Cease; for I see Aegisthus full in view.
Rash boys, back, back!
Where see ye the man?
Yonder, at our mercy, be advances from the suburb, full of joy.
Make with all speed for the vestibule; that, as your first task
prospered. so this again may prosper now.
Fear not,- we will perform it.
Haste, then, whither thou wouldst.
See, I am gone.
I will look to matters here.
(ORESTES and PYLADES go back into the palace.)
'Twere well to soothe his ear with some few words of seeming
gentleness, that he may rush blindly upon the struggle with his doom.
Which of you can tell me, where are those Phocian strangers,
who, 'tis said, have brought us tidings of Orestes slain in the
wreck of his chariot? Thee, thee I ask, yes, thee, in former days so
bold,- for methinks it touches thee most nearly; thou best must
know, and best canst tell.
I know assuredly; else were I a stranger to the fortune of my
Where then may be the strangers? Tell me.
Within; they have found a way to the heart of their hostess.
Have they in truth reported him dead?
Nay, not reported only; they have shown him.
Can I, then, see the corpse with mine own eyes?
Thou canst, indeed; and 'tis no enviable sight.
Indeed, thou hast given me a joyful greeting, beyond thy wont.
Joy be thine, if in these things thou findest joy.
Silence, I say, and throw wide the gates, for all Mycenaeans and
Argives to behold; that, if any of them were once buoyed on empty
hopes from this man, now, seeing him dead, they may receive my curb,
instead of waiting till my chastisement make them wise perforce!
No loyalty is lacking on my part; time hath taught me the prudence
of concord with the stronger.
(The central doors of the palace
are thrown open and a shrouded corpse is
disclosed. ORESTES and PYLADES stand near it.)
O Zeus, I behold that which hath not fallen save by the doom of