Aeschylus, Eumenides (English) (XML Header) [genre: poetry; drama; tragedy] [word count] [Aesch. Eum.].
<<Aesch. Eum. 174 Aesch. Eum. 178 (Greek) >>Aesch. Eum. 213

178

Enters from the inner sanctuary.

Apollo Out, I order you! Go away from this house at once, leave my prophetic sanctuary, 180so that you may not be struck by a winged glistening snake [Note] shot forth from a golden bow-string, and painfully release black foam, vomiting the clots of blood you have drained from mortals. 185It is not right for you to approach this house; no, your place is where the punishments are beheading, gouging out of eyes, cutting of throats, and where young men's virility is ruined by destruction of seed; where there is mutilation and stoning, and where those who are impaled beneath their spine moan long and piteously. 190Do you hear what sort of feast is your delight? You are detested by the gods for it. The whole fashion of your form sets it forth. Creatures like you should live in the den of a blood-drinking lion, and not inflict pollution on all near you in this oracular shrine. 195Be gone, you goats without a herdsman! No god loves such a flock.

Chorus Lord Apollo, hear our reply in turn. You yourself are not partially guilty of this deed; you alone have done it all, and are wholly guilty. 200

Apollo What do you mean? Draw out the length of your speech this much.

Chorus Through your oracle, you directed the stranger to kill his mother.

Apollo Through my oracle, I directed him to exact vengeance for his father. What of it?

Chorus And then you agreed to take the fresh blood on yourself.

Apollo And I ordered him to turn for expiation to this house. 205

Chorus And do you then rebuke us, the ones who escorted him here?

Apollo Yes, for you are not fit to approach this house.

Chorus But this has been assigned to us—

Apollo What is this office of yours? Boast of your fine privilege!

Chorus We drive matricides from their homes. 210

Apollo But what about a wife who kills her husband?

Chorus That would not be murder of a relative by blood.



Aeschylus, Eumenides (English) (XML Header) [genre: poetry; drama; tragedy] [word count] [Aesch. Eum.].
<<Aesch. Eum. 174 Aesch. Eum. 178 (Greek) >>Aesch. Eum. 213

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