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Philoctetes
Ah, my winged prey, and you tribes of bright-eyed creatures held by this place in its upland pastures, leap no more [1150] in flight from your lairs, for I do not grasp in my hands those shafts which were once my strength—but now, gone, are my undoing! Roam at will now; the place has no more terrors—for you! [1155] The time is ripe for you to take blood for blood, to sate yourselves to your heart's desire on my discolored flesh! Soon I will leave life, for from what source can I find the means to live? Who can feed, as I will have to, [1160] on the winds, when he no longer owns any of the bounty that the life-giving earth supplies?

Chorus
In the name of the gods, if you have any reverence for a friend who approaches you in all kindness, approach him! [1165] But know this, and know it well: it is in your power to escape this plague. Cruel is it that you feed it with your own flesh, and that there is no way for you to learn to endure the countless torments that dwell with it.

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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Electra, 497
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