Page:Sophocles - Seven Plays, 1900.djvu/51

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468–503]
17
ANTIGONE

That were indeed a sorrow. This is none.
And if thou deem'st me foolish for my deed,
I am foolish in the judgement of a fool.
 Ch. Fierce shows the maidlen’s vein from her fierce
 sire;
Calamity doth not subdue her will.
 Cr. Ay, but the stubborn spirit first doth fall.
Oft ye shall see the strongest bar of steel,
That fire hath hardened to extremity,
Shattered to pieces. A small bit controls
The fiery steed. Pride may not be endured
In one whose life is subject to command.
This maiden hath been conversant with crime
Since first she trampled on the public law;
And now she adds to crime this insolence,
To laugh at her offence, and glory in it.
Truly, if she that hath usurped this power
Shall rest unpunished, she then is a man,
And I am none. lie she my sister’s child,
Or of yet, nearer blood to me than all
That take protection from my hearth, the pair
Shall not escape the worst of deaths. For know,
I count the younger of the twain no less
Copartner in this plotted funeral:
And now I bid you call her. Late I saw her
Within the house, beyond herself, and frantic.
—Full oft when one is darkly scheming wrong,
The disturbed spirit hath betrayed itself
Before the act it hides.—But not less hateful
Seems it to me, when one that hath been caught
In wickedness would give it a brave show.
 Ant. Wouldst thou aught more of me than merely
 death?
 Ant. No more. 'Tis all I claim. Death closes all.
 Ant. Why then delay? No talk of thine can charm
 me,
Forbid it Heaven! And my discourse no less
Must evermore sound noisome to thine ear.
Yet where could I have found a fairer fame
Than giving burial to my own true brother?