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When the child of morning, rosy-fingered Dawn, appeared, Menelaos rose and dressed himself. He bound his sandals on to his comely feet, girded his sword about his shoulders, and left his room looking like an immortal god. Then, taking a seat near Telemakhos he said:

"And what, Telemakhos, has led you to take this long sea voyage to Lacedaemon? Are you on public or private business? Tell me all about it."

"I have come, sir replied Telemakhos, "to see if you can tell me anything about my father. I am being eaten out of house and home; my fair estate is being wasted, and my house is full of miscreants who in overweening hubris keep killing great numbers of my sheep and oxen, on the pretense of wooing my mother. Therefore, I am suppliant at your knees if haply you may tell me about my father's melancholy end, whether you saw it with your own eyes, or heard it from some other traveler; for he was a man born to trouble. Do not soften things out of any pity for myself, but tell me in all plainness exactly what you saw. If my brave father Odysseus ever did you loyal service either by word or deed, when you Achaeans were harassed in the dêmos of the Trojans, bear it in mind now as in my favor and tell me truly all."

Menelaos on hearing this was very much shocked. "So," he exclaimed, "these cowards would usurp a brave man's bed? A hind might as well lay her new born young in the lair of a lion, and then go off to feed in the forest or in some grassy dell: the lion when he comes back to his lair will make short work with the pair of them - and so will Odysseus with these suitors. By father Zeus, Athena, and Apollo, if Odysseus is still the man that he was when he wrestled with Philomeleides in Lesbos, and threw him so heavily that all the Achaeans cheered him - if he is still such and were to come near these suitors, they would have a swift doom and a sorry wedding. As regards your questions, however, I will not prevaricate nor deceive you, but will tell you without concealment all that the old man of the sea told me.

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load focus Notes (W. Walter Merry, James Riddell, D. B. Monro, 1886)
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hide References (8 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Thomas W. Allen, E. E. Sikes, Commentary on the Homeric Hymns, HYMN TO PAN
  • Cross-references to this page (4):
    • Raphael Kühner, Friedrich Blass, Ausführliche Grammatik der Griechischen Sprache, Dritte Deklination.
    • Raphael Kühner, Bernhard Gerth, Ausführliche Grammatik der griechischen Sprache, KG 1.4.2
    • Raphael Kühner, Bernhard Gerth, Ausführliche Grammatik der griechischen Sprache, KG 3.pos=7.2
    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), SA´GMINA
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