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from wrathful flame? Who shielded then the fleet,
I pray you tell, from bursting storm of fire?
From hoary eld the tale, but its renown
sings on forever. When Aeneas first
on Phrygian Ida hewed the sacred wood
for rib and spar, and soon would put to sea,
that mighty mother of the gods, they say,
the Berecynthian goddess, thus to Jove
addressed her plea: “Grant, O my son, a boon,
which thy dear mother asks, who aided thee
to quell Olympian war. A grove I have
of sacred pine, long-loved from year to year.
On lofty hill it grew, and thither came
my worshippers with gifts, in secret gloom
of pine-trees dark and shadowing maple-boughs.;
these on the Dardan warrior at his need
I, not unwilling, for his fleet bestowed.
But I have fears. O, Iet a parent's prayer
in this prevail, and bid my care begone!
Let not rude voyages nor the shock of storm
my ships subdue, but let their sacred birth
on my charmed hills their strength and safety be!”
Then spake her son, who guides the wheeling spheres:
“Wouldst thou, my mother, strive to oversway
the course of Fate? What means this prayer of thine?
Can it be granted ships of mortal mould
to wear immortal being? Wouldst thou see
Aeneas pass undoubting and secure
through doubtful strait and peril? On what god
was e'er such power bestowed? Yet will I grant
a different boon. Whatever ships shall find
a safe Ausonian haven, and convey
safe through the seas to yon Laurentian plain
the Dardan King, from such I will remove
their perishable shapes, and bid them be
sea-nymphs divine, like Nereus' daughters fair,
Doto and Galatea, whose white breasts
divide the foaming wave.” He said, and swore
by his Tartarean brother's mournful stream,
the pitch-black floods and dark engulfing shore
of Styx; then great Jove bowed his head, and all
Olympus quaked at his consenting brow.
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