The Iliad of Homer with a verse translation online

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'Apyeioi, rol Brj edev ive/ca TTOV\VV eft vyprjv
rj\v6ov ? TpoiTjv 7r6\jj,ov Opaavv o
7rap$a\er} fiev Trpcora fjuerd^pevov evpv Ka
TroiKiXr], avrdp eVt <TT6<f>dvr}v /C6(f)a\rj(f>t,v detpas 30

OJJKCITO xa\Ke{rjv, Sopv 8' i\ero %^l irately.
j3fj 8' ifjiev dvcTTYjcrwv ov aSeA,(eoi>, 09 fjieya iravTwv
'ApycLcov ijvacro-e, 6eb$ 8' w? Tiero 877/^0).
TOV 8' eu^)' ayLt^ tofJLOicn ndrj/jievov evrea /ca\d
vrjl Trdpa Trpv/JLvf}' TW 8' dcnrda'ios ^ever* \6cov. 35

TOP ?rpoT6/?09 Trpocreenre /3o^y dyaOo? Me^eXao?'
' Kopvacreai ; 17 ri^' eraipwv

Tpcoeo-cTLV 7rtcrK07rov ; aXXa /LtaX' atz

ou T/9 rot VTroa^rjTai, ro8e epyov,

a/jieveas <7K07na%/JLev oto? 7re\6tov 40

vvfcra 8t' dp/3po<rijv. /j,d\a rt?

TOV 8* d7rafj,eL/36iJL6vos 7rpoo-e<j)7) /cpelcov '

" Xpew ySouX^? eyLte #al ere, 8tor/)e^)69 w Mei/eXae,

Kep$d\erj$, r] r/9 Are epvcraeTai TjBe o-aaxrei,

'Ap7etou9 /tal r^a9, eVel A to 9 eTpdireTo <f)pijv.

'E/crop60t9 apa /j,d\\ov eirl (frpeva OfJX iepolcrW

ov yap 7TO) ISofjirjv, ovSe K\VOV avbrj

dv&p* eva Tocrad'&e /jLepfJiep* eir


aura)9, cure ^ea9 Ui09 ^)/Xo9 cure Beolo. 50

ILIAD X. 407

So up he stood, and round his breast he donned
His tunic, and beneath his shining feet
Bound his fair sandals, then he wrapped him round
In tawny skin, of lion bright-hued, large,
Mantling him to the feet, and took his spear.

And Menelaus likewise trembled sore,
Nor on his wakeful lids sat sleep ; lest harm
Should touch the Argive host, who for his sake
Across a water wide had come to Troy,
Stirring a venturous war. First his broad back
He covered with a spotted panther skin,
Then raised and set around his head a helm
Of brass, and in his broad hand took a spear.
And forth he went his brother to uprouse,
Who o'er all Argives reigned a mighty king
And by his people honoured as a god.
Him found he as he donned his armour fair
Around his shoulders by his vessel's stern :
Who gladly saw his brother come. Then first
Addressed him Menelaus good in fray :
"Why arming thus, mine honoured lord? Dost urge
Some comrade forth a spy on Troy? Nay much
I fear me none will undertake this work,
To spy our foemen, through ambrosial night
Alone advancing. Dauntless heart were his."

And sovereign Agamemnon made reply :
"Needs both for me and thee, O Zeus-born prince
My Menelaus, counsel shrewd, to guard
And save the Argives and their ships : for now
Changed is the mind of Zeus, who hath respect
To Hector's sacrifices more than ours.
For never saw I yet, nor heard it told,
That one man in one day such deeds of dread
Devised as Hector loved of Zeus hath wrought
Upon Achaia's sons wrought a mere man,
No darling son of goddess or of god.

408 IAIAAO2 K.

epya 8' epe^ ocra <f>r)iu aeXijcre/jLev 'Apyeioiaiv

BrjOd T6 Kal 8o\i)(0v' Tocra 'yap /ca/cd /-t^'crar' '

a\X* Wi vvv, A.iavra KOI 'IBopevrja Ka\eo-aov

pt/j,<f>a 6ea>v Trapd vfjas' eyco 8' eVl Necrropa Blov

el/JLi, KOI orpvveo) avcFrrj^evai, ai K eOekyaiv 55

\6elv e? (j)v\aK(0v lepov reXo? 778' eVtrecXa:.

jap Ke jj,d\icrTa inQolaTo' TO to yap vios
fXa/cecrcri, Kal 'ISo/xez/^o? oirawv
rolcrtv yap eTrerpajrofjiev ye yLtaXtcrra."

