[Editor: A poem published in The Sydney Herald, 4 October 1832.]
[Her Dark Blue Eyes]
For the Sydney Herald,
—— “Ne crede colori.”
Her dark blue eyes, now pouring forth
A lustre on the air,
Pierc’d as the meteor’s glaring fire,
The tresses of her hair;
And on her neck, there gracefully
The scarf of crimson hung,
Which fondly on her glowing cheek,
A heav’nly radiance flung.
And when she sung the tender strain,
Responsive to the lyre,
Her raptur’d features quickly caught
The Poet’s pleasing fire.
I heard the song, and rapt from earth,
Enchanted felt the sound,
Which chain’d me, as at Orpheus’ harp,
On some celestial ground.
I gazed on her, and thought I saw
One of a brighter sphere,
’Till from her hands she threw the lyre,
And vacant left the ear;
I look’d again, but who was there?
An Angel? no — a Belle!
Born for a day to grace the Court,
To-morrow, who shall tell?
The Sydney Herald (Sydney, NSW), 4 October 1832, page 4
belle = a very beautiful and charming female, especially referring to the most beautiful and charming woman in a crowd or group (e.g. as used in the phrase “the belle of the ball”)
ne crede colori = (Latin) from a line by Virgil (Publius Vergilius Maro, 70 BC – 19 BC), from his Eclogues (Ecloga, Book II, line 17), translated variously as: “don’t put too much credence in one’s colours”, “don’t rely too much on your beauty”, “trust not too much to a complexion”, and “trust not too much in thy beauty”
See: P. Vergili Maronis Ecloga Secvnda, Latin Library (accessed 22 December 2015)
John Martyn, Publii Virgilii Maronis Bucolicorum Eclogae Decem.: The Bucolicks of Virgil”, London: R. Reily, 1749, page 41 [“trust not too much in thy beauty”]
“The Works of Virgil: Translated into English Prose, Vol. 1, fourth edition, London: Joseph Davidson, 1763, page 7 [“trust not too much to a Complexion”]
“The Works of Virgil Translated into English Prose”, vol. I, new edition, London: George B. Whittaker et al, 1826, page 7 [“trust not too much to a complexion”]
Orpheus = in Greek mythology, Orpheus was a great musician, whose music could charm any living creature
Virg. = an abbreviation of Virgil (Publius Vergilius Maro, 70 BC – 19 BC), the Roman poet (an alternative spelling of “Virgil” is “Vergil”)