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Then Eurymachus, son of Polybus, answered him, and said: “Old man, up now, get thee home and prophesy to thy children, lest haply in days to come they suffer ill. [180] In this matter I am better far than thou to prophesy. Many birds there are that fare to and fro under the rays of the sun, and not all are fateful. As for Odysseus, he has perished far away, as I would that thou hadst likewise perished with him. Then wouldst thou not prate so much in thy reading of signs, [185] or be urging Telemachus on in his wrath, hoping for some gift for thy house, if haply he shall give it. But I will speak out to thee, and this word shall verily be brought to pass. If thou, wise in the wisdom of old, shalt beguile with thy talk a younger man, and set him on to be wroth, [190] for him in the first place it shall be the more grievous, and he will in no case be able to do aught because of these men here, and on thee, old man, will we lay a fine which it will grieve thy soul to pay, and bitter shall be thy sorrow. And to Telemachus I myself, here among all, will offer this counsel. [195] His mother let him bid to go back to the house of her father, and they will prepare a wedding feast and make ready the gifts full many,—aye, all that should follow after a well-loved daughter. For ere that, methinks, the sons of the Achaeans will not cease from their grievous wooing, since in any case we fear no man,— [200] no, not Telemachus for all his many words,—nor do we reck of any soothsaying which thou, old man, mayest declare; it will fail of fulfillment, and thou shalt be hated the more. Aye, and his possessions shall be devoured in evil wise, nor shall requital ever be made, so long as she shall put off the Achaeans [205] in the matter of her marriage. And we on our part waiting here day after day are rivals by reason of her excellence, and go not after other women, whom each one might fitly wed.” Then wise Telemachus answered him: “Eurymachus and all ye other lordly wooers, [210] in this matter I entreat you no longer nor speak thereof, for now the gods know it, and all the Achaeans. But come, give me a swift ship and twenty comrades who will accomplish my journey for me to and fro. For I shall go to Sparta and to sandy Pylos [215] to seek tidings of the return of my father that has long been gone, if haply any mortal man may tell me, or I may hear a voice from Zeus, which oftenest brings tidings to men. [220] If so be I shall hear that my father is alive and coming home, then verily, though I am sore afflicted, I could endure for yet a year. But if I shall hear that he is dead and gone, then I will return to my dear native land and heap up a mound for him, and over it pay funeral rites, full many, as is due, and give my mother to a husband.”

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