TOV S* TJyLtet/Ser* eTreira {Borjv ayaOos Mez>eXao9* 60

" Tree)? 70/3 pot, fjt,v6cp eTTiTeXXecii ijBe
avOt, fj,eva) /jLera TOLCTI,, SeBey/jLevo*; et? o
?;e ^eo) /Ltera o~' ayri?, CTT^ ev rot?

TW 8' ai/re irpoaeeiTre ava% dvSpwv '
" al6t, [Jieveiv, (JLTJ 7ra>9 d/3pOTdo/j,ev dX\ij\ouv 65

ep%ojj,eva)' TroXXal 7^ am cnparov eicri, /ce\evdoi.
(j>0eyyeo 8' 77 /^ez/ irjcrda, KOI eyprjyopdat dva)%Qi,
irarpbOev etc yeverjs ovo/j,da)v avbpa, e/cacrrov,

aXXa KOI avroi Trep r jroveu>^e6a. wSe TTOV a
Zeu? ejrl yiyvo/jLevoiaiv irj /ca/corrj-ra papeiav."

to? elirwv aVeVeyUTrez/ aSeX^ew, ev eVtretXa?,
avrdp o j3r) p Ikvai fjiera Neo-ropa Troipeva \awv.
TOV 8' evpev Trapd re /c\ialrj KOI vrjl fjie\alvrj
evpfj evi fj,a\a/cf)' Trapd 8' evrea 7roi/a'X' e/cetro, 75

atTTrl? /cat 8uo Sovpe (paeivrj re rpv<j)d\eia.
Trap Be foaTrjp Kelro Trai^atoXo?, y p 6 yepaid?
^wvvvff or e? 7r6\e/j,ov $>6i,crr]vopa 6wpr]cr<7OLro
\abv dycov, eVet ov /j,ev eVerpeTre yr)pai \vypw.

ILIAD X. 409

Deeds he hatli wrought full many, which I deem

Will work the Argives sorrow long and late,

Such woes against Achaians hath he planned.

But hie thee now, run swiftly by the ships,

And call me Ajax and Idomeneus.

To godlike Nestor I myself will go,

And bid him rise, to seek, if so he will,

The sacred band of guards, and give them charge.

For him they best will hear : his son it is

Who doth command the guards ; and with him joined

Meriones squire of Idomeneus :

For 'twas to them we gave that special trust."

Then answered Menelaus good in fray :
" How means thy word of bidding and command ?
Shall I remaining there with them await
Until thou come, or speed me back again
To thee, when I have given them careful charge?"

Answered him Agamemnon king of men :
" Remain thou there ; lest haply as we come
We miss each other : there be many paths
That cross the camp. Speak too, where'er thou goest,
And bid them wakeful be ; naming each man
By father and by kin, with titles due
To all ; nor bear thee with a haughty mind ;
But labour we ourselves. Zeus at our birth
Willed us, I ween, such heavy lot of woe."

So spake the king, and sent his brother forth
With careful charge. Himself then took his way
To seek out Nestor, shepherd of his folk.
Him by his tent and black-hulled ships he found
On a soft bed. Beside him lay his arms
Full richly wrought, a shield, two spears, a helm
Bright-glittering : and beside him lay withal
The supple belt that girt the greybeard's loins
When for the warrior-wasting fight he armed,
Leading his folk : for he to grievous age

4 io IAIAAO2 K.

