated iris, twining a sorrowful song, and lamented far more bitterly than for his clusters of Amyclean flowers, when the laurel by his side was struck. Pan in anguish uplifted his fallen pine; Grayeyes, remembering Moria, groaned over her broken olive-tree, the Attic nymph who brought her a city. The Paphian also wept when her anemone was laid in the dust, and mourned long over the fragrant tresses of flowercups from her rosebed laid in the dust, while she tore her soft hair. Deo mourned over the half-grown corn destroyed and no longer celebrated the harvest home. The Hadryad nymphs lamented the lost shade of their yearsmate trees.
§ 2.94 One Hamadryad leapt unveiled from the cloven shaft of a bushy laurel, which had grown with her growth, and another maiden stepping out of her pine-tree appeared beside her neighbour the exiled nymph, and said: Laurel Hamadryad, so shy of the marriage bed, let us both take one road, lest you see Phoibos, lest I espy Pan! Woodmen, pass by these trees! Do not fell the afflicted bush of unhappy Daphne! Shipwright, spare me! cut no timbers from my pine-tree, to make some lugger that may feel the billows of Aphrodite, Lady of the Sea! Yes, woodcutter, grant me this last grace: strike me with your axe instead of my clusters, and drive our unmarried Athena's chaste bronze through my breast, that I may die before I wed, and go to Hades a virgin, still a stranger to Eros, like Pitys and like Daphne!
§ 2.109 With these words, she contrived a makeshift kirtle with the leaves, and modestly covered the circle of her breast with this green girdle, pressing thigh upon thigh. The other seeing her so downcast, answered thus: I feel the fear inborn in a maiden, because I was born of a laurel, and I am pursued like Daphne. But where shall I flee? Shall I hide under a rock? No, thunderbolts have burnt to ashes the mountains hurled at Olympos; and I tremble at your lustful Pan, who will persecute me like Pitys, like Syrinx – I shall be chased myself until I become another Echo, to scour the hills and second another's speech. I will haunt these clusters no longer; I will leave my tree and live in the mountains which are still half to be seen, where Artemis also hunts, and she loves a maiden. – Yet Cronion won the bed of Callisto by taking the form of Artemis! I will plunge into the briny deep – what is marriage to me? – Yet in the sea, Earthshaker chased Asterie in the madness of his passion. O that I had wings to fly! I will traverse the heights, and take the road which the winds of the air do travel! But perhaps racing wings are also useless: Typhoeus reaches the clouds with highclambering hands!
§ 2.130 But if he will force me by violence, I will change my shape, I will mingle with the birds; flitting as Philomela, I will be the swallow dear to Zephyros in spring-time, harbinger of roses and flowery dew, prattling bird that sings a sweet song under the tiles, dashing about her nest with dancing wings. And, you, Procne, after your bitter sufferings, – you may weep for your son with mournful notes, and I will groan for my bridal. – Lord Zeus! make me no swallow, or angry Tereus on the wing may chase me, like Typhoeus! Air, mountain, sea, I may tread none of them: I will hide me deep in the earth. No! the water-snakes of the monster's viperfish feet crawl into the caverns underground, spitting poison! May I be a fountain of water in the country, like Comaitho, mingling her newly flowing water with her father Cydnos – no, not to suit the story, because I shall then have to join my virgin water with the out-gushings of a lovesick maid. But where shall I flee? Shall I mingle with Typhon? Then shall I bear a son like the father – an alien, multiform! Let me be another tree, and pass from tree to tree keeping the name of a virtuous maid; may I never, instead of laurel, be called that unhallowed plant which gave its name to Myrrha. Yes, I beseech thee! let me be one of the Heliades beside the stream of mourning Eridanos: often will I drop amber from my eyelids; I will spread my leaves to entwine with the dirge-loving clusters of my neighbouring poplar, bewailing my maidenhood with abundant tears – for Phaethon will not be my lament. Forgive me, my laurel; I shrink from being another tree after the tree of my former wood. I also will be a stone, like Niobe, that wayfarers may pity me too, a groaning stone. – But why be the shape of one with that ill-omened tongue? Be gracious, Leto! Perish the god-defiant name of a nymph unhappy to be a mother!
§ 2.163 While she spoke, Phaethon had left he rounded sky, and turned his car towards setting: silent Night leapt up from earth into the air like a high-stretching cone, and wrapped heaven about in a starry robe spangling the welkin. The immortals moved about the cloudless Nile, but Zeus Cronides on the brows of Tauros awaited the light of toil-awakening Dawn.
§ 2.170 It was night. Sentinels stood in line around Olympos and the seven zones, and as it were from the summit of towers came their nightly alarms; the calls of the stars in many tongues were carried all abroad, and the moon's turning-mark received the creaking echo from Saturn's starting-point. Now the Seasons, guardians of the upper air, handmaids of Phaethon, had fortified the sky with a long string of covering clouds like a coronal. The stars had closed the Atlantean bar of the inviolable gates, lest some stealthy troop should enter the heavens while the Blessed ones were away: instead of the noise of pipes and the familiar flute, the breezes whistled a tune with their wings through the night. Old Oxherd was on guard with unsleeping eyes, in company with the heavenly Serpent of the Arcadian Bear, looking out from on high for some nightly assault of Typhon: the Morning Star watched the east, the Evening Star the west, and Cepheus, leaving the southern gates to the Archer, himself patrolled the rainy gates of the north.
§ 2.188 Watchfires were all around: for the blazing flames of the stars, and the nightly lamp of unresting Selene, sparkled like torches. Often the shooting stars, leaping through the heights of Olympos with windswept whirl from the ether, scored the air with flame on Cronion's right hand; often the lightning danced, twisting about like a tumbler, and tearing the clouds as it shot through, the uncertain brilliance which runs to and fro, now hidden, now shining, in alternating swing; and the comet twined in clusters the long strands of his woven flame, and made a ragged light with his hairy fire. Stray meteors were also shining, like long rafters stretching across the sky, shooting their long fires as allies of Zeus; and the rain's comrade, the bow of Iris, wove her many colours into a rounded track, and shone bent under the light-shafts of Phaethon opposite, mingling pale with dark, and light with rosy.
§ 2.205 Zeus was alone, when Victory came to comfort him, scoring the high paths of the air with her shoe. She had the form of Leto; and while she armed her father, she made him a speech full of reproaches, with guileful lips: Lord Zeus! stand up as champion of your own children! Let me never see Athena mingled with Typhon, she who knows not the way of a man with a maid! Make not a mother of the unmothered! Fight, brandish your lightning, the fiery spear of Olympos! Gather once more your clouds, lord of the rain! For the foundations of the steadfast universe are already shaking under Typhon's hands: the four blended elements are melted! Deo has renounced her harvests. Hebe has left her cup, Ares has thrown down his spear, Hermes has dropped his staff, Apollo has cast away his harp, and taken a swan's form, and flown off on the wing, leaving his winged arrows behind! Aphrodite, the goddess who brings wedlock to pass, has gone a-wandering, and the universe is without seed. The bonds indissoluble of harmony are dissolved: for bold Eros has flown in panic, leaving behind his generative arrows, he the adorner of brides, he the all-mastering, the unmastered! And your fiery Hephaistos has left his favourite Lemnos, and dragging unruly knees, look how slow he keeps his unsteady course! See a great miracle – I pity your Hera, though she hates me sure enough! What – is your begetter to come back into the assembly of the stars? May that never be, I pray! Even if I am called a Titaness, I wish to see no Titans lords of Olympos, but you and your children. Take your lordly thunderbolt and champion chaste Artemis. What – do I keep my maiden for a bridegroom who offers no gifts but only violence? What – is the dispenser of childbirth to see childbirth of her own? Will she stretch out her hands to me, and then what gracious Eileithyia shall I call for the Archeress, when Eileithyia herself is in childbed?
§ 2.237 So she spoke: and Sleep beating his shady wing sent all breathing nature to rest; but Cronion alone remained sleepless. Typhoeus stretched out his sluggish back and lay heavy upon his bed, covering his Mother Earth; she opened wide her bosom, and lurking lairs were hollowed out in a grinning chasm for the snaky heads which sank into the ground.
§ 2.244 The sun appeared, and many-armed Typhoeus roared for the fray with all the tongues of all his throats, challenging mighty Zeus. That sonorous voice reached where the root-fixt bed of refluent Oceanos surrounds the circle of the world and its four divided parts, girdling the whole earth coronet-wise with encircling band; as the monster spoke, that which answered the army of his voices, was not one concordant echo, but a babel of screaming sounds: when the monster arrayed him with all his manifold shapes, out rang the yowling of wolves, the roaring of lions, the grunting of boars, the lowing of cattle, the hissing of serpents, the bold yap of leopards, the jaws of rearing bears, the fury of dogs. Then with his midmost man-shaped head the Giant yelled out threats against Zeus:
§ 2.258 Smash the house of Zeus, O my hands! Shake the foundation of the universe, and the blessed ones with it! Break the bar of Olympos, self-turning, divine! Drag down to earth the heavenly pillar, let Atlas be shaken and flee away, let him throw down the starry vault of Olympos and fear no more its circling course – for I will not permit a son of Earth to be bowed down with chafed shoulders, while he under-props the revolving compulsion of the sky! No, let him leave his endless burden to the other gods, and battle against the Blessed Ones! Let him break off rocks, and volley with those hard shots the starry vault which he once carried! Let the timid Seasons, the Sun's handmaids, flee the heavens under the shower of mountains! Mix earth with sky, water with fire, sea with Olympos, in a litter of confusion!
§ 2.273 I will compel the four winds also to labour as my slaves; I lash the North Wind, I buffet the South, I flog the East; I will thrash the West, with one hand I will mix night with day; Oceanos my brother shall bring his water to Olympos aloft with many-fountained throat, and rising above the five parallel circles he shall inundate the stars; then let the thirsty Bear go wandering in the water with the Waggon's pole submerged!
§ 2.281 Bellow, my bulls, shake the circle of the equator in the sky, break with your notched horns the horns of the fiery Bull, your own likeness! Let Selene's cattle change their watery road, fearing the heavybooming bellow of my heads! Let Typhaon's bear open wide his grim gaping jaws, and worry the Bear of Olympos! Let my lion face the heavenly Lion, and drive him reluctant from the path of the Zodiac! (Little do I care for Zeus,) with only a few lightning to arm him! Ah, but my swords are the maddened waves of the sea, the tors of the land, the island glens; my shields are the hills, the cliffs are my breastplates unbreakable, my halberds are the rocks, and the rivers which will quench the contemptible thunderbolt. I will keep the chains of Iapetos for Poseidon; and soaring round Caucasus, another and better eagle shall tear the bleeding liver, growing for ever anew, of Hephaistos the fiery: since fire was that for which Prometheus has been suffering the ravages of his self-growing liver. I will take a shape the counterpart of the sons of Iphimedeia, and I will shut up the intriguing son of Maia in a brazen jar, 'Hermes freed Ares from prison, and he was put in prison himself!' Let Artemis break the untouched seal of her maidenhood, and become the enforced consort of Orion; Leto shall spread her old bedding for Tityos, dragged to wedlock by force. I will strip murderous Ares of his ragged bucklers, I will bind the lord of battle, and carry him off, and make him Killer the Gentle; I will carry off Pallas and join her to Ephialtes, married at last; that I may see Ares a slave, and Athena a mother.
§ 2.314 Cronion also shall lift the spinning heavens of Atlas, and bear the load on weary shoulders – there shall he stand, and hear the song at my wedding, and hide his jealousy when I shall be Hera's bridegroom. Torches shall not lack at my wedding. Bright lightning shall come of itself to be selfmade torch of the bride-chamber; Phaethon himself instead of pine-brands, kindled at the light of his own flames, shall put his radiance at the service of Typhoeus the Bridegroom; the stars shall sprinkle their bridal sparks over Olympos as lamps to my loves, the stars, lights of evening! My servant Selene, Endymion's bed-fellow, along with Aphrodite the friend of marriage, shall lay my bed; and if I want a bath, I will bathe in the waters of starry Eridanos. Come now, ye circling Seasons! You prepared the bed of Zeus, build now the bower of love for Typhoeus; you also, Leto, Athenaia, Paphian, Charis, Artemis, Hebe, bring up form Oceanos his kindred water for Typhon the Bridegroom! And at the banquet of my table, with bridal quill Apollo my menial shall celebrate Typhoeus instead of Zeus.
§ 2.334 I long for no stranger's demesne; for Uranos is my brother, a son of Earth like myself; the star-dappled heaven which I shall rule, the heaven which I shall live in, comes to me through my mother. And cannibal Cronos I will drag up once more to the light, another brother, to help me in my task, out of the underground abyss; I will break those constraining chains, and bring back the Titans to heaven, and settle under the same roof in the sky the Cyclopes, sons of Earth. I will make more weapons of fire; for I need many thunderbolts, because I have two hundred hands to fight with, not only a pair like Cronides. I will forge a newer and better brand of lightning, with more fire and flashes. I will build another heaven up aloft, he eighth, broader and higher than the rest, and furnish it with brighter stars; for the vault which we see close beside us is not enough to cover the whole of Typhon. And after those girl children and the male progeny of prolific Zeus, I will beget another multiparous generation of new Blessed Ones with multitudinous necks. I will not leave the company of the stars useless and unwedded, but I will join male to female, that the winged Virgin may sleep with the Oxherd and breed me slave-children.
§ 2.356 So he shouted; Cronides heard, and laughed aloud. Then the din of battle resounded on both sides. Strife was Typhon's escort in the mellay, Victory led Zeus into battle. No herds of cattle were the cause of that struggle, no flocks of sheep, this was no quarrel for a beautiful woman, no fray for a petty town: heaven itself was the stake in the fight, the sceptre and throne of Zeus lay on the knees of Victory as the prize of combat.
§ 2.364 Zeus flogging the clouds beat a thundering roar in the sky and trumpeted Enyo's call, then fitted clouds upon his chest in a bunch as protection against the Giant's missiles. Nor was Typhoeus silent: his bull-heads were self-sounding trumpets for him, sending forth a bellow which made Olympos rattle again; his serpents intermingled whistling for Ares' pipes. He fortified the ranks of his high-clambering limbs, shielding mighty rock with rock until the cliffs made an unbroken wall of battlements, as he set crag by crag uprooted in a long line. It looked like an army preparing for battle; for side by side bluff pressed hard on bluff, tor upon tor, ledge upon ledge, and high in the clouds one tortuous ridge pushed another; rugged hills were Typhon's helmets, and his heads were hidden in their beetling steeps. In that battle, the Giant had indeed one body, but many necks, but legions of arms innumerable, lions' jaws with well-sharpened fangs, hairbrush of vipers mounting over the stars. Trees were doubled up by Typhaon's hands and thrown against Cronides, and other fine leafy growths of earth, but all these Zeus unwilling burnt to dust with one spark of thunderbolt cast in heavy throw. Many an elm was hurled against Zeus with first coeval, and enormous plane-trees and volleys of white poplar; many a pit was broken in earth's flank.
§ 2.391 The whole circuit of the universe with its four sides was buffeted. The four winds, allied with Cronion, raised in the air columns of sombre dust; they swelled the arching waves, they flogged the sea until Sicily quaked; the Pelorid shores resounded and the ridges of Aitna, the Lilybaian rocks bellowed prophetic of things to come, the Pachynian promontory crashed under the western wave. Near the Bear, the nymph of Athos wailed about her Thracian glen, the forest of Macedon roared on the Pierian ridge; the foundations of the east were shaken, there was crashing in the fragrant valleys of Assyrian Libanos.
§ 2.403 Aye, and from Typhaon's hands were showered volleys against the unwearied thunderbolts of Zeus. Some shots went past Selene's car, and scored through the invisible footprints of her moving bulls; others whirling through the air with sharp whiz, the winds blew away by counterblasts. Many a stray shot from the invulnerable thunderbolts of Zeus fell into the welcoming hand of Poseidon, unsparing of his earthpiercing trident's point; old Nereus brought the brine-soaked bolts to the ford of the Cronian Sea, and dedicated them as an offering to Zeus.
§ 2.414 Now Zeus armed the two grim sons of Enyalios, his own grandsons, Rout and Terror his servant, the inseparable guardsmen of the sky: Rout he set up with lightning, Terror he made strong with the thunderbolt, terrifying Typhon. Victory lifted her shield and held it before Zeus: Enyo countered with a shout, and Ares made a din. Zeus breasting the tempests with his aegis-breastplate swooped down from the air on high, seated in Time's chariot with four winged steeds, for the horses that drew Cronion were the team of the winds. Now he battled with lightnings, now with Levin; now he attacked with thunders, now poured out petrified masses of frozen hail in volleying showers. Waterspouts burst thick upon the Giant's heads with sharp blows, and hands were cut off from the monster by the frozen volleys of the air as by a knife. One hand rolled in the dust, struck off by the icy cut of the hail; it did not drop the crag which it held, but fought on even while it fell, and shot rolling over the ground in self-propelled leaps, a hand gone mad! as if it still wished to strike the vault of Olympos.
§ 2.436 Then the sovereign of the heavens brandished aloft his fiery bolt, and passing from the left wing of the battle to the right, fought manifest on high. The many-armed monster hastened to the watery torrents; he intertwined his row of fingers into a living mat, and hollowing his capacious palms, he lifted from the midst of the wintry rivers their water as it came pouring down from the mountains, and threw these detached parcels of he streams against the lightning. But the ethereal flame blazed with livelier sparks through the water of the torrents which struck it; the thirsty water boiled and steamed, and its liquid essence dried up in the red hot mass. Yes – to quench the ethereal fire was the bold Giant's plan, poor fool! he knew not that the fire-flaming thunderbolts and lightnings are the offspring of the clouds from whence the rain-showers come!
§ 2.451 Again, he cut straight off sections of the torrent-beds, and designed to crush the breast of Zeus which no iron can wound; the mass of rock came hurtling at Zeus, but Zeus blew a light puff from the edge of his lips, and that gentle breath turned the whirling rock aside with all its towering crags. The monster with his hand broke off a rounded promontory from an island, and rising for the attack circled it round his head again and again, and cast it at the invincible face of Zeus; then Zeus moved his head aside, and dodged the jagged rock which came at him; but Typhon hit the lightning as it passed on its hot zigzag path, and at once the rock was white-patched at the tip and blackened with smoke – there was no mistake about it. A third rock he cast; but Cronion caught it in full career with the flat of his infinite open hand, and by a playful turn of the wrist sent it back like a bouncing ball, to Typhon. The crag returned with many an airy twist along its homeward path, and of itself shot the shooter. A fourth shot he sent, higher than before: the rock touched the tassel-tips of the aegis-cape, and split asunder. Another he let fly: storm-swift the rock flew, but a thunderbolt struck it, and half-consumed, it blazed. The crags could not pierce the raincloud; but the stricken hills were broken to pieces by the rainclouds.
§ 2.475 Thus impartial Enyo held equal balance between the two sides, between Zeus and Typhon, while the thunderbolts with booming shots held revel like dancers of the sky. Cronides fought fully armed: in the fray, the thunder was his shield, the cloud his breastplate, he cast the lightning for a spear; Zeus let fly his thunderbolts from the air, his arrows barbed with fire. For already from the underground abyss a dry vapour diffused around rose from the earth on high, and compressed within the cloud was stifled in the fiery gullet, heating the pregnant cloud. For the lurking flame crushed within rushed about struggling to find a passage through; over the smoke the fire-breeding clouds rumble in their agony seeking the middle path; the fires dares not go upwards: for the lightning leaping up is kept back by the moist air bathed in rainy drops, which condenses the seething cloud above, but the lower part is parched and gapes and the fire runs through with a bound. As the female stone is struck by the male stone, one stone on another brings flame to birth, while crushed and beaten it produces from itself a shower of sparks: so the heavenly fire is kindled in clouds and murk crushed and beaten, but from earthy smoke, which is naturally thin, the winds are brought forth. There is another floating vapour, drawn from the waters, which the sun shining full on them with fiery rays milks out and draws up dewy through the boiling track of air. This thickens and produces the cloudy veil; then shaking the thick mass by means of the thinner vapour, it dissolves the fine cloud again into a fall of rain, and returns to its natural condition of water. Such is the character of the fiery clouds, with their twin birth of lightnings and thunders together.
§ 2.508 Zeus the father fought on: raised and hurled his familiar fire against his adversary, piercing his lions, and sending a fiery whirlwind from heaven to strike the battalion of his innumerable necks with their babel of tongues. Zeus cast his bolt, one blaze burnt the monster's endless hands, one blaze consumed his numberless shoulders and the speckled tribes of his serpents; heaven's blades cut off those countless heads; a writhing comet met him front to front discharging a thick bush of sparks, and consumed the monster's hair. Typhon's heads were ablaze, the hair caught fire; with heaven's sparks silence sealed the hissing tresses, the serpents shrivelled up, and in their throats the poison-spitting drops were dried. The Giant fought on: his eyes were burnt to ashes in the murky smoke, his cheeks were whitened with hoar-frost, his faces beaten with showers of snow. He suffered the fourfold compulsion of the four winds. For if he turned flickering eyes to the sunrise, he received the fiery battle of neighbouring Euros. If he gazed towards the stormy clime of the Arcadian Bear, he was beaten by the chilly frost of wintry whirlwinds. If he shunned the cold blast of snow-beaten Boreas, he was shaken by the volleys of wet and hot together. If he looked to the sunset, opposite to the dawn of the grim east, he shivered before Enyo and her western tempests when he heard the noise of Zephyros cracking his spring-time lash; and Notos, that hot wind, round about the southern foot of Capricorn flogged the aerial vaults, leading against Typhon a glowing blaze with steamy heat. If again Rainy Zeus poured down a watery torrent, Typhoeus bathed all his body in the trouble-soothing showers, and refreshed his benumbed limbs after the stifling thunderbolts.
§ 2.540 Now as the son was scourged with frozen volleys of jagged hailstones, his mother the dry Earth was beaten too; and seeing the stone bullets and icy points embedded in the Giant's flesh, the witness of his fate, she prayed to Titan Helios with submissive voice: she begged of him one red hot ray, that with its heating fire she might melt the petrified water of Zeus, by pouring his kindred radiance over frozen Typhon. She herself melted along with his bruised body; and when she saw his legion of highclambering hands burnt all round, she besought one of the tempestuous winter's blasts to come for one morning, that he might quench Typhon's overpowering thirst by his cool breezes.
§ 2.553 Then Cronion inclined the equally balanced beam of the fight. But Earth his Mother had thrown off her veil of forests with her hand, and just then was grieving to behold Typhaon's smoking heads. While his faces were shrivelling, the Giant's knees gave way beneath him; the trumpet of Zeus brayed, foretelling victory with a roll of thunder; down fell Typhoeus's high-uplifted frame, drunk with the fiery bolt from heaven, stricken with a war-wound of something more than steel, and lay with his back upon Earth his mother, stretching his snaky limbs in the dust and belching flame. Cronides laughed aloud, and taunted him like this in a flood of words from his mocking throat:
§ 2.565 A fine ally has old Cronos found in you, Typhoeus! Earth could scarcely bring forth that great son for Iapetos! A jolly champion of Titans! The thunderbolts of Zeus soon lost their power against you, as I see! How long are you going to wait before taking up your quarters in the inaccessible heavens, you sceptred impostor? The throne of Olympos awaits you: accept the robes and sceptre of Zeus, God-defying Typhoeus! Bring back Astraios to heaven; if you wish, let Eurynome and Ophion return to the sky, and Cronos in the train of that pair! When you enter the dappleback vault of highranging stars, let crafty Prometheus leave his chains, and come with you; the bold bird who makes hearty meals off that rejuvenescent liver shall show him the way to heaven. What did you want to gain by your riot, but to see Zeus and Earthshaker footmen behind your throne? Well, here you have Zeus helpless, no longer sceptre-bearer of Olympos, Zeus stript of his thunders and his clouds, holding up no longer the lightning's fire divine or the familiar thunderbolt, but a torch for Typhaon's bower, groom of the chamber of Hera the bride of your spear, whom he eyes with wrath, jealous of your bed: here you have Earthshaker with him, torn from the sea for a new place instead of the deep as waiter at your table, no trident in his hand but a cup for you if you are thirsty! Here you have Ares for a menial, Apollo is your lackey! Send round Maia's son, King's Messenger, to announce to the Titans your triumph and your glory in the skies. But leave your smith Hephaistos to his regular work in Lemnos, and he can make a necklace to adorn your newly wedded bride, a real work of art, in dazzling colours, or a fine pair of brilliant shoes for your wife's feet to delight her, or he can build another Olympian throne of shining gold, that your golden-throned Hera may laugh because she has a better throne than yours! And when you have the underground Cyclopes domiciled in Olympos, make anew spark for an improved thunderbolt. As for Eros, who bewitched your mind by delusive hopes of victory, chain him with golden Aphrodite in chains of gold, and clamp with chains of bronze Ares the governor of iron!
§ 2.605 The lightnings try to escape, and will not abide Enyo! How as it you could not escape a harmless little flash of lightning? How was it with all those innumerable ears you were afraid to hear a little rainy thud of thunder? Who made you so big a coward? Where are your weapons? Where are your puppyheads? Where are those gaping lions, where is the heavy bellowing of your throats like rumbling earthquake? Where is the far-flung poison of your snaky mane? Do not you hiss any more with that coronet of serpentine bristles? Where are the bellowings of your bull-mouths? Where are your hands and their volleys of precipitous crags? Do you flog no longer the mazy circles of the stars? Do the jutting tusk of your boars no longer whiten their chins, wet with a frill of foamy drippings? Come now, where are the bristling grinning jaws of the mad bear?
§ 2.620 Son of Earth, give place to the sons of heaven! For I with one hand have vanquished your hands, two hundred strong. Let three-headland Sicily receive Typhon whole and entire, let her crush him all about under her steep and lofty hills, with the hair of his hundred heads miserably bedabbled in dust. Nevertheless, if you did have an over-violent mind, if you did assault Olympos itself in your impracticable ambitions, I will build you a cenotaph, presumptuous wretch, and I will engrave on your empty tomb, this last message: 'This is the barrow of Typhoeus son of Earth, who once lashed the sky with stones, and the fire of heaven burnt him up.'
§ 2.631 Thus he mocked the half-living corpse of the son of Earth. Then Cilician Tauros brayed a victorious noise on his stony trumpet for Zeus Almighty, while Cydnos danced zigzag on his watery feet, crying Euoi! in rolling roar for the victory of Zeus, Cydnos visible in the midst, as he poured the flood upon Tarsos which had been there ever since he had been there himself. But Earth tore her rocky tunic and lay there grieving; instead of the shears of mourning, she let the winds beat her breast and shear off a coppice for a curl; so she cut the tresses from her forest-covered head as in the month of leaf-shedding, she tore gullies in her cheeks; Earth wailed, as her river-tears rolled echoing through the swollen torrents of the hills. The gales eddying from Typhaon's limbs lash the waves, hurrying to engulf the ships and riding down the sheltered calm. Not only the surges they invade; but often over the land sweeps a storm of dust, and overwhelms the crops growing firm and upright upon the fields.
§ 2.650 Then Nature, who governs the universe and recreates its substance, closed up the gaping rents in earth's broken surface, and sealed once more with the bond of indivisible joinery those island cliffs which had been rent from their beds. No longer was there turmoil among the stars. For Helios replaced the maned Lion, who had moved out of the path of the Zodiac, beside the Maiden who holds the corn-ear; Selene took the crab, now crawling over the forehead of the heavenly Lion, and drew him back opposite cold Capricorn, and fixt him there.
§ 2.660 But Zeus Cronides did not forget Cadmos the mastersinger. He dispersed the cloud of darkness which overshadowed him, and calling him, spoke in this fashion: Cadmos, you have crowned the gates of Olympos with your pipes! Then I will myself celebrate your bridal with heaven's own Harp. I will make you goodson to Ares and Cythereia; gods shall be guests at your wedding-feast on the earth! I will visit your house: what more could you want, than to see the King of the Blessed touching your table? And if you wish to cross life's ferry on a calm sea, escaping the uncertain currents of Chance, be careful always not to offend Ares Dircaian, Ares angry when deprived of his brood. At dead of night fix your gaze on the heavenly Serpent, and do sacrifice on the altar holding in your hand a piece of fragrant serpentine; and calling upon the Olympian Serpent-holder, burn in the fire a horn of the Illyrian deer with many tines: that so you may escape all the bitter things which the wreathed spindle of apportioned Necessity has spun for your fate, — if the threads of the Portioners every obey!
§ 2.679 Let pass the memory of your angry father Agenor, fear not for your wandering brothers; for they all live, though far apart. Cepheus journeyed to the regions of the south, and he has found favour with the Cephenes of Ethiopia; Thasos went to Thasos, and Cilix is king over the Cilicians round about the snowy mount of high-peaked Tauros; Pineus came with all speed to the Thracian land. As for him, I will make him proud with his deep mines of riches, and lead him as goodson to Oreithyia and Thracian Boreas, as prophetic bridegroom of garlanded Cleopatra. For you, the Portioner's thread weighs equal with your brothers; be king of the Cadmeians, and leave your name to your people. Give up the back-wending circuits of your wandering way, and relinquish the bull's restless track; for your sister has been wedded by the law of love to Asterion of Dicte, king of Corybantian Ida.
§ 2.699 With these words, Zeus Cronides dismissed Agenor's son, and swiftly turned his golden chariot toward the round of the ethereal stars, while Victory by his side drove her father's team with the heavenly whip. So the god came once more to the sky; and to receive him the stately Seasons threw open the heavenly gates, and crowned the heavens. With Zeus victorious, the other gods came home to Olympos, in their own form come again, for they put off the winged shapes which they had taken on. Athena came into heaven unarmed, in dainty robes with Ares turned Comus, and Victory for Song; and Themis displayed to dumbfounded Earth, mother of the giants, the spoils of the giant destroyed, an awful warning for the future, and hung them up high in the vestibule of Olympos.
§ 3.1 BOOK 3
In the third, look for the much-wandering ship of Cadmos, the palace of Electra and the hospitality of her table.
The struggle was finished by the end of winter. Orion rose, displaying with his cloudless baldric the glittering surface of his sword. No longer were the frozen footsteps of the setting Bull washed under the circling mere. No longer in the region of the thirsty Bear, mother of rains, was the petrified water traversed by unwetted feet. No longer the Massagetan scored watery furrows on the frozen Istros, whipping up his migratory house, and traveling across the river with his track of wooden wheels. For already the teeming Season, fore-courier of Zephyros, had inebriated the dewy breezes from the bursting flowercups; the full-voiced herald, spring's welcome, fellow-guest, the chattering twittering swallow, had just shown herself to rob mankind of their morning sleep; the flower, clear of its fragrant sheath, laughed, bathed in the life-giving dew of springtime.
§ 3.16 Early in the morning, when Dawn had cleft the gloom, Cadmos came down from the horned peaks of lofty Tauros along the saffron glens of Cilicia. Sailing was now in season, Cadmos was in haste; they hauled up the ship's bridling-hawsers off the land. The mast lifting its head on high struck the upper air standing firmly. A light breeze gently rippling the sea with the breath of the morning hummed All aboard! Soon it curved the fickle waves with its gusts, and stopt the watery dance of the dolphin, that tumbler of the quiet calm. The intertwined ropes whistled with a shrill hiss, the forestays hummed in the freshening wind, the sail grew big-bellied, enforced by the forthright gale. The restless flood was cleft, then fell back to its place; the water swelled and foamed, the ship sped over the deep, while the keel struck the boisterous waves with a resounding splash, and the end of the steering-oar scored the white-crested billows where the ship's wake divided the curving back of the sea.
§ 3.35 On the tenth circling Dawn after the peaceful turning-point of spring, Cadmos has been carried by winds from Zeus over a waveless sea; but as he cleft the Trojan channel of water-ranging Helle, a violent wind drove him over a roaring passage to Samos, over against battle-stirring Scamandros, not far from Sithonia, where Harmonia still a virgin awaited him safely. There the prophetic breezes escorted his vessel to the Thracian coast, by divine Rheia's ordinance. The sailors rejoiced to see the sleepless flame of the Samian torch, and furled their sails as they came near the land; then rowing the ship towards the waveless anchorage they scored the smooth water with the tips of their oars and ran her up under shelter of the harbour. A hole drilled through a rocky claw received the hawsers of the ships, and held them immovable, and the curving teeth of the ship's bridles were wedged tight into the wet sand deep under the water, by the time that the sun went down. On shore, after the evening meal, the men spread their pallets on the sand without bedding; the poor fellows' eyes were heavy, and wandering sleep came on them with silent step.
§ 3.55 But when along the wing of red fiery Euros, Dawn scraping the peaks of rugged Teucrian Ida from below spilled away the morning twilight, and showed herself to survey the harbour, illuminating the black swell of the opposite sea, then Cypris spread out a back of silent calm where no ship could sail, for she meant to unite Harmonia to her mate. Already the bird of morning was cutting the air with loud cries; already the helmeted bands of desert-haunting Corybants were beating on their shields in the Cnossian dance, and leaping with rhythmic steps, and the oxhides thudded under the blows of the iron as they whirled them about in rivalry, while the double pipe made music, and quickened the dancers with its rollicking tune in time to the bounding steps. Aye, and the trees whispered, the rocks boomed, the forests held jubilee with their intelligent movings and shakings, and the Dryads did sing. Packs of bears joined the dance, skipping and wheeling face to face; lions with a roar from emulous throats mimicked the triumphant cry of the priests of the Cabeiroi, sane in their madness; the revelling pipes rang out a tune in honour of Hecate, divine friend of dogs, those single pipes, which the horn-polisher's art invented in Cronos's days.
§ 3.77 The noisy Corybants with their ringing din awoke Cadmos early in the morning; the Sidonian seamen also with one accord, hearing the never-silent oxhide at dawn, rose from their rattling pebbly pallets and left the brine-beaten back of the shore, their bed. Cadmos left the ship to his companions, and set out on foot for a quick walk to find the city. As he was going towards Harmonia's house, he was met by Peitho, Lady of the bride-chamber. She had the form of a mortal woman, and like a household drudge, she carried a weight pressed against her bosom by her arm, a rounded silver jug which she had filled with drink from the spring: a presage of things to come, since they drench the bridegroom by time-honoured custom with life-giving water in the bath before the marriage. He was now close by the city, where in hollow pits bundles on bundles of soiled clothing are trodden by the women's bounding feet, trodden in emulation. Peitho covered Cadmos with a dark mist from heels to head, and led him through the unseeing city in search of the king's hospitable hall, guiding his way by the Paphian's command. There some bird, perched under the delicate shadow of a gray olive-tree, – it was a crow, she opened her loud beak inspired, and reproached the young man for a laggard, that the bridegroom walked to his bride Harmonia with dawdling foot. She flapt her wings and rallied him soundly:
§ 3.103 So Cadmos is a baby, or only a novice in love! Eros is a quick one, and knows nothing of slow bridegrooms! Forgive me, Peitho – your Cadmos dallies, Aphrodite is in haste! Hot Eros calls you, bridegroom – you plod along like a laggard, and why? You are a nice neighbour for charming Adonis! You are a nice fellow-countryman for the girls of Byblos! No, I am wrong: you never saw the river of Adonis; you never set eyes on the soil of Byblos, where the Graces have their home, where Assyrian Cythereia dances, and an Athena who is not coy! Peitho is your guide, nor Artemis, Peitho the friend of marriage, the nurse of the baby Loves. Cease your toiling and moiling, enjoy Harmonia and leave Europa to her bull! Make haste, and Electra will welcome you; from her hands sure enough you will be laden with a cargo of wedded love, if you leave the business part of the delights to Aphrodite. She is the Cyprian's daughter, guarded for your bride-chamber, another Cypris for you to receive. You will thank the crow, and you will call me the bird of marriage, the prophet of the Loves! No, I am wrong, Cypris inspired me; the Paphian made me foretell your nuptials, although I am Athena's bird!
§ 3.123 With these words, she sealed up her talkative beak, a silent witness now. Cadmos walked along the winding highroad; and when the king's all-hospitable court came into view, far-seen upon its lofty pillars, Peitho pointed a finger to indicate the corresponding words in her mind, and by this voiceless herald showed the house of shining artistry: then the divinity in another shape rose into the sky, shooting through it with winged shoe.
§ 3.131 Then Cadmos surveyed the house with roving gaze: the masterly work of Hephaistos, which the industrious god once built for Electra as a bride, and embellished it with many ornaments in the fine Myrinaian art of Lemnos. The whole palace was new. A brazen threshold well-wrought was before it. Double doors with lofty pillars opened into a vestibule richly carven, and a dome spanned the roof with a rounded head seen in the middle. The walls were faced with tessellated stones set in white cement from threshold to inner end. Before the house near the courtyard was an enclosure, widespread, four acres of trees heavy with fresh fruit. Male palm stretched his leaves over female palm, pledging his love. Pear growing by pear, all of one age with glorious fruit, whispered in the morning breeze – and with its dangling clusters beat on the pollard growth of a luscious olive hard by. In the breezes of spring, the myrtle waves his leaves by the reluctant laurel, while the fragrant wind of morning fanned the foliage of the leafy cypress. On the fig-tree, mother of sweets, and the juicy pomegranate, red fruit grew rich over purple fruit beside it, and apple flourished near apple. On the learned leaves of Apollo's mournful iris was embroidered with many a plant-grown word; and when Zephyros breathed through the flowery garden, Apollo turned a quick eye upon his young darling, his yearning never satisfied; if he saw the plant beaten by the breezes, he remembered the quoit, and trembled for fear the wind, so jealous once about the boy, might hate him even in a leaf: if it is true that Apollo once wept with those eyes that never wept, to see that boy writhing in the dust, and the pattern there on the flower traced its own alas! on the iris, and so figures the tears of Phoibos.
§ 3.164 Such was the shady garden. Hard by, a brook divided in two runnels; from this the people drew their drinking, from that the gardener cut up the water into many curving channels and carried it from plant to plant: one stream chuckled at the root of a laurel, as if Phoibos were singing a delicate tune to his Daphne.
§ 3.169 Within, well-wrought boys of gold stood on many pillars of stone, holding out torches before the banqueters to give them light for their dessert in the evening. Before the gates rows of dogs stood on this side and that, not real yet intelligent, all modelled alike, silent works of art, snarling with gaping throats; then if a man came by whom they knew, golden dog by silver dog would bark with swelling throat and fawn upon him. So as Cadmos passed, Echo sent forth a sound like a welcome for a guest, and wagged the friendly shape of an artificial tail.
§ 3.180 While Cadmos has been moving his face about and turning his eyes to survey the royal garden, and saw the sculptures, and all the beauty of the hall with its paintings and bright sparkling precious stones, Emation had left the market-place and the disputes of his people, and sat splendid upon the back of a courser with arching neck. He was lord of Samothrace, the seat of Ares, having inherited the royal house of Electra his mother. At that time he was sole king, holding the reins of sovereignty which belonged to his brother Dardanos, who had left his native soil, and migrated to the soil of the continent opposite. There he had scored the dust of Ida with a plow-furrow, and marked the limits of Dardania, the fortified city which bore his name. So he drank the water of Sevenstreams and the flood of Rhesos, leaving the inheritance and the sceptre of the Cabeiroi to his brother.
§ 3.195 This Dardanos, Emathion's brother, was one whom the bed of Zeus had begotten, whom Justice nursed and cared for at the time when the Seasons ran to the mansion of Queen Electra, bearing the sceptre of Zeus, and the robe of Time, and the staff of Olympos, to prophesy the indissoluble dominion of the Ausonian race. The Seasons brought up the baby; and by an irrevocable oracle of Zeus, the lad just sprouting the flower of recrescent youth left Electra's house, when for the third time a deluge of rain had flooded the world's foundations with towering billows.
§ 3.205 Ogygos made proof of the first roaring deluge, as he cut the air through the highclimbing waters, when all the earth was hidden under the flood, when the tops of the Thessalian rocks were covered, when the summit of the Pythian rock near the clouds on high was bathed in the snow-cooled flood. There was a second deluge, when tempestuous waters covered the circuit of the round earth in a furious flood, when all mortal men perished, and Deucalion alone with his mate Pyrrha in a hollow ark cutting the swirling flood of infinite deluge went on his eddying voyage through the air turned water.
§ 3.215 When the third time rain from Zeus flooded the solid earth and covered the hills, and even the unwetted slopes of Sithonia with Mount Athos itself, then Dardanos, cutting through the stream of the uplifted flood, landed on the ancient mountain of Ida his neighbour.
§ 3.220 It was his brother Emathion, ruler of the snowy Sithonian land, who left the noisy market-place, and stood amazed at the hero's looks; for the youthful grace inborn in him mingled manliness and beauty with a form to match. The prince was amazed at such noble looks; for the eyes of prudent kings are instinctive heralds, although the ear cannot hear them. He received the guest with a welcome; then while Electra toiled to help him, he provided a rich table of fine fare, flattering his guest with friendly address that left nothing to be desired: for it was a bounteous feast. But Cadmos bent his neck towards the ground, and hid looks of disquiet from the attendants, and hardly touched the banquet. He sat opposite the hospitable lady, but scarce stealing a glance at her served himself with a modest and timid hand.
§ 3.234 As they feasted, the breathing reeds of Corybantic Ida resounded one after another in succession; the players' hands skipt along the riddling run of the tootling pipe, and the fingers beat out their tune in cadence, dancing and pressing the sound; the clanging cymbals in brazen pairs struck ringing blows running in cadence with the sets of reeds; the harp itself with its seven strings twanged aloud under the quill.
§ 3.243 But after the banquet, when Cadmos had had enough of the Bistonian pipe, he drew his seat nearer to the queen, who questioned him with great curiosity. He left aside the fever of his sorrowful sea-wanderings, and spoke of his illustrious lineage: the words poured in ceaseless flow like a fountain from his open lips.
§ 3.248 Beloved lady, why do you ask me thus of my blood and breeding? I liken the swift-passing generations of mortal man to the leaves. Some leaves the wild winds scatter over the earth when autumn season comes; others the woodland trees grow on their bushy heads in spring-time. Such are the generations of men, short-lived: one rides life's course, until death brings it low; one still flourishes, only to give place to another: for time moves ever back upon itself, changing form as it flows from hoary age to youth.
§ 3.257 But I will tell you my lineage with its noble sons. There is a city Argos, famous for horses, and Hera's habitation, the navel of the island of Tantalides. There a man begat a daughter, and a beautiful daughter, – Inachos, famed burgher of the land Inachian. A templeman he was, and brooded over the awful rites that spoke the voice of the divine cityholder, he chief and eldest in practice of her mysteries: aye, he refused to wed his daughter to Zeus lord of the gods, leader of the stars, all for reverence of Hera . . . at the time when Io changed her face and became a cattleshaped heifer; when she was driven to pasture along with the herd of kine; when Hera made sleepless Argus her herdsman to that calf – spotted Argus, covered with unwavering eyes. He was to watch the horned bride of Zeus, Zeus whom eye may not see. To pasture went the girl Io, trembling at the eyes of her busy-peeping drover: then pierced by the limb-gnawing gadfly, she scored the gulf of the Ionian sea with travelling hoof. She came as far as Aigyptos, my own river, which my people have called Neilos by name because year by year that watery consort covers Earth with new slime by its muddy flood – she came as far as Aigyptos, where after her cow's form, after putting off the horned image ordained by heaven, she became a goddess of fruitful crops; when the fruit starts up, the fruit of Egyptian Demeter my stronghorned Io, scented vapour is carried around by fragrant breezes.
§ 3.284 There she brought forth Epaphos the Toucher to Zeus, so called because the divine bedfellow with love-mad hands touched the inviolate breasts of the heifer child of Inachos. Epaphos the god-begotten was father of Libya; to Libya's bower came Poseidaon on his travels, migrating as far as Memphis in search of Epaphos' maiden daughter. There the girl received the denizen of the deep, now a traveller by land, and brought forth Belos the Libyan Zeus, the husbandman of my family. And now the new voice of Zeus Asbystes which the thirsty sands give forth in soothsaying is equal to the Chaonian dove. Belos was father of a numerous family of children, as many as five: Phineus, and Phoenix who went abroad; with them grew up Agenor, who flitted from city to city and belonged to each in turn, a man of unstable life, my father – he travelled to Thebes after Memphis, to Assyria after Thebes. Then there was the wise Aigyptos, who lived on Egyptian soil, ill-fated father of many children, who begat all those flocks of short-lived sons; and Danaos who went abroad, who armed his daughters against that family of men, and drew a weddings-word, when the marriage-chambers were reddened with blood of the murdered bridegrooms, and with secret swords on armed beds, Enyo the female bedded Ares the male naked and helpless.
§ 3.308 Nay, but Hypermnestra was displeased with this bridal crime. She thrust away her father's commands, – that bad goodfather! she let the winds carry his words away, and kept her hand clean from blood and steel: those two consummated a proper wedlock. But our sister in her youthful bloom was ravished away by a bold vagabond bull, if bull he really was; but I do not know how to believe it if bulls desire marriage with a woman. And Agenor sent me along with my brothers to track our sister and the girl's wild robber, that bull the bastard voyager over a waveless sea. That is why my random journeying brings me here.
§ 3.320 Such was the tale of Cadmos in the cloistered palace; the words poured from his eloquent lips, as he told the sting of a father's threat when he would urge on his children, and the counterfeit bull travelling the Tyrian surf, the ravisher of the Sidonian bride, no catching the ravisher, no news of the bride.
§ 3.325 When Electra heard, she answered in words of consolation: My guest, let sister and country and father pass into the whirlpool of Forgetfulness and unremembering silence! For this is the way men's life runs on, bringing trouble upon trouble; since all that are born of mortal womb are slaves by necessity to Fate the Spinner. I am witness, queen though I am, if I was ever born myself one of those Pleiads, seven girls whom our mother once carried under her heart in labour, seven times having called Eileithyia at her lying-in to lighten the pangs of birth after birth – I am witness! for my house is far from my father's; no Sterope is near me, no Maia my companion, nor sister Celaino beside me at my hearth; I have not dandled up and down sister Taygete's Lacedaimon at my breast nor held the merry boy on my cherishing arm; I do not see Alcyone's house hard by, or hear Merope herself speak some heart-warming word! Here is something besides which I lament even more – in the bloom of his youth my own son has left his home, just when the down was on his cheek, my Dardanos has gone abroad to the bosom of the Idaian land; he has given the firstling crop of his hair to Phrygian Simoeis, and drunk the alien water of river Thymbrios. And away by the boundary of Libya my father still suffers hardship, old Atlas with chafing shoulders bowed, upholding the seven-zoned vault of the sky.
§ 3.351 Still and all with these great sufferings I feed a comfortable hope, by the promises of Zeus, that with my other sisters I shall pass from the earth to the stars' Atlantean vault, and dwell in heaven myself a star with my sisters six. Then do you too calm your own sorrows. Unforeseen, for you also the terrible thread of Fate immovable is rolling the eddy of your wandering lot of life, and the seal is set. Have a heart to endure in exile the unbending shackle of necessity, and feed the prevailing hope which foreruns things to come, if Io with the first seed has rooted your race, if you have got from Libya Poseidon's blood in your family. Abide among foreigners like Dardanos, there make your home; dwell in a city of strangers like your own father Agenor, like Danaos your father's brother. For another man also who carried his home on his back, one of the divine stock of Io, a heavenly sprout dropt from Zeus, named Byzas, who had drunk the seven-mouth water of self-begotten Nile, inhabited the neighbouring land, where alone the Bosporos shore flows the water once traversed by the Inachian heifer. To all those who dwelt about he showed a light, when he had turned aside the neck of that mad bull unbending.
§ 3.372 So she spoke, lulling to sleep the anxieties of Cadmos. But Father Zeus sent his quick messenger Maia's son on outspread wings to Electra's house, that he might offer Harmonia to Cadmos for the harmony of wedlock – that maiden immigrant from heaven, whom Ares the wife-thief begat in secret love with Aphrodite. The mother did not nurse it – she was ashamed of the baby which told its own tale of the furtive bed; but away from the bosom of the sky she carried the suckling, lying in her arm, to the fostering house of Electra, when the childbed Seasons had just delivered her baby still wet, when her breasts were tight and swollen with the gushing white sap. Electra received the bastard daughter with equal rights, and joined the newborn girl on one breast with her newborn Emathion, held with equal love and care her two different nurslings in her arm. As a shaggy lioness of the wilds, mother of twin young suckling-cubs in the jungle, with her milky dew fits twin teats to the pair of cubs, and gives her twin young each a share of her teats, and licks their skin and the neck as yet hairless, nursing the young birthmates with equal care: so Electra then with loving breast foster-mothered her brace of newborn babes, the boy and girl, and cherished them with equal care. Often she pressed to her with open hand and loving arm her baby son and his age-mate girl, on this side and that taking turns of the sap from her rich breast; and she set on her knees the manly boy with the womanly girl, letting out the fold of her lowered gown so as to join thigh parted wide from neighbouring thigh; or singing songs for a sleep-charm, lulled both her babies to slumber with foster-mother's art, while she stretched her arm enclosing the children's necks, made her own knee their bed, fluttered the flap of her garment fanning the two faces, to keep the little ones cool, and quenched the waves of heat as the hand made wind poured out its breath against it.
§ 3.409 While Cadmos sat near the prudent queen, into the house came Hermes in the shape of a young man, unforeseen, uncaught, eluding the doorkeeper with his robber's foot. About his rosy face on both sides locks of hair uncovered hung loose. A light bloom of ruddy down ran about the edge of his round cheeks on either side, fresh young hair newly grown. Like a herald, he held his rod as usual. Wrapt in cloud from head to toe, with face unseen he reached the rich table when the meal was at an end. Emathion saw him not though close at hand, nor did Harmonia herself and Cadmos at her board, nor the company of serving men; only god-fearing Electra perceived Hermes the eloquent. Into a corner of the house he led her in surprise to tell his secrets, and spoke in the language of men:
§ 3.425 Good be with you, my mother's sister, bedfellow of Zeus! Most blessed of all women that shall be hereafter, because Cronion keeps the lordship of the world for your children, and your stock shall steer all the cities of the earth! This is the dower of your love. And along with Maia my mother you shall shine with the Seven Stars in the sky, running your course with Helios, rising with Selene. Children's friend, I am Hermes, one of your own family, wing-spreading Messenger of the immortals. From heaven I have been sent by your bedfellow, the guests' protector ruling in the heights, on behalf of your own god-fearing guest. Then do you also obey your Cronion, and let your daughter Harmonia go along with her yearsmate Cadmos as his bride, without asking for bridal gifts. Grant this grace to Zeus and the Blessed ones; for when the immortals were in distress, this stranger saved them all by his music. This man has helped your bedfellow in trouble, this man has opened the day of freedom for Olympos! Let not your girl bewitch you with mother-loving groans, but give her in marriage to Cadmos our Saviour, in obedience to Cronion and Ares and Cythereia.
§ 4.1 BOOK 4
Tracking the fourth over the deep, you will see Harmonia sailing together with her age-mate Cadmos.
With these words, Fine-rod Hermes departed, fanning his light wings, and the flat of his extended shoes oared him as quick as the winds of heaven in their course. Nor did the Thracian lady, the pilot of the Cabeiroi, [disobey his bidding]; but she had respect for Zeus, and curving her extended fingers with a significant movement towards Ares' unwedded daughter, she beckoned Harmonia by this clever imitation of speech. The other strained the answering gleam from her eyelids, and saw the round of Electra's face unsmiling, as he cheeks like silent heralds boded the heavy load of a new unspoken distress.
§ 4.12 The maiden leapt up and followed her mother into her high-built chamber. Her mother rolled back the bolt of a sevennook-shotten chamber sealed with many seals, and crossed the doorstone: her knees trembled restlessly in loving anxiety and fear. She caught and lifted the girl's hand and rosy arm with her own snow-white hand – you might almost say that you saw white-armed Hera holding Hebe's hand.
§ 4.20 But when treading the floor with her crimson shoes she reached the farthest curve of the resplendent room. Atlas's daughter seated the sorrowful maiden upon a handsome chair; then she in her turn sank upon a silver-shining stool, and declared Cronion's message to the incredulous girl, and explained everything which she had heard from the Olympian herald disguised as a land in human form. When the maiden heard of this marriage of much wandering and this unstable husband, this homeless man under their roof, she declared she would have no stranger, and refused all that Cadmos's patron proposed on Zeus his father's behalf, that cattle-drover Hermes! She would rather have one of her own city as husband, and away with a carryhouse mate and a wedding without wedding-gifts! Then clasping her foster-mother's hand with her own sorrowing palm, bathed in tears she burst into reproachful speech:
§ 4.36 Mother mine, what has possessed you to cast off your own girl? Do you join your own daughter to some upstart fellow like this? What gift will this sailor man put into my hand? Will he give me the ship's hawser for bride-price? I did not know you were keeping your own child, the poor banished maiden, for marriage with a vagrant – you, my kind nurse! I have others to woo me, and better ones, of our own city: why must I have a bedfellow with empty hands, naked and bare, a foreign vagrant, a runaway from his father? But you will say he helped your husband Cronion. Why did not the man get from Zeus an Olympian gift of honour, if indeed he was defender of Olympos, as you say? Why did not Hera the consort of Zeus, betroth virgin Hebe to the champion of Zeus? Your husband Zeus who rules in the heights needs no Cadmos. Cronides forgive me – divine Hermes lied in what he said about Father Zeus. I don't know how I can believe that he neglected furious Ares the pilot of warfare, and called in a mortal man to be partner in the game – he the master of world and sky! Here is a great marvel – he locked up all those Titans in the pit, and then wanted Cadmos, to destroy only one! You know how my father's wedded – two had their sisters. Zeus my father's father possessed the bed of his sister Hera, by the family rule of marriage; both the parents of Harmonia, Ares and Cythereia, who mounted one bed, were of one father, another pair of blood-kindred. What miserable necessity! Sisters may have a brother for bedfellow, I must have a banished man!
