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The Nurse screams inside the palace.
Was it my fancy or did I indeed
hear someone wailing in the house just now?
What can it be?
Someone whose scream is clearly full of anguish,
boding some new disaster for this palace.
Take notice
with what strange, darkened aspect this old woman
870comes from the house: she means to tell us something. Enter Nurse

Nurse
My children, great indeed were the misfortunes
the gift to Heracles has brought upon us.

Chorus
Old woman, tell us what new thing has happened.

Nurse
Queen Deianeira has departed now
upon her final journey, without stirring.

Chorus
You do not mean that she has died?

Nurse
I do.

Chorus
Poor woman, is she dead?

Nurse
Twice I have told you.

Chorus
Oh, poor lost mistress! Tell me now the manner of her death.

Nurse
880The deed was cruel.

Chorus
Come tell me, woman, how she met her fate.

Nurse
She brought her own life to an end.

Chorus
What passion or what madness
led her to wield the evil blade? How could she plan this death
after the other death which she had caused?

Nurse
With a stroke of the mournful steel.

Chorus
Ah, foolish woman! did you see it then?

Nurse
I saw it, yes; for I was standing near.

Chorus
890What happened? Come now, speak.

Nurse
By her own hand she wrought the deed.

Chorus
What are you saying?

Nurse
Only what is true.

Chorus
This new bride, Iole, has brought to being
her first-born child -
a Fury wreaking violence on our house!

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