Hermes of the nether world, you who guard the powers that are your father's, [Note] prove yourself my savior and ally, I entreat you, now that I have come to this land and returned from exile. On this mounded grave I cry out to my father to hearken, to hear me
[Look, I bring] a lock to Inachus [Note]
For I was not present, father, to lament your death, nor did I stretch forth my hand to bear your corpse.
What is this I see? 10 What is this throng of women that moves in state, marked by their sable cloaks? To what calamity should I set this down? Is it some new sorrow that befalls our house? Or am I right to suppose that for my father's sake they bear these libations to appease the powers below? 15 It can only be for this cause: for indeed I think my own sister Electra is approaching, distinguished by her bitter grief. Oh grant me, Zeus, to avenge my father's death, and may you be my willing ally!
Pylades, let us stand apart, 20 that I may
know clearly what this band of suppliant women intends.Exit Orestes and Pylades. Enter Electra with women carrying libations.
Aeschylus, Libation Bearers (English) (XML Header) [genre: poetry; drama; tragedy] [word count] [Aesch. Cho.].