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Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Solomos Bilingual Anthology : HYMN TO LIBERTY

* Excerpts, translated by Rudyard Kipling  * Greek Fonts


Icon of the Christ and New Testament Reader
KNOW YOU of old
Oh divinely restored,
By the light of your eyes
And the edge of your sword.

From the graves of our people
Shall your spirit prevail
As we greet you again-
Hail, Liberty, Hail!

Long did you dwell
Amid the peoples that mourn
Awaiting some voice
That should tell you to return

ὕμνος εἰς τὴν ἐλευθερίαν

Σὲ γνωρίζω ἀπὸ τὴν κόψι
τοῦ σπαθιοῦ τὴν τρομερή,
σὲ γνωρίζω ἀπὸ τὴν ὄψι,
ποὺ μὲ βία μετράει τὴ γῆ.
Ἀπ' τὰ κόκκαλα βγαλμένη
τῶν Ἑλλήνων τὰ ἱερά,
καὶ σὰν πρῶτα ἀνδρειωμένη,
χαῖρε, ὦ χαῖρε, Ἐλευθεριά!
Ἐκεῖ μέσα ἐκατοικοῦσες
πικραμένη, ἐντροπαλή,
κ' ἕνα στόμα ἐκαρτεροῦσες,
ἔλα πάλι, νὰ σοῦ πῇ.

Ah, slow broke that day
and no man dared call,
For the shadow of tyranny
Lay over all.

Oh, unfortunate one!
The only consolation you had
were the past glories,
and remembering them you cried.

Long you have awaited
for a freedom-loving call
and in despair one hand
hits the other one.
Ἄργειε νἄλθῃ ἐκείνη ἡ μέρα,
καὶ ἦταν ὅλα σιωπηλά,
γιατὶ τἄσκιαζε ἡ φοβέρα,
καὶ τὰ πλάκωνε ἡ σκλαβιά.
Δυστυχής! Παρηγορία
μόνη σοῦ ἔμενε, νὰ λὲς
περασμένα μεγαλεῖα,
καὶ διηγῶντάς τα νὰ κλαῖς.
Καὶ ἀκαρτέρει, καὶ ἀκαρτέρει
φιλελεύθερη λαλιά
ἕνα ἐκτύπαε τ' ἄλλο χέρι
ἀπὸ τὴν ἀπελπισιά,
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Three Millennia of Greek Literature

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