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“So I spoke, and he straightway made answer and said: ‘Nay, seek not to speak soothingly to me of death, glorious Odysseus. I should choose, so I might live on earth,1 to serve as the hireling of another, [490] of some portionless man whose livelihood was but small, rather than to be lord over all the dead that have perished. But come, tell me tidings of my son, that lordly youth, whether or not he followed to the war to be a leader. And tell me of noble Peleus, if thou hast heard aught, [495] whether he still has honor among the host of the Myrmidons, or whether men do him dishonor throughout Hellas and Phthia, because old age binds him hand and foot. For I am not there to bear him aid beneath the rays of the sun in such strength as once was mine in wide Troy, [500] when I slew the best of the host in defence of the Argives. If but in such strength I could come, were it but for an hour, to my father's house, I would give many a one of those who do him violence and keep him from his honor, cause to rue my strength and my invincible hands.’ “So he spoke, and I made answer and said: [505] ‘Verily of noble Peleus have I heard naught, but as touching thy dear son, Neoptolemus, I will tell thee all the truth, as thou biddest me. I it was, myself, who brought him from Scyros in my shapely, hollow ship to join the host of the well-greaved Archaeans. [510] And verily, as often as we took counsel around the city of Troy, he was ever the first to speak, and made no miss of words; godlike Nestor and I alone surpassed him. But as often as we fought with the bronze on the Trojan plain, he would never remain behind in the throng or press of men, [515] but would ever run forth far to the front, yielding to none in his might; and many men he slew in dread combat. All of them I could not tell or name, all the host that he slew in defence of the Argives; but what a warrior was that son of Telephus whom he slew with the sword, [520] the prince Eurypylus! Aye, and many of his comrades, the Ceteians, were slain about him, because of gifts a woman craved.2 He verily was the comeliest man I saw, next to goodly Memnon. And again, when we, the best of the Argives, were about to go down into the horse which Epeus made, and the command of all was laid upon me, [525] both to open and to close the door of our stout-built ambush, then the other leaders and counsellors of the Danaans would wipe away tears from their eyes, and each man's limbs shook beneath him, but never did my eyes see his fair face grow pale at all, nor see him [530] wiping tears from his cheeks; but he earnestly besought me to let him go forth from the horse, and kept handling his sword-hilt and his spear heavy with bronze, and was eager to work harm to the Trojans. But after we had sacked the lofty city of Priam, he went on board his ship with his share of the spoil and a goodly prize— [535] all unscathed he was, neither smitten with the sharp spear nor wounded in close fight, as often befalls in war; for Ares rages confusedly.’

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    • Raphael Kühner, Friedrich Blass, Ausführliche Grammatik der Griechischen Sprache, B. Konsonanten.
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