6p6u>0e\s $ ap* 7T dy/ctovos, /cecf>a\,r)V eiraeipas, 80

y A.Tpet$r)v TrpoaeeiTre fcal e^epeeivero (jivOu*'

il r/9 ' OUT09 Kara vf]a<s dvd arparbv ep^eai oZo9

VVKTO, Si opfyvairjv, ore & evbovcriv /3porol a\\oi, ;

776 TLV ovprjcov Stf/JyLte^o? 77 TIV eraipwv ;

(j>0eyyeo, prj^ dtcewv TT e/M ep%eo' TLTTTC 8e ere ^peco;" 85

TOV $ Ttj/JLeiffer' eireira avat dv
" (w Necrro/) NTyXT/taS?;, fj,eya tcvSos '
yvobcrecu ^Krpet^v ' ' Kyafie^vova, rov irepl iravrcov
Zey? ever)K6 ITOVOLCTI Bi,afji7repe$, eh o K dvr/jir}
ev aTijOecrcri /Aevrj Kai poi $i\a yovvar opwpy. go

c58', eVet ov /JLOL eV o/jLfJLaai VIJ&V/JLOS V
i, d\\d fie\ei> TroXe/xo? /ecu tcrjbe '
p Aavacov irepi^ei^ia, ovBe poi rf

' o\a\viCTJ;/xat, KpaBlij 8e yu-ot efco
crT7)6ea)v e/cdpa)(7KeL, Tpo/jLeei ' UTTO fyaibifLa yvla. 95

* t Ti Spalveis, eirel ovSe o~e 7' VTTVOS itcdvei,

(f>v\arcas Kara^eiofiev, o(j)pa
rol fiev /ca/jLaro) dSTjKores ?;Se

drap (f>v\aKrjs eTrl 7rdy%v \aQwvrai.
' av$pe$ o-%e$ov eiarai,' ovBe TI VS/iev, 100

TOP 8' 77yLte//5er' eireira TepYjvios timora
" 'ATpetSr) /cvSiare, ava% dv&pwv 'Aydpefivov,
ov Orjv r/ E:ropt Trdvra vorjfiaTa /JLijTiera Zeus
efcre\eet, ocra TTOV vvv eXTrerat* aXXa pw o"co 105

Kal TrXei'ocrtz/, el Kev '

ILIAD X. 411

No whit would yield. Upon his elbow propped
Now lift he up his head : and Atreus' son
He thus addrest with words of questioning :
"And who art thou that comest thus alone
Throughout our ships and host, in darkest night,
When other mortals sleep? Is it some guard,
Or comrade that thou seekest? Speak, nor come
Thus voiceless on me. What may be thy need?"

Then answered Agamemnon king of men :
"O Nestor, Neleus' son, Achaia's boast,
Know me for Agamemnon Atreus' son ;
Whom above all in troubles Zeus hath plunged,
Troubles to last so long as in my breast
Be breath, and life be stirring in my limbs.
I wander thus because upon mine eyes
Sound sleep sits not, but I am much distraught
By cares of war and of Achaian woes.
Sorely I fear for this our Danaan host;
Nor stedfast stands my mind, but to and fro
I sway, and from my breast the heart leaps forth,
While my bright limbs beneath me trembling shake.
But if thou wilt do aught since thee, as me,
Sleep visits not come, go we to the guards,
To see, lest haply whelmed by toil and sleep
They lie, their watchful duty clean forgot.
For foes are camped full near, nor know we well
That e'en by night they may not dare the fray."

Whom Nestor answered then, Cerent's knight :
" Most glorious son of Atreus, king of men,
Great Agamemnon, not to all his thoughts
Will Hector find that Zeus the counsellor
Fulfilment brings, as now perchance he hopes.
But, as I think, with woes more numerous yet
He will be troubled, if Achilleus e'er

4 i2 IAIAA02 K.

e/c %6\ov dpya\eoLO fjueraa-rpe^rr) fyi\ov rjrop.

crol Se ud\' e^jro/ji eyco' Trorl ' av KOI eyelpo/jiev aXXou?,

rjpev TvSet&rjv Sovpt/cXvrov 778' 'OSvafja

778' Aiavra ra^yv KOI ^uXeo? dX/ci/iov vlov. no

a\V et rt? /cal roucrSe yLtero^o/ie^o? Ka\ecreiev,

avriOeov r A.lavra KOI 'I&ofjievfja,'

TWV yap vrjes ea&i e/cacrrdro), ovSe /iaX' eyyvs.

