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Then the horseman, Nestor of Gerenia, answered him: “My friend, since thou hast recalled to my mind the sorrow which we endured in that land, we sons of the Achaeans, unrestrained in daring,— [105] all that we endured on shipboard, as we roamed after booty over the misty deep whithersoever Achilles led; and all our fightings around the great city of king Priam;—lo, there all our best were slain. There lies warlike Aias, there Achilles, [110] there Patroclus, the peer of the gods in counsel; and there my own dear son, strong alike and peerless, Antilochus, pre-eminent in speed of foot and as a warrior. Aye, and many other ills we suffered besides these; who of mortal men could tell them all? [115] Nay, if for five years' space or six years' space thou wert to abide here, and ask of all the woes which the goodly Achaeans endured there, thou wouldest grow weary ere the end and get thee back to thy native land. For nine years' space were we busied plotting their ruin with all manner of wiles; and hardly did the son of Cronos bring it to pass. [120] There no man ventured to vie with him in counsel, since goodly Odysseus far excelled in all manner of wiles,—thy father, if indeed thou art his son. Amazement holds me as I look on thee, for verily thy speech is like his; nor would one think [125] that a younger man would speak so like him. Now all the time that we were there goodly Odysseus and I never spoke at variance either in the assembly or in the council, but being of one mind advised the Argives with wisdom and shrewd counsel how all might be for the best. [130] But when we had sacked the lofty city of Priam, and had gone away in our ships, and a god had scattered the Achaeans, then, even then, Zeus planned in his heart a woeful return for the Argives, for in no wise prudent or just were all. Wherefore many of them met an evil fate [135] through the fell wrath of the flashing-eyed goddess, the daughter of the mighty sire, for she caused strife between the two sons of Atreus. Now these two called to an assembly all the Achaeans, recklessly and in no due order, at set of sun—and they came heavy with wine, the sons of the Achaeans,— [140] and they spoke their word, and told wherefore they had gathered the host together.

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