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The reconciler-bowl went round the board,
THE LAST PARTING OF
HECTOR AND ANDROMACHE:
SIXTH BOOK OF THE ILIAD.
Hector returning from the field of battle, to visit
Helen his fister-in-law, and his brother Paris, who had fought unsuccessfully hand to hand with Menelaus, from thence goes to his own palace to see his wife Andromache, and his infant son Aftyanar. The description of that interview is the subject of this translation.
THUS having faid, brave Hector went to
see His virtuous wife, the fair Andromache. He found her not at home; for she was gone, Attended by her maid and infant fon, To climb the steepy tower of Ilion :
From whence, with heavy heart, she might fur
But he, who thought his peopled palace bare,
yield; Swiftly the pass’d, with fear and fury wild ; The nurse went lagging after with the child. 25
This heard, the noble Hector made no stay; The admiring throng divide to give him way; He pass’d through every street, by which he
came, And at the gate he met the mournful dame.
His wife beheld him, and with eager pace 30 Flew to his arms, to meet a dear embrace :
His wife, who brought in dower Cilicia's crown,
The royal babe upon her breast was laid ; Who, like the morning star, his beams display'd. Scamandrius was his
gave, From that fair flood which Ilion's wall did
lave : But him Aftyanax the Trojans call, From his great father, who defends the wall.
Hector beheld him with a silent smile: His tender wife stood weeping by the while : 45 Press’d in her own, his warlike hand she took, Then figh’d, and thus prophetically spoke.
Thy dauntless heart (which I foresee too late) Too daring man, will urge thee to thy fate : Nor dost thou pity, with a parent's mind, This helpless orphan, whom thou leav'st behind ; Nor me, the unhappy partner of thy bed ; Who must in triumph by the Greeks be led : They seek thy life, and, in unequal fight With many,
oppress thy single might: Better it were for miserable me To die, before the fate which I foresee. For ah! what comfort can the world bequeath To Hector's widow, after Hector's death?
Eternal forrow and perpetual tears Began my youth, and will conclude my years : I have no parents, friends, nor brothers left; By stern Achilles all of life bereft. Then when the walls of Thebes he overthrew, His fatal hand my royal father New; He New Aetion, but despoild him not; Nor in his hate the funeral rites forgot; Arm'd as he was, he sent him whole below, And reverenc'd thus the manes of his foe : A tomb he rais’d; the mountain nymphs around Inclos’d with planted elms the holy ground. 71
My seven brave brothers in one fatal day To death's dark manfions took the mournful
way ; Slain by the fame Achilles, while they keep The bellowing oxen and the bleating sheep. 75 My mother, who the royal fceptre sway'd, Was captive to the cruel victor made, And hither led; but, hence redeem'd with gold, Her native country did again behold, And but beheld : for foon Diana's dart, In an unhappy chace, transfix'd her heart.
But thou, my Hector, art thyfelf alone My parents, brothers, and my lord in one.
Ver. 82. But thou,] In the interview between Hector and Andromache, both Pope and Dryden have omitted an epithet which they perhaps looked on as otiofum epitheton. I will cite the Greek passage:
'AMA"Exlop cú mos égoi walimp, rj acoluce unlag,