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The eccyclema turns and Agathon disappears.

Euripides
You look for all the world like a woman. But when you talk, take good care to give your voice a woman's tone.

Mnesilochus
falsetto
I'll try my best.

Euripides
Come, get yourself to the temple.

Mnesilochus
No, by Apollo, not unless [270] you swear to me ...

Euripides
What?

Mnesilochus
... that, if anything untoward happen to me, you will leave nothing undone to save me.

Euripides
Very well! I swear it by the Aether, the dwelling-place of the king of the gods.

Mnesilochus
Why not rather swear it by the sons of Hippocrates?

Euripides
Come, I swear it by all the gods, both great and small.

Mnesilochus
[275] Remember, it's the heart, and not the tongue, that has sworn; for the oaths of the tongue concern me but little.

Euripides
Hurry up! The signal for the meeting has just been raised on the Temple of Demeter. Farewell.

They both depart. The scene changes to the interior of the Thesmophorion, where the women who form the chorus are assembled. Mnesilochus enters, in his feminine attire, striving to act as womanly as possible, and giving his voice as female a pitch and lilt as he can; he pretends to be addressing his slave-girl.

Mnesilochus
Here, Thratta, follow me. [280] Look, Thratta, at the cloud of smoke that arises from all these lighted torches. Ah! beautiful Thesmophorae! grant me your favours, protect me, both within the temple and on my way back! Come, Thratta, put down the basket and take out [285] the cake, which I wish to offer to the two goddesses. Mighty divinity, oh, Demeter, and thou, Persephone, grant that I may be able to offer you many sacrifices; above all things, grant that I may not be recognized. Would that my well-holed daughter might marry a man [290] as rich as he is foolish and silly, so that she may have nothing to do but amuse herself. But where can a place be found for hearing well? Be off, Thratta, be off; slaves have no right to be present at this gathering.

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    • Raphael Kühner, Friedrich Blass, Ausführliche Grammatik der Griechischen Sprache, A. Vokale.
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