previous next

My child, I did not praise your excessiveness when you committed your crime against the woman of Troy nor do I now praise your present excessive fear. Your husband will not, as you think, end his marriage to you, [870] won over by the insignificant words of a barbarian woman. For you are not his as a prisoner taken from Troy, but he has received you with a large dowry and you are the daughter of a man of importance and come from a city of no ordinary prosperity. Your father will not, as you fear, [875] abandon you and allow you to be banished from this house. But go inside and do not show yourself in front of this house lest you disgrace yourself [being seen in front of these halls, my daughter].

Enter by Eisodos B Orestes in travelling costume.

Chorus Leader
Look, here comes a stranger, a man of different hue from ourselves, [880] hastening towards us with speedy step.

Ladies who dwell in this foreign land, is this the house of Achilles' son and his royal residence?

Chorus Leader
It is. But who are you that ask this?

My name is Orestes, and I am son of Agamemnon [885] and Clytaemestra. I am going to the oracle of Zeus at Dodona. But since I have arrived in Phthia, I have decided to learn whether my kinswoman, Hermione of Sparta, is alive and enjoying good fortune. For though the land she dwells in [890] is far off from me, she is nonetheless dear to me.

Hermione kneels before Orestes and grasps his knees.

O son of Agamemnon, appearing like a haven from storm to sailors, I beg you by your knees, have pity on me for the ill-luck you see me suffering, for my fortunes are not good! I place about your knees [895] my arms, which have the force of suppliant garlands!

Ah! What is this? Do I make some mistake, or do I truly see this house's lady, Menelaus' daughter?

Yes, the only one Helen, daughter of Tyndareus, bore to my father in their house. You may be quite sure.

[900] O Phoebus, healer god, give us a resolution of these troubles! What is the matter? Is it from gods or mortals that you are being ill-treated?

In part I am to blame, in part my husband, and in part one of the gods. I am wholly undone.

What other misforune could there be to a woman who has not yet born [905] children than one affecting her marriage-bed?

The very point of my grief. You lead me well.

load focus Greek (David Kovacs)
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.
Troy (Turkey) (2)
Phthia (1)
Dodona (Greece) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (1 total)
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: