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Cupid straightway
obeyed his mother's word and bore the gifts,
each worthy of a king, as offerings
to greet the Tyrian throne; and as he went
he clasped Achates' friendly hand, and smiled.
Father Aeneas now, and all his band
of Trojan chivalry, at social feast,
on lofty purple-pillowed couches lie;
deft slaves fresh water on their fingers pour,
and from reed-woven basketry renew
the plenteous bread, or bring smooth napery
of softest weave; fifty handmaidens serve,
whose task it is to range in order fair
the varied banquet, or at altars bright
throw balm and incense on the sacred fires.
A hundred more serve with an equal band
of beauteous pages, whose obedient skill
piles high the generous board and fills the bowl.
The Tyrians also to the festal hall
come thronging, and receive their honor due,
each on his painted couch; with wondering eyes
Aeneas' gifts they view, and wondering more,
mark young Iulus' radiant brows divine,
his guileful words, the golden pall he bears,
and broidered veil with saffron lilies bound.
The Tyrian Queen ill-starred, already doomed
to her approaching woe, scanned ardently,
with kindling cheek and never-sated eyes,
the precious gifts and wonder-gifted boy.
He round Aeneas' neck his arms entwined,
fed the deep yearning of his seeming sire,
then sought the Queen's embrace; her eyes, her soul
clave to him as she strained him to her breast.
For Dido knew not in that fateful hour
how great a god betrayed her. He began,
remembering his mother (she who bore
the lovely Acidalian Graces three),
to make the dear name of Sichaeus fade,
and with new life, new love, to re-possess
her Iong-since slumbering bosom's Iost desire.

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load focus Notes (John Conington, 1876)
load focus Notes (Georgius Thilo, 1881)
load focus Latin (J. B. Greenough, 1900)
load focus English (John Dryden)
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