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The Clouds   


UNJUST DISCOURSE
What's the matter with being a broad-arse?
JUST DISCOURSE
Is there anything worse than that?
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Now what will you say, if I beat you even on this point?
JUST DISCOURSE
I should certainly have to be silent then.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Well then, reply! Our advocates, what are they?
JUST DISCOURSE
Sons of broad-arses.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Nothing is more true. And our tragic poets?
JUST DISCOURSE
Sons of broad-arses.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Well said again. And our demagogues?
JUST DISCOURSE
Sons of broad-arses.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
You admit that you have spoken nonsense. And the spectators,
what are they for the most part? Look at them.
JUST DISCOURSE
I am looking at them.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Well! What do you see?
JUST DISCOURSE
By the gods, they are nearly all broad-arses. (pointing) See, this
one I know to be such and that one and that other with the long hair.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
What have you to say, then?
JUST DISCOURSE
I am beaten. Debauchees! in the name of the gods, receive my
cloak; I pass over to your ranks.
(He goes back into the Thoughtery.)
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Well then! Are you going to take away your son or do you wish me
to teach him how to speak?
STREPSIADES
Teach him, chastise him and do not fail to sharpen his tongue
well, on one side for petty law-suits and on the other for important
cases.
UNJUST DISCOURSE
Don't worry, I shall return him to you an accomplished sophist.
PHIDIPPIDES
Very pale then and thoroughly hang-dog-looking.
LEADER OF THE CHORUS
Take him with you. (The UNJUST DISCOURSE and PHIDIPPIDES go into
the THOUGHTERY. To STREPSIADES, who is just going into his own house.)

I think you will regret this. (The CHORUS turns and faces the
audience.)
judges, we are all about to tell you what you will gain
by awarding us the crown as equity requires of you. In spring, when
you wish to give your fields the first dressing, we will rain upon you
first; the others shall wait. Then we will watch over your corn and
over your vinestocks; they will have no excess to fear, neither of
heat nor of wet. But if a mortal dares to insult the goddesses of
the Clouds, let him think of the ills we shall pour upon him. For
him neither wine nor any harvest at all! Our terrible slings will
mow down his young olive plants and his vines. If he is making bricks,
it will rain, and our round hailstones will break the tiles of his
roof. If he himself marries or any of his relations or friends, we
shall cause rain to fall the whole night long. Verily, he would prefer
to live in Egypt than to have given this iniquitous verdict.

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