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Chorus
[1001] Truly blooming health does not rest content within its due bounds; for disease ever presses close against it, its neighbor with a common wall.1 [1005] So human fortune, when holding onward in straight course strikes upon a hidden reef. And yet, if with a well-measured throw, caution heaves overboard [1010] a portion of the gathered wealth, the whole house, with woe overladen, does not founder nor engulf the hull.2Truly the generous gift from Zeus, [1015] rich and derived from yearly furrows, makes an end of the plague of famine.

1 Abounding health, ignoring its limitations, is separated from disease only by a slight dividing line. The suppressed thought is that remedies, if applied at the right time, may save the body.

2 The house of Agamemnon, full of calamity, is likened to an overloaded ship, which will founder if some part of its freight is not jettisoned. By confusion of the symbol and the thing signified, δόμος is boldly said to “sink its hull.”

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