The Iliad of Homer
Page: 87Him Phoebus took: he casts a cloud around
The fainting chief, and wards the mortal wound.
Then with a voice that shook the vaulted skies,
The king insults the goddess as she flies:
"Ill with Jove's daughter bloody fights agree,
The field of combat is no scene for thee:
Go, let thy own soft sex employ thy care,
Go, lull the coward, or delude the fair.
Taught by this stroke renounce the war's alarms,
And learn to tremble at the name of arms."
Tydides thus. The goddess, seized with dread,
Confused, distracted, from the conflict fled.
To aid her, swift the winged Iris flew,
Wrapt in a mist above the warring crew.
The queen of love with faded charms she found.
Pale was her cheek, and livid look'd the wound.
To Mars, who sat remote, they bent their way:[pg 093]IRIS TO MARS." title="VENUS, WOUNDED IN THE HAND, CONDUCTED BY IRIS TO MARS." />
VENUS, WOUNDED IN THE HAND, CONDUCTED BY IRIS TO MARS.
Then she: "This insult from no god I found,
An impious mortal gave the daring wound!
Behold the deed of haughty Diomed!
'Twas in the son's defence the mother bled.
The war with Troy no more the Grecians wage;
But with the gods (the immortal gods) engage."
Dione then: "Thy wrongs with patience bear,
And share those griefs inferior powers must share:[pg 094]
Unnumber'd woes mankind from us sustain,
And men with woes afflict the gods again.
The mighty Mars in mortal fetters bound,149
And lodged in brazen dungeons underground,
Full thirteen moons imprison'd roar'd in vain;
Otus and Ephialtes held the chain:
Perhaps had perish'd had not Hermes' care
Restored the groaning god to upper air.
Great Juno's self has borne her weight of pain,
The imperial partner of the heavenly reign;
And fill'd with anguish her immortal heart.
E'en hell's grim king Alcides' power confess'd,
The shaft found entrance in his iron breast;
To Jove's high palace for a cure he fled,
Pierced in his own dominions of the dead;
Where Paeon, sprinkling heavenly balm around,
Assuaged the glowing pangs, and closed the wound.
Rash, impious man! to stain the bless'd abodes,