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Alcestis   


dreams; for sweet it is to look on those we love in dreams, however
brief the night.
Ah! If I had the tongue and song of Orpheus so that I might
charm Demeter's Daughter or her Lord, and snatch you back from
Hades, would go down to hell; and neither Pluto's dog nor Charon,
Leader of the Dead, should hinder me until I had brought your life
back to the light!
At least await me there whenever I shall die, and prepare the
house where you will dwell with me. I shall lay a solemn charge upon
these children to stretch me in the same cedar shroud with you, and
lay my side against your side; for even in death let me not be
separate from you, you who alone were faithful to me!
LEADER (to ADMETUS)
And I also will keep this sad mourning with you, as a friend
with a friend; for she is worthy of it.
ALCESTIS
O my children, you have heard your father say that never will he
set another wife over you and never thus insult me.
ADMETUS
Again I say it, and will perform it too!
ALCESTIS (placing the children's hands in his)
Then take these children from my hand.
ADMETUS
I take them-dear gifts from a dear hand.
ALCESTIS
Now you must be the mother for me to my children.
ADMETUS
It must be so, since they are robbed of you.
ALCESTIS
O children, I should have lived my life out-and I go to the
Underworld.
ADMETUS
Alas! What shall I do, left alone by you?
ALCESTIS
Time will console you. The dead are nothing.
ADMETUS
Take me with you, by the Gods! Take me to the Underworld!
ALCESTIS
It is enough that I should die-for you.
ADMETUS
O Fate, what a wife you steal from me!
ALCESTIS (growing faint)
My dimmed eyes are heavily oppressed.
ADMETUS
O woman, I am lost if you leave me!
ALCESTIS
You may say of me that I am nothing.
ADMETUS
Lift up your head! Do not abandon your children!
ALCESTIS
Ah! Indeed it is unwillingly-but, farewell, my children!
ADMETUS
Look at them, look....
ALCESTIS
I am nothing.
ADMETUS
What are you doing? Are you leaving me?
ALCESTIS (falling back dead)
Farewell.
ADMETUS (staring at the body)
Wretch that I am, I am lost!
LEADER
She is gone! The wife of Admetus is no more.
EUMELUS (chanting)

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