Poemata Minora, Volume II/To the Old Pagan Religion

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JOVE OR ΖΕΥΣ


IMP. C. VALERIVS.
FLAV. CONSTANTINVS.
RELIGIONEM. CHRISTIANAM.
FALIEBAT. FIDEM.
IMPERI. ROMANI. ET.
IMP. THEODOSIVS.
CVLTVM. DEORVM
ANTIQVORVM.
PROHIBERAT.



PAGANVS. POSTREMVS.



CVLTVS. DEORVM. ANTIQVORVM.

TO THE OLD PAGAN RELIGION.


Olympian Gods! how can I let ye go
And pin my faith to this new Christian creed?
Can I resign the deities I know
For him who on a cross for man did bleed?


How in my weakness can my hopes depend
On one lone God, though mighty be his pow'r?
Why can Jove's host no more assistance lend,
To soothe my pains, and cheer my troubled hour?


Are there no Dryads on these wooded mounts
O'er which I oft in desolation roam?
Are there no Naiads in these crystal founts?
Nor Nereids upon the Ocean foam?


Fast spreads the new; the older faith declines.
The name of Christ resounds upon the air.
But my wrack'd soul in solitude repines
And gives the Gods their last-receivèd pray'r.