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The Suppliants   


Go quickly! let none linger, else this hand
Ruthless will hale you by your tresses hence.
CHORUS
Alack, O father! from the shrine
Not aid but agony is mine.
As a spider he creeps and he clutches his prey,
And he hales me away.
A spectre of darkness, of darkness. Alas and alas! well-a-day!
O Earth, O my mother! O Zeus, thou king of the earth, and her
child!
Turn back, we pray thee, from us his clamour and threatenings wild!
HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
Peace! I fear not this country's deities.
They fostered not my childhood nor mine age.
CHORUS
Like a snake that is human he comes, he shudders and crawls to my
side:
As an adder that biteth the foot, his clutch on my flesh doth
abide.
O Earth, O my mother! O Zeus, thou king of the earth, and her
child!
Turn back, we pray thee, from us his clamour and threatenings wild!

HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
Swift each unto the ship; repine no more,
Or my hand shall not spare to rend your robe.
CHORUS
O chiefs, O leaders, aid me, or I yield!

HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
Peace! if ye have not ears to hear my words,
Lo, by these tresses must I hale you hence.
CHORUS
Undone we are, O king! all hope is gone.

HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
Ay, kings enow ye shall behold anon,
Aegyptus' sons-Ye shall not want for kings.
The KING OF ARGOS enters with his retinue.

THE KING OF ARGOS
Sirrah, what dost thou? in what arrogance
Darest thou thus insult Pelasgia's realm?
Deemest thou this a woman-hearted town?
Thou art too full of thy barbarian scorn
For us of Grecian blood, and, erring thus,
Thou dost bewray thyself a fool in all!
HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
Say thou wherein my deeds transgress my right.

THE KING OF ARGOS
First, that thou play'st a stranger's part amiss.

HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
Wherein? I do but search and claim mine own.

THE KING OF ARGOS
To whom of our guest-champions hast appealed?

HERALD OF AEGYPTUS
To Hermes, herald's champion, lord of search.

THE KING OF ARGOS
Yea, to a god-yet dost thou wrong the gods!

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