Well then, lend me three drachmae to buy a young pig; I wish to
have myself initiated before I die.
Oh! Zeus, the Thunderer!
I adjure you in the name of the gods, master, don't report us!
I may not, I cannot keep silent.
In the name of the meats which I brought you so good-naturedly.
Why, wretched man, Zeus will annihilate me, if I do not shout
out at the top of my voice, to inform him what you are plotting.
Oh, no! don't shout, I beg you, dear little Hermes.... And what
are you doing, comrades? You stand there as though you were stocks and
stones. Wretched men, speak, entreat him at once; otherwise he will be
Oh! mighty Hermes! do not do it; no, do not do it! If ever you
have eaten some young pig, sacrificed by us on your altars, with
pleasure, may this offering not be without value in your sight to-day.
Do you not hear them wheedling you, mighty god?
Be not pitiless toward our prayers; permit us to deliver the
goddess. Oh! the most human, the most generous of the gods, be
favourable toward us, if it be true that you detest the haughty crests
and proud brows of Pisander; we shall never cease, oh master, offering
you sacred victims and solemn prayers.
Have mercy, mercy, yourself be touched by their words; never was
your worship so dear to them as to-day. (Aside) Really they are the
greatest thieves that ever were. (To HERMES) And I shall reveal to you
a great and terrible plot that is being hatched against the gods.
Hah! speak and perchance I shall let myself be softened.
Know then, that the Moon and that infamous Sun are plotting
against you, and want to deliver Greece into the hands of the
Because it is to you that we sacrifice, whereas the barbarians
worship them; hence they would like to see you destroyed, that they
alone might receive the offerings.
Is it then for this reason that these untrustworthy charioteers
have for so long been defrauding us, one of them robbing us of
daylight and the other nibbling away at the other's disk?
Yes, certainly. So therefore, Hermes, my friend, help us with your
whole heart to find and deliver the captive and we will celebrate
the great Panathenaea in your honour as well as all the festivals of
the other gods; for Hermes shall be the Mysteries. the Dipolia, the
Adonia; everywhere the towns, freed from their miseries, will
sacrifice to Hermes the Liberator; you will be loaded with benefits of
every kind, and to start with, I offer you this cup for libations as
your first present.
Ah! how golden cups do influence me! Come, friends. get to work.
To the pit quickly, pick in hand, and drag away the stones.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS