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The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy

Page: 89

'So I spoke, and they agreed to wait until the web was woven. In the daytime I wove it, but at night I unravelled the web. So three years passed away. Then the fourth year came, and my wooers were hard to deal with. My treacherous handmaidens brought them upon me as I was unravelling the web. And now I cannot devise any other plan to keep the marriage away from me. My parents command me to marry one of my wooers.S

aid Odysseus, 'Lady, it is hard for one so long parted from him to tell thee what thou hast asked. It is now twenty years since I saw Odysseus. He wore a purple mantle that was fastened with a brooch. And this brooch had on it the image of a hound holding a fawn between its fore-paws. All the people marvelled at this brooch, for it was of gold, and the fawn and the hound were done to the life. And I remember that there was a henchman with Odysseus—he was a man somewhat older than his master, round shouldered and black-skinned and curly headed. His name was Eurybates, and Odysseus honoured him above the rest of his company.'

When he spoke, giving such tokens of Odysseus, Penelope wept again. And when she had wept for a long time she said:

'Stranger, thou wert made welcome, but now thou shalt be honoured in this hall. Thou dost speak of the garments that Odysseus wore. It was I who gave him these garments, folding them myself and bringing them out of the chamber. And it was I who gave him the brooch that thou hast described. Ah, it was an evil fate that took him from me, bringing him to Troy, that place too evil to be named by me.'


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