Meantime, thy graceful raiment rich, prepared 595
By our own maidens, in thy palace lies;
But I will burn it, burn it all, because
Useless to thee, who never, so adorn’d,
Shalt slumber more; yet every eye in Troy
Shall see, how glorious once was thy attire. 600
So, weeping, she; to whom the multitude
Of Trojan dames responsive sigh’d around.
ARGUMENT OF THE TWENTY-THIRD BOOK.
The body of Patroclus is burned, and the funeral games ensue.
Such mourning was in Troy; meantime
Their galleys and the shores of Hellespont
Regaining, each to his own ship retired.
But not the Myrmidons; Achilles them
Close rank’d in martial order still detain’d, 5
And thus his fellow-warriors brave address’d.
Ye swift-horsed Myrmidons, associates dear!
Release not from your chariots yet your steeds
Firm-hoof’d, but steeds and chariots driving near,
Bewail Patroclus, as the rites demand 10
Of burial; then, satiate with grief and tears,
We will release our steeds, and take repast.
He ended, and, himself leading the way,
His numerous band all mourn’d at once the dead.
Around the body thrice their glossy steeds, 15
Mourning they drove, while Thetis in their hearts
The thirst of sorrow kindled; they with tears
The sands bedew’d, with tears their radiant arms,
Such deep regret of one so brave they felt.
Then, placing on the bosom of his friend 20
His homicidal hands, Achilles thus
The shade of his Patroclus, sad, bespake.
Hail, oh Patroclus, even in Ades hail!
For I will now accomplish to the full
My promise pledged to thee, that I would give 25
Hector dragg’d hither to be torn by dogs
Piecemeal, and would before thy funeral pile
The necks dissever of twelve Trojan youths
Of noblest rank, resentful of thy death.
He said, and meditating foul disgrace 30
To noble Hector, stretch’d him prone in dust
Beside the bier of Menoetiades.
Then all the Myrmidons their radiant arms
Put off, and their shrill-neighing steeds released.
A numerous band beside the bark they sat 35
Of swift AEacides, who furnish’d forth
Himself a feast funereal for them all.
Many a white ox under the ruthless steel
Lay bleeding, many a sheep and blatant goat,
With many a saginated boar bright-tusk’d, 40
Amid fierce flames Vulcanian stretch’d to roast.
Copious the blood ran all around the dead.
And now the Kings of Greece conducted thence
To Agamemnon’s tent the royal son