previous next

Darius
[715] How did it happen? Did some stroke of pestilence or factional strife come upon the State?

Atossa
Neither; but near Athens our whole host has been brought to ruin.

Darius
Tell me, what son of mine led our army there?

Atossa
Impetuous Xerxes, depopulating the whole surface of the continent.

Darius
Was it by land or sea that he made this mad expedition, the reckless man?

Atossa
[720] By both. There was a twofold front of double armies.

Darius
But how was it that so vast a land force won a passage to the farther shore?

Atossa
By a clever device he yoked the Hellespont so as to gain a passage.

Darius
What! Did he succeed in closing the mighty Bosporus?

Atossa
Yes indeed. One of the divine powers must have assisted him in his purpose.

Darius
[725] Alas! Some mighty power came upon him so that he was not able to think clearly.

Atossa
Yes, since we can see the outcome, what ruin he wrought.

Darius
And how then did they fare that you now lament them?

Atossa
Disaster to the naval force brought ruin to the force on land.

Darius
And did the whole army utterly perish by the spear?

Atossa
[730] Yes, and it is for this reason that the whole city of Susa groans at its desolation.

Darius
Alas for the loss of our warriors' valiant force and defence!

Atossa
And the host of the Bactrians is lost, wholly destroyed: not even an old man is left.

Darius
Unhappy man, since he has brought to ruin the youth of our allies.

Atossa
But Xerxes, alone and forlorn, with scanty train, they say—

Darius
[735] Met his end, how, tell me, and where? Of his safety is there any hope?

Atossa
To his joy he reached the bridge yoking the two continents.

Darius
And reached our continent in safety? Is this certain?

Atossa
Yes, a proven report establishes this. Doubt there is none.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (Herbert Weir Smyth, Ph.D., 1926)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Susa (Iran) (1)
Hellespont (Turkey) (1)
Bosporus (Turkey) (1)
Athens (Greece) (1)

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (4 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Oedipus Tyrannus, 1-150
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (3):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: