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The Fall of Troy

Page: 46

  But to Idomeneus and Atreus' son
  Spake Nestor apart, and willingly they heard:
  "Friends, a great woe and unendurable
  This day the careless Gods have laid on us,
  In that into this lamentable strife
  Aias the mighty hath been thrust by them
  Against Odysseus passing-wise. For he,
  To whichsoe'er God gives the victor's glory—
  O yea, he shall rejoice! But he that loseth—
  All for the grief in all the Danaans' hearts
  For him! And ours shall be the deepest grief
  Of all; for that man will not in the war
  Stand by us as of old. A sorrowful day
  It shall be for us, whichsoe'er of these
  Shall break into fierce anger, seeing they
  Are of our heroes chiefest, this in war,
  And that in counsel. Hearken then to me,
  Seeing that I am older far than ye,
  Not by a few years only: with mine age
  Is prudence joined, for I have suffered and wrought
  Much; and in counsel ever the old man,
  Who knoweth much, excelleth younger men.
  Therefore let us ordain to judge this cause
  'Twixt godlike Aias and war-fain Odysseus,
  Our Trojan captives. They shall say whom most
  Our foes dread, and who saved Peleides' corse
  From that most deadly fight. Lo, in our midst
  Be many spear-won Trojans, thralls of Fate;
  And these will pass true judgment on these twain,
  To neither showing favour, since they hate
  Alike all authors of their misery."


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