Page:The works of Horace - Christopher Smart.djvu/103

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three-formed goddess, who thrice invoked, hearest young women in labor, and savest them from death; sacred to thee be this pine that overshadows my villa, which I, at the completion of every year, joyful will present with the blood of a boar-pig, just meditating his oblique attack.


ODE XXIII.
TO PHIDYLE.

My rustic Phidyle, if you raise your suppliant hands to heaven at the new moon, and appease the household gods with frankincense, and this year’s fruits, and a ravening swine; the fertile vine shall neither feel the pestilential south-west, nor the corn the barren blight, or your dear brood the sickly season in the fruit-bearing autumn. For the destined victim, which is pastured in the snowy Algidus among the oaks and holm trees, or thrives in the Albanian meadows, with its throat shall stain the axes of the priests. It is not required of you, who are crowning our little gods with rosemary and the brittle myrtle, to propitiate them with a great slaughter of sheep. If an innocent hand touches a clear, a magnificent victim does not pacify the offended Penates more acceptably, than a consecrated cake and crackling salt.