we may crown our father's tomb with wealthier hands than those which
grace it now.
I think, indeed, I think that he also had some part in sending her
these appalling dreams; still, sister, do this service, to help
thyself, and me, and him, that most beloved of all men, who rests in
the realm of Hades, thy sire and mine.
The maiden counsels piously; and thou, friend, wilt do her
bidding, if- thou art wise.
I will. When a duty is clear, reason forbids that two voices
should contend, and claims the hastening of the deed. Only, when I
attempt this task, aid me with your silence, I entreat you, my
friends; for, should my mother hear of it, methinks I shall yet have
cause to rue my venture.
(CHRYSOTHEMIS departs, to take the offerings to Agamemnon's grave.)
If I am not an erring seer and one who fails in wisdom, justice,
that hath sent the presage, will come, triumphant in her righteous
strength,- will come ere long, my child, to avenge. There is courage
in my heart, through those new tidings of the dream that breathes
comfort. Not forgetful is thy sire, the lord of Hellas; not
forgetful is the two-edged axe of bronze that struck the blow of
old, and slew him with foul cruelty.
The Erinys of untiring feet, who is lurking in her dread ambush,
will come, as with the march and with the might of a great host. For
wicked ones have been fired with passion that hurried them to a
forbidden bed, to accursed bridals, to a marriage stained with guilt
of blood. Therefore am I sure that the portent will not fail to
bring woe upon the partners in crime. Verily mortals cannot read the
future in fearful dreams or oracles, if this vision of the night
find not due fulfilment.
O chariot-race of Pelops long ago, source of many a sorrow, what
weary troubles hast thou brought upon this land! For since Myrtilus
sank to rest beneath the waves, when a fatal and cruel hand hurled him
to destruction out of the golden car, this house was never yet free
from misery and violence.
(CLYTEMNESTRA enters from the palace.)
At large once more, it seems, thou rangest,- for Aegisthus is
not here, who always kept thee at least from passing the gates, to
shame thy friends. But now, since he is absent, thou takest no heed of
me, though thou hast said of me oft-times, and to many, that I am a
bold and lawless tyrant, who insults thee and thine. I am guilty of no
insolence; I do but return the taunts that I often hear from thee.
Thy father- this is thy constant pretext- was slain by me. Yes, by
me- I know it well; it admits of no denial; for justice slew him,
and not I alone,- justice, whom it became thee to support, hadst
thou been right-minded; seeing that this father of thine, whom thou
art ever lamenting, was the one man of the Greeks who had the heart to
sacrifice thy sister to the gods- he, the father, who had not shared
the mother's pangs.
Come, tell me now, wherefore, or to please whom, did he