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Ante Chaos, jacuitque soporo pondere bruta
Materies, late quam circumsedit opaca
Majestas tenebrarum, atque alti vesperis horror.
Tum vero, simul atque vovi primordia pulsûs
Cepit iners, habitura modum quemcunque aliunde
Exterus intulerat rerum tenor, ibat in altum
Impetis æterni patiens, neque ibi mora tardat
Terrena, aurarumve hebetat vapor, infinitum
Porrigitur, vacuusque patet sine limite mundus.

Naturæ sed enim tractus amor ille per omnes
Rara rudimenta, et teneros infunditur ortus,
Agglomerare sibi constrictum corpore corpus,
Miscerique et abire in idem ; ni irrupta resistat
Durities, solidusque minuto in pulvere finis.
Inde tenax tamen Orbis, et inde elementa cohærent
Quæque locis, rigidi montes, robustaque saxa
Continuant sese, et longi jacet area campi :
Tenuis item tremuli sinus aëris, atque animarum
Fusilis erigitur sublimi limite candor ;
Inde serenanti pelago, sub luce quieta
Lubrica panditur unda super fluitantibus undis ;
Inde etiam rapidi vacuum per inane planetæ
Certum iter ingeminant versi, tuque, ardua Tellus,
Laberis, et vinclo media interflecteris aureo :
Cærula nec vero flammai concava supra
Per vastum volgata trementia sidera claudunt,
Nec maris ætherii liquido lavat agmine vortex.
Quippe ea, quæ levibus fuerat prius addita rerum
Insinuataque particulis, ignava facultas
Pergere quo semel impulsu cæpere moveri,
Obstinat, una super desideria, unus ab alto
Tardat amor paris, et coëundi blanda cupido.

Sol itaque assiduâ æstatem vortigine volvit,
Fervida per medium radiant ubi sidera mundum,
Candidus, et campos irrorat luce patentes.
Sex autem circum astra profundi fulgida cæli
Corripiunt spatia; Ille gravi contraria deorsum
Imporio vocat, ut quantum indignantia vinci
Rectum iter integrent, tantum subtilia tardent
Vincula ; ita oppositæ dubio libramine vires

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Inter utramque viam lævi declivia flexu
Sollicitant tenus, et facili sinuamine fallunt.
Tum vero, quo cuique magis curvatus eundo
Vertitur interior devexo tramite gyrus,
Et præceps rota vergit, eo magis impetis auctu
Præteriit, vacuumque fuga eluctatur in æquor.
Lentus ibi ascensu labor, et cunctantior actus
Objicitur, donec jam largior orbita vastum
Rettulerit errorem, et rerum causa recurrens
Inclinata suo spatia instauraverit arcu.

Perpetuos igitur genitrix Natura reflexus
Viva novat, liquidumque jubar de fonte perenni
Ebibit, unde dies et mollis in æthere fervor ;
Unde colorum habiles tacito discrimine lapsus,
Et septemgemino rumpuntur suavia tortu
Lumina, prout radii tenuis textura cadendo
Frangitur, aut media fluor interrumpitur umbra.

Ultimus Ille coronati vaga cingula coeli
Ostendit, tardusque immensa volumina versat
Nocte super gelidâ, cui quondam Arnonis Eoi
Propter inumbratum laceris sub rupibus amnem,
Sulphureos ignes circum horribili ululatu
Lurida pallentes duxerunt orgia Mystæ.

Acre dehinc jubar, et magni via vertitur axis :
Illum adeo in terris veteri formidine regem
Extulerant, aris Divôm sacrisque repertis,
Pensilis ære cavo clangor, responsaque vatum
Thessalica, et tristi querceta sonantia vento.

Infra autem, cursusque premens confinia nostri,
Ismarium rapido aperitur vertice numen.

At Venus, ante alios cæli sublimior ignes,
Vidit odoratum Libani nemus, et freta cantu
Longa queri; luctus Tyriarum et mollia matrum
Munera, rorantesque rosas, mæstamque anemonem
Spargere purpureo violatum volnere fontem.

Dein propiore rotâ rutilantia limina radit
Cyllene in gelidâ dictus sacer.-

Interea spatia ipsa perenni percita pulsu Visa simul Auere, et coeli positura malignam Serpere tarda viam, quamvis intactilis, una,

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Continuata, capax rerum, regione profundâ :
Usque adeo sub Sole reflexis orbibus annus
Serior erigitur rediens, apicesque volutos
Et prolapsa sui sequitur fastigia cursus.

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Namque ubi se obliquo scindunt effusa meatu
Æquora, et alterni gravior vicinia motus
Allicit, astra suos usque acclinantia flexus
Aut prolixa volant, aut delibrata feruntur
In latus—Inde pati senium vaga fabrica mundi,

110 Inque dies ire in casus, atque impete fati Assiduo labefactari primordia rerum. Scilicet et tempus veniat, quo maxima moles Funditus interrupta ruat, gelidique dehiscant Horrendum inter se confuso federe fines.

