Aeneid

Virgil

Vergil. Aeneid. John Dryden. trans.

  1. The brothers Pandarus and Bitias,
  2. of whom Alcanor was the famous sire,
  3. on Ida born, and whom Iaera bred
  4. in sacred wood of Jove, an oread she,
  5. twin warriors, like their native hills and trees
  6. of stature proud, now burst those portals wide
  7. to them in ward consigned, and sword in hand
  8. challenge the foe to enter. Side by side,
  9. steel-clad, their tall heads in bright crested helms,
  10. to left and right, like towers, the champions stand
  11. as when to skyward, by the gliding waves
  12. of gentle Athesis or Padus wide,
  13. a pair of oaks uprise, and lift in air
  14. their shaggy brows and nodding crests sublime.
  15. In burst the Rutules where the onward way
  16. seemed open wide; Quercens no tarrying knows,
  17. nor proud Aquiculus in well-wrought arms;
  18. Tmarus sweeps on impetuous, and the host
  19. of Haemon, child of Mars. Some routed fly;
  20. some lay their lives-down at the gate. Wild rage
  21. o'erflows each martial breast, and gathered fast
  22. the Trojans rally to one point, and dare
  23. close conflict, or long sallies o'er the plain.
  1. To Turnus, who upon a distant field
  2. was storming with huge havoc, came the news
  3. that now his foe, before a gate thrown wide,
  4. was red with slaughter. His own fight he stays,
  5. and speeds him, by enormous rage thrust on,
  6. to those proud brethren at the Dardan wall.
  7. There first Antiphates, who made his war
  8. far in the van (a Theban captive's child
  9. to great Sarpedon out of wedlock born),
  10. he felled to earth with whirling javelin:
  11. th' Italic shaft of cornel lightly flew
  12. along the yielding air, and through his throat
  13. pierced deep into the breast; a gaping wound
  14. gushed blood; the hot shaft to his bosom clung.
  15. Then Erymas and Merops his strong hand
  16. laid low: Aphidnus next, then came the turn
  17. of Bitias, fiery-hearted, furious-eyed:
  18. but not by javelin,—such cannot fall
  19. by flying javelin,—the ponderous beam
  20. of a phalaric spear, with mighty roar,
  21. like thunderbolt upon him fell; such shock
  22. neither the bull's-hides of his double shield
  23. nor twofold corselet's golden scales could stay
  24. but all his towering frame in ruin fell.
  25. Earth groaned, and o'er him rang his ample shield.
  26. so crashes down from Baiae's storied shore
  27. a rock-built mole, whose mighty masonry,
  28. piled up with care, men cast into the sea;
  29. it trails its wreckage far, and fathoms down
  30. lies broken in the shallows, while the waves
  31. whirl every way, and showers of black sand
  32. are scattered on the air: with thunder-sound
  33. steep Prochyta is shaken, and that bed
  34. of cruel stone, Inarime, which lies
  35. heaped o'er Typhoeus by revenge of Jove.
  1. Now to the Latins Mars, the lord of war,
  2. gave might and valor, and to their wild hearts
  3. his spur applied, but on the Teucrians breathed
  4. dark fear and flight. From every quarter came
  5. auxiliar hosts, where'er the conflict called,
  6. and in each bosom pulsed the god of war.
  7. When Pandarus now saw his brother's corse
  8. low Iying, and which way the chance and tide
  9. of battle ran, he violently moved
  10. the swinging hinges of the gate, and strained
  11. with both his shoulders broad. He shut outside
  12. not few of his own people, left exposed
  13. in fiercest fight but others with himself
  14. he barred inside and saved them as they fled;
  15. nor noted, madman, how the Rutule King
  16. had burst in midmost of the line, and now
  17. stood prisoned in their wall, as if he were
  18. some monstrous tiger among helpless kine.
  19. His eyeballs strangely glared; his armor rang
  20. terrific, his tall crest shook o'er his brows
  21. blood-red, and lightnings glittered from his shield
  22. familiar loomed that countenance abhorred
  23. and frame gigantic on the shrinking eyes
  24. of the Aeneadae. Then Pandarus
  25. sprang towering forth, all fever to revenge
  26. his brother's slaughter. “Not this way,” he cried
  27. “Amata's marriage-gift! No Ardea here
  28. mews Turnus in his fathers' halls. Behold
  29. thy foeman's castle! Thou art not allowed
  30. to take thy leave.” But Turnus looked his way,
  31. and smiled with heart unmoved. “Begin! if thou
  32. hast manhood in thee, and meet steel with steel!
  33. Go tell dead Priam thou discoverest here
  34. Achilles!” For reply, the champion tall
  35. hurled with his might and main along the air
  36. his spear of knotted wood and bark untrimmed.
