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Medea
It shall be so. But if you were to give me a promise of this, I would have all I could wish from you.

Aegeus
Do you not trust me? What is your difficulty?

Medea
I trust you. But Pelias' house is hostile to me, [735] and Creon as well. If you are bound by an oath, you will not give me up to them when they come to take me out of the country. But if you have made an agreement in mere words and have not sworn by the gods, you might become their friend and comply with diplomatic requests. For I am weak, [740] while they have wealth and royal power.

Aegeus
You have shown much prudence in your speech. Well, if you like, I do not object to doing this. Not only is this plan safer for me, since I can show your enemies some pretext, [745] but your own case is more secure. Name the gods I must swear by.

Medea
Swear by the plain of Earth, by Helios, my grandfather, and by the whole race of gods all together.

Aegeus
To do what or to refrain from what? You must say.

Medea
That you yourself will never banish me from your land [750] and that, if any of my enemies ask to take me, you will not willingly give me up as long as you live.

Aegeus
I swear by Earth, by the holy light of Helios, and by all the gods that I will do as I have heard from your lips.

Medea
That is good. But what punishment do you call down on yourself if you do not abide by your oath?

Aegeus
[755] The punishment that befalls the impious among mortals.

Medea
Go your way with joy. For all is well, and I shall come to your city as soon as I can, when I have accomplished what I intend and gained what I wish.Exit Aegeus by Eisodos A.

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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Oedipus at Colonus, 1729
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