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Helen
Here I am, once again coming back to the sanctuary of this tomb, after learning the welcome words of Theonoe, [530] who knows all things truly; she says my husband is alive and sees the light of day; he is roaming here and there on countless voyages, not without practice in wandering, and he shall come here when he finds an end to his suffering. [535] But she left one thing unsaid: if he will escape when he has come? And I refrained from asking that question clearly; I was so glad when she told me he was safe. She said that he was near this land somewhere, cast up, shipwrecked, with a few friends. [540] Oh, when will you come? How much I long for your arrival!

She catches sight of Menelaos
Ah! Who is this? I am not being ambushed by the plots of Proteus' impious son, am I? Shall I not, like a young racehorse or a worshipper of Bacchus, reach the tomb? There is something wild [545] about the looks of this man who is hunting me down.

Menelaos
You there! the one trying with fearful effort to reach the base of the tomb and the pillars of burnt sacrifice, stay where you are. Why do you flee? I am amazed and speechless at the sight of your body.

Helen
[550] Women, I am being ill-treated. This man is keeping me from the tomb, and he wants to take me and give me to the king, whose wooing I was seeking to avoid.

Menelaos
I am no thief, nor a servant of evil men.

Helen
And yet the clothes you are wearing are unsightly enough.

Menelaos
[555] Put fear aside and stop your rapid flight.

Helen
I do so, now that I have reached this spot.

Menelaos
Who are you? Whom do I see in you, lady?

Helen
But who are you? The same reason prompts us both.

Menelaos
I never saw a closer resemblance.

Helen
[560] O gods! For the recognizing of friends is a god.

<Menelaos
Are you a woman from Hellas, or a native of this land?>

Helen
From Hellas; but I want to learn your story too.

Menelaos
You seem to me very much like Helen, lady.

Helen
And you seem to me like Menelaos; I don't know what to say.

Menelaos
[565] Well, you have correctly recognized a most unfortunate man.

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hide References (2 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Oedipus Tyrannus, 863-910
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