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Chorus
[875] Alas alas! lament; the son of Zeus, flower of your city, is being cut down. Woe to you, Hellas! that will cast from you your benefactor, and destroy him as he dances in the shrill frenzy of Madness.

[880] She is mounted on her chariot, the queen of sorrow and sighing, and is goading on her steeds, as if for outrage, the Gorgon child of Night, with a hundred hissing serpent-heads, Madness of the flashing eyes.

[885] Soon has the god changed his good fortune; soon will his children breathe their last, slain by a father's hand.

Amphitryon
within
Ah me! alas!

Chorus
O Zeus, unjust Vengeance, mad, relentless, will soon give your childless son [890] up to misery.

Amphitryon
within
Alas, O house!

Chorus
The dance begins without the cymbals' crash, with no glad waving of the wine-god's staff—

Amphitryon
within
Woe to these halls!

Chorus
Toward bloodshed, [895] and not to pour libations of Dionysus' grape.

Amphitryon
within
O children, make haste to fly!

Chorus
That is the chant of death, of death, to the music of pipes.

Ah, yes! he is hunting the children down. Never will Madness lead her revel rout in vain.

Amphitryon
within
[900] Ah misery!

Chorus
Ah me! how I lament that aged father, that mother too that bore his children in vain.

Look! look! [905] A tempest rocks the house; the roof is falling with it.

Heracles
within
Oh, oh! what are you doing, Pallas, child of Zeus, to the house? You are sending hell's confusion against the halls, as once you did on Enceladus.

A messenger enters from the palace.

Messenger
O white-haired old men!

Chorus
sung
Why this loud [910] address to me?

Messenger
It is dreadful within!

Chorus
sung
No need for me to call another prophet for that.

Messenger
The children are dead.

Chorus
sung
Alas!

Messenger
Ah weep! for here is cause for weeping.

Chorus
sung
A cruel murder, [915] cruel parents' hands!

Messenger
No words can utter more than we have suffered.

Chorus
sung
How came the ruin you reveal, the ruin that must be lamented, from a father to his children? Tell me how these heaven-sent woes [920] came rushing on the house; say how the children met their sad mischance.

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