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Then the famous god of the two strong arms answered her: “Be of good cheer, neither let these things distress thy heart. Would that I might so surely avail to hide him afar from dolorous death, [465] when dread fate cometh upon him, as verily goodly armour shall be his, such that in aftertime many a one among the multitude of men shall marvel, whosoever shall behold it.” So saying he left her there and went unto his bellows, and he turned these toward the fire and bade them work. [470] And the bellows, twenty in all, blew upon the melting-vats, sending forth a ready blast of every force, now to further him as he laboured hard, and again in whatsoever way Hephaestus might wish and his work go on. And on the fire he put stubborn bronze and tin [475] and precious gold and silver; and thereafter he set on the anvil-block a great anvil, and took in one hand a massive hammer, and in the other took he the tongs. First fashioned he a shield, great and sturdy, adorning it cunningly in every part, and round about it set a bright rim, [480] threefold and glittering, and therefrom made fast a silver baldric. Five were the layers of the shield itself; and on it he wrought many curious devices with cunning skill. Therein he wrought the earth, therein the heavens therein the sea, and the unwearied sun, and the moon at the full, [485] and therein all the constellations wherewith heaven is crowned—the Pleiades, and the Hyades and the mighty Orion, and the Bear, that men call also the Wain, that circleth ever in her place, and watcheth Orion, and alone hath no part in the baths of Ocean.

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