The Transformation of Battus to a Touchstone

Sore wept the Centaur, and to Phaebus pray'd;
But how could Phaebus give the Centaur Aid?
Degraded of his Pow'r by angry Jove ,
In Elis Then a Herd of Beeves he drove;
And wielded in his Hand a Staff of Oak,
And o'er his Shoulders threw the Shepherd's Cloak;
On sev'n compacted Reeds he us'd to play,
And on his Rural Pipe to waste the Day.
As once, attentive to his Pipe, he play'd,
The crasty Hermes from the God convey'd
A Drove, that sep'rate from their Fellows stray'd.
The Theft an old insidious Peasant view'd,
(They call'd him Battus in the Neighbourhood)
Hir'd by a wealthy Pylian Prince to feed
His fav'rite Mares, and watch the gen'rous Breed.
The thievish God suspected him, and took
The Hind aside, and thus in Whispers spoke;
" Discover not the Theft, whoe'er thou be,
" And take that milk-white Heifer for thy Fee.
" Go, Stranger, cries the Clown, securely on,
" That Stone shall sooner tell, and show'd a Stone.
The God withdrew, but strait return'd again,
In Speech and Habit like a Country Swain;
And cries out, " Neighbour, hast thou seen a Stray
" Of Bullocks and of Heifers pass this Way?
" In the Recov'ry of my Cattle join,
" A Bullock and a Heifer shall be thine.
The Peasant quick replies, " You'll find 'em there
" In yon dark Vale; and in the Vale they were.
The Double Bribe had his false Heart beguil'd:
The God, successful in the Tryal, smil'd;
" And dost thou thus betray my self to Me?
" Me to my self dost thou betray? says he:
Then to a Touch-stone turns the faithless Spy,
And in his Name records his Infamy.
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