dX\.d (f>l\ov Trep eovra /cal al&oiov Mez^eXaoz^

veifcecra), el Trep uoi vefjieo-rjcreai,, 01)8' eTTiKevaw, 115

&J9 ei/Set, <rol 8' otw eTrerpe^ev TroveeaOai,.

vvv otpieXev /cara Trdvras dpicrTrjas iroveeaOai

\io~a 6 jJLevos' %petco ydp itcdverai ovicer

TOV S* avre Trpoa-eeiTre ava% dvSpcov ^
"u> yepov, d\\ore fiev ere /cal aiTidacrQai dvcoya'
7ro\\d/ci yap fieOiel re /cal ov/c eOe\ei Troveea-Oai,

OVT OKVCt) i/CCt)V OUT* d(j)pa8lrj(Ti VOOLO,

a\\' e/^e r' elo-opocov /cal e/J,rjv Trori^ey^

vvv S' eyLteo Trporepo? yLtaX' eTreypero /cal

rov uev eya) TTpoerj/ca Ka\^evai oO? av yLteraXXa?. 125

aXX' io/jbev' Kelvovs Se KL^rjo-oaeOa Trpo 7rv\do)v

ev <t)v\dfceo-cr ' i'va ydp crfyiv e7re(j)pa$ov riyepeOeo-Oai"

TOV S' rjfjbeijBer eTreura Teprjvios lirTTora Necrra)/)*
" OVTQ)S ov r/9 ol vefjLeo-rjaerat ovS' d7ri6rj(ret,
'Apyelcav, ore /cev TIV eTrorpvvrj /cal dva>yr}" 130

evbvve Trepl cmjOeao-i %iTaova,
' V7TO \i7rap ola iv ebijo-aro /ca\d TreSiXa,
d/j,<j)l S' dpa '%\aivav Trepovrjcraro fyoivucoecraav

e f (\ero & dX/ci/jiov 67^0?, d/ca^/JLevov oei %a\icq), 135

/3ij 8' ievai /card vrjas '

ILIAD X. 413

Shall turn his heart to quit his grievous wrath.
But now I readily will follow thee :
And rouse we others to our company,
Tydides, spear-famed chief, Odysseus too,
Ajax the fleet, and valiant Phyleus' son.
Nay, and 'twere not amiss if one should go
And summon these besides Ajax the great,
A peer of gods, and king Idomeneus ;
Whose ships are far to seek, not near at hand.
But Menelaus, tho' I hold him dear
And honoured, I will chide, e'en if thy wrath
Thereby I stir, nor will I hide my thought,
For that he sleeps and lets thee toil alone.
Now ought himself to toil and sue each chief,
For need no longer to be borne is ours."

Then answered Agamemnon king of men :
" O greybeard, times there are when I would bid
Thy blame be spoken ; for he oft is slack,
Nor wills to work; not yielding to base fear,
Nor from a witless mind, but looking still
To me, and waiting ever for my lead.
But now he even rose before myself,
And sought me first. And him have I sent forth
To call those very men thou askest for.
But go we : we shall find them with the guards
Before the gates ; for there I bade them meet."

Him answered Nestor then, Gerene's knight :
" So will no Argive chafe nor disobey,
Whom he may spur to action or command."

So spake he, and around his breast he donned
A tunic, and beneath his shining feet
Bound his fair sandals ; then about him clasped
A mantle crimson-hued, double, and long,
Thick with soft wool, and grasped a mighty spear
Tipped with keen brass, and went his way along
The vessels of Achaia's mail-clad men.

