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Enter Odysseus from the cave.

[375] O Zeus, what am I to say when I have seen in the cave terrible things, incredible things such as one meets only in stories, not in the deeds of mortals?

What is it, Odysseus? Can it really be that the godless Cyclops has feasted on your dear companions?

Yes. He spotted and weighed in his hands the two [380] who had the fattest flesh.

Poor man, how came your comrades to suffer this fate?


When we entered this rocky hall, he first made the fire blaze up, heaping onto the hearth thick logs from a mighty oak, [385] enough to load three wagons, and he set the bronze kettle to boil on the fire. Then near the blaze he spread out a bed of fir branches upon the ground. After he had milked the heifers, [390] he filled to the brim a great mixing-bowl, holding about ninety gallons, with white milk, and he set next to it a cup of ivy-wood four-and-a-half feet from rim to rim and what looked like a good six feet to the bottom; then spits made of buck-thorn wood, their ends burnt in the fire but the rest of them scraped with a scythe, [395] <
*>.1 When that vile and murderous cook had everything ready, he snatched up two of my companions. He cut the throat of the first over the cauldron with a sweep of the arm and drained him of blood, [400] the second he seized by the tendon at the end of his foot, struck him against the sharp edge of a rock, and dashed out his brains. Then butchering them with a fierce blade he roasted their fleshy parts in the fire and put their arms and legs in the cauldron to boil. [405] And I stood near the Cyclops in my wretchedness, tears streaming from my eyes, and helped him at his work. The others cowered like birds in the recesses of the cave, their faces pale and bloodless.

1 In addition to the unintelligible 395, there is probably also a lacuna here.

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