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I wish to rebuke you in turn, briefly, not lifting my eyes too high shamelessly, but in more sober fashion, [380] as a brother; for it is a good man's way to be considerate. Tell me, why this burst of fury, these bloodshot eyes? who wrongs you? what is it you want? are you longing to have a virtuous wife? WeIl, I cannot supply you; for she, whom you once had, was ill-controlled by you. Am I then, a man who never went astray, to suffer for your sins? [385] or is it my popularity that galls you? No! it is the longing you have to keep a beautiful woman in your embrace, casting reason and honor to the winds. A bad man's pleasures are like himself. Am I mad, if I change to wiser counsels, after previously deciding amiss? Yours is the madness rather in wishing to recover [390] a wicked wife, once you had lost her—a stroke of heaven-sent luck. Those foolish suitors swore that oath to Tyndareus in their longing to wed; but Hope was the goddess that led them on, I think, and she it was that brought it about rather than you and your strength. So take the field with them; they are ready for it in the folly of their hearts; for the deity is not without insight, but is able to discern [395] where oaths have been wrongly pledged or forcibly extorted. I will not slay my children, nor shall your interests be prospered by justice in your vengeance for a worthless wife, while I am left wasting, night and day, in sorrow for what I did to one of my own flesh and blood, contrary to all law and justice. [400] Here is your answer shortly given, clear and easy to understand; and if you will not come to your senses, I shall do the best for myself.

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