Page:Ten Tragedies of Seneca (1902).djvu/137

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Lines 532—561]

THY. Whoever has had any experiences in such matters, must know how easily they may be lost to one!

ATR. Dost thou stand in my way then, brother mine, of gaining for myself great glory?

THY. Thy glory has already been acquired, it is mine that is waiting to be arrived at; but my own resolution is made up—namely, to refuse the crown!

ATR. I will give mine up altogether, unless thou wilt accept a share.

THY. I agree, I will bear the title of king, which thou hast granted me, but thou shalt have authority over my subjects, my armies and myself.

ATR. Place on thy venerable head the diadem which awaits to be placed there—I will offer to the Gods the victims, which I have promised them!


The Chorus is entering into the spirit of the preceding act, praises the fraternal affection of Atreus, which has put aside the hatred and differences between the brothers, in much such a way as the calm which follows the storm, serves to illustrate.

Who would credit it? Here is Atreus, that fierce, cruel, relentless man, actually loses his presence of mind, and appears perfectly dazed at the sight of his brother! Nothing, after all, is stronger than the affection arising out of blood-relationship—whilst feuds carried on by those who are aliens in blood, only grow more inveterate by time! When anger brought about by grievous events, caused the rupture between these brothers, the cry of war was heard! When the skirmishing light horsemen were on the move, amidst much champing of bits; here, there, everywhere, the naked sword flashed as it was flourished about, by ardent warriors, whom fierce Mars urges on, as with repeated onslaught, the rival combatants seek out for fresh slaughter. At length fraternal affection puts aside the sword of revenge, and draws them together with their hands clasped in friendship, once hostile!—Now reconciled! What propitious Deity has brought about such tranquillity out of so much disquiet? Only quite lately the sound of arms was rife throughout Mycenæ, in the beat of civil war—Pale, distracted