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Dear luckless me, what have I done? [240] Where have I wandered from the path of good sense? I was mad, I fell by the stroke of some divinity. Oh, how unhappy I am. Nurse, cover my head up again. For I am ashamed of my words. [245] Go on, cover it: the tears stream down from my eyes and my gaze is turned to shame. For to be right in my mind is grievous pain, while this madness is an ill thing. Best is to perish in unconsciousness.The Nurse veils Phaedra's head.

[250] I cover your head. But when will my body be covered in death? My long life has taught me many lessons: mortals should not mix the cup of their affection to one another too strong, [255] and it should not sink to their very marrow, but the affection that binds their hearts should be easy to loosen, easy either to thrust from them or to bind tightly. It is a grievous burden that one soul should be in travail over two the way I [260] grieve for her. Men say that a way of life too unswerving leads more to a fall than to satisfaction and is more hurtful to health. That is why I have much less praise for excess [265] than for moderation. The wise will bear me out.

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