The Complete Plays of Sophocles: A New Translation
Sophocles, Robert Bagg, James Scully
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Award-winningpoet-playwrights Robert Bagg and James Scully presenta gripping new translation of Western literature’s earliest treasures in TheComplete Plays of Sophocles. In the tradition of Robert Fagles’bestselling translations of The Iliad and The Odyssey, andretaining the textual authenticity of Richmond Lattimore’sAeschylus, Bagg and Scully render Sophocles’ dramasaccessible and exciting for the modern reader. Students new to Athenian drama,readers of classical literature, and anyone wishing to kindle anew theirpassion for Greek tragedy will find no more captivating entrance to thesemilestones of world literature than in Bagg andScully’s The Complete Plays of Sophocles.
I come here now? With suppliant prayers to you, my own father, and the prayers of my allies who now have set their siege around the plain of Thebes with seven hosts behind their seven spears. Swift-speared Amphiaraus, matchless warrior and matchless augur, is one; then the son of Oeneus, Aetolian Tydeus; Eteoclus the third, of Argive birth; the fourth Hippomedon, sent by his sire Talaos; while Capaneus, the fifth, vaunts that he will burn Thebes to the ground with fire; and sixth, Arcadian
Phanoteus the Phocian, on a weighty matter. CLYTEMNESTRA. What is it, sir? Tell me; coming from a friend you will bring, I know, a kindly message. TUTOR. Orestes is dead; that is the sum. ELECTRA. O miserable that I am! I am lost this day! CLYTEMNESTRA. What do you say, friend, what do you say? Do not listen to her. TUTOR. I said and say again: Orestes is dead. ELECTRA. I am lost, hapless one, I am undone! CLYTEMNESTRA (to ELECTRA). Look to your own concerns. But you, sir, tell me
What can your meaning be? ANTIGONE. Will you aid this hand of mine to lift the dead? ISMENE. You would bury him when it is forbidden to Thebes? ANTIGONE. I will do my part—and yours, if you will not—to a brother. False to him I will never be found. ISMENE. Ah, overbold! when Creon has forbidden? ANTIGONE. Nay, he has no right to keep me from my own. ISMENE. Ah me! think, sister, how our father perished, amid hate and scorn, when sins bared by his own search had moved him to strike both eyes
disobedience to my voice. HYLLUS. Ah, you will soon show, I think, how distempered you are! HERACLES. Yes, for you are breaking the slumber of my plague. HYLLUS. Unlucky me, what perplexities surround me! HERACLES. Yes, since you do not deign to hear your father. HYLLUS. But must I then learn to be impious, father? HERACLES. It is not impiety if you will gladden my heart. HYLLUS. Then do you command me to do this deed as a clear duty? HERACLES. I do command you—the gods bear me witness!
hand, but by a god’s; laid low, as men say, by the arrow of Phoebus. PHILOCTETES. Well, noble alike are the slayer and the slain! I scarcely know, my son, which I should do first, inquire into your wrong or mourn the dead. NEOPTOLEMUS. Your own sorrows, I think, are enough for you, without mourning for the woes of your neighbor. PHILOCTETES. You speak the truth. Resume your story, then, and tell me in what way they wronged you. NEOPTOLEMUS. They came for me in a ship with gaily decked