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receive the shy-faced boys, and joyfully
trace in the features of the sons their sires.
After, with smiling eyes, the horsemen proud
have greeted each his kin in all the throng,
Epytides th' appointed signal calls,
and cracks his lash; in even lines they move,
then, Ioosely sundering in triple band,
wheel at a word and thrust their lances forth
in hostile ranks; or on the ample field
retreat or charge, in figure intricate
of circling troop with troop, and swift parade
of simulated war; now from the field
they flee with backs defenceless to the foe;
then rally, lance in rest—or, mingling all,
make common front, one legion strong and fair.
As once in Crete, the lofty mountain-isle,
that-fabled labyrinthine gallery
wound on through lightless walls, with thousand paths
which baffled every clue, and led astray
in unreturning mazes dark and blind:
so did the sons of Troy their courses weave
in mimic flights and battles fought for play,
like dolphins tumbling in the liquid waves,
along the Afric or Carpathian seas.
This game and mode of march Ascanius,
when Alba Longa's bastions proudly rose,
taught to the Latin people of the prime;
and as the princely Trojan and his train
were wont to do, so Alba to her sons
the custom gave; so glorious Rome at last
the heritage accepted and revered;
and still we know them for the “Trojan Band,”
and call the lads a “Troy.” Such was the end
of game and contest at Anchises' grave.
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