from "ECLOGA VI"from ECLOGUE 6
Virgil (P. Vergilius Maro)trans. Guy Lee
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hinc lapides Pyrrhae iactos, Saturnia regna,
Caucasiasque refert uolucris furtumque Promethei.
his adiungit, Hylan nautae quo fonte relictum
clamassent, ut litus 'Hyla, Hyla' omne sonaret;
et fortunatam, si numquam armenta fuissent,
Pasiphaen niuei solatur amore iuuenci.
a, uirgo infelix, quae te dementia cepit!
Proetides implerunt falsis mugitibus agros,
at non tam turpis pecudum tamen ulla secuta
concubitus, quamuis collo timuisset aratrum
et saepe in leui quaesisset cornua fronte.
a! uirgo infelix, tu nunc in montibus erras:
ille latus niueum molli fultus hyacintho
ilice sub nigra pallentis ruminat herbas
aut aliquam in magno sequitur grege. 'claudite,
Nymphae,
Dictaeae Nymphae, nemorum iam claudite saltus,
si qua forte ferant oculis sese obuia nostris
errabunda bouis uestigia; forsitan illum
aut herba captum uiridi aut armenta secutum
perducant aliquae stabula ad Gortynia uaccae.'
tum canit Hesperidum miratam mala puellam;
tum Phaëthontiadas musco circumdat amarae
corticis atque solo proceras erigit alnos.
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Here he recounts the stones by Pyrrha thrown, Saturnian
Kingship, Caucasian eagles and Prometheus' theft;
Adds at what fountain mariners for Hylas lost
Shouted till all the shore re-echoed Hylas, Hylas;
And (fortunate if herds of kine had never been)
Consoles Pasiphaë for love of a white steer.
Unlucky maiden, ah, what madness mastered you!
The Proetides with mimic lowing filled the fields,
But yet not one pursued so base an intercourse
With beasts, although she feared the plough's yoke for her neck
And many a time would feel on her smooth brow for horns.
Unlucky maiden, ah, you wander now on mountains,
But he, with snow-white flank pressing soft hyacinth,
Beneath black ilex ruminates the sallow grass,
Or tracks some female in a great herd. 'Close, you Nymphs,

Dictéan Nymphs, now close the clearings in the woods.
Somewhere, perhaps, the wandering hoof-prints of a bull
Will find their own way to our eyes; possibly he,
Attracted by green grass, or following the herd,
Is led on by some cow to Gortyn's cattle-sheds.'
Then sings he the maid who admired Hesperidéan apples;
Then with the moss of bitter bark surrounds and lifts
The Phaëthóntiads from earth as alders tall;
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Copyright © Oxford University Press 1969, Trans. Copyright © Guy Lee 1980, 1984 - publ. Penguin Classics


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