§ 4.67 But now tricky-minded Aphrodite girt her body in the heart-bewitching cestus-belt, and clothing herself in the loverobe of Persuasion she entered Harmonia's fragrant chamber. She had doffed her heavenly countenance, and put on a form like Peisinoe, a girl of the neighbourhood. As though in love with Cadmos and suffering from some hidden sickness, with but little brightness in her pale face, she chased away the maids; and when Harmonia was alone she sat by her side and said as in shame with deceitful tongue:
§ 4.77 Happy girl! What a handsome stranger you have in the house! What a man to court you, most blessed of women! What a lovely bedfellow you will see, that no other maiden has won! Surely his blood comes from Assyria! That must be his home, beside the river of that enchanting Adonis, for that lovely young man came from Libanos where Cythereia dances. No, I was wrong! I don't suppose any mortal womb bred Cadmos; no, he is sprung from Zeus and he has concealed his stock! I know where this young Olympian comes from. If Titan Atlas ever begat Electra as Maia's sister, here's cousin Hermes without wings come as husband for Harmonia. Then that's why we sing hymns to Cadmilos! He has only changed his heavenly shape and still he is called Cadmos. Or if he is some other god in human shape, perhaps Apollo is Emathion's guest in this house.
§ 4.92 World-famed maiden, you are more blessed than your mother for Olympian desire and Olympian marriage! Here is a great marvel! Zeus Allwise wedded Electra in secret – Apollo himself woos Harmonia in the light! Happy girl, whom Far-shooter desired! I only wish Apollo would be as eager for marriage with Peisinoe too! I don't say no to Apollo, like Daphne, I can tell you! I will not feel like Harmonia! No, I will leave my inheritance and house and the parents whom I love – I will go on my travels to marriage with Apollo! I remember once a carving like him. For I once went with our father into the house of oracle, and there I saw the Pythian image; and when I saw your vagrant, I thought I saw the statue of Phoibos again in this place.
§ 4.106 But you will say, Phoibos has a goldgleaming diadem. Cadmos is gold in all his body! If you like, take all my serfs innumerable – for him, I will put in your hands all my gold and silver, I will give royal robes of the Tyrian Sea, and the house of my fathers, if you like; accept, if I dare to say it, my father and mother too, accept all my waiting-women, and give me only this man for my bedfellow!
§ 4.114 Maiden, why do you tremble? You will sail the seas in the spring-time across the narrow water – but with lovely Cadmos I will traverse the infinite Ocean stream in winter! Tremble not at the heavyrumbling briny swell, because love's cargo will be kept safe on the brine by Aphrodite daughter of the brine. Maiden, you have Cadmos, seek not the throne of Olympos! I desire not the shining Erythraean stone of the Indies, nor the all-golden tree of the Hesperides, I delight not in the amber of the Heliades, so much as one shadowy night in which this vagrant shall hold Peisinoe in his arms. If you fetch your lineage from Ares, from Aphrodite, your provident mother has found you a marriage well worthy of theirs. I have never beheld such a flower; spring itself blooms in Cadmos by nature's gift. I have seen his rosefinger hand, I have seen his glance distilling sweet honey; the cheeks of his lovebegetting face are red as roses; his feet go twinkling, ruddybrown in the middle, and changing colour at the ends into shining snow; his arms are lilywhite. I will pass the hair, or I may provoke Phoibos by blaming the hue of his Therapnaian iris. Whenever he moved his full eyes with their heart-gladdening glance, there was the full moon shining with sparkling light; when he shook his hair and bared his neck, there appeared the morning star! I would not speak of his lips; but Persuasion dwells in his mouth, the ferry of the Loves, and pours out honey-sweet speech. Aye, the Graces manage his whole body: hands and fingers I shrink to judge, or I may find fault with the whiteness of milk.
§ 4.143 Accept me for your companion, unhappy me! but if I touch the boy's right hand and stroke his tunic I may find comfortable physic for my secret sickness. I may see his neck bare, or press a finger as if unconsciously while he sits; I could gladly die, if he would only slip a willing hand into the orb of my bosom and press my two breasts, and hold his closed lips upon my lips to delight me with brushing kisses. But if I could still hold the boy in my arms, I will pass even to Acheron the River of Pain of my own free will, and with rapture even amid the many lamentations of all-forgetting Lethe. I will tell the dead of my fate, to awaken pity and envy alike in merciless Persephoneia; I will teach those grace-breathing kisses to women unhappy in love who died of that lovely fire, I will make the dead jealous, if women still grudge at the Paphian in Lethe after their doom.
§ 4.160 I will go with you if you wish, even as your companion, I tremble not before unfamiliar wanderings. Hard-hearted girl, become the lawful wife to Cadmos; I would be chambermaid to you both, Harmonia and husband. – But again I tremble before you, lest some time I awaken anger and jealousy for your bed tho' you fain would hide it, since even Hera, goddess thou she is and queen of the heavens, grudges Zeus his bastard wives on earth. She was angry with Europa and tormented the wandering Io; she spared not even goddesses; because his mother was angry, Ares persecuted Leto with child in her birthpangs. If you are not jealous to find me a physic for my desire, give me this bedfellow for one dawn, yes I beseech you, for the course of one night too; if you grudge it, kill me with your own hand, that I may know rest from carrying this always night and day, fed on the secret places of my heart, this mighty implacable fire!
§ 4.177 She said her say, and with her girdle drove bedshy Harmonia to her voyage, stung as with a gadfly, and now obedient to desire. She changed her mind, and with divided purpose wished both to have the stranger and to live in her own land. So smitted to the heart with the sting, she spoke:
§ 4.182 Ah me, who ahs changed my heart? Save you, my country! Farewell, Emathion and all my house! Farewell grottoes of the Cabeiroi and Corybantian cliffs; never again shall I see the revelling companies of my mother's Hecate with their torches in the night. Farewell, maidenhood, I wed my sweet Cadmos! Artemis, be not shocked, I am to cross the swell of the blue brine. But you will say, the deep is pitiless; I care nothing for the maddened surges – let Harmonia and Cadmos drown together, and my mother's sea may receive us both. I follow my boy, calling upon the goddesses who have wedded theirs! If my bedfellow carries me to the sunrise this voyage, I will proclaim how Orion loved Dawn, and I will recall the match of Cephalos; if I go to the misty sunset, my comfort is Selene herself who felt the same for Endymion upon Latmos.
§ 4.197 Such words the girl uttered in mindwandering plaints, and could not be restrained, her mind ravaged with the sting of desire. With drops of grief her face was wet as she kissed Electra's hand and eyes, her feet and head and breast, and Emathion's eyes, with shamefast lips although he was her brother. She embraced all her handmaids, and caressed lamenting the rows of the lifeless carven doors all round, her bed and the walls of her maiden chamber. Last the girl took up and kissed the dust of her country's soil.
§ 4.207 And then Electra took Harmonia by the hand, under the witnessing escort of the gods, and took her undowered to Cadmos as his due, wiping the streaming shower from her face. Early in the morning the traveller received the Cyprian's daughter with an old waiting-woman, and left the house, having as the queen's gift a servant to guide him through the city to the sea.
§ 4.213 When the Moon saw the girl following a stranger alone the shore above the sea, and boiling under fiery constraint, she reproached Cypris in mocking words: So you make war even upon your children, Cypris! Not even the fruit of your womb is spared by the goad of love! Don't you pity the girl you bore, hardheart? What other girl can you pity then, when you drag your own child into passion? – Then you must go wandering too, my darling. Say to your mother, Paphian's child, 'Phaethon mocks you, and Selene puts me to shame.' Harmonia, love-tormented exile, leave to Mene her bridegroom Endymion, and care for your vagrant Cadmos. Be ready to endure as much trouble as I have, and when you are wary with lovebegetting anxiety, remember lovewounded Selene.
§ 4.226 While she was speaking, Cadmos hastened his companions over the shore. He released the back-running hawsers of the forthfaring ship, and shook out the sail to the mild spring breeze, and guided the timbered sea-car across the sea-swell, making the two ropes fast to a pin bracing the sheets equally shipshape and Phoinician fashion: for he knew from his fathers the traditional art of seamanship. He remained by the steering-oar, but he kept the girl Harmonia untouched sitting on the poop, his companion, when he saw strangers coming aboard as passengers whom the sailors were then taking in with the fare. One of the passengers seeing these two, mingled his voice with admiration as he said gently: That sailor looks like Love himself! An no wonder that Aphrodite of the sea has a mariner son. But Eros carries bow and arrow and lifts a firebrand, he's a little one with wings on him; and this I see is a Sidonian ketch. Perhaps that is the cunning old thief Ares sitting on the poop, and carrying Aphrodite into Libanos, from Thrace, whence he sailed last night. Be gracious, mother of Love! Send me a following wind in a waveless calm over your mother sea stormless!
§ 4.247 Such was the sort of things the travellers said to himself, looking keenly at Harmonia out of the corner of his eye.
§ 4.249 So Cadmos finished his voyage to Hellas, with the inspired voice in his mind stinging like a gadfly; and the inspired word of Zeus ever ran unerring in his ears and dove him on. There he was to present newer gifts to All Hellenes, and to make them forget the lifebringing art of Danaos the master-mischiefmaker, Danaos the waterbringer: for what good did he do for the Achaians, if once he had dug the ground with his brazen pickaxes, and pecking at the flooded hollow of the gaping earth quenched the thirst of Argos? if he made wet the steppings of their feet for his dusty people, and brought up a streamlet from the deep caves – the stranger's gift of water?
§ 4.260 But Cadmos brought gifts of voice and thought for all Hellas; he fashioned tools to echo the sounds of the tongue, he mingled sonant and consonant in one order of connected harmony. So he rounded off a graven model of speaking silence; for he had learnt the secrets of his country's sublime art, an outside intruder into the wisdom of Egypt, while Agenor dwelt nine years in Memphis and founded hundred-gated Thebes. There he pressed out the milk of the holy books ineffable, scratched their scratches across with backfaring hand and traced their rounded circles. And he showed forth the Euian secrets of Osiris the wanderer, the Egyptian Dionysos. He learned the nightly celebration of their mystic art, and declaimed the magic hymn in the wild secret language, intoning a shrill alleluia. While a boy in the temple full of stone images, he had come to know the inscriptions caved by artists deep into the walls. With much-pondering thought he had measured the flaming arch of the innumerable stars, and learnt the sun's course and the measure of the earth, turning the intertwined fingers of his flexible hand. He understood the changing circuits of the moon as he comes back and back again – how she changes her returning shape in three circles, new-shining, half-moon, and gleaming with full face; how her splendour now touching, now shrinking back, at the male furnace of father Helios is brought to birth without a mother, as she filches the father's selfbegotten fire ever lighted again.
§ 4.285 Such was Cadmos. Quickly he set out for the Achaian cities, and left his seafaring. With Harmonia, he conveyed a swarm of seawandering companions turned travellers by land, in horsecarriages and laden wagons, on the way to the oracular sanctuaries. Then he reached Delphi, and asked an oracle from the navel axle of never-silent Pytho; and the Pythian axle speaking of himself uttered oracles of sense, resounding about in hollow tone:
§ 4.293 Cadmos, in vain you travel round and round with wandering steps. You seek a bull which now cow ever calved; you seek a bull which no mortal knows how to find. Renounce Assyria, and take an earthly cow to guide your mission; search not for a bull of Olympos. Europa's bridegroom no drover knows how to drive; he frequents no pasture, no meadow, obeys no goad, is ordered by no whip. He knows how to bear the dainty harness of Cypris, not the plow's yokeband; he strains his neck for Love alone, and not for Demeter. No, let pass your regret for your Tyrian father, and abide among foreigners; found a city with the name of Egyptian Thebes your home, in the place where the cow of fortune shall sink and rest her heavyknee foot.
§ 4.307 So speaking he lulled the tripods' wild voice: the ridges of Parnassos quaked, when they heard the noise of their neighbour Phoibos; Castalia marked it, and her inspired water bubbled in oracular rills.
§ 4.311 The god spoke: and Cadmos gave place. Near the temple he saw a cow, and went beside her as she walked. His men followed, and made sparing pace, equal to the slow-obeying hoof of the unerring cow, sedulous servants. On the way, Cadmos espied from the road a sacred place conspicuous; the place where the Pythian hand noticed on a hill the ninecircling coil of the dragon's back, and put to sleep the deadly poison of the Cirrhaian serpent. Then the wanderer left the heads of Parnassos and trod the neighbouring soil of Daulis, whence comes the tale I hear of the dumb woespinner Philomela and her talking dress, whom Tereus defiled, when Hera, queen of wedlock, turned her back on the wedding among the mountains with no wedding dances; how the girl mourned over the undecked pallet of the bridebed on the common road; how the girl tongue-shorn bewailed this Thracian rape; and how voiceless Echo copied her tears and groaned too, bewailing the bedshy maiden Philomela, as the blood of her maidenhood ran mingling with the red stream from her new-severed tongue.
§ 4.331 He saw too the city of Tityos, where that bold son of Earth marching through the fair-leafy woods of Panopeus lifted the sacred robe of Leto and attempted violence. He set a footstep on Tanagra bottom; and passing from Coroneia to the soil of Haliartos, he came near to the city of Thespiai, and Plataiai in its deep ravines, and Aonia on the Boitoian ground. This is the place where Orion the lovesick son of Earth was brought low, great as he was, by the Scorpion, who came to help the hard-hearted Archeress: he was in the act of lifting the lowest edge of the tunic of the unmated goddess, when crawling slow came that earthly horror, hit his adversary's heal and pierced it with freezing sting.
§ 4.344 He traversed the land of Chaironeia, where the cow's hoof was whitened in cutting the silvery dust, and following the many winding circuits of the rocky path it shook off the white dirt from its dusty feet. Then the oracular hoof of the cow gave way, and she sank to the ground foretelling the city to be. Now that the divine utterance out of the Pythian cave was fulfilled, Cadmos brought the sacred cow beside an altar smoking with incense, and sought for a rill of spring water, that he might cleanse his ministering hands and pour the pure water over the sacrifice; for as yet there were no wineplanted gardens to show the delicate fruit of their ripening crop.
§ 4.356 He stayed his feet beside dragonbreeding Dirce: and stood amazed when he saw the speckleback serpent, Ares' child, appear from one side and girdle the spring with snaky coil. The serpent scared away the great company who followed Cadmos, biting tone under the chest with his flashing jaws, rending another with a stroke of bloody tooth, tearing another's lifesaving liver when he showed fight and laying him dead: a rough mane slipping out of the dank head ran down disorderly over his neck. Another he scared leaping above the man's temples, ran up another's chin irresistible to strike his eye with poison-shooting dew, and darkened the sparkling gleam of the closing orb. One he caught by the foot and held it in his jaws, tearing it with his bite – spat out green foam from his teeth upon the lad's body, and the greenish poison froze the body livid like steel. Another panted under the strokes of the jaws, and the membranes of the brain billowed throbbing out of the head at the poisonous bite, while a stream of matter ran down through the drenched nostrils out of the melting brain.
§ 4.365 Then quickly the dragon curled round Cadmos, creeping up his legs, and bound him in dangerous bonds; then raising his body high above him with a mounting lurch of his limbs, darted at the round navel of his oxhide shield. The man with his legs enclosed by those slanting rings was exhausted by the heavy weight of the long trailing snake – a horrible burden! but the wearied bearer still stood upright, until the serpent dragged him to the ground and opened his cruel mouth – the monster gaped, and the bloody portal of his raw-ravening throat yawned wide: he turned his head sideways, and with shaking hood curved his neck backwards stretched high over the middle of his coils.
§ 4.389 But when Cadmos was nearly exhausted, Athena came near, shaking the aegis-cape with the Gorgon's head and snaky hair, the forecast of coming victory; and the nation-mustering deity cried aloud to the dumbfounded man –
§ 4.393 Cadmos, helpmate and ally of Zeus Giantslayer in the battle! Are you afraid when you see only one snake? In those battles Cronion trusted in you, and brought low Typhon with all that shock of heads, and every one a snake! Tremble no more at the hiss from the creature's teeth. Pallas bids you on! Brazen Ares shall not save his reptile guardian beside murderous Dirce. But when he is killed, take the creature's horrible teeth, sow the ground all about with the snaky corn, reap the viperous harvest of warrior giants, join the battalions of the Earthborn in one common destruction, and leave only five living: let the crop of the Sown sprout up to glorious fruitage for Thebes that shall be.
§ 4.406 With these words Athena encouraged the discomfited Cadmos, and then she cleft the aery deeps with windswift foot, until she entered the house of Zeus. But Cadmos where he stood on the dry earth lifted a well-rounded boundary-stone of the broad farm-land, a rocky missile! and with a straight cast of the stone smashed the top of the dragon's head; then drawing a whetted knife from his thigh he cut through the monster's neck. The hood severed from the body lay apart, but the tail still moved, rolling in the dust until it had uncoiled again its familiar rings. There lay the dragon stretched on the ground, dead, and over the corpse furious Ares shouted in heavy anger. By his wrath Cadmos was destined to change his limbs for a curling shape, and to have a strange aspect of dragon's countenance at the ends of the Illyrian country.
§ 4.421 But that was ordained for long after. Now he gathered the fruit of death inside a helmet of bronze, the grim harvest of the creature's jaws. Then he drew upon the land the humped plow of Pallas from her holy place in those parts, and plowed a battle-breeding furrow in the bright earth, and sowed long lines of the poison-casting teeth. There grew out the self-delivered crop of giants: one shot up with head high, shaking the top of a mailcoated breast; one with jutting head stretched a horrid shoulder over the opening earth; another bent forward above ground as far as the navel, one again rose on the ground half-finished and lifted a soil-grown shield; another shook a nodding plume before him and showed not yet his chest; while still creeping up slowly from his mother's flanks he showed fight against fearless Cadmos, clad in armour he was born in. O what a great miracle! Eileithyia armed him whom the mother had not yet spawned! And there was one who cast his brother-spear, fumbling and half-visible; one who lightly drew the whole body into the light, but left his toes unfinished sticking in the ground.
§ 4.441 Cadmos for all that did not neglect Athena's injunction. He reaped the stubble of giants springing up ever anew. One he struck with windswift spear over the breast, hit one on the broad neck by the collarbone shearing the bones of the hairy throat: another he tore with hurtling stone while he sowed as far as the belly. The blood of the dreadful giants flowed in rivers; Ares slipt in the gore staining his limbs with crimson, and Victory's robe was reddened with purple drops while she stood beside the battle. Another showed fight, and Cadmos ran his sword through his cognate shield of oxhide, into the hipjoint and out at the small of his back. The slaughter stayed not: as the giants were cut and smitten with the sword, a deadly spout of bloody dew bubbled up.
§ 4.455 Then by the wise counsel of Pallas he lifted a stone high above the giants' heads; and they drunken with gory lust for Enyo, went wild with warlike fury and destroyed each other with the steel of their cousin, and found burial in the dust. One fought with another: with ruddy gore the surface of the shield was drenched and spotted and darkened, as a giant died; the crop of that field was shorn by the brother-murdering blade of an earthgrown knife.
§ 5.1 BOOK 5
Look into the fifth next, and you will see Actaion also, whom no pricket brought forth, torn by dogs as a fleeing fawn.
As soon as Cadmos had reaped the snaky crop of toothplanted battles, and shorn the stubble of the giants, pouring the blood libation to Ares as the firstling feast of harvest-slaughter, he cleansed his body in dragon-breeding Circe, and sacrificed the Delphian cow on the godbuilt altar as fair offering for Pallas. As the first rite in the sacrifice, he sprinkled the two horns on both sides with barleygrains; he drew out and bared the falchion knife which hung at his thigh alongside by an Assyrian strap, and cut the top hairs of the longhorned head with the hilted blade. Theoclymenos grasped the heifer's horn and drew back the throat, Thyestes cut through the sinews of the neck with a double-edged axe; the stone altar of Athena Onca was reddened with the smear of the creature's blood. Then the cow's horned front was struck, and prone the creature fell. They brittled her with the steel, they cut through the sides and carved her up with the knife, they strips the hard covering of hide and stretched it out.
§ 5.20 The prince himself was busy, after folding his bright mantle and laying it on the ground. He cut out raw slices of the sturdy thighs, chopt them small and set them between two layers of fat; he pierced the long tripes with iron spits and stretched them over the embers, grilling them with gentle heat; then he brought them, pierced on the pointed bronze, and lifting the glowing spits one by one, laid them in a row on the grass amid the flowers – steward of a lowly table! The fragrant smoke of Assyrian incense scattered curling through the air. The sacrifice ended, there was a feast: and Cadmos took and held out and served to each an equal portion of choice food. The rows of banqueters at the round table soon had enough and wanted no more.
§ 5.35 The dragon's death was not the end of the labours of Cadmos; but after the Serpent, and after the savage tribes of giants, he fought the champions of the Ectenes and the Aonian people, reaping a barbarian harvest of Ares, and fell on the neighbouring Temmicans: when he called for soldiers, a motley swarm of neighbours came to his help. To both armies alike Strife joined Enyo and brought forth Tumult: when they met in battle bows were bent, spears hurled, helmets shook, shots whizzed, oxhides rattled struck on the bossy round with chunks like millstones. The blood of the fallen ran in streams; many a man fell headlong half-dead on the fruitful earth, and rolled in the dust. Then the army of his adversaries bowed suppliant before Cadmos, and the conflict ceased. After the bloody whirl of battle Cadmos laid the foundation of Thebes yet unfortified.
§ 5.51 He divided the spaces, and many furrows were cut this way and that, the beds of many branching roads were cut by the sharp-footed iron of the oxplow; many streets were measured at right angles to the four opposing winds to take their share of the grasslands. Then the Aonian city was embellished with the stony beauty of Tyrian art: all were busy, one workman with another, cutting under the Boiotian slopes with earthcleaving pick the variegated rock, which the hills near the thick forest of tree-clad Teumessos brought forth, which Helicon grew and Cithairon brought to birth. He completed temples for the gods and houses for the people, planning with his builder's rules. He scored the shape of a city surrounded by walls upon impregnable foundation-stones, with seven entries, imitating in his art heaven with its seven zones, but he left the walls for Amphion to build for the future inhabitants, and to protect, with towerbuilding harp.
§ 5.67 He dedicated seven gates, equal in number to the seven planets. First towards the western clime he allotted the Oncaian Gate to Mene Brighteyes, taking the name from the honk of cattle, because the Moon herself, bullshaped, horned, driver of cattle, being triform is Tritonis Athene. The second gate he gave in honour to Hermaon, the shining neighbour of Mene. The fourth he traced out and named for Electra Phaethon's daughter, because when he appears, Electra's morning gleam sparkles with like colour; and the midmost gate opposite the Dawn he dedicated to fiery Helios, since he is in the middle of the planets. The fifth he gave to Ares, the third to Aphrodite, in order that Phaethon might be between them both on either side, and cut off his neighbour the furious Ares from Aphrodite. The sixth he made an image of Zeus, shining high with more glorious craftsmanship. The last fell to the lot of Cronos the seventh planet.
§ 5.88 The daughters of the Aonians struck up Harmonia's marriage-hymn with dances: the dancing girls sang the name of the Thracian bride, in that palace and its fine bridal chamber. The Paphian also, her lovely mother, decorated her daughter's newbuilt bower for Cadmos, while she sang of the god-ordained marriage; her father danced with joy for his girl, bare and stript of his armour, a tame Ares! and laid his right arm unweaponed about Aphrodite, while he sounded the spirit of the Loves on his wedding-trumpet answering the panspipes: he had shaken off from his helmet head the plumes of horsehair so familiar in the battlefield, and wreathed bloodless garlands about his hair, weaving a merry song for Love. Dancing with the immortals came Ismenian Apollo to Harmonia's wedding, while he twangled a hymn of love on his sevenstring harp. The nine Muses too struck up a lifestirring melody: Polymnia nursingmother of the dance waved her arms, and sketched in the air an image of a soundless voice, speaking with hands and moving eyes in a graphic picture of silence full of meaning. Victory turned a tripling foot for the pleasure of Zeus, and stood by as bridesmaid crying triumph for Cadmos the god's champion; about the bridebed she wove the wedding song with her virgin voice, and moved her gliding steps in the pretty circles of the dance, while she fluttered her wings, shamefast beside the wings of the Loves.
§ 5.113 A light arose, like a misnamed dawn in the evening, from the splendour no less brilliant of those gleaming torches scattered everywhere. All night long, the merry rout of untiring dancers were singing with clear voices beside the bridal chamber in happy romps; since Hermes anxious for a sleepless wedding night had left his familiar wand behind, because that was the rationer of sleep. So Thebes was the Olympian dancing-place; and one might see Cadmos and Zeus touching the same table!
§ 5.121 And now rose the Serpent, companion of the northern Waggon, bringing the bride-adorning season to the marriage halls, a messenger with news of things to come: for Harmonia's bridegroom along with his age-mate bride was destined to change his human shape for a serpent's. The Blessed, one after another, brought their gifts of honour to Cadmos as he hastened to his chamber. Zeus gave success in all things. Horsemaster Seabluehair proffered the gifts of the sea, in honour to his sister Hera the renowned, for she was Ares' mother. Hermes gave a sceptre, Ares a spear, Apollo a bow. Hephaistos lifted upon Harmonia's head a crown plumed with precious stones of many colours, a golden circlet hung over her temples. Golden-throne Hera provided a jewel-set throne. Aphrodite wishing to delight Ares in the deep shrewdness of her mind, clasped a golden necklace showing pale about he girl's blushing neck, a clever work of Hephaistos set with sparkling gems in masterly refinement. This he had made for his Cyprian bride, a gift for his first glimpse of Archer Eros. For the heavyknee bridegroom always expected that Cythereia would bear him a hobbling son, having the image of his father in his feet. But his thought was mistaken; and when he beheld a whole-footed son brilliant with wings like Maia's son Hermes, he made this magnificent necklace.
§ 5.144 It was like a serpent with starspangled back and coiling shape. For as the twoheaded amphisbaina in very sooth winds the coils between and spits her poison from either mouth, rolling along and along with double-gliding motion, and head crawling joins with head while she jumps twirling waves of her back sideways: so that magnificent necklace twisted shaking its crooked back, with its pair of curving necks, which came to meet at the navel, a flexible twoheaded serpent thick with scales; and by the curving joints of the work the golden circle of the moving spine bent round, until the head slid about with undulating movement and belched a mimic hissing through the jaws.
§ 5.158 With the two mouths on each side, where is the beginning and the end, was a golden eagle that seemed to be cutting the open air, upright between the serpent's heads, high-shining with fourfold nozzle of the four wings. One wing was covered with yellow jasper, one had the allwhite stone of Selene, which fades as the horned goddess wanes, and waxes when Mene newkindled distils her horn's liquid light and milks out the self-gotten fire of Father Helios. A third had the gleaming pearl, which by its gleam makes the gray swell of the Erythraian Sea sparkle shining. Right in the middle of the other, the Indian agate spat out its liquid light, gently shining in bright beauty.
§ 5.171 Where the two heads of the serpent came together from both sides, the mouths gaped wide and enclosed the eagle with both their jaws, enfolding it from this side and that. Over the shining front, rubies in the eyes shot their native brilliancy, which sent forth a sharp gleam, like a fiery lamp being kindled. Proud with the manifold shapes of stones was a sea, and an emerald stone grass-green welcomed the crystal adjoining like the foam, and showed the image of the white-crested brine becoming dark; here all clever work was fashioned, here all the brinebred herds of the deep sparkled in shining gold as though leaping about, and many a supple traveller danced halfseen, the dolphin skimming the brine which waggled its mimic tail selfmoved; flocks of many-coloured birds – you might almost think you heard the windy beat of their flapping wings, when Cythereia gave the glorious necklace to her girl, golden, bejewelled, to hang by the bride's neck.
§ 5.190 Soon Harmonia yoked by the cestus-girdle that guides wedded desire, carried in her womb the seed of many children whom she brought forth soon one by one: turn by turn she was delivered of her teeming burden by the birth of daughters, after four times nine circuits of the Moon had been fulfilled. First Autonoe leapt from her mother's fruitful womb, her first birthpangs after nine months' course with child. Then came Ino to be her sister, the beautiful consort of Athamas who bore him two children. Third appeared Agaue, who afterwards married with the giant stock and bore a son like to her fangborn husband. Then Semele fourth of the daughters grew up, the image of the Graces in her lovestriking looks, preserved for Zeus; although youngest of the sisters, she alone was given by nature the prerogative of unconquerable beauty. Last of all Harmonia added a little son to the brood of sisters, and made Cadmos happy – Polydoros, the morning star of the Aonian nation, younger than rosycheek Semele; but Pentheus a lawless prince pushed him aside and took the sceptre in Thebes. All this old Time was to bring to pass by and by.
§ 5.212 Cadmos now chose husbands for his daughters, and gave them over in four successive bridals, settling their weddings one by one. First Aristaios laden with gifts, he of the herds and he of the wilds, as he was named, the blood of allwise Apollo and Cyrene so ready with her hands, wedded Autonoe according to the rules of lawful marriage. Agenorides did not refuse his daughter to a goodson well acquainted with the art of feeding many; nay, he gave her to a very clever husband, a lifesaving son of Apollo, after he had calmed the pestilential star of fiery Maira by the lifepreserving breezes of heaven-sent winds. The wedding-feast also was very rich, since he gave the unyoked maid oxen for her treasure, he gave goats, he gave mountain-bred flocks; many a line of burden-bearers was forced to lift the load of great jars full of olive-oil, his marriage gifts, much travail of the clever honeybee he brought, in the riddled comb her masterpiece.
§ 5.229 That man ranging the mountains on his springing feet, first found out the business of hunting the prickets among the rocks they love: how the dog divines the scent of the unseen prey with intelligent nostril on the ankles of the hills, pricking up his ears on the crookpath course; he learnt the many-twining meshes of his cunning art, and the shape of the standing stakenet, and the morning track of animals over the sand and the spoor impressed in the untrodden earth. He taught also the huntsman those high boots for his feet, when he speeds on, steadily pressing the hounds in chase of their prey, and made him wear a short shirt with the thigh showing, lest the tunic hanging low should hinder the speed of the hunter's hurrying foot.
§ 5.242 That man invented the riddled hive with its rows of cells, and made a settled place for the labours of the wandering bees, which flit from flower to flower over the meadows and flutter on clusters of finefruiting plants, sucking dew from the top with the tips of their lips. He covered every limb from toenails to hair with a closewoven wrap of linen, to defend him from the formidable stings of the battling bees, and with the cunning trick of smothering smoke he tamed their malice. He shook in the air a torch to threaten the hive-loving bee, and lifting a pair of metal plates, he clapt the two together with rattling hands over the brood in the skep, while they buzzed and humblebumbled in ceaseless din; then cutting off the covering of wax with its manypointed cells, he emptied from the comb its gleaming treasure of honeydripping increase.
§ 5.258 He first found out the dew of the slicktrickling oil, when he cut into the fruit of the juicy olive with the press's heavy stone and scrouged out the rich feason. From the wellwooded pasture of the shady forestslopes he brought the herdsmen to meadows and ealings, and taught them to feed their flocks from sunrise to eventide. When the sheep strayed in strings with wandering hoof, lagging behind on ways they could not find or trust, to the flowery pasture, he joined them on one path sending a goat ahead to lead the concerted march. He invented Pan's pastoral tune on the mountains. He lulled asleep the scorching dogstar of Maira. He kindled the fragrant altar of Zeus Icmaios; he poured the bull's blood over the sweet libation, and the curious gifts of the gadabout bee which lay on the altar, filling his dainty cups with a posset mixt with honey. Father Zeus heard him; and honouring his son's son, he sent a counterblast of pestaverting winds to restrain Seirios with his fiery fevers. Still to this day the etesian winds from Zeus herald the sacrifice of Aristaios, and cool the land when the ripening vine grows in mottled clusters.
§ 5.280 This was he, the Ceian son of Phoibos, whom Eros escorted to the Aonian wedding. All the city wreathed in garlands was busy about the cattle-sacrifice, and the straightcut streets were all busy dancing. Before the gates of the bridal chamber the people twirled their reeling legs for the wedding; the women struck up a lovelysounding noise of melody, the Aonian hoboys tootled with the bridal pipes.
§ 5.287 Afterwards from the bed of Aristaios and Autonoe, arose Actaion. His passion was for the rocks; and having in him the blood of the Hunter, he took the mould of his huntsman father, and became a mountainranging servant of Artemis – no wonder that illfated Actaion learnt the practice of the chase, when he was born grandson to lionslaying Cyrene! Never a bear escaped him on the hills; not even the baneful eye of the lioness with young could make his heart flutter. Many a time he lay in wait for the panther, and laid low as she leapt on him high in air. Shepherd Pan would ever gaze at him over the bushes with wondering eyes, while he outstripped the running of the swift stag. But his running feet availed him nothing, his quiver helped him not, nor the straight shot, the cunning of the chase; but the Portioner (Moira) destroyed him, a scampering fawn worried by dogs, while still breathing battle after the Indian war. For as he sat up in a tall oak tree amid the spreading boughs, he had seen the whole body of the Archeress bathing; and gazing greedily on the goddess that none may see, he surveyed inch by inch the holy body of the unwedded virgin close at hand. A Naiad nymph unveiled espied him from afar with a sidelong look, as he stared with stolen glances on the unclothed shape of her queen, and shrieked in horror, telling her queen the wild daring of a lovesick man. Artemis half revealed caught up her dress and encircling shawl, and covered her modest breasts with the maiden zone in shame, and sank with gliding limbs into the water, until by little and little all her form was hidden.
§ 5.316 Actaion heavy-fated! At once your manly shape was gone – four feet had cloven hooves – long cheeks drew out on your jawbones – your legs became thinner – two long bunches of widebranching antlers curved over your forehead – a borrowed shape, its body all covered with hair, dappled every limb with motley spots – a windswift fawn had nothing of you left but the mind! With quickfaring leap of the hoof he ran through the unfriendly forest, a hunter in terror of hunters. But in this new shape his dogs no longer knew their former master. The angry Archeress in resentment maddened them with a nod – there was no escape; panting infuriated with wild frenzy, they sharpened the double row of their fawnkilling teeth, and deceived by the false appearance of a stag they devoured the dappled changeling body in senseless fury. But that was not all the goddess meant: the dogs were to tear Actaion slowly to pieces with their jaws little by little, while breathing still and in his right mind, that she might torment his mind even more with sharper pains. So he with a man's feeling groaned for his own fate, while he cried aloud in a lamentable voice:
§ 5.337 Happy Teiresias! You saw without destruction the naked body of Athena, reluctant but pitiful. You did not die! you did not get the shape of a stag, no poking horns raised themselves on your brow. You lost the light of your eyes, but you live! and the brilliancy of the eyes Athena transplanted to your mind. Archeress is more deadly in anger than Tritogeneia. O that she had given me a pain like that! O that she also had attacked the eyes, as Athena did! O that she had transformed my mind with my form – for I have the alien shape of a beast, yet a man's feeling is in me! Do beasts ever lament their own death? They live without thought, and know not their end. I alone keep a sensible mind perishing: I drop intelligent tears, under the brows of a beast! Now for the first time, my hounds, you are really wild; when before have you hunted a lion with frenzied leap like this!
§ 5.354 Sing a dirge for Actaion, my beloved hills! Yes I beseech you, and the beasts do the like! Cithairon, tell Autonoe what you know; with stony tears describe to Aristaios my father, my end and the maddened hounds unmerciful. O dreaded fate! With my own hands I fed my murderers! If only a hillranging lion had brought me low, if only a dappleback panther had dragged me and torn me, if only furious bears had pierced me about with sharp merciless claws, and feasted on the seeming fawn with flashing jaws, not my own familiar hounds had brought me down: no longer they know my shape, no longer the voice with a sound so strange!
§ 5.366 Half dead he spoke, and as he prayed, the cruel hound did not understand the prayers poured out in sorrow with the voice of a beast; the stories he told had meaning, but instead of a human voice, only a noise of unmeaning sound rang out.
§ 5.370 Already Rumour self born had flown from the hills to Autonoe, proclaiming her son's fate torn to pieces by his dogs: not indeed that he had donned the thickhaired shape of a stag, only that he was dead. His mother in her passionate love, unshot, unveiled, was scourged by grief. She tore her hair, she rent all her smock, she scored her cheeks with her nails in sorrow till they were red with blood; baring her bosom, she reddened the lifegiving round of the breasts which had nursed her children, in memory of her son; over her sorrowing face the tears ran in a ceaseless flood and drenched her robes. Actaion's hounds returning from the mountain confirmed the tidings of woe, for they revealed the young man's end by their silent tears. When the mother saw their mourning she wailed louder still. Old Cadmos shore off his hoary hair, Harmonia cried aloud; the whole house resounded heavybooming with the noise of women wailing in concert.
§ 5.388 Autonoe along with Aristaios her husband went in search of the scattered remains of the dead. She saw her son, but knew him not; she beheld the shape of a dappled deer and saw no aspect of a man. Often she passed the bones of a fawn unrecognized, lying on the ground, and did not understand; for her boy was dead, and she looked to find a human shape. I blame not unhappy Autonoe. The relics of her son which met her eyes were of alien shape; she noticed the jaws of a face unrecognized and did not see the circle of his countenance, touched horns and did not know a son's temples, found slim legs and did not trace his feet, saw slim legs and saw not the rounded boots. I blame not unhappy Autonoe; she saw not the human eyes of him that was gone, she saw no image of a manly shape, she saw no the well-known chin marked with the dark flower of bloom. Passing over the forest ridges with wandering feet, she trod the rough back of the rugged hill, unshod, with loosened robe, and returned home form the mountainranging task; grieving for her unsuccessful cares she fell asleep at last beside her husband, unhappy father! Both were haunted by shadowy dreams, their eyes glimpsing the wing of a nightingale sleep.
§ 5.412 The young man's ghost stood by his disconsolate father, wearing the shadowy form of a dappled stag; but from his eyelids he poured tears of understanding and spoke with a human voice: You sleep, my father, and you know not my fate. Wake, and recognize my unknown changeling looks; wake, and embrace the horn of a stag you love, kiss a wild beast with understanding, one born of Autonoe's womb! I whom you behold am that very one you brought up; you both see Actaion and hear Actaion's voice. If you desire to clasp your boy's hand and fingers, look at my forefeet and you shall know my hands. If you want my head, behold the head of a stag; if human temples, look at the long horns; if Actaion's feet, see the hindhoof. If you have seen my hairy coat, it was my clothing. Know your son, my father, whom Apollo did not save! Mourn your son, my father, whom Cithairon did not protect! Cover in the sad dust your boy in disguise, and be not misled by this changeling incredible aspect, that you may not leave your dead fawn unburied and unhonoured.
§ 5.432 Father, if you had only kept me unversed in hunting! I should never have desired the Archeress of the wilds, I should never have seen the Olympian shape. If only I had loved a mortal girl! But I left earthborn women and quickfated wedlock to others, and I desired an immortal: the goddess was angry, and I became a dinner for my dogs, father – the hills are my witnesses, or if you do not believe rocks, ask the Naiad nymphs – my trees know all, ask my wild beasts (with forms like mine) and the shepherds whom I summoned.
§ 5.442 I do beg, my father, for one last grace: they knew not what they did, so do not kill my slayers, in your love and sorrow for your child; pity those who slew your son, for they are not to blame – they did not mean it, they were misled by my beastlike looks to take me for a beast. What hound ever spares a stag? What man is angry with dogs for killing a fawn? How the poor creatures scamper about the hills all round, this way and that way, searching for the thing they have killed! They drop understanding tears from their eyes, and throw their forepaws round the nets with what might be an affectionate embrace, like sorrowing men, and weep over the place where I lie with mournful bellings. Yes, I pray you, do not kill the mourners! It was my face, but they saw only a hairy skin; they did not obey my prayers, they did not stay their teeth, because they heard only the bellow of my changeling voice, and in whimpering tones questioned my cliff – 'To-day someone has stolen Actaion: tell us, Rocks, whither he plies his pricketchasing course? Tell us, Nymphs!' So the gods; and the hill made answer, 'What hillranging pricket hunts the pricket himself? I never heard of a stag turned stagshooter! but Acation has changed into another shape and become a fawn with a mind, he who once killed the wild beasts – he who has the blood of the Hunter in him is hunted by a manslayer himself, by Archeress!' So shouted the cliffs to the sorrowful hounds. Often Artemis said to my hunting murderer, 'Down, heavylabouring hound! trace no more the wandering slot. Do you seek Actaion whom you carry in your belly? Do you seek Actaion whom you have killed? If you like, you shall see the orts of your meal, nothing but bones.'
§ 5.473 But I will tell you my fate, father, in due order. There was longleafy thicket, part of wild-olive, part of orchard olive. Like a fool I left Phylia's names-fellow growth and scrambled up a handy branch of the pure olive, to spy out the naked skin of Artemis – forbidden sight! I was mad – I committed two outrageous sins, when I climbed Pallas's tree to look on the Archeress's body with bold eyes; from which the danger of heavy resentment attacked Actaion, both from Artemis and from Athena. For Artemis newly sweating in the vapour of the oppressive fiery heat, after coursing her familiar game, was bathing in the pure water; and as she bathed, her brilliance shooting snowy gleams on the waters against my eyes dazzled me. You might have said the full moon of evening was flashing through the water near the refluent stream of Oceanos. The Naiads all shrieked together; Loxo cried aloud with Upis in concert, and checked her sister Hecaerge who was swimming in the calm stream. Darkness pervaded the air and covered my eyes; I slipt down from the tree headlong into the dust, and suddenly got me a dappled shape. Instead of human form I had a shape unknown, covered all over with hair, and the hunting-dogs all at once drove their fangs into me.
§ 5.497 But I will not speak of all that – why should I inflict a second pain? or I may cause you to groan again even in sleep. Often you passed that tree where lies what is left of Actaion; often you went by those pitiable bones of a dappled fawn, disjointed, scattered on the ground far apart, torn from the flesh by many eaters. But I will tell you another sign of my death which you will believe. You will see my quiver and bow near the tree where the trouble began, unless the winged arrows have been transformed also, unless Artemis in her anger has changed my bow back to its native wood and transformed the quiver. Otos was happy, that he became no wandering fawn. The dogs did not rend Orion the dogmaster. Would that a scorpion had killed Actaion also with a sharp sting! I was a fool – empty rumour deceived my mind. I heard that Phoibos, the Archeress's brother, slept with Cyrene and begat my father, and I thought to draw Artemis to marriage in the family. I heard again that shining Dawn carried off Orion for a bridegroom, and Selene Endymion, and Deo embraced a mortal husband Iasion, and I thought the Archeress's mind the same.
§ 5.520 I beg you, father, give burial to the changeling stronghorned shape, let it not be a toy for other dogs! And if you cover what is left of me in the hollowed earth, grant me this boon also: fix my bow and arrows beside my tomb, which is the honour due to the dead. But no, father, never mind bow and arrows, because the Archeress delights in shafts and bends a curving bow. And ask a skilful artist to carve my changeling dappled shape from neck to feet, but let him make only my face of human form, that all may recognize my shape as false. But do not inscribe my fate, father; for the wayfarer cannot shed a tear for fate and shape together.
§ 5.533 So spoke in the dream the intelligent pricket, and without warning it was flown and gone. Autonoe's husband leapt up, and threw off the wing of this revealing sleep. He aroused his wife much disturbed, and described her boy's stronghorned animal form, and recounted the story which the intelligent fawn had told. Then there was more lamentation. The bride of Aristaios went on the search again, and passed often through the heart of the longbranching bush; sadly treading the difficult circuits of the rocky ways, she found with pains that fatal growth, she found even the quiver and bow beside a lonely trunk. With much trouble the mother gathered the fallen relics, bones scattered here and there over the strewn earth. She clasped the sweet horn with loving hand, and kissed the hairy lips of the bloodstained fawn. Wailing loudly the mother entombed the dead, and carved along the tomb all that the voice in a dream of the night had told Actaion's father.
§ 5.552 At the time when mourning resounded in the hall of Aristaios, fairbosomed Agaue brought forth to Echion the Earthborn a bold god-assaulting son: he was named Pentheus, the man of sorrows, from the sorrow arising for the newly slain.
§ 5.556 After the bridals of Nephele of the earlier marriages, maiden Ino went with revels to the bridal chamber of Athamas. She bore Learchos destined to woe, and Melicertes. She was afterwards to find a home in the sea, as cherishing nurse for the childhood of Bromios: to both she gave one common breast, Palaimon and Dionysos.
§ 5.562 Semele was kept for a more brilliant union, for already Zeus ruling on high intended to make a new Dionysos grow up, a bullshaped copy of the older Dionysos; since he thought with regret of the ill-fated Zagreus. This was a son born to Zeus in the dragonbed by Persephoneia, the consort of the blackrobed king of the underworld; when Zeus put on a deceiving shape of many coils, as a gentle dragon twining around her in lovely curves, and ravished the maidenhood of unwedded Persephoneia; though she was hidden when all that dwelt in Olympos were bewitched by this one girl, rivals in love for the marriageable maid, and offered their dowers for an unsmirched bridal. Hermes had not yet gone to the bed of Peitho, and he offered his rod as a gift to adorn her chamber. Apollo produced his melodious harp as a marriage-gift. Ares brought spear and cuirass for the wedding, and shield as a bride-gift. Lemnian Hephaistos held out a curious necklace of many colours, newmade and breathing still of the furnace, poor hobbler! for he had already, though unwilling, rejected his former bride Aphrodite, when he spied her rioting with Ares; he displayed her to the Blessed and the womanthief who had robbed his bed, when by information from Phaethon he had entangled them in a spider's net, naked Ares with naked Aphrodite.
§ 5.586 And Father Zeus was much more bewitched by Persephoneia. When Zeus spied the virgin beauty of her shape, his eye ran ahead of him to guide all the Loes, and could not have enough of Persephone; in his heart storms of unsleeping passion raged without ceasing, and gradually a greater furnace of the Paphian was kindled from a small spark; the gaze of lovemaddened Zeus was enslaved by the lovely breast of the goddess. Once she was amusing herself with a resplendent bronze plate, which reflected her face like a judge of beauty; and she confirmed the image of her shape by this free voiceless herald, testing the unreal form in the shadow of the mirror, and smiling at the mimic likeness. Thus Persephone gazed in the selfgraved portrait of her face, and beheld the selfimpressed aspect of a false Persephoneia. Once in the scorching steam of thirsty heat, the girl would cease the loomtoiling labours of her shuttle at midday to shun the tread of the parching season, and wipe the running sweat from her face; she loosed the modest bodice which held her breast so tight, and moistened her skin with a refreshing bath, floating in the cool running stream, and left behind her threads fixt on the loom of Pallas.
§ 5.609 But she could not escape the allseeing eye of Zeus. He gazed at the whole body of Persephoneia, uncovered in her bath. Not so wild his desire had been for the Cyprian, when craving but not attaining he scattered his seed on the ground, and shot out the hot foam of love self-sown, where in the fruitful land of horned Cyprus flourished the two-coloured generation of wild creatures with horns. He – so mighty! the ruler of the universe, the charioteer of heaven, bowed his neck to desire – for all his greatness no thunderbolts, no lightnings helped him against Aphrodite in arms: he left the house of Hera, he refused the bed of Dione, he threw away the love of Deo, he fled from Themis, he deserted Leto – no charm was left for him but only in union with Persephoneia.
§ 6.1 BOOK 6
Look for marvels in the sixth, where in honouring Zagreus, all the settlements on the earth were drowned by Rainy Zeus.
Not the Father alone felt desire; but all that dwelt in Olympos had the same, struck by one bolt, and wooed for a union with Deo's divine daughter. Then Deo lost the brightness of her rosy face, her swelling heart was lashed by sorrows. She untied the fruitful frontlet from her head, and shook loose the long locks of hair over her neck, trembling for her girl; the cheeks of the goddess were moistened with self-running tears, in her sorrow that so many wooers had been stung with one fiery shot for a struggle of rival wooing, by maddening Eros, all contending together for their loves. From all the bounteous mother shrank, but specially she feared Hephaistos to be her daughter's lame bedfellow.
§ 6.15 She hastened with quick foot to the house of Astraios the god of prophecy; her hair flowed behind her unbraided and the clusters were shaking in the fitful winds. Eosphoros saw her and brought the news. Old Astraios heard it and arose; he had covered the surface of a table with dark dust, where he was describing in traced lines a circle with the tooth of his rounding tool, within which he inscribed a square in the dark ashes, and another figure with three equal sides and angles. He left all this, and rose and came towards the door to meet Demeter. As they hastened through the hall, Hesperos led Deo to a chair beside his father's seat; with equal affection the Winds, the sons of Astraios, welcomed the goddess with refreshing cups of nectar which was ready mixt in the bowl. But Deo refused to drink, being tipsy with Persephone's trouble: parents of an only child ever tremble for their beloved children.
§ 6.33 But Astraios was one of sweet words, who possessed mind-bewitching Persuasion, and with great pains he persuaded Deo to consent while still denying. Then the ancient prepared a great spread, that he might dispel Demeter's heart-piercing cares by his tables. The four Winds fitted aprons round their waists as their father's waiters. Euros held out the cups by the mixing-bowl and poured in the nectar, Notos had the water ready in his jug for the meal, Boreas brought the ambrosia and set it on the table, Zephyros fingering the notes of the hoboy made a tune on his reeds of spring-time – a womanish Wind this! Eosphoros plaited garlands of flowers in posies yet proud with the morning dew; Hesperos held aloft the torch which is wont to give light in the night, and spun about with dancing leg while he tossed high his curving foot – for he is the escort of the Loves, well practised in the skipping tracery of the bridal dance.
§ 6.50 After the banquet, as soon as the goddess had had enough of the dance, she threw off the heavy goad of mindmaddening care and inquired of the seer's art. She laid her left hand on the knees of the kindly ancient, and with her right touched his deepflowing beard in supplication. She recounted all her daughter's wooers and craved a comfortable oracle; for divinations can steal away anxieties by means of hopes to come.
§ 6.58 Nor did old Astraios refuse. He learnt the details of the day when her only child was new born, and the exact time and veritable course of the season which gave her birth; then he bent the turning fingers of his hands and measured the moving circle of the ever-recurring number counting from hand to hand in double exchange. He called a servant, and Asterion lifted a round revolving sphere, the shape of the sky, the image of the universe, and laid it upon the lid of a chest. Here the ancient got to work. He turned it upon its pivot, and directed his gaze round the circle of the Zodiac, scanning in this place and that planets and fixed stars. He rolled the pole about with push, and the counterfeit sky went rapidly round and round in mobile course with a perpetual movement, carrying the artificial stars about the axle set through the middle. Observing the sphere with a glance all round, the deity found that the Moon at the full was crossing the curved line of her conjunction, and the Sun was half through his course opposite the Moon moving at his central point under the earth; a pointed cone of darkness creeping from the earth into the air opposite to the Sun hid the whole Moon. Then when he heard the rivals for wedded love, he looked especially for Ares, and espied the wife-robber over the sunset house along with the evening star of the Cyprian. He found the portion called the Portion of the Parents under the Virgin's starry corn-ear; and round the Ear ran the light-bearing star of Cronides, father of rain.
§ 6.86 When he had noticed everything and reckoned the circuit of the stars, he put away the ever-revolving sphere in its roomy box, the sphere with its curious surface; and in answer to the goddess he mouthed out a triple oracle of prophetic sound: Fond mother Demeter, when the rays of the Moon are stolen under a shady cone and her light is gone, guard against a robber-bridegroom for Persephoneia, a secret ravisher of your unsmirched girl, if the threads of the Fates can be persuaded. You will see before marriage a false and secret bedfellow come unforeseen, a half-monster cunning-minded: since I perceive by the western point Ares the wife-stealer walking with the Paphian, and I notice the Dragon rising beside them both. But I proclaim you most happy: for you will be known for glorious fruits in the four quarters of the universe, because you shall bestow fruit on the barren soil; since the Virgin Astraia holds out her hand full of corn for the destined lot of your girl's parents.
§ 6.103 This said, he let the oracular voice sleep in his mouth. But when Demeter Sicklebearer heard the hope of coming fruits, and how one uninvited and unbetrothed was to ravish her beloved maiden girl, she groaned and smiled at once, and hastening by the paths of high heaven she entered her own house with despondent step. Then beside the dragon-manger she balanced the curved yoke over the two necks of the monsters, and fastened the untamed crawlers with the yokestrap, pressing their jaws about the crooktooth bit. So goldenbrown Deo in that grim car conveyed her girl hidden in a black veil of cloud. Boreas roared like thunder against the passage of the wagon, but she whistled him down with her monster-driving whip, guiding the light wings of the quick dragons as they sped horselike along the course of the wind, through the sky and round the back-reaching cape of the Libyan Ocean. She heard the music of the helmeted Cretan troop resounding in Dicte, as they danced about with the tumbling steel thundering heavy upon their oxhide shields. The goddess passed them by, looking for a stony harbourage; and she alighted among the Pelorian cliffs of Threepeak Sicily near the Adriatic shores, where the restless briny flood is driven towards the west and bends round like a sickle, bringing the current in a curve to southwest from the north. And in the place where that River had often bathed the maiden Cyane, pouring his water in fountain-showers as a bridegift, she saw a neighbouring grotto like a lofty hall crowned and concealed by a roof of stone, which nature had completed with a rocky gateway and a loom of stone tended by the neighbouring Nymphs.
§ 6.134 The goddess passed through the dark hall, and concealed her daughter well-secured in this hollow rock. Then she loosed the dragons from the winged car; one she placed by the jutting rock on the right of the door, one on the left beside the stone-pointed barrier of the entry, to protect Persephoneia unseen. There also she left Calligeneia, her own fond nurse, with her baskets, and all that cleverhand Pallas gives to make womankind sweat over their woolspinning. Then she left her rounded chariot for the Nymphs to watch, in their lonely home among the rocks, and cut the air with her feet.
§ 6.145 The girl busied herself in carding fleeces of wool under the sharp teeth of the iron comb. She packed the wool on the distaff, and the twirling spindle with many a twist and jerk ran round and round in dancing step, as the threads were spun and drawn through the fingers. She fixed the first threads of the warp which begins the cloth, and gave them a turn round the beam, moving from end to end to and fro with unresting feet. She wove away, plying the rod and pulling the bobbin along through the threads, while she sang over the cloth to her cousin Athena the clever Webster.
§ 6.155 Ah, maiden Persephoneia! You could not find how to escape your mating! No, a dragon was your mate, when Zeus changed his face and came, rolling in many a loving coil through the dark to the corner of the maiden's chamber, and shaking his hairy chaps: he lulled to sleep as he crept the eyes of those creatures of his own shape who guarded the door. He licked the girl's form gently with wooing lips. By this marriage with the heavenly dragon, the womb of Persephone swelled with living fruit, and she bore Zagreus the horned baby, who by himself climbed upon the heavenly throne of Zeus and brandished lightning in his little hand, and newly born, lifted and carried the thunderbolts in his tender fingers.
§ 6.169 But he did not hold the throne of Zeus for long. By the fierce resentment of implacable Hera, the Titans cunningly smeared their round faces with disguising chalk, and while he contemplated his changeling countenance reflected in a mirror they destroyed him with an infernal knife. There where his limbs had been cut piecemeal by the Titan steel, the end of his life was the beginning of a new life as Dionysos. He appeared in another shape, and changed into many forms: now young like crafty Cronides shaking the aegis-cape, now as ancient Cronos heavy-kneed, pouring rain. Sometimes he was a curiously formed baby, sometimes like a mad youth with the flower of the first down marking his rounded chin with black. Again, a mimic lion he uttered a horrible roar in furious rage form a wild snarling throat, as he lifted a neck shadowed by a thick mane, marking his body on both sides with the self-striking whip of a tail which flickered about over his hairy back. Next, he left the shape of a lion's looks and let out a ringing neigh, now like an unbroken horse that lifts his neck on high to shake out the imperious tooth of the bit, and rubbing, whitened his cheek with hoary foam. Sometimes he poured out a whistling hiss form his mouth, a curling horned serpent covered with scales, darting out his tongue from his gaping throat, and leaping upon the grim head of some Titan encircled his neck in snaky spiral coils. Then he left the shape of the restless crawler and became a tiger with gay stripes on his body; or again like a bull emitting a counterfeit roar from his mouth he butted the Titans with sharp horn. So he fought for his life, until Hera with jealous throat bellowed harshly through the air – that heavy-resentful stepmother! and the gates of Olympos rattled in echo to her jealous throat from high heaven. Then the bold bull collapsed: the murderers each eager for his turn with the knife chopt piecemeal the bull-shaped Dionysos.
§ 6.206 After the first Dionysos had been slaughtered, Father Zeus learnt the trick of the mirror with its reflected image. He attacked the mother of the Titans with avenging brand, and shut up the murderers of horned Dionysos within the gate of Tartaros: the trees blazed, the hair of suffering Earth was scorched with heat. He kindled the East: the dawnlands of Bactria blazed under blazing bolts, the Assyrian waves set afire the neighbouring Caspian Sea and the Indian mountains, the Red Sea rolled billows of flame and warmed Arabian Nereus. The opposite West also fiery Zeus blasted with his thunderbolt in love for his child; and under the foot of Zephyros the western brine half-burnt spat out a shining stream; the Northern ridges – even the surface of the frozen Northern Sea bubbled and burned: under the clime of snowy Aigoceros the Southern corner boiled with hotter sparks.
§ 6.224 Now Oceanos poured rivers of tears from his watery eyes, a libation of suppliant prayer. Then Zeus calmed his wrath at the sight of the scorched earth; he pitied her, and wished to wash with water the ashes of ruin and the fiery wounds of the land.
§ 6.229 The Rainy Zeus covered the whole sky with clouds and flooded all the earth. Zeus's heavenly trumpet bellowed with its thunderclaps, while all the stars moved in their appointed houses: ff when the Sun in his four-horse chariot drove shining over the Lion's back, his own house; the Moon of threefold form rolled in her onrunning car over the eightfoot Crab; Cypris in her equinoctial course under the dewy region had left the Ram's horn behind, and held her spring-time house in the heavenly Bull which knows no winter; the Sun's neighbour Ares possessed the Scorpion, harbinger of the Plow, encircled by the blazing Bull, and ogled Aphrodite opposite with a sidelong glance; Zeus of nightfall, the twelvemonth traveller who completes the lichtgang, was treading on the starry Fishes, having on his right he round-faced Moon in trine; Cronos passed through the showery back of Aigoceros drenched in the frosty light; round the bright Maiden, Hermes was poised on his pinions, because as a dispenser of justice he had Justice for his house.
§ 6.249 Now the barriers of the sevenzoned watery sky were opened, when Zeus poured down his showers. The mountain-torrents roared with fuller fountains of the loudsplashing gulf. The lakes, liquid daughters cut off from Oceanos, raised their surface. The fountains shot spouts of the lower water of Oceanos into the air. The cliffs were besprinkled, the dry thirsty hills were drenched as with rivers streaming over the heights: the sea rose until Nereids became Oreads on the hills over the woodland. O poor thing! Maid Echo had to swim with unpractised hands, and felt a new fear for that old maiden zone – Pan she had escaped, but she might be cause by Poseidon! Sea-lions now leaped with dripping limbs in the land-lions' cave among rocks they knew not, and in the depths of a mountain-torrent a stray boar met with a dolphin of the sea. Wild beasts and fishes navigated in common stormy floods that poured from the mountains. The many-footed squid dragged his many coils into the hills, and pounced on the hare. The dripping Tritons at the edge of a secret wood wagged their green forked tails against their flanks, and hid in the mountain vaults where Pan had his habitation, leaving their familiar speckled conchs to sail about with the winds. Nereus on his travels met rock-loving Pan on a submerged hill, the rock-dweller left his sea and changed it for the hill, leaving the waterlogged pan's-pipes that floated; while he took to the watery cave where Echo had sheltered.
§ 6.279 Then the bodies of poor fellows swollen in their watery death were buried in the waters. Heaps of corpses were floating one upon another carried along by the rolling currents; there fell the lion, there fell the boar into the roaring torrent, with open throat gulping draughts of the cascades that poured from rocks and mountains. With mingling streams, lakes and rivers, torrents of rain, waters of the sea were all combined together, and the four winds united their blasts in one, to flog the universal inundation.
§ 6.288 Earthshaker saw from the deep the earth all flooded, while Zeus alone with stronger push made it quake under his threatening torrents: he threw away his prongs, wondering in his anger what earth now he could heave with a trident! Nereids in battalions swam over the flooding waves; Thestis travelled over the water riding on the green hip of a Triton with broad beard; Agaue on a fish's back drove her pilotfish in the open air, and an exile dolphin with the water swirling round his neck lifted Doris and carried her along. A whale of the deep sea leaped about the hills and sought the cave of the earthbedded lioness.
§ 6.300 Then Pan well soaked saw Galateia swimming under a neighbouring wavebeaten rock, and sang out: Where are you going, Galateia? Have you given up sea for hills? Perhaps you are looking for the love-song of Cyclops? I pray you by the Paphian, and by your Polyphemos – you know the weight of desire, do not hide from me if you have noticed my mountainranging Echo swimming by you? Does she also sit on a dolphin of Aphrodite the sea-goddess, my own Echo navigating like Thetis unveiled? I fear the dangerous waves of the deep may have startled her! I fear the great flood may have covered her! How cruel for her, poor thing! She has left the hills and moves restless over the waves. Echo once the maid of the rocks will show herself as the maid of the waters. Come, leave your Polyphemos, the laggard! If you like, I will lift you upon my own back and save you. The roaring flood does not overwhelm me; if I like I can mount to the starry sky on my goatish feet!
§ 6.318 He spoke, and Galateia said in reply: My dear Pan, carry your own Echo through the waves – she knows nothing of the sea. Don't waste your time in asking me why I am going here this day. I have another and higher voyage which Rainy Zeus has found me. Let be the song of Cyclops, though it is sweet. I seek no more the Sicilian sea; I am terrified at this tremendous flood, and I care nothing for Polyphemos. With these words, she passed away from the lair of waterfaring Pan.
§ 6.326 As the irresistible torrent swelled on and on, every city, every nation was a flood; not one corner was undrenched, not one hill was then bare – not the peak of Ossa, not the top of Pelion. Under the three peaks roared the Tyrrhenian Sea; the Adriatic rocks rebounded with Sicilian waters in showers of foam from the flogging sea. The sparkling rays of Phaethon in his airy course became soft and womanish in the torrents. Selene in her seventh zone over the low rim of the earth cooled her light in the mounting waves, and checked her cattle with drenched and soaking necks. The rainwater mixed with the starry battalions, and made the Milky Way whiter with foam.
§ 6.339 The Nile, pouring his lifegiving stream through his seven mouths, went astray and met love-sick Alpheios. His wish was to creep through the fruitful soil, and delight his thirsty bride with watery kisses; but the other had lost the familiar road of his old-time hunt, and rolled along in sorrow, until seeing Pyramos the lover moving by his side he cried out and said – Nile, what am I to do? Arethusa is hidden! Pyramos, why this haste? You have left your companion Thisbe – to whom? Happy Euphrates! He has not felt the sting of love. Jealousy and fear possess me together. Perhaps Cronos's watery son has slept with lovely Arethusa! I fear he may have wooed your Thisbe in his flowings! Pyramos is a consolation of Alpheios. The rain of Zeus has not stirred us so much as the arrow of the Foamborn. Follow me the lover, I will seek the tracks of Syracusan Arethusa, and do you, Pramos, hunt for Thisbe.
§ 6.356 But you will say – the earth quakes, the sky attacks us, the sea compels us, the unnavigable upper air itself swells in a foaming flood! I care not for the wild deluge. See what a great miracle! The blazing earth, the flaming sea, the rivers – all have been swept clean by the downpour of Zeus, only one trifle it has not quenched, the Paphian fire of Alpheios! However, if the great flood confounds me, if I suffer from fire, there is one small medicine for my pain, that tender Adonis is wandering too and vexing Aphrodite.
§ 6.366 His tale was not yet ended, when fear conquered his voice. Then also Deucalion passed over the mounting flood, to navigate far out of reach on a sky-traversing voyage; and the course of his ark selfguided selfmoving, without sheet and without harbour, scored the stormy waters.
§ 6.371 Then the whole frame of the universe would have been unframed, then all-breeding Time would have dissolved the whole structure of the unsown generations of mankind: but by the divine ordination of Zeus, Poseidon Seabluehair with earthsplitting trident split the midmost peak of the Thessalian mountain, and dug a cleft through it by which the water ran sparkling down. Earth shook off the stormy flood which travelled so high, and showed herself risen again; the streams were driven into the deep hollows and the cliffs were laid bare. The sun poured his thirsty rays on the wet face of earth, and dried it; the water grew thick under the hotter beams, and he mud was dried again as before. Cities were fashioned by men with better skill and established upon stone foundations, palaces were built, and the streets of the new-founded cities were made strong for later generations of men. Nature laughed once more; the air once more was paddled by the wings of birds that flew in the winds.
§ 7.1 BOOK 7
The seventh sings of the hoary supplication of Time, and Semele, and the love of Zeus, and the furtive bed.
Already Eros, love's plowman, had plowed the seedless world, and mixt the man's seed of generation in the woman's furrow, with the fruit of everflowing life again renewed. Nature the nurse of the offspring took root again; earth mingling with fire and water interwoven with air shaped the human race with its fourfold bonds.
§ 7.7 But sorrow in many forms possessed he life of men, which begins with labour and never sees the end of care: and Time his everlasting companion showed to Zeus Almighty mankind, afflicted with suffering and having no portion in happiness of heart. For the Father had not yet cut the threads of childbirth and shot forth Bacchos from his pregnant thigh, to give mankind rest from their tribulations; not yet did the libation of wine soak the pathways of the air and make them drunken with sweetsmelling exhalations. The Seasons, those daughters of the lichtgang, still joyless, plaited garlands for the gods only of meadow-grass. For Wine was lacking. Without Bacchos to inspire the dance, its grace was only half complete and quite without profit; it charmed only the eyes of the company, when the circling dancer moved in twists and turns with a tumult of footsteps, having only nods for words, hand for mouth, fingers for voice.
§ 7.22 But Time the maniform, holding the key of generation, spread his white shock of hair over the knees of Zeus, let fall the flowing mass of his beard in supplication, and made his prayer, bowing his head to the ground, bending his neck, straining the whole length of his back; and as he knelt, the ancient of days, the shepherd of life ever-flowing, reached out his infinite hand and spoke:
§ 7.29 Lord Zeus! behold yourself the sorrows of a despairing world! Do you not see that Enyo has made the whole earth mad, mowing season by season her harvest of quick-perishing youth? We can yet see traces of that deluge which you brought upon all nations, when the streams of airy floods billowed in the air and boiled against the neighbouring Moon. Farewell to the life of men, since they perish so soon! I renounce the divine helm at their fate, I will no longer handle the world's cable. Let some other of the Blessed, one better than I am, receive the rudder of life ever renewed; let another have the course of my years – for I am weary of pitying the luckless race of suffering mankind. Is not old age enough, which blights youth, and makes a man go slow with bowed head, when bent and trembling he goes on his way with a foot too many, heavy of knee and leaning upon a staff, the faithful servant of age! Is not fate enough, who often hides in Lethe the young bridegroom, companion of an age-mate bride lately wed, and breaks the life-bringing cables of a union that cannot be broken! I know how delightful a marriage is when Athena's hoboy sounds along with the panspipes: nevertheless, what boots it, when the loud sound of the sevenchord harp is heard twanging near the bridal chamber? Lutes cannot comfort a heavy heart: but Eros himself stops the dance and throws away the bridal torch, if he sees a wedding without joy.
§ 7.55 But (some may say) a medicine has been planted to make long-suffering mortals forget their troubles, to save their lives. Would that Pandora had never opened the heavenly cover of that jar – she the sweet bane of mankind! Nay, Prometheus himself is the cause of man's misery – Prometheus who cares for poor mortals! Instead of fire which is the beginning of all evil he ought rather to have stolen sweet nectar, which rejoices the heart of the gods, and given that to men, that he might have scattered the sorrows of the world with your own drink. But never mind the cares of the tempest-tossed life, just consider your own ceremonials brought to sadness. Are you pleased at the empty vapour of the burnt-offering that strays without libation?
§ 7.67 When the ancient had ended, Zeus Allwise for a time turned over his infinite wisdom in thoughtful silence, and gave rein to his mind; one after another the meditations of that creative brain revolved before him; and at last Cronides addressed his divine voice to Time, and revealed oracles higher than the prophetic centre:
§ 7.73 O Father self-begotten, shepherd of the ever-flowing years! be not angry; the human race waxes and wanes like the moon, and never fails or forgets its season. Leave nectar to the Blessed; and I will give mankind to heal their sorrows delicious wine, another drink like nectar self-distilled, and one suited to mortals. The primeval world will sorrow still, until I be delivered of one child. I am father and mother both; I shall suffer the woman's pangs in my man's thigh, that I may save the fruit of my pangs. Yesterday at the nod of my Deo, lady of wide threshingfloors, the earth dug by the iron wooer of corn was delivered of the dry fruit of the sheafbearing soil. Now also my son, bringer of a glorious gift, shall plant in the earth the moist fragrant fruit of vintage the Allheal – my son Dionysos Alljoy will cherish the no-sorrow grape, and rival Demeter. Then you will commend me when you watch the vine reddening with wineteeming dew, herald of the merry heart; and the countrymen at the winepress treading the fruit with heavy feet; and the revelling company of Bassarids shaking their mad hair unkempt into the wind over their shoulders. Then all in wild jubilation will cry Euoi over the echoing table with mutual toasts, in honour of Dionysos the protector of the human race. This my son after struggles on earth, after the battle with the giants, after the Indian War, will be received by the bright upper air to shine beside Zeus and to share the courses of the stars. So the god shall wind a tendril of garden vines laid upon the bright ivy round his locks for his garland . . . having a serpent-coronet as a sign of new godhead. He shall have equal honour with the gods, and among men he shall be named Dionysos of the Vine, as Hermes is called Goldenrod, Ares Brazen, Apollo Farshooter.
§ 7.106 The Father spoke, the Portioners applauded; at his words the lightfoot Seasons sneezed, as a presage of things to come. Their parley done they separated, Time to Harmonia's house, the other to the fine-wrought chamber of Hera.
§ 7.110 Now Eros the wise, the self-taught, the manager of the ages, knocked at the gloomy gates of primeval Chaos. He took out the divine quiver, in which were kept apart twelve firefed arrows for Zeus, when his desire turned towards one or another of mortal women for a bride. Right on the back of his quiver of lovebolts he had engraved with letters of gold a sentence in verse for each:
The first takes Cronion to the bend of heifer-fronted Io.
The second shall Europa woo for the bold bull abducting.
The third to Pluto's bridal brings the lord of high Olympos.
The fourth shall call to Danae a golden bed-companion.
The fifth shall offer Semele a burning fiery wedding.
The sixth shall bring the King of heaven an eagle to Aigina.
The seventh joins Antiope to a pretended Satyr.
The eighth, a swan endowed with mind shall bring to naked Leda.
The ninth a noble stallion gives unto Perrhaibid Dia.
The tenth three fullmoon nights of bliss gives to Alcmena's bedmate.
The eleventh goes to carry out Laodameia's bridal.
The twelfth draws to Olympias her thrice-encircling husband.
§ 7.129 When Eros had seen and handled each in turn, he put back the other fire-barbed shafts, and taking the fifth he fitted it to the shining bowstring; but first he put a sprig of ivy on the barb of the winged arrow, to be a fitting chaplet for the god of the vine, and dipt the whole shaft in a bowl of nectar, that Bacchos might grow a nectareal vintage.
§ 7.136 While Eros was fluttering along to the house of Zeus, Semele also was out with the rosy morning, shaking the cracks of her silver whip while she drove her mules through the city; and the light straight track of her cartwheels only scratched the very top of the dust. She had brushed away from her eyes the oblivious wing of sleep, and sent her mind wandering after the image of a dream with riddling oracles. She thought she saw in a garden a tree with fair green leaves, laden with newgrown clusters of swelling fruit yet unripe, and drenched in the fostering dews of Zeus. Suddenly a flame fell through the air from heaven, and laid the whole tree flat, but did not touch its fruit; then a bird flying with outspread wings caught up the fruit half-grown, and carried it yet lacking full maturity to Cronion. The Father received it in his kindly bosom, and sewed it up in his thigh; then instead of the fruit, a bull-shaped figure of a man came forth complete over his loins. Semele was the tree!
§ 7.155 The girl leapt from her couch trembling, and told her father the terrifying tale of leafy dreams and fiery blast. King Cadmos was shaken when he heard of Semele's fireburnt tree, and that same morning he summoned the divine seer Teiresias son of Chariclo, and told him his daughter's fiery dreams. As soon as he heard the seer's inspired interpretation, the father sent his daughter to their familiar temple of Athena, and bade her sacrifice to thunderhurling Zeus a bull, the image of likehorned Lyaios, and a boar, vine-ravaging enemy of the vintage to come.
§ 7.166 Now the maiden went forth from the city to kindle the altar of Zeus Lord of Lightning. She stood by the victims and sprinkled her bosom with the blood; her body was drenched with blood, plentiful streams of blood soaked her hair, her clothes were crimsoned with drops from the bull. Then with robes discoloured she made her way along the meadow deep in rushes, beside Asopos the river of her birthplace, and plunged in his waters to wash clean the garments which ad been drenched and marked by the showers of blood.
§ 7.184 There the maiden cleansed her body, and naked with her attendants moved through the water with paddling hands; she kept her head stretched well above the stream unwetted, by the art she knew so well, under water to the hair and no farther, breasting the current and treading the water back with alternate feet.
§ 7.175 There she received a new dress, and mounting upon the neighbouring river-bank, by the eastern strand which belonged to Dionysos the Guardian Spirit, she shook off into the winds and waters all the terror of her dreams. Now without God she plunged into the water, but she was led to that river's flow by the prophetic Seasons.
§ 7.190 Nor did the allseeing eye of Zeus fail to see her: from the heights he turned the infinite circle of his vision upon the girl. At this moment Eros stood before the father, who watched her, and the inexorable archer drew in the air that bow which fosters life. The bowstring sparkled over the flower-decked shaft, and as the bow as drawn stretched back the poet-missile sounded the Bacchis strain. Zeus was the butt – for all his greatness he bowed his neck to Eros the nobody! And like a shooting star the shaft of love flew spinning into the heart of Zeus, with a bridal whistle, but swerving with a calculated twist it had just scratched his rounded thigh with its grooves – a foretaste of the birth to come. Then Cronion quickly turned the ye which was the channel of desire, and the love-charm flogged him into passion for the girl. At the sight of Semele, he leapt up, in wonder if it were Europa whom he saw on that bank a second time, his heart was troubled as if he felt again his Phoinician passion; for she had the same radiant shape, and on her face gleamed as born in her the brightness of her father's sister.
§ 7.210 Father Zeus now deceitfully changed his form, and in his love, before the due season, he flew above River Asopos, the father of a daughter, as an eagle with eye sharp-shining like the bird, as he were now presaging the winged bridal of Aigina. He left the sky, and approaching the bank of the near-flowing river he scanned the naked body of the girl with her lovely hair. For he was not content to see from afar; he wished to come near and examine all the pure white body of the maiden, though he could send that eye so great – such an eye! ranging to infinity all round about, surveying all the universe, yet he thought it not enough to look at one unwedded girl.
§ 7.222 Her rosy limbs made the dark water glow red; the stream became a lovely meadow gleaming with such Graces. An unveiled Naiad espying the nymph in wonder, cried out these words: Can it be that Cronos, after the first Cypris, again cut his father's loins with unmanning sickle, until the foam got a mind and made the water shape itself into a selfperfected birth, delivered a younger Aphrodite from the sea? Can it be that the river has rivalled the deep with a childbirth, and rolled a torrent of self-pregnant waves to bring forth another Cypris, not to be outdone by the sea? Can it be that one of the Muses has dived from neighbouring Helicon into my native water, and left another to take the honeydripping water of Pegasos the horse, or the stream of Olmeios! I spy a silverfooted maiden stretched under the streams of my river! I believe Selene bathes in the Aonian waves on her way to Endymion's bed on Latmos, the bed of a sleepless shepherd; but if she has prinked herself out for her sweet shepherd, what's the use of Asopos after the Ocean stream? And if she has a body white as the snows of heaven, what mark of the Moon has she? A team of mules unbridled and a mule-cart with silver wheels are there on the beach, but Selene knows not how to put mules to her yokestrap – she drives a team of bulls! Or if it is a goddess come down from heaven – I see a maiden's bright eyes sparkling under the quiet eyelids, and it must be Athena Brighteyes bathing, when she threw the skin back at him after the old victory over Teiresias. This girl looks like a divine being with her rosy arms; but if she was the glorious burden of a mortal womb, she is worthy of the heavenly bed of Cronion.
§ 7.255 So spoke the voice from under the swirling waters. But Zeus shaken by the firebarbed sting of desire watched the rosy fingers of the swimming girl. Unrestingly he moved his wandering glance, now gazing at the sparkling rosy face, now bright eyes as full as a cow's under the eyelids, now the hair floating on the breeze, and as the hair blew away he scanned the free neck of the unclad maid; but the bosom most of all and the naked breasts seemed to be armed against Cronides, volleying shafts of love. All her flesh he surveyed, only passed by the secrets of her lap unseen by his modest eyes. The mind of Zeus left the skies and crept down to swim beside swimming Semele. Enchanted he received the sweet maddening spark in a heart which knew it well. All father was worsted by a child: little Eros with his feeble shot set afire this Archer of Thunderbolts. Not the deluge of the flood, not the fiery lightning could help its possessor: that huge heavenly flame itself was vanquished by the small fire of unwarlike Paphia; little Eros faced the shaggy skin, his magical girdle faced the aegis; the heavy-booming din of the thunderclap was the slave of his lovebreeding quiver. The god was shaken by the heartbewitching sting of desire for Semele, in amazement: for love is near neighbour to admiration.
§ 7.280 Zeus could hardly get back to his imperial heaven, thinking over his plans, having now resumed his divine shape once more. He resolved to mount Semele's nightly couch, and turned his eye to the west, to see when sweet Hesperos would come. He blamed Phaethon that he should make the afternoon season so long, and uttered an impatient appeal with passionate lips:
§ 7.286 Tell me, laggard Night, when is envious Eos to set? It is time now for you to lift your torch and lead Zeus to his love – come now, foreshow the illumination of night-ranging Lyaios! Phaethon is jealous, he constrains me! Is he in love with Semele himself and grudges my desire? Helios, you plague me, though you know the madness of love. Why do you spare the whip when you touch up your slow team? I know another nightfall that came very quickly! If I like, I will hide you and the daughter of the mists together in my clouds, and when you are covered Night will appear in the daytime, to speed the marriage of Zeus in haste; the stars will shine at midday, and I will make rising Hesperos, instead of setting Hesperos, the regular usher of the loves. Come now, draw your own forerunner Phosphoros to his setting, and o grace to your desire and mine; enjoy your Clymene all night long, and let me go quick to Semele. Yoke your own car, I pray, bright Moon, send forth your rays which make the trees and plants to grow, because this marriage foretells the birth of plant-cherishing Dionysos; rise over the lovely roof of Semele, give light to my desire with the star of the Cyprian, make long the sweet darkness for the wooing of Zeus!
§ 7.308 Such was the speech of Zeus, even such commands as desire knows. But when in answer to his eagerness, a huge cone of darkness sprang up from the earth and ran stretching into the heights, bringing a shadow of darkness opposite to setting Eos, Zeus passed along the starry dome of the sky to Semele's bridal. Without leaving a trace of his footsteps, he traversed at his first bound the whole path of the air. With a second, like a wing or a thought, he reached Thebes; the bars of the palace door opened of themselves to let him through, and Semele was held fast in the loving bond of his arms.
§ 7.319 Now he leaned over the bed, with a horned head on human limbs, lowing with the voice of a bull, the very likeness of bullhorned Dionysos. Again, he put on a shaggy lion's form; or he was a panther, as one who begets a bold son, driver of panthers and charioteer of lions. Again, as a young bridegroom he bound his hair with coiling snakes and vine-leaves intertwined, and twisted purple ivy about his locks, the plaited ornament of Bacchos. A writhing serpent crawled over the trembling bride and licked her rosy neck with gentle lips, then slipping into her bosom girdled the circuit of her firm breasts, hissing a wedding tune, and sprinkled her with sweet honey of the swarming bees instead of the viper's deadly poison. Zeus made long wooing, and shouted Euoi! as if the winepress were near, as he begat his son who would love the cry. He pressed love-mad mouth to mouth, and beaded up delicious nectar, an intoxicating bedfellow for Semele, that she might bring forth a son to hold the sceptre of nectareal vintage. As a presage of things to come, he lifted the careforgetting grapes resting his laden arm on the firebringing fennel; or again, he lifted a thyrsus twined about with purple ivy, wearing a deerskin on his back – the lovesick wearer shook the dappled fawnskin with his left arm.
§ 7.344 All the earth laughed: a viny growth with self-sprouting leaves ran round Semele's bed; the walls budded with flowers like a dewy meadow, at the begetting of Bromios; Zeus lurking inside rattled his thunderclaps over the unclouded bed, foretelling the drums of Dionysos in the night. And after the bed, he saluted Semele with loving words, consoling his bride with hopes of things to come:
§ 7.352 My wife, I your bridegroom am Cronides. Lift up your neck in pride at this union with a heavenly bedfellow; and look not among mankind for any child higher than yours. Danae's wedding does not rival you. You have thrown into the shade even the union of your father's sister with her Bull; for Europa glorified by Zeus's bed went to Crete, Semele goes to Olympos. What more do you want after heaven and the starry sky? People will say in the future, Zeus gave honour to Minos in the underworld, and to Dionysos in the heavens! Then after Autonoe's mortal son and Ino's child – one downed by his dogs, one to be killed by a sonslaying father's winged arrow – after the shortlived son of mad Agaue, you bring forth a son who shall not die, and you I will call immortal. Happy woman! you have conceived a son who will make mortals forget their troubles, you shall bring forth joy for gods and men.
§ 8.1 BOOK 8
The eight has a changeful tale, the fierce jealousy of Hera, and Semele's fiery nuptials, and Zeus the slayer.
With these words Zeus returned to Olympos; but in the highroofed hall his mind still wandered near his bride, empassioned for Thebes more than for heaven. For to Cronides Semele's house was lovely heaven, and the quickfoot Seasons of Zeus became the attendants in the palace of Cadmos.
§ 8.6 By the espousal drop of the divine union Semele's body swelled laden with a heavy burden. In witness of the birth of garlandloving Dionysos she took delight in wreaths. She plaited into her flowerdecked hair the natural tendrils of the maddening ivy like a prophetess of the Bassarids, and provided for the nymphs who were soon to be born, the later title of the ivy. As she carried the heavy burden of the divinely conceived child, if some old shepherd made melody with his panspipes, and she heard the tune repeated by countryloving Echo near, clad in tunic alone she went rushing wildly out of the house. If the mountainranging tones of the double pipe was to be heard, she leapt up, and out of the lofty halls went shoeless, uncalled, to the lonely woods on the hills. If there was clashing of cymbals, she tripled with dancing foot and shuffled a sidelong shoe in winding paces. If she heard the bellow of a broadhorned bull, her throat bellowed mimicry of the creature in reply. Oft on some hillside pasture she sang with Pan in maddened voice, and played harmonious Echo to him; she answered the tones of the herdsman's pipe of horn by bending her steps to the dance, and the fruit of her womb (sensible, though yet unborn!) joined in his mother's dance as if he also were maddened by the pipes, and although only half-made sounded a self-taught echo of tune from within her. So in the burden of the manchilding womb grew the messenger of merryhearted cheer, that understanding baby; and round about the boy, Cronion's attendants the Seasons went their rounds about the sky.
§ 8.34 Now Envy, surveying the bed of lofty Zeus and Semele's labour in the divine birth, was jealous of Bacchos while yet in the womb, Envy self-tormenting, loveless, stung with his own poison. In that crafty heart he conceived a crooked plan. He put on the false image of a counterfeit Ares, with armour like his; he scored the front of the shield with a liquid of his own made from a poisonous flower, to imitate smears of blood. He dipt his deceitful fingers in vermilion dye, staining his hands with red stuff which pretended to be gore (which it resembled) from his slain enemies. He belched out from his throat through his horrible mouth a nine-thousand power roar, a man-breaking voice indeed! He provoked Athena with seductive whispers, and goaded jealous Hera yet more to wrath, and irritated them both; and these are the words he said:
§ 8.50 Find another bridegroom in the sky, Hera, yes another! for Semele has stolen yours! For her sake he renounces the sevenzoned sky and treads the bridal floor of sevengated Thebes! In your place he holds in his arms an earthly bride with child, and is happy! What has become of my mother's jealousy! Has even Hera's wrath become unmanned for this marriage with Semele? Where are the stings of your merciless gadfly? No heifer is now driven in seapanic over the deep – no herdsman Argus with a thick crop of eyes watches the latest bed of lecher Cronides?
§ 8.61 But what is this palace of Olympos to me? I will go down to earth, I will leave my father's heaven and live in my own Thrace, I will no longer look on at my unhappy mother's wrongs and Zeus the wife-spoiler! If he ever comes to my country because he wants a Bistonian girl, he shall know what Ares is like when he is angry. I will take my Titan-destroying deathdealing spear and chase womanmad Cronion out of Thrace! I will use the excuse that he drags this maiden to his bed, I will be avenger self-appointed of the bed where I was born, because he has frequented earthborn brides and filled the bespangled heavens with his loves!
§ 8.73 Goodbye Heaven – where mortals are at home! Shall I climb the pole? But Callisto circles about Olympos, and there shines the ring named after the highcrested Arcadian Bear. I hate the seven Pleiads in their courses – for in Olympos it irks me that Electra shows her light with Selene. Now why are you quiet? You persecuted Apollo in the womb of his mother Leto, and you leave Dionysos in peace? Hephaistos, you helped in the painful birth of Tritogeneia, and Zeus shall be his own midwife for the bastard son of a drab, more mighty still than Athena, and he shall produce him from his manly thigh – no need now for the pole-axe! Give place, Athena! Cease to cry up that rounded forehead as your birthbed! Dionysos puts into the shade the clever delivery of that teeming head! Sprung form a mortal stock, he shall be an Olympian like Athena, but self-delivered, and eclipsing the boast of Pallas the motherless.
§ 8.88 But I am ashamed myself far more, when some mortal man shall say: Zeus granted battles to Ares, and merry-hearted cheer to Dionysos.' Well, I will leave the sky to the bastard brats of Cronides, and quit the heavens a banished god. Let Istros with his frozen flood receive its homeless monarch, before I see Ganymedes come here to pour the wine, that long-haired cowdrover, first in Pergamos then domiciled in Olympos, usurping the untouched cup of heavenly Hebe; before I can see Semele and Bacchos denizens of Olympos, and Ariadne's crown translated to the stars to run its course with Helios, to travel with misty Dawn. There I will stay, that I may never behold the sea-monster, the sickle of Perseus, the figure of Andromeda, the glare of Gorgon Medusa, whom Cronides will establish in Olympos by and by.
§ 8.103 He spoke, and disquieted the mind of selfborn Athena, and the more increased the wrath of jealous Hera. Swift leapt up envy, and wagging his crooked knees passed on his sidelong roads through the lower air: he moved like smoke to human eyes and thoughts, arming his boggart's mind for deceit and mischief.
§ 8.109 Nor did the consort of Zeus abate her heavy anger. She stormed with flying shoe through the heaven bespangled with its pattern of shining stars, she coursed through innumerable cities with travelling foot, seeking if anywhere she could find Deceit the crafty one. But when high above Corybantian Dicte she beheld the childbed water of neighbouring Amnisos, the fickle deity met her there on the hills; for she was fond of the Cretans because they are always liars, and she used to stay by the false tomb of Zeus. About her hips was a Cydonian cincture, which contains all the cunning bewitchments of mankind: trickery with its many shifts, cajoling seduction, all the shapes of guile, perjury itself which flies on the winds of heaven.
§ 8.124 Then subtle-minded Hera began to coax wily Deceit with wily words, hoping to have revenge on her husband: Good greeting, lady of wily mind and wily snares! Not Hermes Hoaxthewits himself can outdo you with his plausible prattle-prattle! Lend me also that girdle of many colours, which Rheia once bound about her flanks when she deceived her husband! I bring no petrified shape for my Cronion, I do not trick my husband with a wily stone. No! a woman of the earth compels me – whose bed makes furious Ares declare that he will house in heaven no more! What do I profit by being a goddess immortal? A worthless mortal woman has taken my husband, whom Leto a goddess could not steal. Zeus and his rain did not sleep a second time with Danae; after the seals of the ironbound prison the bride went a-sailing and had to blame her golden wedding for her lovegift of the brine – her hutch sailing with her on the sea floated where the shifting winds did blow! After Crete the Olympian bull did not swim again, he did not see Europa after the bed; but Io was soaked in the wet, and swam with horns on her head plagued by the gadfly!
§ 8.144 Even the goddess did not have a smooth course for her wedding; she also, Leto herself, carried the unborn babe by many a turn and twist, while she gazed at the shifting slopes of many a floating island, and the flood of the inhospitable sea that never stood still. Hardly at last she espied the wild olive-tree which harboured her childbed. All that Leto suffered, and her mate could not help her; but for the bed of one shortlived mortal woman he has renounced the couch of Hera his heavenly sister.
§ 8.152 I am afraid Cronides, who is called my husband and brother, will banish me from heaven for a woman's bed, afraid he may make Semele queen of his Olympos! If you favour Zeus Cronion more than Hera, if you will not give me your all-bewitching girdle to bring back again to Olympos my wandering son, I will leave heaven because of their earthly marriage, I will go to the uttermost bounds of Oceanos and share the hearth of primeval Tethys; thence I will pass to the house of Harmonia and abide with Ophion. Come then, honour the mother of all, the bride of Zeus, and lend me the help of your girdle, that I may charm my runaway son furious Ares, to make heaven once more his home.
§ 8.165 When she had finished, the goddess replied with obedient words: Mother of Enyalios, bride first enthroned of Zeus! I will give my girdle and anything else you ask me; I obey, since you reign over the gods with Cronion. Receive this sash; bind it about your bosom, and you may bring back Ares to heaven. If you like, charm the mind of Zeus, and if it is necessary, charm Oceanos also from his anger. Zeus sovereign in the heights will leave his earthly loves and return selfbidden to heaven – he will change his mind by my guileful girdle. This one puts to shame the heartbewitching girdle of my Paphian!
§ 8.176 This said, the wily-minded deity was off under the wind, cleaving the air with flying shoe.
§ 8.178 Now Hera left the shield-beswingled cave of the Dictaean rock and the cavern where the goddess of childbirth was born, and came full of guile to Semele's chamber, puffing with jealousy. She made herself like a honeyvoiced old dame, like the loving nurse whom Agenor himself had chosen to care for his children, and made much of her – gave her a holding, found her a husband as if she had been his daughter; and she paid him back for his care, nursed Cadmos at her own breast and dandled baby Europa in her loving arms. This was what Hera looked like when she passed into the house, hating Semele and Cypris, and Dionysos who had not yet seen the light; and as she came to the chamber of the recent bridal, she turned face and eyes away to the opposite wall, that she might not see the bed of Zeus. She was led and seated on a chair by Semele's attendant Peisianassa, a maid of Tyrian race, and Thelxinoe spread the rugs over the gleaming seat. There sat the goddess close beside her, weaving her plot. She noticed how the girl carried a burden of ripening fruit; a birth which touched not yet the moon of delivery, but a pale cheek an the pallor of limbs once rosy told of a womb no longer sealed. As treacherous Hera sat, a simulated palsy passed over her false body, and the old neck bowed downwards, nodding over the bent shoulders. Scarce finding an excuse, she groaned aloud and wiped the well-feigned tear from her face, as she spoke her false words in heart-enchanting tone:
§ 8.207 Tell me, my queen, why are your cheeks so pale? where is your beauty? Who has grudged that loveliness and dimmed the red sparkling colours of your face, changed the roses to quickfading anemones? Why are you downcast and languishing? Have you heard yourself those insults which the people are shouting? Curse the tongue of women, from which all troubles come! Tell me who laid rough hands on your girdle – hide it not! Which of the gods has besmirched you, which has ravished your maidenhood?
§ 8.216 If Ares has wedded my girl in secret, if he has slept with Semele and neglected Aphrodite, let him come to your bed grasping his spear as a marriage-gift – your mother knows her begetter, the terrible warrior! If quickshoe Hermes has made merry bridal with you, if he has forgotten his own Peitho for Semele's beauty, let him bring you his rod to herald your wedding, or let him fit you with his own golden shoes as a gift worthy of your bed, that you too may be goldshod like Hera the bedfellow of Zeus! If handsome Apollo has come from heaven to be your husband, if he has forgotten Daphne because of his love for Semele, let him away with furtive guile, and come to your through the air drawn in his car by singing swans, and dancing delicately let him offer his harp as a gift for your favours, to show a trusty proof of the wedding! Cadmos will know that heavenly harp at sight, for he saw it, and heard the melodious tones, when it made music at his festal board for the wedding of Harmonia with a mortal.
§ 8.235 If Seabluehair went womanmad and forced you, preferring you to Melanippe the sage, sung by the poet, let him make merry in full view, and plant the prongs of his trident as a bridal gift before the gates of Cadmos; so let him bestow the same honour beside snakecherishing Dirce, as he gave to lionbreeding Lerna in the Argive country as a mark of his marriage with Amymone, where the place of the Lernaian nymph still bears the trident's name. But why do I call you the bedfellow of Earthshaker? What tokens have you of Poseidon's bed? Tyro was embraced in a flood by watery hands, when counterfeit Enipeus came with his deceitful bubbling stream.
§ 8.247 Or if as you say, Cronion is your bridegroom, let him come to your bed with amorous thunders, armed with bridal lightning, that people may say — Hera and Semele both have thunders in waiting for the bedchamber!' The consort of Zeus may be jealous, but she will not hurt you, for Ares your mother's father will not allow it. Europa is more happy than Semele, for a horned Zeus carried her on his back; the hoof of the lovestricken bull ran unwetted on the top of the water, and one so mighty was Love's boat. O what a great miracle! A maiden held the reins of him who holds the reins of heaven! I call Danae happier than Semele, for into her bosom Zeus poured a shower of gold from the roof, torrents of mad love in abundant showers! But that most blessed bride asked no gifts of gold; her lovegift was her whole husband. But let us be quiet, or your father Cadmos will hear.
§ 8.264 With these words Hera left the house, and the girl still in her grief, jealous of the inimitable state of Hera's marriage and unsatisfied with Cronion. Hera returned to heaven and went indoors. There beside the heavenly throne she saw the weapons of Zeus lying without their owner; and as if they could hear, she addressed them in friendly cajoling words: Dear Thunder, has Zeus my cloudgatherer deserted you too then? Who has stolen you again and left your owner naked? Thunder, you have been plundered! But Typhoeus has nothing to do with it. The same has happened to Hera, my comforter: Rainy Zeus ahs a bride to look after and neglects us both. The earth is no more sprinkled with showers: the downfall of rain has ceased, drought feeds on the plowland furrows and makes the crops worthless, the countryman speaks not more of Cloudy Zeus but Zeus Cloudless. My dear Lightnings, utter your fiery appeal to Cronion, call upon womanmad Zeus, my thunderbolts! Avenge the jealous pain of Hera, attend upon Semele's wedding! Let her pray for a wedding-gift and receive her own fiery destroyers!
§ 8.284 Such was the appeal of sorrowing Hera to the voiceless weapons, while the goddess was boiling with jealousy and fury.
§ 8.286 But Semele heavily fettered with this new distress for her temper, longed for the lightning to be the fiery escort of their loves; and she complained to Zeus, as the prayed for a show of fires about her bed like Hera: By Danae's opulent wooing I pray, grant me this grace, horned husband of Europa! for I dare not call you Semele's husband, when I have seen you only like a dream! Acrisios was more blessed than Cadmos; but I too should have been glad to see a wedding of gold, Zeus of the Rain, if the mother of Perseus had not first stolen that honour from thee. I should have been glad if you had carried me on your shoulders in the waters as a travelling bull, and my brother Polydoros like Cadmos could have hunted the robber of the wandering bride, Cronion who carried me. But what have I to do with wedlock in shape of a bull or a shower? I want no honour equal to some earthly bride. Leave Europa her bull, leave Danae her shower of gold: Hera's state is the only one I envy. If you hold me worthy of honour, deck out my chamber with your heavenly fire! Kindle a lovelight in the clouds, show incredulous Agaue the lightning as my lovegift. Let Autonoe in her room close by hear the thunderous tune of our attendant Loves, and tremble at the selfannouncing token of our unpublished marriage.
§ 8.310 Give it – let me embrace the dear flame and rejoice my heart, touching the lightning and handling the thunderbolts! Give me the bridal flame of your own chamber; every bride has torches to escort her in the marriage procession. Am I not worthy of your bridal thunderbolts, when I have the blood of Ares and your Aphrodite? How wretched I am! Semele's wedding has quickfading fire and earthly torches, – your Hera is a bride who grasps the thunderbolt and touches the lightning! Thunderhurling bridegroom! You go to Hera's bed in divine shape, illuminating your bride with bridal lightnings until the chamber shines with many lights – fiery Zeus! but to Semele you come as dragon or a bull. She hears for her love the heavy Olympian rolling boom – Semele hears the sham bellow of a false bull under a vague shadowy shape. Soundless, cloudless, Zeus comes to my bed: Cloudgatherer he mingles with Hera. Well may she hold up her head! My father shrinks from insults for a daughter unhappily married, hides in the corners of the house – your Cadmos! avoids the place where men tread, ashamed to show himself to his people, because all the people deride this secret union with you, and blame Semele for having a furtive bedmate.
§ 8.333 A fine wedding-fit you have found me – the sneers of women! The attendants about me slander me, and far above the rest I fear the rough tongue of this garrulous nurse. Remember who wove the wilywitted fate for Typhon, and brought back to you the stolen spark of your thunder! Show it to my father, who got it back, for old Cadmos demands of me a proof of your bed. Never yet have I seen the countenance of the true Cronion, never beheld the flashing gleam from his eyelids, or the rays from his face, or the lustrous beard! Your Olympian shape I have never seen, but I expect a panther or lion – I have seen no god as a husband. I see you something mortal, and I am to bring forth a god! Yet I heave heard of another fiery wedding: did not Helios embrace his bride Clymene with fiery nuptials?
§ 8.351 Father Zeus heard, and blamed the jealous Portioners, and pities Semele so soon to die; but he understood the scheming resentment of implacable Hera against Bacchos. Then he ordered Hermes to catch up his newborn son out of the thunderfire when it should strike Thyone. He spoke thus in answer to the highheaded girl: Wife, the jealous mind of Hera has deceived you by a trick. Do you really think, wife, that my thunders are gentle? Be patient until another time, for now you carry a child. Be patient until next time, and first bring forth my son. Do not demand from me the murderous fire before that birth. I had no lightning in my hand when I took Danae's maidenhood; no booming thunder, no thunderbolts celebrated my union with your Europa, the Tyrian bride; the Inachian heifer saw no flames: you alone, a mortal, demand from me what a goddess Leto did not ask.
§ 8.367 So he spoke, but he had no though of fighting against the threads of Fate. He passed from the bosom of the sky shooting fire, and Flashlightning Zeus the husband unwillingly fulfilled the prayer of his young wife. He danced into Semele's chamber, shaking in a reluctant hand the bridegift, those fires of thunder which were to destroy his bride. The chamber was lit up with the lightning, the fiery breath made Ismenos to glitter and all Thebes to twinkle.
§ 8.375 When Semele saw her fiery murderers, she held up a proud neck and said with lofty arrogance: I want no clearsounding cithern, I need no hoboy! Thunders are here for my panspipes of Zeus's love, this boom is my Olympian hoboy, the firebrands of my bridal are the flashes of heavenly lightning! I care not for common torches, my torches are thunderbolts! I am the consort of Cronion, Agaue is only Echion's. Let them call Autonoe Aristaios's wife. Ino's rival is only Nephele – Semele's is Hera! I was not the wife of Athamas, I was not the mother of Actaion the forester, so quickly killed and torn by dogs. I want no lesser harp, for Cithara the heavenly harp makes music for Semele's wedding!
§ 8.389 So she spoke in her pride, and would have grasped the deadly lightning in her own hands – she touched the destroying thunderbolts with daring palm, careless of Fate. Then Semele's wedding was her death, and in its celebration the Avenging Spirit made her bower serve for pyre and tomb. Zeus had no mercy; the breath of the bridal thunder with its fires of delivery burnt her all to ashes.
§ 8.396 Lightning was the midwife, thunder our Lady of childbed; the heavenly flames had mercy, and delivered Bacchos struggling from the mother's burning lap when the married life was withered by the mothermurdering flash; the thunders tempered their breath to bathe the babe, untimely born but unhurt. Semele saw her fiery end, and perished rejoicing in a childbearing death. In one bridal chamber could be seen Love, Eileithyia, and the Avengers together. So the babe half-grown, and his limbs washed with heavenly fire, was carried by Hermes to his father for the lying-in.
§ 8.407 Zeus was able to change the mind of jealous Hera, to calm and undo the savage threatending resentment which burdened her. Semele consumed by the fire he translated into the starry vault; he gave the mother of Bacchos a home in the sky among the heavenly inhabitants, as one of Hera's family, as daughter of Harmonia sprung from both Ares and Aphrodite. So her new body bathed in the purifying fire . . . she received the immortal life of the Olympians. Instead of Cadmos and the soil of earth, instead of Autonoe and Agaue, she found Artemis by her side, she had converse with Athena, she received the heavens as her wedding-gift, sitting at one table with Zeus and Hermaon and Ares and Cythereia.
§ 9.1 BOOK 9
Zeus the Father received Dionysos after he had broken out of his mother's fiery lap and leapt through the delivering thunders half-formed; he sewed him in his manly thigh, while he waited upon the light of the moon which was to bring him to birth. Then the hand of Cronides guiding the birth was his own midwife to the sewn-up child, by cutting the labouring threads in his pregnant thigh. So the rounded thigh in labour became female, and the boy too soon born was brought forth, but not in a mother's way, having passed from a mother's womb to a father's. No sooner had he peeped out by this divine delivery, than the childbed Seasons crowned him with an ivy-garland in presage of things to come; they wreathed the horned head of a bullshaped Dionysos with twining horned snakes under the flowers.
§ 9.16 Hermes Maia's son received him near the birthplace hill of Dracanon, and holding him in the crook of his arm flew through the air. He gave the newborn Lyaios a surname to suit his birth, and called him Dionysos, or Zeus-limp, because while he carried his burden lifted his foot with a limp from the weight of his thigh, and nysos in the Syracusan language means limping. So he dubbed Zeus newly delivered Eiraphiotes, or Father Botcher, because he had sewed up the baby in his breeding thigh.
§ 9.25 Thus Hermes carried upon his arm the little brother who had passed through one birth without a bath, and lay now without a tear, a baby with a good pair of horns like the Moon. He gave him in charge of the daughters of Lamos, river nymphs – the son of Zeus, the vineplanter. They received Bacchos into their arms; and each of them dropt the milky juice of her breast without pressing into his mouth. And the boy lay on his back unsleeping, and fixt his eye on the heaven above, or kicked at the air with his two feet one after the other in delight; he stared at the unfamiliar sky, and laughed in wonder to see his father's vault of stars.
§ 9.37 The consort of Zeus beheld the babe, and suffered torments. Through the wrath of resentful Hera, the daughters of Lamos were maddened by the lash of that divine mischiefmaker. In the house they attacked the servants, in the threeways they carved up the wayfaring man with alienslaying knife; they howled horribly, with violent convulsions they rolled the eyes in their disfigured faces; they scampered about this way and that way at the mercy of their wandering wits, running and skipping with restless feet, and the mad breezes made their wandering locks dance wildly into the air; the yellow shift round the bosom of each was whitened with drops of foam from the lips of the girls. Indeed they would have chopt up little Bacchos a baby still piecemeal in the distracted flood of their vagabond madness, had not Hermes come on the wing and stolen Bacchos again with a robber's untracked footsteps: the babe lately brought he caught up, and carried in his lifeprotecting bosom, until he brought him to the house where Ino had lately brought forth a son.
§ 9.55 She was nursing her boy Melicertes, lately born and a baby still, and held him in her arms with caressing hands; her swelling breasts dropt the dew of the bursting milk. The god spoke to her in friendly coaxing tones, and let pass a divine message from his prophetic throat:
§ 9.61 Madam, receive a new son; lay in your bosom the child of Semele your sister. Not the full blaze of the lightning destroyed him in her chamber; even the sparks of the thunderbolt which killed his mother did him no harm. Let the child be kept safe in a gloomy room, and let neither the Sun's eye by day nor the Moon's eye by night see him in your roofed hall. Cover him up, that jealous resentful Hera may never see him playing, though she is said to have eyes to see a bull. Receive your sister's boy, and you shall have from Cronion a reward for his nurture worthy of your pains. Happy are you among all the daughters of Cadmos! for already Semele has been brought low by a fiery bolt; Autonoe shall lie under the earth with her dead son, and Cithairon will set up one tomb for both; Agaue shall see the fate of Pentheus among the hills, and she shall touch his ashes all deceived. A sonslayer she shall be, and a banished woman, but you alone shall be proud; you shall inhabit the mighty sea and settle in Poseidon's house; in the brine like Thetis, like Galateia, your name shall be Ino of the Waters. Cithairon shall not hide you in the hollow earth, but you shall be one of the Nereids. Instead of Cadmos, you shall call Nereus father, with happier hopes. You shall ever live with Melicertes your immortal son as Leucothea, holding the key of clam waters, mistress of good voyaging next to Aiolos. The merchant seaman trusting in you shall have a fineweather voyage over the brine; he shall set up one altar for the Earthshaker and Melicertes, and do sacrifice to both together; Seabluehair shall accept Palaimon as guide for his coach of the sea.
§ 9.92 With these words Hermes was off into the sky unapproachable, twirling in the air the windswift soles of his shoes. And Ino was not disobedient. With loving care she held the motherless Bacchos in her nursing arm, and laying out the pair, the two children, upon it offered her two breasts to Palaimon and Dionysos. She gave the baby in charge to Mystis her attendant maid, Mystis the finehaired Sidonian, whom Cadmos had brought up from a girl to attend in Ino's chamber. She then took Bacchos away from those godfeeding breasts, and hid him from all eyes in a dark pit. But a brilliant light shone from his face, which declared of itself the offspring of Zeus: the gloomy walls of the house grew bright, and the light of unseen Dionysos hid the darkness. All night long Ino sat beside Bromios as he played. Often Melicertes jumped up with wavering steps and pressed his lips to pull at the other breast as he crawled close to Bacchos babbling Euoi!
§ 9.111 Mystis also nursed the god after her mistress's breast, watching by the side of Lyaios with sleepless eyes. The clever handmaid taught him the art that bears her name, the mystic rites of Dionysos in the night. She prepared the unsleeping worship for Lyaios, she first shook the rattle, and clanged the swinging cymbals with the resounding double bronze; she first kindled the nightdancing torch to a flame, and cried Euion to sleepless Dionysos; she first plucked the curving growth of ivy-clusters, and tied her flowing hair with a wreath of vine; she alone entwined the thyrsus with purple ivy, and wedged on the top of the clusters an iron spike, covered with leaves that it might not scratch Bacchos. She thought of fitting plates of bronze over the naked breast, and fawnskins over the hips. She taught Dionysos to play with the mystical casket teeming with sacred things of worship, and to use them as his childish toys. She first fastened about her body a belt of braided vipers, where a serpent coiling round the belt on both sides with encircling bonds was twisted into a snaky not.