414 IAIAAO2 K.

TTpwrov eVeix' 'QSvo-fja Ail fjLtjrtv araXavTov
ef VTTVOV dveyeipe Teprjvio? ITTTTOTO, Necrrajp
<j)deyj;d/j,evo<;. rov 8' al\jra Trepl <peW? rj\v0' itoq,
etc 8' rf\6ev /cXfccrt?79, K.CLI cr^ea? ?rpo9 JJLV&OV eeLTrev' 140
" TifyB* ovrco Kara vfjas dva drparov OLOL aXacrde
vv/cra St' dfA/3{HHrt}V t on Brj XP eic ** T ' ov iteci',"

rov 8' rj^eifter eTreira Tepr]vio<$ ranrora Necrraj/j'
" Sioyeve? AaepridSr), 7ro\vjj,rj%av' 'QSvacrev,
fjij) ve/jieo-a' rolov yap a%o<? ftefflrjKCtf 'Ajffuovf. 145

ftrev, 6'^>/)a /^al aXXov Hyelpoftcv, ov T eireoucev
a? jBov\eveiv } rj
a^', o 8e


J3av 8' eVl TvSet&ijv Ato/irJSea. TOP Se icfyavov 1=0

e/CTOS aTTo K\uriifi crvv rev^ecnv' d/^(f)l 8' eralpot,
evBov, VTTO Kpaalv S' e^ov dcnrlBa^' ey^ea 8e afyiv

\dfji(f) w? re crTepOTrr) TraTpbs Aio?. avrdp o 7*

eiJS", VTTO 8' ea-TpcoTO puvov /3oo? dypav\oio, 155

avTap VTTO /cpdreo'(j)i, Tairj]^ TerdvvcrTo (f>aeLv6<>.

TOV irapcnds dveyeipe Teprjvws lirTrora Necrrcop,

Xaf 7ro8l KiVYjaas, wrpvve re, vel/ceae r OLVTTJV'

" eypeo, Tu8eo5 ute. rt iravvvyov VTTVOV awret? ;

t 0pc0cr/jia> 7re8toio 160

, 0X^705 8' ert ^a5/?09 IpvKei ; "
0)9 ^a,^', o 8' e'f VTTVOLO jj,d\a KpaiTrvas dvopovaev,
leal fJLiv (frcovrjcras 7rea Trrepoevra Trpoo-rjvBa'

cVcr i, yepcue' av fj,rjv TTOVOV ov TTOTG

ILIAD X. 415

Odysseus first, in counsel peer of Zeus,
Nestor Cerent's knight uproused from sleep
With summons loud. Full quickly to his soul
The voice found entrance ; and from out his tent
Advancing thus the chieftains he addrest :
"Why roam ye thus alone through ships and host
In night ambrosial? what your urgent need?"

Then answered him Nestor Cerent's knight :
" Odysseus, Zeus-born prince, Laertes' son,
Achaia's boast, thou man of many wiles,
Chafe not : for direst grief doth press our host.
But follow thou ; that we may likewise rouse
Some other, whomsoe'er it may beseem
Counsel to give, whether we fly or fight."

He spake. Odysseus, many-counselled man,
Entered his tent, and round his shoulders braced
A shield right richly wrought, and followed them.
Then Diomedes, Tydeus' son, they sought :
And him outside and separate from his tent
They found, all armed : round whom his comrades slept
Pillowed upon their shields ; with spears hard by,
Planted upon their butts upright, wherefrom
Blazed far a brazen sheen as of the flash
Of Father Zeus. Slept too the hero's self,
A wild bull's hide beneath his body strewn,
A bright-hued carpet stretched beneath his head.
Then by him Nestor stood Gerene's knight,
And stirring him with vigorous push of foot
Waked up, and urged him on, and roundly chid :
" Rouse thee, thou son of Tydeus ! Wherefore sleep'st
A night-long sleep? Hear'st not how sons of Troy
Upon the rising ground are camped, hard by
Our ships, and scant the space that holds them back?"

He spake : the other quick from sleep upsprang,
And thus in winged words addrest the king :
" A stubborn carlej greybeard, art thou ! Of toil

4i 6 IAIAA02 K.

ov vv KOI d\\oL eavi vecorepoi vies 'A^atcoV, 165

OL Kev eireira etcaarov eyetpeiav /3acri\rf(0v

TravTrj 7roi,^6fjLevoi, ', av 8' dfiYj^cLvos ecTCTi, yepaie"

TOV 8' avre irpocreeLire Teprjvios iTTTrora NeVro)/)'
" val Srj ravrd ye irdvra, re/co?, Kara fjiolpav
elalv [lev IJLOI TratSe? d^v paves, elal Se Xaot
KOI TToXee?, TOOV Kev Tt? eTTOL^o/jLevos Ka\ecrei,ev.
d\\d fjid\a fj,eyd\r) %peta) /
vvv yap S/} iravTecraiv eVt vpov f i<TTa,TCU
r) fj,d\a \vypo<$ o\e9pos 'A^atot? ije ffioovai.

