Of all the boundless earth one mortal man
Who will, in times to come, consult with heaven?
See’st thou yon height of wall, and yon deep trench
With which the Grecians have their fleet inclosed, 530
And, careless of our blessing, hecatomb
Or invocation have presented none?
Far as the day-spring shoots herself abroad,
So far the glory of this work shall spread,
While Phoebus and myself, who, toiling hard, 535
Built walls for king Laomedon, shall see
Forgotten all the labor of our hands.
To whom, indignant, thus high-thundering Jove.
Oh thou, who shakest the solid earth at will,
What hast thou spoken? An inferior power, 540
A god of less sufficiency than thou,
Might be allowed some fear from such a cause.
Fear not. Where’er the morning shoots her beams,
Thy glory shall be known; and when the Greeks
Shall seek their country through the waves again, 545
Then break this bulwark down, submerge it whole,
And spreading deep with sand the spacious shore
As at the first, leave not a trace behind.
Such conference held the Gods; and now the sun
Went down, and, that great work perform’d, the Greeks 550
From tent to tent slaughter’d the fatted ox
And ate their evening cheer. Meantime arrived
Large fleet with Lemnian wine; Euneus, son
Of Jason and Hypsipile, that fleet
From Lemnos freighted, and had stow’d on board 555
A thousand measures from the rest apart
For the Atridae; but the host at large
By traffic were supplied; some barter’d brass,
Others bright steel; some purchased wine with hides,
These with their cattle, with their captives those, 560
And the whole host prepared a glad regale.
All night the Grecians feasted, and the host
Of Ilium, and all night deep-planning Jove
Portended dire calamities to both,
Thundering tremendous!—Pale was every cheek; 565
Each pour’d his goblet on the ground, nor dared
The hardiest drink, ’till he had first perform’d
Libation meet to the Saturnian King
Omnipotent; then, all retiring, sought
Their couches, and partook the gift of sleep. 570
ARGUMENT OF THE EIGHTH BOOK.
Jove calls a council, in which he forbids all interference of the Gods between the Greeks and Trojans. He repairs to Ida, where, having consulted the scales of destiny, he directs his lightning against the Grecians. Nestor is endangered by the death of one of his horses. Diomede delivers him. In the chariot of Diomede they both hasten to engage Hector, whose charioteer is slain by Diomede. Jupiter again interposes by his thunders, and the whole Grecian host, discomfited, is obliged to seek refuge within the rampart. Diomede, with others, at sight of a favorable omen sent from Jove in answer to Agamemnon’s prayer, sallies. Teucer performs great exploits, but is disabled by Hector. Juno and Pallas set forth from Olympus in aid of the Grecians, but are stopped by Jupiter, who reascends from Ida, and in heaven foretells the distresses which await the Grecians.