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which unto Libyan shores were fain to shift
italia's future throne) thus Venus spoke:
“'T were mad to spurn such favor, or by choice
be numbered with thy foes. But can it be
that fortune on thy noble counsel smiles?
To me Fate shows but dimly whether Jove
unto the Trojan wanderers ordains
a common city with the sons of Tyre,
with mingling blood and sworn, perpetual peace.
His wife thou art; it is thy rightful due
to plead to know his mind. Go, ask him, then!
For humbly I obey!” With instant word
Juno the Queen replied: “Leave that to me!
But in what wise our urgent task and grave
may soon be sped, I will in brief unfold
to thine attending ear. A royal hunt
in sylvan shades unhappy Dido gives
for her Aeneas, when to-morrow's dawn
uplifts its earliest ray and Titan's beam
shall first unveil the world. But I will pour
black storm-clouds with a burst of heavy hail
along their way; and as the huntsmen speed
to hem the wood with snares, I will arouse
all heaven with thunder. The attending train
shall scatter and be veiled in blinding dark,
while Dido and her hero out of Troy
to the same cavern fly. My auspices
I will declare—if thou alike wilt bless;
and yield her in true wedlock for his bride.
Such shall their spousal be!” To Juno's will
Cythera's Queen inclined assenting brow,
and laughed such guile to see.
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