He also made him greaves of molten tin. 760
The armor finish’d, bearing in his hand
The whole, he set it down at Thetis’ feet.
She, like a falcon from the snowy top
Stoop’d of Olympus, bearing to the earth
The dazzling wonder, fresh from Vulcan’s hand. 765
ARGUMENT OF THE NINETEENTH BOOK.
Achilles is reconciled to Agamemnon, and clothed in new armor forged by Vulcan, leads out the Myrmidons to battle.
Now rose the morn in saffron vest attired
From ocean, with new day for Gods and men,
When Thetis at the fleet of Greece arrived,
Bearing that gift divine. She found her son
All tears, and close enfolding in his arms 5
Patroclus, while his Myrmidons around
Wept also; she amid them, graceful, stood,
And seizing fast his hand, him thus bespake.
Although our loss be great, yet, oh my son!
Leave we Patroclus lying on the bier 10
To which the Gods ordain’d him from the first.
Receive from Vulcan’s hands these glorious arms,
Such as no mortal shoulders ever bore.
So saying, she placed the armor on the ground
Before him, and the whole bright treasure rang. 15
A tremor shook the Myrmidons; none dared
Look on it, but all fled. Not so himself.
In him fresh vengeance kindled at the view,
And, while he gazed, a splendor as of fire
Flash’d from his eyes. Delighted, in his hand 20
He held the glorious bounty of the God,
And, wondering at those strokes of art divine,
His eager speech thus to his mother turn’d.
The God, my mother! hath bestow’d in truth
Such armor on me as demanded skill 25
Like his, surpassing far all power of man.
Now, therefore, I will arm. But anxious fears
Trouble me, lest intrusive flies, meantime,
Breed worms within the spear-inflicted wounds
Of Menoetiades, and fill with taint 30
Of putrefaction his whole breathless form.
But him the silver-footed Goddess fair
Thus answer’d. Oh, my son! chase from thy mind
All such concern. I will, myself, essay
To drive the noisome swarms which on the slain 35
In battle feed voracious. Should he lie
The year complete, his flesh shall yet be found
Untainted, and, it may be, fragrant too.
But thou the heroes of Achaia’s host
Convening, in their ears thy wrath renounce 40
Against the King of men, then, instant, arm
For battle, and put on thy glorious might.
So saying, the Goddess raised