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Old man, you all shoot your arrows at me, like archers at their mark, and I am not safe [1035] even from the plottings of the seer's divine art, but by their tribe I have long been bought and sold and made their merchandise. Turn your profits, make your deals for the white gold of Sardis and the gold of India, if it pleases you, but you shall not cover that man with a grave, [1040] not even if the eagles of Zeus wish to snatch and carry him to be devoured at the god's throne. No, not even then, for fear of that defilement will I permit his burial, since I know with certainty that no mortal has the power to defile the gods. [1045] But even the exceedingly clever, old Teiresias, falls with a shameful fall, when they couch shameful thoughts in fine phrasing for profit's sake.

Alas! Does any man know, does any consider—

What is this? What universal truth are you announcing?

[1050] —by how much the most precious of our possessions is the power to reason wisely?

By as much, I think, as senselessness is the greatest affliction.

Yet you came into being full of that disease.

I have no desire to trade insults with the seer.

Yet that is what you do in saying that I prophesy falsely.

[1055] Yes, for the prophet-clan was ever fond of money.

And the race sprung from tyrants loves shameful gain.

Do you know that you ramble so about your king?

I am aware, since through me you have saved this city.

You are a wise seer, but fond of doing injustice.

[1060] You will stir me to utter the dire secret in my soul.

Out with it! But only if it is not for gain that you speak it.

Indeed, I think I speak without mention of gain—where you are concerned.

Be certain that you will not trade in my will.

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load focus Notes (Sir Richard C. Jebb, 1900)
load focus Greek (Francis Storr, 1912)
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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Antigone, 241
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    • Raphael Kühner, Bernhard Gerth, Ausführliche Grammatik der griechischen Sprache, KG 3.1.1
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