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[830] But when the Tuscan trumpet gave its high-pitched signal and the two armies clashed in battle, what a great roar of shields was there, do you think, what mingled sound of groans and cries of pain? At first the rhythmic clash of the Argive infantry [835] broke our ranks, but then they retreated. Thereafter foot was locked with foot and man stood against man and the battle kept on in strength. Many soldiers fell. All about were heard the cries, ‘Dwellers in Athens—or You who sow the Argive [840] field—will you not keep disgrace from our city?’ By bending all our strength, with great toil, we at length put the Argive army to flight.

Then old Iolaus, seeing Hyllus rushing off, stretched out his right hand [845] and entreated him to take him onto his chariot. He took the reins and followed hard upon the chariot of Eurystheus. What I have said to this point I saw myself, from here on I will give you what I heard from the lips of others. As he was passing through the sacred district of Athene Pallenis,1 [850] looking toward Eurystheus' chariot he prayed to Hebe2 and to Zeus that he might be young again for a single day and exact retribution from his enemies. Now you may hear a marvel. A pair of stars stood above the chariot yoke [855] and covered the chariot in dark cloud. Those who are wise say that it was your son Heracles and Hebe. And out of this murky darkness he showed forth the youthful form of his young arms. Glorious Iolaus captured the four-horse chariot [860] of Eurystheus near the Skironian cliffs. He has bound his hands and returned with the general who once was fortunate, a glorious first-fruits of battle. By this present blow of fortune he makes loud proclamation that all mortals should learn [865] not to envy the fortunate man until you see he has died. For our fortunes may change with the day.

Chorus Leader
O Zeus, lord of victory, now I may look upon a day that has been set free from dreadful fear.

1 Cult-name of Athena as worshiped in the deme of Pallene.

2 Goddess who is the personification of Youth. She became Heracles' bride after his death.

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  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • E.C. Marchant, Commentary on Thucydides: Book 7, 7.71
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