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3827

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1908

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GIFT OF




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lELL'S CLASSICAL TRANSLATIONS




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I GEORGE BELL AND SONS
PORTUGAL STREET
LINCOLN'S INN. LONDON




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BELUS MODERN TRANSLATIONS.

A NEW SERIES OF TRANSLATIONS FROM MODERN LAN-

GUAGES, WITH MEMOIRS, INTRODUCTIONS, Etc.

CROWN ^VO. PAPER COVERS, IS. EACH.

DANTE —Inferno. By Rev. H. F. Gary, M.A. With Notes.
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DANTE.-Paradiso. By Rev. H. F. Gary, M.A. With Notes.
■GOETHE.— Goetz von Berlichingen. By Sir Walter Scott.
GOETHE.— Egmont. By Anna Swanwick, LL.D.
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lui.) By G. Heron Wall.
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THE EUMENIDES OF yESCHYLUS





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TRANSLATED FROM A REVISED TEXT BY

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THE EUMENIDES




LONDON
GEORGE BELL & SONS

1908



mmm






THE EUMENIDES



183283



DRAMATIS PERSONS

The Pythian Prophetess.
Apollo.
Orestes.

Hermes (silent), conducting Orestes.
Ghost of Clytemnestra.
Chorus of the Furies.
Athena.

Jury of Areopagites.

Escort of Athenians, who conduct the Furies to their cavern in
procession, with a chorus.



OF THE

UNIVERSITY

califorS]^




THE EUMENIDES

{The Fttries)



Delphi, before the temple of Apollo.

Prophetess. First among the Gods I name with chiefest
honour in this prayer the first diviner Gaea (Earth) ; and
after her Themis (Law) ; for she, as a tradition telleth,
took her seat here second upon that which was her mother's
place of oracle ; and third in succession, with the good-
will and consent of Themis and with no force done to any,
another Titaness and child of Earth took seat here, Phoebe ;
she bestowed it as a birthday gift on Phoebus, and he
bears the name of Phoebe borrowed from her.^ He, coming
from the lake and ridge of Delos, landed at the havening lo
shores of Pallas, and came thence to this country and his
seat upon Parnassus. He was brought upon his way with
solemn worship by the sons of Hephaestus, the road-makers,
taming the wildness of the untamed land. And on his
coming he was most highly honoured by the people and by
Delphos the sovereign ruler of this country. Zeus caused

^ The purpose of this opening passage is to prepare for the har-
monious reconciliation at the close between the Powers of Earth and
Darkness and the Powers of Heaven and Light.

I I



2 THE EUMENIDES

his mind to be inspired with the diviner's art, and seated
him as the fourth prophet on this throne ; and Loxias is
the interpreter of Zeus his father.

These are the Gods I worship in my opening prayer. 20*
And Pallas of the Precinct hath honourable mention also ;
and I adore the Nymphs, that habit where is the Corycian
cavern, hollow, beloved of birds, the haunt of deities. —
Bromius hath possessed the region — I am not forgetful —
since the time when in his deity he led an army of the
Bacchanals, designing death for Pentheus like a hunted
hare. And with a call upon the springs of Pleistus, and
Poseidon's power, and on the Most High Zeus of Consum-
mation, I then take my seat as prophetess : — and may they
grant me that my entrance now may be more successful 30
far than any heretofore. And if there be any Hellenes
present, let them come in order of the lot, as is the usage ;
for I give responses as the God dictates.

{The Priestess enters the temple^ and presently comes
out again, half famti?ig.)

horror, horror, horror to relate and to behold, hath
sent me forth again from the house of Loxias, that I have
no strength left in me nor agile step ; my running is rather
with my hands than nimbleness of legs ; for an aged
woman in alarm is nought — nay, even as a child.

1 was on my way towards the laurelled cell, when on the
Navel-stone I saw a man polluted before heaven in the 40
session of a suppliant, his hands dripping with blood,
and holding a drawn sword and ^ high-grown branch
of olive, wreathed in humble fashion with the largest
wool — a silvery fleece, for on that point I will speak with
certainty.

And before this man there sleeps a wondrous troop of
women seated upon thrones — no, not women, Gorgons : —



THE EUMENIDES 3

no, nor yet Gorgons either can I compare them to : — I have
seen some in a picture before now carrying off the feast of 50
Phineus — but these are wingless, and black, and abominable
altogether. And they snore with blasts one cannot venture
near, and from their eyes there drips a loathsome rheum.
And their attire is such as is not fit to bring near statues
of the Gods, nor into homes of men. My eyes have never
seen the tribe these visitants belong to, and I know not
the land that can boast to breed this generation without
harm, and not repent her pains.

