continuing forever or indefinitely
Of bodies chang'd to various forms, I sing:
Ye Gods, from whom these miracles did spring,
Inspire my numbers with celestial heat;
'Till I my long laborious work complete:
perpetual tenour to my rhymes,
Deduc'd from Nature's birth, to Caesar's times.
of or relating to or characteristic of the planet Earth
Before the seas, and this
And Heav'n's high canopy, that covers all,
One was the face of Nature; if a face:
Rather a rude and indigested mass:
having a common boundary or edge
The next of kin,
And foes are sunder'd, by a larger space.
difficult to use or handle because of size or weight
Earth sinks beneath, and draws a num'rous throng
Of pondrous, thick,
unwieldy seeds along.
Some part, in Earth are swallow'd up, the most
ample oceans, disembogu'd, are lost.
a slight wind
Westward, the wanton
Zephyr wings his flight;
Pleas'd with the remnants of departing light:
sediment that has settled at the bottom of a liquid
High o'er the clouds, and empty realms of wind,
The God a clearer space for Heav'n design'd;
Where fields of light, and liquid aether flow;
Purg'd from the pondrous
dregs of Earth below.
"Dregs" refers to the lowest part--like the dregs of society. Here, "dregs" doesn't seem so low, because once purged of its ponderous ("having great mass and weight and unwieldiness") parts, it can ascend to Heaven as stars.
change completely the nature or appearance of
Thus, while the mute creation downward bend
Their sight, and to their earthly mother tend,
Man looks aloft; and with erected eyes
Beholds his own hereditary skies.
From such rude principles our form began;
And earth was metamorphos'd into Man.
made of or resembling brass, as in color or hardness
To this came next in course, the
A warlike offspring, prompt to bloody rage,
Not impious yet...
In this section, Ovid describes the different ages (golden, silver, bronze, iron). "Brazen" refers to the bronze age, but the example sentence suggests that the word is also being used to describe the nature of the men during that age--their warlike rage could be "unrestrained by convention or propriety" but not yet to the point of being disrespectful to the gods.
surround so as to force to give up
Nor were the Gods themselves more safe above;
beleaguer'd Heav'n the giants move.
must be kept sacred
Let me this holy protestation make,
By Hell, and Hell's
I try'd whatever in the godhead lay:
But gangren'd members must be lopt away,
Before the nobler parts are tainted to decay.
having or showing or expressing reverence for a deity
The nations trembled with a
All anxious for their earthly Thunderer:
causing fear or dread or terror
dire experiment he chose, to prove
If I were mortal, or undoubted Jove:
stick or hold together and resist separation
His mantle, now his hide, with rugged hairs
Cleaves to his back; a famish'd face he bears;
His arms descend, his shoulders sink away
To multiply his legs for chase of prey.
a heavy rain
His dire artill'ry thus dismist, he bent
His thoughts to some securer punishment:
Concludes to pour a watery
And what he durst not burn, resolves to drown.
marked by violent force
Then, clad in colours of a various dye,
Junonian Iris breeds a new supply
To feed the clouds:
impetuous rain descends;
The bearded corn beneath the burden bends:
an earnest attempt at persuasion
exhortation needs; your pow'rs employ:
And this bad world, so Jove requires, destroy.
the appearance conveyed by a person's face
A thin circumference of land appears;
And Earth, but not at once, her
And peeps upon the seas from upper grounds;
a chamber that is used as a grave
Forbid it Heav'n, said she, that I shou'd tear
Those holy reliques from the
the elementary stage of any subject
Then swell'd, and swelling, by degrees grew warm;
And took the
rudiments of human form.
not selective of a single class or person
But every green alike by Phoebus worn,
promiscuous grace, his flowing locks adorn.
"Promiscuous" also means "casual and unrestrained in sexual behavior"--this would be a fitting description of Phoebus/Apollo that sets the mood for the next story. But the example sentence is using the word to describe how every plant that is green has been used to decorate the hair of both Apollo and the winners of the Pythian games.
driven by lust
He sees the stripling, while his bow he bends,
And thus insults him: Thou
Are arms like these for children to employ?
radiating or as if radiating light
One shaft is pointed with
To bribe the love, and make the lover bold:
choose and follow
Because thou canst not be
My mistress, I
espouse thee for my tree:
Be thou the prize of honour, and renown;
The deathless poet, and the poem, crown.
"Espouse" also means "take in marriage" but since Daphne is now a tree, Apollo can't marry her, so instead, he chooses her to be the symbol of victory, which seems odd, since he was defeated in her pursuit of her and she didn't exactly get the help she wanted. But "the grateful tree was pleas'd with what he said; And shook the shady honours of her head."
On this occasion hither they resort;
To pay their
homage, and to make their court.
belonging to or befitting a supreme ruler
Her, just returning from her father's brook,
Jove had beheld, with a desiring look:
And, Oh fair daughter of the flood, he said,
Worthy alone of Jove's
make less visible or unclear
Mean-time the jealous Juno, from on high,
Survey'd the fruitful fields of Arcady;
And wonder'd that the mist shou'd over-run
The face of day-light, and
obscure the sun.
the immediate descendants of a person
But now the husband of a herd must be
Thy mate, and bell'wing sons thy
Oh, were I mortal, death might bring relief:
But now my God-head but extends my grief:
Thus Argus lies in pieces, cold, and pale;
And all his hundred eyes, with all their light,
Are clos'd at once, in one perpetual night.
These Juno takes, that they no more may fail,
And spreads them in her peacock's
clear of accusation, blame, or doubt with supporting proof
He spoke in public, told it to my face;
Nor durst I
vindicate the dire disgrace:
Even I, the bold, the sensible of wrong,
Restrain'd by shame, was forc'd to hold my tongue.