Imatges de pÓgina

Cruelly conducting, that neither god,
Nor any other had rejoiced at this.
But now the sport of winds, unhappy one,
A source of pleasure to my foes I suffer.

CH. Who so hard-hearted

Of the gods, to whom these things are pleasant?

Who does not sympathize with thy

Misfortunes, excepting Zeus? for he in wrath always

Fixing his stubborn mind,

Afflicts the heavenly race;

Nor will he cease, until his heart is sated;

Or with some palm some one may take the power hard to be taken.

PR. Surely yet, though in strong

Fetters I am now maltreated,

The ruler of the blessed will have need of me,

To show the new conspiracy, by which

He's robbed of sceptre and of honors,

And not at all me with persuasion's honey-tongued
Charms will he appease, nor ever

Shrinking from his firm threats, will I
Declare this, till from cruel

Bonds he may release, and to do justice
For this outrage be willing.

CH. You are bold; and to bitter

Woes do nothing yield,
But too freely speak.

But my mind piercing fear disturbs;
For I'm concerned about thy fortunes,
Where at length arriving you may see
An end of these afflictions. For manners

Inaccessible, and a heart hard to be dissuaded has the son of


PR. I know, that- Zeus is stern and having
Justice to himself. But after all

He will one day be, when thus he's crushed,
And his stubborn wrath allaying,
Into agreement with me and friendliness
Earnest to me earnest he at length will come.

CH. The whole account disclose and tell us plainly,
In what crime taking you Zeus

Thus disgracefully and bitterly insults;

Inform us, if you are nowise hurt by the recital.

PR. Painful indeed it is to me to tell these things,

And a pain to be silent, and every way unfortunate.
When first the divinities began their strife,
And discord 'mong themselves arose,
Some wishing to cast out Kronos from his seat,

That Zeus might reign, forsooth, others the contrary
Striving, that Zeus might never rule the gods;
Then I the best advising, to persuade
The Titans, sons of Uranus and Chthon,
Unable was; but crafty stratagems
Despising with rude minds,

They thought without trouble to rule by force;
But to me my mother not once only, Themis,
And Gaea, of many names one form,

How the future should be accomplished had foretold,

That not by power, nor by strength

Would it be necessary, but by craft the victors should prevail.
Such I in words expounding,

They deigned not to regard at all.

The best course therefore of those occurring then

Appeared to be, taking my mother to me,

Of my own accord to side with Zeus glad to receive me;

And by my counsels Tartarus' black-pitted

Depth conceals the ancient Kronos,
With his allies. In such things by me
The tyrant of the gods having been helped,
With base rewards like these repays me,
For there is somehow in kingship
This disease, not to trust its friends.
What then you ask, for what cause
He afflicts me, this will I now explain.
As soon as on his father's throne

He sat, he straightway to the gods distributes honors,
Some to one and to another some, and arranged

The government; but of unhappy mortals account
Had none; but blotting out the race
Entire, wished to create another new.
And these things none opposed but I,
But I adventured; I rescued mortals
From going destroyed to Hades.
Therefore indeed with such afflictions am I bent,
To suffer grievous, and piteous to behold,
And holding mortals up to pity, myself am not
Thought worthy to obtain it; but without pity
Am I thus corrected, a spectacle inglorious to Zeus.

CH. Of iron heart and made of stone,

Whoe'er, Prometheus, with thy sufferings

Does not grieve; for I should not have wished to see
These things, and having seen them I am grieved at heart.

PR. Indeed to friends I'm piteous to behold.

CH. Did you in no respect go beyond this?

PR. True, mortals I made cease foreseeing fate.
CH. Having found what remedy for this ail?
PR. Blind hopes in them I made to dwell.

Cн. A great advantage this you gave to men.

PR. Beside these, too, I bestowed on them fire.

Cн. And have mortals flamy fire?

PR. From which indeed they will learn many arts.

CH. Upon such charges then does Zeus

Maltreat you, and nowhere relax from ills?
Is there no term of suffering lying before thee?

PR. Nay, none at all, but when to him it may seem good.

CH. And how will it seem good? What hope? See you not that
You have erred? But how you 've erred, for me to tell
Not pleasant, and to you a pain. But these things
Let us omit, and seek you some release from sufferings.

PR. Easy, whoever out of trouble holds his

Foot, to admonish and remind those faring
Ill. But all these things I knew,

Willing, willing I erred, I'll not deny ;
Mortals assisting I myself found trouble.
Not indeed with penalties like these thought I
That I should pine on lofty rocks,
Gaining this drear unneighbored hill.
But bewail not my present woes,
But alighting, the fortunes creeping on
Hear ye, that ye may learn all to the end.
Obey me, obey, sympathize
With him now suffering. Thus indeed affliction
Wandering round, sits now by one, then by another.

