previous next

Chorus Leader
It is pardonable, for a man suffering from evils too heavy to bear, to rid himself of a wretched existence.

Agamemnon and his retinue enter.

Hearing a cry I have come here; for Echo, [1110] child of the mountain-rock, has sent her voice loud-ringing through the army, causing a tumult. If we had not known that Troy's towers were levelled by the might of Hellas, this uproar would have caused no slight terror.

Best of friends! for by your voice I know you, [1115] Agamemnon; do you see my piteous state?

What! hapless Polymestor, who has stricken you? who has blinded your eyes, staining the pupils with blood? who has slain these children? whoever he was, fierce must have been his wrath against you and your children.

[1120] Hecuba, helped by the captive women, has destroyed me—not destroyed, far worse than that.

addressing Hecuba
What do you say? Was it you that did this deed, as he says? You, Hecuba, that have ventured on this inconceivable daring?

Ha! what is that? is she somewhere near? [1125] Show me, tell me where, that I may grip her in my hands and rend her limb from limb, bespattering her with gore.

You creature, what are you about?

By the gods I entreat you, let me vent on her the fury of my arm.

Hold! banish that savage spirit from your heart [1130] and plead your cause, so that after hearing you and her in turn I may fairly decide what reason there is for your present sufferings.


I will tell my tale. There was a son of Priam, Polydorus, the youngest, a child by Hecuba, whom his father Priam sent to me from Troy to bring up in my halls, [1135] suspecting no doubt the fall of Troy. I killed him; but hear my reason for killing him, how cleverly and wisely I had planned. My fear was that if that child were left to be your enemy, he would repeople Troy and settle it afresh; [1140] and the Achaeans, knowing that a son of Priam survived, might bring another expedition against the Phrygian land, and then harry and lay waste these plains of Thrace, for the neighbours of Troy to experience the very troubles we were lately suffering, O king.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Troy (Turkey) (5)
Thrace (Greece) (1)
Greece (Greece) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (1 total)
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: