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The Argonautica

Page: 74

(ll. 57-65) "Not I alone then stray to the Latinian cave, nor do I alone burn with love for fair Endymion; oft times with thoughts of love have I been driven away by thy crafty spells, in order that in the darkness of night thou mightest work thy sorcery at ease, even the deeds dear to thee. And now thou thyself too hast part in a like mad passion; and some god of affection has given thee Jason to be thy grievous woe. Well, go on, and steel thy heart, wise though thou be, to take up thy burden of pain, fraught with many sighs."

(ll. 66-82) Thus spake the goddess; but swiftly the maiden's feet bore her, hasting on. And gladly did she gain the high-bank of the river and beheld on the opposite side the gleam of fire, which all night long the heroes were kindling in joy at the contest's issue. Then through the gloom, with clear-pealing voice from across the stream, she called on Phrontis, the youngest of Phrixus' sons, and he with his brothers and Aeson's son recognised the maiden's voice; and in silence his comrades wondered when they knew that it was so in truth. Thrice she called, and thrice at the bidding of the company Phrontis called out in reply; and meantime the heroes were rowing with swift-moving oars in search of her. Not yet were they casting the ship's hawsers upon the opposite bank, when Jason with light feet leapt to land from the deck above, and after him Phrontis and Argus, sons of Phrixus, leapt to the ground; and she, clasping their knees with both hands, thus addressed them:

(ll. 83-91) "Save me, the hapless one, my friends, from Aeetes, and yourselves too, for all is brought to light, nor doth any remedy come. But let us flee upon the ship, before the king mounts his swift chariot. And I will lull to sleep the guardian serpent and give you the fleece of gold; but do thou, stranger, amid thy comrades make the gods witness of the vows thou hast taken on thyself for my sake; and now that I have fled far from my country, make me not a mark for blame and dishonour for want of kinsmen."

(ll. 92-98) She spake in anguish; but greatly did the heart of Aeson's son rejoice, and at once, as she fell at his knees, he raised her gently and embraced her, and spake words of comfort: "Lady, let Zeus of Olympus himself be witness to my oath, and Hera, queen of marriage, bride of Zeus, that I will set thee in my halls my own wedded wife, when we have reached the land of Hellas on our return."

(ll. 99-108) Thus he spake, and straightway clasped her right hand in his; and she bade them row the swift ship to the sacred grove near at hand, in order that, while it was still night, they might seize and carry off the fleece against the will of Aeetes. Word and deed were one to the eager crew. For they took her on board, and straightway thrust the ship from shore; and loud was the din as the chieftains strained at their oars, but she, starting back, held out her hands in despair towards the shore. But Jason spoke cheering words and restrained her grief.


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