CH. Not to unwilling ears do you urge

This, Prometheus.

And now with light foot the swift-rushing

Seat leaving, and the pure ether,

Path of birds, to this peaked
Ground I come; for thy misfortunes
I wish fully to hear.


Oc. I come to the end of a long way
Travelling to thee, Prometheus,
By my will without bits directing
This wing-swift bird;

For at thy fortunes know I grieve.
And, I think, affinity thus

Impels me, but apart from birth,

There's not to whom a higher rank

I would assign than thee.

And you will know these things as true, and not in vain
To flatter with the tongue is in me. Come, therefore,
Show how it is necessary to assist you;




For never will you say, than Ocean
There's a firmer friend to thee.

PR. Alas! what now? And you then of my sufferings
Come spectator? How didst thou dare, leaving

The stream which bears thy name, and rock-roofed
Caves self-built, to the iron-mother

Earth to go? To behold my fate

Hast come, and to compassionate my ills?
Behold a spectacle, this, the friend of Zeus,
Having with him stablished his tyranny,
With what afflictions by himself I'm bent.

Oc. I see, Prometheus, and would admonish

Thee the best, although of varied craft.
Know thyself, and fit thy manners

New; for new also the king among the gods.
But if thus rude and whetted words

Thou wilt hurl out, quickly may Zeus, though sitting

Far above, hear thee, so that thy present wrath

Of troubles child's play will seem to be.

But, O wretched one, dismiss the indignation which thou hast,

And seek deliverance from these woes.

Like an old man, perhaps, I seem to thee to say these things;
Such, however, are the wages

Of the too lofty speaking tongue, Prometheus,

But thou art not yet humble, nor dost yield to ills,

And beside the present wish to receive others still.
But thou wouldst not, with my counsel,

Against the pricks extend your limbs, seeing that
A stern monarch, irresponsible reigns.

And now I go, and will endeavor,

If I can, to release thee from these sufferings.
But be thou quiet, nor too rudely speak.

Knows't thou not well, with thy superior wisdom, that
On a vain tongue punishment is inflicted?

PR. I congratulate thee that thou art without blame,

Having shared and dared all with me,

And now leave off, and let it not concern thee.

For altogether thou wilt not persuade him, for he's not easily persuaded,

But take heed yourself lest you be injured by the way.

Oc. Far better thou art to advise those near

Than thyself; by deed and not by word I judge.
But me hastening by no means mayest thou detain,
For I boast, I boast, this favor will Zeus
Grant me, from these sufferings to release thee.

PR. So far I praise thee, and will never cease;
For zeal you nothing lack. But
Strive not; for in vain, nought helping
Me, thou 'lt strive, if aught to strive you wish.
But be thou quiet, holding thyself aloof,

For I would not, though I'm unfortunate, that on this ac


Evils should come to many.

Oc. Surely not, for me too the fortunes of thy brother
Atlas grieve, who towards the evening-places
Stands, the pillar of heaven and earth

Upon his shoulders bearing, a load not easy to be borne.
And the earth-born inhabitant of the Cilician
Caves, seeing, I pitied, the savage monster
With a hundred heads, by force o'ercome,
Typhon impetuous, who stood 'gainst all the gods,
With frightful jaws hissing out slaughter;
And from his eyes flashed a gorgonian light,
Utterly to destroy by force the sovereignty of Zeus ;
But there came to him Zeus' sleepless bolt,
Descending thunder, breathing flame,
Which struck him out from lofty
Boastings. For struck to his very heart,
His strength was scorched and thundered out.
And now a useless and extended carcass
Lies he near a narrow passage of the sea,
Pressed down under the roots of Etna.
And on the topmost summit seated, Hephaistus

Hammers the ignited mass, whence will burst out at length
Rivers of fire, devouring with wild jaws

Fair-fruited Sicily's smooth fields;

Such rage will Typhon make boil over

With hot discharges of insatiable fire-breathing tempest,
Though by the bolt of Zeus burnt to a coal.

PR. Thou art not inexperienced, nor dost want

My counsel; secure thyself as thou know'st how;
And I against the present fortune will bear up,
Until the thought of Zeus may cease from wrath.

Oc. Know'st thou not this, Prometheus, that

Words are healers of distempered wrath? PR. If any seasonably soothe the heart,

And swelling passion check not rudely. Oc. In the consulting and the daring

What harm seest thou existing? Teach me. PR. Trouble superfluous, and light-minded folly. Oc. Be this my ail then, since it is

Most profitable being wise not to seem wise.

PR. This will seem to be my error.

Oc. Plainly homeward thy words remand me.
PR. Aye, let not grief for me into hostility cast thee

Oc. To the new occupant of the all-powerful seats?

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