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IN reading feveral paffages of the Prophet Ifaiah, which foretell the coming of Chrift and the felicities attending it, I could not but obferve a remarkable parity between many of the thoughts, and thofe in the Pollio of Virgil. This will not seem furprising, when we reflect, that the Eclogue was taken from a Sibylline prophecy 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 served moft to beautify his piece. I have endeavour'd the fame in this imitation of him, though 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 defcriptions 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 tranflation. P.
In Imitation of VIRGIL'S POLLIO.
Yearly themes fublimer ftrains belong.
E Nymphs of Solyma! begin the fong:
The moffy fountains, and the fylvan fhades,
All crimes fhall
VER. 8. A Virgin shall conceive
VIRG. E. iv.
Jam redit et Virgo, redeunt Saturnia regna;
Now the Virgin returns, now the kingdom of Saturn returns, now a new Progeny is fent down from high heaven. By means of thee, whatever reliques of our crimes remain, hall be wiped away, and free the world from perpetual fears. He hall govern the earth in peace, with the virtues of his Father.
ISAIAH, Ch. vii. v. 14. Behold a Virgin fhall conceive and bear a Son.-Ch. ix. v. 6, 7. Unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; the Prince of Peace: of the increase
From Jeffe's root behold a branch arife,
Whofe facred flow'r with fragrance fills the skies:
The fick and weak the healing plant shall aid,
All crimes fhall cease, and ancient fraud fhall fail ; Returning | Justice lift aloft her scale;
Peace o'er the world her olive wand extend,
And white-rob'd Innocence from heav'n defcend.
of his government, and of his peace, there shall be no end: Upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order and to ftablish it, with judgment, and with juflice, for ever and ever. P.
VER. 23. See Nature haftes, etc.]
At tibi prima, puer, nullo manufcula cultu,
For thee, O Child, shall the earth, without being tille, produce her early offerings; winding ivy, mixed with Baccar, and Colocafia with fmiling Acanthus. Thy cradle fball pour forth pleafing flowers about thee.
ISAIAH, Ch. xxxv. v. 1. The wilderness and the fulitary place fhall be glad, and the defart shall rejoice and blofJom
* Ifai xi, v. 1. † Ch. xlv. v. 8. Ch. xxv. v. 4. !!Ch. ix. v. 7.
See* lofty Lebanon his head advance,
And Carmel's flow'ry top perfumes the skies!
fom as the rofe. Ch. lx. v. 13. The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir-tree, the pine-tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of the fanctuary.. P. VER. 29. Hark, a glad Voice, etc.]
VIRG. E. iv. v. 45.
Aggredere o magnos, aderit jam tempus, honores,
Intonfi montes, ipfæ jam carmina rupes,
ISAIAH, Ch. xl. v. 3, 4. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord! make frait in the defart a high way for our God! Every val ley fhall be exalted, and every mountain and bill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made ftrait, and the rough places plain. Ch. iv. v. 23. Break forth into finging, ye mountains! O foreft, and every tree therein! for the Lord hath redeemed Ifrael. P.
* Ch. xxxv. v. 2.
† Ch. xl. v. 3, 4.