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makes Pindar ask the Hymns who shall inspire the Song. Are not the hymns and the song the same ?—and is not this as tasteful as to say~ O Violin, what shall we play on the fiddle ??-meaning the same kit all the while ? Besides, what has the word inspire'--and, especially, what has the word “ warbled'—to do in such a passage ?
The first we impute to the rhyme; the second, we set down to a momentary deliquium of taste and Pindarić feeling. Pindar never warbles, that we remember :-did David warble?-he sings, if you will, and strikes the lyre; and if there must be epithets in English, where there are none in the Greek, let them twang, or chime, or ring, or sound, in any way, as from the strings of the lyre—the instrument of gods and heroes; but let us have no memorial of sol fa, or the prima donna. 'Avažipoguliyyes should be the pitch-pipe to the translator of Pindar.
We ve mentioned this short passage as an obvious instance of that sort of slipslop translation, which is more unbearable when applied to Pindar, than to almost any other poet we know. But this is not Mr. Cary's general manner; if it had been, our respect for his Dante would have made it necessary for us to be silent on his Pindar. No, the general character of this translation is manly, and some of the most difficult things in Pindar, and the most opposed in tone, are executed with equal excellence. The moral sentences and personal reflections of the poet are rendered with great spirit; for example, can anything be better than this ?
Πολλά μοι υπ’ αγκώ
Pavãuta oUvETOTO Io X. T. 2.-II. Olymp. v. 149.
Clamoring, like daws, at Jove's celestial bird.
*Η θαύματα πολλά.
ižaratūvTo põdos. %. T. 2.-I. Olymp. 43.
And grace, that can a magic throw
For so is blame eschew'd.' All the passages in Pindar of this grave, sententious kind-and most of our readers know how numerous and characteristic they are-appear to us to be translated by Mr. Cary with peculiar suc
But his success is not limited to this department of the original; in those passages in which an exquisite elegance of style, and, a certain subtle lightness of thought predominate, he has more than once been very felicitous. We know nothing in all Pindar so graceful—so exclusively graceful—in manner, as his address to the Graces : the inspiration seems more than a figure, and, indeed, we cannot doubt that the poet, upon this occasion, studied in a peculiar degree to achieve a tone germane to the character of his ladies-patronesses. We venture to quote the whole ode, which is short, and will serve as an instance of the poet's and the translator's manner, in an entire composition.
Kαφισίων υδάτων λαχούσαι-κ. τ. λ.-ΧΙV. Olymp.
• Nor without the holy Graces,
Daughters of heaven ;--Aglaia, thou
· Waft, Echo, now thy wing divine
With plumes in Pisa's valley won.' Pindar lived to be eighty years old, and, like all the great poets of his age, and indeed, country, was a voluminous writer. "The books of odes which we possess did not constitute a fourth part of the works which were collected and edited by Aristophanes and Aristarchus. Those great grammarians classed the remains of Pindar, which seem to have been entirely lyric, under the names of Pæans, Dithyrambics, Prosodia, Parthenia, Hyporchemata, Encomia, Scolia, Threni, and others. They distinguished the Epinicia, the largest part of which we still have, from the Hymns, more strictly so called. It has been said that the most brilliant specimens of the Pindaric muse have not come down to us. We cannot quite believe this : not doubting, assuredly, that time has robbed us of much, little inferior in merit to that which it has preserved ; but conceiving it more probable, in the absence of explicit testimony, that, upon the whole, the best was the most celebrated, and the more celebrated the most likely to live. The few fragments which still remain, amply prove that Pindar was Pindar always, and we should be glad to see another edition of Mr. Cary's book enriched by versions of two or three of the most connected of them. The Scolium χρήν μέν κατά καιρόν ερώτων-κ. τ. λ.-and the Threnic fragments-τοϊσι λάμπει μέν μένος αελίου-κ. τ. λ.in particular, are exquisitely beautiful, and ought not to be lost to the English reader of this great poet. The Dithyrambic lines-deur' ¿v xogov, 'Outo-putting us in mind of Schiller's, or more truly, Coleridge's · Visit of the Gods,'— will also bear translation.* As far as it is possible to judge from these scanty relics,
We jot down the following rough lines merely to show the different tone of the Dithyrambus from the majestic Epinician :
we should think that Pindar's boldness of imagery and luxuriance of language never deserted him; but that in the Epinician Odes he had exercised a severer taste and a more exalted tone, than in his other compositions.
This might well be expected, when we come to consider the surpassing dignity of the occasions upon which these odes were composed, and the remoteness and variety of the countries to which they were sent.
The Games which attracted the costly and laborious competition of princes and magistrates, must have been associated with feelings and solemnities of a very peculiar interest;—and the poet, whose odes were chanted in Rhodes, and in Sicily, in Cyrene, Lacedæmon, Corinth, Athens, and Lesbos, must have possessed a truly national fame, and almost all that was civilized in the world as his theatre. It should be remembered that the Olympic and other public Games were in their institution and accompaniments strictly religious solemnities, and the hymn which was composed upon the occasion of a victory was designed as much for the honour of the God as for the praise of the man.
We ought to say that the Divinity was more regarded than the winner of the prize ; for it would have revolted the religious and the prudential feelings of a Greek of Pindar's age to have made the successful individual the principal figure in the hymn. The honour was in itself transcendant, and for that very
Down to our dance, gods!
Hither descend !
Fresh gather'd in Spring!
Singing divine !
To lead thy bright quire !
Of Nemea's strand;
Ring loud in the air !"
reason the praise was spread over as wide a surface as possible. A Nemesis attended on too great felicity: there was a certain jealousy in the gods which might be provoked by triumph and soothed by moderation ; it was thought possible to propitiate this avenging principle by voluntary abandonment of part of what was strictly due. Polycrates threw his diamond signet into the sea. The Athenians raised a marble statue to the goddess immediately after the battle of Marathon. Pindar directly attributes the success of the victor to a divinity, and is careful to pour bis “ foaming cup of praise' over the city, the tribe, the ancestors, and even the servants of the winner. He rarely writes for a wrestler or pugilist without distinctly naming and commending his trainer, nor is the groom, or the charioteer, or the horse forgotten. Sometimes the poet praises the master of the choric band, and sometimes he praises himself. Every thing is praised, that Hiero or Diagoras may not have to bear the whole odium—the phóvos—of the splendid triumph; severe admonitions to humility are not spared, and Pindar seldom fails to offer up a deprecating prayer---so to call it-in the character and with the solemnity of a priest.
Let any one peruse the Epinician Odes of Pindar with this clue, and he will clearly perceive that the Greek poet did not celebrate his patrons after the manner of the laureates of Louis's court; he studiously avoids a concentration of eulogy upon one head; the victory is in stronger relief than the victor, and the splendour of the victory is almost merged in the general and enduring glory of the Games themselves. Moreover Pindar addresses even Hiero and Arcesilaus as their guest and friend; his tone towards men of lower rank is that of a man conferring a gift. He ends his first great Ode to Hiero thus :
En o' TE TOÛTOV
λανας εόντα παντα. .
To tread the path sublime ;
For the wise poet's skill,
Wherever Greece extends. ---Cary. He puts on their wreath of victory, and sticks amaranth in the midst of it—to flourish when the olive or the parsley should be withered. He is conscious that he gives more than he receives, and is at no pains to conceal it. The dignity of the poet was surely never pitched so high, or so majestically maintained. The respect which Pindar demanded was willingly paid. The