115 Tu quoque, tu in medio pallere videberis orbe, Sol, opifex flammarum, et acutæ lucis origo, Attonitisque procul quatere ægra crepuscula terris

. Est igitur Deus—ille Anima intellecta per Omne Implet agens magni mortalia monia mundi.

120 Ille super fontes tenebrarum, immania regna, Quo neque fervida mens hominum pervenit, et alte Infinita quies vitâ vacat, incubat æternum, Extremamque tegit puro sub numine noctem.

R. S. Coll. Regal. et Univ. Schol.

In Comitiis Prioribus, 1792.

ON THE

LANGUAGE OF THE PELASGI.

was

HERODOTUS and Thucydides describe the Pelasgi as having used a language which they term yawaoa Bapßapos i. e. a dialect essentially different from that which was used by the Hellenic tribes. It has been observed, that “to enumerate the barbarisms (i. e. the admixture of foreign words and phrases) of the Laconic dialect, would be to transcribe whole pages of Hesychius; and whoever considers the specimens of it in the Lysistrata of Aristophanes, must recognise the traces of the gdwoa Bápßapos (the foreign dialect) which Herodotus and Thucydides ascribe to the Pelasgi.” This is saying in other words, that in the Greek of the Laconians there were many traces of the Pelasgic of their ancestors; or that the Laconic dialect

a mixture of the γλώσσα Ελληνική with the γλώσσα βάρβαρος. .

It is therefore entirely without foundation, that an able and acute writer has objected to the above hypothesis, that it supposes the ylwooa Bápßapos to mean “barbarous Greek;" whereas in point of fact it most clearly distinguishes between them, when it asserts that the traces of the ydwooa Bápßapos are visible in one of the impurer dialects of the γλώσσα ΕλληVIK"); as if we were to say, that whoever is acquainted with the particular dialect of English spoken in Suffolk and Norfolk, must recognise the traces of the Saxon tongue; an assertion which surely does not go to imply that Saxon means bad English.

The writer above alluded to observes, that this is the first time that any man, who calls himself a scholar, would construe γλωσσα βάρβαρος by barbarous Greek.Now the opinion before stated conveys no such implication ; but, even if it did, is there no defence to be set up for it ? let us see. Homer calls the Carians Bapßapópwvoi, (Iliad. B. 872.) which Strabo (XIV. p. 663.) explains thus : Octws oùv kai to Bapßapopwνειν και τους βαρβαροφώνους δεκτέον, ΤΟΥΣ ΚΑΚΩΣ ΕΛΛΗΝΙΖΟΝΤΑΣ. . When Agamemnon (Sophocl. Ajac. 1251.) reproaches Teucer in these words, την βάρβαρον γαρ γλωσσαν

σαν,

O'k éraíw, he certainly does not mean to say, that Teucer did not speak Greek, but that he spoke very bad Greek, Greek mixed with the Cretan of his Mother; so the ancient critics explain Homer's epithet of Bapapópwvos by saying that the Carians Κρητών άποικοι όντες, εκρήτωσαν την Ελληνικήν γλωσ

But still it may be said no scholar has construed this phrase by“ barbarous Greek.” The following remark occurs in Dr. Clarke's' very learned work on the connexion of the Roman, Saxon, and English Coins, p. 74. If Bapßapopuvous, in Homer, signifies people that spoke Greek ill, as both Strabo and the Scholiasts observe, Bápßapov yd worav, in Herodotus, must be understood in the same sense, that the Pelasgi spoke very bad Greek. This natural explication brings both these authors, (Herodotus and Strabo) to a perfect agreement.” Dr. Clarke's opinion is, that the Greeks were originally called IleNaoyoi, and that from the Peloponnesus to the Euxine, there was originally but one people.

The notion of Herodotus (1. 58.) is, that the Hellenic tribe, being separated (Stooxotèr) from the Pelasgic body, was small and insignificant at first, but gradually increased in size and importance by the successive addition of several barbarous tribes. By degrees it became of such importance, as to give its name to the greater part of Greece, but this did not happen till after Homer's time, that is about 900 years B. C. Now Xuthus the son of Hellen fled from Thessaly to Attica about 1430 B. C. and long before that time we may reasonably suppose, that the ancient language of the Pelasgic tribes was ameliorating and perfecting itself; so that before it arrived at that state which was afterwards called Hellenic, a period of nearly 1000 years may be supposed to have elapsed. The inhabitants of Attica adopted (not the name or title) but the usages and dialect of the "Exinves by degrees. They were, says Herodotus (VIII. 44.) called at first Κραναοί, afterwards Κεκροπίεαι, then Αθηναίοι, and fourthly "Iwves. So that there was not necessarily any determinate period when the Athenians first assumed the title of "Exinues.They became "Exinves by slow degrees, and might be so in fact, long before they were called so. One feature of this gradual

1. The Grandfather of our present learned and amiable Professor of Mineralogy. VOL. 11. NO. 6.

HH

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