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Orestes
I must go, for to die ignobly is a coward's part.

Pylades
Well said.

Orestes
Shall we tell my sister?

Pylades
God forbid!

Orestes
True, there might be tears.

Pylades
That would be a grave omen.

Orestes
Yes, silence is clearly better.

Pylades
And you will gain time.

Orestes
[790] There is only one obstacle in my way.

Pylades
What fresh objection now?

Orestes
I am afraid the goddesses will prevent me by madness.

Pylades
But I will take care of you.

Orestes
It is annoying to have to touch a sick man.

Pylades
Not to me, when it is you.

Orestes
Beware of becoming a partner in my madness.

Pylades
Let that pass.

Orestes
You will not hesitate?

Pylades
No, for hesitation is a grave ill among friends.

Orestes
[795] On then, pilot of my course!

Pylades
A service I am glad to render.

Orestes
And guide me to my father's tomb.

Pylades
For what purpose?

Orestes
That I may appeal to him to save me.

Pylades
Yes, that is the proper way.

Orestes
May I not see my mother's grave!

Pylades
No; she was an enemy. But hasten, so that the vote of Argos may not catch you first, [800] supporting those limbs, slow from sickness, on mine; for I will carry you through the town, thinking little of the mob and unashamed. For how shall I prove my friendship, if not by helping you in sore distress?

Orestes
Ah! the old saying again, “get friends, not relations only.” [805] For a man who fuses into your ways, though he is an outsider, is better for a man to possess as a friend than a whole host of relations.Orestes and Pylades go out

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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Philoctetes, 889
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