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Aristophanes Index


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THE CLOUDS by Aristophanes, Part 22

STREPSIADES
He has not dethroned him. I believed it, because of this whirligig
here. Unhappy wretch that I am! I have taken a piece of clay to be a
god.
PHIDIPPIDES
Very well! Keep your stupid nonsense for your own consumption.
(He goes back into STREPSIADES' house.)
STREPSIADES
Oh! what madness! I had lost my reason when I threw over the
gods through Socrates' seductive phrases. (Addressing the statue of
Hermes) Oh! good Hermes, do not destroy me in your wrath. Forgive
me; their babbling had driven me crazy. Be my counselor. Shall I
pursue them at law or shall I....? Order and I obey.-You are right, no
law-suit; but up! let us burn down the home of those praters. Here,
Xanthias, here! take a ladder, come forth and arm yourself with an
axe; now mount upon the Thoughtery, demolish the roof, if you love
your master, and may the house fall in upon them. Ho! bring me a
blazing torch! There is more than one of them, arch-impostors as
they are, on whom I am determined to have vengeance.
A DISCIPLE (from within)
Oh! oh!
STREPSIADES
Come, torch, do your duty! Burst into full flame!
DISCIPLE
What are you up to?
STREPSIADES
What am I up to? Why, I am entering upon a subtle argument with
the beams of the house.
SECOND DISCIPLE (from within)
Hullo! hullo who is burning down our house?
STREPSIADES
The man whose cloak you have appropriated.
SECOND DISCIPLE
You are killing us!
STREPSIADES
That is just exactly what I hope, unless my axe plays me false, or
I fall and break my neck.
SOCRATES (appearing at the window)
Hi! you fellow on the roof, what are you doing up there?
STREPSIADES (mocking SOCRATES' manner)
I am traversing the air and contemplating the sun.
SOCRATES
Ah! ah! woe is upon me! I am suffocating!
SECOND DISCIPLE
And I, alas, shall be burnt up!
STREPSIADES
Ah! you insulted the gods! You studied the face of the moon! Chase
them, strike and beat them down! Forward! they have richly deserved
their fate-above all, by reason of their blasphemies.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
So let the CHORUS file off the stage. Its part is played.


THE END

 

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Aristophanes Index

 

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