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[800] Now, lady, I will tell you the truth. When on my journey I was near those three roads, there I met a herald, and a man in a carriage drawn by colts, as you have described. The leader and the old man [805] himself tried to thrust me rudely from the path. Then, in anger, I struck the one pushing me aside, the driver, and the old man, when he saw this, watched for the moment I was passing, and from his carriage, brought his double goad straight down on my head. [810] Yet he was paid back with interest: with one swift blow from the staff in this hand he rolled right out of the carriage onto his back. I slew every one of them. But if this stranger had any tie of kinship to Laius, [815] who is now more wretched than this man before you? What mortal could be proved more hateful to the gods? No stranger, no citizen, is allowed to receive him at home, it is unlawful for anyone to accost him, and all must push him from their homes. And this—this curse— [820] was laid on me by no other mouth than my own. And I pollute the bed of the slain man with the hands by which he perished. Am I now vile? Oh, am I not utterly unclean, seeing that I must be banished, and in banishment neither see my own people, [825] nor set foot in my own land, or else be joined in wedlock to my mother, and slay my father Polybus, who sired and reared me? Then would he who judged these things to be sent down by some cruel divinity not be right about Oedipus? [830] Prevent, prevent, you pure and awful gods, me from ever seeing that day! No, may I be swept away from all men, before I see myself visited with that brand of doom.

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    • Sir Richard C. Jebb, Commentary on Sophocles: Antigone, 651
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