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Enter CRITO, looking about him.
to himself. It was said that Chrysis used to live in this street, who preferred to gain wealth here dishonorably to living honestly as a poor woman in her own country: by her death that property has descended to me by law. 1 But I see some persons of whom to make inquiry. Accosting them. Good-morrow to you. MYSIS
Prithee, whom do I see? Isn't this Crito, the kinsman of Chrysis? It is he. CRITO
O Mysis, greetings to you. MYSIS
Welcome to you, Crito. CRITO
Is Chrysis then ----? 2 Alas! MYSIS
Too truly. She has indeed left us poor creatures quite heart-broken. CRITO
How fare you here, and in what fashion? Pretty well? MYSIS
What, we? Just as we can, as they say; since we can't as we would. CRITO
How is Glycerium? Has she discovered her parents yet? MYSIS
I wish she had. CRITO
What, not yet? With no favorable omen did I set out for this place; for, upon my faith, if I had known that, I never would have moved a foot hither. She was always said to be, and was looked upon as her sister; what things were hers she is in possession of; now for me to begin a suit at law here, the precedents of others warn me, a stranger, 3 how easy and profitable a task it would be for me. At the same time, I suppose that by this she has got some friend and protector; for she was pretty nearly a grown-up girl when she left there. They would cry out that I am a sharper; that, a pauper, I'm hunting after an inheritance; besides, I shouldn't like to strip the girl herself. MYSIS
O most worthy stranger! I'faith, Crito, you still adhere to your good old-fashioned ways. CRITO
Lead me to her, since I have come hither, that I may see her. MYSIS
By all means. They go into the house of GLYCERIUM. DAVUS
to himself. I'll follow them; I don't wish the old man to see me at this moment. He follows MYSIS and CRITO.
1 Descended to me by law: On the supposition that Chrysis died without a will, Crito as her next of kin would be entitled to her effects.
2 Is Chrysis then ----?: This is an instance of Aposiopesis; Crito, much affected, is unwilling to name the death of Chrysis. It was deemed of ill omen to mention death, and numerous Euphemisms or circumlocutions were employed in order to avid the necessity of doing so.
3 Warn me, a stranger: Patrick has the following remarks upon this passage: "Madame Dacier observes that it appears, from Xenophon's Treatise on the policy of the Athenians, that all the inhabitants of cities and islands in alliance with Athens were obliged in all claims to repair thither, and refer their cause to the decision of the people, not being permitted to plead elsewhere. We can not wonder then that Crito is unwilling to engage in a suit so inconvenient from its length, expense, and little prospect of success." She might have added that such was the partiality and corruptness of the Athenian people, that, being a stranger, his chances of success would probably be materially diminished.
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