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The Fall of Troy (book 1 - 6)   


Antilochus' corpse, sore sighing for their prince,
And by the Hellespont they buried him
With aching hearts. Around him groaning stood
The battle-eager sons of Argives, all,
Of love for Nestor, shrouded o'er with grief.
But that grey hero's heart was nowise crushed
By sorrow; for the wise man's soul endures
Bravely, and cowers not under affliction's stroke.
But Peleus' son, wroth for Antilochus
His dear friend, armed for vengeance terrible
Upon the Trojans. Yea, and these withal,
Despite their dread of mighty Achilles' spear,
Poured battle-eager forth their gates, for now
The Fates with courage filled their breasts, of whom
Many were doomed to Hades to descend,
Whence there is no return, thrust down by hands
Of Aeacus' son, who also was foredoomed
To perish that same day by Priam's wall.
Swift met the fronts of conflict: all the tribes
Of Troy's host, and the battle-biding Greeks,
Afire with that new-kindled fury of war.

Then through the foe the son of Peleus made
Wide havoc: all around the earth was drenched
With gore, and choked with corpses were the streams
Of Simois and Xanthus. Still he chased,
Still slaughtered, even to the city's walls;
For panic fell on all the host. And now
All had he slain, had dashed the gates to earth,
Rending them from their hinges, or the bolts,
Hurling himself against them, had he snapped,
And for the Danaans into Priam's burg
Had made a way, had utterly destroyed
That goodly town -- but now was Phoebus wroth
Against him with grim fury, when he saw
Those countless troops of heroes slain of him.
Down from Olympus with a lion-leap
He came: his quiver on his shoulders lay,
And shafts that deal the wounds incurable.
Facing Achilles stood he; round him clashed
Quiver and arrows; blazed with quenchless flame
His eyes, and shook the earth beneath his feet.
Then with a terrible shout the great God cried,
So to turn back from war Achilles awed
By the voice divine, and save from death the Trojans:
"Back from the Trojans, Peleus' son! Beseems not
That longer thou deal death unto thy foes,
Lest an Olympian God abase thy pride."

But nothing quailed the hero at the voice
Immortal, for that round him even now
Hovered the unrelenting Fates. He recked
Naught of the God, and shouted his defiance.
"Phoebus, why dost thou in mine own despite
Stir me to fight with Gods, and wouldst protect
The arrogant Trojans? Heretofore hast thou
By thy beguiling turned me from the fray,
When from destruction thou at the first didst save
Hector, whereat the Trojans all through Troy
Exulted. Nay, thou get thee back: return
Unto the mansion of the Blessed, lest
I smite thee -- ay, immortal though thou be!"

Then on the God he turned his back, and sped

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