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'N reading several paffages of the Prophet Isaiah, which
ing it, I could not but observe a remarkable parity between many of the thoughts, and thofe in the Pollio of Virgil. This will not seem surprising, when we reflect, that the Eclogue was taken from a Sibylline prophcey on the fame fubject. One may judge that Virgil did not copy it line by line, but felected fuch ideas as beft agreed with the nature of paftoral poetry, and difpofed them in that manner which ferved moft to beautify his piece. I have endeavoured the fame in this imitation of him, tho' without admitting any thing of my own; fince it was written with this particular view, that the reader, by comparing the feveral thoughts, might fee how far the images and descriptions of the Prophet are fuperior to thofe of the Poet. But as I fear I have prejudiced them by my management, I fhall fubjoin the paffages of Ifaiah, and those of Virgil, under the fame disadvantage of a literal translation.
MESSIA A H.
In Imitation of VIRGIL'S POLLIO.
YE Nymphs of Solyma! begin the fong:
To heav'nly themes fublimer strains belong.
Ven. 8. A Virgin fball conceive - All crimes shall cease, &c.]
Te duce, fi qua manent fceleris vestigia nostri,
Now he Virgin returns, now the kingdom of Saturn returns, now a new Progeny is feat down from bigh heaven. By means of thee, whatever reliques of our crimes remain, fhall be wiped away, and free the world from perpetual fears. He shall govern the earth in peace, with the virtues of bis Father.
ISAIAH, Ch. vii. ver. 14. Behold a Virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son.-Ch. ix. ver. 6, 7. Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; the Prince of Feace:
From * Jeffe's root behold a branch arise,
VER. 23. See Nature baftes, &c.]
VIRG. E. 4. ver. 18. At tibi prima, puer, nullo munufcula cultu,
Errantes hederas paffim cum baccare tellus,
Peace: of the increase of bis government, and of bis peace, there shall be no end : upon the throne of David, and upon bis kingdom, to order and to fablish it, with judgment, and with juftice, for ever and ever.
*Ifaiah, ch. xi. ver. 1,
Ch. xxv. ver. 4.
For thee, O Child, fball the earth, without being tilled, produce ber early offerings; winding ivy mixed with Baccar, and Golocafia with fmiling Acanthus. Tky# cradle fhall pour forth pleasing flowers about thee.
ISAIAH, chap. xxxv. ver. 1. The wilderness and the folitary place shall be glad, and the defart shall rejoice and blossom as the rofe. Ch. Ix. ver. 13. The glory of Lebanon fhall come unto thee, the fir-tree, the pine-tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of thy Sanctuary.
Hark! a glad voice the lonely desart chears;
Ch. xl. ver. 3, 4.
Ch. xlii. ver. 18. Eh. xxxv. ver, 5, 6, 1 Ch. xxv. ver. 8.
VER. 29. Hark! a glad voice, &c.]
VIRG. E. 4. ver. 46. Aggredere ô magnos, aderit jam tempus, honores,
Intoni montes, ipfæ jam carmina rupes,
Ipfa fonant arbusta, Deus, deus ille Menalca!
E. 5. ver. 62
Ob come, and receive the mighty bonours: the time draws nigh, O beloved offspring of the Gods, O great encrease of Jove! The uncultivated mountains send shouts of joy to the flars, the very rocks fing in verse, the very shrubs cry out, A God! a God!
ISAIAH, ch. xl. ver. 3, 4. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord! make firait in the defart a high way for our God! Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and bill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made frait, and the rough places plain. Chap. iv. ver. 27 Break forth into finging, ye mountains! O foreft, and every Lord bath redeemed Ifrael.
tree therein! for the
As the good * fhepherd tends his fleecy care,
Feeds from his hand, and in his bofom warms;
green reed trembles, and the bulrufh nods.
VIR. 67. The fwain in barren defarts; &c.]·
VIRG. E. 4. ver. 28. Molli paulatim flavefcit campus arista,
Et duræ quercus fudabunt rofcida mella.
* Ch. xl. ver. 11.
+ Ch ix. ver. 6.
Ch. ii. ver. 4•
** Ch. xxxv. ver. 1, 7.
The field fhall grow yellow with ripen'd ears, and the red grape shall bang upon the wild brambles, and the bard caks shall diftill boney like dew.
ISAIAH, ch. xxxv. ver. 7. The parched ground shall become a pool, and the tbirfty land fprings of water in the babitations where dragons lay, shall be grafs, and reeds, and rushes. Ch. lv. ver. 13. Inflead of the thorn fball come up the firetree, and infiead of the briar shall come up the myrtle-tree.