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Messenger
[480] The commanders of the ships which still remained fled with a rush in disorder wherever the wind bore them. As for the survivors of the army, they perished in Boeotian territory, some, faint from thirst, beside a refreshing spring, while some of us, exhausted and panting, [485] made our way to the land of the Phocians, to Doris and the Melian gulf, where the Spercheus waters the plain with kindly stream. Coming from there, badly in need of food, we received welcome in the Achaean land and [490] the cities of the Thessalians. There it was that many perished of thirst and hunger, for we were oppressed by both. And we came to the Magnesian land and to the country of the Macedonians, to the ford of the Axius and Bolbe's reedy marsh, and to Mount Pangaeus, [495] in the Edonian land. But on that night the god roused winter before its time and froze the stream of sacred Strymon from shore to shore. Many a man who before that had held the gods in no esteem, implored them then in supplication, doing obeisance to earth and heaven. [500] But when our host had made an end of its fervent invocation of the gods, it ventured to pass across the ice-bound stream. And each of us who started on his way before the sun god dispersed his beams, found himself in safety, for the bright orb of the sun with its burning rays [505] heated the middle section and pierced it with its flames. One after another our men sank in, and fortunate indeed was he who perished soonest. The survivors, after making their way through Thrace with great hardship, [510] —and few they were indeed—escaped to the safety of the land of their homes; now the city of the Persians may make lament in regret for the beloved youth of the land. What I say is true, yet much remains untold of the ills launched by Heaven upon the Persians.Exit

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hide References (5 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (3):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Antigone, 1123
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Antigone, 182
    • W. W. How, J. Wells, A Commentary on Herodotus, 7.113
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