§ 9.132 Here behind the many keys and seals of the palace allseeing Hera spied him with her infallible eyes, guarded by Mystis in that hidden corner of the house. Then she swore by the infernal water of after-avenging Styx, that she would drown the house of Ino in a flood of innumerable woes. Indeed she would have destroyed the son of Zeus; but Hermes caught him up and carried him to the wooded ridge where Cybele dwelt. Moving fast, Hera ran swiftshoe on quick feet from high heaven; but he was before her, and assumed the eternal shape of firstborn Phanes. Hera in respect for the most ancient of the gods, gave him place and bowed before the radiance of the deceiving face, not knowing the borrowed shape for a fraud. So Hermes passed over the mountain tract with quicker step then hers, carrying the horned child folded in his arms, and gave it to Rheia, nurse of lions, mother of Father Zeus, and said these few words toe the goddess mother of the greatest:
§ 9.149 Receive, goddess, a new son of your Zeus! He is to fight with the Indians, and when he has done with earth he will come into the starry sky, to the great joy of resentful Hera! Indeed it is not proper that Ino should be nurse to one whom Zeus brought forth. Let the mother of Zeus be nanny to Dionysos – mother of Zeus and nurse of her grandson!
§ 9.155 This said, Hermes rose quicknee to the sky, rounding his wings under the rushing breezes. There he put off the higher shape of selfborn Phanes and put on his own form again, leaving Bacchos to grow a second time in the Mother's nurture.
§ 9.160 The goddess took care of him; and while he was yet a boy, she set him to drive a car drawn by ravening lions. Within that godwelcoming courtyard, the tripping Corybants would surround Dionysos with their childcherishing dance, and clash their swords, and strike their shields with revounding steel in alternate movements, to conceal the growing boyhood of Dionysos; and as the boy listened to the fostering noise of the shields he grew up under the care of the Corybants like his father.
§ 9.169 At nine years old the youngster went a-hunting his game to the kill. He passed the coursing hare with feet quicker still; following after the strong pricket's speed, he would lift with childish hand the dappled fawn and carry it over his neck; he would hold lightly aloft stretched on his shoulders a bold fellstriped tiger unshackled, and brought in hand to show Rheia the cubs he had torn newborn from the dam's milky teats. He dragged horrible lions all alive, and clutching a couple of feet in each hand presented them to the Mother that she might yoke them to her car. Rheia looked on laughing with joy, and admired the manliness and doughty feats of young Dionysos; his father Cronion laughed when he saw with delighted eyes Iobacchos driving the grim lions.
§ 9.184 The time of boyhood just come, Euios draped furry tunics upon his body, and carried to cover his shoulders the dappled skin of a stag, imitating the sky spotted with stars. He drove lynxes to his stables in the Phrygian plain, and yoked speckled panthers to his cart as if to make it look the place where his father dwelt. Often he stood in the chariot of immortal Rheia, and held the flowing reins in his tenderskin hand, and checked the nimble team of galloping lions. The boldness of Zeus high and mighty grew in his heart, until he stretched his right hand to the snout of a mad she-bear and laid fearless fingers on the terrible jaws, playful fingers: gentle stood the beast, and left her mouth a slave of youthful Lyaios, and kissed Bacchos's fingers with rough kisses.
§ 9.200 Thus he grew up beside cliffloving Rheia, yet a boy in healthy youth, mountainbred. Circles of Pans among the rocks came about the dancebeating son of Thyone, skipping around the crags on shaggyknee legs and crying Euoi! to Bacchos; and the goatfoot hooves rattled in their capers, as they went round and round in the dance.
§ 9.206 And Semele in Olympos, with a breath of the thunderbolts still about her, lifted a proud neck and cried with haughty voice – Hera, you are ruined! Semele's son has beaten you! Zeus brought forth my son, he was the mother in my place! The father begot, the father brought forth his begotten. He brought forth a child from a makeshift womb of his own, and forced nature to change. Bacchos was stronger than Enyalios; your Ares he only begot, and never childed with his thigh! Thebes has eclipsed the glory of Ortygia! For Leto the divine was chased about, and brought forth Apollo on the sly; Leto brought forth Phoibos, Cronion had no labour for him; Maia brought forth Hermes, her husband did not deliver him; but my son was brought forth openly by his father. Here's a great miracle! See Dionysos in the arms of your own mother, he lies on that cherishing arm! The Dispenser of the eternal universe, the first sown Beginning of the gods, the Allmother, became a nurse for Bromios; she offered to infant Bacchos the breast which Zeus High and Mighty has sucked! What Cronides was ever in labour, what Rheia was ever nurse for your boy? But this Cybele who is called your mother brought forth Zeus and suckled Bacchos in the same lap! She dandled them both, the son and the father. No fatherless Hephaistos could rival Semele's child, none unbegotten of a father whom Hera brought forth by her own begetting – and now he limps about on an illmatched pair of feeble legs to hid his mother's bungling skill in childbirth! Maia was not quite like Semele; for her son, crafty, armed himself like Ares, and looking like him, deluded Hera until he sucked the milk of her breast. Give place to me all! for Semele alone had a husband, who got and groaned for the same child. Semele is happiest, because of her son: for my Dionysos will come without scheming into the company of the stars; he will dwell in his father's heaven, because he drew milk from the godnursing teat of that mighty goddess. He will come selfsummoned into the heavens; he needs not Hera's milk, for he has milked a nobler breast.
She spoke exulting even in the sky; but the angry consort of Zeus fell heavily in surprise upon the house of Athamas and scared Ino into flight. She still resented the childhood of Dionysos.
§ 9.247 Ino, unhappy wife, escaped from her chamber and fled, rushing unshod over the rough mountains and searching for a trace of Dionysos, but without tidings. The nymph wandered passing from hill to hill, until she entered the ravine of Delphian Pytho. At last after intolerable wanderings she turned her step into the dragonbreeding copse. She tore the shift from her naked breast in token of mourning, and roamed madly about: the shepherd trembled to hear her distracted lamentation in a language he did not know. Often she seized the serpent which coiled thrice around the divine tripod-seat, and wreathed it in spirals on her squalid hair, fastening the long tresses about the delicate head with a snaky ribbon. She drove away the maidens of the temple service: nor more libations, nor more public worship, no man of Delphi danced near the temple – the women were scourged with limbscoring tangles of longplaited ivy. The huntsmen who saw Ino running on the hills left the traps of string on their stakes and fled. The goatherd drove his goats under cover of a hole in the towering rocks; the old plowman as he drove the sweating oxen under the yoke shivered at Ino's leaps. The Pythian prophetess herself choked down the foreign sounds of the underworld voice and ran into the mountains, with her customary Panopeian laurel shaking upon her head: she plunged between the deepkneed peaks of the ravine, and took refuge in the Delphic cavern, in her fear of maddened Ino.
§ 9.275 But Apollo Allseeing did not miss the woman, as she went through the twinings and twistings of the open forest where she sojourned. He pitied her, and came quickly near the grove. Taking the shape of a man he approached Ino, and with gentle hands wreathed her head with leaves of clever laurel, and brought sleep upon her. Then he anointed with ambrosia the whole body of mourning Ino in her sleep, bathing her maddened limbs in the grief-assuaging drops. Long she remained there in the Parnassian wood, until the fourth lichtgang. Then she founded dances for Bacchos yet a young boy, hard by the rock of prophecy, by the oracle of Phoibos; with unsleeping torches the Corycian Bacchants followed their fragrant rites, and gathered healing drugs with their divine hands, and healed the woman of her madness.
§ 9.290 Meanwhile at the call of Athamas the servants had been scattered, hunting everywhere for Ino. The women wandered over the hills like her, passing by many a winding path in search of any footstep of their missing lady, who moved leaving neither trace nor tidings. The women wept and wailed, cruel nails tore the reddened cheeks, willing fingers attacked the rosy breasts. The house plunged in mourning and sorrow cried aloud, and sent the loud sound of lamentation through the city. Most of all the inventive mind of Mystis felt the hard oppression, for she had a double grief, when unhappy Ino was still lost with all her troubles to bear, and Dionysos was stolen away.
§ 9.302 However, Athamas did not mourn his afflicted bride. He forgot his fickle passion for untraced Ino, and after the bed of his first wife Nephele had given him two children, he sought the luxurious couch of deepbosomed Themisto, and took as a third wife the daughter of Hypseus – and thus threw off Ino's love. Once as he played prettily nurse-like to comfort Melicertes calling for papa, lifting and throwing him up and up in the air with high somersaults, when the boy cried for the milky teat, he offered his man's breast and made him forget his mother.
§ 9.312 From the bed of Athamas, Themisto bred two warrior sons, a sure defence against battle, Schoineus and Leucon, a fine new manly breed, the fruit of her first births. After these two, the mother bore twin offspring of one common birth, and nursed at her rich breast Porphyrion and Ptoios, boyish blossoms of foe-defying youth both beloved and of one gage: these boys Themisto herself destroyed in later days, like stepmother's children, believing them to be the twin offspring of Ino the glorious mother.
§ 10.1 BOOK 10
In the tenth also, you will see the madness of Athamas and Ino's flight, how she fled into the swell of the sea with newborn Melicertes.
So the murderous mother killed her sons in madness. Athamas their father, under the punishment which attested that he had beside his hearth Themisto the destroyer of her own offspring, was tormented by the maddening lash of Pan; he rushed among his flocks, and harried the innocent troops of woolly bleaters while he believed himself to be flogging his servants. One he lifted, thinking her to be his wedded wife – it was a nannygoat he found, with a pair of newborn kids at her milky udder. He tied her hairy legs tight with two ropes; and undoing the belt that ran round his loins, he flogged the body of the false Ino there held fast, without noticing the changeling form, for always in his ear sounded the thuds of the lash of Cronian Pan. Often he leapt from his seat restless, hearing with terrified ears the hiss of serpents. Many a time he bent his bow, and setting an arrow to the drawn string, he drew at an imaginary mark and struck the unwounded air. He would see the serpentine image of the goddess of Tartaros, and leap up scared at the many-coloured vision of the spectre, spitting snowy foam to witness his frenzy, rolling eyes drunken and full of threats. His eyes grew bloodshot as he stared about under vagrant impulses; inside his wagging head the flimsy brains rolled about behind his brows.
§ 10.25 A third part of his soul was lost; steady thoughts were gone from his crazy brain; the glances of the maddened man went wildly round with flickering movements; the hair of his untended head shook disordered over his back. His mouth moved stammering; when he opened his lips he sent out into the air meaningless words of strange outlandish sound. The blasts of the Eumenides had carried away the troubles of mortal life, and his tongue was laden with the cries of madness. When he moved his face about he saw as his forehead turned a false transformed shape of the unseen Megaira. So the madman shook with a distracted spasm, and tried to tear the whip of snakes from the grim hand of the reason-destroying goddess; he bared his sword in the face of the Avenger, and tried to cut the viper-curls of Tisiphone. And he babbled nonsense to the wall before him, for he saw a shadow-shape, a deceitful phantom of the shape of Artemis; this empty form his eyes beheld and the imitated shapes made him want to go hunting.
§ 10.45 At last after the fourth year, after many tears, Ino returned to her home; but when the wife saw husband mad, and Themisto mother of men children, she received a double shock. The husband did not know his wife when he saw Ino, recovered after so long a time; but in his passion for the staghunting chase, he was off to the heights nimbleknee with stormswift boot. He saw his son as if he were an antlered beast; holding the bow ready bent he leapt unchecked on Learchos, whom he saw in the false form of a stag with lofty antlers, his limbs like a wild beast. The boy fled in fear running with quicker knees; the father with frenzied hands drew and shot through the air, and stopt his young son with childslaying bolt. He cut off the head with his knife and knew it not, turned stag by his fancy; laughing he felt the hair at the top of the bloodstained cheek of the face unmarked, and pawed over his game, as he thought, then rushed with mad leaps and rolling eyes to find the mother, while the boy Learchos was gasping still, and still unburied. None of the servants came near him; with quick foot he went wandering through the seven chambers of his house, calling aloud for the son whom he had killed. In the hall he espied little Melicertes who had just been brought in, and setting a cauldron over the hearth, a steaming cauldron, he laid his son in it: the fire blazed up, the murderous cauldron bubbled with boiling water.
§ 10.72 His son called out for papa! but none of the servants could help. Ino his mother came in like a stormwind, and snatched him from the cauldron parboiled and half consumed. Then she ran out bounding with wild-roaming feet swift as the wind; she traversed the dust of the White Plain, and for that reason she was named after it Leucothea, the White Goddess.
§ 10.77 Athamas mad was out of the hall, stirring his knees like the wind and pursuing Ino over the hills in vain, – she was too quick for him. But when the raving husband with restless staggering foot caught her up, at that moment the unhappy woman had halted by the sea which washed her foot, moaning in plaintive tones over her crying child, while she upbraided Cronion and Maia's son his messenger:
§ 10.85 A fine reward you have given me, Flashthunderbolt, for the care of Bacchos! See this boy, Lyaios' age-mate, half burnt to death! If it please you, strike down with your merciless bolt mother and son together, the little one I nursed in one bosom with your divine Dionysos! Child, Necessity is a great god! – where will you flee? What mountain will receive you, now you have fled to the sea? What Cithairon will hide you in a dark hollow? What mortal man will pity you, when your father has no mercy? Either sword or water shall receive you: if needs must, better to perish in the sea than by the sword.
§ 10.96 I know where this disaster came from, rolling upon your mother: I know! It is Nephele sends the Erinyes after me, that I may die in this sea where maiden Helle fell. I have heard that Phrixos was carried through the air to the Colchian country, guiding aloft the Ram who took him off, and he still lives in a distant land. O that my son Melicertes too might escape to another country, and travel the high path of the goldfleece ram! O that Poseidon, the hospitable friend of Glaucos, might save you, pitying your Ino as once he pitied Phoibos! I fear that after the fate of unburied Learchos I may see you also dead, unburied, unwept, undone, panting under the bloody knife of your father. Make haste! escape from mad Athamas, and then you will not see the father who murdered his child, murder the mother.
§ 10.111 Receive me you too, O sea! I have done with earth. Receive Melicertes also with hospitable hand, O Nereus, as you received Perseus! Receive Ino, as once Danae in her floating hutch! I have been justly punished for my impiety. As I made seedless the earth's lifegiving furrow, so Cronion has made my family seedless. A kind of stepmother, I planned to mow down the bastard plants of Athamas, and Hera, the real stepmother of newly nurtured Dionysos, is angry with me.
§ 10.120 She spoke, and with trembling feet sprang into the sea, swiftly diving with her son. Seabluehair opened his arms to receive Leucothea, and took her into the divine company in the deep waters. She helps ever sine the seamen who lose their way, and now she is Ino of the Sea, a Nereid who has charge of untumultuous calm.
§ 10.126 So Cronides pointed her out to the mother of Lyaios, because she owed it to Bromios that she was a goddess. Semele in her joy addressed her seafaring sister in mockery: Ino, you have the sea, Semele has gained the round heavens! Give me place! I had an immortal husband in Cronides the plower of my field, who brought forth the fruit of my birth instead of me; but you were wedded to a mortal mate Athamas, the murderer of your family. Your son's lot is the sea, but my son will come to the house of Zeus to dwell in the sky. I will not compass heavenly Dionysos with Melicertes down in the water!
§ 10.139 Meanwhile Dionysos, in the latitude of Lydia's fields, grew into a youthful bloom as tall as he wished, shaking the Euian gear of Cybeleid Rheia. To escape the midday lash of Helios moving on high, he cleansed his body in the stream of the Meionian River bubbling gently; Pactolos glad to gratify Lyaios murmured as he poured the goldsowing water upon the purple sands, and the gilded fish went swimming in wealthy soundings where the rich ore lay deep. Playful Satyrs lifted their heels in air, and tumbled plunging headover into the river; one selfpropelled swam with paddling hands prone on the waves, and imprinted a footstep on the swell, as he pushed with backstretching legs and cut the water rolling in riches; one dived deep down in to the underwater caves and hunted for speckled fishy prey down below, stretching a groping hand over the swimming fry – left the deeps again and offered to Bacchos the fish purpled with the slime of the opulent river. Seilenos the old vagabond, challenging a Satyr, entwined hands and feet together, and rolling himself into a ball stooped and dived head first into the stream, from the heights into the deeps, till his hair stuck in the slime; then he trod his two feet firmly into the glittering sand hunting for good nuggets of ore in the river. Another left shoulder unwetted and showed his back out of the water in the air as he stood in the deep stream over the hips, immovable. Another lifted the ears bare and plunged the shaggy thighs in the transparent flood, while the tail flogged the water in circles of its own.
§ 10.169 The god lifting his head and spreading his chest, paddled his hand and cut the golden calm. The banks free of waves spirted up self-growing roses, the lily sprouted, the Seasons crowned the shores while Bacchos bathed, and the flowing locks of his dark hair were reddened in the sparkling stream.
§ 10.175 Once while hunting in the shady lurking wood he was delighted by the rosy form of a young comrade. For Ampelos was a merry boy who had grown up already on the Phrygian hills, a new sprout of the Loves. No dainty bloom was yet on a reddening chin, no down yet marked the snowy circles of his cheeks, the golden flower of youth: curling clusters of hair ran loose behind over his silvery-glistering shoulders, and floated in the whispering wind that lifted them with its breath. As the hair blew aside the neck showed above rising bare in the middle. Unshadowed light flashed from him, like the shining moon when she pierces a damp cloud and shows within it. From his rosy lips escaped a voice breathing honey. Spring itself shone from his limbs; where his silvery foot stept the meadow blushed with roses; if he turned his eyes, the gleam of the bright eyeballs as soft a s a cow's eye was like the light of the full moon.
§ 10.193 Dionysos took him as playmate in his dainty sports. Then in admiration of his beauty he spoke to him as a man, artfully concealing his divine nature, and asked him: What father begat you? What immortal womb brought you forth? Which of the Graces gave you birth? What handsome Apollo made you? Tell me, my friend, do not hide your kin. If you come another Eros, unwinged, without arrows, without quiver, which of the Blessed slept with Aphrodite and bred you? But indeed I Tremble to name Cypris as your mother, for I would not call Hephaistos or Ares your father. Of if you are the one they call Hermes come from the sky, show me your light wings, and the lively soles of your shoes. How is it you wear the hair uncut falling along your neck? Can you be Phoibos himself come to me without harp, without bow, Phoibos shaking the locks of his unshorn hair unbound! If Cronides begat me, and you are from a mortal stock, if you have the shortliving blood of the horned Satyrs, be king at my side, a mortal with a god; for your looks will not disgrace the heavenly blood of Lyaios. But why do I call you one of the creatures of a day? I recognize your blood even if you wish to hide it; Selene slept with Helios and brought you to birth wholly like the gracious Narcissos; for you have a like heavenly beauty, the image of horned Selene.
§ 10.217 So he spoke, and the youth was delighted with his words, and proud that he surpassed the beauty of his young age-mates by a more brilliant display. And in the mountain coppice if the boy made melody Bacchos listened with pleasure; no smile was on his face if the boy stayed away. If at his caperloving board a Satyr beat the drums with his hands and struck out his rattling tune, while they boy was away on stag-hunting quest, Bacchos refused the doubled sound so long as he was not there. If ever he lingered by the flowery stream of Pactolos, that he might bring himself sweeter water for the supper of his king, Bacchos was lashed with trouble so long as the boy stayed away.
§ 10.230 If he took up the bold hoboy, the instrument of Libyan Echo, and blew a light breath with swollen cheek, Bacchos thought he heard the Mygdonian flotist whom divine Hyagnis begat, who to his cost challenged Phoibos as he pressed the fingerholes on Athena's double pipe. If he sat with the young man at one table, when the boy spoke he lent delighted ear, when he ceased, melancholy spread over his cheeks. If Ampelos, carried away by wild passion for high capers, twirled with dancing paces and joined hands with a sporting Satyr in the round, stepping across foot over foot, Bacchos looked on shaken with envious feeling. If he ever conversed with the Satyrs, if he joined with a yearsmate hunter to follow chase, Dionysos jealous held him back, lest another be struck like himself with a heartbewitching shaft, and now enslaved by love should seduce the fickle boy's fancy and estrange the lovely youth from Lyaios, as a freshblooming boy might well charm a comrade of his own age.
§ 10.250 When Bacchos lifted his thyrsus against a maddened bear, or cast his stout fennel javelin-like at a lioness, he looked aside watchfully toward the west; for fear the deathbringing breath of Zephyros might blow again, as it did once before when the bitter blast killed a young man while it turned the hurtling quoit against Hyacinthos. He feared Cronides might suddenly appear over Tmolos as a love-bird on amorous wing unapproachable, carrying off the boy with harmless talons into the air, as once he did the Trojan boy to serve his cups. He feared also the lovestricken ruler of the sea, that as once he took up Tantalides in his golden car, so now he might drive a winged wagon coursing through the air and ravish Ampelos – the Earthshaker mad with love!
§ 10.264 He had a sweet dream on his dreambreeding bed, beheld the shadowy phantom of a counterfeit shape and whispered loving words to the mocking vision of the boy. If his passionate gaze saw any blemish, this appeared lovely to lovesick Dionysos, even more dear than the whole young body; if the end of the tail which grew on him hung slack by his loins, this was sweeter than honey to Bacchos. Matted hair on an unkempt head even so gave more pleasure to his impassioned gaze. By day he was charmed to be with him; when night came he was troubled to part from him, when he no longer heard the familiar voice enchanting his hears, as he slept in the grotto of Rheia mother of mighty sons.
§ 10.278 A Satyr saw the boy, and enchanted with his divine beauty he whispered, concealing his words – Allfriendly Persuasion, manager of the human heart! Grant only that this lovely boy be gracious to me! If I can have him to play with me like Bacchos, I wish not to be translated into the sky, I would not be a god – not Phaethon the light of mankind, I covert not the nectar, I want no ambrosia! I care nothing, if Ampelos loves me, even if Cronion hates me!
§ 10.287 So much he said to himself in envious tone, hugging the lovepoison in his heart, drunk with the magic potion of adoration. But Euios himself, periced by the sting of the young man's sweetness, smiled as he cried out to Cronides his father, another unhappy lover:
§ 10.292 Grant one grace to me the lover, O Phrygian Zeus! When I was a little one, Rheia who is still my nurse told me that you gave lightning to Zagreus, the first Dionysos, before he could speak plain – gave him your fiery lance and rattling thunder and showers of rain out of the sky, and he was another Rainy Zeus while yet a babbling baby! But I do not ask the heavenly fire of your lightning, nor the cloud, nor the thunderclap. If it please you, give fiery Hephaistos the spark of your thunderbolt; let Ares have a corselet of your clouds to cover his chest with; give the pouring rainshower of Zeus as largess to Hermaon; let Apollo, if you will, wield his father's lightning. My ambition is not so high, dear father! I am springheel Dionysos! A fine thing it would be for me to wield Semele's manikin lightning! The sparks of thunderbolt that killed my mother are no pleasure to me. Maeonia is my dwelling-place; what is the sky to Dionysos? My Satyr's beauty is dearer to me than Olympos. Tell me, father, do not hide it, swear by your own young friend – when you were an Eagle, when you picked up the boy on the slopes of Teucrian Ida with greedy gentle claw, and brought him to heaven, had the clown such beauty as this, when you made him one of the heavenly table still smelling of the byre? Forgive me, Father Longwing! Don't talk to me of your Trojan winepourer, the servant of your cups. Lovely Ampelos outshines Ganymedes, he has a brilliancy in his countenance more radiant – the Tmolian beasts the Idaian! There are plenty more beautiful lads in troops – court them all if you like, and leave one boy to Lyaios!
§ 10.321 So he spoke, shaken by the sting of desire. Not Apollo in the thick Magnesian woods, when he was herdsman to Admetos and tended his cattle, was pierced by the sweet sting of love for a winsome boy, as Bacchos rejoiced in heart sporting with the youth. Both played in the woods together, now throwing the thyrsus to travel through the air, now on some unshaded flat, or again they tramped the rocks hunting the hillbred lion's cubs. Sometimes alone on a deserted bank, they played on the sands of a pebbly river and had a wrestling-bout in friendly sport; no tripod was their prize, no flowergraven cauldron lay ready for the victory, no horses from the grass, but a double pipe of love with clearsounding notes. It was a delightsome strife for both, for mad Love stood between them, a winged Hermes in the Ring, wreathing a lovegarland of daffodil and iris.
§ 10.339 Both stood forward as love's athletes. They joined their palms garlandwise over each other's back, packed at the waist with a knot of the hands, squeezed the ribs tight with the muscles of their two forearms, lifted each other from the ground alternately. Bacchos was in heaven amid this honeysweet wrestling, and love gave him a double joy, lifting and lifted . . . Ampelos enclosed the wrist of Bromios in his palm, then joining hands and tightening that intruding grip interlaced his fingers and brought them together in a double knot, squeezing the right hand of willing Dionysos. Next Bacchos ran his two hands round the young man's waist squeezing his body with a loving grip, and lifted Ampelos high; but the other kicked Bromios neatly behind the knee; and Euios laughing merrily at the blow from his young comrade's tender foot, let himself fall on his back in the dust. Thus while Bacchos lay willingly on the ground the boy sat across his naked belly, and Bacchos in delight lay stretched at full length on the ground sustaining the sweet burden on his paunch. Now raising on of his legs he set the sole of the foot firmly upon the sand and raised his overturned back; but he showed mercy in his strength, as with a rival movement of a reluctant hand he dislodged the beloved burden. The young man, no novice at the game, turned sideways and rested his elbow on the ground, then jumped across on his adversary's back, then over his flanks with a foot behind one knee and another set on the other ankle he encircled the waist with a double bond and squeezed the ribs and pressed flat and straight out the lifted leg under his knee. Both rolled in the dust, and the sweat poured out to tell that they were tired.
§ 10.373 Thus Dionysos was conquered with his own consent, like his father as an athlete, who was conquered at last though invincible: for mighty Zeus himself, wrestling with Heracles beside the Alpheios, bent willing knees and fell of his own accord.
§ 10.378 So ended the playful bout: the young man held out a happy hand and lifted his prize, the double pipes. He cleansed the sweat from his limbs in the river and washed off the damp dust; as he bathed, a pleasant brightness shone from the sweating skin.
§ 10.383 After the victory in wrestling strong-in-the-limb, Bacchos did not cease his games with his young comrade, but proposed a windswift contest of footrunning. To bring in other fleet wooers of the game for love, he offered for the first, Cybelid Rheia's instruments as a prize, bronzeplated cymbals and the speckled skins of fawns. The second prize for victory was Pan's comrade, – panspipes sweet utterance, and a resounding tomtom in a heavy bronze frame. For the third in his games, Dionysos offered ruddy sand from the river so ready and willing.
§ 10.393 Then Bromios measured the ground for the furlong race. He measured the stretch between the two ends of the course, and set up a tall stake in the ground, ten palms high, to make the finish of the race; at the other end he raised and planted a thyrsus on the river-bank to show the turning-point. Then he urged the Satyrs to go in and win.
§ 10.399 Springheel Lyaios cried his summons aloud, and first up leapt windfoot Leneus, then on either side of him highstepping Cissos and charming Ampelos stood up. They stood in a row, confident in the quick soles of their straightfaring feet. Cissos flew with stormy movement of his feet just skimming the top of the ground as he touched it. Leneus was running behind him quick as the winds of heaven and warming the back of the sprinter with his breath, close behind the leader, and he touched footstep with footstep on the dust as it dropped, with following feet: the space between them both was no more than the rod leaves open before the bosom of a girl working at the loom, close to the firm breast. Ampelos came third and last. Dionysos saw them out of the corner of his eye, and melted with jealousy that the two competitors should be in front, afraid they might win and Ampelos come in behind them; so the god helped him, breathed strength into him, and made the boy swifter than the spinning gale. Then Cissos, first of the two in the race, striving so hard for the prize, stumbled over a wet place on the shore, slipt and fell in the sandy slush; Leneus had to check the course of his feet, and his knees lost their swing: so both competitors were passed and Ampelos carried off the victory.
§ 10.425 The old Seilenoi shouted Euoi! amazed at the victory of the youth. He received the first prize with soft hair flowing, Leneus took the second full of envy, for he understood the jealous trick of Lyaios and his passion; Cissos eyed his comrades with look abashed, as he held out his hand for the last prize discontented.
§ 11.1 BOOK 11
See the eleventh, and you will find lovely Ampelos carried off by the manslaying robber bull.
The contest was done. The lovely lad exulting in his sportloving victory, skipt about with Bacchos his yearsmate playfellow, and moved his circling legs in gambolling turns. He threw his white right arm about Dionysos; and when Iobacchos saw him jumping about so proud of his two victories, he said to him affectionately:
§ 11.7 Hurry now – have another try, dear boy, after winning that race and after your land action; try a third match, swim against your comrade Bacchos and see if you can beat him! You had the best of it, Ampelos, in wrestling with me on the sands; now show yourself more agile than Dionysos in the rivers! Leave the playful Satyrs to their skippings and come quick again by yourself to a third match. If you win both by land and water, I will crown your lovely hair with a double garland for two victories over Dionysos the unconquerable.
§ 11.17 This lovely stream suits you, suits the beauty of your limbs alone, that there may be a double Ampelos cutting the goldgleaming flood with golden palm; while you stretch naked limbs for victory, all the Pactolian water shall adorn your beauty. Phaethon himself shoots his rosy beams on Oceanos; grant an equal Olympian glory to this river: you too give your brightness to Pactolos, that Ampelos may be seen rising like Phosphoros. Both are radiant, this river with its red metal, and you with your limbs; in the deep riches of his flood let him receive this youth also with the same colour on his skin; let him mix beauty with beauty, that I may cry to the Satyrs — How came rose to rose? How is ruddy flesh and sparkling water mingled into one radiant light?'
§ 11.32 Would that the river Eridanos were here also, dear boy, where are the richrolling tears of the Heliades: then I would wash your limbs with amber and gold together. But since I live very far from the western river, I will visit the city of Alybe close at hand, where the Geudis has a white stream of precious water, that when you come bathed out of river Pactolos, Ampelos, I may make you shine with silvery water too. Let the other Satyrs see to wideflowing Hermos, for he has no golden springs. But you are the only golden boy, and you shall have the golden water.
§ 11.43 Thus speaking, he plunged into the water; Ampelos rose from the ground and joined Lyaios, and a jolly course the two had, zigzag from point to point of the opulent river. The god winning this watery race swam steadily through the water, pushing his bare breast against the stream, moving his feet and paddling with his hands, and so scored the undisturbed surface of the smooth treasury of riches. Now his boy-comrade's course ran beside his own, now he shot past him carefully, just so much as to leave Ampelos still a near neighbour to Bacchos in the way; sometimes he let his hands go round and round as if tired by the water, and willingly yielded quicknee the victory to the other swimmer.
§ 11.56 Leaving the river stream, Ampelos repaired to the shelter of the woods, lifting a proud neck for his victory in the river. He bound his head with a cluster of vipers, like Lyaios's terrible wreath of snakes. Often seeing the dappleback tunic of Bromios, he put over his limbs a spotted dress in imitation, and pushed his light foot into a purple buskin, and threw a speckled robe on his body. When he saw Iobacchos in a car driving panthers about the hills, he showed off exultantly his gambols with rockloving beasts; now mounting the shaggy back of woodland bear, he pulled back the ruff of the grim hurrying beast; now on the hairy neck of a lion he gave it the whip; now he drove an unbridled tiger with delight, seated immovable high on the striped back.
§ 11.71 When Dionysos saw him, he warned him gently, adding friendly prophetic words to console him as the voice of pity issued from reproving lips: Where are your riding, dear boy? Why so fond of the forest? Stay by me when I hunt, and hunt with Dionysos; when Lyaios touches the feast, join in his feasting, and share my revels when I stir the Satyrs to revel. I am not troubled about the panther or the jaws of the wild bear; you need not fear the wild mouth of the mountainranging lioness – fear only the horns of the pitiless bull.
§ 11.81 So he warned bold Ampelos in compassion: the youth heard the words with his ears, but the mind within him was still at play.
§ 11.83 Then came a great portent to doting Dionysos, showing that Ampelos had not logn to live: for a horned dragon covered with scales rose from the rocks, carrying across his back a tender young fawn; he crept over the steps, and threw it upon the altar tumbling and rolling helpless and gored with his horrible horn. The hillranging fawn screamed a shrill note as its wandering spirit flew away. A stream of blood reddened the stone altar with bloody dew like so much trickling wine, harbinger of the libation that should follow. When Euois saw the crawling horned robber with the fawn, he knew that a horned creature would destroy the thoughtless youth. He mingled a laugh with his mourning; his thought was uncertain and divided in two, his heart cleft in halves, as he groaned for the youth so near to death, and laughed for the delectable wine.
§ 11.99 None the less he went with the lovely boy to the mountains, to the flats, to the course of their familiar hunting. Bacchos still delighted to look at him; for loving eyes are never sated with looking. Often as Bromios sat with him at table, the youth would pipe a new strange music, and confused all the notes of his reeds. Even if he broke the tune of his melody, Bacchos made as if the boy were playing well, and sprang from the ground with airy leaps, clapped and clattered with hands together, as the boy yet sang pressed his own lips to his mouth, embraced him lovingly for his beautiful song, as he said, and swore by Zeus that melodious Pan had never sung such another tune nor the clear voice of Apollo.
§ 11.113 But Ate, the deathbringing spirit of Delusion, saw the bold youth straying on the mountains away from Lyaios during the hunt; and taking the charming form of one of his age-mate boys, she addressed Ampelos with a coaxing deceitful speech – all to gratify the stepmother of Phrygian Dionysos.
§ 11.118 Your friend, fearless boy, is called Dionysos for nothing! What honour have you got from your friendship? You do not guide the divine car of Lyaios, you do not drive a panther! Your Bromios's chariot has fallen to Maron's lot, his hand manages the beast-ruling whip and the jewelstudded reins. What gift like that have you gotten from Lyaios of the thyrsus? The Pans have their cithern and their melodious tootling pipes; the Satyrs have the round loudrattling tomtom from your patron Dionysos; even the mountainranging Bassarids ride on the backs of lions. What gifts have you received worthy of your love, you, loved for nothing by Bacchos the driver of panthers? Atymnios has often been seen on high in the chariot of Phoibos cutting the air; Abaris also you have heard of, whom Phoibos through the air perched on his winged roving arrow. Ganymedes also rode an eagle in the sky, a changeling Zeus with wings, the begetter of your Lyaios. But Bacchos never became a lovebird or carried Ampelos, lifting your body with talons that would not tear. The Trojan winepourer had the better of you – he is at home in the court of Zeus. Now my boy, look here: but you are still kept waiting for the chariot, so just refuse to drive a nervous colt on the road – a horse goes rattling along like a tempest on a whirlwind of legs, and shakes out the driver. Glaucos's horses went mad and threw him out on the ground. Quickwing Pegasos threw Bellerophontes and sent him headlong down from the sky, although he was of the seed of the Earthshaker and the horse himself shared the kindred blood of Poseidon.
§ 11.146 Come this way, do, to the herd, where are the clear-piping drovers and lovely cattle – get on a bull, and I will make you conspicuous on his back as the man who can ride a wild bull! Then your bullbody king Dionysos will applaud you more loudly, if he sees you with a bull between your knees! There is nothing to fear in such a run; Europa was a female, a young girl, and she had a ride on bullback, held tight to the horn and asked for no reins.
§ 11.155 This appeal persuaded him, and the goddess flew up into the air. And there was a stray bull suddenly running down from the rocks! His lips were open, and the tongue hung out over his jaws to show his thirst. He drank, then stood looking at the boy just as if he knew him, as if his own keeper were by. He did not hold his horn sideways, but as the mighty bull again and again belched up the drink into his roomy mouth a shower of drops sprinkled the youth, as prophetic of what was to come: for oxen trudging round and round on the ground in everlasting circumambulation about one capstan, irrigate the vinestock with their water.
§ 11.167 The bold boy stood over the bull's brow stroking the curved horns with fearless hand; and excited by a sweet sting of desire for the woodland creature, he longed to ride the mountainranging bull untamed. He pulled up long leafy shoots by a meadow deepset with rushes, and plaited a sort of whip from the fresh withies with sharper twigs, then bent and twisted some bundles into something like a bridle. He decked out the bull's body with fresh dewy leaves, wreathed red roses about his back, lifted lilies and daffodils over his brow and hung a ring of purple anemone on his neck; he dipt his hands deep in the neighbouring river and brought up handfuls of yellow mud, to gild the two horns on either side. He laid a dappled skin over his backbone, and mounted the bull. He swung his makebelieve whip on the bull's flanks and flogged his mount as if he were a longmaned colt.
§ 11.188 So he called out boasting to the round Moon. Selene looked with a jealous eye through the air, to see how Ampelos rode on the murderous marauding bull. She sent him a cattlechasing gadfly; and the bull, pricked continually all over by the sharp sting, galloped away like a horse through pathless tracts.
§ 11.194 The youth when he saw the untamed bull driven by these maddening stings to dash on and on over the highcrested hills, afraid of impending fate, made his prayer in mournful tones: Stop for to-day, my bull, you shall have a quick run to-morrow! Don't kill me high on these deserted rocks, or let me die so that Bacchos never hears of my fate! Don't be angry that I gilded your horns, dear bull; do not grudge that Bacchos keeps my love. But if you must kill me and flout Dionysos, if you have no pity for your sorrowful rider because I am young, because I am friend to Lyaios, take me back to the Satyrs and you shall destroy me there, that when I am dead there I may have many tears on my ashes. Yes I beseech you, dearest Bull! I shall feel consolation if unweeping Dionysos laments my death. If you are traitor to your horned rider, who has a shape like your bullfaced form, get a voice and tell my death to Lyaios. O Bull – enemy of your Demeter and Dionysos both – when Bromios is grieved, bounteous Deo is grieved with him!
§ 11.214 So spoke the rosy boy, so near to Hades, unhappy one! Up to the pathless tops of the mountain leapt the infuriated bull on his cloven hooves, and threw the youth headlong off his back. He fell on his head rolling in a hunched-up heap, and broke his bent neck with a little crack; the bull bowled him over and over on the ground, and pinned him to the earth with the sharp point of his horn. He lay there a headless corpse; his white body unburied was stained with ruddy gore.
§ 11.224 One of the Satyrs caught sight of lovely Ampelos lying in the dust on the ground, and brought the bad news to Bacchos. The god on hearing it ran there swift as the wind. Heracles made no such running, when the Nymphs had hidden dainty Hylas in their envious waters, a bridegroom kept safely for the greedy watersprite, as Bacchos did then while he bounded over the mountain roads; he groaned when he saw the boy lying in the dust as if alive. He clothed the breathless body, laid a fawnskin over his shoulder and cold chest, put buskins on his feet though he was dead; he sprinkled roses and lilies upon his body, and hung a garland on his hair of the soonperishing anemone flowers, as for one fallen too early by a cruel blow. In his hand he placed a thyrsus, and covered him with his own purple robe; from his own uncut head he took one lock, and laid it on the body as a last gift and token. He brought ambrosia from Mother Rheia and poured it into the wounds, whence Ampelos when he took his new shape passed the fragrant ambrosia to his fruit.
§ 11.244 No pallor spread on the rosy skin of the charming body which lay there stretched on the ground. The charming curls of that head so lovely, of one who had died so young, strayed over his face as the gentle breezes blew. He was a ravishing sight even in the dust. Around the body Seilenoi lamented, the Bacchoi mourned. His beauty left him not although he was dead. But like a Satyr the body lay, with a lifelike smile on his face, as if for ever he were pouring his honeysweet voice from those silent lips.
§ 11.253 Dionysos also uttered a voice of sorrow when he saw the body, nevermourning Dionysos with no smile now on his face: Let the Fates drop their envious thread! Are even bulls jealous of boys as the breezes are? What Zephyros is this who has attacked Dionysos too after Apollo? Happy is Phoibos Atymnios!17– for he took that name from the boy. He consoles himself by making to rise the flower named after his Therapnaian youth, and scoring upon the iris-leaves the word Alas! What garland have I on my hair? What speaking petals do I also wave to comfort me in my sorrow for the boy? But I will avenge your death, untimely dead, and drag to slaughter over your tomb that runaway bull. I will not fell your murderer with an axe, to let him share the lot of bulls killed with shattered skull; but I will tear open all the bull's hateful belly with the point of my horn, because he mangled you with that long horny spike of his. Happy is Earthshaker! He loved a Phrygian boy, a neighbour to my own boy's country, and he carried him to the golden house of Zeus and gave him a home in Olympos; and when the boy was eager for the loverace with chariots, he lent his own unsinking car to honour Hippodameia's wedding.
§ 11.276 I only have had a boy who died untimely. For lovely Ampelos knew no life-refreshing marriage; this youth never yoked my car for his ride to the bridal chamber: no, he died, and left grief for Dionysos who cannot grieve. Persuasion has not yet left your tongue, my well-loved boy, but although you are dead she abides on those breathless lips. Although you are dead, those cheeks are still bright with bloom, those eyes are laughing still, your arms and two hands are snowy-white, your lovely curls move in the whistling wind; the hour of death has not blanched the roses of your limbs – all these are preserved untouched.
§ 11.287 Woe's me for Love! What need was there for you to ride on a cruel bull? If some passion for stormfoot horses excited you, why did you not tell me? I could have brought you here a chariot from neighbouring Ida, and got your horses of the ancient heavenly breed of Tros: I could have robbed the country of Ganymedes, who was bred on Ida and had beauty like yours – but Zeus saved him from man-murdering bulls, and flew into the heights carrying him with gentle claws. If you really wanted to kill wild bests in the mountains, why did not you tell me that you had need of a car? You might have driven my rolling wagon without hurt; you might have held the untouchable reins of my Rheia, and flogged a team of tame dragons unstaggering!
§ 11.301 You sing no longer your song with Satyrs over the wine; no longer your marshal the love-rattle Bassarids; no longer you go a-hunting with Dionysos on the chase. Alas, that Hades is never kind! and does not for a corpse accept any glorious gifts of rich metals, that I may make dead Ampelos alive once more. Alas, that Hades is inexorable! If he will consent, I rob the trees by river Eridanos and present him with all their gleaming wealth; I will bring him the flashing Erythraian stone of the Indies, and all the silver of rich Alybe – I will give him all golden Pactolos for my dead boy.
§ 11.313 So he lamented his beloved dead; and looking again upon him as he lay in the dust he cried again to Zeus with mournful voice: Father Zeus! If you love me, and if you know the trouble of love, give speech again to Ampelos only for one hour, that he may only speak once more to me for the last time and say — Why do you sigh for me, Dionysos, when no sighing will wake me? Ears I have, but I hear not the caller; eyes I have, but I see not him that sighs. Dionysos nevermourning, shed no tears over me. Nay, leave your mourning; the Naiads may sigh by that fountain of death, but Narcissus hears not; Phaethon knows not the sorrowful pains of the Heliads.'
§ 11.325 Alas, that my father begat me not a mortal, that I might be playfellow with my boy even in Hades, that I might not leave Ampelos my darling to fall in Lethe alone! Apollo is more blest in the youth he loved that he bears the boy's beloved name; O that also I might be Ampeloian, as Apollo is Hyacinthian! How long will you sleep, my dear? Not dancing any longer? Why do not you go to-day to the river stream with a fine pitcher to fill with water? The time has come round again for your familiar dance in the woodland glade. If you are angry with lovestricken Dionysos, darling boy, speak to the Seilenoi that I may just hear your voice.
§ 11.337 If a lion killed you, I will destroy them all, yes all that the slopes of Tmolos hold; I will not spare the lions of my own Rheia, but I will kill them, if they were your murderers with their grim jaws. If a panther brought you down, you flower of love! I will no longer drive my speckled team of panthers; there are other wild beasts, and Artemis Sovran of all creatures drives an antlered car drawn by stags. I will wear a fawnskin and drive a team of fawns. If merciless boars have killed you, I will grasp all together and kill them, and no one boar will I leave alive for the Archeress. If a presumptuous bull killed you, with the point of my thyrsus I will annihilate the whole generation of bulls root and branch.
§ 11.351 So he lamented. But Eros came near in the horned shape of a shaggy Seilenos, holding a thyrsus, with a dappled skin draped upon him, as he supported his frame on a fennel stalk, for a staff the old man's friend; and he spoke comfortable words to groaning Bacchos: Let loose on another love the sparks of this love of yours; turn the sting upon another youth in exchange, and forget the dead. For new love is ever the physic for older love, since old time knows not how to destroy love even if he has learnt to hide all things. If you need a painhealing medicine for your trouble, court a better boy: fancy can wither fancy. A young Laconian shook Zephyros; but he died, and the amorous Wind found young Cyparissos a consolation for Amyclaian Hyacinthos. Ask the gardener, if you like; when a countryman sees a flower on the ground lying in the dust, he plants another new one to comfort him for the dead one.
§ 11.369 Listen while I tell you a story of the men of old. There was a dainty boy, superior to all his yearsmates, who lived beside the stream of Maiandros, that manybranching river. Tall and delicate he was, swift of foot, with long straight hair, no down on his chin; on both cheeks was a natural grace playing over his face with its modest eyes; a farshooting radiance ever flowed from his eyelids and his arrows of beauty. He had skin all like milk, but over the white the rose showed upon the surface, two glowing colours together. His own father called him Calamos: his father Maiandros, lurking in the secret places with his water in the lap of earth – who rolls deep through the earth and drags his crooked stream toward the light, crawling unseen and travelling slantwise underground, until he leaps up quickly and lifts his neck above the ground.
§ 11.384 Such was lovely Calamos, the quick one. The rosy-armed youth was fond of a charming playfellow Carpos, who had such beauty for his lot as mortal man never had. For if this youth had lived in the older generations, he would have been bridegroom of Eos Fairtress; since he shone lovelier than Cephalos, was handsomer of face than Orion, he alone outdid them with his rosy skin. Deo would not have embraced Iasion as bridegroom with her fruitful arm, nor Selene Endymion. No – this youth with his nobler beauty would soon have espoused both goddesses, one husband for two: he would have taken on the couch of Goldilocks Deo rich in harvests, he would have had beside him also the jealous Mene. Such was the charming friend of Calamos, the flower of love, a real beauty: both comrades of one age were playfellows on the bank of that river of many windings hard by.
§ 11.400 They had a double racecourse, winding out and back, and there they held races. Calamos ran like the wind. He set an elm for starting-point and an olive-tree for turning-point, and ran from point to point on the edges of the river – but nimbleknee Calamos fell on purpose, and left the victory to charming Carpos of his own will. When the boy bathed, the lad bathed and played with him. Again they had another race in the water like the first; Calamos swam slowly in the current and let Carpos go ahead, that he might cut the flood paddling behind and come in second beside the ankles of swimming Carpos, while he watched the free shoulders of the lad in front. The race began from its watery starting-point; the match was, which could beat which to swim there and back while their hands paddled them, passing round at the turning-points on each bank, first one, then crossing to the other side. The flowing water was their way; Calamos kept close beside his brined as they swam, watching his rosy fingers and sparing the vigour of his own moving hand. Calamos again in the lead checked his speed and gave way to his young friend; the boy handpaddled storming along, and lifting his neck above the water. And now Carpos would have got out of the waves, and safe on the shore would have won the river-race as he won the land-race, but a wind beat full in his face and drove a great wave into his open mouth, and drowned the dear boy without pity.
§ 11.427 Calamos avoided the blasts of the jealous wind, and made the nearest shore without his friend. He could neither see him nor get any answer to his cries, so full of love he called out in a lamentable voice: Speak, Naiads! What Wind has caught up Carpos? Yes, I pray, grant me this last grace – go to another fountain, leave my father's fatal water, drink not of the stream which murdered Carpos! My father never killed the boy! That wind had a grudge against Calamos after Phoibos, and he killed Carpos; no doubt he desired him and struck him with a jealous gale – first the quoit, then for this youth the counterblast! My star sank in the stream and has not yet risen, my Phosphoros has not yet shone again! Carpos is drowned in the river, and what care I to see the light any longer?
§ 11.442 Speak, Naiads! Who has quenched the light of love? How long you are, my boy! Why do you like the water so much? Can you have found a better friend in the water, have you thrown to the winds the love of poor Calamos that you may stay with him? If one nymph of the Naiads enamoured has carried you off, tell me, and I will make war on them all! If wedded love is your pleasure, and you want my sister for a wife, do but say so and I will build you a bridechamber in the stream. Have you passed me, Carpos, forgetting the familiar shore? I have shouted till I am tired, and you do not hear my call. If Notos blew on you, if bold Euros, let him go off wandering without dances by himself, the barbarous enemy of love! If Boreas overwhelmed you, I will go to Oreithyia. If the wave covered you and had no pity for your beauty, if my father carried you off in the mericiless rush of his wave, let him receive his son also in those manslaying waters, let him hide Calamos near to dead Carpos. Where Carpos wandered and died, I will fall headlong, I will quench my burning love with a draught of water from Acheron.'
§ 11.463 So he spoke, with streams bubbling from his eyes. To honour the dead he cut with sorrowful steel a dark lock of his hair, long cherished and kept, and holding out this mourning tress to Maiandros his father, he said these last words: Accept this hair, and then my body; for I cannot see the light for one later dawn without Carpos. Carpos and Calamos had one life, and both one watery death for both together in the same stream. Build on the river bank, ye Naiads, one empty barrow for both, and on the tombstone let this verse be engraved in letters of mourning: I am the grave of Carpos and Calamos, a pair of lovers, whom the pitiless water slew in days of yore. Cut off just one small tress of your hair for Calamos too, your own dying brother so unhappy in love, and for Carpos cut all the hair of your heads.'
§ 11.478 With these words, he threw himself into the river and sank, as he swallowed the sonslaying water of an unwilling father. Then Calamos gave his form to the reeds which took his name and like substance; and Carpos grew up as the fruit of the earth.
§ 11.484 But the spirit of Bacchos was scourged yet more with sorrowful care for he lad's untimely death. – And the rosycheek Seasons, daughters of the restless lichtgang their stormfoot father, made haste to the house of Helios. One wore a snowy veil shadowing her face, and sent forth a gleam of subtle light through black clouds; her feet were fitted with chilly hailstone shoes. She had bound her braids about her watery head, and fastened across her brow a rain-producing veil, with an evergreen garland on her head and a white circlet of snow covering her frost-rimed breast.
§ 11.495 Another puffed out from her lips the swallow-wind's breath which gives joy to mortal men, having banded the spring-time tresses of her zephyrloving head with a fresh dewy coronet, while she laughed like a flower, and fanned through her robe far abroad the fragrance of the opening rose at dawn. So she wove the merry dance for Adonis and Cythereia together.
§ 11.501 Another, harvest-home Season, came with her Sisters. In her right hand she held a head of corn with grains clustering on the top, and a sickle with sharpcutting blade, forecrier of harvest; her maiden form was wrapt in linen shining white, and as she wheeled in the dance the fine texture showed the secrets of her thighs, while in a hotter sun the cheeks of her drooping face were damp with dewy sweat.
§ 11.509 Another leading the dance for an easy plowing, had bound about her hairless temple shoots of olive drenched with the waters of sevenstream Nile. Scanty and withering was the hair by her temples, dry was her body; for she is fruitpining Autumn, who shears off the foliage from the trees with scatterleaf winds. For there were no vinebranches yet, trailing about the nymph's neck with tangled clusters of golden curls; not yet was she drunken with purple Maronian juice beside the neatswilling winepress; not yet had the ivy run up with wild intertwining tendrils. But then she fated time had come, which had brought the Seasons running together to the house of Helios.
§ 12.1 BOOK 12
With the twelfth, delight your heart, where Ampelos has shot up his own shape, a new flower of love, into the fruit of the vine.
So these by the brows of western Oceanos took ship for the mansion of Helios their father. As they approached, Hesperos the Evening Star leapt up and went out of the hall to meet them. Selene herself also darted out newrisen, showing her light as she drove her cattle.
§ 12.6 The Sisters at the sight of the lifegiving Charioteer stayed their fruitful step. He had just finished his course and come down from the sky. Bright Phosphoros was ready for the fire-eyed driver, near his chariot and four. He put away the hot yokestraps and starry whip, and washed in the neighbouring Ocean stream the bodies of the firefed horses wet with sweat. The colts shook the dripping manes on their necks, and stamped with sparkling hooves the shining mangertrough. The four were greeted by the twelve circling Hours, daughters of Time, tripling round the fiery throne of the untiring Charioteer in a ring, servants of Helios that attend on his shining car, priestesses of the lichtgang each in her turn: for they bend a servile neck to the ancient manager of the universe.
§ 12.21 Then up and spoke the grapetending Season, holding out her hook of the fruitpining autumn as witness to her prayer: Helios, giver of feason, plantdresser, lord of fruits! When will the soil make winemother grapes to grow? Which of the blessed will have this honour betrothed him by Time? Hide it not, I adjure you, because of all the Sisters I alone have no privilege of honour! I provide no fruit, nor corn, no meadow-hay, no rain from Zeus.
§ 12.29 She spoke, and Helios cheered the nurse of the fruitage to come. He raised finger, and pointed out to his circling daughter close to a wall opposite the separated tablets of Harmonia. ff In these are recorded in one group all the oracles which the prophetic hand of Phanes first born engraved as ordained for the world, and drew with his pencil the house proper for each. And Hyperion, dispenser of fire, added these words: In the third tablet, you shall know whence the fruitage of wine shall come – where is the Lion and the Virgin: in the fourth, who is the Prince of grapes – that is where Ganymedes draws the delicious nectar, and lifts cup in hand in the picture.