' WL vvv AXavra ra^vv KOI OuXeo? vlov 175

(en) yap ZGGI rewrepo?), et p eXea/pet?."

to? ^>a^\ o S' ayu^>' wfJLOiaiv eeVcraro Sep/ia \eovros
aWcovos fieyaXoio iro^rjveKes, eiXero 8' ey%o<$.
/3f] S' levat, TOI)? 8' eV^ez^ dvao-T^aas dyev ijpcos.

01 S' ore 8/} $>v\dKe(rcnv ev dypopevoia-iv efJU^Qev, 180
oi)Se yu-e^ eySoz/ra? (f)v\d/ca)V tjyrjropas evpov,
aX,X* eyprjyoprl avv rev%e(riv el'aro Trdvres.
to? 8e Kvve<$ irepl /j,r}\a Svo-wpTjcrcoaiv ev av\rj
Orjpos d/covo-avTes Kparepofypovos, 09 re /ea#' v\rjv
ep%r)Tat, Si opeorfyc TTO\VS 8' opvpaybos eir auraJ 185
dvSpwv tjBe KVVWV, diro re GIGIV VTTVOS o\w\ev'
0)9 TV vijSvfjios VTTVOS djTO fi\<f)dpoiiv oXcoXet
vv/cra <j>v\aa-(ToiJLevoLcri Karcijv' TreBlovSe yap alei
rerpd(f)aO\ OTTTTOT eVl T^pwwv dtouev lovrcov.
TO 1)9 8' 6 yepcov yrjOrfae I8a>v, Odpcrvve re /uv6a), 190

Kai <r<f>ea$ ^>a)^7}cra9 eirea Trrepoevra irpocrrjvBa'
" ovTG) vvv, <f)i\a refcva. ^vXdo-aere' fjLr)$e TLV v
alpeiTco, pr} ^appa yevco/jieOa

ILIAD X. 417

Thou know'st no end. Are then none other found,
Achaia's sons, younger in years, to go
Round all our camp and rouse each sleeping king?
Greybeard, thou art indeed a restless wight."

And answer made Nestor Gerend's knight :
"Yea, all thou say'st, my friend, is fitly said.
Sons have I blameless, people have I too
Full numerous ; and of these some one might well
Bear round the summons. But it is a need
Exceeding great constrains Achaia's sons.
For on a razor's edge stands now the fate
Of all our host, destruction dire or life.
But hie thee now, Ajax the fleet arouse,
And Phyleus' son : for thou, the younger man,
May'st do my errand, if thou pitiest me."

He spake : the other wrapped his shoulders round
With skin of lion tawny-hued and large,
Mantling him to the feet, and took his spear.
Then went he on his way, and from their place
The hero roused and led the chieftains twain.

And when they came among the gathered guards,
Their captains found they not asleep, but all
Were sitting ready armed in wakeful wise.
And as the dogs around a flock in fold
Keep painful watch when they have heard the roar
Of dauntless beast, who through the mountain wood
Approaches by large rout of men and dogs
Full sorely pressed and all their sleep is gone :
So from the eyelids of the guards sweet sleep
Was gone, as through the evil night they watched.
For ever and anon toward the plain
They turned them as they heard the Trojans move.
And these the greybeard joyed to see, and spake
To cheer them, and in winged words addrest :
" Watch on, dear children, thus : let none by sleep
Be holden j lest we cause our foemen joy."
G. H. 27

4 i 8 IAIAAO2 K.

