And they came to the hollow land of Lacedaemon
with its many ravines, and drove to the palace of glorious Menelaus. Him they found giving a marriage feast to his many kinsfolk for his noble son and daughter within his house.
His daughter he was sending to the son of Achilles, breaker of the ranks of men, for in the land of Troy
he first had promised and pledged that he would give her, and now the gods were bringing their marriage to pass. Her then he was sending forth with horses and chariots to go her way to the glorious city of the Myrmidons, over whom her lord was king;
but for his son he was bringing to his home from Sparta
the daughter of Alector, even for the stalwart Megapenthes, who was his son well-beloved,1
born of a slave woman; for to Helen the gods vouchsafed issue no more after that she had at the first borne her lovely child, Hermione, who had the beauty of golden Aphrodite.
So they were feasting in the great high-roofed hall, the neighbors and kinsfolk of glorious Menelaus, and making merry; and among them a divine minstrel was singing to the lyre, and two tumblers whirled up and down through the midst of them, as he began his song.
Then the two, the prince Telemachus and the glorious son of Nestor, halted at the gateway of the palace, they and their two horses. And the lord Eteoneus came forth and saw them, the busy squire of glorious Menelaus; and he went through the hall to bear the tidings to the shepherd of the people.
So he came near and spoke to him winged words:
“Here are two strangers, Menelaus, fostered of Zeus, two men that are like the seed of great Zeus. But tell me, shall we unyoke for them their swift horses, or send them on their way to some other host, who will give them entertainment?”
Then, stirred to sore displeasure, fair-haired Menelaus spoke to him: “Aforetime thou was not wont to be a fool, Eteoneus, son of Boethous, but now like a child thou talkest folly. Surely we two ate full often hospitable cheer of other men, ere we came hither in the hope that Zeus
would hereafter grant us respite from sorrow. Nay, unyoke the strangers' horses, and lead the men forward into the house, that they may feast.”
So he spoke, and the other hastened through the hall, and called to the other busy squires to follow along with him. They loosed the sweating horses from beneath the yoke
and tied them at the stalls of the horses, and flung before them spelt, and mixed therewith white barley. Then they tilted the chariot against the bright entrance walls, and led the men into the divine palace. But at the sight they marvelled as they passed through the palace of the king, fostered of Zeus;
for there was a gleam as of sun or moon over the high-roofed house of glorious Menelaus. But when they had satisfied their eyes with gazing they went into the polished baths and bathed.