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I have no doubt that it relates to the assistance generously given by Hiero to the Cumeans, when they were attacked a second time by the Tyrrheneans, who possessed some naval force, and were jealous of the florishing state of Cuma and of its increasing power. The most circumstantial account of these facts with which I am acquainted, may be found in Diodorus, in the eleventh book of his Historical Library: "When Acestorides was archon in Athens, he sent to Hiero a considerable number of gallies, to succour the Cumeans of Italy, who had implored him to assist them against the Tyrrheneans, who were powerful at sea. The commanders of this navy went to Cuma, united with the Cumeans, gave battle to the Tyrrheneans, and gained a great victory, which relieving the Cumeans from their anxiety, they returned to Syracuse." The anonymous author of the chronological list of the Olympiads only remarks two hostile enterprises undertaken by the Tyrrheneans against Cuma, and that both ended unfavorably to the aggressors. The first occurred in the first year of the 64th Olympiad, which corre sponds with the year 524 before our era; and the second, about half a century after, in the third year of the 76th Olympiad, or the year 474 before J. C.3 I understand from chronological arguments, which any one may easily combine, that the assistance of Hiero, to which we suppose that the author of our inscription alludes, must have been granted to the Cumeans in the second defensive war which they supported against their enemies.4
Pindar has not passed over this generous action of Hiero. The verses in which he celebrates two of the most brilliant victories of the Syracusan princes of the Dinomenean family, that over the Tyrrheneans near Cuma, and that other, renowned in Grecian history, over the Carthaginians near Imera in Sicily, are of the greatest beauty.5
1 Diodorus Hist. Lib. vol. i, p. 442, ed. Wesseling. in fol.
2 Intitled zuvaywyn iorogiwy, and published by Joseph Scaliger as the Chronicon Eusebii.
3 Here are his own words: Ολυμπιάδος ἔδ' ἔτει α' οἱ κατὰ τὴν Ἰταλίαν Κυμαίοι πολλὰς Τυῤῥηνῶν καὶ Ὀπικῶν μυριάδας ἐνίκησαν.” And afterwards: “ Ὀλυμπιάδος οτ' ἔτει γ' οἱ Τυῤῥηνοὶ ὑπὸ Κυμαίων ἡττηθέντες δεινῶς ἐταπεινώθησαν.”
The diligent and learned Cluverio has not forgotten these places in his singular itinerary compilation, Italia Antiqua, lib. iv. p. 1106. ed. Lugd. Batav. 1624. in fol.
+ See note 1. p. 136.
5 Pyth. i. 137. I cannot help transcribing these transcendant verses,
From these combinations I do not think it presumptuous to conclude, that the commanders of the Syracusan navy, after having gained so brilliant a victory, eagerly repaired to Olympia, to join their Sovereign, who, to mark bis satisfaction, commanded that their valor should be recorded on the great monument which he had dedicated to Jupiter Olympius, and that his orders were executed by Dinomenes, his son.
that my reader piñéλλŋv may at least find something beautiful in this little treatise:
Λίσσομαι, νεῦσον, Κρονίων, ἅμερον
Οφρα κατ ̓ οἶκον ὁ Φοιτ
νιξ, ὁ Τυρσανῶν τ' ἀλαλατὸς ἔχῃ,
Τὰν πρὸ Κύμας
Οκυπόρων ἀπὸ ναῶν
*Ος σφιν ἐν πόντῳ βάλεθ ̓ ἁλικίαν,
Ἑλλάδ ̓ ἐξέλκων βαρείας
Πὰς μὲν Σαλαμῖνος Αθηναίων χάριν
Μισθόν· ἐν Σπάρτᾳ δ' ἐρέω
Πρὸ Κιθαιρῶνος μάχαν
Ταῖσι Μῆδοι μὲν κάμον ἀγκυλότοξοι·
Πὰρ δέ γε τὴν εὔνδρον ἀκτὰν
Ιμέρα, παίδεσσιν ὕμνον
Τὸν ἐδέξαντ ̓ ἀμφ ̓ ἀρετᾷ,
Πολεμίων ἀνδρῶν καμόντων.
Then grant, Ο son of Saturn, grant my pray'r!
And may the hardy Tuscan never dare
To vex with clam'rous war Sicilia's main;
Wreck'd by his stormy arms their groaning fleets were lost.
What terrors ! what destruction them assail'd!
Hurl'd from their riven decks what numbers died!
When o'er their might Sicilia's chief prevail'd,
Their youth o'erwhelming in the foamy tide,
Greece from impending servitude to save.
Famed in thy triumphs; and my tuneful lyre
To Sparta's sons with sweetest praise should tell,
Beneath Citharon's shade what Medish archers fell.
Thy sons, Dinomenes, my lyre demand,
If I have discovered the true meaning of the inscription, which I cannot absolutely affirm, the sense of it will be as follows:
Hiero the son of Dinomenes, and the Syracusans who were victorious at Cuma, coming by Thurium, erected this monu
"Si quid novisti rectius istis,
Candidus imperti; si non, his utere mecum."
ITHACA is really a beautiful rock. I have been almost all round it, for the second time, during the last three days.
I had only two books with me in my knapsack, the Odyssey, and the admirable work of my learned friend Sir William Gell.1
Your Excellency knows that I have no inclination to what is called sentimentality.
