Albion. In legendary history this word is variously accounted for. One derivation is from Albion, a giant, son of Neptune, its first discoverer, who ruled over the island for forty-four years.
(2) Another derivation is Albia, eldest of the fifty daughters of D iocletian king of Syria. These fifty ladies all married on the same day, and all murdered their husbands on the wedding night. By way of punishment, they were cast adrift in a ship, unmanned; but the wind drove the vessel to our coast, where these Syrian damsels disembarked. Here they lived the rest of their lives, and married with the aborigines, a lawless crew of devils. Milton mentions this legend, and naïvely adds, It is too absurd and unconscionably gross to be believed. Its resemblance to the fifty daughters of Danaos is palpable.
(3) Drayton, in his Polyolbion, says that Albion came from Rome, was the first martyr of the land, and dying for the faiths sake, left his name to the country, where Offa subsequently reared to him a rich and sumptuous shrine, with a monastery attached.Song xvi.
Albion, king of Briton, when Oberon held his court in what is now called Kensington Gardens. T. Tickell has a poem upon this subject.
Albion wars with Joves Son. Albion, son of Neptune, warred with Herculês, son of Jove. Neptune, dissatisfied with the share of his fathers kingdom awarded to him by Jupiter, aspired to dethrone his brother, but Herculês took Joves part, and Albion was discomfited.
Drayton: Polyolbion, iv. (1612).
Alborak, the animal brought by Gabriel to convey Mahomet to the seventh heaven. It had the face of a man, the cheeks of a horse, the wings of an eagle, and spoke with a human voice.
Albracca, a castle of Cathay(China), to which Angelica retires in grief when she finds her love for Rinaldo is not reciprocated. Here she is besieged by Agricanê king of Tartary, who is resolved to win her.Bojardo: Orlando Innamorato (1495).
Albumazar, an Arabian astronomer (776885).
By the astrologye that he hath naturally
Conceyued and caught; for he was never taught
By Albumazar, the astronomer,
Nor by Ptholomy, prince of astronomy.
J. Skelton: Philip Sparrow (time, Henry VIII.).
(Tomkins wrote a play so called, which was performed before James I. in Trinity College Hall, March 7th, 1614. After the Restoration, this comedy was revived, and Dryden wrote a prologue to it.)
Alcairo, the modern name of Memphis (Egypt).
Nor great Alcairo such magnificence
Equalled, in all their glories.
Milton: Paradise Lost, i. 717 (1665).
Alceste , Alcestis, or Alcestês, daughter of Pelias and wife of Admêtus. On his wedding day Admêtus neglected to offer sacrifice to Diana, but Apollo induced the Fates to spare his life, if he could find a voluntary substitute. His bride offered to die for him, but Herculês brought her back from the world of shadows.
(Euripidês has a Greek tragedy on the subject (Alcestis); Glück has an opera (Alceste), libretto by Calzabigi (1765); Philippi Quinault produced a French tragedy entitled Alceste, in 1674; and Lagrange-Chancel in 1694 produced a French tragedy on the same subject.)
(Her story is told by W. Morris, in The Earthly Paradise, June, 1868.)
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