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Ion   


ION
And did the yawning earth swallow thy father? CREUSA
By Neptune's trident smote; and so he perish'd. ION
And Macrai call you not the fatal place? CREUSA
Why dost thou ask? What thoughts hast thou recall'd?, ION
Does Phoebus, do his lightnings honour it? CREUSA
Honour! Why this? Would I had never seen it! ION
Why? Dost thou hate the place dear to the god? CREUSA
No: but for some base deed done in the cave. ION
But what Athenian, lady, wedded thee?
CREUSA
Of Athens none, but one of foreign birth. ION
What is his name? Noble he needs must be. CREUSA
Xuthus, by Aeolus derived from Jove.
ION
How weds a stranger an Athenian born?
CREUSA
Euboea is a state neighbouring on Athens. ION
A narrow sea flows, I have heard, between. CREUSA
Joining the Athenian arms, that state he wasted. ION
Confederate in the war, thence wedded thee? CREUSA
The dowral meed of war, earn'd by his spear. ION
Comest thou with him to Delphi, or alone? CREUSA
With him, gone now to the Trophonian shrine. ION
To view it, or consult the oracle?
CREUSA
Both that and this, anxious for one response. ION
For the earth's fruits consult you, or for children? CREUSA
Though wedded long, yet childless is our bed. ION
Hast thou ne'er borne a child, that thou hast none? CREUSA
My state devoid of children Phoebus knows. ION
Bless'd in all else, luckless in this alone. CREUSA
But who art thou? Bless'd I pronounce thy mother. ION
Call'd as I am the servant of the god.
CREUSA
Presented by some state, or sold to this? ION
I know not aught save this, I am the god's. CREUSA
And in my turn, stranger, I pity thee.
ION
As knowing not my mother, or my lineage. CREUSA
Hast thou thy dwelling here, or in some house? ION
The temple is my house, ev'n when I sleep. CREUSA
A child brought hither, or in riper years? ION
An infant, as they say, who seem to know. CREUSA
What Delphian dame sustain'd thee at her breast? ION
I never knew a breast. She nourish'd me. CREUSA
Who, hapless youth? Diseased, I find disease. ION
The priestess: as a mother I esteem her. CREUSA
Who to these manly years gave thee support? ION
The altars, and the still-succeeding strangers. CREUSA
Wretched, whoe'er she be, is she that bore thee. ION
I to some woman am perchance a shame.
CREUSA
Are riches thine? Thou art well habited. ION
Graced with these vestments by the god I serve. CREUSA
Hast thou made no attempt to trace thy birth? ION
I have no token, lady, for a proof.
CREUSA
Ah, like thy mother doth another suffer. ION
Who? tell me: shouldst thou help me, what a joy CREUSA
One for whose sake I come before my husband. ION
Say for what end, that I may serve thee, lady. CREUSA
To ask a secret answer of the god.
ION

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