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Three Millennia of Greek Literature


Rhapsody 22

Literally Translated, with Explanatory Notes, by Theodore Alois Buckley

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"Thou hast injured me, O Far-darter, most destructive of all gods, having now turned me away hither from the wall; certainly many had now seized the earth with their teeth, before they had arrived at Ilium. But now hast thou deprived me of great glory, and hast preserved them easily, for thou didst not at all dread vengeance after. Certainly I would punish thee, if the power at least were mine."

Thus saying, he went towards the city greatly elate, hastening like a steed which bears away the prize, with his chariot, which striving hard, runs swiftly over the plain. So Achilles briskly moved his feet and his knees.

But him aged Priam first beheld with his eyes, rushing over the plain, all shining like a star which rises in autumn; and its resplendent rays shine among many stars in the depth of the night, which by name they call the dog of Orion. Very bright indeed is this, but it is a baleful sign, and brings violent heat upon miserable mortals. So shone the brass round the breast of him running. But the old man groaned, and smote his head with his hands, raising them on high,[696] and, groaning, he cried out greatly, supplicating his dear son. But he stood before the Scaean gates, insatiably eager to fight with Achilles; but the old man piteously addressed him, stretching out his hands:

[Footnote 696: On this gesture of grief, see Gorius, Monum. Columb. p. 12.]

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