The sequel now must be his care who is the master 60
of this house, the mighty Loxias himself: he is both
Medicining-Seer and Portent-reader, and to those others
purifier of their houses. '

The interior of the temple. Orestes seated at the Centre-
st07ie^ the Furies surrounditig him, asleep; Hermes
in the background.

{E?iter Apollo.)

Apollo. I will not fail ! Through to the end I will be thy
protector close by thy side — aye, and though far removed,
— and will not show me gentle to thine enemies. So now
thou seest here these raveners overcome by sleep : there
lying sunken the abominable Maids, these hoary, ancient
Children, wdth whom never mateth God or man or any 70
beast 1 — nay, evil was the very cause of their creation, ^ for

^ The relative clause, by a studied carelessness, usurps the place of
the main sentence : Class. Rev. 1904, p. 242. There is another example
at V. 688.

^ Paradise Lost, i. 622 :

' A universe of death, which God by curse
Created evil, for evil only good,
Where all life dies, death lives.'



4 THE EUMENIDES

it is the evil darkness of the Pit that they inhabit under
the earth, things abhorred by human kind and by the Gods
of Heaven. Nevertheless thou must still fly and grow not
faint ; for they will chase thee right across the long main-
land, footing it ever over the trodden earth,^ and beyond
sea and island colonies. And let not thy spirit fail through
too much dwelling on the toil of it, but go unto the town
of Pallas, and take session, clasping her ancient image in 80
thine arms. And there, with judges of the case and speech
of soothing charm, we will discover means to free thee
wholly from this trouble ; for it was at my persuasion thou
didst take thy mother's life.

Orestes. Lord Apollo, thou well knowest what is
righteousness, and being perfect in that lore, add only to
be not forgetful of it ; thy strength to do good act is fully
competent.

Apollo. Remember, let not fear dismay thy spirit. — And
thou {to Hermes), my very brother, of one Father's blood,
H ermes, do thou protect him ; prove full well thy title 90
and be Guide, in shepherding this man, my suppliant. It
is a thing sacred in the eyes of Zeus, this sanctity of out-
laws, when sped forth upon their journey with auspicious
escort.^

[Apollo leaves the temple^ and Orestes starts upo7t his
journey ijt the charge of Hermes.

^ V. 76 fiifiSovT av^ atel TTjf ivXavoaTi^r] x^^v-

^ (T€0€i TOi Zeus T(^5' eKvSficov (reySas,
6p/x(i>jj.evov ^poTo7aiv evir6jj.Trcf Tvx'p-
Aeschylus might have written opixwixivoiv, but cre/Se: tJS' iKv6/xwv crefias
is an idiomatic way of saying aefiei Tovade iKv6/j.ous, as, for example,
V. 548 TOKiwv (Te$as eS irpoTioov, and v. 886 a\\' el fiev ayv6v iari
(Toi Tliidovs ffifias : so that toS' iKv6jxwv ericas opixwfxdvov is equivalent,
to ToucSe iKv6fxovs bpyLoofxevovs, while ^porolaiv here, as often, merely
means ' with men,' ' on earth.' The sentence has been sometimes
misinterpreted, as though Spixd/xevou meant ' sent to men, '



THE EUMENIDES 5

{Enter the Ghost ^Clytemnestra.)

Clyt. Oh, ah, sleep on, would ye ! and what good are ye
asleep ? While I, thus slighted in contempt by you, with
the other dead there for my killing the reproach ahiong the
perished is still fresh and vivid,i and I wander in disgrace
abroad : — I tell you, I am most grievously accused by
them — and yet, though used so shamefully by nearest kin, 100
there is not one Spirit that shows wrath on my account,
slaughtered as I was with hands of matricide ! — Behold the
wounds here with thine inward consciousness.-

Oh and yet plenty of my provisions have ye lapped
— wineless drink-offerings, sober soothing-draughts, and
banquets in the solemn night upon the burning brazier
would I sacrifice, a season shared with you by none in
Heaven. And all this I behold now trod like dirt beneath HO
your feet, and Jie is gone, escaped even as a fawn ; ay, and
that lightly from the very meshes hath he sprung, making
great mouths at you ! Give ear, because my plea is for my
very life ! Be conscious, O ye Goddesses of earth below !
'Tis in a dream now Clytemnestra calls to you.

i^A sound of mutter i?ig or meiving {fxv fxv Ar. jE^. id) is
heard from the Furies.)

1 Clytemnestra's passion makes her incoherent.

'^ V, 103 opa Se TrXrjyas rdaSe KapSia credev. Her wound was at
the throat, irphs Z^p7]v v. 595, eirw 5epas Eur. El. 12 1 9. After this line
the MS. gives :

€u5ouo'a 7ap


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