§ 12.41 When the god had spoken, the wineloving maiden turned her eyes about, and ran to the place. Beside the oracular wall she saw the first tablet, old as the infinite past, containing all things in one: upon it was all that Ophion lord paramount had done, all that ancient Cronos accomplished: when he cut off his father's male plowshare, and sowed the teeming deep with seed on the unsown back of the daughterbegetting sea; how he opened a gaping throat to receive a stony son, when he made a meal of the counterfeit body of a pretended Zeus; how the stone played midwife to the brood of imprisoned children, and shot out the burden of the parturient gullet.
§ 12.52 But when the stormfoot Season, Phaethon's handmaid, had seen the fiery shining victory of Zeus at war and the hailstorm snowstorm conflict of Cronos, she looked at the next tablet in its turn. There was shown how the pine was in labour of the human race – how the tree suddenly burst its tree-birth and disgorged a son unbegotten self-completed; how Raincloud Zeus brought the waters up in mountainous seas on high and flooded all cities, how Notos and Boreas, Euros and Lips in turn lashed Deucalion's wandering hutch, lifted it castaway on waves in the air and left it harbourless near the moon.
§ 12.64 When the priestess of the lichtgang passed with nimble foot to the third tablet, the circling maiden stood gazing at the manifold oracles of the world's fate, in letters of glowing colour engraved with the artist's vermilion, all that elaborate story which the primeval mind had inscribed; and this was the prophecy that she read in the tablets:
§ 12.70 Hera's herdsman Argus shall change form to a bird, with the appearance of his grim eyes made bright. Harpalyce after the bed of criminal nuptials shall carve up her son for her incestuous father, and paddle a winged course through the air as a stormswift bird. Philomela the busy weaver shall be a twittering swallow with tuneful throat, and cry abroad the witness of her tongueless silence which once she skilfully inscribed like talking words upon a robe. Niobe shall remain a monument of sorrow on the slopes of Sipylos, a rock endowed with sense, and mourning the line of her children with stony tears. Near her shall be Pyrrhos, a Phrygian stone enamoured, still feeling the lawless lust for impossible union with Rheia. Thisbe shall be running water along with Pyramos, both of an age, each desiring the other. Crocos, in love with Smilax, that fairgarlanded girl, shall be the flower of love. And after the goal of the stormy marriage-race, after the Paphian's apples, Artemis shall change Atalanta into a lioness and drive her mad.
§ 12.90 The Season passed restless over all these on one tablet, until she came to the place where fiery Hyperion indicated the signs of prophecy to the wind-swept maiden. There was drawn the shining Lion, there the starry Virgin was depicted in mimic shape, holding a bunch of grapes, the summergrown flower of fruitage: there the daughter of Time stayed her feet, and this is what she read:
§ 12.97 Cissos, the lovely youth, shall creep into a plant, and he shall be the highflying ivy that entwines about the branches. From young Calamos will spring a reed rising straight and bending to the breeze, a delicate sprout of the fruitful soil, to support the tame vine. Ampelos shall change form into a plant and give his name to the fruit of the vine.
§ 12.103 But when the harvest-home maiden had seen all these prophecies, she sought the place where hard by on the neighbouring wall was engraved the figure of Ganymedes pouring the nectar-juice into a golden cup. There was an oracle engraved in four lines of verse. There the grape-loving goddess revelled, for she found this prophecy, kept for Lyaios Ivy-bearer,
Zeus gave to Phoibos the prophetic laurel,
Red roses to the rosy Aphrodite,
The grayleaf olive to Athena Greyeyes,
Corn to Demeter, vine to Dionysos.
§ 12.114 That is what the Euain maiden saw on the tablets. She departed joyful, and with her Sisters was away to the stream of the eastern Ocean, moving along with Phaethon's team.
§ 12.117 But Dionysos had no healing physic for his comrade fallen, of dancing he thought no more. Shaken to the heart by his loving passion, he sounded bitter laments; he left to uncaring silence the bronze back of the timbrel unbeaten, and had no joy in the cithern. Before the unsmiling countenance of Dionysos, full of love and piteous pining, the reedy Lydian Hermos held up his course, and his fastrolling waves which poured on with weatherbeaten throb – he cared no more to flow; Pactolos yellow as saffron with the wealth deep under his flood, stayed his water in mourning, like the image of a sorrowful man; Sangarios the Phrygian stream, in honour of the dead, checked back the course of his banked fountains; the unbreathing image of Tantalos's daughter, the unhappy mother drowned in sighs, wept double tears for mourning Dionysos. The fir whispered softly, moaning to its young friend the pine; even the tree of unshorn Phoibos himself, the laurel, shook her foliage to sorrowful winds; the glossy olive never felled shed her leaves on the ground, for all that she was Athena's tree.
§ 12.138 Since then Dionysos, who never wept, lamented thus in his love, the awful threads of Fate were unloosened and turned back; and Atropos Neverturnback, whose word stands fast, uttered a voice divine to console Dionysos in sorrow:
§ 12.142 He lives, I declare, Dionysos; your boy lives, and shall not pass the bitter water of Acheron. Your lamentation has found out how to undo the inflexible threads of unturning Fate, it has turned back the irrevocable. Ampelos is not dead, even if he died; for I will change your boy to a lovely drink, a delicious nectar. He shall be worshipt with dancing beat of tripling fingers, when the double-sounding pipe shall strike up harmony over the feast, be it in Phrygian rhythm of Dorian tune; or on the boards a musical man shall sing him, pouring out the voice of Aonian reeds for Ismenians or the burghers of Marathon. The Muses shall cry triumph for Ampelos the lovely with Lyaios of the Vine. You shall throw off the twisting coronal of snakes from your head, and entwine your hair with tendrils of the vine; you shall make Phoibos jealous, that he holds out his melancholy iris with its leafy dirge. You too dispense a drink, the earthly image of heavenly nectar, the comfort of the human race, and your young friend shall eclipse the flowery glory of the Amyclaian boy: if his country produces the bronze of battle, your boy's country too increases the shining torrent of red juice like a river – she is all proud of her gold, and she likes not steel. If one boasts of a roaring river, Pactolos has better water than Eurotas. Ampelos, you have brought mourning to Dionysos who never mourns – yes, that when your honeydropping wine shall grow, you may bring its delight to all the four quarters of the world, a libation for the Blessed, and for Dionysos a heart of merry cheer. Lord Bacchos has wept tears, that he may wipe away man's tears! Having spoken thus, the divinity departed with her sisters.
§ 12.173 Then a great miracle was shown to sorrowful Bacchos witnessing. For Ampelos the lovely dead rose of himself and took the form of a creeping snake, and became the healtrouble flower. As the body changed, his belly was a long long stalk, his fingers grew into toptendrils, his feet took root, his curlclusters were grapeclusters, his very fawnskin changed into the manycoloured bloom of the growing fruit, his long neck became a bunch of grapes, his elbow gave place to a bending twig swollen with berries, his head changed until the horns took the shape of twisted clumps of drupes. There grew rows of plants without end; there selfmade was an orchard of vines, twining green twigs round the neighbouring trees, with garlands of the unknown wineblushing fruit.
§ 12.188 And a new miracle was then seen! since young Cissos in his play, climbing with legs across the branches high in a leafy tree, changed his form and took the air as another plant; he became the twining ivy plant which bears his name, and encircled the newgrown orchard of tame vines with slanting knots.
§ 12.193 Then Dionysos triumphant covered his temples with the friendly shady foliage, and made his tresses drunken with the toper's leaves. Now the boy grown plant was quickly ripening, and he plucked a fruit of the vintage. The god untaught, without winepress and without treading, squeezed the grapes firmly with hand against wrist, interlacing his fingers until he pressed out the inebriating issue, and disclosed the newflowing load of the purple fruitage, and discovered the sweet potation: Dionysos Tapster found his white fingers drenched in red! For goblet he held a curved oxhorn. Then Bacchos tasted the sweet sap with sipping lips, tasted also the fruit; and both so delighted his heart, that he broke out into speech with proud throat:
§ 12.207 O Ampelos! this is the nectar and ambrosia of my Zeus which you have made! Apollo wears two favourite plants, but he never ate laurel fruit or drank of the iris! Corn brings forth no sweet potation, by your leave, Deo! I will provide not only drink but food for mortal men! Your fate also is enviable, O Ampelos! Verily even Moira's threads have been turned womanish for you and your beauty; for you Hades himself has become merciful, for you Persephone herself has changed her hard temper, and saved you alive in death for brother Bacchos. You did not die as Atymnios is dead; you saw not the water of Styx, the fire of Tisiphone, the eye of Megaira! You are still alive, my boy, even if you died. The water of Lethe did not cover you, nor the tomb which is common to all, but earth herself shrank from covering your form! No, my father made you a plant in honour of his son; Lord Cronion changed your body into sweet nectar. Nature has not graven Alas upon your tearless leaves, as on the inscribed clusters of Therapne. You keep your colour, my boy, even on your shoots. Your end proclaims the radiance of your limbs; your blushing body has not left you yet. But I will never cease avenging your death; I will pour your wine in libation to your murderous destroyer, the wine of his victim! Your lovely petals put the Hamadryads to shame; the juice of your fragrant bunches brings round me a breath of your love. Can I ever mix the applefruit in the bowl? Can I drop figjuice in the cup of nectar? Fig and apple have their grace as far as the teeth; but no other plant can rival your grapes – not the rose, not the tinted daffodil, not anemone, not lily, not iris is equal to the plant of Bacchos! For with the newfound streams of your crushed fruitage your drink will contain all flowers: that one drink will be a mixture of all, it will combine in one the scent of all the flowers that blow, your flowers will embellish all the spring-time herbs and grass of the meadow!
§ 12.245 Give me best, Lord of Archery, because you wreathed your unmourning hair with your mourning chaplet of dolorous petals! Alas alas is graven on those leaves of yours; and if the Lord of Archery wears his wreath in the garden, I ladle my sweet wine, I put on a lovely wreath, I absorb Ampelos to be at home in my heart by that delicious draught. Brighthelm, give place to Finegrapes! The bloody pours out gore to Ares, the Viny pours to Dionysos the ruddy dew of the winesoaked grape!
§ 12.254 Deo, you are defeated with Pallas! For olives do not bring forth merry cheer of heart, corn does not bewitch a man! The pear has a honeysweet fruit, the myrtle grows fragrant flowers, but they have no heart-bewitching fruit to shoot man's cares to the winds! I am better than you all; for without my wine there is no pleasure in the tablefeast, without my wine the dance has no bewitchment. Brighteyes, drink the fruit of your olive if you can! My fruitage with its glorious gifts has beaten your tree. With your oily olive athletes rub their bodies, without delight; but the sadly afflicted who has given a wife or a daughter to the common fate, the man who mourns children dead, a mother or a father, when he shall taste of delicious wine will shake of the hateful burden of ever-increasing pain.
§ 12.270 O Ampelos, you rejoice the heart of Bacchos even after death! I will soak your drink through all my limbs. All the trees of the forest bow their heads around, as one in prayer bends low the neck. The ancient palmtree inclines his soaring leaves, you stretch your feet round the apple-tree, you clasp your hands about the figtree and hold fast; they support your fruitage as slavewomen their mistress, while you climb over the shoulder of your maids with your tendrils pushing and winding and quivering, while the winds blow in your face the delicate many-coloured leaves of so many neighbouring trees with their widespread clusters, as if you slept and they cooled you with gentle breath. So the servingwoman waves a light fan as in duty bound, and makes a cool wind for her king. If you bring with you Phaethon's midday threats, yet the Etesian wind comes before your grapes, lulling the thirsty star of burning Maira, when the course of the summer season warms your ripening juice with the steam of Seirios.
§ 12.290 So he spoke in his pride, and threw off his earlier cares, now he had found the fragrant fruitage as allheal for the youth.
§ 12.292 That is the song they sing about he grapecluster, how it got its name from the young man. But the poets have another and older legend, how once upon a time fruitful Olympian ichor fell down from heaven and produced the potion of Bacchic wine, when the fruit of its vintage grew among the rocks selfgrown, untended. It was not yet named grapevine; but among the bushes, wild and luxuriant with many-twining parsleyclusters, a plant grew which had in it good winestuff to make wine, being full to bursting with its burden of dewy juice. There was a great orchard of it springing up in rows, where bunch by bunch the grapes swung swaying and reddening in disorder. They ripened together, one letting its halfgrown nursery increase with different shades of purple upon the fruit, one spotted with white, in colour like foam; some of golden hue crowded thick neighbour on neighbour, others with dark bloom all over like pitch – and the wineteeming foliage intoxicated all the olives with their glorious fruit which grew beside them. Others were silvery white, but a dark mist newly made and selfsped seemed to be penetrating the unripe berries, bringing plump fruitage to the laden clusters. The twining growth of the fruit crowned the opposite pine, shading its own sheltered growth by its mass of twigs, and delighted the heart of Pan; the pine swayed by Boreas brought her branches near the bunches of grapes, and shook her fragrant leafage soaked in the blood. A serpent twisted his curving backbone about the tree, and sucked a strong draught of nectar trickling from the fruit; when he had milked the Bacchic potation with his ugly jaws, the draught of the vine turned and trickled out of his throat, reddening the creature's beard with purple drops.
§ 12.324 The hillranging god marvelled, as he saw the snake and his chin dabbled with trickling wine; the speckled snake saw Euios, and went coiling away with his spotty scales and plunged into a deep hole in the rock hard by. When Bacchos saw the grapes with a bellyful of red juice, he bethought him of an oracle which prophetic Rheia had spoken long ago. He dug into the rock, he hollowed out a pit in the stone with the sharp prongs of his earth-burrowing pick, he smoothed the sides of the deepening hole and made an excavation like a winepress; then he made his sharp thyrsus into the cunning shape of the later sickle with curved edge, and reaped the newgrown grapes.
§ 12.337 A band of Satyrs was with him: one stooped to gather the clusters, one received them into an empty vessel as they were cut, one pulled off the masses of green leaves from the bibulous fruit and threw away the rubbish. Another without thyrsus or sharpened steel crouched bending forwards and spying for grapes, and put out his right hand towards the branches to pluck the fruit at the ends of the tangled vine, then Bacchos spread the fruitage in the pit he had dug, first heaping the grapes in the middle of the excavation, then arranging them in layers side by side like cornheaps on the threshingfloor, spread out the whole length of the hole. When he had got all into the hollowed place and filled it up to the brim, he trod the grapes with dancing steps. The Satyrs also, shaking their hair madly in the wind, learnt from Dionysos how to do the like. They pulled tight the dappled skins of fawns over the shoulder, they shouted the song of Bacchos sounding tongue with tongue, crushing the fruit with many a skip of the foot, crying Euoi! The wine spurted up in the grapefilled hollow, the runlets were empurpled; pressed by the alternating tread the fruit bubbled out red juice with white foam. They scooped it up with oxhorns, instead of cups which had not yet been seen, so that ever after the cup of mixed wine took this divine name of Winehorn.
§ 12.363 And one went bubbling the mindcharming drops of Bacchos as he turned his wobbling feet in zigzag jerks, crossing right over left in confusion as he wetted his hairy cheeks with Bacchos's drops. Another skipt up struck with a tippler's madness when he heard the horrid boom of the beaten drumskin. One again who had drunk too deeply of caredispelling wine purpled his dark beard with the rosy liquor. Another, turning his unsteady look towards a tree espied a Nymph half-hidden ,unveiled, close at hand; and he would have crawled up the highest tree in the forest, feet slipping, hanging on by his toenails, had not Dionysos held him back. Near the fountains, another driven by the insane impulse of drunken excitement, chased a naked Naiad of the waters; he would have seized her with hairy hand as she swam, but she gave him the slip and dived into deep water. To Dionysos alone had Rheia given the amethyst, which preserves the winedrinker from the tyranny of madness.
§ 12.382 Many of the horned Satyrs joined furiously in the festive dancing with sportive steps. One felt within him a new hot madness, the guide to love, and threw a hairy arm round a Bacchanal girl's waist. One shaken by the madness of mindcrazing drink laid hold of the girdle of a modest unwedded maid, and as she would have no lovemaking pulled her back by the dress and touched her rosy thighs from behind. Another dragged back a struggling mystic maiden while kindling the torch for the god's nightly dances, laid timid fingers upon her bosom and pressed the swelling circle of her firm breast.
§ 12.394 After the revels over his sweet fruit, Dionysos proudly entered the cave of Cybeleid goddess Rheia, waving bunches of grapes in his flowerloving hand, and taught Maeonia the vigil of his feast.
§ 13.1 BOOK 13
In the thirteenth, I will tell of a host innumerable, and champion heroes gathering for Dionysos.
Father Zeus sent Iris to the divine halls of Rheia, to inform wakethefray Dionysos, that he must drive out of Asia with his avenging thyrsus the proud race of Indians untaught of justice: he was to sweep from the sea the horned son of a river, Deriades the king, and teach all nations the sacred dances of the vigil and the purple fruit of the vintage.
§ 13.8 She paddled her way with windswift beat of wings, and entered the echoing den of stabled lions. Noiseless her step she stayed, in silence voiceless pressed her lips, a slave before the forest queen. She stood bowing low, and bent down her head to kiss Rheia's feet with suppliant lips. Rheia unsmiling beckoned, and the Corybants served her beside the bowl of the divine table. Wondering she drank a sop of the newfound wine, delighted and excited; then with heavy head the spirit told the will of Zeus to the son of Zeus:
§ 13.19 O mighty Dionysos! Your father bids you destroy the race of Indians, untaught of piety. Come, lift the thyrsus of battle in your hands, and earn heaven by your deeds. For the immortal court of Zeus will not receive you without hard work, and the Seasons will not open the gates of Olympos to you unless you have struggled for the prize. Hermeias hardly could win his way to heaven, and only when he killed with his rod Argus the cowherd, sparkling with eyes from his feet to the hair of his head, and when he had set Ares free from prison. Apollo mastered Delphyne, and then he came to live in the sky. Even your own father, chief of the Blessed, Zeus Lord in the Highest, did not rise to heaven without hard work, he the sovereign of the stars: first he must bind fast those threatenders of Olympos, the Titans, and hide them deep in the pit of Tartaros. You also do your work, after Apollo, after Hermaon, and your prize for your labours will be a home in your father's heaven.
§ 13.35 With these words the goddess returned to Olympos. At once Rheia Allmother sent out her messenger to gather the host, Pyrrhichos, the dancer before her love-rattle timbrel, to proclaim the warfare of Lyaios under arms. Pyrrhichos, gathering a varied army for Dionysos, scoured all the settlements of the eternal world; all the races of Europe and the nations of the Asiatic land he brought to rendezvous in the land of the livedainty Lydians.
§ 13.43 But the heroic breed of farscattered champions, the hairy Satyrs, the blood of the Centaur tribe, the bushyknee ancient and his phalanx of the Seilenoi, the regiment of Bassarids – do you sing me these, O Corybantic Muses! For I could not tell so many peoples with ten tongues, not if I had ten mouths pouring a voice of brass, all those which Bacchos gathered for his spearchasing. Yet I will loudly name their leaders, and I will call to my aid Homer, the one great harbour of language undefiled, since mariners lost astray call on Seabluehair to save them from their wandering ways.
§ 13.53 First of all, to obey the summons of Dionysos with his fine thyrsus, Actaion quickly came, in respect for their kindred blood, and left the sevenmouth soil of his native Aonia. Boiotia's battalions came in a flood: those who dwelt in wellwalled Thebes and Onchestos, Earthshaker's place of sojourn, Peteon and Ocalae, and Erythrai, vineclad Arne so proud of Dionysos; and those who inhabited Mideia and the celebrated towns of Eilesion and Scolon and Thisbe based upon the brine, dovehaunted harbour of Aphrodite our Lady of the Sea, and the levels of Schoinos, and leafy Eleon; and the glorious soil of Copai, where I hear still remains the famous lake of that name, the nurse of eels; and shaggy Medeon, and those that held the fine pastures of Hyle, long-stretching fostermother of Tychios the leathercraftsman; and the land of broad threshing-floors kept for the underworld oracle, to bear the name of Amphiaraos and his chariot in later days; and the city of Thespiae and deepsloping Plataiai and moist Haliartos, separated from Helicon by the stream of a mountain river between; and they who possessed Anthedon, the last place down by the sea, the little town of Glaucos the immortal fisherman who lives in the waters; and those of inclement Ascra, the laureate home of the farmer whose name is on every tongue; and the sacred citadel of Graia, and Mycalessos with broad dancing-lawns, named to remind us of Euryale's throat; and the land of Nisa, and the city named after Coronos – all these were led by Actaion to the eastern clime, and laurelled Apollo the Seer, his father's father, sneezed victory for the young man.
§ 13.83 A second host of Boiotians was led by finehair Hymenaios with unmarked chin, young and fresh, beloved by Bromios. As Guardian for the boy came a hoary chieftain named Phoenix; like Laocoon who long ago embarked in the Argo, Iason's ship, and sailed with Meleagros to the Colchian land, his comrade in the battlefield. Such another boy was this in the prime of youth, Hymenaios, with his luxuriant hair curving round either cheek, never cut since he was born, on the way to the Indian War. Shieldmen bare him company, who dwelt in the stronghold of Aspledon, and the dancebeaten precinct of the loves, Orchomenos city of Minyas, which the Graces never leave; those who dwelt in Hyria, that hospitable land which entertained the gods named after hospitable Hyrieus; where that huge giant born of no marriage-bed, threefather Orion, sprang up from his mother earth, after a shower of piss from three gods grew in generative fruitfulness to the selfmade shape of a child, having impregnated a wrinkle of a fruitful oxhide. Then a hollow of the earth was midwife to earth's unbegotten son. Those also came who possessed the place where the assembling Achaians found refuge, rocky Aulis, pavement of the Archeress: where the goddess in heavy resentment received at her altar in the mountains the offering of a pretended Iphigeneia, and a wild pricket of the hills was burnt in a blameless fire, changeling shape of the true Iphigeneia who had been carried away. She it was that cunning Odysseus brought to be Achilles' bride before the trouble, and hence Aulis has the name of matchmaker for Iphigeneia who never married at all; for a guiding wind whistled over the Argive ships, and brought a rescuing breeze for the fawnslayer king. But the girl passed at last on high to the Taurian land, and there she was taught the inhospitable law of their horrible kettles, in cutting up men for meat; but beside the murderous altar she saved the life of her seabeaten brother Orestes.
§ 13.122 These were joined by comrades marching from Phocis near the wise Delphian rock: those who held the settlement of Cyparissos and the land of Hyampolis, taking its name as I hear from the Aonian Sow, which lifted a proud neck and challenged Tritogeneia to a beautymatch. There were also those who had Pytho and the gardens among the precipices, famous Crisa, and Daulis, and Panopeus, neighbour of Bacchos, for laurelled Apollo had made common with his brother Dionysos twopeak Parnassos his domain; as the peoples gathered, the Pythian rock uttered the inspired voice of God, and the tripod spoke of itself, and the babbling rill of Castalia that never silent spring, bubbled with wisdom in its waters.
§ 13.135 The Euboian battalions were ruled by shieldbearing Corybants, guardians of Dionysos in his growing days: who in the Phrygian gulf beside mountainranging Rheia surrounded Bacchos still a child with their drumskins. They found him once, a horned baby, covered with a cloak the colour of purple wine, lying among the rocks where Ino had left him in charge of Mystis the mother of Corymbos. All these came then from the famous island: Prymneus, and Mimas Waddlefoot, and Acmon the forester, Damneus and Ocythoos the shieldman; and with them came flash-helm Melisseus as comrade to Idaios, whom their father Socos under the insane goad of impiety had once cast out of their brinegirt country along with Combe the mother of seven. They escaped and passed to Cnossian soil, and again went on their travels from Crete to Phrygia, and foreign settlers and hearthguests until Cecrops destroyed Socos with avenging blade of justice; then leaving the land of brineflooded Marathon turned their steps homewards to the sacred soil of the Abantes, the earthborn stock of the ancient Curetes, whose life is the tune of pipes, whose life is the goodly noise of beaten swords, whose heart is set upon rhythmic circling of the feet and the shieldwise dancing. To the army came also warrior sons of the Abantes, whose lot was in the beetling brows of Eretria, whose lot was both Styra and Cerinthos, and the settlements of farfamed Carystos, and the barren land of Dion, those who held the shore, that boisterous shore of Geraistos never silent, and Styx and the Cotylaian fort and the habitation of Siris, the stretches of Marmarion and the domain of ancient Aige. With these ranged themselves those whose country was Chalcis, mother city of the Ellopians with backflowing hair. Seven captains armed this host, but all of one temper for war: with blazing altar they propitiated the tenants of the Zodiac path, committing their campaign to the planets of equal number.
§ 13.171 The Cecropides were mustered by Erechtheus, the glutton of battle. – He had in him the golden blood of Erechtheus father of glorious sons, whom once the Virgin selfborn nursed at her manly breast in the recess of her torchlit maiden chamber, Brighteyes unwedded turned nursemaid, and shamefast clasped with her inexperienced maiden arm that son of Hephaistos, when Crookshank unhappy in his wife split his seed in unnatural love, and the hot foam of love fell of itself on the earth. – This was the Erechtheus who came as captain of the Athenians, with Siphnos to share his task, chief of that same city: those whose lot was in the fertile land of Oinoe, and the bee-frequented vales on the heights of neighbouring Hymettos, and the deep woody borders of olive-planted Marathon, and the city of Celeos; and those from the harbour of Athens, Brauron near the sea, the empty barrow of Iphigeneia, and the ground of Thoricos, and teeming Aphidna; and those who hold the Eleusinian land of daughterproud Deo, initiates of the Basket and the goodfruit goddess, those born of the blood of Triptolemos: who once on a time drove Deo's chariot and serpents through the air, with their load of corn-ears, and lashed the serpents' backs. Many an old man of Acharnai came, flourishing his armour of steel about and holding it out to his sons equipping themselves. The ranks of Attica came to join; with spears and with sword the burghers hastened to make the fray, on to the fray fine helmet on head came Athens ranging along, the harbour of Phaleron resounded with men hurrying to war; many a golden cicada was made fast in the plaited hair to proclaim their ancient indigenous race.
§ 13.201 Aiacos also left his native land, whom the sham bird begot, mingling with the daughter of Asopos whom he carried off, the eagle, highsoaring of Zeus the feathered husband of Aigina. He was named Aiacos from this marriage; and most of all he was eager to help his brother Dionysos. He mustered his companies of Myrmidons with competent skill. These once were ants crawling over the earth with their many busy feet, until Zeus in the Highest changed them from their insignificant clayborn shape to a better body, and up grew an armed host: for in a moment a speechless swarm of ants bred in the clay changed their shape and nature into mortals with speech. These were the host that Aiacos led as captain, and he graved on his wellwrought shield, as a token of their origin, Zeus the sham bird with a mind, carrying a woman in gentle talons. Near it was a river god on fire, and a girl beside him sad and downcast, even if she was a lifeless image; she turned her eye aside as if mourning for her father stiffknee Asopos, and she seemed to be crying – A fine bridegift you have brought me, in destroying my father!
§ 13.222 Crete with its peoples of many tongues was commanded by Asterios, one of brilliant beauty, one as lovely as he was strong, both together; his mother was Phaistian Androgeneia, who loosed the girdle of maiden modesty for Minos, and bore her son in a Cydonian bed. He came bringing the people of the hundred cities for wineface Bacchos to honour the blood of his own father's family; for Minos was cousin of Semele and of Cadmos's kin. All the farscattered warriors gathered to one stirring leader; men of war from Cnossos, other from Lyctos joined with troops from Miletos. With them was a large body of armed burghers from hilly Gortyn, and others from Rhytion and fertile Lycastos, and the country of Nodaian Zeus and the habitations of Boibe and the lands of Cisamos and the fair cities of Cytaios. Such was the captain from Crete; and as he came the star of Ares shone upon his starry namesake Asterios, first harbinger of victory to come, pouring forth a prophetic radiance with hotter beams. But after victory in battle he conceived a bastard passion for the strange country, being hard of heart. For after the Indian War he was not to see his native land the cave of the Idaian mount shimmering with helmets; he preferred a life of exile, and instead of Dicte he became a Cnossian settler in Scythia. He left greyheaded Minos and Androgeneia; the civilized man joined the barbaric tribes of guest-murdering Colchians, called them Asterians and gave a Cretan name to Colchians whose nature provided them with outlandish customs. He left his own country and the Cretan river of Amnisos which nourished his childhood, and with shamefast lips drank the foreign water of Phasis.
§ 13.253 Aristaios came slow by himself, last of all those who dwelt in the regions round about the Hellenic land. He lifted high his neck, proud of the sweet honey from his riddled hives. He had challenged Dionysos with his wine, and vainly hoped for the victory of his sweet honey. All the denizens of Olympos judged between them. Phoibos's son offered the new-flowing juice from his hives to the immortals; but he failed to win the victory, because when the gods took the thick juice from the plantloving bee, they soon had enough and tired of the liquid. A third rummer was more than enough for the Blessed; when the cup came round with the fourth brew they would not taste it, thirsty though they were. But when Bacchos ladled out his glorious dewy drops, they were delighted, and drank his flowing wine all day long unceasing. Even drunken they admired the sweet wine, and called for cup after cup one after another with jolly glee, full of hearty good cheer for the bewitching stuff. Zeus admired Aristaios's gift, the product of the honeydropping bee and the curious artwork of the hiveloving brood, but he gave the first prize for troublesoothing victory to Dionysos and his wine. That is why Aristaios came slow to the Indian War. After so long he had only just quieted his old grudge of his greedy youth, and left Hermeias's cave in Cyllene; for he had not yet migrated to the island formerly called Meropis: he had not yet brought there the lifebreathing wind of Zeus the Defender, and checked the fiery vapour of the parched season; he had not stood steelclad to receive the glare of Seirios, and all night long repelled and calmed the star's fiery heat – and even now the winds cool him with light puffs, as he lances his hot parching fire through the air from glowing throat. But he still dwelt in the land of Parrhasia.
§ 13.286 He was followed by the vagabond acornfed Arcadians under arms, those that held Lasion, and the fine glades of Lycaios, and rocky Stymphalos, and Rhipe famous town; Stratia and Mantinea and Enispe, and woodland Parrhasia, where is still to be found the place untrodden in which primeval goddess Rheia was brought to bed; the region of Pheneos, and Orchomenos rich in sheep, only begetter of the dance, seat of Apidaneans. There were there also those of Arcadia, city of Arcas son of Callisto and Zeus, whose father fixed him in the starry firmament and called him Bootes Hailbringer. Such was the host which Aristaios armed with the Arcadian lance, and led sheepdogs to battle with warring men. He was the son of Cyrene, that deerchasing second Artemis, the girl lionkiller, who bore him to the love of Phoibos; when handsome Apollo carried her abroad to sandy Libya in a robber's car for a bridal equipage. And as he came in haste, Apollo his father left the prophetic laurel and armed him with his own hands, gave his son a bow, and fitted his arm with a curiously wrought shield, and fastened the hollow quiver by a strap over the shoulder to hang down his back.
§ 13.309 To him came from Sicily longshot Achates, and shieldbearing comrades with him, a great host of Cillyrioi and Elymoi, and those who lived round the seat of the Palicoi; those who had a city by the lake Catana near the Sirens, whom rosy Terpsichore brought forth by the stormy embraces of her bull-horned husband Acheloos; those who possessed Camarina, where the wild Hipparis disgorges his winding water in a roaring flood; those form the sacred citadel of Hybla, and those dwelling near Aitna, where the rock is alight and kettles of fire boil up the hot flare of Typhaon's bed; those who scattered their houses along the beetling brow of Peloros and the island ground of sea-resounding Pachynos; and Sicilian Arethusa, where after his wandering travels Alpheios creeps proud of his Pisan chaplet – he crosses the deep like a highway, and draws his water, the slave of love, unwetted, over the surface of the sea, for he carries a burning fire warm through the cold water. After these Phaunos came, leaving the firesealed Pelorian plain of threepeak Sicily the rocky, whom Circe bore embraced by Cronion of the Deep, Circe the witch of many poisons, Aietas's sister, who dwelt in the deepshadowed cells of a rocky palace.
§ 13.333 Libyans also joined the host, whose home was in the western clime, the cities of wandering Cadmos near the clouds. For there on a time dwelt Cadmos carried by contrary winds, on the voyage with his Sithonian bride Harmonia still a maiden. The rumour of her beauty bred war and armed hostile neighbours. The Libyan army named her Charis, for the Bistonian girl bloomed like another Charis of this world and even more dainty, and the Graces' Hill of Libya had its name from her. So the Maurusian people of the desert because of her beauty were stung with mad lust of robber warfare, and took arms, a horrible barbarian Ares wild with passion. But Harmonia's mate held his shield before her, grasping in hand the spear of Libyan Athena to defend his beloved wife, and put to flight the whole nation of western Ethiopians, with armed Zeus as ally, with Ares and Cythereia. And there as they say, by the Tritonian lake, Cadmos the wanderer lay with rosycheek Harmonia, and the Nymphs Hesperides made a song for them, and Cypris together with the Loves decked out a fine bed for the wedding, hanging in the bridal chamber golden fruit from the Nymphs' garden, a worthy lovegift for the bride; rich clusters of their leaves Harmonia and Cadmos twined through their hair, amid the abundance of their bridechamber, in place of the wedding-roses. Still more dainty the bride appeared wearing these golden gifts, the boon of golden Aphrodite. Her mother's father the stooping Libyan Atlas awoke a tune of the heavenly harp to join the revels, and with tripping foot he twirled the heavens round like a ball, while he sang a stave of harmony himself not far away. Cadmos too, in memory of the love of his wedded bride, paid his footing in the Libyan land by building a hundred cities, and he gave to each lofty walls inaccessible, with towers of stone. With his memory in mind, came warriors to the host, forefighters of Enyo when Bromios went to war: those who dwell in settlements near the Moon's birthplace, and the southern shelters of Zeus Asbystes the horned prophet, where Ammon the Western Zeus has often uttered oracles in the shape of a ram with three spiral horns; those whose home was on the sandy plain of parched land beside the stream of Chremetes and the water of Cinyps; Auschisai and Bacales together, bred in a corner of the West, and more than others devoted to Ares.
§ 13.378 So great was the people of the hundred cities; and their masses came led by Crataigonos, whom Anchiroe daughter of Chremetes brought forth on her father's riverbank in that shortlasting union with Psyllos the harebrained; the bridegroom she held in her arms was the gods' enemy. Notos, that hot wind, once burnt his crops with parching breath; whereupon he fitted out a fleet and gathered a naval swarm of helmeted warriors, to stir up strife against he winds of the south with avenging doom, eager to kill fiery Notos. To the island of Aiolos sailed the shieldbearing fleet; but the Winds armed themselves and flogged the madman's vessel, volleying with tempestuous tumult in a whirlwind throng of converted confederate blasts, and sank Psyllos and armament in a watery grave.
§ 13.393 From Samothrace came a stream of shieldmen, sent by their prince Emathion of the long flowing beard, himself heavy of knee, with snow-white hair, men limbed like Titans. They possessed both Myrmex on the sea and flower Saoce, aye and the land of Teumerios, and the glades and meadows of Phesiades' land shaded with woodland copses, and divine Zerynthos of the unresting Corybants, the foundation of renowned Perseis, where the rocks are thronged with torchbearing mystics of the Maid. There were others who lived under the manycraggy wall of the land about Brontion, and in Atrapitoi which I hear of on the neighbouring shore of deepsea Poseidon. All these companies came together, who were loyal to their sib, the ancient family of Electra; for there Ares, Zeus and Cythereia gave to Cadmos, the god's ally, Harmonia heaven's kin and sea's blood, to be his lawful wife without brideprice.
§ 13.411 As the armed host gathered to Dionysos with his thyrsus, Electra's star rose with her six sisters in the sky in happy augury of the conflict; and the echoing voice of the Pleiads resounded for victory, doing grace to Dionysos who shared their sister's blood, giving equal confidence to the host. Ogygros led their march to war, Ogygros himself a second war-god, his head towering high like one of the giants. Nothing could bend that great body. From his head and muscular neck, waves of hair fell to his loins, covering his back and shoulders, bristling like the spines of hedgehog. He had a throat of immense length and thickness, like a neck of rock. Barbarian and son of a barbarian was he; no other came to the Indian War in the east stronger than he was, except Dionysos. He had sworn an oath to Victory, that he would destroy the whole land of India with his own spear alone.
§ 13.428 The bold son of Ares, Oiagros, quitted his city of Pimpleia on the Bistonian plain, and joined the rout. He left Orpheus on Calliopeia's knees, a little one interested in his mother's milk, still a new thing.
§ 13.432 The Cyprian companies were under command of proud Litros and finehair Lapethos. Many took up arms: those whose lot was in Spheceia, the round brinebeaten isle; others from Cyprus, god-welcoming island of the fine-feathered Loves, which bears the name of Cypris selfborn. Nereus had traced the boundaries of this Cypros with the deepsea prong, and shaped it like a dolphin. For when the fertile drops from Uranos, spilt with a mess of male gore, had given infant shape to the fertile foam and brought forth the Paphian, to the land of horned Cypros came a dolphin over the deep, which with intelligent mind carried Aphrodite perched on his mane. – Those also were there who held the land of Hylates, and the settlement of Sestos, Tamasos and Tembros, the town of Erythrai, the woody precincts of Panacros in the mountains. From Soloi also came many men-at-arms, and from Lapethos; this place was named afterwards from the leader who assembled them, who fell in the thyrsus-war and was honourable buried and left his name for his citizens. There were those also who had the city Cinyreia, that rock-island which still bears the name of ancient Cinyras; and those from the place where Urania lies, named after the heavenly vault, because it was full of men brilliant as the stars; and those who held Crapaseia, a land surrounded by sea; and those of Paphos, garlanded harbour of the softhaired Loves, landingplace of Aphrodite when she came up out of the waves, where is the bridebath of the seaborn goddess, lovely Setrachos: here Cypris often took a garment and draped the son of Myrrha after his bath. Last is the city of ancient Perseus, for whom Teucros, fleeing from Salamis before the wrath of Telamon, fortified the younger Salamis so renowned.
§ 13.464 A luxurious crowd of Lydians streamed in: those who held both pebbly Cimpsos and beetling Itone; those from broad Torebios, those from fruitful Sardis, nurse of riches, as old as the daydawn; those from the grapegrowing land of Bacchos, where the vinegod first mixed wine for Mother Rheia in a brimming cup, and named the city Cerassai, the Mixings; those that held the watchingpeaks of Oanos, the stream of Hermos and watery Metallon, where the yellow treasure of the water sparkling spirts up the Pactolian mud. A great host came armed from Stataloi. There Typhoeus, spouting up the hot stream of the fiery thunderbolt, had kindled the neighbouring country, and as Typhon blazed amid clouds of smoke, the mountains were burnt to ashes, while his heads melted in the limb-devouring flame. But the priest of Lydian Zeus left the fragrant temple redolent of incense, and without steel made battle with piercing words, a word for a spear, no cutting steel, and brought the Son of Earth to obedience with his tongue; his bold mouth was his lance, his word a sword, his voice a shield, and this was all that issued from his inspired throat – Stand, wretch! So the flaming giant by magic art was held fast in chains of glammery by the invincible word, and stood in awe of a man armed with a spear of the mind, while the avenging sword shackled him in fetters not made of steel. That awful giant towering high, trembled not so much as the Archer of Thunderbolts, as for the battlecrashing magician shooting bolts of speech from his tongue. He gave way, as the sharp words pierced him with wounds speaking in quick words. Already scorched with flame, thrust through with a redhot spear, Typhoeus gave way at the other fire hotter still, a fire of the mind. His snaky feet were rooted firm and immovable by main force, firmly fixt in Earth his mother, his body was wounded by a bloodless blade that made no mark.
§ 13.498 But all this was done in time gone by, among men of a more ancient generation. Here were men armed for the Indian tumult by Stabios and Stamnos, loudly rattling on the ground in drilled step; and if you could see the whole host prancing and leaping, you might be inclined to say that the captain was leading them to a dance rather than to a war, bringing a detachment of armour-dancers. For as they marched, the Mygdonian lute struck up a dance tune for war-music to arouse the tumult of conflict; it sounded the assembly for battle, nor for dance; love's flutings were the trumpets of war; the twin Berecyntian pipes tootled together, the calfskin bellowed, struck on both sides by the brassy rattle of heavyrumbling hands.
§ 13.511 The Phrygians ranged themselves beside the ranks of dinraising Lydians: those whose lot was in Boudeia, and the famous town of treeplanted Temeneia, a shady grove in the country; those who lived in Dresia and Obrimos, which discharges his water into the curving stream of Maiandros; those from the ground of Doias, and those who lived in goldroof Celainai, and the place of the Gorgon's image. These were joined by those who had to inhabit the cities near Sangarios, and the settlements of the Elespid land: they were led by a captain from Dirce of the dragon, Priasos, who came from foreign parts to the Aonian land. For when Rainy Zeus flooded the land of Phrygia, pouring water from on high in seas of rain, when trees were covered, and in glens where thistles grew thirsty hills were flooded with rivers of water, Priasos left his drowned house hidden in the rain and the airclimbing river which had attacked his homestead, and migrated to the bosom of the Aonian land to escape from the fatal showers of rain. But he never ceased to shed tears among these foreign men; he remembered Sangarios and missed his familiar brook, when he drank the alien water of the Aonian River. But Zeus Highest at last quieted the stormy flood and the watery violence, and drove the water of flooded Phrygia down from the tops of Sipylos; Earthshaker with his trident pushed all the waters away into the deep hollows of the boundless sea, and the cliffs were laid bare of the roaring deluge. Then Priasos in late repentance left the land of Boiotos, and returned to his own country, and when he reached home he held his heavyknee father in his arms with a joyful embrace; for great Zeus had saved him from destruction for his pious works: Brombios they call him. Now the Phrygian warriors from the Phrygian gulf proudly thronged about Priasos.
§ 13.546 Asterios the father had gone with another band, but his son Miletos now in the flower of his age came in the company of Bacchos. With him came his brother Caunos to share his dangers. Although only a boy, he led the Carian people into the Indian War. Not yet had he conceived a passion for his innocent sister, and composed that tricking lovesong; not yet had he sung of Hera herself joined with her brother Zeus in a harmonious bed of love like his own, the song about the Latmian cowshed of the neversleeping herdsman, while he praised Endymion, the bridegroom of love-smitten Selene, as happy in love's care on a neighbouring rock. No, Byblis still loved maidenhood – no, Caunos was still learning to hunt, untouched by love for one so near. Not yet had the softhaired brother fled, or the girl changed her body to water by her tears; she was still no sorrowing fountain bubbling up a watery stream. Now courageous warriors flocked about him: those who lived in Mycale, and owned the winding stream of the crooked Maiandros, which sinks into the ground and returns again after crawling through the tunnels.
§ 13.566 So many were the companies that came. With harmonious march the peoples gathered, and the halls of Cybele resounded, and the streets of the Mygdonian city were thronged.
§ 14.1 BOOK 14
Turn your mind to the fourteenth: there Rheia arms all the ranks of heaven for the Indian War.
Then swiftshoe Rheia haltered the hairy necks of her lions beside their highland manger. She lifted her windfaring foot to run with the breezes, and paddled with her shoes through the airy spaces. So like a wing or a thought she traversed the firmament to south, to north, to west, to the turning-place of dawn, gathering the divine battalions for Lyaios: one all-comprehending summons was sounded for trees and for rivers, one call for Naiads and Hadryads, the troops of the forest. All the divine generations heard the summons of Cybele, and they came together from all sides. From high heaven to Lydian land Rheia passed aloft with unerring foot, and returning lifted again the mystic torch in the night, warming the air a second time with Mygdonian fire.
§ 14.15 Now once more, ye breaths of Phoibos, after the tale of mortal heroes and warriors teach me also the host divine!
§ 14.17 First from the firepeak rock of Lemnos the two Cabeiroi in arms answered the stormy call beside the mystic torch of Samos, two sons of Hephaistos whom Thracian Cabeiro had borne to the heavenly smith, Alcon and Eurymedon well skilled at the forge, who bore their mother's tribal name.
§ 14.23 From Crete came grim warriors to join them, the Idaian Dactyloi, dwellers on a rocky crag, earthborn Corybants, a generation which grew up for Rheia selfmade out of the ground in the olden time. These had surrounded Zeus a newborn babe in the cavern which fostered his breeding, and danced about him shield in hand, the deceivers, raising wild songs which echoes among the rocks and maddened the air – the noise of the clanging brass resounded in the ears of Cronos high among the clouds, and concealed the infancy of Cronion with drummings. The chief and leader of the dancing Corybants was Pyrrhichos and shake-a-shield Idaios; and with them came Cnossian Cyrbas, and armed his motley troops, their namefellow.
§ 14.36 The spiteful Telchines came also to the Indian War, gathering out of the cavernous deeps of the sea. Lycos came, shaking with his long arm a very long spear; Scelmis came, following Damnameneus, guiding the seachariot of his father Poseidon. These were wanderers who had left Tlepolemos's land and taken to the sea, furious demons of the waters, who long ago had been cut off reluctant from their father's land by Thrinax with Macareus and glorious Auges, sons of Helios; driven from their nursing-mother they took up the water of Styx with their spiteful hands, and made barren the soil of fruitful Rhodes, by drenching the fields with water of Tartaros.
§ 14.52 Battalions of Cyclopians came like a flood. In battle, these with weaponless hands cast hills for their stony spears, and their shields were cliffs; a peak from some mountain-ravine was their crested helmet, Sicilian sparks were their fiery arrows. They went into battle holding burning brands and blazing with light from the forge they knew so well – Brontes and Steropes, Euryalos and Elatreus, Arges and Trachios and proud Halimedes. One alone was left behind from the war, Polyphemos, tall as the clouds, so mighty and so great, the Earthshaker's own son; he was kept in his place by another love, dearer than war, under the watery ways, for he had seen Galateia half-hidden, and made the neighbouring sea resound as he pouredc out his love for a maiden in the wooing tones of his pipes.
§ 14.67 The rockdwellers came also from their selfvaulted caves, bearing all the name of Pan their father the ranger of the wilderness, all armed to join the host; they have human form, and a shaggy goat's-head upon it with horns. Twelve horned Pans there were, with his changeling shape and hornbearing head, who were begotten of the one ancestral Pan their mountainranging father. One they named Celaineus, Blackie, as his looks bore witness, and one Argennos, Whitely, after his colour; Aigicoros was well dubbed Goatgluts, because he glutted himself with goat's-milk which he pressed from the nannies' udders in the flock. Another masterly Pan was called Longbear Eugeneios, from a throat and chin which was a thick meadow of hair. Daphnoineus the Bloody came along with Omester, Eatemraw; Phobos the Frightaway with shaggy-legged Philamnos the Lamb's Friend. Glaucos came with Xanthos, Glaucos glaring like the bright sea, with a complexion to match. Xanthos had a mane of hair like a bayard, which gave that name to the horned frequenter of the rocks. Then there was bold Argus with a shock of hair as white as snow. With these were two other Pans, the sons of Hermes, who divided his love between two Nymphs: for one he visited the bed of Sose, the highland prophetess, and begat a son inspired with the divine voice of prophecy, Agreus, well versed in the beast-slaying sport of the hunt; the other was Nomios, whom the pasturing sheep loved well, one practised in the shepherd's pipe, for whom Hermes sought the bed of Penelope, the country Nymph. Along with these came Phorbas to join the march, savage and insatiate.
§ 14.96 Old Seilenos also was ready for the fray, holding the fennel-stalk, that horned son of the soil with twiform shape. He brought three festive sons: Astraios was armed for battle; Maron came too, and Leneus followed, each with a staff to support the hands of their old father in his travels over the hills. These ancients already weak had vinebranches to support their slow bodies; many were the years of their time, from these had sprung the hot twiform generation of the muchmarried Satyrs.
§ 14.105 And the horned Satyrs were commanded by these leaders: Poemenios and Thiasos, Hypsiceros and Orestes, and Phlegraios with horned Napaios. There was Gemon, there was bold Lycon armed; playful Phereus followed laughing tippling Petraios, hillranging Lamis marched with Lenobios, and Scirtos tripping along beside Oistos. With Pherespondos walked Lycos the loudvoiced herald, and Pronomos renowned for intelligence – all sons of Hermes, when he had joined Iphthime to himself in secret union. She was the daughter of Doros, himself sprung from Zeus and a root of the race of Hellen, and Doros was ancestor whence came the Achaian blood of the Dorian tribe. To these three, Eiraphiotes entrusted the dignity of the staff of the heavenly herald, their father the source of wisdom. The whole tribe of Satyrs is boldhearted while they are drunken with bumpers of wine; but in battle they are but braggarts who run away from the fight – hares in the battlefield, lions outside, clever dancers, who know better than all the world how to ladle strong drink from the bull mixing-bowl. Few of these have been men of war, to whom bold Ares has taught all the practice of the fray and how to manage a battalion. Here when Lyaios prepared for war, some of them covered their bodies with raw oxhides, others fortified themselves with skins of shaggy lions, others put on the grim pelts of panthers, others equipped themselves with long pointed staves, others girt about their chests the skins of long-antlered stags dappled like stars in the sky. With these creatures, the two horns on the temples right and left lengthened their sharp points, and a scanty fluff grew on the top of the pointed skull over the crooked eyes. When they ran, the winged breezes blew back their two ears, stretched out straight and flapping against their hairy cheeks: behind them a horse's tail stuck out straight and lashed round their loins on either side.
§ 14.143 Another kind of the twiform Centaurs also appeared, the shaggy tribe of the horned Pheres, to whom Hera had given a different sort of human shape with horns. These were sons of the water-naiads in mortal body, whom men call Hyads, offspring of the river Lamos. They had played the nurses for the babe that Zeus had so happily brought forth, Bacchos, while he still had a breath of the sewn-up birth-pocket. They were the cherishing saviours of Dionysos when he was hidden from every eye, and then they had nothing strange in their shape; in that dark cellar they often dandled the child in bended arms, as he cried Daddy to the sky, the seat of his father Zeus, still a child a play, but a clever babe. Of the would mimic a newborn kid; hiding in the fold, he covered his body with long hair, and in this strange shape let out a deceptive bleat between his teeth, and pretended to walk on hooves in goatlike steps. Of the would show himself like a young girl in saffron robes and take on the feigned shape of a woman; to mislead the mind of spiteful Hera, he moulded his lips to speak in a girlish voice, tied a scented veil on his hair. He put on all a woman's manycoloured garments: fastened a maiden's vest about his chest and the firm circle of his bosom, and fitted a purple girdle over his hips like a band of maidenhood.
§ 14.168 But his guile was useless. Hera, who turns her all-seeing ye to every place, saw from on high the ever-changing shape of Lyaios, and knew all. Then she was angry with the guardians of Bromios. She procured from Thesalian Achlys treacherous flowers of the field, and shed a sleep of enchantment over their heads; she distilled poisoned drugs over their hair, she smeared a subtle magical ointment over their faces, and changed their earlier human shape. Then they took the form of a creature with long ears, and a horse's tail sticking out straight from the loins and flogging the flanks of its shaggy-crested owner; from the temples cow's horns sprouted out, their eyes widened under the horned forehead, the hair ran across their heads in tufts, long white teeth grew out of their jaws, a strange kind of mane grew of itself, covering their neck with rough hair, and ran down from the loins to the feet underneath.
§ 14.186 Twelve captains commanded them all: Spargeus and Gleneus the dancer, and beside Eurybios the strange figure of Ceteus the winedresser; Petraios with Rhiphonos, Aisacos the deep drinker and Orthaon, with whom marched both Amphithemis and Phaunos, and Nomeion side by side with wellhorned Phanes.
§ 14.193 Another tribe of twiform Centaurs was ready, the Cyprian. Once when Cypris fled like the wind from the pursuit of her lascivious father, that she might not see an unhallowed bedfellow in her own begetter, Zeus the Father gave up the chase and left the union unattempted, because unwilling Aphrodite was too fast and he could not catch her: instead of the Cyprian's bed, he drops on the ground the loveshower of seed from the generative plow. Earth received Cronion's fruitful dew, and shot up a strangelooking horned generation.
§ 14.203 These combatants were joined by the Bacchai, some coming from the Meionian rocks, some from the mountain above the precipitous peaks of Sipylos. Nymphs hastened to join the soldiers of the thyrsus, the wild Oreads with hearts of men trailing their long robes. Many a year had they seen roll round the turning-point as they lived out their long lives. Some were the Medlars who lived on the heights near the shepherds; some were from the woodland glades and the ridges of the wild forest, nymphs of the mountain Ash coeval with their tree. All these pressed onwards together to the fray, some with brassbacked drums, the instruments of Cybelid Rheia, others with overhanging ivy-tendrils wreathed in their hair, or girt with rings of snakes. They carried the sharpened thyrsus which the mad Lydian women then took with them fearless to the Indian War.
§ 14.219 Stronger than these then came the nurses of Dionysos, troops of Bassarids well skilled in their art: Aigle and Callichore, Eupetale and Ione, laughing Calyce, Bryusa companion of the Seasons, Seilene and Rhode, Ocynoe and Ereutho, Acrete and Methe, rosy Oinanthe with Harpe and silverfoot Lycaste, Stesichore and Prothoe; last of all came ready for the fray Trygie too, that grinning old gammer, heavy with wine.
§ 14.228 Each army was brought to Bacchos by its own separate leader, but the commander-in-chief was Eiraphiotes, roaring with fire, flashing, all-conspicuous. Dancing to battle he came, holding no shield, no furious lance, no sword on shoulder, no helmet on his untrimmed locks, or metal to cover his inviolate head. He only tied his loose tresses with serpent-knots, a grim garland for his head; instead of fine-wrought greaves, from ankle to thigh he wore purple buskins on his silvery feet. He hung a furry fawnskin over his chest, a chestpiece dappled with spots like stars, and he fitted a golden kilt round his loins. In his left hand he held a horn full of delicious wine, cunningly wrought of gold; from this pitcher-horn poured a straight stream of flowing wine. In his right hand he bore a pointed thyrsus wound about with purple ivy, at the end a heavy bronze head covered with leaves.
§ 14.247 As soon as Dionysos had donned the well wrought golden gear of war in the Corybantian courtyard, he left the peaceful precincts of danceloving Rheia and went past Meionia: the warriors with the hillranging Bacchants hastened to meet the lord of the vine. The drivers of wheeled wagons carried shoots of the new plant of Bacchos. Many lines of mules went by, with jars of the viney nectar packed on their backs: slow asses had loads of purple rugs and manycoloured fawnskins on their patient backs. Winedrinkers besides carried silver mixingbowls with golden cups, the furniture of the feast. The Corybants were busy about the bright manger of the panthers, passing the yokestraps over their necks, and entrusted their lions to ivybound harness when they had fastened this threatening bit in their mouths. One Centaur with a bristling beard stretched his neck into the yoke willingly, unbidden; and the man mingled with horse half and half, craving the delicious wine even more than a Satyr, whinnied eager to carry Dionysos on his withers.
§ 14.269 The god seated at the rail of his leaf-entwined car passed the stream of Sangarios, passed the bosom of the Phrygian land, passed the mourning rock of stony Niobe; and the stone, seeing the Indian host warring against Lyaios, shed tears and spoke again with human voice: Make not war against a god, foolish Indians! the son of Zeus! lest Bacchos turn you also, threatening battle, into stone, as Apollo did to me; lest you have to lament a shape like my stony shape; lest you see the goodson of Deriades, Indian Orontes, fallen beside the stream of the river that bears his name. Rheia in wrath is stronger than the Archeress. Flee from Bacchos, Apollo's brother! It would be a shame, if I must see Indians being slain and weep for strangers! So the stone spoke, then silence sealed it again.
§ 14.284 Now the vinegod left the Phrygian plain, and entered Ascania. All the people gathered there, to whom Iobacchos offered his fruitage, accepted his rites and welcomed his dances, bowing the neck to invincible Dionysos, wishing for the quietude of peace without bloodshed. So mighty was the horned host of Bacchos, with the Bacchant women beside them armed for war. But Lyaios kept vigil; all night long heaven thundered, threading fiery streaks among the stars; since Rheia then foretold with witnessing flash the bloodshed of the Indian victory.
§ 14.295 In the morning, the god went forth to war, driving before him the violence of the black men, that he might free the neck of the Lycians and those who dwelt in Phrygia and Ascania from the yoke of cruel tyranny. Then Bacchos sent two heralds to give proclamation of war, either to fight or to fly: and with them went goatfoot Pan, his long-haired beard shadowing his whole-chest.
§ 14.303 But swiftshoe Hera, likening herself to an Indian, the curly-headed Melaneus, warned Astraeis, the spearshaking captain of men, not to uplift the thyrsus nor to heed the yell of drunken Satyrs, but to raise war to the death against Dionysos. She spoke these words to move the Indian chief: You're a nice one, to fear a feeble troop of women! Fight, Astraeis! Arm yourself too, Celaineus, and take a sharp blade to cut down Dionysos and his ivy-bunches! Thyrsus is no match for spear! No, no, look out for Deriades! He will be mad, and make an end of you, if you shrink from a weak unarmed woman!
§ 14.315 She spoke, the stepmother furious against indomitable Dionysos. The goddess got her way, and hid in darkness.
§ 14.317 Then the heralds of Bromios departed, for Astraeis drew near them contemptuous, with pitiless menace on his tongue. Furiously he chased away Pan, and the oxhorned Satyrs, despising the heralds of Dionysos when he was gentle. They turned with timid foot, and made their way back in flight to Dionysos now in warlike mood.
§ 14.323 No Bacchos made ready his army against the hostile troops of Indians. Nor did swarthy Celaineus fail to see the womanish warriors. He leapt up with all speed and called to arms the whole Indian host; while bold Astraeis with ever-growing martial rage took his stand beside the murmuring waves of the Astacid lake, and awaited the attack of Dionysos the vinegod.
§ 14.329 When the captains of the two armies of the two peoples had mustered their troops in two opposing lines, the swarthy Indians advanced to battle with loud cries: like Thracian cranes, when they fly from the scourge of winter and floods of stormy rain to throw their great flocks against the heads of pygmies round the water of Tethys, and when with sharp beaks they have destroyed that weak helpless race, they wing their way like a cloud over the horn of Ocean.
§ 14.338 On the other side, the fighting host madly rushed at the call, the unbending servants of warstirring Dionysos. The battalions of Bassarids also moved like a flood. As they gathered, one twined a rope of snakes about her head, one knotted her hair with scented ivy; another madly caught up her bronze-headed thyrsus, another let down loose tresses of long hair over her neck, a Mainalid unveiled, while the wind blew the unbound locks over her shoulders; another clapped the pair of brazen cymbals, and shook the ringlets upon her head; another driven by the impulse of madness, beat the heavybooming drumskin with her hands, and sounded a loud echo of the battle-din. Then thyrsus did for spear, and hidden under vineleaves was the metal head of the shaft. Another yearning for bloody battle, bound round her neck a rope of raw-fed serpents. One again covered her chest with the spotted skin of a panther, another put on like tunic the dappled skins of mountain fawns, and wrapt herself round with the gay dress which had covered a deer. Another held the cub of a shaggy lioness, and gave it a milky human breast in exchange. There was one who coiled a serpent thrice round under her breast unharmed, a girdle next the skin, while it gaped at her thigh so close, hissing gently, and sleepless gazed at the maiden secrets of the girl who was sleeping off her wine. Another went barefoot over the hills, treading on brambles and sharp bristling thorns, and standing firm on a prickly pear. One attacked a longlegged camel, and sheared through its curving neck with a sweep of her thyrsus: then half to be seen, went stumbling over the path with blind feet the headless body of the camel staggering about in winding ways, until a hoof sank into a slippery hole and the creature rolled over helpless on its back in the dust. Another turned her step to a stretch of pasture in the forest, and caught hold of the fell of a maddened bull, then scoring the bull's neck with savage nails tore off the impenetrable skin, while another tore away all his bowels. You might have seen a girl unveiled, unshod, leaping about on the jagged rocks above a precipice; no fear had she of the sheer fall, no sharp point of stone scratched the girl's naked foot.
§ 14.386 At the mouth of the Astacid lake many a son of India was cut up by the steel of the Curetes. The warriors surrounded the battalions of the foe with blow for blow, and imitated the rhythms of the armour-dance in the wheeling movements of their feet. Leneus broke off a crested peak from a mountain, and lifting this in his hairy hand, he cast the jagged mass among the enemy: the Bacchant yelled in triumph, the Bassarid cast her vinewreathed point, the heads of many men in that blackskin crowd were brought down by the womanish thyrsus. Eupetale was ready, and pierced a bold man with her deadly shaft, then let fly her pointed ivy covered with vineleaves to smash the steal. Stesichore with her bunches of grapes skipt into the mellay, and shooed off a tribe of enemies with manbreaking bullroarer, waving a brazen pair of loudclashing cymbals.
§ 14.403 There was hard fighting on both sides. Thee was the sound of the syrinx – the syrinx awaking the battle! There was drooling of pipes – the shepherd's pipes calling to war! There were the Bassarids' howlings: and as the turmoil arose, the black air bellowed with thunderclaps from Zeus, presaging victory for Bromios to come. A great swarm fell; all the thirsty earth was reddened with running blood, and the mouth of the Astacid lake was a bubbling bloodbath mingled with Indian gore.
§ 14.411 But the god pitied his foes in his heart of merry cheer, and he poured the treasure of wine into the waters. So he changed the snowywhite waters to yellow, and the river swept along bubbling streams of honey intoxicating the waters. When this change came upon the waters, the breezes blew perfumed by the newly-poured wine, the banks were empurpled. A noble Indian drank, and spoke his wonder in these words:
§ 14.419 Here is a strange and incredible drink I have seen! This is not the white milk of goats, not dark like water, nor is it like what I have seen in the riddled hives, what the buzzing bee brings forth with sweet wax. No – this delights the mind with a fragrant scent. A man is thirsty in the steam of this sultry heat – but if he scoops up a few drops of running water in his palms, he shakes off at once the whirlwind of parching thirst! Honey surfeits you sooner – O here's a great miracle! When I drink this I want to drink more! For this had both merits – it is sweet, and it does not surfeit. Hebe, come this way! take up your pitcher, and bring your Trojan cupbearer who serves with cups the divine company – let Ganymedes draw honeyed drops from this river and fill all the mixing-bowls of Zeus! This way, friends, have a taste of a honeydistilling river! Here I see an image of the heavens; for that nectar of Olympos which they say is the drink of Zeus, the Naiads are pouring out in natural streams on the earth!
§ 15.1 BOOK 15
In the fifteenth, I sing the sturdy Nicaia, the rosy-armed beast-slayer defying Love.
As he spoke thus, cloudwise rolled up the burnt-faced Indians around the flood of the honey breathing river. One of them walking near stood pressing his two feet down in the slime. half showing, and wetting his navel in the water, curved into the river and stretching his crouched back, and with hollowed hands lapped up the honeydripping water. Another by the flood, possessed by fiery thirst, bathing in the purple wave his forethrust cheek, spreading his breast above the bank of the river, with opening mouth drew in the juice of Bacchos. Another prone bringing close his mouth to the neighbouring fount, and pressing wet hands on the sandy bottom, with thirsting lips welcomed the thirsty water. Others drew up the potations with a shard for a cup, lifting the base of a broken two-ear jar. And a great swarm drank at the ruddy stream, ladling out with ivy-wood cups a mass of the river-dew, as they held the rustic pot of the shepherds. And as the enemies belched vinously from wide-yawning throat, as their eyes gazed, the cliffs were doubled, and they thought to see through their eyelids a pair of waters in one yoke. And the babbling outflow of the wineloving river gushed up a brown stream of carousal;
§ 15.23 and the fragrant banks poured up streams of the sweet drink of wine. Thus the enemy were made drunken by the untempered stream. Then a certain man of the Indians, driven by the gadfly of mindrobbing drink, dashed into the herd; and by a leafy thicket found a threatening bull, which he brought back pulling him along in bonds, when he had dragged at the sharpened end of the two horns with daring hands, thinking that he drew under the yoke of servitude bullshaped Dionysos by the twin horns. Another, holding the horrid jaw of an iron sickle, shore through the neck of a mountainranging goat, cleaving it with the whetted hook, thinking he was cutting the throat of burned Pan with his talon of crooked bronze. Another threshed out a hornarmed brood of cattle as if harvesting the bullfaced shape of satyrs; one again pursued a tribe at long-antlered deer, as if he were destroying a line of Bassarids, when he saw the patterned shape of the dappled creatures: for his sight was driven astray by the freckled fawnskins of like looks: and staining all his breastpiece with bloody drops, the black Indian was reddened by the spouting gore. And one shouting loudly attacked a neighbouring tree, flogging it on both sides; and observing the leafy tendrils shaken by the spring breezes, he battered at the shoots of the tender clusters, slicing through the leaves of the thickest tree, as if cutting with his sabre through the tresses of unshorn Dionysos, battling with foliage instead of combating with Satyrs, and took a bootless delight in his shadowy conquest. Another enemy troop went mad. For a spear, one took a heavy banging drum, and hung it up by
§ 15.54 his shoulder-strap: then beating on both skins he crashed out a double tune in the brassrattling sound. Another, thrilled by the note of the many-holed pipes, danced about with quick-circling steps, and putting a reed to his inexperienced lips practiced the tune of the double Mygdonian pipes: then leaping to the neighbouring root of an ancient tree, he drew at a green shoot of the rich-dropping olive, soaked with dewy moisture, as though pressing his lip to a drop of Maroneian wine. Others with swords, with spears, with helmets, their wits set a-rioting by the mindrobbing wine, mimicked the orgies of the carryshield Corybants, twirling their steps for the dance-in-armour, and all in a whirl the shields were beaten by alternate thump of hand or the plunging iron. Another eyeing the orgies of the Muse with her choir, skipped a mimicking dance with the Satyrs. And one hearing the roll of the banged oxhide, took on a gentle mood, and with rattleloving desire, threw to the winds his terrible quiver, all frantic: a second chieftain of the woman-mad Indians caught by the untwined hair some highnecked Bacchant, and dragging the untamed virgin to violent wedlock, held her tight on the ground, and stretched in the dust with lust-maddened hands unsealed her belt, wild with vain hope: for suddenly with head erect a serpent crept from her bosom, near-neighbour to the groin, and darted at the enemy's throat, and about his neck twined a circling belt with spirals of his tail: the blackskinned man, fleeing with frightened feet, shook off the hot sting of unhallowed love,
§ 15.86 and wore on his throat the necklace of snaky spine.
While the Indians were running drunken on the hills, just then sweet Sleep plying his rigorous wing, assaulted the wavering eyes at the persistent Indians, and put them to bed, tormented in mind by immoderate wine, doing grace to Pasithea's father, Dionysos. One lay sleeping on his back, with face turning upwards. straining his drinkshaken breath through a sleepy nostril. Another rested his heavy head on a stone, as he lay sluggish on the gravelly bank; he was babbling in the daydreams of a vagrant mind, and laying his fingers stiff and straight about his temples. Another was stretched out prone, with his two hands hanging down to balance his two thighs. Another had leant his head on the wrist of his hand, and was drooling wine; another had gathered his limbs rolled together, like a snake coiling round, and lay slumbering on his side. And the company of the enemy who had rushed to the woody ridge — one slept under an oak, one in the undergrowth of an elm; another fallen on his flank, and leaning against an oak, had put the left hand over forehead and eyebrows; and a great swarm, heavy with wine in their slumber were chattering carcasses, sending into the air the unbridled din of sounds without sense, signifying nothing. One with shaking head, leaned his broad back on the trunk of an aged laurel. Another in heavy stupor upon a deep-strown bed, while the twining saplings of topleaf palm or prolific olive whistled above and fanned him with the winds. One was outstretched on the ground in the outpoured
§ 15.115 dust, washing the tips of his feet in the pouring river. Another shaken in the throes of intoxication, a new experience, leaned his heavy head against a neighbouring pine: another panted until the sinews of his forehead throbbed. Now seeing his foes stupefied, Lord Bacchus spoke with laughing countenance, and uttered his word of command: Indianslaying servants of invincible Dionysos! Bind them all fast unresisting, the sons of the Indians, take them all prisoners in bloodless conflict: let the Indian bend a slaves' knee to mighty Dionysos, and do menial service to my Rheia and her company, shaking the purple thyrsus; let him throw to the storms his silver greaves, and bind his feet in buskins; let him strip his tresses of highplumed helmet, and crown his head with my ivybond; let him leave the yell of wars and the din of spears, and uplift the Euian song to grapeladen Dionysos. He spoke, and the menials were busy. One of them wound a snaky band round the enemy's throat, and dragged the man shackled with a rope of serpents. Another caught the straggling load of a hairy cheek. and drew the man along by the deep-bristling chin. One stretching his palms over curly-haired temples, dragged the man captive, unbound, by the shag. Another binding a prisoner's hands clasped behind the back, girded him with an encircling bond of withies about the neck. Maron staggered along with trembling totterings as he lifted on his aged shoulder an Indian sleepladen. Another took up a spearman overpowered by sleep, put a halter of vines about his neck, pulled him along and dropped him over the rim of a car with dappled panthers.
§ 15.146 Another reclining was seized by the wandering swarm, with cries of Euoi! they stretched his hands behind him and bound them tight with an inextricable knot, and threw him upon the neck of the elephant which never bends the knee; and many a one took hold of the sling of an Indian's shield, and kept him shackled by the strap over the shoulder. 151 Now some Bassarid, foaming under a witdrowning wave of madness, caught up a shepherd's crook, and with daring hand dragged off by his curly hair to the yokeband of slavery, an Indian searcher-out of the deep riches of the sea. At the bidding of Lyaios, iron Erechtheus held on unbending shoulders a foe with fine cuirass; and a Bacchant of the mountains drove away from its intoxicated owner his black-skinned beast, flogging the flanks of some elephant, spoil of the spear. Hymenaios robbed a man of his golden shield, and lifted up the golden buckler, while Bacchos delighted watched him with ardent gaze all gleaming in the armour of the sleeping owner. The young man in his harness shot out a rich brilliance, like as Diomedes sparkled among the warriors, flashing with the rich target he had taken from Lycian Glaucos. And the army of Bacchants despoiled other adversaries, possessed of sweet sleep and sweet wine its comrade.
There was one with a crook-bow, a maiden denizen of the lonely wood, comrade hale and fresh among the nymphs of Astacia, beautiful Nicaia, a new harehuntress Artemis, a stranger to love, unacquainted with Cythereia, ever shooting and tracking the beasts upon the hills. She did not hide in
§ 15.174 the scented nook of the women's rooms. She was ever among the rocks. by lonefaring path, where the bow was her distaff; she was ever in the forest, where winged arrows were her long threads, the upright wood of the net-stakes was a loom far this Athena of the mountains; she shared the tasks of the chaste Archeress, and she netted the meshes for her wonted hunting among the rocks more gladly than she would make twisted yarn. Never did she touch with shaft the timid dappled fawn, the gazelle she followed not, nor handled the hare; but the shaggy breasted lion she fitted about with bloodred bridle, and whipt his gray flanks, and often lifted spear against a maddened bear; and she blamed farshooting Archeress, for letting alone the generation of speckled pards and the tribes of lions, and yoking worthless deer to her car. Nor did she care for perfume: rather than honey-mixed bowls she preferred watery draughts from a mountain brook, as she poured out cool water; lonely cliffs with nature's vaulted roof were the maiden's inaccessible dwelling. Often, her task well done, after the course of her wonted hunting, she sat beside the pards, and remained under one hollow roof at midday near a lioness newly delivered; then the beast gentle with calm brows would lick the girl's body with unscratching jaws, and with timid throat like a whimpering dog, the greedy mouth of the lioness newdelivered purred softly through selfdenying lips, while the lion, thinking her to be
§ 15.202 Artemis, drooped his head to the ground in supplication, and bent his hairy neck before the nymph. And in the forests was a highland oxherd, hale and fresh, his figure stout-built, tall and upright, beyond the youths of his age. His name was Hymnos, and in the midst at the wild wood he tended his lovely cattle where the nymph was his neighbour: he flourished the herdsman's truncheon in lovely hands. But he fell deep to love, and no more took joy of his herd, like a rosy Anchises whose white string of mountainranging bulls Cypris once tended, swinging her girdle to shoo the cattle on. When the herdsman saw the snowywhite girl hunting about the woods, he cared not for his herd of cattle; the calf strayed into the marsh at its own will and grazed alone, wandering from its ancient herdsman now sick in love, and the heifer scampered capering over the hills in search of her keeper. But the young oxherd was wandering, for he saw the rosy round of a maiden's face.
And the deceiver Eros excited the longing herdsman and shook him with yet stronger passion. For as the maiden sped unapproachable on her hunting among the rocks, a light breeze bellied out all her kirtle into the air, and her body showed fair and fresh: white thighs, ruddy ankles, like lily, like anemone, appeared a flowery meadow of snowy limbs; and the young man desire-haunted, with insatiate gaze. watching beheld the unimpeded circuit of her naked thighs. The breeze shook backwards the cluster of her hair, lifting it lightly this way and
§ 15.232 that, and as the hair was lifted the neck bared in the midst gleamed shining white. And the young man often haunted the mountains following the girl, now touching the shafts or feeling at her bow, now watching the rosy-tinted fingers of the lovely girl, when she aimed the lance he loved; if ever in shooting she drew the horn round with the bowstring, and her hand was bared, unseen the young man with furtive eye surveyed the girl's while archer-arm, bringing round again and again the eye, loves conduit, wondering if Hera's arm were as white as Nicaia's; and stretched his gate towards the expanse of evening, to see if the maiden were more white, or Selene.
So the young man, cherishing under his heart the wounds of love, whether near or whether far, kept his mind on the girl: how she drew the arrow for a shot against a mountain bear; how she fastened hand on the lion's neck, circling about it her two arms in a betraying noose; how again, after toil and sweat, she washed her in the flow of a brook, half-showing, ever more careful of her kirtle, when the breeze would shake it and lift it up to the navel, and shoot out the flower of the beauty laid bare. Keeping this in memory, he conjured again the sweet winds, to raise again the deep-folded robe.
And the young man, restless beside his horned herd, saw the girl in high head hunting hard by; and he shouted out these words with envious voice: O that I were a shaft, or a net, or a quiver! O that I were a beast-hitting lance, that she might carry me in her bare hands!
§ 15.261 Would that I could become much rather the ox-gut of the back-bent bow, that she might press me to that snowy breast free of the modest stomacher! Aye, heifer; aye, he-calf, free of the modest stomacher! Maiden, you bear a happy lance; your arrows are more blest than shepherd Hymnos, became they touch your palms that breed love. I envy your sweet voiceless net-stakes. Not only do I long for your stakes; your very bow I envy, and your quiver that breathes not. O that she would refresh her limbs at midday by the amorous fount, and I may see the high-headed girl, aye heifer, aye he-calf, without the envious tunic! Have you not yet pitied me, Cythereia, for this cruel necessity? I know not Thrinacia, I know not his horned herd, no oxen of the Sun are these I tend in the mountains, no father of mine told the secret bed of Ares.
Maiden, do not chase me away, if I do take oxen to pasture! There are herdsmen that lie in heavenly beds. Rosy Tithonos was a bridegroom for whom because of his fine figure lightbringer Eos stayed her car, and caught him up; and he that pours wine for Zeus was an oxherd, whom highsoaring Zeus for his beauty carried off with tender hands. Come hither, tend the kine, and I will call you a younger Selene with another Endymion, this time an oxherd: throw down the lance, take hold of the herdsman's staff, that one may say — 'Cythereia is tending the kine of shepherd Hymnos.' So he spoke and prayed, and tore at his knees with womanmad hands,
§ 15.288 and followed, and trembled to tell her love's frenzy, yet blamed his own silence.
One day, taking courage to further an honourable love, he carried away Nicaia's gear of the chase where it lay, and took her valiant lance, and under a greater sting of longing, angry though the girl was, took also her sweet quiver; he kissed the senseless nets and the arrows that had no breath, and pressing a murderous arrow to his delighted lips, squeezed it with violent hand and put it to his breast; and he said these words with a noiseless voice; In the Paphian's name, utter voice again, you trees! as in Pyrrha's time, as in Deucalion's reprove this mad girl! And you, Daphne beloved, break into arboreal speech! Would that fair Nicaia had been in former times: Apollo would have pursued the more dainty. and Daphne would not have become a bush. So he spoke; and beside the modest girl, he played on his pipes a wedding tune, witness of his pain. But the maiden spoke out in mockery of the herdsman: A pretty thing, your Pan piping the Paphian's tune! Often he chanted Eros, and never became Echo's bridegroom. Ah, how many a song sang Daphnis the oxherd but with his chanting the maiden hid all the more in untrodden ravines, to escape the tune of the shepherd's call. Ah, how many a song sang Phoibos! while Daphne heard him. but felt no pleasure at heart.
§ 15.312 So speaking, she showed her valiant lance to the sottish oxherd. But he, smitten with the maddening sweet sting, not understanding that the Amazon was so heartless, uttered a voice of unhappy passion, harbinger of his own death: Aye, cast your beloved spear, I beseech you, and slay me with your snowy hand, and it is my joy! I fear not your pike, I fear not your sword, wedlock-shirker! So may it provide the quickest end, that I may escape at last the lasting sore of love, the fire that feeds under my heart! May I die, for that fate is my delight! But if you will follow Cypris, and yourself also shoot me a shot from the bow you bear, in the Paphian's name, do not send it through the neck, but fix your shot in my heart, where now is the shot of love. Nay rather, let fly your lance at the neck, strike not the heart: I need no second wound. But if it give you joy, I will endure another shot, that earth may cover me, both keeping the sore of the fire, and wounded by the steel. Kill me the hapless lover, spare not your bowstring. — But you put woman into the steel, when you handle the arrows.— Here I stand, a willing butt, watching with joyous eye the fingers twinkling about the notches, and pulling to its length your honeysweet string, drawing it close to your right breast so rosy! I die Love's willing carrion, by a sweet fate! I care not about death. I tremble not before a cloud of arrows, watching for your bare hand like snow to touch bow and arrow that I desire. Let fly at me all the shots of your quiver, shoot at me your murdering shots:
§ 15.341 other and more bitter arrows already volley upon me fire-barbed. But if you kill me outright with your heartsoothing bow, maiden, pray do not burn my body on the usual pile: no other pyre I need; do but sprinkle upon me in death, my girl, sweet dust with your own hand, the last little grace, that one may say, 'How the maiden pitied him whom she killed!' And when I am dead, let not my fife, let not my cithern lie on my barrow, cast not there my herdsman's crook, witness of my trade; but fix your weapon above the tomb of the slain, still drenched in the hapless lover's gore. And give me another grace, the very last: above my tomb let there be flowers of passion-struck Narcissus, or saffron full of desire, or love's flower the bind-weed; and in the spring-time plant the soon-dying anemone, proclaiming to all my youth too soon cut short. And if you were not born of the unmerciful sea or the mountains, drop a few tears on me, enough to damp with dew the rosy surface of your precious cheek, and with your own hand grave these words with funeral carmine: Here lies oxherd Hymnos, whom the maiden Nicaia killed without share of her bed, and did the last rites for him when dead.'
As he spoke, Nicaia grew angry. Madly she bared the baneful lid of the arrow-shooting quiver, and drew back a straight-coursing shot; to its full
§ 15.366 length she rounded the curved horn of the back-bent bow, like the wind she let fly a shot into the herdsman's throat while he was speaking; irresistible the arrow sped, and in the midst of the stream of words sealed it with a fastening. But the dead body was not without tears then. The Nymph of the mountain was sore offended at manslaying Nicaia, and lamented over the body of Hymnos; in her watery hall the girl of Rhyndacos groaned, carried along barefoot by the water; the Naiads wept, and up in Sipylos, the neighbouring rock of Niobe groaned yet more with tears that flow uncalled; the youngest girl of all, still unacquainted with wedded love, not yet having come to Bucolion's pallet, the Naiad Abarbarea oft reproached the nymph; in the heights of Didymos, gathering near the woods, the Astacides upbraided the nymph of Cybele with her ways, singing the dirge, and not so loudly had the daughters of the Sun wept at the flaring fate of Phaethon dead. And Eros, eyeing the untamed heart of the murderous girl, threw down his bow, and swore an oath by the oxherd, to bring the maiden unwilling under the yoke of Dionysos. Rheia Dindymis upon her lions’ car, with her tearless eyes, groaned for the gallant lad so heavily fallen, even the mother of Zeus, the queen; and maiden Echo who hated marriage whimpered at the lot of Hymnos perishing. Even the trees uttered a voice: “How did the oxherd offend you so much? May Cythereia never be merciful to you, Artemis never!”
§ 15.393 Adrasteia saw the murderous girl, Adrasteia saw the body panting under the steel, and pointed out the newly slain corpse to the Cyprian, and upbraided Eros himself. Hard by the leafy woods tears were shed by the bull in pity for Hymnos, the young calf wept for him, the cow groaned for grief over the panting herdsman, and seemed to cry out these words: The handsome oxherd has perished, a handsome girl has killed him! A maiden has killed one who loved her; instead of love-charms she gave him his fate, she bathed her bronze in the blood of the love-smitten oxherd, and quenched the torch of love—
§ 15.403 The handsome oxherd has perished, a handsome girl has killed him! And she has pained the nymphs, she hearkened not to the mountain rock, she heard not the elm, and regarded not the prayer of the pine, Shoot not your shot, slay not the oxherd!’ Even the wolf groaned for Hymnos, the merciless bears did groan, even the lion with grim eyes mourned for the oxherd.
§ 15.409 The handsome oxherd has perished, a handsome girl has killed him! Look for another scaur, ye cattle, seek a strange mountain, ye bulls; for my sweet oxherd is perished of love, and mangled by a woman’s hand. To what woods shall I guide my track? Farewell, our pastures, farewell our beds on the ground! 414 “The handsome oxherd has perished, a handsome girl has killed him! Goodbye, mountains and promontories, goodbye, ye brooks, goodbye, Naiads, and my trees!” Both Pan of the pastures and Phoibos cried aloud,
§ 15.417 A curse on the fife! Where is Nemesis? Where is Cypris? Eros, handle not your quiver; ye pipes, make music no more; the harmonious oxherd has perished! Apollo showed his sister the lovemurder of the unhappy herdsman without blame; even Artemis herself groaned the dead love of Hymnos, although she was unacquainted with love.
§ 16.1 BOOK 16
In the sixteenth, I sing Nicaia the bride, in her sleep the bedfellow of unresting Dionysos.
The death of the plaintive shepherd was not unavenged; but valiant Eros caught up his bow and drew a shaft of desire, arming unseen himself against Dionysos as he sat by the bank of the pebbly stream.
Fleet Nicaia had finished her wonted hunt for game; sweating and tired by hard work in her beloved highlands, she was bathing her bare body in a mountain cascade. Now longshot Eros made no delay. He set the endshining beard of a winged arrow to the string, and rounded his bow, and buried the whole shot in the heart of love-maddened Lyaios.
Then Dionysos saw the girl swimming in the water bareskin, and his mind was shaken with sweet madness by the fiery shaft. This way and that he went, wherever the maiden harehuntress went: now eyeing the clustering curls of her hair, shaken by the circling breezes as she hurried on her course; spying her bright neck, when the tresses moved aside and bared it till it gleamed like the moon. He cared not for
§ 16.19 Satyrs now, he had no pleasure in Bacchants; but gazing at Olympos, he cried in a love-compelling voice: I will be there, where the dewy chase goes on, where the quiver is, where the bolt and the precious bow, where the very groundpallet is perfumed from the unwedded maiden; I will handle her stakes, and stretch her nets with my own hands: I also will go a-hunting, and kill a fawn like her. And if she scolds me, like some heavy-tempered Amazon, disgorging womanlike her load of honeysweet threatenings, I will lay my hand on the knees of the angry girl, and touch of her lovely skin like a suppliant; but I will carry aloft no spray of olive, because that is the tree of Athena, the maiden unwedded and unsoftened; instead of that bitter oily branch, I will lift to my honeysweet nymph a suppliant cluster of grapes, which contains the purple fruit of honey-dropping vintage. If the crookbow virgin is vexed, let her not pierce my flesh with a lance, nor draw her murderous shot, let her be merciful and tap my body with the tip of her sweet bow: I do not mind a blow that soothes the heart! If it please her, let her hold the shag fast and pull my hair with her precious hands, she may tear out some of the braids and welcome! I will never fend off the maiden; but I will pretend to be cross, and squeeze with unsparing hand the right hand which holds me fast. I will hold the pink fingers imprisoned in my hooked talons, to soothe my love-longing. For the maiden has made prey of all the Olympian beauty.
§ 16.46 Forgive me, Cerne: the Astacid has budded as a new rosyfinger Dawn, a new lightbringer has risen: Nicaia is a younger Selene, who keeps her aspect unchanged. In my desire, I should be glad to take on a world of strange aspects, if respect and veneration for my father did not hold me back. I would go through the waters of Tyre a seafaring bull, and swim along carrying my Nicaia unsprinkled by the deep, like Europa's bridegroom; and I would shake my back as if by accident, that the girl might take fright, and her allwhite right hand might pull at my horn. I would be a winged husband, to dance carrying lightly a wife on my back unshaken, as Cronides did with Aigina; that mated with her I might beget a new eagle,' another birdstar to attend on weddings for the Loves. However, I will not strike with a thunderbolt my bedfellow's begetter, and present a father's death as an impious brideprice, that I may not vex sweet Nicaia for his taking off. Would I were a bastard bird well fledged, because my virgin herself loves winged arrows! I would rather be the flowing form of Danae's loves, a golden shower to lie by her side, myself the marriage gift, myself husband, that I might circle round her and pour forth love's shower of generous dew; for it would suit well my girl Nicaia with her beautiful eyes, and her golden beauty, to have a golden bedmate. Such were the words he rang out in love's madness with passionate voice. And one day, making his way into a fragrant meadow, he observed all the
§ 16.73 flowers blooming with the colours of the girl, and cried out thus to the airy breezes: @ Here at last, Nicaia, I have caught a glimpse of your form! Have you lent your beauty to the flowers? For as I gaze on the fairgrowing rosebed, I recognize your cheeks: but your rose blooms always, for you hold implanted in you the blushing anemone also, that ceases not. When I turn my eye to the lily, I see your snowy arms, when I behold the iris, I see the rich dark colour of your hair. Receive me as comrade in your hunting: and if you wish, I will shoulder myself the sweet burden of your stakes, myself your ankleboots and bow and arrows of Desire, myself I will do it — I need no Satyrs; did not Apollo himself in the woods lift Cyrene's nets? What harm, if I also manage the meshes? I do not think it hard to lift my Nicaia on my own shoulders. I do not set up to be better than my father; for he bore up Europa in the floods unwetted, a seafaring bull.
Rosy maiden, why do you like the forest so much? Spare your lovely limbs, nor let the rough unstrown pallet upon the rocks chafe your back. If you wish, I will be the attendant of your chamber in the house; I will lay your bed, I will spread on it the manyspeckled skins of pards, over which I throw the bristly thick-haired fell of a lion to cover it, stripping it from my own limbs: you shall enjoy sweet sleep covered with the dappled fawnskins of Dionysos. Above you I will throw a tent of the same sort, made of the skins of Mygdonian deer, stript from the Satyrs.
If you should want dogs, I will straight offer
§ 16.102 you the whole pack of my friend Pan together; I will bring you other hounds from Sparta, which my friend Carnean Apollo keeps for the love of his gallant lads, and I will summon the hunting-dogs of Aristaios; string and stakes I will fetch you, and those most suitable gifts, the ankleboots of the Grazer and Hunter, ' who long ago knew both grazing on fine meadows and the happy work of the coursing hunt.
And if you fear the blaze of the thirsty season of harvest, I will plant over your bed shoots of the gardenvine, and the sweet breath of the intoxicating scent shall be wafted over you, lying under the grape-clustered covering. Gadabout maiden, pity the cheeks of your own loveshot countenance beaten by the sun, lest the glare of Helios dim the radiance of your limbs, lest the breeze tumble your anointed curls; sleep among the roses and on iris-petals, rest your head on Dionysos your neighbour, to kindle one revel for immortals four, Phoibos and Zephyros and Cypris and Dionysos.
Let me offer my spoil, the blackskin brood of India, to attend upon your bower. But why did I name the swarthy tribe to array your bridal bed? Does white Eos ever mingle with black-stoled night? You the Astacid are surely a younger Artemis; but more, I will fetch you myself sixty dancing handmaids, to complete the unnumbered dance that attends you, as many as the servants of the mountain
§ 16.129 Archeress, as many as the daughters of Oceanos; then Artemis hunting will not rival you, even if she be the mistress of the hunt. I will present you with the Graces of divine Orchomenos for servants, my daughters, whom I will take from Aphrodite.
Nay, charm your uncharmed heart with desire, and let my bed receive you after the labours of hunting the beasts, that you may appear Artemis among the rocks and Aphrodite in the bed-chamber. What harm that you should hunt along with hunting Lyaios? But if you have the itch for struggle, like the bowfamed Amazon, you shall come to the Indian warfare, to be Athena in the battle, and Peitho when fighting is done. Receive also, if it please you, the thyrsus of Lyaios to bring down your game, and become a slayer of fawns; and with your own hands, by your own efforts, adorn my car, by yoking pards or lions under the bridle. So speaking, he pursued the mountain girl his neighbour, crying aloud as he came near: ' Wait, maiden, for Bacchos your bedfellow! But the maiden was angry and lifted up a strong voice, speeding wild words at Lyaios:
Be off! make that speech to some girl who likes lovemaking! If you can draw into marriage the gray-eyed goddess, or Artemis, you shall have hard Nicaia a willing bride; for I am a comrade of both. But if you miss wedlock with Athena, — none ever heard of such a thing, no birth-pangs for her — if you could not charm the wits of the inflexible Archeress, seek not Nicaia's bed. Let me not see you touching my bow, and handling my quiver, or I may bring you also down to follow Hymnos the shepherd. I will wound Dionysos the unwounded!
§ 16.158 If steel will not cut your limbs, if the lance will not pierce them, I will do as the highcrested sons of Iphimedeia; I will bind you with galling iron chains, wholly like your brother, and I will keep you too like Ares hidden in a brazen pot, until you fulfil twelve circuits of Selene, and throw away your passion for me to the winds of the air. Touch not my quiver with womanlickerish hands: I keep the bow, you the thyrsus. On the Astacian crags I send my shot here against boars or lions, and share the toils of Artemis; over the rocks of Libanos go yourself and pursue the fawns, on the hunt with Aphrodite. I refuse your bed, even if you have the blood of Zeus in you. If I had a mind to a god for my lord, I would not have Dionysos for bedfellow, softhaired, weaponless, spiritless, shaped like a woman; the bridegroom kept for my bower would be my Lord Strongbow or brazen Ares, the one with his bow, the other with sword as a love-gift. But since I will not accept one of the Blessed, since I have no itch to call even your Cronion ' goodfather, seek another, Bacchos, some new bride not unwilling. Why all this haste? This race is not for you to win; so Latoides once pursued Daphne, so Hephaistos Athena.
Why this haste? this race is vain; for among the rocks, buskins are far better than slippers.
She finished, and left Bacchos behind. But he ever searched for the mountainranging maid through
§ 16.184 the nourishing woods; and coursing beside him in that rapid chase went the dog with sagacious mind, the dog which highhorned Pan, breeder of hounds, offered as a gift to Dionysos, once on a time when he was hunting in the highlands which he loved. To him, the comrade of his ways and his labours, Bacchos lovemaddened spoke gently with kind words, as if he thought the creature had sense and voice:
Why do you run with Lyaios, wandering hound, when Pan always misses you, and you are worthy of Pan? Why do you alone track the maiden along with tracking Dionysos? Did your trainer teach you to pity love? Still seek our maiden, and let not Bacchos go wandering alone over the mountains, among the rocks. You alone pity me, and like one human, you follow in the hilly spaces on the ridge where the girl wanders. Work hard for your king! I will repay you well for your labours: I will take you into the upper air, and make you a star like Seirios, the star of Maira, near the earlier Dog, that you also may ripen the clusters, shooting your light to be the grape's Eileithyia. What harm that a third Dog should arise? You also show your light, running a course with the starry Hare as he scampers on. If it is lawful, cast your eyes aside to the ridge of Cybele's forest, and in pity for me reproach the modesthearted girl, that she still flies from my
§ 16.209 pursuit, a woman from a god! Reproach both Adonis and Cythereia, and pursue Echo, flitting inconstant over the mountains, that she may not make my nymph yet more a hater of wedlock; do not leave your rough wooer Pan near the girl, or he may catch her and yoke her under an enforced bridal. If you should see the maiden, quickly come, and with knowing silence or meaning barks give the news to Dionysos; you be love's messenger, and let another dog travel in pursuit of boars or lions from the rocks. Friend Pan, I call you most blessed, because even your dogs have become trackers of the loves. And you. Luck, how many shapes you take, how you make playthings of the children of men! Be gracious, all-subduer! First the human race, and now perhaps you possess the canine race also, when this ill-fated wanderer is a servant for Dionysos in love next after Pan. Reproach the maiden, dear trees, and say, ye rocks, Even the dogs have compassion, and there is no pity in the Amazon! ' So there are dogs too with sense, to whom Cronion has given the thoughts of a man, and yet not a human voice.
A tree was near him while he spoke; and through her clustering leaves an ancient Ashtree heard the cry of womanmad Dionysos, and she uttered a mocking voice: Other masters of hounds, Dionysos, hunt here for the Archeress; but you are huntsman for Aphrodite! Here's a nice fellow to be in fear of a soft-skinned maiden girl! Bacchos the bold, bowing and scraping like a lackey to the loves! lifts in prayer to a weakling girl the hands that butchered the
§ 16.236 Indians! Your father does not know how to go awooing with heartbewitching words of love to bring the girl willing to her bridal; he made no prayer to Semele until he won her love; he did not cajole Danae until he stole her maidenhood. You know how he caught Ixion's wife, the bridegroom's whinney and the equine mating. You have heard of love's game of trickery for Antiope, the laughing Satyr, the sham deceitful mate.
So she mocked the timid mind of Bacchos, and vanished into her coeval tree. But on the hills, Dionysos impatient followed the wild girl with love-mad feet; and the swift-shod Amazon, ever on the move, scoured the topmost heads of difficult mountain-paths, hiding her track from the searcher Lyaios.
But the dry lips of the thirsty girl were parched as Phaethon scourged her skin with his blazing fire, and knowing not the trick of woman-mad Dionysos, she noticed the brown water of the tipplers' river, and drank the sweet liquid, whence the skin-scorched Indians had drunk. With her brain on fire, the girl revelled in her intoxication, and tossed her head to match her double motions; when she turned her eyes to the wide yawning lake, she thought to see two lakes; then as her head grew heavy, she beheld the ridges of the beastfeeding hill double themselves; and with trembling feet, slipping in the dust, she was drawn unconsciously under the wing of Sleep who was not far away. So the bride heavy at knee, was spellbound by her wedding slumber.
§ 16.263 Eros espied her sleeping, and pointed her out to Bacchos, pitying Hymnos; Nemesis laughed at the sight. And sly Dionysos with shoes that made no noise crept soundless to his bridal, placing his footsteps with care. He came near the girl: and softly with gentle hand undid the end of the knot which guarded the girdle of innocence, that sleep might not let the maiden go.
Earth unfolded her teeming fragrance, and brought forth a plot of plants, to do pleasure to Dionysos. Tangled poles of spreading vine lifted a wide covering laden with clusters of grapes, and shaded the bed with its leaves; a selfgrown arbour of vinery embowered the couch with its rich growth, and many a bunch of purple fruit swayed to and fro above it, under the Cyprian's breezes. It screened them both, while in crinkling clumps a lovely sapling of the wine-plant entangled intoxicated the wreaths of ivy which climbed over the growing fruit.
It was a stolen bridal, like bed in a dream with Sleep for helper. The maiden lost her maidenhood, slumbering still; she saw Sleep as marshal of the loves, and as servant of winedeceived nuptials. The breeze, unresting, self-sounding, interwove the hymn of love with caperings, high among the branches of the jubilant forest: and the melody of the mountain bridal, passing on the winds, was answered in modest tones by maiden Echo, Pan's following voice; dancing over the ground the pipes tootled out loudly Hymen Hymenaios; the forest fir resounded, A blessing on this bridal!
Then the soul of the herdsman, passing on the winds, started up and taunted the sleeping maiden in dreams of the night:
A lover also has his avenging spirits, happy bride! If you refused Hymnos as a bridegroom,
§ 16.296 Dionysos has made you a bride! You are a crooked judge, you matchmaking maiden bride! you kill the lover, you pursue him that weds not! Maiden, a brazen sleep you gave to your impassioned Hymnos: maiden, a honeyed sleep lost you your maidenhood! The dead herdsman's piteous blood you saw with a laugh; there was worse piteous groaning when you saw the blood of your maidenhood.
So speaking, away like misty smoke went the soul of the lovesmitten herdsman weeping, and passed beyond pursuit into the courtyard of Tartaros, allcomers' hostel, full of envy for Bacchos and his drinkdeceiving espousals.
Pan also piped a bridal tune on the shrill reeds, hiding secret envy deep in his heart. Pan the master of music; and made a defaming lay for the unnatural union. And one of the lovemad Satyrs in a thicket hard by, staring insatiate upon the wedding, a forbidden sight, declaimed thus, when he saw the bed of Bacchos with his fair maiden:
Horned Pan, still running alone after Aphrodite? When will you too be a bridegroom, for Echo whom you chase? Will you ever bring off a trick like this, to aid and abet you in your nuptials never consummated? Become a gardener too instead of herdsman, my dear Pan; forswear your shepherd's cudgel, leave oxen and sheep among the rocks — what will herdsmen do for you? Wake up! and plant another vine, which provides love's wedding.
Not yet had his words ended, when goatherd Pan cried out:
I wish my father had taught me the trick of that matchmaking wine! I wish I could be lord of
§ 16.322 the mindtripping grape, like Bacchos! Then I should have seen that cruel maiden Echo, asleep and well drunken! then I should have achieved my love, which like a gadfly sends me gadding afar! Farewell to this pasturage! for while I water my sheep here by a neighbouring spring, Dionysos draws intractable nymphs to marriage by means of his tipplers' river! He has invented a medicine for Eros — his plant: away with the goat's milk, away with the milk of my ewes! for that cannot bring sleep to desire, nor a maiden to marriage. I alone, Cythereia, must suffer. Alas for love! Syrinx escaped from Pan's marriage and left him without a bride, and now she cries Euoi to the newly-made marriage of Dionysos with melodies unasked: while Syrinx gives voice, and to crown all. Echo chimes in with her familiar note. O Dionysos, charmer of mortals, shepherd of the bridal intoxication! you alone are happy, because when the nymph denied, you found out wine, love's helper to deck out the marriage! Such were the words of Pan, in sorrow for his thwarted desire, and in envy and love of Lyaios, the achiever of marriage.
And Dionysos, having achieved his love, and the desires of that wayside bed, rose up with unnoted boot. But the nymph awaking reproached the river spring, indignant against Hypnos and Cypris and Dionysos, bathed in a flood of tears; in her pain, she heard still the remnants of the Naiads' nuptial song; and she saw that bed, herald of the couch of lovesick Lyaios, shadowed over with garden vine-leaves, and piled thick with the bridal fawnskins of Dionysos, which gives its own message of Lyaios's
§ 16.350 lovestricken passion, which told the tale of the furtive bed; she saw her own maiden zone wet with the wedding dew. Then she tore her rosy cheeks, and slapt both thighs, and moaned with piercing voice:
Alas for maidenhead, stolen by the Euian water! alas for maidenhead, stolen by the sleep of love! Alas for maidenhead, stolen by that vagabond Bacchos! A curse on that deceitful water of the Hydriads, a curse on that bed! Hamadryad nymphs, whom shall I blame? for Sleep, Eros, trickery and wine, are the robbers of my maiden state! Artemis has deserted her own maidens. But Echo herself the enemy of the bed — why did not Echo tell me the whole scheme? Why did not Pine whisper in my ear, too low for Bacchos to hear? why did not Daphne the Laurel speak out — Maiden, beware, drink not the deceiving water!
She spoke, and flooded her face with a shower of tears. And now she thought to set a sword in her throat, again she would have cast herself rolling off a cliff, to fall headlong in the dust at last; she thought to destroy the nuptial fountain of which she had drunk, but already the stream had got rid of its Bacchic juice, and bubbled out clear water, no longer the liquid of Lyaios. Then she besought Cronides and Artemis to fill the Naiads' grottoes with dust and thirsty soil. Often she strained her eye over the mountains, if anywhere she might find an unsteady footstep of unseen Dionysos, that she might shoot him with her arrows, a woman shoot a god! that she might vanquish the deity of the grapes; yet more she desired to destroy with blazing fire all that marriage-vine. Often, when she saw tracks of
§ 16.380 Bacchos over the mountains, she let off storms of arrows into the air; often she lifted her lance, and cast at a mark, hoping to strike the body of unwounded Dionysos: but in vain she cast, and hit no Lyaios. And she was angry with the river, and swore never to drink the deceitful water of the fountain with thirsty lips; swore to keep her eyes awake through the night, swore not to enjoy sweet sleep again on the mountains. She blamed also the watchdogs, because not even they then attacked the womanmad Lyaios. She sought a remedy in death by the hanging noose, and encircled her neck with a choking throttling loop, to avert the malice of her mocking yearsmates. Unwilling she left the ancient beastbreeding forest, being ashamed after that bed to show herself to the Archeress.
Now lined with the divine dew, the seed of Lyaios, she carried a burden in her womb; and when the time came for her delivery, the lifewarming Seasons played the midwives to a female child, and confirmed the nine-circled course of Selene. From the marriage of Bromios a god-sent girl grew to flower, whom she named Telete, one ever rejoicing in festivals, a night-dancing girl, who followed Dionysos, taking pleasure in clappers and the bang of the double oxhide. And the god built a city of fine stone beside the tipplers' lake, Nicaia, City of Victory, which he named after the nymph Astacia and for the victory which brought the Indians low.
§ 17.1 BOOK 17
In the seventeenth, I celebrate war's firstfruits, and the waters of a honey-trickling river turned to wine.
After he had made captive the Indian nation, shackled in sleep by their potations, immovable, without a wound, Dionysos did not commit his quarrel to the forgetful winds, but once more lifted his Phrygian thyrsus; for he went in haste at the challenge of highcrested Deriades, and left forgotten behind him the trick he had played on the Amazonian girl, the drunken passion and the drowsy nuptials.
The god led the van, wearing a heavenly radiance on his shining face, to proclaim him the son of Zeus. Around the Lydian chariot of giantslaying Dionysos were lines of thyrsus-bearers; he was ringed about with warriors on either side, conspicuous in the midst, and shone in splendour like another heaven. In beauty he threw all into the shade: to see him you might have said it was fiery Helios in the midst of farscattered stars. The lord of the host had brought Enyo without the steel trappings of war; for he carried no sword and no deathdealing ashen lance, but for bronze he had his own invincible spear, the ivy; this he wielded in the cities of Asia, this he planted in the soil of Asia, as he drove the savage
§ 17.21 car of divine Cybele, with a broad rein of grapevine, under the shadow of ivy, the vine's fellow, touching up his travelling team with a blossoming whip — he made drunken the regions of the East with the Maronian fruit. To share the enterprise of Bromios came the whole company of Bacchoi, full of confidence from the first battle, when Seilenos happymad, unarmed, picked up in his linked arms a living corpse unspeaking, an Indian in full armour, and marched off heavy-kneed, a sluggish wayfarer: when the Bacchant Mimallon woman, unveiled and revelling, and bounding in cadence on her two feet, rattled her cymbals over an Indian still asleep, and running a rope round his neck hurried away, with the warplunder that she had been seeking thrown into her hands.
From city to city he went, till he came not far off to the rich country of the Alybe, where neighbouring Geudis rolls the wealthy waves of its heavensent flood white with the current of its watery treasures, and cuts a hollow through the silvern soil.
There as the company of footmen with the homed Satyrs travelled beside the richly stored rocks, Bacchos on his march was entertained by a countryman in a lonely hut, Brongos, dweller in the highland glens where no houses are built. Beside the unquarried wall of these giant strongholds he dwelt, in a house that was no house. The hospitable shepherd milked a goat, and drew a potion snowy-white, to seek the favour of the giver of jolly good cheer with his milky draught in country cups, with common vittles. He brought out a fleecy sheep from the fold, as an offering for
§ 17.48 Dionysos, but the god stayed him. The old man obeyed the immutable bidding of Bacchos, and leaving the sheep untouched he set shepherd's fare before willing Lyaios. So he served a supper no supper, board without beef, such as they say in Cleonai Molorcos once provided for Heracles on his way to fight the lion. Brongos like that kind-hearted shepherd set on the board plenty of the autumn fruit of the olive swimming in brine, and brought fresh curdled cheese in wickerwork baskets, juicy and round. The god laughed when he saw the countryman's light supper, and turning a gracious eye on the hospitable shepherd, he partook of the humble fare, munching greedily. All the time he was reminded of the frugal banquet on that bloodless table, when there was a meal for his Mother, Cybele of the highlands. And he wondered at the stone doors of the round courtyard, how industrious nature had carved a house, how without art the cliffs were rounded in answering proportion.
But when Lord Bacchos had eaten his fill of shepherd's fare, then Brongos the countryman was moved by the divine inspiration of Bacchos; he played Pan's wellknown tune on his pipes, and pressed his fingers on Athena's double tube in honour of Dionysos; who was pleased at heart with the music, and mixing the new liquor of the winepress in the bowl, he said: ' Accept this gift, gaffer, to drink all cares away! You want no more milk when you have this fragrant dew, the image of heavenly nectar brought down to
§ 17.77 earth, like that which Ganymedes ladles out to rejoice great Zeus in Olympos. Forget your wish for your old-fashioned milk: the snowy-white drops pressed from the udders of goats that have just kidded do not make men happy or drive their cares away.
So saying, he gave his gift of gratitude for the shepherd's table, the fine fruitage of grapes, the mother of wine, sorrow's comforter. And the Lord taught him the flowerloving work of the vineyard — to bend the slips of the plants over into fertilizing pits, and to cut the top shoots of an old vine, that new shoots of winegendering grapes may grow.
Leaving the herdsman and the ridge of the wild forest, he now hasted to a new conflict with Indians in the mountains. Bidding the Satyrs who were with him to go on at full speed by the upland tracks, he joined himself again to his wild attendant Bacchants. Thirsting for blood and battle under his thyrsus, he took in hand the loudbraying trumpet of the Tyrhenian Sea, and boomed a note on his conch for battle as he gathered the people. He intoxicated the stout warriors, and drew the men on to war with hotter spirit, to destroy the race of Indians that knew not Bacchos.
