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Chorus Leader
Oh, oh! My friends, did you hear a noise—or did an empty notion come to me?—like the underground rumbling from Zeus? Look, the breeze rises, bringing with it a sign. [750] Mistress, Electra, leave the house!

Electra
Rushing out
My friends, what is it? How do we stand in the contest?

Leader
I only know this; I hear a wailing that means bloodshed.

Electra
I heard it also, far off, but still heard.

Leader
Yes, the sound is coming a long way, but it is clear.

Electra
[755] The groan was of an Argive; was it from my friends?

Leader
I don't know; for the whole tune of the shout is confused.

Electra
You are calling out to me my death; why do I delay?

Leader
Hold back, to learn your fortune clearly.

Electra
No, no; we are vanquished; where are the messengers?

Leader
[760] They will come; it is no trivial matter to kill a king.

A Messenger enters in haste

Messenger
O victorious maidens of Mycenae, I report to all his friends that Orestes has conquered, and Aegisthus, the murderer of Agamemnon, lies on the ground; but we must offer prayers to the gods.

Electra
[765] Who are you? How trustworthy is your announcement?

Messenger
Don't you know your brother's servant when you look at me?

Electra
O best of friends! I could not recognize your face out of fear; but now I know you well. What are you saying? Is my father's hated murderer dead?

Messenger
[770] He is dead; I am telling you twice what you certainly want to hear.

Electra
O gods, and all-seeing justice, at last you have come. In what way and by what form of death did he kill Thyestes' son? I would like to learn.

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hide References (3 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Ajax, 502
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