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THE SUPPLIANTS by Aeschylus, Part III

refrain 1

O Apian land of hill and dale,
Thou kennest yet, O land, this faltered foreign wail
Have mercy, hear my prayer!
Lo, how again, again, I rend and tear
My woven raiment, and from off my hair
Cast the Sidonian veil!

strophe 7

The wafting oar, the bark with woven sail,
From which the sea foamed back,
Sped me, unharmed of storms, along the breeze's track-
Be it unblamed of me!
But ah, THE END, THE END of my emprise!
May He, the Father, with all-seeing eyes,
Grant me that end to see!

refrain 2

Grant that henceforth unstained as heretofore
I may escape the forced embrace
Of those proud children of the race
That sacred Io bore.

antistrophe 7

And thou, O maiden-goddess chaste and pure-
Queen of the inner fane-
Look of thy grace on me, O Artemis,
Thy willing suppliant-thine, thine it is;,
Who from the lustful onslaught fled secure,
To grant that I too without stain
The shelter of thy purity may gain!

refrain 2

Grant that henceforth unstained as heretofore
I may escape the forced embrace
Of those proud children of the race
That sacred Io bore!

strophe 8

Yet if this may not be,
We, the dark race sun-smitten, we
Will speed with suppliant wands
To Zeus who rules below, with hospitable hands
Who welcomes all the dead from all the lands:
Yea, by our own hands strangled, we will go,
Spurned by Olympian gods, unto the gods below!

refrain 3

Zeus, hear and save!
The searching, poisonous hate, that Io vexed and drave,
Was of a goddess: well I know
The bitter ire, the wrathful woe
Of Hera, queen of heaven-
A storm, a storm her breath, whereby we yet are driven!

antistrophe 8

Bethink thee, what dispraise
Of Zeus himself mankind will raise,
If now he turn his face averted from our cries!
If now, dishonoured and alone,
The ox-horned maiden's race shall be undone,
Children of Epaphus, his own begotten son-
Zeus, listen from on high!-to thee our prayers arise.

refrain 3

Zeus, hear and save!
The searching poisonous hate, that lo vexed and drave,
Was of a goddess: well I know
The bitter ire, the wrathful woe
Of Hera, queen of heaven-
A storm, a storm her breath, whereby we yet are driven!

(After the CHORUS has finished its song and dance, DANAUS
comes forward.)

 

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