So Lord Dionysos marshalled these for the
§ 17.98 Indian War. But Astraeis went unpursued to Orontes, and told him the Indian tribes were enslaved, speaking with sorrowful voice:
Hear me, battle-staunch goodfather of spearbold Deriades! and while you listen be not angry; and I will tell you the drugged victory of Dionysos unarmed! Indians and Satyrs came to blows: bang went the Bassarids' hands, and my people armed them against Lyaios with flashing shields. The cunning man of Lydia shivered to see my warriors lance in hand; he stood at the head of his unwarlike Satyrs, bearing no warspear in his hand, holding no naked sword, no arrow on string drawn at the mark to fly straight through the air. What he held was an oxhorn, and in the hollow of that horn a distilled drug; he lifted it and poured out all the deceitful dew into the stream of the silvery river, and turned the water sweet and red with the juice. The swarthy Indians thirsting in the heat of the battle drank, and all that drank went mad, though still in their senses, and struck up a dance. Then a fatal sleep came over them: unrouted, after the wild revel they fell asleep on their leathern shields. Others lay along the unbedded earth, committing their sluggish bodies to unresting sleep, at the mercy of Dionysos and his weak women. These, without war and the sharp blade, were dragged captive with loaded limbs by the women to fetters and slavery with heavy limbs. Warriors were slung over the shoulders of their foes like living corpses; others, still sputtering the deceitful sap of Bacchos, unwarlike Satyrs made their slaves by main force when maddened by the drugged
§ 17.127 river. From the battle I alone was left; for I had not touched the deadly dew, I left the deceitful water with unwetted lips. Eschew that potion, my shakespear! After this cheating victory of Lyaios without a blow, without blood, let not some other trick in the war capture what is left of the Indians! ' Orontes furious already was more angry than ever at these words, and quickly returned to the battlefield; for the conflict was only half done, and the foundations were being laid for a second combat.
While Ares was arming the Indian host along the mountains, the Bassarids up in the winding glens of Tauros were hastening to the battle, and with them marched Bacchoi with arms and the Pheres without arms. These last began the battle by attacking the enemy; they tore up the foundations of the ravines and cast them, or some crag from the top of the hills. Showers of splintered rocks were hurled rolling on the heads of the Indians. The Pans madly made battle skipping with light foot over the peaks. One of them gript an enemy's neck tight in encircling hands, and ript him with his goat's-hooves, tearing through flank and strong corselet together. Another caught a fugitive Indian and ran him through his middle where he stood, then lifting him on the curved points of his two long-branching antlers, sent him flying high through the airy ways, rolling over himself like a tumbler. Another waved in his hand the strawcutting sickle of sheafbearing Deo, and reaped the enemy crops with clawcurved blade, like cornears of conflict, like gavels of the battle
§ 17.156 field. There was a revel for Ares, there was harvest-home for Dionysos, when the enemy's heads were cut! He offered the curved blade to watching Bacchos, dabbled with human dew, and so poured a blood libation to Dionysos, and made the Fates drunken with the battlecup he filled for them. Another man was standing, when one goatfoot Pan twined both hands interlacing about his neck, and struck his wellcorseleted enemy with his horn, tearing his flank with the double point. Another met a fellow rushing on him with a blow from his cudgel, and smashed his forehead right between the ends of his eyebrows.
Now bold Orontes encouraged his Indian army, and with proud voice poured out these threatening words: This way, friends, open fight against the Satyrs! Fear not the warfare of Shirkbattle Dionysos! Not a man of you must drink of the yellow water, not one be tricked by the sweet fountains of madness with its maddening drug! Or sleep will destroy you also, after the cruel fate of our Indians, after so many heads have been brought low by Lyaios's hand! This way! Let us fight again and fear not! Could unwarlike Bacchos ever hold front against me in open field? If he is able, let the runaway champion stand up to me, that I may teach him what champions Deriades arms for the fray! Let him fight with leaves, I will use flashing steel! While I hold a metal spear, what can a Lydian do to me with a bunch of twigs, a volley of vegetables? This warrior! I will truss up the feeble coward in heavy fetters and drag him along, this womanmad Dionysos, to be a lackey for Deriades. You there, you with the
§ 17.186 soft skin of a woman! Leave all those Indians and fight a duel with one, Orontes. Simple soul! how he waves those long flowing locks round and round! A simple soul is the charming champion of the Bassarids! yes, the women do just the same — pretty looks are the shafts in their quiver. I will match your championesses with amorous Indians — they shall be hauled off to bed as brides won by the spear!
With these words Orontes dashed hot upon the front ranks, reaping a harvest in both kinds. Not one of all that wide front durst abide the adverse onset of so mighty a champion — not bold fiery Eurymedon, not Alcon his kinsman: Astraios chief of the Satyrs was in flight, none of the Seilenoi themselves would stand. With stormy foot Deriades' goodson rushed in, raging, lifted a boulder in the air and let fly at the Centaurs, and hit Hylaios: the stone, a very millstone, crushed the forehead of the shaggybreast shepherd; the missile torn from the rock smashed his headpiece, a sham imitation made of the familiar chalk like a real helmet guarding the face, which fell to the ground like a glowing cinder in many pieces and whitened the dust, while the creature crushed by this stony spear threw his arms along the ground. Next he struck the hairy front of another Centaur with a twobladed axe, and shore away the curving horn from his bull's-head. He fell in a great heap on the ground, and rolled headlong tumbling about half dead and brushing the dust with his ears; then lifting his body on his feet, with a last wild effort he danced a stumbling hideous dance of death: the
§ 17.215 monster let out a harsh roaring sound, like a bull struck on the skull which bellows horribly with grinning jaws.
' The pitiless Erembeus now struck Helice, and drove his blade into her chest: the black hand scored the white circle of her breast with red blood. She rolled in the dust, and the hurtling winds taught her a second sorrow by lifting her robe. As her lovely gore welled up over the skin, she modestly smoothed the errant vesture with her right hand, guarding the bare secrets of the snowy-white thigh.
The god, seeing victory pass to the enemy, and the Satyrs cowed, uttered a loud cry in the turmoil, like an army of nine thousand men pouring defiant shouts with united voices from thunderous throats. Now Orontes fought alone quick-kneed against Bromios, and he a mortal, challenging with human voice a god. Both advanced together to the encounter, one with a spear, one with a pointed thyrsus. Orontes proud of his armament struck Bacchos on the top of his head, but wounded him not; he grazed the sharp horn of Bromios all for nothing. For Lord Dionysos wore on that invulnerable head nothing like the shape of the bullfaced moon which can be cut by the devastating steel of the slaughterer's axe, as they sing of horned Acheloos, when Heracles cut off his horn and took it to adorn his wedding. No, Lyaios wore the heavenly image
§ 17.240 of the cow's-eye moon, a growth of divine horns which cannot be broken, which enemies cannot shake. The bold Indian facing Bacchos, heavy-thundering like a tempest in the sky, again cast a spear, but the point when it touched the fawnskin crumpled up like lead. Bacchos in his turn let fly his purple thyrsus at the broad shoulder of Orontes, and missed on purpose. Then fightgod Orontes laughed aloud at the ivyswathed lance, and said: You that array a crowd of women against my armies, fight if you can with your womanish thyrsus! Play the champion if you can! And if you delight the heart of all mankind, all-conquering, now charm one only whom nothing can charm — Orontes! Stand and fight! you shall see what a prime hero my ancient father Indian Hydaspes has produced! I was not born in Phrygia, where the men are women, who have reaped the corn of youth without seed and without wedlock. I am no unarmed servant of Lyaios the weakling. Drugs will not save your champions; your crazy women I will lead captive, your Seilenoi I \ ill bring from battle as servants for my king, your Satyrs I will destroy, all cowering before my spear!
So cried in defiance the leader of the host. Lord Bacchos was angry when he heard him, and with a vine cluster he tapped him gently on the chest. This tap of an insignificant vinegrown bloom split his breastpiece. The god's pike did not touch the protected flesh, did not scratch his body; but the coat of mail broke and fell with a heavy clang —
§ 17.269 Orontes was naked! He stept back and turned his gaze to the eastern expanse, and uttered his last words to Phaethon opposite: O Helios, cutting the air in your fiery chariot, pouring your light on the Caucasian plowland so near, stay your car I pray, and announce to Deriades how the Indian peoples are slaves, how Orontes has destroyed himself, how the little thyrsus has broken our men! Describe also the drugged victory of unwarlike Dionysos, the winesoaked stream of the delirious river. Tell how women with light bunches of leaves scatter the untiring host of steelclad Indians. And if you have not forgotten your Clymene's bed, protect Deriades, a sprout of your own stock, who has in him the blood of Astris said to be your daughter. I never obeyed Bromios the womanhearted. I bring as witnesses the Sun, and the boundless Earth, and India's god, holy Water. And now farewell. Be gracious on the battlefield to the fighting Indians, and bury Orontes dead.
He spoke, and drew his sword, fixt it against his belly and leapt upon the blade, selfslain, a cruel fate; then rolled into the river and gave it his name Orontes.
§ 17.290 Lord Bacchos looked on him yet breathing and struggling, and addressed him in contemptuous words:
Lie there, you corpse, in foreign waters; and may your father Hydaspes cover dying Deriades. I will destroy you both, goodfather and goodson, shaking my Euian thyrsus with point wreathed in vine, instead of bloodstained spear and wellsharpened sword. But you killed yourself with gory steel, and so you never drank the luxurious water of the honey-distilling river; a river has covered you, but you missed the delicious wine. Drink up the whole river alone, if you like; but you shall have river-water enough when you drink the fatal water of Acheron. Your belly swells already with the bitter water of a murdering stream, and teems quick with Fate; but taste of Cocytos, and drink Lethe if you like, that you may forget Ares and the bloody steel. So he addressed the soaking corpse in contempt. But the dead body of Orontes was carried away swollen by the restless waters, until the stream vomited out the floating corpse upon the bank breathless and cold. There the Nymphs gave it burial and sang their dirges, the Hamadryad Nymphs, beside the stem of a golden laurel on the bank of the river stream, and inscribed upon the trunk above — Here lies Indian Orontes, leader of the host, who insulted Bacchos and slew himself with his own hand.
But the cruel mellay was not ended yet: the struggle was only half done, the conflict unfinished. Indian Ares appeared on high and shouted loud; Bacchos's mad Enyo marshalled them for another bout, belching a load of frenzied Lydian threats in the renewed battle, hurling on the foe volleys
§ 17.321 of deadly garlands, furious for war. The enemies of vineloving Lyaios were slain with bloody wounds from the wooden steel. Bronze-clad Indians marvelled, when steel was cleft by the viny spear of an unarmed Bacchant woman, and their chests were bared and freshly wounded by the sharp ivy; for those who wore the corselet were shot down more easily than the unprotected. Death took many shapes in that indescribable carnage on the Tauros, where the coats of the fighting men were sliced open by twigs and reddened with gore. The Bacchant women unconquerable surrounded in a ring the Indians huddled together, and the bold hoboy sang the call to kill. In that combat the Bacchoi, servants of unwarlike Dionysos, stood like a stone wall unhurt all by the blows of axes and two-edged swords; but their curlyheaded enemies were killed by little bunches of leaves. There were the Indian shafts stuck thick in rows on the tall-branching trees. The fir was pricked by the far-hurled spear, the pine was hit, the laurel though Phoibos's tree was pierced by shots, and hid under its leaves in shame the cloud of feathered arrows flying upon it, that Apollo might not see how the shots hit it. A Bacchant woman without shield and without steel, shook her rattle with naked hand, and a shielded man fell; the drums banged, and the warriors danced; the cymbals clanged, and a man of India bent his neck to beg mercy of Lyaios. On a little fawnskin the unbreakable points of the arrows were bent; the heavy helmet of unyielding metal was cut through by a leaf. A leader of the warmad Satyrs threw
§ 17.351 Euian leafage and hit a man: his coat of mail was split by the ivy and vine, and the wearer was wounded. Astraeis saw the scale of war was dipping to one side and foretelling the victory of Lyaios the Indianslayer, so he fled untouched and saved his life, cowed by the long leafy spear of Dionysos.
Then Aristaios spread lifegiving simples on all the wounds of the Bassarids, and healed them by the art of Phoibos. For one he put centaury-plant on the cuts; for another in distress, he pressed with his fingers about the blood and cleaned away the gory dew. If a Bacchant whimpered, he pounded all manner of herbs to heal the girl's wounds, of foot or hand or breast or flanks as it might be. If a warrior had been struck and blood drawn by an arrow, he pulled out the sharp point, and squeezing the wound with his hand discharged the drops of blood little by little. Another struck by a poisoned arrow he laid hold of, and lanced the wound cutting out the infected surface, with just a touch of the hand and gentle fingers. He mingled the artistic produce of the healbane bee with fresh flowers of the lifesufficing earth, and poured in Bacchos's painkilling sap. Other wounded men he made whole by some charm of Phoibos, humming over an awful ditty full of names which he knew among the secrets of his father's life-saving art.
So he cured the diverse kinds of wounds. By this time the barbarian goddess Enyo had quieted her voice among the fighters, and the Bassarids had led away from the battlefield their crowd of captive warriors; many more of the enemy had left the
§ 17.380 Tauros mountains and returned, their hopes unfulfilled, to the mansion of Deriades in the Indian regions, crowds of men driving their longlived elephants. And herdsman Pan sang loudly, pouring out his victorious note, drawing on the Satyrs to dance drunkenly after their war.
Now woollyhead Blemys, chief of the Erythraian Indians, bent a slavish knee before Dionysos Indianslayer, holding the suppliant's unbloodied olivebranch. And the god when he saw the man bowed upon the earth, took his hand and lifted him up, and sent him far away with his polyglot people, putting a distance between him and the swarthy Indians, now hating the lordship and the manners of Deriades, away to the Arabian land, where beside the sea he dwelt on a rich soil and gave his name to his people. Blemys quickly passed to the mouth of sevenstream Nile, to be the sceptred king of the Ethiopians, men of colour like his. The ground of Meroe welcomed him, where it is always harvest, a chieftain who handed down his name to the Blemyes of later generations.
§ 18.1 BOOK 18
In the eighteenth come Staphylos and Botrys, inviting the mountain-ranging son of Thyone to a feast.
Meantime manytongued Rumour was on the wing; and she flew along the whole line of Assyrian cities, proclaiming the name of Dionysos with his gift of the vine, the glorious fruit of grapes, and his bold warfare with the Indians.
Now Staphylos heard of the unweaponed host of Satyrs, the holy secrets of the vine and the Euian gear of Lyaios. He wished therefore to see Bacchos; and the Assyrian prince brought his son Botrys high in a windswift chariot, and met the advancing god of the vine. Botrys Longhair checked his father's car when he saw Dionysos approaching in his silverwheeled wagon, the panthers in their yokestraps and the lions with shining reins; and Staphylos the sceptred king leapt out of the car when he saw the panthers of Dionysos halt. He sank to the ground on bended knee, and held out an olivebranch with reverent hand. Then the prince addressed Dionysos in conciliating words of friendship: In the name of Zeus the suppliant's god, your own father, Dionysos, in the name of Semele the young god's mother, disregard not my son! I have
§ 18.20 heard how Lycaon entertained your father himself with the Blessed, how he cut up his son Nyctimos with his own hand and served him up to your father unknowing and touched one table with Zeus Almighty, in the land of Arcadia. Again, on the heads of Sipylos, I have heard how Tantalos received your father as his guest, butchered his own son and set him before the gods at dinner; how Cronion fitted together again the separated limbs and restored to life the butchered son, replacing the broad shoulder of Pelops — the only part which Deo had eaten — by a makeshift artificial shape of ivory.
But why, Dionysos, have I named to you Lycaon the Son-murderer who entertained the Blessed, or Tantalos visitor of the skies, who planned the crafty theft of the cups of nectar — why mention the ravisher of nectar and ambrosia? Macello entertained Zeus and Apollo at one table . . . and when Earthshaker had shattered the whole island with his trident and rooted all the Phlegyans at the bottom of the sea, he saved both women and did not strike them down with the trident.
§ 18.39 Do you now follow the example of your Father the Friend of Guests: enter my mansion for one day. Grant this grace to us both, to Botrys and to his father.
He won the god's consent, and drove on with his car, blessing the happiness of his house, while Dionysos followed. Bold Botrys raised his whip, and drove his father's car by winding ways through the wilderness of Mount Tauros, until he guided Lyaios into the Assyrian land. Meanwhile Maron the god's charioteer took up the golden reins of the Mygdonian chariot, and drove the team of stormswift panthers with yokestraps on their necks, sparing not the whip, but whizzing a lavish lash to manage the beasts. Satyrs ran in front, striking up a dance and skipping round and round the hillranging car of Lyaios; troops of flowerloving Bacchant women ran on this side and that side, treading the rough tracks afoot, climbing with quick feet the narrow steps of the mountain-side, while their shoes beat in time with their rattling hands — thus they beguiled the labour of the steep stony path, stung with madness. And the Pans, high on their familiar rocks, danced in the dust with nimble feet, passing over the headlands of those untrodden precipices.
But when they arrived, and the royal palace became visible, shining afar with checkered patterns of stone, then longhaired Botrys left his father's carriage and went swiftshoe into the house, van-courier of the company: he made all ready, and with attentive care prepared the diversified dishes of a rich banquet.
§ 18.67 While Botrys was yet arranging the feast for Lyaios, the king of magnificent bounty displayed to Bacchos the artist's hand in the stonework of his hall, from which poured a shining brightness of many colours and shapes like the sun and his reflecting moon. The walls were white with solid silver. There was the lychnite, which takes its name from light, turning its glistening gleams in the faces of men. The place was also decorated with the glowing ruby stone, and showed winecoloured amethyst set beside sapphire. The pale agate threw off its burnt sheen, and the snakestone sparkled in speckled shapes of scales; the Assyrian emerald discharged its greeny flash. Stretched over a regiment of pillars along the hall the gilded timbers of the roof showed a reddish glow in their opulent roofs. The floor shone with the intricate patterns of a tessellated pavement of metals; and the huge door with a baulk of wood delicately carved looked like ivory freshly cut.
Such were the sights which the old monarch displayed to watchful Bacchos. He could hardly manage to move through the hall with his divine guest, holding Dionysos by the hand; the other followed with slow obedient foot, and turned his wandering gaze to each thing in order. The god was amazed at the hospitable king's hall, embellished with gold and starry with glittering decorations.
The king harried his servants and stirred up his serfs, to slaughter a herd of fine fat bulls and flocks of sheep for the Satyrs of bullhorn Dionysos. Then there was quick work, under the menaces of busy
§ 18.97 Staphylos with relays of serfs. A crowd of servants were hard at it preparing the banquet, bulls were butchered and processions of fat sheep from the pasture. There was dancing too; fragrant air was wafted through a house full of harping, the streets of the city were filled with sweet steamy odours, ample streams of wine made the whole house carouse. Cymbals clanged, panspipes whiffled about the melodious table, double hoboys were drooning, the round of the loudthrumming drum made the hall ring again with its double bangs, there were castanets rattling over that supper!
And there in the midst came Maron, heavy with wine, staggering on unsteady feet and moving to and fro as frenzy drove him. He threw his arms over the shoulders of two Satyrs and supported himself between them, then climbed right up from the ground twisting his legs about them. So he was lifted by the dancing feet of others, with red skin, his whole face emitting ruddy rays and shining between them, the very image of the crescent moon. In his left hand he held a newly flayed skin teeming with the inevitable wine and tied at the neck with a cord; in his right a cup. Bacchant women were all round the old creature as he skips on other men's feet, with lolling head, every moment threatening to fall but never down. Servants and serfs alike were rolling drunk and danced wildly about, after tasting for the first time the delicious wine they never had before.
Methe also, the wife of King Staphylos, mother of a noble son, was made drunken by the winedew of Bacchos. With heavy head she begged
§ 18.127 the Bacchants for more drink, dancing round the full mixingbowl of Lyaios. She rolled her head moving this way and that way, shook the hair over her shoulders unsteadily, dipping her head first here, then there, on one side and the other again and again, ever on the point of falling on her slippery feet, until a Bacchant's hands caught the wild creature and held her up. Staphylos too was drunk; the cheeks of drunken Botrys were red from his tippling cup; still a boy with the down on his face, he with Staphylos his father bound his loosened locks with the unfamiliar ivy and wreathed it like a garland. Then interchanging step with step Botrys danced about with ready feet, changing feet right after left; and Staphylos went skipping in dancing movement, carrying his feet round and round in a running step, with one arm thrown round the neck of dancing Botrys. Staggering he blest the potion of danceweaving Dionysos, and shook his long hair falling over his shoulder from side to side. Methe was dancing too, with an arm round son and husband both, between Staphylos and Botrys. There was a sight to see, the triple-entwined delight of a close-embracing dance! And Pithos, hale old man, shaking his hoary locks in the wind, stuffed to the teeth with the delicious potation, danced heavy with wine, and twirled a drink-tottering foot; he whitened his yellow beard with foam from the sweet Ubations that ran out from his throat.
So they drank the whole day long. Cups were still being filled when shadowy darkness grew black at the fringe, and covered all the western lands,
§ 18.157 when the twilight air darkened and lit up the spangled stars with faint light, when Phaethon set under the cone of shadow and left on his way behind a small trace yet of the day, when silent Night shrouded the west in her own colour, and scored the sky across with her own starry cloak. Then after the tipsy bowl and after the feast of the table, Botrys together with his father, and Dionysos dispenser of wine, went off in a line, each to his separate wellstrown bed; they took the boon of sleep, and had traffic with dreams.
But when the morning twilight, shining messenger of Dawn, cut through the edge of fading mist with rosy sparkles, then long-haired Bacchos leapt up early from his bed, shaken by the hope of victory. For in the night he had destroyed the Indian race with his ivy twined thyrsus, busy in the illusive image of a dream-battle. The noise of Satyrs and the rattle of javelins falling on his ears, shook off the din of his dreamland warfare and scattered that warlike sleep. But dreadful fear was in his heart that the dream foreboded some threatening danger. For in this unreal spectacle he had seen an image of his battle with Lycurgos, prophetic of things to come. In a forest, a bold formidable lion leapt from a rock with deathly jaws upon Bacchos, while he was dancing and still without weapons, and scared him to flight, driving him down to the sea where he hid under water, fleeing from the dangerous beast. He saw another terror besides — how the bold lion chased the thyrsus-bearing women with gaping
§ 18.184 throat and gored them with his claws; as the women were torn, their gear fell from their mystic hands and rolled in the dust, their cymbals lay on the ground. Then a Bacchant turned, and muzzled the lion's jaws by tying a string of vineleaves over his head, and wreathed his neck lightly in a noose. Then crowds of women ran up to the beast one upon another, and scratched with brambles the ugly pads and paws. At last Artemis saved him alive with difficulty, entangled in the clustering meshes; and from the bosom of the sky a flash of lightning shot into the beast's face, and made him a blind vagabond of the roads.
Such was the dream Dionysos had seen. Rising from his bed, he donned about his chest the starspangled corselet of bronze stained with Indian blood, and entwined his hair with a circlet of writhing snakes, and wedged his feet in the reddened boots, took thyrsus in hand — that flowery spear of Enyo — and called a servant Satyr. Prince Botrys, hearing the echoing call from the divine lips of Bacchos hard by, roused himself, put on his own dress, and called to sleeping Pithos. When Methe heard the voice, she reluctantly lifted her heavy head, and letting it fall lazily, went to sleep again; all through the morning the queen still remained with her eyes gathering the most sweet bloom of sleep. At last she left her bed with slow unwilling foot.
Staphylos the grapelover attended upon Lyaios, offering him the guest's gifts as he was hasting for his journey: a two-handled jar of gold with silver cups, from which hitherto he used always to quaff
§ 18.214 the milk of milch-goats; and he brought embroidered robes, which Persian Arachne beside the waters of Tigris had cleverly made with her fine thread. Then the generous king spoke to Bromios: Fight away, Dionysos, and do deeds worthy of your sire! Show that you have the blood of Cronides in you! For your father in his first youth battered the earthborn Titans out of Olympos, when he was only a boy: on then and do your part in the struggle, destroy the overweening nation of earthborn Indians! I remember a tale which once my father heard from his father, Assyrian Belos the sovereign of my country; this I will tell to you.
Cronos still dripping held the emasculating sickleblade, after he had cut off the manly crop of his father's plow and robbed him of the Mother's bed to which he was hastening, and warred against your sire at the head of the Titans. Broadbeard Cronos fanned the flame of Enyo as he cast icy spears against Cronion, shooting his cold watery shafts: sharp pointed arrows of hail were shot from the sky. But Zeus armed himself with more fires than Helios, and melted the petrified water with hotter sparks. Whip up now ravening lions to the Indian War; fear not their elephants! For your Zeus ruling in the heights destroyed highheaded Campe with a thunderbolt, for all the many crooked shapes of her whole body.
§ 18.239 A thousand crawlers from her viperish feet, spitting poison afar, were fanning Enyo to a flame, a mass of misshapen coils. Round her neck flowered fifty various heads of wild beasts: some roared with lion's heads like the grim face of the riddling Sphinx; others were spluttering foam from the tusks of wild boars; her countenance was the very image of Scylla with a marshalled regiment of thronging dogs' heads. Doubleshaped, she appeared a woman to the middle of her body, with clusters of poison-spitting serpents for hair. Her giant form, from the chest to the parting-point of the thighs, was covered all over with a bastard shape of hard sea-monsters' scales. The claws of her widescattered hands were curved like a crooktalon sickle. From her neck over her terrible shoulders, with tail raised high over her throat, a scorpion with an icy sting sharp-whetted crawled and coiled upon itself.
Such was manifoldshaped Campe as she rose writhing, and flew roaming about earth and air and briny deep, and flapping a couple of dusky wings, rousing tempests and arming gales, that blackwinged nymph of Tartaros: from her eyelids a flickering flame belched out far-travelling sparks. Yet heavenly Zeus your father killed that great monster, and conquered the snaky Enyo of Cronos. Show yourself like your father, that I may call you also destroyer of the earthborn next to Cronides, when you have reaped the enemy harvest of earthborn Indians.
Your battle seems like his; for your father in the conflict with Cronos brought low that champion of warfare with towering limbs, that excellent son
§ 18.271 of the soil, Indus, whence the Indians are sprung: your father fought Indus, you fight Deriades. Show me yourself like Ares, for he also brought low such another, Echidna's son, the gods' enemy, spitting the horrible poison of hideous Echidna. He had two shapes together, and in the forest he shook the twisting coils of his mother's spine. Cronos used this huge creature to confront the thunderbolt, hissing war with the snaky soles of his feet; when he raised his hands above the circle of the breast and fought against your Zeus, and lifting his high head, covered it with masses of cloud in the paths of the sky. Then if the birds came wandering into his tangled hair, he often swept them together into his capacious throat for a dinner. This masterpiece your brother Ares killed! I do not call you less than Ares; for you could challenge all the sons of Zeus; since with your bloodstained thyrsus you are a masterpiece as much as Ares warring with his spear, and your exploits are equal to Phoibos.
Another destroyer of monsters, another son of Zeus I have entertained in my mansion. The other day Perseus came flying on wings to my house. He had lately left translucent Cydnos, the neighbour of Corycion, like you, my friend, and said he had marked out a newfounded city in Cilicia named after his own quick foot. He carried the head which had topped Gorgon Medusa whom no eye may see; and you carry the winefruit, that messenger of hearty
§ 18.297 good cheer, the oblivion of mortal sorrow. Perseus killed the sea-monster beside the Erythraian Sea, and you have brought low the race of Erythraian Indians. Slay Deriades as you slew Orontes the Indian, one worse than the sea-monster. Perseus saved Andromeda in her affliction, do you save by a greater victory the Virgin of the Stars, bitterly oppressed at the nod of wicked Indians, that I may offer one triumphal feast for Gorgonslayer Perseus and Indianslayer Dionysos. Having spoken thus, Bromios's host the luxurious king went back to his palace; and Dionysos thyrsus-mad was delighted to hear the spurring words of the royal voice. His ears bewitched with hearing of his father's battle, he was wild for a fight, he vied with Zeus, and wished for a third and greater future victory after the double defeat of the Indians, to rival Cronides. He summoned Pherespondos,' one swift like the wind, the offspring of the heavenly herald, the clever son of Iphthime, and greeted him with friendly words: Son of Hermaon, herald that I love, go take this message to proud Deriades: 'Prince, accept the gifts of Lyaios without war, or fight against Bromios and you shall be like Orontes!'
So he spoke, and the herald on swift shoes holding his father's rod travelled from land to land, until he made his way to the Eastern country. On a golden car, carrying the fruit of the vintage, the heartgladdening grape, he passed from city to city
§ 18.325 with devious feet, and filled all the Assyrian land with his fruit, as he offered to the countrymen the grapegrowing flower of the vineyard.
While in his gadabout winechariot he traversed the Syrian soil by the wing of Euros in the glowing east, death laid a hand on Staphylos. In the palace the servants tore the garments on their bodies, the attendants cried out in lamentation; breasts were beaten and reddened, the round cheeks of mourning women were torn with their nails as they sang the dirge.
It was late when Dionysos in his vinedecked car returned to Botrys's palace, remembering the amiable entertainment of Staphylos. Noticing the downcast looks of Pithos, he divined untold the fate of his friend Staphylos, proclaimed by the eloquent silence, and he called Methe and asked: Tell me, my lady, what trouble has changed your looks? I see you disordered, and I left you radiant. Who has quenched your unspeakable beauty? You show no longer the natural crimson glow on those cheeks once ruddy as wine! And you, ancient sir, hide not why you shed tears. Who has cut the flowing mass of your broad beard? Who has deranged that white hair? Who rent your garments? And you, son of Staphylos my friend, offspring of Methe your mother so fond of wine, why are your temples bare of the hair } What envious hand tore the curly locks? Your tresses no longer fall free over your shoulders, glossy like silver, breathing Tyrian frankincense, you no longer hold revel, your cheeks no longer emit a rosy sheen from your face.
§ 18.354 Why do you wear these robes soiled with streaks of dust? Why do I not see your royal robes of Tyrian purple? I no longer know you with this desolated countenance. Where has Prince Staphylos gone, pray let me know? Speak! who has robbed you of your father even for an hour? I understand your trouble, even if you try to hide it. I need no words from you, for your looks alone silently proclaim your mourning. I understand your trouble, even if you try to hide it. The tears reveal your pains, your disordered dress cries aloud the fate of Staphylos my friend. Envy has robbed me of my hope; for I did think that after the Indian War I should lift the evening torches in my hands, in company of King Staphylos, to wait on the consummated wedding of Botrys the comrade of my battles!
§ 19.1 BOOK 19
In the nineteenth, Bacchos sets up a delightful contest over the fragrant bowl about the tomb of Staphylos.
He spoke; and the lad sealed his lips with unvoiced silence, his mind heavy with the pangs of new mourning, and gave way to a helpless flow of tears. At last Methe his mother spoke a piteous word of greeting to Lyaios: Staphylos your friend, Dionysos, the sleepless watcher of your dances, has sunk in the brazen sleep: Staphylos your friend, Dionysos, Charon's winds have carried away. A double burden of sorrow fell on me: Bacchos of the vine deserted me, my husband fell into sickness, and I cherished one common pain for both, Staphylos dying and Lyaios far away. But give me, dear Bacchos, give me your cup full of your bubbling vintage; that I may drink, and lull my heavy sorrow with your sorrowconsoling wine! O Dionysos, my only hope, with your jubilant cry! Let me only see the vintage, let me see the bowl, and I shed tears no more!He heard her words with pity; he mixed, and in a cup gave the young man and the downcast
§ 19.19 mother that winejuice which resolves all cares and drives away all trouble. Both drank the honey-flowing stuff of the vintage with its mindsolacing drops. Me the and Botrys quieted their groaning pain; and then the woman spoke to Bacchos the heartenchanter: You have come to me, dear Bacchos, as a great light! Grief holds me no more, pain no more, now Dionysos has appeared! You have come to me, dear Bacchos', as a great light; for by your potion of healing wine I have quieted my tears. I mourn no more for husband, no more for a father's death, even Botrys I will give up if it be your pleasure; for I have Bacchos as father and son both, aye and husband. I will go with you even to your house, if it be your pleasure. I would join the company of Bassarids. If it be your will, I will lift your sacred gear and your lovely fruit, I will press my lips to the hoboy of the winepress. Leave me not a widow, that I may not cherish a double grief, my husband perished and Dionysos gone! You have Botrys for a servant. Let him learn the dances, the sacred rites and sacred things, and if you please, the Indian War; let me see him laughing in the inebriated winepress treading hard on the offspring of your vintage! Remember old Pithos, and leave him not untaught of your rites or without a share of your delicious wine.
She spoke; Lord Bacchos encouraged Methe with laughing face, and thus he said to the wineloving queen: My lady, giver of glorious gifts second only to golden Aphrodite, bestower of hearty good cheer, . . . the joy of man and the mother of love, sit at the feast beside Lyaios as he touches the feast!
§ 19.47 Be garlandbearer for Dionysos, even as Aphrodite, girdled with flowers and luxuriant clusters. The chaplets upon your hair shall make Victory jealous! I will make you pourer of wine, next after Hebe goldenthrone. You shall rise a satellite star for Lyaios of the vine, ever by his side to serve the Bacchanal cups, and man's joy, the surfeit of wine, shall bear your name, Methe. I will give the name of Botrys to the careconsoling fruit of my vintage, and I will call after Staphylos the carry berry bunch of grapes, which is the offspring of the gardenvines full of juicy liquor. Without Methe I shall never be able to feast, without Methe I will never rouse the merry revels. Such were his words. Then beside the tomb of reeling Staphylos, Dionysos the foe of mourning held a contest where no mourning was. He brought out a bearded goat and a vigorous bull and set them both as prizes, calling to the contest combatants well able to touch the harp in Pierian music; he set them both as prizes, and stirred up these athletes well acquainted with the melodious lute by making a courteous speech: Here we begin an Attic revel. I will give the glossy bull to the man who wins the victory, and the shaggy goat I will give to the loser. When Bromios had spoken, up sprang a harper, Oiagros, a man of the cold Bistonian land,' with the quill hanging to his harp. Hard upon him leapt up Erechtheus, a citizen of Attica the friend of music. Both moved into the midst of the assembly, com
§ 19.74 peting as drivers of the harp. They had entwined leaves of laurel in their hair, and girt up their robes. With wonted nimbleness, they began to twangle away, running their fingers over the tensed strings and plucking each in turn, then tightening the pegs at the end, to make sure that the pitch was not too high, and yet that it should not go flat and turn womanish the manly tune.
First the lot fell to Erechtheus of Cecropia; he twangled his harp, with a master's touch, for a song of his own country, and this is what he sang: How in divine Athens Celeos entertained Deo the mother of all life, with Triptolemos his son and ancient Metaneira. Then how Deo gave them the corn, when Triptolemos found out how to scatter showers of seed from his chariot laden with ears all over the furrowed soil. And when Celeos died, how harvesthome Deo lamented beside the newbuilt sepulchre with unweeping eyes, and consoling them again with heartenchanting words, quenched the heavy grief of Triptolemos and Metaneira. Even so the sceptred king of Assyria had entertained Dionysos in his palace, and the Lord had requited the table with his Euian gifts and the fruitage of the vine; then after Staphylos died, that tippling king, he took away the gloomy care of Botrys his son and soothed the sorrow of Methe his mourning wife.
Such was the lay of the harper poet, and all were alike enchanted with the music; they and the god with the thyrsus admired the Attic song with the lovely tones of the fit setting.
Second, my lord Oiagros wove a winding lay, as the father of Orpheus who has the Muse his boon
§ 19.102 companion. Only a couple of verses he sang, a ditty of Phoibos, clearspoken in few words after some Amyclaian style: Apollo brought to life again his longhaired Hyacinthos: Staphylos will be made to live for aye by Dionysos.
Before the ceremonial was well ended, the people broke out into loud acclamations of propitious words with one voice and one tongue, and all the Satyrs roared. Bacchos leapt from his seat in haste, waving his right hand up and down; Botrys ran up, crying Euoi and applauding the musical harmonies of the harper. The Lord crowned Oiagros's head with ivy, and the father of Orpheus stamped his foot on the ground, as he accepted with joy the untamed bull, the prize of the singing, while his companions danced round him in a row. The man of Athens carried off the bearded goat with shamed hands, full of sorrow and envy.
Now Iobacchos with flowing hair brought out worthy prizes in his generous hand, offered for victory in the woven dance: a mixer teeming with old fragrant wine, a golden bowl which held infinite measures, spilling on the thirsty earth Lyaios's juice of four years old. This was an Olympian work of Hephaistos the great master, which Cypris once gave to her brother Dionysos of the vine. A lesser bowl also he set before the assembly, solid silver, shining and round, which Bacchos had once received as a guestgift from the king of Alybe; who lived in the rich country where the black hole of the mines in the earth was whitened with silver nooks. Round the
§ 19.130 edge of the lip, on the bossy brim, was ivy twining over bunches of grapes in fine patterns of gold all round. This he brought and laid before them with deep belly still breathing the winepress, stuff of a younger vintage, must, a draught of unmated potation; for who would grudge a defeated man to drink of dew that cannot inebriate?
When Bacchos had laid his prizes before the company, he called out the masters of the dance with attesting voice:
Whoso shall contend circling with expert foot and win the match of nimble steps, let him take both the golden bowl and the delicious wine that fills it; but whoso staggers and totters on moving feet, and falls, and proves the worse dancer, let him accept the worse prize. For I am not like every one else. To the prizewinner who conquers in the dainty beating of the dance, I will give no shining tripod and no swift horse, no spear and corselet stained with blood of Indians; I make no summons to marksmen for straight throwing with the quoit; this is no race for speed of foot, no sharp spear cast at a distance. In honour of Staphylos, the dead king, a man who loved the dance, I celebrate the sportive steps he loved. I offer no prizes for wrestlers with straining muscles; this is no race for horsemanship, no games of Elis,' this is no course of Oinomaos with death for his goodsons. My turning-point is the dance, my starting-point the skipping feet, the beckoning hand, the pirouette, the nods and becks and glances
§ 19.156 of the expressive face, speaking silence, which twirls the signalling fingers, and the dancer's whole countenance.
When he had ended his speech, up rose horned Seilenos, and antediluvian Maron got up on heavy foot, with his eyes on the great mixer of shining gold: not because the golden was the better, but because this alone contained the oldest wine and the finest stuff, filling it to the brim. His passion for this lovely wine made him young again, and the Bacchic aroma was too much for his gray hair. He twirled his feet round testing his strength, to see if heavy old age had made his limbs forget how to dance. The old man tried to appease the soul of Staphylos by the words that poured sober enough out of his shaggy beard: I am Maron, comrade of Lyaios who cannot mourn. I know not how to shed tears; what have tears to do with Dionysos? Reels and jigs are the gifts I offer at your tomb. Accept me smiling: Maron knows no cares, Maron knows not groans, nor the burden of melancholy sorrow. He is the lovely lackey of Dionysos who cannot mourn. Be gracious to your Maron, even if you have drunk the water of Lethe! Grant me this boon, that I may drink that store of old wine, and let Seilenos drink the new stuff of a new vintage! I will dance for Staphylos after death, as if he were living, for I rate the dance above the steamloving table. For you I dance, Staphylos, both living and not breathing, and strike up a funeral revel. I am a servant of Bacchos, not of Phoibos, and I never learnt to sing dirges, such as Lord Apollo sang in Crete shedding tears for Atymnios the beloved. I am a
§ 19.185 stranger to the Heliads. I am alien to Eridanos,' not connected with Phaethon the charioteer who perished; I am no burgher of Sparta, I wear not the mourning flowers or shake the dainty petals of the lamenting iris. To-day, if you sit by the side of Minos as an equal judge, or if you possess the flowery court of Rhadamanthys, and pick your dainty way in the groves and meadows of Elysium, Usten to your Maron: instead of cups, without libation, I mouth out for you a drinkoffering full of sense. Be gracious to your Maron, and grant me a victory of wine, the victory to be famous among all! Then I will pour over your tomb the first spoils of my golden cups, the first lovely drops from the bowl after I win my prize for victory!So saying, Maron danced with winding step, passing the changes right over left, and figuring a silent eloquence of hand inaudible. He moved his eyes about as a picture of the story, he wove a rhythm full of meaning with gestures full of art. He shook his head and would have tossed his hair, but hair he had none; both head and face were bare. He did not what an old man of Titan blood might have done, show the Titan race in his speaking picture, not Cronos or Phanes more primeval still, nor the breed of Titan Helios as old as the universe itself: no, he left all the confusion of that ancient stuff — he depicted with wordless art the cupbearer of Cronides offering the goblet to Zeus, or pouring the dew divine to fill up the bowl, and the other immortals in company ever enjoying cup after cup.
§ 19.214 His poet's theme was the sweet potion. Aye, he danced also the maiden Hebe herself drawing the nectar; when he looked at the Satyrs, with voiceless hands he acted Ganymedes, or when he saw the Bacchant women, he showed them goldenshoe Hebe in a picture having sense without words.
So Maron sketched his designs in pantomime gestures, lifting rhythmic feet with the motions of an artist, as he trod the winding measures of his unresting dance. Then he stood still trembling, and watched with shifty eye who should beat whom, who would go home with the larger bowl full of wine.
Now Seilenos danced: his hand without speech traced the cues of his art in all their intricate mazes. This is what he acted with gesturing hands: how once a great quarrel arose between Gyrene's son and Dionysos over their cups, and the Blessed gathered together. There was no boxing, no running, no quoit in that contest: cups were the well-used tools ready for Phoibos's son and Dionysos, and a couple of mixingbowls, one containing old wine, one with the gift of the sprigloving bee all fresh. Gronides sat in the seat of judgement. The competitors had before them a luscious match for a honeydrop victory; cups were the tools; and like another Hermes with golden wings, lovely Eros himself came forward to preside in the ring, holding in one hand both ivy and an olive-branch. He offered to Bacchos the flowering ivy, to Aristaios the olive-branch like the garlands of Pisa,' the holy ornament of Pallas.
§ 19.242 First Aristaios made his mixture with the travail of the bee, and offered the immortals his mingled honey in the cup, a potion cleverly compounded; he passed the goblet to each in turn one after another, and made their hearts glad. But after a first taste of the bubbling liquid, surfeit came at once: a third cup was filled and declined, and they would not touch a fourth. They found fault with the honey for this quick surfeit. Then richly-clad Dionysos drew from his mixer, full of sweet drink, lifted two cups and offered one with each hand, the first to Cronides, the second to Hera, then a third goblet to Earthshaker his father's brother. Then he mixed for the gods one and all with Father Zeus; they were all delighted, except disconsolate Phoibos alone, who was jealous, and the god smiled as he handed him the goblet. They enchanted their minds with cups in great abundance; drinking made them thirstier than before, they asked again for more, and could not get enough. Then the immortals loudly cheered, and gave Bacchos the chief prize for his delicious potion of wine. And Eros the ever-out-of-reach, the conductor of the game, drunken himself, crowned the hair of Lyaios with a vine-and-ivy garland.
So horned Seilenos wove his web with neathanded skill, and his right hand ceased to move. Then fixing his gaze on the sky, he leapt into the air with bounding shoe. Now he clapt both feet together, then parted them, and went hopping from foot to foot; now over the floor he twirled dancing round and round upright upon his heels and spun in a
§ 19.270 circling sweep. He stood steady on his right foot holding a toe of the other foot, or bent his knee and caught it in his clasped hands, or held an outstretched thigh with the other leg upright, the heavyknee Seilenos! He lifted the left foot coiling up to the side, to the shoulder, twining it behind him and holding it up until he brought the sole round his neck. Then with a quick turn of the backswerving dance, he artfully bent himself over, face up, in a hoop, showing his belly spread out and curved up towards the sky, while he spun round and round on one unchanging spot. His head hung down as he moved, as if it were always touching the ground and yet not grazing the dust. So Seilenos went scratching the ground with hairy foot, restlessly moving round and round in his wild caperings.
At last his knees failed him; with shaking head he slipt to the ground and rolled over on his back. At once he became a river: his body was flowing water with natural ripples all over, his forehead changed to a winding current with the horns for waves, the turbulent swell came to a crest on his head, his belly sank into the sand, a deep place for fishes. As Seilenos lay spread, his hair changed into natural rushes, and over the river his pipes made a shrill tune of themselves as the breezes touched them.
But Maron crowned himself with the sweets of victory, and held in his arms the mixer stuffed with delicious wine; he took the silver bowl, the prize of Seilenos now a flood, and threw it into the river as a libation, where it intoxicated the currents of the dancing river. And so the place was named from the Mixer, and men still speak of the Euian water
§ 19.301 of murmuring Seilenos full of sweet drink. Then Maron addressed these words to the running stream: Maron does you no harm, Seilenos. I will cast the ruddy wine into you and call you the Cellarer. Accept your drink, tippler never satisfied, accept the silver bowl of Bacchos, and you shall have silvery eddies. Seilenos Twirlthefoot, you dance even in your current, you keep the spinning of your feet even in your waves, you revel still in your watery shape. Then be gracious to Bacchants and Satyrs and winegiving vintage, and guard the Seilenoi of your own race. Be generous to Maron who drinks no heeltaps, and let me never see that you still keep a secret grudge among the rivers. Rather let your waters increase the wine of Maron's vintage, and be of one mind with Dionysos even among the rivers.
Foolish one, who taught you to strive with your betters? Another Seilenos there was, fingering a proud pipe, who lifted a haughty neck and challenged a match with Phoibos; but Phoibos tied him to a tree and stript off his hairy skin, and made it a windbag. There it hung high on a tree, and the breeze often entered, swelling it out into a shape like his, as if the shepherd could not keep silence but made his tune again. Then Delphic Apollo changed his form in pity, and made him the river which bears his name.
Men still speak of the winding water of that hairy Seilenos, which lets out a sound wandering on the wind, as if he were still playing on the reeds of his Phrygian pipe in rivalry.
So you also have changed your shape by challenging one better than you, just like the earlier
§ 19.329 Seilenos. You must no longer seek a barefoot Bacchant for your bride as before, that Bacchant of the mountains with flowing locks; you have now for your pleasure the innumerable tribe of Naiads with flowing hair. Seek no longer the snaky wreaths of Lyaios; eels are what you have to do with, the wriggling travail of the streams, and instead of serpents there are fishes with close fitted speckled scales crawling in your streams. And if you have parted from Dionysos and his grapes, I hold you the happier; for you really make the grapes to grow! What more could you want, when you have after Bacchos now Zeus to feed your streams, the Father of all creation? Instead of your Satyrs you have your regiments of rivers; instead of the winepress you dance on the back of murmuring Ocean. Even in the waters you are like what you were: it is proper that Seilenos, once proud of his horned forehead, as a river should have the horned shape of a bull. So Maron spoke; and all wondered to see the winding waters of Seilenos the tumbling flood, the ever-turning river which was his very likeness.
§ 20.1 BOOK 20
The twentieth deals with the pole-axe of blood-thirsty Lycurgos, when Dionysos is chased into the fishy deep.
The Games were over; the Satyrs with Dionysos of the thyrsus spent the night in the opulent halls of Botrys. The Seasons of the vintage joined in the banqueters' revels: there was banging of drums at that supper, the panspipes filled the place with their shrill tones; the servers were busy ladling wine into the cups at the unresting feast, and the banqueters ever kept coaxing the servants to draw more wine. The Bacchant leapt high, waving her cymbals, while the hair of the dancing girl shook in the breezes without ribbon and without veil.
The vinegod called the wife of Staphylos, wiped away the dirt and adorned her with a wine-coloured robe. He cleansed broadbeard Pithos from the dirt which covered him, and threw away the mourning clothes soiled with smears of ashes, then dressed him again in a gleaming-white frock. Botrys lamented no longer or wetted his cheeks with helpless welling tears, but at Bacchos's bidding opened his scented coffers; as they opened, sparkling gleams came from robes covered with gems. From these he took out and donned the brilliant royal garb of Staphylos his
§ 20.21 father, steeped in purple dye, and joined Lyaios at table to touch the feast.
While they were amusing themselves, the star of evening rose and rolled away the light of dancedelighting day. The troops of banqueters one after another took the boon of sleep, on piles of bedding in the hall. Pithos entered one bed with Maron, with drops still on his lips of the fragrant potion from the nectarean winepress; and breathing out the same breath they intoxicated each other all night long. Eupetale the nurse of Lyaios lit a torch, and prepared a double bed strewn with sea-purple, for both Botrys and Dionysos. In a neighbouring room, away from the Satyrs and apart from Bacchos, the servants laid a golden bed for the queen.
A dream came to Bacchos — Discord the nurse of War, in the shape of Rheia the loverattle goddess, seated in what seemed to be her lionchariot. Rout drove the team of this dreamchariot, in the counterfeit shape of Attis with limbs like his; he formed the image of Cybele's charioteer, a softskinned man in looks with shrill tones like the voice of a woman. Gadabout Discord stood by the head of sleeping Bacchos, and reproached him with brawlinciting voice: You sleep, godborn Dionysos! Deriades summons you to battle, and you make merry here! Stepmother Hera mocks you, when she sees your Enyo on the run, as you drag your army to dances! I am ashamed to show myself before Cronion, I shrink from Hera, I shrink from the immortals, because your doings are not worthy of Rheia. I avoid Ares,
§ 20.50 destroyer of the Titans, his father's champion, who lifts a proud neck in heaven, still holding that shield ever soaked with gore; and I fear your sister still more, selfbred daughter of a father of fine progeny, unmothered child of her father's head, flashhelm Pallas, because Athena too blames Bacchos idle, the woman blames the man! Thyrsus yielded to goatskin, since once upon a time valiant Pallas holding the goatskin defended the gates of Olympos, and scattered the stormy assault of the Titans, thus honouring the dexterous travail of her father's head — but you disgrace the fruitful pocket in Zeus's thigh! Look how Hermeias and Apollo laugh — one brandishing two arrows yet stained with the gore of Iphimedeia's hightowering sons, the other holding the rod which destroyed the dead shepherd of many eyes.
Indeed I must leave my own heaven to avoid reproach for battleshy Dionysos. The Virgin Archeress denounces Dionysos the dancer, the friend of mountains, when she sees him leaving his thyrsus alone; she drives only a weak team of stags, she kills only running hares, she ranges the mountains beside Rheia of the mountains, and she denounces one who drives leopards and manages lions! I disclaim the house of my own son Zeus; for in Olympos I shrink from Leto, still a proud braggart, when she holds up at me the arrow that defended her bed and slew Tityos the lustful giant. I am tortured also with double pain, when I see sorrowing Semele and
§ 20.80 proud Maia among the stars. You are not like a son of Zeus. You did not slay with an arrow threatening Otos and hightowering Ephialtes, no winged shaft of yours destroyed Tityos, you did not kill that unhappy lover bold Orion, nor Hera's guardian Argus, the cowkeeper, a son of the earth so fertile in evil, the spy on Zeus in his weddings with homed cattle! No, you weave your web of merriment with Staphylos and Botrys, inglorious, unarmed, singing songs over the wine; you degrade the earthy generation of Satyrs, since they also have touched the bloodless Bacchanal dance and drowned all warlike hopes in their cups. There may be banquet after battle, there may be dancing after the Indian War in the palace of Staphylos; viols may let their voice be heard again after victory in the field. But without hard work it is not possible to dwell in the inaccessible heavens. The road to the Blessed is not easy; noble deeds give the only path to the firmament of heaven by God's decree.
You too then, endure hardship of every kind. Hera for all her rancour foretells for you the heavenly court of Zeus. She spoke, and flew away. The god leapt from his bed, with the terrible sound of that threatening dream still in his ears.
Bold Botrys also leapt up, and put on his tunic shooting gleams of the Sidonian sea, and slipped his feet into wellfitting golden shoes. He threw over his unwearied shoulders the royal robe of bright purple cloth, pinning it with a brooch; his father's proud girdle was round his loins and the sceptre in
§ 20.107 his hand. Satyrs yoked the panthers to the red car at the urgent bidding of Dionysos, Seilenoi uttered the warcry, Bacchant women roared, thyrsus in hand. The hosts gathered and marched line after line to the Indian War: Enyo's pipes resounded, the leaders arranged the battalions in their places. One mounted with an agile leap on the back of a furious bear, whipping the hairy neck as it rushed on its course; another astride on a wild bull gripped his two flanks with hanging feet, and pricked his hairy belly with his crook to guide the wandering course; a third rode on the back of a shaggy lion, and pulled the hair of his mane instead of a bridle.
So Botrys quitted his father's palace and estate, clad in his purple, and driving his chariot-and-four by the side of grapeloving Dionysos, with slaves following behind. Methe his mother was in a mulecart with silver wheels, and beside her was a whiterobed maiden Phasyleia, who guided the team, flicking a golden whip over the mules' necks. Pithos the broadhead followed behind in his own car, to serve both Botrys and Dionysos. Nor was he left without reward. Lord Bacchos took him away into Lydia, and there set him over a winepress teeming with the heady liquor, to receive the poured produce of the juicy vintage in vessels fit to hold wine. And so the name Pithos was given to the purple hollow of the vat, which to this day stands close to a winepress to receive the Euian gifts of Bacchos, a memorial of the ancient Pithos. If it had human voice it would bellow such words as these to the Satyrs when it heard the revel: I am Pithos, named after the old one, and here beside the winepress I receive the sweet juice
§ 20.138 of the garden-grapes. I was the servant of Assyrian Staphylos and Botrys; I was the old nurse who cared for them both as children, and I still carry them both upon my hips, as if they were still alive.
But this Lord Bacchos was not to do for a long time to come. Now he marched past Tyros and Byblos, and the wedded water of the scented river of Adonis, and the rocks of Libanos where Cyprogeneia loves to linger. He climbed into Arabia, and under the frankincense trees he wondered at the ridge of Nysa with its dense forest, and the city built on the steep, the nurse of spearmen.
There lived a bloodthirsty ruffian, the ferocious Lycurgos, a son of Ares and like his father in his own horrid customs. He used to drag innocent strangers to death against all right, and cut off with steel human heads, which he hung over his gateway in festoons. He was like Oinomaos and of the same age. Oinomaos kept his unhappy daughter unmarried in his house, without husband, growing old and yet unacquainted with wedded love, until Tantalides came scoring the highroad of the deep in Earthshaker's fourhorse chariot unwetted. Then came his race for a bride; then cunningminded Myrtilos got him a stolen victory, by making for the wheel a sham axle of wax to deceive — for he was himself in love with sorrowful Hippodameia and pitied her. So the race was useless: under the burning chariot of Helios the waxmoulded model grew warm in the heat, the shortlasting axle melted and shot off the wheel.
