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But if perchaunce that Amathus the rich in mettals, weere
Demaunded if it would have bred the Propets it would sweare,
Yea even as gladly as the folke whose brewes sumtyme did beare
A payre of welked homes: whereof they Cerastes named are.
Before theyr doore an Altar stood of Jove that takes the care
Of alyents and of travellers, which lothsome was to see,
For lewdnesse wrought theron. If one that had a straunger bee
Had lookt thereon, he would have thought there had on it beene killd
Sum sucking calves or lambes. The blood of straungers there was spilld.
Dame Venus sore offended at this wicked sacrifyse,
To leave her Cities and the land of Cyprus did devyse.
But then bethinking her, shee sayd: What hath my pleasant ground,
What have my Cities trespassed? what fault in them is found?
Nay rather let this wicked race by exyle punnisht beene,
Or death, or by sum other thing that is a meane betweene
Both death and exyle. What is that? save only for to chaunge
Theyr shape. In musing with herself what figure were most straunge,
Shee cast her eye uppon a home. And therewithall shee thought
The same to bee a shape ryght meete uppon them to bee brought:
And so shee from theyr myghty limbes theyr native figure tooke,
And turnd them into boystous Bulles with grim and cruell looke.
Yit durst the filthy Propets stand in stiffe opinion that
Dame Venus was no Goddesse till shee beeing wroth thereat,
To make theyr bodies common first compelld them everychone
And after chaungd theyr former kynd. For when that shame was gone,
And that they wexed brazen faast, shee turned them to stone,
In which betweene their former shape was diffrence small or none.

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  • Cross-references to this page (1):
    • Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854), A´MATHUS
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