rd(f>poto cHe<Jcri>TO* TOI
/9acrtX^9, CXTOI, /ce/cXrjaro ^ov\r)V.
T0*9 & dfjia Mrjpi6v7)$ /cal Ne<rropo9 a7Xao9 vlos
avrol yap /cd\eov ^vfJi^ridao'daL.
& e/cSia/Bavres 6pv/crr)v ebpiocovro
ev KaOapw, 061 or) vefcvcov Siecfralvero ^wpos

oOev avTis aTrerpaTrer* 6'y8piyuo9 r/ E/cra)p
*A/py/ov9, ore 8?) Trepl w^ e'^
evda /caQe^ofjievoi, eire d\\^\oio~L

oe {JLvOwv tfpxe Teprjvios tTTTrora Ne<7T6>p*
i, ov/c av Brj rt9 dvrjp ireiriOo^ ecS avrou
^jjirjevTi p,erd Tpaa
e\6elv ; ei TLVOL TTOV Srjicov eXoi
77 TIVGL TTOV /cal (frr/jjiiv eVl Tpa)e<7crt irvQoiTo^
dao~a re /jiT]Ti6c0o~i /Jiera o~(f)io~i,i', 77 fjbefjLaaorLV
avOi jjuevew Trapd vr]vo~lv diroTrpodev, r)e 7ro\ivSe
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o"uv re Su' epyo/jievct) /cal re trpo o TOV evorjeev

ILIAD X. 419

He spake, and swiftly sped across the trench :
And with him followed close those Argive kings
Who had been called to council. With them went
Meriones and Nestor's beaming son,
Whom now themselves did call their rede to share.
But when the deep-dug trench was crossed and cleared,
In a void place they seated them, where shone
An open plot amid the thick-strewn dead.
There was it that impetuous Hector stayed
His charge and turned him back from dealing death
On Argives, when the veil of night came down.
There sate they, and in turn declared their words :
Of whom spake first Nestor Gerene's knight :
" O friends, will no man on his daring heart
Reliant to the high-souled Trojans' camp
Go forth ? if haply he may take some foe
Outlying on the verge, or learn some news
Among the Trojans, what their counsel is,
Whether they mean here by our ships to bide
Abroad, or to their city back again
To turn, Achaia's armies once repelled.
All this a man might learn, and come again
To us unscathed. Great would his glory be
Beneath wide heaven o'er all the tribes of men.
And good shall be his guerdon. For the chiefs
Who rule our ships shall give him, each and all,
A black ewe, mother with a sucking lamb,
A prize that nought can rival : and a place
At feast and banquet he shall alway claim."

He spake : but they were mute and silent all.
Then out spake Diomedes good in fray :
"Nestor, my heart and manly spirit prompts
Our Trojan foemen's camp, who lie so near,
To enter. But one comrade could I take,
More cheer were mine, and greater boldness too.
When two together go, what's best to do


420 IAIAAO2 K.

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ILIAD X. 421

One sees before the other : but alone
Tho' one may see, yet may his mind to see
Be slower, and his single counsel weak."

He spake : and many now were fain to go
With Diomedes. Fain the Ajax pair,
Henchmen of Ares ; fain Meriones ;
Full fain the son of Nestor ; fain withal
The spear-famed Menelaus, Atreus' son.
Fain was Odysseus, much-enduring man,
The Trojan throng to enter, for his heart
Within his breast was ever venturous.
And then spake Agamemnon king of men :
"O Diomedes, to my soul most dear,
Thou son of Tydeus, whomsoe'er thou wilt,
That comrade choose, of those whom here thou seest
The best, since many to the service press.
Nor for a scruple leave the better man
And take the worse, from reverence of rank,
Looking to higher birth, or kinglier sway."

He spake, afraid for Menelaus' sake,
That hero yellow-haired. Then 'mid them all
Again spake Diomedes, good in fray :
"If now ye bid myself my comrade choose,
How could I pass divine Odysseus by?
Whose ready heart and manly spirit shines
In every toil preeminent : whom withal
Pallas Athend loves. If he be there,
E'en out of burning fire we both may come,
Since all unrivalled is his cunning wit."

To whom replied the godlike patient chief:
" Tydides, praise me not o'er much, nor blame :
For this whereof thou speak'st these Argives know.
But go we. Night is waning, dawn is near :
The stars are forward far : of night are past
Two parts and more, a third alone remains."

So spake the twain : and then in armour dread

422 IAIAAO2 K.

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Online LibraryHomerThe Iliad of Homer with a verse translation → online text (page 25 of 32)