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Before the royal palace of Thebes. Jocasta enters from the palace alone. Jocasta O Sun-god, you who cut your path in heaven's stars, mounted on a chariot inlaid with gold and whirling out your flame with swift horses, what an unfortunate beam you shed on Thebes, the day that Cadmus left Phoenicia's realm beside the sea and reached this land! He married at that time Harmonia, the daughter of Cypris, and begot Polydorus from whom they say Labdacus was born, and Laius from him. I am known as the daughter of Menoeceus, and Creon is my brother by the same mother. They call me Jocasta, for so my father named me, and I am married to Laius. Now when he was still childless after being married to me a long time in the palace, he went and questioned Phoebus, and asked for us both to have sons for the house. But the god said: “Lord of Thebes famous for horses, do not sow a furrow of children against the will of the gods; for if you beget a son, that child will kill you, and all your house s
Chorus From the Tyrian swell of the sea I came, a choice offering for Loxias from the island of Phoenicia, to be a slave to Phoebus in his halls, where he dwells under the snow-swept peaks of Parnassus; through the Ionian sea I sailed in the waves, over the unharvested plains, in the gusts of Zephyrus that ride from Sicily, sweetest music in the sky.
Chorus But now I find the impetuous god of war has come to battle before the walls, and is kindling a murderous blaze—may he not succeed!—for this city. For a friend's pain is shared, and if this land with its seven towers suffers any mischance, Phoenicia's realm will share it. Ah me! our blood is one; we are all children of Io, the horned maid; these sorrows I claim as m