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Great Telamon from Eacus derives
His birth (th' inquifitor of guilty lives
In fhades below; where Sifyphus, whofe fon
This thief is thought, rolls up the restless heavy stone,)
Juft acus the king of Gods above
Begot: thus Ajax is the third from Jove.
Nor should I seek advantage from my line,
Unless (Achilles) it were mix'd with thine:
As next of kin Achilles' arms I claim;
This fellow would ingraft a foreign name
Upon our stock, and the Sifyphian feed
By fraud and theft afferts his father's breed.
Then must I lose these arms, because I came
To fight uncall'd, a voluntary name?
Nor fhunn'd the cause, but offer'd
you my aid,
While he long lurking was to war betray'd:
Forc'd to the field he came, but in the rear;
And feign'd distraction to conceal his fear:
Till one more cunning caught him in the fnare,
(Ill for himself) and dragg'd him into war.
Now let a hero's arms a coward veft,
And he, who shunn'd all honors, gain the best;
And let me stand excluded from my right, Robb'd of my kinfman's arms, who first appear'd in fight.
Better for us, at home he had remain'd,
Had it been true the madness which he feign'd,
Or fo believ'd; the lefs had been our fhame,
The lefs his counsell'd crime, which brands the
Nor Philoctetes had been left inclos'd
In a bare ifle, to wants and pains expos'd,
Where to the rocks, with folitary groans,
His fuff'rings and our baseness he bemoans;
And wishes (fo may heav'n his wish fulfil)
The due reward to him who caus'd his ill.
Now he, with us to Troy's destruction fworn,
Our brother of the war, by whom are borne
Alcides' arrows, pent in narrow bounds,
With cold and hunger pinch'd, and pain'd with
To find him food and clothing, muft employ
Against the birds the fhafts due to the fate of
Yet still he lives, and lives from treason free,
Because he left Ulyffes' company:
Poor Palamede might wish, fo void of aid
Rather to have been left, than fo to death betray'd.
The coward bore the man immortal spite,
Who fham'd him out of madness into fight:
Nor daring otherwise to vent his hate,
Accus'd him firft of treafon to the state;
And then for proof produc'd the golden ftore
Himfelf had hidden in his tent before:
Thus of two champions he depriv'd our hoft,
By exile one, and one by treafon loft.
Thus fights Ulyffes, thus his fame extends,
A formidable man, but to his friends:
Great, for what greatnefs is in words and found:
Ev'n faithful Neftor less in both is found:
But that he might without a rival reign,
He left his faithful Neftor on the plain;
Forfook his friend ev'n at his utmost need,
Who tir'd and tardy, with his wounded steed,
Cry'd out for aid, and call'd him by his name;
But cowardife has neither ears nor fhame:
Thus fled the good old man, bereft of aid,
And, for as much as lay in him, betray'd.
That this is not a fable forg'd by me,
Like one of his, an Ulyffean lye,
I vouch ev'n Diomede, who, tho' his friend,
Cannot that act excufe, much less defend :
He call'd him back aloud, and tax'd his fear;
And fure enough he heard, but durft not hear.
The Gods with equal eyes on mortals look;
He justly was forfaken, who forfook:
Wanted that fuccour he refus'd to lend,
Found every fellow fuch another friend:
No wonder, if he roar'd that all might hear,
His elocution was increas'd by fear:
I heard, Iran, I found him out of breath,
Pale, trembling, and half dead with fear of death.
Though he had judg'd himself by his own laws,
And stood condemn'd, I help'd the common
With my broad buckler hid him from the foe;
(Ev'n the shield trembled as he lay below;)
And from impending fate the coward freed:
Good heav'n forgive me for fo bad a deed!
If still he will perfift, and urge the ftrife,
First let him give me back his forfeit life :
Let him return to that opprobrious field;
Again creep under my protecting fhield:
Let him lie wounded, let the foe be near,
And let his quiv'ring heart confefs his fear;
There put him in the very jaws of fate;
And let him plead his cause in that estate:
And yet when fnatch'd from death, when from
My lifted shield I loos'd and let him go,
Good heav'ns, how light he rofe, with what a bound
He sprung from earth, forgetful of his wound: How fresh, how eager then his feet to ply; Who had not ftrength to stand, had speed to fly!
Hector came on, and brought the Gods along; Fear feiz'd alike the feeble and the strong: Each Greek was an Ulyffes; fuch a dread Th' approach, and ev'n the found of Hector bred: Him, flesh'd with flaughter, and with conqueft crown'd,
I met, and over-turn'd him to the ground.
When after, matchlefs as he deem'd in might,
He challeng'd all our hoft to fingle fight,
All eyes were fix'd on me: the lots were thrown;
But for your champion I was with'd alone:
Your vows were heard, we fought and neither yield;
Yet I return'd unvanquish'd from the field.
With Jove to friend th' insulting Trojan came,
And menac'd us with force, our fleet with flame: