Thrice from the ground she leap’d, was seen to wield Her brandish’d lance, and shake her horrid shield.
Penthisilea there, with haughty grace, Leads to the wars an Amazonian race: In their right hands a pointed dart they wield; The left, for ward, sustains the lunar shield.
Arm’d once again, my glitt’ring sword I wield, While th’ other hand sustains my weighty shield, And forth I rush to seek th’ abandon’d field.
How great they look! how vig’rously they wield Their weighty lances, and sustain the shield!
Gold are their vests; long Alpine spears they wield, And their left arm sustains a length of shield.
With these he long sustain’d th’ Herculean arm; And these I wielded while my blood was warm, This languish’d frame while better spirits fed, Ere age unstrung my nerves, or time o’ersnow’d my head.
Then haughty Dares in the lists appears; Stalking he strides, his head erected bears: His nervous arms the weighty gauntlet wield, And loud applauses echo thro’ the field.
He said; and, rising at the word, he threw Two pond’rous gauntlets down in open view; Gauntlets which Eryx wont in fight to wield, And sheathe his hands with in the listed field.
And these (as was the Teuton use of old) Wield brazen swords, and brazen bucklers hold; Sling weighty stones, when from afar they fight; Their casques are cork, a covering thick and light.
The rear so press’d the front, they could not wield Their angry weapons, to dispute the field.
What use of weapons which you dare not wield?
But if the challenger these arms refuse, And cannot wield their weight, or dare not use; If great Aeneas and Acestes join In his request, these gauntlets I resign; Let us with equal arms perform the fight, And let him leave to fear, since I resign my right.
Adorn’d with Dardan arms, the phantom bore His head aloft; a plumy crest he wore; This hand appear’d a shining sword to wield, And that sustain’d an imitated shield.
Thou, when the rosy morn restores the light, First arm thy soldiers for th’ ensuing fight: Thyself the fated sword of Vulcan wield, And bear aloft th’ impenetrable shield.
With labor spent, no longer can he wield The heavy fanchion, or sustain the shield, O’erwhelm’d with darts, which from afar they fling: The weapons round his hollow temples ring; His golden helm gives way, with stony blows Batter’d, and flat, and beaten to his brows.
…With those who plow Saturnia’s Gabine land; Besides the succor which cold Anien yields, The rocks of Hernicus, and dewy fields, Anagnia fat, and Father AmaseneA num’rous rout, but all of naked men: Nor arms they wear, nor swords and bucklers wield, Nor drive the chariot thro’ the dusty field, But whirl from leathern slings huge balls of lead, And spoils of yellow wolves adorn their head; The left foot naked, when they march to fight, But in a bull’s raw hide they sheathe the right.
…Aegaeon, when with heav’n he strove, Stood opposite in arms to mighty Jove; Mov’d all his hundred hands, provok’d the war, Defied the forky lightning from afar; At fifty mouths his flaming breath expires, And flash for flash returns, and fires for fires; In his right hand as many swords he wields, And takes the thunder on as many shields: With strength like his, the Trojan hero stood; And soon the fields with falling corps were strow’d, When once his fauchion found the taste of blood.
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She wields little authority, but much influence in the company.