the first there were certain in the town that muttered against me,
chafing at this edict, wagging their heads in secret; and kept not
their necks duly under the yoke, like men contented with my sway.
'Tis by them, well I know, that these have been beguiled and
bribed to do this deed. Nothing so evil as money ever grew to be
current among men. This lays cities low, this drives men from their
homes, this trains and warps honest souls till they set themselves
to works of shame; this still teaches folk to practise villainies, and
to know every godless deed.
But all the men who wrought this thing for hire have made it
sure that, soon or late, they shall pay the price. Now, as Zeus
still hath my reverence, know this-I tell it thee on my oath:-If ye
find not the very author of this burial, and produce him before mine
eyes, death alone shall not be enough for you, till first, hung up
alive, ye have revealed this outrage,-that henceforth ye may thieve
with better knowledge whence lucre should be won, and learn that it is
not well to love gain from every source. For thou wilt find that
ill-gotten pelf brings more men to ruin than to weal.
May I speak? Or shall I just turn and go?
Knowest thou not that even now thy voice offends?
Is thy smart in the ears, or in the soul?
And why wouldst thou define the seat of my pain?
The doer vexes thy mind, but I, thine ears.
Ah, thou art a born babbler, 'tis well seen.
May be, but never the doer of this deed.
Yea, and more,-the seller of thy life for silver.
Alas! 'Tis sad, truly, that he who judges should misjudge.
Let thy fancy play with 'judgment' as it will;-but, if ye show
me not the doers of these things, ye shall avow that dastardly gains
(CREON goes into the palace.)
Well, may he be found! so 'twere best. But, be he caught or be
he not-fortune must settle that-truly thou wilt not see me here again.
Saved, even now, beyond hope and thought, I owe the gods great thanks.
(The GUARD goes out on the spectators' left.)
Wonders are many, and none is more wonderful than man; the power
that crosses the white sea, driven by the stormy south-wind, making
a path under surges that threaten to engulf him; and Earth, the eldest
of the gods, the immortal, the unwearied, doth he wear, turning the
soil with the offspring of horses, as the ploughs go to and fro from
year to year.
And the light-hearted race of birds, and the tribes of savage
beasts, and the sea-brood of the deep, he snares in the meshes of
his woven toils, he leads captive, man excellent in wit. And he
masters by his arts the beast whose lair is in the wilds, who roams
the hills; he tames the horse of shaggy mane, he puts the yoke upon