Page:Ten Tragedies of Seneca (1902).djvu/141

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Lines 609—637]

thankfully. Clotho forbids by virtue of her calling, anything to stand still; she is constantly rotating the fate of every mortal. No one has ever yet found the Gods so propitious that he can with certainty promise himself anything as for to-morrow. The God that rules all things, from his rapidly rotating wheel, rolls forth our destinies exactly as they are pre-ordered!



A Messenger who was present, reports the cruel deed of Atreus, and how his own children were served up to Thyestes at the wicked feast, and eloquently describes those matters, which were very properly concealed from the eyes of spectators within the house.


What whirlwind will transport me headlong into the air and envelop me in some sombre cloud, that my vision may be spared to witness such revolting crimes? Oh! The Dynasty! at which Pelops and Tantalus even would be abashed!

CHOR. What news dost thou bring?

MESS. In what region of the Earth am I? Is it Argos, or is it Sparta, the country of these two affectionate brothers? Or is It Corinth, whose straits are between two seas? Or is it on the borders of the Danube, which favors the savage Alani? Or the land of Hyrcania, with its eternal snows? Or am I amongst the wandering Scythians? Or what place can it be, that is the scene of wickedness too horrible to be mentioned?

CHOR. Speak out, man, and tell us what the wickedness is, whatever it may be.

MESS. I will, when I can collect my mental faculties, my mind is in a sort of standstill, and when my stiffened limbs congealed with horror, begin to thaw! The sight of the dreadful deed is still before my eyes! Oh! Wild hurricanes transport me far, far from such a scene of horror! Let me be conveyed somewhere, unvisited by the light of day!