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Peace   


We go, but you, cleverest of all the gods, supervise our
labours; tell us, good workman as you are, what we must do; we shall
obey your orders with alacrity.
(They begin to lift the stones.)
TRYGAEUS
Quick, reach me your cup, and let us preface our work by
addressing prayers to the gods.
HERMES
Libation! Libation! Silence! Let us offer our libations and our
prayers, so that this day may begin an era of unalloyed happiness
for Greece and that he who has bravely pulled at the rope with us
may never resume his buckler.
TRYGAEUS
Aye, may we pass our lives in peace, caressing our mistresses
and poking the fire.
HERMES
May he who would prefer the war, oh Dionysus....
TRYGAEUS
Be ever drawing barbed arrows out of his elbows.
HERMES
If there be a citizen, greedy for military rank and honours, who
refuses, oh, divine Peace! to restore you to daylight....
TRYGAEUS
May he behave as cowardly as Cleonymus on the battlefield.
HERMES
If a lance-maker or a dealer in shields desires war for the sake
of better trade....
TRYGAEUS
May he be taken by pirates and eat nothing but barley.
HERMES
If some ambitious man does not help us, because he wants to become
a General, or if a slave is plotting to pass over to the enemy....
TRYGAEUS
Let his limbs be broken on the wheel, may he be beaten to death
with rods!
HERMES
As for us, may Fortune favour us! Io! Paean, Io!
TRYGAEUS
Don't say Paean, but simply, Io.
HERMES
Very well, then! Io! Io! Io! I'll simply say, Io!
TRYGAEUS
To Hermes, the Graces, the Horae, Aphrodite, Eros!
HERMES
But not to Ares.
TRYGAEUS
No.
HERMES
Nor to Enyalius.
TRYGAEUS
No.
(The stones have been removed and a rope attacked to the cover of
the pit. The indented portions of the following scene are a sort
of chanty.)

HERMES
Come, all strain at the ropes to tear off the cover. Pull!
CHORUS
Heave away, heave, heave, oh!
HERMES
Come, pull harder, harder.
CHORUS
Heave away, heave, heave, oh!
HERMES
Still harder, harder still.

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