Page:Ten Tragedies of Seneca (1902).djvu/449

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MEDEA.

roll onwards, in which the ocean will remove the impediments which now retard human affairs, and a new earth will be opened up to mankind, and the votaries of Tiphys (followers of the sea) will discover fresh worlds, and the present Thule (that island in the Northern Ocean) will not be the Ultima Thule in future worlds!


ACT III.

NURSE—MEDEA.

Medea rushes headlong towards the execution of her revenge, the nurse dissuading her from her projects, but in vain.

NURSE.

Oh! Nurseling, why pacest thou about the house so excitedly? Do not give way thus, but control thy passion and curb thy impetuousness! As when the Mænad (Bacchanal) becomes furious, from the influence she receives from the God, on the summits of snowy Pindus, or mountain-tops of Nysa, and just as she might have followed up wildly her inspired movement, so hither and thither Medea runs to and fro in a similarly wild manner, and revealing in her expression the look of maddened fury; her flushed face shows that she is drawing her breath hard, (from the lowest parts of her lungs)—she cries, and her eyes are overflowing with the tears arising out of her temper! She then brightens up on a sudden—laughs—in fact every passing mental mood takes its turn, as it is uppermost, (at one time pleased with the hope of carrying out her revenge, at another, anger at her past thwarted aspirations). She seems, one minute to hesitate as to what she should do, then she begins to threaten, shaking her head,—then storms furiously,—wails and groans! To what end will this weight of mental pressure lead? Upon whom will she wreak her threatening anger? When will that tempestuous wave of passion exhaust itself? Her anger is now at an overflowing height! I am certain she is not meditating within her mind any ordinary or moderate scheme of revenge! She will surpass herself! I am well acquainted with some of her past and gone bursts of anger, but something, I am positive, is now brewing that is dreadful, something on a large scale—something truly impious! I see fury marked on her countenance! May the Gods above only undeceive me as to my apprehensions, that is all!