Page images

1018 Bosphorus and Bosporus,

Two narrow straits, situated at the confines of Europe and Asia. One was called Cimmerian, and joined the Paulus Mootis to the Euxine, and is called, by the moderns, the Straits of Čaffa ; and the other, which was called the Thracian Bosporus, and now the Straits of Constantinople, made a communication between the Euxine Sea and the Propontis, so very narrow, that in a calm day, persons on the opposite banks could talk to

each other. 1019 Or when Ulysses on the larboard shunn'd.

King of Ithaca, celebrated for his wisdorn and great exploits at Troy; being ignorant of the art of navigation, he was shipwrecked, and driven from one island to another, in the Mediterranean Sea, during ten years, before he returned to his kingdom, which was in great confusion during his absence. He was aware of the power of the Sirens, who, it is said, lived in a small island near the Cape Palermo in Sicily. The Sirens were informed, by an oracle, that as soon as any one passed by them, without suffering themselves to be charmed by their songs, they should perish; and their melody prevailed, till Ulysses had 'to pass, when he ordered his companions to stop their ears with wax, and himself to be tied to the mast of his ship, and no attention to be paid to his commands, should he wish to stay and listen to This was

a salutary precaution, Ulysses made signs for his companions to stop ; but they were disregarded, and the fatal coast was passed with safety. The history and adven- 6

the song.

tures of Ulysses, during his return from the Trojan war to Ithaca, form the subject of

Homer's Odyssey. 1020 Charybdis.

A dangerous whirlpool on the coast of Sicily, opposite another whirlpool called Scylla, on the coast of Italy. It was supposed, that Charybdis was an avaricious woman, who stole the oxen of Hercules, for which theft, she was struck with

thunder by Jupiter, and changed into a whirlpool. 1033 God and good angels guard by special grace.

Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salva

tion? Hebrews, i. 14. 1049 With opal towers.

A precious stone, almost of all colours; said to be good for the eyes; the floors of heaven were

said to be paved with such shining stones. 1050 Of living sapphire.

A clear, hard and precious stone, of the colour of the sky, with sparkles of gold, and the hardest next to the diamond.



since God is light. The Omnipotent began, by calling light into existence, as indispensably necessary to the great and glorious scene which was about to take place. God himself is called “Light, and in him is no darkness at all.” Without it we could pursue no rational object, nor enjoy any real comfort. So if our minds are not enlightened with the knowledge of God, as he is revealed in the scriptures of truth, all our works will be done in disorder, and the end of them will be misery. There can be no fitness, regularity or utility in what we do, unless we walk by this light, and conform to its unerring directions. “Thy word,” says the psalmist, “is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my paths.” Psalms, cxix. 105. Whose fountain who shall tell.

Where is the way where light dwelleth? Job, Xxxviii. 19.

and at the voice.
Oh! Thou, whose mighty voice, “Let there be

Dread chaos heard, when the great sun from night
Burst forth, and dæmon shadows fled away,
And the green earth sprung beautiful to day;



Oh! merciful in judgment, hear our prayer ;
Behold the world which thou hast made so fair,
And man, the mourner, man, the sinner, spare!

Rev. W. L. BOWLES. 14 Escap'd the Stygian pool.

Tartarus, or the infernal regions.
With other notes than to th' Orphéan lyre.

Orpheus received his lyre from Apollo, upon which he played with such a masterly hand, that the most rapid rivers ceased to flow, the savage beasts forgot their wildness, and the mountains came to listen to his song; Eurydice was the nymph who made an impression on the musician's heart, and their nuptials were celebrated. As Eurydice was running on the grass, a serpent bit her foot, and she died of the wound; her loss was severely felt by Orpheus, and he resolved to recover her, or perish in the attempt. With his lyre in his hand, he gained admission into the palace of Pluto, who was charmed with the melody of his strains: and, as the poets say, the wheel of Ixion stopped ; Tantalus forgot his thirst; the Furies, Pluto and Proserpine relented, and promised to restore Eurydice, on condition, that he should not look on her, till he came to the confines of the regions; he gladly accepted the conditions, and, when in sight of the upper regions, he looked, and saw her vanish from his sight. He attempted to follow; but was refused admittance, and the only comfort now remaining was his lyre. He separated himself from society, and the Thracian women, whom he had offended by his coldness, attacked him while they celebrated the orgies of Bacchus, tore his body in


pieces, and threw his head into the Hebrus, which articulated the words, Eurydice, Eurydice, as it was carried down the stream into the Ægean Sea. Orpheus, after death, received divine honours, the muses gave an honourable burial, and his lyre

became one of the constellations in the heavens. 19 Taught by the heavenly muse.

Apollo wos worshipped under the names of Phoebus and the Sun, and represented as the god

of the fine arts. 22

but thou
Revisit'st not these eyes, that roll in vain.
Where couldst thou words of such a compass find?
Whence furnish such a vast expanse of mind ?
Just heaven thee like Tiresias to requite,
Rewards with prophecy thy loss of sight.


where the muses haunt. The nine muses were the fabulous daughters of Jupiter and Mnemosyne or Memory; the goddesses of the arts and sciences, music and poetry, and are called, by the poets, the daughters of Memory, because it is to that mental endowment mankind are indebted for their progress in knowledge. They are represented as dancing in a circle, round Apollo and singing in chorus ; to intimate the near and indissoluble connection which exists between the liberal arts and sciences. They are said to inhabit the mountains Parnassus,

Picrus and Pindus. 30 Thee, Sion.

Sing us one of the songs of Sion. Psalms, CXxxvii. 3.

« PreviousContinue »