  37. But all it wounded was the passing wind,
  38. for Saturn's daughter turned its course awry,
  39. and deep in the great gate the spear-point drove.
  40. “Now from the stroke this right arm means for thee
  41. thou shalt not fly. Not such the sender of
  42. this weapon and this wound.” He said, and towered
  43. aloft to his full height; the lifted sword
  44. clove temples, brows, and beardless cheeks clean through
  45. with loudly ringing blow; the ground beneath
  46. shook with the giant's ponderous fall, and, lo,
  47. with nerveless limbs, and brains spilt o'er his shield,
  48. dead on the earth he lay! in equal halves
  49. the sundered head from either shoulder swung.
  1. In horror and amaze the Trojans all
  2. dispersed and fled; had but the conqueror thought
  3. to break the barriers of the gates and call
  4. his followers through, that fatal day had seen
  5. an ending of the Teucrians and their war.
  6. But frenzied joy of slaughter urged him on,
  7. infuriate, to smite the scattering foe.
  8. First Phaleris he caught; then cut the knees
  9. of Gyges; both their spears he snatched away
  10. and hurled them at the rout; 't was Juno roused
  11. his utmost might of rage. Now Halys fell,
  12. and Phegeus, whom he pierced right through the shield:
  13. next, at the walls and urging reckless war,
  14. Alcander, Halius, and Noemon gave
  15. their lives, and Prytanis went down. In vain
  16. Lynceus made stand and called his comrades brave:
  17. for Turnus from the right with waving sword
  18. caught at him and lopped off with one swift blow
  19. the head, which with its helmet rolled away.
  20. Next Amycus, destroyer of wild beasts,
  21. who knew full well to smear a crafty barb
  22. with venomed oil; young Clytius he slew,
  23. son of the wind-god; then on Cretheus fell,
  24. a follower of the muses and their friend:
  25. Cretheus, whose every joy it was to sing,
  26. and fit his numbers to the chorded Iyre;
  27. steeds, wars, armed men were his perpetual song.
  1. At last the Teucrian chiefs had heard the tale
  2. of so much slaughter; and in council met
  3. are Mnestheus and Serestus bold, who see
  4. their comrades routed and the conquering foe
  5. within the gates. Cries Mnestheus, “Whither fly?
  6. What open way is yonder or what wall?
  7. Beyond these ramparts lost what stronger lie?
  8. Shall one lone man here in your walls confined,
  9. make havoc unavenged and feed the grave
  10. with your best warriors? 0 cowards vile!
  11. For your sad country and her ancient gods
  12. and for renowned Aeneas, can ye feel
  13. no pity and no shame?” Enflamed to fight
  14. by words like these, they close the line, and stand
  15. in strong array. So Turnus for a space
  16. out of the battle step by step withdrew
  17. to make the river-bank his rearguard strong;
  18. whereat the Teucrians, shouting loud, swept on
  19. the fiercer, and in solid mass pressed round.
  20. as when a troop of hunters with keen spears
  21. encircle a wild lion, who in fear,
  22. but glaring grim and furious, backward falls,
  23. valor and rage constrain him ne'er to cease
  24. fronting the foe; yet not for all his ire
  25. can he against such serried steel make way:
  26. so Turnus backward with a lingering step
  27. unwilling drew, and wrath his heart oterflowed.
  28. for twice already had he cloven a path
  29. into the foe's mid-press, and twice had driven
  30. their flying lines in panic through the town.
  31. But now the whole throng from the camp he sees
  32. massed to the onset. Nor will Juno now
  33. dare give him vigor to withstand, for Jove
  34. had sent aerial Iris out of heaven
  35. with stern commandment to his sister-queen
  36. that Turnus from the Teucrian walls retire.
  37. Therefore the warrior's shield avails no more,
  38. nor his strong arm; but he is overthrown
  39. by general assault. Around his brows
  40. his smitten helmet rings; the ponderous mail
  41. cracks under falling stones; the haughty plumes
  42. are scattered from his head, nor can the boss
  43. of his stout shield endure; the Trojans hurl
  44. redoubled rain of spears; and with them speeds
  45. Mnestheus like thunderbolt. The hero's flesh
  46. dissolves in sweat; no room to breathe has he;
  47. his limbs are spent and weary; his whole frame
  48. shakes with his gasping breath: then bounding fort
  49. with all his harness on, headlong he plunged
  50. into the flowing stream; its yellow tide
  51. embraced him as he fell, and gentle waves
  52. restored him smiling to his friends in arms,
  53. with all the gore and carnage washed away.