Lycurgos was one of the same kind. Often
§ 20.167 when he met wandering wayfarers at the crossroads with loads on their backs, he had them bound and dragged to his house, and then sacrificed them to Enyalios his father; they were cut to pieces with knives, and he took their extremities to decorate his inhospitable gates. As a man who returns at last spear in hand from war with his enemies, and hangs up in the hall shields or helmets as trophies of a new victory, so on the blood-stained portals of Lycurgos the feet and hands of dead men were hung. It was massacre: at the neighbouring altar of Zeus, the Strangers' God, groaning strangers were cut piecemeal like so many oxen and sheep, and the altars were drenched in the blood of the slain, the dust was spotted with red gore about the gates of the dwelling. The people under this tyranny made haste to sacrifice to Lycurgos instead of Zeus.
But you, Dionysos, did not escape the jealousy of trickstitching Hera. Still resentful of your divine birth, she sent her messenger Iris on an evil errand, mingling treacherous persuasion with craft, to bewitch you and deceive your mind; and she gave her an impious poleaxe, that she might hand it to the king of Arabia, Lycurgos Dry as' son.
The goddess made no delay. She assumed a false pretended shape of Ares, and borrowed a face like his. She threw off her embroidered saffron robes, and put on her head a helmet with nodding plume, donned a delusive corselet, as the mother of battle, a corselet stained with blood, and sent forth from her grim countenance, like a man, battlestirring menaces, all delusion. Then with fluent speech she mimicked the voice of Enyalios: My son, scion of invincible Ares, can it be
§ 20.197 that you too fear Bassarids and their tenderskin womanish threats? This is no new troop of Amazons from Thermodon,these are no warrior women of the Caucasus. They carry no swift arrows, they speed no shafts, they have no bold warhorse, nor over their shoulders do they hold the oxhide half buckler of the barbarians. I am ashamed to summon you to battle, when women cry havoc against Lycurgos who fears no havoc! Are you quiet, Lycurgos, while Dionysos is arming? He is a mortal abortion, not one sprung from heavenly stock. Son of Zeus — that is a fairytale of the Hellenes! I can't believe all that about Cronion's childbearing, how my father Zeus ruling on high brought forth a womanish son from his manly thigh! I believe no lying tales, that my Zeus who bore Athena has brought forth a mortal man! My Zeus never learnt how to give birth to a weakling son. Take the word of Ares your father. You have seen that Athena, the female child of Zeus, is stronger than Bacchos.
My son, you possess your own strength; you need not your father Enyalios.
if he is lord of war. Yet I will arm, if you wish, and I will not leave you in war alone; you shall have a goddess, if need be; Hera, sister and wife of Zeus, will go with you into battle to hold a shield before Lycurgos her grandson.
I will set up in your divine temple the rods of the Bassarids, their bastard spears. I will shear off the long horns unshaken from the oxhorned Centaurs, and make stronghorn bows for Arab archers, as it
§ 20.226 ought to be. I will cut off the long stretching tail from the Seilenoi, and make a hairy whip to beat horses. All these I will bring for you after the battle. But the yellow shoes of unwarlike Bacchos, and his woman's dress of purple, and the woman's girdle that goes round his loins, these I will keep for your sister-consort the seafoamborn, proper gifts for a woman. All the troop of attendants about womanmad Lyaios I will mate with my slaves in forced wedlock, without asking a brideprice, as it ought to be with captives of the spear. Those worthless plants of the gardenvine, the gentle gifts of Lyaios, fires of Araby shall receive with its hottest sparks!
Let the sturdy Bassarid, who served Dionysos in the mazes of the dance, learn a new and unfamiliar art: leaving the hills for a house, dropping the dappled fawnskin and covering her body with a shift, grinding corn with a round millstone. Let her throw off her garlands and the fruitage as they call it; let her learn to combine two common services, as bond-slave both to Pallas and Cythereia, with workbasket by day and the bed by night, handling the shuttle instead of Rheia's cymbals. Let the old Seilenoi sing Euoi beside my festal board, and instead of their usual Lyaios let them strike up a revel for Ares and Lycurgos.
So he spoke, and goldenwing Iris divine smiled to hear; then went her way, paddling in the false shape of a falcon.
Lycurgos took this vision as an omen of his
§ 20.25 victory; for he recognized that the swift bird beating murderous wings knew how to scare away the feeble doves. For he had seen, he had seen another such dream, how a maned lion in the woods with ravening throat all ready gave chase to the horned generation of swift deer. With this dream in his mind he made ready against the frenzied Bacchants, thinking the Bassarids to be like prickets unacquainted with battle, and felt greater boldness than before. And Iris, by Hera's command, put the winged shoe on her feet, and holding a rod like Hermes the messenger of Zeus, flew up to warn Lyaios of what was coming. To Bacchos in corselet of bronze she spoke deceitful words: Brother, son of Zeus Allwise, put war aside, and celebrate your rites with Lycurgos, a willing host. Let battle be, slay not your friends, do not refuse peace! Be gracious to the gentle; who will vanquish a humble man? Do not stir up strife against those who ask you for mercy. Do not cover your body with a starspangled corselet; do not enclose your head in a crestlifting helmet; do not entwine your hair with a garland of serpents. Leave your bloodstained rods behind; take your familiar staff and a horn full of your delicious wine, and offer Euian gifts to Lycurgos who loves the grape! Now dress your body in your unblooded tunic, now let us make melody for a dance without corselet, and let your army remain quiet near the shady wood that it may not offer battle to a peaceful king. No, put on your head the garland that you love; go in joy to the open house of Lycurgos ready to welcome, go in revel like a bridegroom, and keep your Indianslaying rods for disobedient Deriades. You know
§ 20.285 King Lycurgos has no coward soul. He is the son of Ares with the blood of Zeus in him; in battle he shows the inborn prowess of Enyalios his father, nor would he shrink from combat with your Cronion himself.
So she cajoled him, and the shoes carried her high into the air. Dionysos deceived by the goddess threw aside his battlestirring rods, and doffed the plumed helmet from his hair, and laid down his starspangled shield. In one bare hand he carried a vessel full of the purple juice, his pointed horn with the cheerful grape; he twined his unplaited hair with vine-leaves and ivy. His host under arms and his battlestirring women he left near Mount Carmel with the team of lions, and himself walked on foot to the festival in holiday garb without weapon. The panspipes sounded a cheeryheart melody of banquet, the double pipes whistled a friendly note, the Bassarid waved the Euian tambourines of Lyaios and skipped before the gateway of Lycurgos.
The bold king heard the jubilation of the dance, the hoboy's note and the Berecynthian tune and the noise of the panspipes, he saw the round tambourine beaten on both sides, and he was furious. When he beheld the winegod near his porch, he laughed in scorn, and hurled an implacable threat against the leader of the Bassarids, in mocking words:
Do you see these offerings hung up before my mansion? You too, my friend, give me some decoration for my house, your thyrsus or feet or hands or bloody head. If you have horned Satyrs at your command, horned Bacchos, I will strike you all down with my poleaxe like cattle! There is my hospitable gift for you, that gods and men may tell
§ 20.317 how the gates of Lycurgos were festooned with the mutilated limbs of Dionysos. I am no Boiotian king, this is not Thebes, this is not Semele's house, where women have labour by thunderclap and bring forth their baseborn children by lightning. You brandish a vinebound thyrsus, I wield a poleaxe; and I will cleave your oxforehead down the middle, and break off your curved horns!
With these words, he beat the nurses of Dionysos with his poleaxe and chased them away; and the dancing women — one shook Rheia's cymbals from her palm, one put down the tambourine from her rattle-loving hands, another shot away her bunches of grapes, another fell with the cups of nectar; many threw down melodious panspipes and Athena's breathing hoboy to roll over each other in the dust. As after storm, near the peaceful woods, a shepherd sees the delightful season of cloudless Phaethon, and wakes a revel while the Nymphs join his dance; then suddenly the water comes rolling from the rocks and the waves are piled up as the river pours down from the mountains, the whistler throws the pipes out of his hands, fearing the bold flood of the river in torrent lest it overwhelm the sheep with swollen stream — so Lycurgos scattered the happy jubilant dancers, and drove the Bacchants unchapleted to the high hills; he pursued them in no dancing fashion, that disbanded army of women; and in his armour of bronze, carrying the sharp poleaxe, Hera's treasure, he made war upon Bacchos unarmed. Now
§ 20.346 the cruel stepmother bore hard on Lyaios — invincible Hera thundered loud and made him quake; the knees of Bacchos trembled, as the jealous resentful goddess armed herself on high. For he thought Cronion was fighting for Lycurgos, when he heard the thunderclaps rolling in the heavens. He took to his heels in fear and ran too fast for pursuit, until he plunged into the gray water of the Erythraian sea.
But Thetis in the deeps embraced him with friendly arm, and Arabian Nereus received him with hospitable hands, when he entered within the loudresounding hall. Then he comforted him with friendly words, and said: Tell me, Dionysos, why are your looks despondent? No army of earthborn Arabs has conquered you, no pursuing mortal man, you fled from no human spear; but Hera, sister and consort of Zeus Cronides, has armed herself in heaven and fought on the side of Lycurgos — Hera and stubborn Ares and the brazen sky: Lycurgos the mighty was only a fourth. Often enough your father himself, the lord of heaven ruling on high, had to give way to Hera! You will have all the more to boast of, when one of the Blessed shall say — Hera consort and sister of mighty Zeus took arms herself against Dionysos unarmed! So speaking, Nereus tried to console Bacchos. And while Dionysos was hiding in the bright waves, Lycurgos indignant shouted aloud to the water —
I wish my father had taught me not war alone, but how to deal with the sea! Then I would take a
§ 20.374 turn at the fishermen's game, and fish for Dionysos, and drag this Lydian out of the bosom of the deep to land again for my servant! But since I have not learnt the work of seafaring fishers, and know nothing of the tricks of hunting in the deep with a cunning mesh of nets, you may have Leucothea's house in the watery deep, until I can dislodge both you and Melicertes as they call him, another of your kin. I want no steel for that, or this merciless poleaxe which belongs to the land. I want fishermen, to dive into the depth of the Erythraian brine and drag Dionysos from his refuge in the sea.
Ho Fishermen! searchers of the haunts of Nereus! Spread not your nets for the denizens of the deep, but haul out Dionysos in the meshes! Let Leucothea be caught along with Lyaios, and let her come back to the land; let bold Palaimon come with them to my house, let him dry his body and be slave to Lycurgos! Then he may leave the courses of his seabred horses round Ephyreia, and yoke my car beside a terrestrial manger, he and Bacchos grooms together. Let there be one house — one house for both, Palaimon and Dionysos.
Thus full of fury he railed at the sea, and hoary Nereus, and wished to flog the deep. But Father Zeus cried aloud to Lycurgos in his raging —
You are mad, Lycurgos, you challenge the winds in vain! Away on your feet, while your eyes can still see! You have heard how a while ago by a trickling spring in the mountains Teiresias only
§ 20.401 saw Athena naked — he lifted no furious spear and made no attack on the goddess, he only saw, and yet lost the sight of his eyes. Such was the rebuke of Zeus who rules on high, spoken through the air when he saw the outrageous impiety of Lycurgos.
§ 21.1 BOOK 21
The twenty-first contains Earthshaker's wrath, and the man-breaking battle of Ambrosia, and the Indian ambush.
Nor did Dryas' son forget the first combat. He seized the poleaxe, and a second time went in search of the troops of Bassarids in the forest. But heavenly Zeus gave courage and warlike boldness to Ambrosia, and then possessed of a wave of wild madness she raised a stone and hurled it at Lycurgos, knocking off the ponderous helmet from his locks. But he boldly attacked with a larger stone all jagged, and drove at the chest of the soft-eyed nymph. He did not overthrow her however, and he cried out in rage — Ares, lord of war, father of strong Lycurgos ! Can you see without shame your son attacking a weak unarmed woman, instead of Lyaios? The sea is too strong for my poleaxe, for Dionysos was hidden in the waves; I have had my journey in vain, and Twill return to my own city, and leave my task unfinished. He spoke, and seizing Ambrosia round the waist he held her fast in his limb-compressing hands; he wished to throw her into bonds and to drag her to his
§ 21.20 house like a captive foreigner, to drive off a nymph from the company of Bromios's nurses, pricking her slave's back with the doubleheaded poleaxe. But she stood, and he could not drag her away, nor could he smash her skull in a mess of blood. Saffronrobe Ambrosia fled the bold man and prayed to Mother Earth to save her from Lycurgos. And the Earth, mother of all fruits, opened a gulf, and received Ambrosia the nurse of Bromios alive in a loving embrace. The nymph disappeared and changed her shape to a plant — she became a vineshoot, which of itself coiled its winding cord round the neck of Lycurgos and throttled him with a tight noose, battling now with threatening clusters as once with the thyrsus.
Rheia indignant gave a voice to the plant, that she might show her favour to Dionysos king of gardenvines; so Ambrosia uttered a breathing voice and shrilled high and loud: Never will I cease to fight with you, plant though I am! Even as one of the world of plants I will wound you! I have no brazen chain, but I will choke you with inextricable leaves! I will attack you although a vine, that people may say — Bassarids kill murderers, even when they are part of the world of leaves! ' You have to fear even vegetable warriors, for vines can shoot their enemies, and grapes can stab them! I fought you alive, and dead I will vanquish you. See how the nurses of Dionysos play the heroes! Have you heard of the seafish called holdtheship, how in the sea a little weak
§ 21.47 creature has often attacked a crew, pulls back their vessels, and with a small gaping mouth holds up a long freightship firm and fast? Here I am, your holdtheship on land! Here are my leaves, with a selfacting fetter not made of steel, for the battle of the valiant vine! Stand, I say, stand and wait for the son of Thyone, when he shall return from the bosom of the sea!So cried Ambrosia out of the vine with her grapy voice, whipping Lycurgos with her long foliage; and the wild man caught in the fresh green bonds, immovable, smothered all round in the galling fetters of leaves which he could not tear, roared defiance against Dionysos. He had no strength to escape; in vain he shook his throat wound about with the tiny tendrils in strong constraint. His voice could find no ferry through the gullet throttled with wreathing growths. The Bacchant women thronged round him, his neck confined in the middle of the stifling clusters.
Spearmaster Ares caught up his son's frightful axe; for he feared that the mad Bacchants might strike the body of Lycurgos with that bloody poleaxe; but he did not release Dryas' son from the leafy bonds, much as he desired to do it — he gave way on hearing the threatening sound of Zeus's thunder, and at the flash of his father's lightning.
Polyxo threw herself upon the head of the raving man, and tore out long locks of hair by the roots. She laid a furious hand on the belly of her foe, seized the corselet, wrenched it off with predatory force, burst it in her rage — declare, O warrior
§ 21.74 Muses! what a wonder that a woman's nails should tear apart this gear, made of steel though it was! — Cleite with hair flowing free had plaited a twining rope of withies, and Gigarto of the vines, with the whip of twigs, scored the body of Lycurgos with red bleeding weals over the torn shoulders. Phleio scratched the sole of his foot with bunches of thorns, maddened dreadfully. Eriphe the companion of Eiraphiotes clutched at the man's hairy throat, with a mind to throw him back on the ground. Phasyleia the leader of the Bacchanal dance, fought and scratched the enemy's flank with a sharp spike. Theope Lyaios's nurse armed herself with a skintearing fennel. Bromie, who bore the name of Bromios, also beat the body of Lycurgos; and with them Cisseis, that grapeloving nymph, flogged the man with ivy.
So Lycurgos was tormented by the warring plants; but now a trouble appeared worse than any. For Rheia of the mountains armed against Arabia the seagod, Earthshaker who splits the foundations of the earth with a crash, and hurls them about. Then Earthshaker the ruler of the sea struck with his trident, and knocked away the great bar which held up the wide floor of the land, while the caverns of the earth were beaten by internal winds, subterranean winds, for blasts in the hidden parts hollow out grinning chasms with moving shock. The unshakable soil of Arabia quaked, cloudcapt palaces were dissolved by the shattering shock; trees fell to the earth, and the firm ground about Arabian Nysa struck by the trident shook and danced. The elm lay on the
§ 21.103 ground, the laurel's leaves were in the dust, the pine self-uprooted lay beside the fir.
While Earthshaker with wild subterranean blasts shook the roots of the hollows and caverns below, a new calamity came: the woodranging Nysian women, lashed by the whip of dragonhair Megaira, bellowed like bulls and murdered their children. One would rush forward and throw her boy flying into the air, sliding headlong from the air into the dust. Another dragged her own baby along the ground, and forgot the breast. Another stained her hand with childslaying steel, and carved her son like another mad Agaue. So they rushed on their own children, the newborn sons whom they had brought forth, and cut them piecemeal with the knife.
Beside them the Arabian shepherd crouching under Pan's whip ran amok among the animals.
So the oxherd, seething by the god's maddening device, carved up his children, and feasted on his own sons with child-devouring jaws: the belly of delirious drovers was the tomb of their own boys, whom they should have cared for. All the while Lycurgos was beaten by the Nymphs' hands. He was fast bound with many knots of leafage smothering him. Yet he bent not a knee before Lyaios, held not out a hand to Zeus for mercy in his extremity, feared not the thunder, but glared with fury at the Bassarids. He saw the lightning flash against his head, and would not yield to Lyaios. Blows fell on him from all sides, but he stood unmoved
§ 21.131 by all this impetuous onslaught of innumerable blows, facing alone Zeus, Poseidaon, Rheia, Earth, Nereus, Bacchos, with only Ares to help him; and in his pain he shrieked out unbridled defiance;
Make fire, let us burn all this stuff, let all these Bacchic leaves lie in the flames! Let us throw the blazing gardenvines into the sea for Dionysos in the deeps, to show the courage of Arabs! Let Thetis herself catch the scorched fruit in the waves, and quench the burning viny ashes in the sea! Loose these phantasms, this cunning witchery of bonds! I see here witchery of the Nereids and Poseidon. Loose me and bring me to the sea! I will take arms against this prophet-wizard Proteus. Light a torch, that I may go down to the sea in my avenging wrath, and set fire to Melicertes the entertainer of Bromios!So he spoke, threatening Nereus and Dionysos.
Now Hera came to Arabia, and saved the afflicted son of Enyalios from the leafy battle. She held the iron sword of Ares, and bared the flashing blade of the divine glaive over the Bacchants, scattering in flight the army of Cybelid women. She cut through Ambrosia's leaves with that iron, and untied the bonds of the vine from Lycurgos. She soothed her brother, Seabluehair Earthshaker, and Zeus her husband and Rheia her mother, to save Lycurgos that he might be numbered with the immortals.
For the Arabs on heavy-steaming altars propitiated Dryas' son as a god with offerings, pouring to Lycurgos, who
§ 21.160 cared nought for Bacchos, libations of blood, instead of the honey dripping vintage of Dionysos.
All this Old Time was to accomplish in later days; but now, in order that no other mortal man should be proud like spearbold Lycurgos, and ridicule Dionysos whom none may ridicule. Father Zeus made mad Lycurgos a blind wanderer; to tramp round and round in the city which he no longer knew, to seek some guide for the path where he must tread, or often on lonely travels with stumbling feet.
That is what was done on the mountains. But in the Erythraian sea, the daughters of Nereus cherished Dionysos at their table, in their halls deep down under the waves. Mermaid Ino threw off her jealousy of Semele's bed divine, and struck up a brave hymn for winepouring Lyaios. Ino the nurse of Dionysos made music; and Melicertes his fosterbrother ladled out nectar from the bowl, and poured the sweet cups for his age-mate.
So he remained in the hall deep down in the waves, with the broad main for his dwelling, a visitor under the waters, and he lay sprawled among the seaweed in Thetis s bosom; he embraced never satisfied Cadmos's daughter, Ino his nurse, mother of a noble son, sister of his own mother, and often he held in the loving prison of his arms Palaimon his yearsmate, his foster-brother. The Mimallon with quiet shoe no longer trod the noisy turns of the dance, for Bacchos was not there; she was hunting for tracks of Lyaios now under the sea. The Satyr so full of energy showed a face unsmiling, and languished in sorrow strange to him. The Pans wandered wild through the woods with hillranging hoof, Pans in search of Dionysos,
§ 21.191 and heard no word of him. Seilenos danced no more, threw away his cymbals unheeded, lay with downcast looks. Cronian Macris the nurse of nevermourning Dionysos trilled her lament, she who used to share the basket of the well-spoked car of Bacchos. So they were all restless and sad. But Scelmis left the caves of the waveless deep, and drove his father's unwetted car, to tell them the tidings in their sorrow that Dionysos was coming back.
While Bacchos enjoyed the hospitality of the sea, the windfoot courier of vineplanting Bromios traversed the Caucasus mountains to the Indian city. He had the shape of a bull, a borrowed form bearing horns, the very image of the horns of Selene; the skin of a mountain goat was thrown over his body, and hung over one shoulder from the collar-bone draping his right side down to the fork of the thigh; he shook a pair of long ears like the ears of an ass beside his two cheeks, and he was covered with hair, with a self-wagging tail that grew out from between his loins.
The swarthy Indians crowded about him laughing, until he approached the place where huge Deriades, that king of men, sat in his chariot-andpair. He checked the steps of his towering elephants, and laughing spoke to the Satyr in words of raillery:
What doubleshaped men bullform Dionysos sends to Deriades! what playthings for a soldier! Monsters, not creatures having a wholly human shape! They have the form of beasts! for with a
§ 21.220 double shape they are bastards, bulls and men at once — they have the bull's body and the man's face.
So he spoke, and made the summoning signal for war, by striking a hearty blow with his sword upon the round boss which was seen in the middle of his richly-ornamented shield: the metal struck boomed out a sound of havoc from the oxhide.
Then the swiftcoursing herald of Bromios opened his amazed lips, and gave his message to the grim king:
Deriades, sceptred king, the god Dionysos commands the Indians to accept the wine of his careforgetting vintage, and to pour libations to the immortals, without war, without battle. If they refuse, he takes up arms, until Hydaspes bend a servile knee to the wands of the Bassarids. You have heard a truthful message: now give some answer to my address, which I may deliver to Dionysos.
When he had done, the monarch roared in a furious voice: Ha, what a word the bold man-beast has spoken! It would be shameful to strike down a herald with violent hand, one who comes without valiant spear and holds no oxhide shield. I have heard the exploits of your chief: Ganges has heard the weakness of Bromios and the manly courage of Lycurgos. I know your king, the bastard god, when he fled and slipt into the deep for refuge from destruction. Yes, your Bacchos is called the fiery, because he rose from flanks of his mother Thyone struck by Zeus; and water is stronger far than fire. My father Indian Hydaspes, if it be his pleasure, could quench the fiery breath of the thunderbolt of Zeus with his bubbling flood.
' Turn your foot, if you please, to the marches
§ 21.249 of the Median land; go there and proclaim the dances of Dionysos. Pass into Bactrian soil, where Mithras is a god, the Assyrian Phaethon of Persia; for Deriades has learnt no dances of the eternal Blessed, he honours not Helios and Zeus or the company of shining stars. I know nothing of Cronos, or of Cronides who destroyed his father, nor Cronos the master-deceiver, who swallowed his own children, and shore away from Aither the hive of begetting love. I do not acknowledge your gifts, what you call your vintage; I accept no other drink than golden Hydaspes. My wine is the spear, my potion too the shield! No Semele brought me forth in firestruck bridal, or received the flames of death in her chamber; but my breeding came of Enyo in brazen armour, who never has surfeit of battles. I care nothing for the blessed offspring of Zeus; for me there are only two gods. Earth and Water.
Go and give this answer to battleshy Dionysos. Go untouched, and evil go with you; go before I draw my bow, go with a curse if you would escape my spear! Arm for battle your half-and-half beasts and your uncorseleted women, and fight with Deriades! Then after our Indian victory I will drag you away along with Dionysos, the captive of my spear. But I will not make you my envoy. You cannot do such service in the house for me, but I will allow you to fan me at my table with your long ears.'
This said, he dismissed him with threatening looks, after quickly scribbling this message within a tablet with two folding sides:
§ 21.277 Take arms against Deriades if you can, Dionysos. Such words as these the loudvoiced herald heard, and departed. He found the Seilenoi in high glee: Dionysos had come up out of the waters and joined the Oread Nymphs. The Satyrs skipt, the Bacchants danced about, Maron with his old legs led the music between two Bacchants, with his arms laid round their necks, and bubbles of fragrant wine at his lips. The Mimallon unveiled trilled a song, how the footstep of Dionysos had come that way again.
Then the vinegod threw off his earlier cares, and entered upon rejoicing; for he had heard in the sea the whole story from Torone's lord Proteus, the earthshaking shock in Arabia the inhospitable, and how Lycurgos wandered blind with stumbling feet. He heard also the deathbringing madness of the herdsmen's duress, how the company of countrymen went raging about, how the women in the dells gorged the fruit of their own travail; heard also of the company of Hyades in heaven, heard that Ambrosia had left earth and risen as a star in Olympos, Ambrosia who had attacked undaunted Lycurgos, the battle of the twigs and the war with vines.
They were enjoying themselves as the herald came back, safe and sound, and greatly desired by Bacchos rejoicing. He reported the highnecked folly of Deriades, and carried the double tablets pregnant with war.
The Lord lost no time. He read the lines engraved on the witnessing tablet, and resolute, he summoned his warriors to the fray. He called the
§ 21.306 Rhadamans, whom Minos once sent on their wanderings unwilling from the land of Crete to the Arabian soil; and bade them by Rheia's advice to build wooden ships for an attack upon India by sea. Quickly he drove his car to the eastern clime of the earth, gleaming in his armour like the Morning Star, crossed over the rocky crest of Caucasus and through the valleys, and over the lightbringing region of the dawnland he went on towards the midday goal of the sun.
When Deriades heard the rumour of battle with the thyrsus, that the army of mountainranging Dionysos was near at hand, he stationed in ambush his Indians in serried ranks, and sent a detached force across the river, resting all hope for the conflict in the craft and skill of bronze-armoured war. He rowed all these men on shipboard across Indian Hydaspes. So the Indian host was divided into two armies, one on each bank of the river bristling with lances. Thureus was on the edge of the West Wind, Deriades opposite by the wing of the burning East Wind.
There was on the spot a shady place, where the rocks were surrounded by a wide mass of all kinds of trees and left an empty hollow. No wandering arrow in flight could pierce those trees, if one were shot, and the sun never came down through the midst of those thick branches with sharp thrust, cutting the closewoven leaves with penetrating rays; no deluge of rain from heaven falling through the air passed into those woodland shades, but the showers of Zeus on high scarce wetted the surface of the leaves with their rushing water. There in the spinneys an ambush was hidden among the tall
§ 21.337 trunks covered with green clusters of highgrowing leafage, unexpected, unshaken, and in the bosom of the forest kept noiseless its moving shoes. No hidden foot tore the leafy bushes, none feared a crouching foot, or sounds of words upon a chattering lip, or pallor on the face; but each had a mind bold and firm, and enjoyed his measured sleep on the ground in his armour with eyelids . . ., waiting for the march in step of the enemy at hand.
§ 22.1 BOOK 22
The twenty-second celebrates the battle and feats of Bromios, all the deeds of Aiacos both on the plain and in the Hydaspes.
When the footforces of Bacchos came to the crossing of the pebbly river, where, like the Nile, Indian Hydaspes pours his navigable water into a deepeddying hollow, then sounded the womanish song of the Bassarids, making Phrygian festival for Lyaios of the Night, and the hairy company of Satyrs rang out with mystic voice. All the earth laughed, the rocks bellowed, the Naiads sang alleluia, the Nymphs circled in mazes over the silent streams of the river, and sang a melody of Sicilian tune, like the hymns which the minstrel Sirens' pour from their honeytongued throats. All the woodlands rang thereat: the trees found skill to make music like the hoboy, the Hadryades cried aloud, the Nymph sang, peeping up halfseen over her leafy cluster.
The fountain, though but water, turned white and poured a stream of snowy milk; in the hollow
§ 22.18 of the torrent the Naiads bathed in milky streams and drank the white milk. The rough rock spilled out wine from red nipples, and stained itself deep, as the must welled over the unplanted hill in showers sweet to drink; the pleasant gifts of the honeydropping bee dribbled from holes of themselves without need of hives; from newsprouting bushes of spikyhair thorn sprang up softbloom apples; oil poured of itself on the twigs of Athena's tree, and bathed it in unpressed drops.
Hares embraced the dancing dogs; long serpents joined in the merry dance, curving down their heads and Hcking the footprints of snakehair Dionysos, and one after another blew out gentle hisses from glad throats; there was method in the movements of the happy reptiles, as the interlacing coils of their long spines skipt about Dionysos on fearless feet. Tigers jumped round and round in play on the Indian precipices; a great swarm of hillranging elephants went skipping in the forest glades.
The Pans then, roaming about the craggy ravines sped on nimble hooves through the trackless hills; in terrible places, where even that light traveller the bird would not dare to fly, or traverse with his pair of beating wings in his lofty course. The lion shook the mane hanging about his jaws, and danced in partnership with the tripping boar. Birds squawked an image of human speech, and borrowing the warcry half mimicked, they prophesied victory in the Indian struggle, and shook the tail straight out along
§ 22.49 their green bodies. The panther dancing with equal spirit, leapt high with a bear for partner. Artemis checked the rush of her swift hounds, when she saw the romping leaps of a lioness now tame, and slackened for very shame the string of her bended bow, that she might not shoot the happy beasts with her arrows.
One there was watching the strange miracles of Bacchos, as he peered out through the top of a thick cluster. He made a round spyhole through the leaves; he let himself see just so much as a man sees when he looks out of the eyeholes made in his helmet; or when a man trained in the tragic chorus utters a terrific roar from his far-resounding throat, and strains his eyesight within through the eyepiece made in the mask which he carries as a deceitful likeness of a man's face. So this man hiding under the dark bushes watched all the miracles unseen with furtive gaze. He told all to the enemy. Thureus shook with fear, and blamed Morrheus and Deriades for their thoughtlessness: the Indian host trembled, and thinking no more of combat, threw the bronze weapons from frightened hands when they saw the trees moving under the maddening influence.
And now the Indian host would have plucked from the neighbouring banks green shoots of olive in token of supplication, and bent a servile neck before Dionysos unconquerable. But Hera ever ready took another shape, and gave courage to the enemy. She deceived the Indian leader; she fastened on Dionysos a song of magical Thessalian spells, and
§ 22.77 Circe's posset with invocations of the gods, as if he had poisoned that unpoisoned river. She convinced the enemy, quite ready to be convinced, and told each one not to let himself be driven by fiery thirst to drink of the adulterated water of the mind-stealing river, and so come to grief.
And now the swarthy Indians would have leapt from their hidden ambush and attacked the army of Bacchos at their meal; but a Hamadryad Nymph peering over a high branch sprang up, leafy to the hips. Holding thyrsus in hand, she looked like a Bacchant, with bushy ivy thick in her hair like one of them; first she indicated the enemies' plot by eloquent signs, then whispered in the ear of Lyaios of the grapes: Vinegod Dionysos, lord gardener of the fruits! Your plant gives grace and beauty to the Hadryads! I am no Bassarid, I am no comrade of Lyaios, I carry only a false thyrsus in my hand. I am not from Phrygia, your country, I do not dwell in the Lydian land by that river rolling in riches.
I am a Hamadryad of the beautiful leaves, in the place where the enemy warriors lie in ambush. I will forget my country and save your host from death: for I offer loyal faith to your Satyrs, Indian though I am. I take sides with Dionysos instead of Deriades; I owe my gratitude to you, and I will pay it, because your Father, mighty Zeus of the raincloud, always brings the watery travail of the rivers, always feeds the trees with his showers of rain. Give me your leaves, and here I will plant them; give me your clusters of grapes which drive our cares away!
§ 22.106 But my friend, do not hasten to cross the river, or the Indians, who are near, may overwhehn you in the water. Direct your eye to the forest, and see in the leafy thickets a secret ambuscade of men unseen hidden there. But what will those weaklings in their thickets do to you? Your enemies live so long as you still hold back your thyrsus. Silence between us now, that the enemy near may not hear, that Hydaspes may not tell it to the hidden Indians.
When she had said this, the Hamadryad Nymph went away again quick as a wing, quick as a thought; and changing her shape to look like a bird she sped through the secret wood, down upon the oak her yearsmate. But Bacchos silently mingled with the Bassarids, and told the divine Hamadryad's tale into each captain's ear with nods and glances. By silent signs he ordered them to take their meal under arms among the trees, and explained the secret plot of the plot-stitching Indians. They must not let the fighting men overwhelm them unarmed and still at meat in their ranks. They did as Lyaios bade them, and sat down to their food in silence ready for battle, with spears on the table.
After a hasty meal they hurried under shields to the river near by, to drink water after the food, by divine command of prudent Dionysos, who did not wish winebibbing and slumber or darkness to put his army to bed. So the army tumbled here or there in the bed of war, to enjoy a short sleep upon the soldier's shield. And Father Zeus thwarted the tricksy plan of the Indians, and prevented their nightassault, by a loud peal of thunder and torrents of rain which made a great noise all night long.
§ 22.136 But when Dawn rent the darkness with feet of snow, and plucking the morning grew purple upon the streaming rocks, the enemy darting all together beyond the sheltering borders of the forest, burst out to waken the battle. Their leader was Thureus, that prodigious chieftain of India's war, with a rush like towering Typhon when he attacked the thunderbolt. The army of Bacchos, by the astute orders of their skilful leader, feigned flight though unafraid, and retreated from the battlefield of their own will, until the Indians had left their hidingplace and poured over the plain.
The Lydian warrior was armed in rich harness, like Lycian Glaucos shining in gold, sounding the fame of his country, where wealth sparkles bright and red through the water that flows between Pactolos's banks; he flashed with rosy gleams in the face of day, shaking the yellow front of his precious helmet, that Lydian warrior conspicuous, and from his breast the corselet he wore flashed gleams of ruddy light. Another chieftain from Alybe, a valiant champion for Dionysos, showed forth his country's wealth, as he poised the shining helmet upon his temples, and the shimmering sheen of a silver morion was reflected from his head for all to see, shooting a lustre like the snow-white moon.
The restless god himself scattered all the enemy troops, holding no naked sword, poising no spear, but passing like the wind through the front ranks, circling from left wing to right in the fray, striking with his thyrsus instead of a long lance, cleaving the cloud of Indians with flowers of the field, with ivy-rod for spear. Highheaded Thureus, great as
§ 22.166 he was, could not drive him back, nor another champion, nor the army; but sprawling over each other they gave way in every part before the rush of Dionysos.
Oiagros also beat back the swarthy fighting, insatiable, reaping the ranks of men in swathes, as he cut the harvest of flashing helms with Bistonian blade. As a torrent pours its stormy strength unceasing from the mountains in floods through the ravines, and comes rushing over the plain, where not even the enclosures can hold it with their impregnable walls, and it bursts midway through the masses of stone bridges: many a pine goes rolling, many a tall fir falls torn by the roots and hurried down by the flood — so he dealt with the enemy host, killing the footmen one after another in heaps with Sithonian pike. Now they came around him, and built what soldiers call a mimic tortoise with their shields: foot stood firm beside foot, shield leant on shield side by side, layer before layer pressing close, plume nodded to plume, man touched man in serried array, the dust rose under the horses' hooves and the warriors were whitened.
Here whom first, whom last did Oiagros send to Hades, as the man of Bistonia sliced them down, killing one after another, doing deeds that needed Calliopeia his consort, to tell them! One he struck above the nipple with darting spear, one with hilted sword in the neck; another furious foe he pierced in
§ 22.194 the navel, drew back his spear from the bleeding wound, and as he pulled, dragged out the bowels hot after his gory steel. When another showed fight he drew sword and ran upon him, cut the wrist with the sharp blade, and the hand fell bleeding and wriggling and jumping on the ground: or a hand was cut off, but did not loose the shield, but still clutched the end of the strap down in the dust, while the dead man's soul flew off on the wind longing for the youthful strength of the familiar body which had been bound up with it. Another he destroyed with a blow of his unsparing spear, piercing the shouldertop with the sharp point, then struck the shield with his sword — the steel struck the oxhide in the middle with a clash, but it did not break.
So he went on wild with the madness of battle, wielded his spear in all directions with masterly skill, right and left flank, over the neck, across the shoulder, darted the ever-returning point this way and that way, until he cut through the front of the dense combat, full of energy as he sat on his horse with flying mane. As after the dark season of freezing winter the air shows free of the covering clouds, and takes the clear light of shining spring, so this inspired fearless man routed the dense ranks of broken Indians, and made a bare space in the middle of the fray.
Then in the front ranks, one drove his blade at another's mouth and struck the right cheek with the terrible sword. Here a stone cast against the enemy soared high to its mark, whizzing through the air; the stone fell from the air and crashed upon a head, knocking off the crest of a plumed helmet and snapping the neckstrap under the chin — the helmet
§ 22.225 went rolling away and the man's head was bare. Then not only men roared battle, but even the armoured horses joined in the noise, trumpeting Ares with bellicose whinny: and maiden Echo after-sounding answered the din of their hillranging throats with her stony lips, and whinnied too — mimicking their warlike notes.
Many a corpse newly slain rolled over the fields, spitting out a hot stream of blood. Of the dying, some lay on their sides and died, one with belly torn open turned over on the wound, another rolled in the dust which was scattered on the ground, another died leaning upon his middle, this one trod upon the head of a man gasping on the ground, that one wounded in the throat fell with a groan and moved his feet about in a dance of death. Another lay on his face, and as if venting his rage on the slayer, opened his mouth and bit the earth with mad teeth. Another had been struck with a long steel blade, and his white tunic was red from a jet of gore. Another, as he fought, was shot in the thigh by a winged arrow from the bows drawn at him, and covered with blood.
There was one of the enemy who pressed his trumpet to his lips in vain, and sounded the call to attack, hoping to bring back into the battle his cowardly shrinking host. The Indians hearing the call poured back to the fray, and boldly began a new conflict, ashamed to appear without victory before their king.
A large company of warriors in panoply drove Aiacos apart, and surrounded him there. He stood
§ 22.255 in the midst at their mercy; no helmet nor shield nor corselet could have saved him from that assault, but Athena built all round him a defence in place of steel, his father's impregnable clouds, the same clouds which once had quenched the drought of the soil, and brought lifegiving water upon the thirsty earth, when Zeus sent the rain, so that the fertile furrows of sheafbearing earth were wedded to the plow. Thus the inspired man, surrounded by enemies, destroyed some with quickdarting spear, some with sword, some with jagged stones; the ground was red with the blood of slain Indians, and the corpses lay scattered in heaps by the blade of the unshaken man. One panted half-dead, one hammered the earth with his feet and rolled over helpless on his back, holding converse with fate his neighbour. They crowded the place, corpse lying as if fitted on corpse in rows, and cold bodies were warmed by the red gore from throats newly cut, endless carnage. As they fell and fell. Earth darkened with pouring streams of blood lamented her sons, and cried with a torrent of words —
Son of Zeus, beneficent butcher — for you are lord of the fruitbearing rain and the deluge of blood! With rain you did irrigate all the productive orchards of Hellas, with gore you have deluged Indian furrows! Once stockbearing, now deathbearing! Your deluge found corn-ears for the farmers, now you have reaped the Indian host, men like a ripe harvest! You do both — bring rain from Zeus, and shower blood from Ares!
§ 22.284 So cried Earth, the mother of life. But Cronion sounded from heaven, the trumpet of Zeus called Aiacos to the slaughter of Indians with thunderclaps. There one of the enemy fixed his eye on Aiacos and let fly a shot: the arrow just grazed his thigh so as to scratch the skin, but Athena turned it aside. Aiacos felt no pain, and fought still more without ceasing among the Indians, after the arrow touched his thigh, like the light touch of a man's nail which just scratches the skin.
One man got away on foot uncaught, running at full speed, and wished to get into the coppice not far off where he had been hidden before; but Erechtheus pursued him riding a windfoot horse. When he had caught him up so close that a frontfighter could aim his flying lance for a straight throw, the man turned about and faced him, awaiting the horseman on foot. He bent his knee, and planted his left foot on the ground turning sideways, lifted his right foot and stretched it behind, stiffened the toes of his right foot and pressed them firmly into the ground. He carried a sevenhide Indian shield like a tower, he carried a sharp naked sword; holding the bronzeplated shield before his face the brave Indian faced his foe, ready to die or strike the man or pierce the horse with daring sword. As he came on the footman from one side struck up at the horse's cheek with a knob of steel and unsettled the man above on his back, and he would have thrown the citizen of unmothered Athena; but Erechtheus struck him with a spear by his midnipple-tip, and with sharp-slaughtering bronze pierced the man through the middle and sent him flying till he fell
§ 22.316 through the air to the ground, slipping headforemost, and rolled over and over in the dust, and with a somersault took a header like a tumbling clown. There the Athenian left him in convulsions, and turned back his horse to attack other enemies.
(Oiagros was still fighting.) He bent his bow, fitted a shaft to the string, and drew it right back to the tip of the iron and let fly at the mark, trusting all hopes of victory to his bride Calliopeia, mother of a noble son. Nine longbarbed arrows he shot, nine men he slew — one number for the arrows let fly and the warriors killed. One flying shaft pierced a forehead, one cut the round of a hairy breast, another fell on a flank, another upon a belly and dug deep into the hollow middle. Again one went through a side, another caught a running man on the sole of his storming foot and nailed the foot close fastened to the earth. Again he drew back a windswift shaft: and from that quiver another flew, and a shower of arrows went one after another hurtling through the air. As when a man hammers metal on a smith's anvil, and rings the fiery clinks with unwearied sledge beating the mass below, the sparks leap out in showers, spurting when the iron is struck, and heat the air; under blow after blow first one goes up then another, one leaps after another and catches it leaping in its fiery course: so he shooting at the Indian host before him scattered the warriors with arrows without respite, slaying on all sides with the incessant shafts. The centre of the line gave way before this
§ 22.348 cloud of arrows and a space was left clear, like the crescent moon when it shines dim at either horn and fills the two ends with new-lighted sheen, marking off the middle of the orb with receding beams, and the two horns apart gleaming softly, but the middle orb of the moon marked off is yet seen to be bare.
Nor did Aiacos slacken fight, that fearless ally of Dionysos, but he moved furious in the fray killing here and killing there; he chased the people away from the plain and drove them into the river flood. The warriors gathered around him, alone in their midst, struck by their swords and not caring for sabrestroke nor winged shot. With incessant swoops he reaped the iron harvest of black battle, that stirring hero, and fought them all, slaying some on the banks, some down in the river with battling hand. He filled the whole stream with corpses; white Hydaspes turned red, boiling with the blood of the slain. One man to escape the champion, rushing like the wind, dived of himself, tumbling into the stream; many a corpse newly slain by that darting steel was carried floating upon the billowy flood with swollen limbs. The blood ran deep, and the Naiads washed in gory water, the black water reddened with clots of blood. Many threw away their spears in the river and offered supplication unarmed, this on the bank, that stretched on the sand, one again on land kneeling upright and bending an arched neck. But Aiacos threw up his head refusing their prayers, and let his unbending wrath grow against his adversaries. Not one Lycaon
§ 22.379 alone did he slay, a warrior unarmed and still praying for mercy; but innumerable enemies he destroyed, rolling over and over on the earth with unweaponed hands, and defiled the running river: many a dead Asteropaios Hydaspes received.
Not without God's help Aiacos also fought. As befitted the father of Peleus, he slew his enemies in the river, a watery battle, a conflict among the waves, as if to foretell the unfinished battle for Achilles in time to come at the river Camandros: the grandfather's battle prophesied the grandson's conflict.
And a Naiad Nymph in the river unshod, unveiled, peeped out of the stream and cried —
Kinsman of the Naiads! with the blood of Zeus in your veins! Pity the holy water of the river that fell from Zeus! Indians enough your spear has destroyed. Cease to call for the tears from the tearless Naiad Nymphs! A Naiad of the water was your own mother; yes, I hear that your Aigina was a river's daughter. Think who brought you forth, and you will no longer defile a river. I will go away to another stream, one without stain, I will go down to the sea, and seaborn Thetis is ready to receive me. Let this river of blood be the care of Erinys and Dionysos.
§ 23.1 BOOK 23
In the twenty-third I sing Indian Hydaspes crossed, and the affray of water and fire.
So spoke the Nymph, the Naiad of the waters, and soaked in blood plunged into the bloodstained water of her father. But Aiacos drove the barbarian hordes along the banks into the flood, striking with his sword; the enemy pursued by the steel died in their rout and choked the river Hydaspes. Many a one in the flood stretched legs and arms in the manner of swimmers, and tried to escape his fate by cutting the stream with inexperienced hands, yet he was swallowed in the water; one upon another swollen big with water there found a floating grave.
But Aiacos had not long to wait on the bank of the shieldstrewn river, surrounded by all that multitude of deadly foes, for Dionysos Indianslayer was beside him at his need, shaking the sharpened wand. Then Aiacos laid low a great host besides, piercing them with unsparing spear; furious as Ares he was by the side of his corseleted brother Dionysos.
Then Dionysos joined with him in the watery battle, and brought a drowning death to his foes. If some man swam by cutting through the waves on his wellmade shield, he thrust him through the back as he swam. If an Indian showed fight half under
§ 23.22 water and standing on the mud, he struck breast or neck with his wand, wading in among the drowning men; for he knew the deep bosom of the waters, ever since he fled from the murderous attack of Lycurgos, and ancient Nereus had entertained him in his billowy dwelling. Many on this side and that plunged into the stream in fear of the hillranging son of Zeus. One stood upright with feet held firmly in the slimy mud, selfstuck, immovable, half-visible from loins to head; then lifting the hidden fork of the thigh he fought better against Bromios in water than on land, for he cast two lances from his two hands; one he let fly towards the bank, sending it up high, with Aiacos as his target, who was approaching; the other he poised and threw at Lyaios the invulnerable. Another stood firmly, covered to midbelly; and he could not escape, but the sharp wand struck him as he dragged his clogged feet through the fettering mud, and his soles were stayed in the sands. There was another, stopt by a wound in the calf; the river just reached his knee, and fought a wet warfare through the bloody water. Another rooted to the bottom was submerged over the chin, and tried to lift his feet so as to get a shoulder clear of the water, trying to escape the terrible flood which dashed in his face. Others with the whole body covered from the toes to the middle of the chest, or with both shoulders in the wet, or with red on the hair of his head,' awaited the threatening attack
§ 23.50 of the waves. Another with wet lips palpitating and grinning teeth sank into the deathdealing stream.
Some proud Indian seeing his companions killed by long spear or sword, struck by a missile rock, pierced by the sharp leafwrapt thyrsus-wand, pointed out to Thureus the heaps of corpses — then in anguish tore his hair, bit his lips deep and was dumb, wild with blazing indignation. Born of barbarian blood and bred in barbarian manners, he quickly followed the example of Indian Orontes and killed himself. Baring his sword, he stript off the corselet, that impregnable defence in battle which kept off the missiles, and undismayed set the blade to his flank, as he uttered a last proud speech before the quick stroke of death: Belly, receive this friendly sword! I should be ashamed if I were killed by some unnatural unwarlike hand. I myself drive a willing blade into my own side, that my father may not reproach me brought low by a womanish wand, nor call Satyr or Bacchant my slayer!
As he spoke, he thrust the sword down into his darkskinned belly with resolute hands, as if he were piercing a stranger, and died self-slain, another Menoiceus among his foes, ashamed to look again upon Deriades after this battle; died a willing death with tearless eyes, and showed himself a brazen Aias but that he was not mad.
The carnage was infinite; Hydaspes covered
§ 23.77 the dead with his reluctant flood, and became their tomb. Then one within the river cried out his last reproach:
' You too, father! why do you drown your sons? I have often made war against Bactrians, but Median Araxes never destroyed a Median army. Persian Euphrates never drowned his neighbours, the Persians. Often I have had war under the Tauros, but Cydnos never made his bosom the tomb of Cilicians in war. Tanais never arms icy petrified waters against the Sauromatians on his banks, but often attacked their enemies the Colchians with torrential war, and laid them low with his frozen armament. Eridanos was happier than you, in that he swallowed a foreigner, Phaethon in his flood, not one of his own people; he drowned no Gaul, he entombed no Celt, but brings wealth from his trees to the friends who live near him as he rolls along the brilliant amber gifts of the Heliades. Iberian Rhine does indeed attack his own sons, but as a judge, when he marks off the illicit offspring of his race and kills the stranger-brat; but you swallow up the lawful sons of your own perishing people — you drown no bastard blood. How dare you mingle with other rivers, with your Father Ocean himself and Tethys your mother, rolling down a flood of gore in bloody streams? Have some [10l] reverence, do not pollute Poseidon with dead bodies. Your river is worse than Bromios, his wands do not beat me so hard as your waves beat me!As he spoke, he received the last water, which brought him unhappy fate.
The river was full of armour. The swollen bodies were floating in crowds: the helmet under way half visible, sinking little by little and crest trailing on the water, its owner lost. Leathern shields sailed along flat, tossing upon the waves in rows here and there, their long slings afloat like ships' hawsers. Here a man is dragged down to the depths in his soaking garments by the weight of his corselet and his arms.
Dionysos would never have recalled his men from the battle, if he had not killed that whole army with his fleshpiercing wand, leaving only one to tell the news that all were dead. Thureus alone he left to be a godfearing witness of the victory.
But when Hera perceived the carnage and devastation of the Indians, she flew from heaven, and quickly along the path on high scored the air with wind-swift sole. In Anatolia she alighted, and drove Indian Hydaspes to stir up bloody strife against Dionysos.
When Eastern Ares of barbarian speech had bent the knee, then the company of Bacchoi was fashioning all sorts of machines of navigation and crossed the tranquil waves. The god led them in his landchariot, driving this makeshift vessel over the flood, while the panthers trod the water of Hydaspes without wetting a hoof. The armies made their voyage over a waveless river, one rowing a strongbound Indian raft, one steering a skiff along the
§ 23.131 watery path, some native boat of networking fishermen which he had seized. Another played the mariner under strange pretences. He lashed together a number of logs with workmanlike knots, and made the timber roots and all serve as a freighter without rudder, without sail, without oars, asking no help from speed-the-ship Boreas — for he held his spear upright and plunged it under water into the deep pools: so navigated the spearpunting shipman of a watercrossing host. There was another new kind of navigation, and another sham boat, when one cut the waters, dry on a floating shield, with the sling for painter, and so pursued his shieldshaking course.
The cavalry also marched into the river; the horses swam with their feet while the riders sat on their backs. As the horse swam a wet journey with his agile feet, only his neck rose high and dry out of the water as he carried the rider aloft upon his flanks.
Next came the doughty footmen who had no boat. They filled swelling skins with artificial wind, and on these leathery bags crossed Indian Hydaspes, while the skins teeming with wind bore them along.
Now Parrhasian Pan crossed the surface of the calm river on his goat's feet; Lycos guided the horses of the sea in his father's fourhorse chariot unwetted; and Scelmis drove across the waveless river along with Damnameneus his brother. Some one else leapt on the back of a bull and made him march into the river quick as the wind, guiding him on his way with his crook, as the beast scored the quiet water with his hooves. The old Seilenoi went
§ 23.160 voyaging on the deep paddling Hydaspes with foot and hand.
Now old Hydaspes poured out a gushing cry, and shouted for help to a watery brother, as he uttered these menacing words from his manyfountained throat: Lazy brother, how long is your stream to crawl in silence? Rear your waves, and overwhelm Dionysos, that we may swallow his host of footmen under the waters! It is a disgrace for you and me when the warriors of Bromios pass through my flood with unwetted shoes. You also, Aiolos — grant me this boon, arm your stormy winds to be champions against my foes, to fight with the Satyrs, because their host has marched through the waters and made a highroad of Hydaspes for landchariots, because they drive a watery course through my stream! Arm your winds against my ferryman Lyaios! Let the Satyrs' host be caught in the flood, let my river receive the chariot, let the charioteers be rolled in my flood, let the riders be swallowed in the mad waves! I will not suffer this unnatural passage to be unavenged: for both you and me it is a disgrace, when the warriors of Bromios have made a path for footmen and drivers high and dry! . . . I will destroy the water-traversing lions of Dionysos!
Tell me, why was my river made a highway? Why does the Naiad in the watery depths of my flood hear whinnying, why does the horse's hoof crush the fish's back? I am ashamed to mingle with other rivers, when women cross me with unwetted shoes. Never have Indians been so bold as to scrape my
§ 23.190 streams with towering chariots, never has Deriades scored his father's water with his huge equipage, seated on the nape of highcrested elephants!
As he spoke, he curved his own stream, and leapt upon Bacchos with a volley of foaming surf. A storm of watery trumpets bellowed from the battling waves; the river moaned as it raised the water high, battling against the Satyrs. Amid the roaring tumult, the Bassarid in her rich garb shook the cymbals out of her hands, swung her feet round, shook off the yellow trusses of the stitched shoes from her paddling foot, while the windswept waves rose to the head of the swimming Bacchant and drenched her curling hair. Another overwhelmed threw off her soaking robes, and gave her fawnskins to the swelling water, as the mass of the curving stream rolled over her chest, black against the rosy nipple. A Satyr paddling the flood with his hands waggled his wet tail straight out through the water. Maron carried swiftly along by the rushing water, paddled the drunken feet of his old legs, and left in the waves his leather bottle full of delicious wine. The syrinx of Pan was floating on the surface and rolling of itself on the waves, tossed about beside the double pipes; the hair of shaggy Seilenos flowed over his neck and jumped about in rivalry.
The river moaned, dragging the mud in its rush and pouring its alien water yellow over the land, a challenge to watery war for Dionysos. The tumultuous flood, met by a counterblast of wind, piled up high as the clouds and soaked the air, as it leapt down upon Dionysos with foaming surf. Not so