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Acharnians   


CHORUS (singing; with intense hatred)
I will hear nothing; do not address me; I hate you more than I
do Cleon, whom one day I shall flay to make sandals for the Knights.
Listen to your long speeches, after you have treated with the
Laconians? No, I will punish you.
DICAEOPOLIS
Friends, leave the Laconians out of debate and consider only
whether I have not done well to conclude my truce.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
Done well! when you have treated with a people who know neither
gods, nor truth, nor faith.
DICAEOPOLIS
We attribute too much to the Laconians; as for myself, I know that
they are not the cause of all our troubles.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
Oh, indeed, rascal! You dare to use such language to me and then
expect me to spare you!
DICAEOPOLIS
No, no, they are not the cause of all our troubles, and I who
address you claim to be able to prove that they have much to
complain of in us.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
This passes endurance; my heart bounds with fury. Thus you dare to
defend our enemies.
DICAEOPOLIS
Were my head on the block I would uphold what I say and rely on
the approval of the people.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
Comrades, let us hurl our stones and dye this fellow purple.
DICAEOPOLIS
What black fire-brand has inflamed your heart! You will not hear
me? You really will not, Acharnians?
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
No, a thousand times, no.
DICAEOPOLIS
This is a hateful injustice.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
May I die if I listen.
DICAEOPOLIS
Nay, nay! have mercy, have mercy, Acharnians.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
You shall die.
DICAEOPOLIS
Well, blood for blood! I will kill your dearest friend. I have
here the hostages of Acharnae; I shall disembowel them.
(He goes into the house.)
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
Acharnians, what means this threat? Has he got one of our children
in his house? What gives him such audacity?
DICAEOPOLIS (coming out again)
Stone me, if it please you; I shall avenge myself on this. (He
shows them a basket.)
Let us see whether you have any love for your
coals.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
Great Gods! this basket is our fellow-citizen. Stop, stop, in
heaven's name!
DICAEOPOLIS
I shall dismember it despite your cries; I will listen to nothing.
CHORUS (singing; tragically)
How, will you kill this coal-basket, my beloved comrade?
DICAEOPOLIS
Just now you would not listen to me.
CHORUS (singing; plaintively)
Well, speak now, if you will; tell us, tell us you have a weakness

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