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I have said all else, one more point remains. If I had a witness to what manner of man I am and if I were pleading my case while she was still alive, your careful investigation would have discovered in very truth who the guilty party is. [1025] As things stand, I swear by Zeus, god of oaths, and by the earth beneath me that I never put my hand to your wife, never wished to, never had the thought. May I perish with no name or reputation [citiless, homeless, wandering the earth an exile] [1030] and may neither sea nor earth receive my body when I am dead if I am guilty! What the fear was that made her take her life I do not know, for I am not at liberty to speak further. Virtue she showed, though she did not possess it, [1035] while I who had it did not use it well.

Chorus Leader
You have made a sufficient rebuttal of the charge against you by giving your oath in the name of the gods, which is no slight assurance.

Is this man not a chanter of spells and a charlatan? He is confident that by his calm temper [1040] he will overmaster my soul though he has dishonored the father who begat him.

I feel the same great wonder at you, father. For if you were my son and I your father, I would not have banished but killed you, if you had dared to put your hand to my wife.

[1045] How like you these words are! Not thus will you die, according to the rule you have just laid down for yourself—for a swift death is a mercy for a wretch—but going as a wanderer from your ancestral land over foreign soil you will drain to the dregs a life of misery. [1050] [For that is the penalty for an impious man.]

Alas! What do you mean to do? Will you not even receive the witness of Time in my case but banish me from the land?

Yes, beyond the Euxine Sea and the Pillars of Atlas, if I could, such is my hatred of you.

[1055] Will you not examine my oath and sworn testimony or the words of seers? Will you banish me without a trial?

There's no divinatory chanciness about this tablet, and its accusation against you deserves my trust. As for the birds that fly above my head, I bid them a long farewell.

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