Telemachus arriving at Pylus, enquires of Nestor concerning Ulysses. Nestor relates to him all that he knows or has heard of the Greecians since their departure from the siege of Troy, but not being able to give him any satisfactory account of Ulysses, refers him to Menelaus. At evening Minerva quits Telemachus, but discovers herself in going. Nestor sacrifices to the Goddess, and the solemnity ended, Telemachus sets forth for Sparta in one of Nestors chariots, and accompanied by Nestors son, Pisistratus.
Ascended now the brazen vault with light
For the inhabitants of earth and heavn,
When in their bark at Pylus they arrived,
City of Neleus. On the shore they found
The people sacrificing; bulls they slew
Black without spot, to Neptune azure-haird.
On ranges nine of seats they sat; each range
Received five hundred, and to each they made
Allotment equal of nine sable bulls.
The feast was now begun; these eating sat
The entrails, those stood offring to the God
The thighs, his portion, when the Ithacans
Pushd right ashore, and, furling close the sails,
And making fast their moorings, disembarkd.
Forth came Telemachus, by Pallas led,
Whom thus the Goddess azure-eyed addressd.
Telemachus! there is no longer room
For bashful fear, since thou hast crossd the flood
With purpose to enquire what land conceals
Thy father, and what fate hath followd him.
Advance at once to the equestrian Chief
Nestor, within whose bosom lies, perhaps,
Advice well worthy of thy search; entreat
Himself, that he will tell thee only truth,
Who will not lye, for he is passing wise.
Ah Mentor! how can I advance, how greet
A Chief like him, unpractisd as I am
In managd phrase? Shame bids the youth beware
How he accosts the man of many years.
Telemachus! Thou wilt, in part, thyself
Fit speech devise, and heavn will give the rest;
For thou wast neither born, nor hast been traind
To manhood, under unpropitious Powrs.
With nimble steps attending, soon arrived
Among the multitude. There Nestor sat,
And Nestors sons, while, busily the feast
Tending, his numrous followers roasted, some,
The viands, some, transfixd them with the spits.
They seeing guests arrived, together all
Advanced, and, grasping courteously their hands,
Invited them to sit; but first, the son
Of Nestor, young Pisistratus, approachd,
Who, fastning on the hands of both, beside
The banquet placed them, where the beach was spread
With fleeces, and where Thrasymedes sat
His brother, and the hoary Chief his Sire.
To each a portion of the inner parts
He gave, then filld a golden cup with wine,
Which, tasted first, he to the daughter bore
Of Jove the Thundrer, and her thus bespake.
For ye have chanced on Neptunes festival;
And, when thou hast, thyself, libation made
Duly, and prayr, deliver to thy friend
The genrous juice, that he may also make
Libation; for he, doubtless, seeks, in prayer
The Immortals, of whose favour all have need.
But, since he younger is, and with myself
Coeval, first I give the cup to thee.
Which Pallas gladly from a youth received
So just and wise, who to herself had first
The golden cup presented, and in prayr
Fervent the Sovreign of the Seas adored.
To us thy suppliants the desired effect
Of this our voyage; glory, first, bestow
On Nestor and his offspring both, then grant
To all the Pylians such a gracious boon
As shall requite their noble offring well.
Grant also to Telemachus and me
To voyage hence, possessd of what we sought
When hither in our sable bark we came.
Accomplishd. To Telemachus she gave
The splendid goblet next, and in his turn
Like prayr Ulysses son also preferrd.
And now (the banquet from the spits withdrawn)
They next distributed sufficient share
To each, and all were sumptuously regaled.
At length, (both hunger satisfied and thirst)
Thus Nestor, the Gerenian Chief, began.
After repast, what guests we have received.
Our guests! who are ye? Whence have ye the waves
Ploughd hither? Come ye to transact concerns
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