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The Choephori   


What if Zeus bid our ill wind veer to fair?

NURSE
And how? the home's hope with Orestes dies.

LEADER
Not yet-a seer, though feeble, this might see.

NURSE
What say'st thou? Know'st thou aught, this tale belying?

LEADER
Go, tell the news to him, perform thine hest,-
What the gods will, themselves can well provide.

NURSE
Well, I will go, herein obeying thee;
And luck fall fair, with favour sent from heaven. She goes out.

CHORUS singing
strophe 1

Zeus, sire of them who on Olympus dwell,
Hear thou, O hear my prayer!
Grant to my rightful lords to prosper well
Even as their zeal is fair!
For right, for right goes up aloud my cry-
Zeus, aid him, stand anigh!

refrain 1

Into his father's hall he goes
To smite his father's foes.
Bid him prevail by thee on throne of triumph set,
Twice, yea and thrice with joy shall he acquit the debt.

antistrophe 1

Bethink thee, the young steed, the orphan foal
Of sire beloved by thee, unto the car
Of doom is harnessed fast.
Guide him aright, plant firm a lasting goal,
Speed thou his pace,-O that no chance may mar
The homeward course, the last!

strophe 2

And ye who dwell within the inner chamber
Where shines the stored joy of gold-
Gods of one heart, O hear ye, and remember;
Up and avenge the blood shed forth of old,
With sudden rightful blow;
Then let the old curse die, nor be renewed
With progeny of blood,-
Once more, and not again, be latter guilt laid low!

refrain 2

O thou who dwell'st in Delphi's mighty cave,
Grant us to see this home once more restored
Unto its rightful lord!
Let it look forth, from veils of death, with joyous eye
Unto the dawning light of liberty;

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