But I can aver, that, with you, I only pretend to simple and natural sentiment: I behold with the greatest pleasure the beautiful and classic height, called by the inhabitants the Mount of the Eagle, ἀετὸς, ἀετὸ-βουνὸν,3 clothed in the brilliant verdure of April, or red with the glowing colors of sun-set; I can affirm that every one, even those with the least degree of enthusiasm, if they understand Greek, will read the 14th canto of the Odyssey with singular and almost domestic pleasure, at the unchanged
On the Geography and Antiquities of Ithaca, in 4to.
2 The Italians, who rarely suffer from this ultramontane malady, will pardon me this word, which, fortunately for them, does not belong to their fine language. I wish to express by it, an extraordinary delicacy of sentiment, an extreme sensibility, a disposition of the nerves and fibres to feel in an excessive manner, (super-sentire, imepaιoláveσlai) any thing fine or great in nature or art, &c. which we of colder dispositions only feel. Besides the momentary transports, and a great number of local exclamations (which are of no consequence, since no one pays any attention to them) arising from this disposition, it leads some of our authors, and almost all our authoresses of Travels, to repaint amply in print the beauty and grandeur of nature. These delightful descriptions are of some consequence, as they might at least spoil the taste of those who read them. Certainly it is a bold and arduous undertaking to describe the extraordinary beauties of Nature, on which the Almighty has lavished all the colors of the universe, in a thousand various tints. 3 Which unites the two parts of the island, the Neios and the Neritos of the Odyssey.
The summit of the mountain års is covered with ancient polygonal walls, which have been perfectly described by Sir W. Gell. I consider it as the site of the dwellings of the heroes of the Odyssey.
fountain of Arethusa, under the majestic rock of Kópa (which still bears the name of Kóaxa), and near the house of the faithful Eumaus.
The work of the learned and diligent Sir W. Gell is certainly valuable. It would be a great advantage to science if we had many such monographs on Greek locality. But that part which contains the combinations and results of ancient literature, is weaker than that which is purely topographical. In this last respect almost every one is satisfied with him. Two only of these localities seem to me to want further elucidation: 1st, a part of the island towards the North-west, and principally that height near the place called Porto Polis (Пós-λpán) where there are still some remains of polygonal walls, extremely ancient: 2d, to discover and establish, by ermeneutic arguments taken from the Odyssey, another locality for the Grotto of the Nymphs (Odyss. Canto viii. vs. 96.), and the discovery of the πολυπλάγκτος Ulysses, and that the little bay now called Δεξιά could not be the port of Phorkys with the Grotto of the Nymphs.2
If I am interested so much by ancient Ithaca, I certainly have not felt an inferior pleasure in the modern island. The principal object of Lord Guilford in this journey, in which I have accompanied him since our parting in Rome, is to arrange in a better and more definite manner the public instruction in the Ionian isles, and to establish a university, an institution extremely necessary and of good augury to the interesting Greek nation. In order to promote the execution of his benevolent designs, the Earl of Guilford was lately made President of the university and of the department of public instruction in these islands, by His Majesty the King of England, and confirmed in his title by the Ionian senate resident at Corfu. I have every reason to believe that this true and generous friend of the Greeks is satisfied with his reception in the principal
'See Gell on the Geography and Antiquities of Ithaca, p. 40. seq. 2 It cannot be the port of Phorkys, for various reasons, which perhaps I shall explain elsewhere. Dexia being in the great port, and thus, as one may say, under the eyes of the pretenders (pónoi) of the Odyssey. would not be a proper place for the discovery of Ulysses. As all the localities of this fine rock perfectly accord with the events in the Odys sey, and with the prudence and circumspection for which its heroes are remarkable, I am persuaded that the localities of the Grotto of the Nymphs and of the discovery of Ulysses may be found in some other bay, corresponding to the port of Phorkys of Homer, in the opposite and more southerly part of the island.
islands of Corfu, Cephalonia, and Zante, which we have lately visited—but in no place have we met with so sincere a zeal for this important object, with so active and truly patriotic an enthusiasm, as in the small and poor island of Ithaca. I have felt great pleasure in witnessing the universal joy which was produced by the account of Lord Guilford's plans for the improvement of public instruction, and the foundation of a university. The brave Ithacans, animated by the example of their chiefs, the Regent Count Bretos and Signor Zavo, (Lords of the country, who have often hospitably conferred favors on us foreigners,) and the zeal of their English resident Captain Dumas, have voluntarily offered more considerable subsidies, in land, materials for building, &c. than could have been expected from so small a place.
But this is not the only reason which has induced Lord Guilford to prefer Ithaca for the establishment of the university, The decision on the choice of the place of erection belongs to the Ionian senate, and as I am persuaded from the wisdom of that illustrious body that it will consider the opinions of the respective authorities with the greatest care and attention, I cherish the hope that the beautiful and ancient Ithaca, and not S. Giorgio in Cephalonia (which was mentioned in some English newspapers,) will possess the rising institution, and thus become the nurse, or, as one may say, the faithful Euryclea, of a youth which forms the hope of Greece. Perhaps some schools may be opened in the Ionian University, in the approaching year, whose young professors, who will be all Greeks, have been for some years preparing themselves to fulfil their important destiny, in English, German and Italian colleges.
To those who are acquainted with the poetical and historical interest of Ithaca, which has been rendered famous by "That master of the lofty song, who sours like an eagle above all others," it is gratifying to think that on this classic rock, a light will be kindled that will one day disperse the darkness which yet covers this degraded and unfortunate, but still beautiful and celebrated country.-May God accept the augury! The light which he kindles in the human mind, is not only a light, but a flame, not only beautiful but powerful, not only splendid and illustrious, but sparkling and ardent,—that light is sufficient, not only to dissolve the lead of ignorance, but also the iron of despotism.