Hippolytus, by Euripides

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  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides



    EURIPIDESTranslated by Robert Gonzalez

    Dramatis Personae

    The Goddess AphroditeTheseus, King Of Athens and Troizen

    Phaidra, Daughter of Minos, King of Crete, Wife to Theseus

    Hippolytus, Bastard Son of Theseus and the Amazon HippolytaThe Nurse of Phaidra

    A Messenger of Hippolytus

    The Goddess Artemis

    An Old Hunter

    A Chorus of HuntersAttendants of Phaidra, Hippolytus, and Theseus

    A Chorus of Troizenian Women, with their Leader

    The scene is laid in Troizen, in Argolis in the Peloponnesus, southwest of Athens, across

    the Saronic Gulf.

    2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.

  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides


    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    (Aphrodite appears.)


    I am Aphrodite, sea-born goddess of Kypris.

    Across lands far and wide, people worship me.

    Those who do, I bless.Those who shun me, I destroy.

    Because even in the heart and mind of a goddess

    Lives that which hungers for human praise.

    Hear my words and see how I will make them come to pass.

    Hippolytus bastard son of Theseus and that Amazon, Hippolyta

    who was raised here in Troizen by saintly King Pittheus,this Hippolytus he alone despises me.

    He spurns my love spells and lives without desire for womens charms.

    But he exalts great Apollo's virgin sister, Artemis,Holds her most high of all the gods, gives her love and praise,And consecrates his worship by running incessantly with her

    through the wild, dark woods, with swift hounds,

    chasing and slaying all manner of angry beasts.

    I dont grudge this insolent boy his love for the virgin goddess.

    Why should I?

    Yet, since he offended me, then by my own hand, his end has already begun.

    Listen as I tell you how:

    Years ago, Hippolytus journeyed from Pittheus castle hereTo Athens, seeking the vision of the sacred Mysteries.Phaidra, his fathers high-born Queen,

    Saw him then, and when she did,

    Her heart ripped open and her loins flooded

    with torrents of sexual passion.This was my doing.

    And for him, all that long while ago,

    Phaidra built a shrine to me on the AcropolisFacing over the sea at Troizen here,

    Keeping watch on her secret loves land.

    Then came the day when Theseus, for the crime of murdering a kinsman,Fled Athens to exile himself here, bringing Phaidra with him.

    And now this fatally love-wounded Queen,

    Suffering silently always,Slowly wastes her life away, keeping her secret so close

  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides


    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    That no one has heard or even dreamed of it.

    But her secret passion shall not end this way!

    No, I assure you Theseus will hear of it,

    And with a deadly curse he will slay

    That proud prince with the power granted him byPoseidon, his father three wishes that he must fulfill.

    And Phaidra will regain her honor, but she will die.

    It must be so if I am to have my revenge on one who dishonors me.

    This Prince Hippolytus approaches,

    Fresh from the chase,

    His fellow hunters at his heels - a loud throngPouring forth praises to the virgin goddess!

    So I go my way now.

    He has no idea that the Gates of Death open wide for himAnd that this will be the last he sees of daylight.

    (Hippolytus and his hunter companions enter.)

    HIPPOLYTUSMen, join me in praising Zeuss heaven-born daughter, our protector!

    FIRST HUNTERArtemis, Virgin Goddess,

    I worship and adore you.

    SECOND HUNTERBlessd maiden, ever pure, ever chaste,

    I am yours forever,

    Daughter of Zeus and Leto.


    Loveliest and most powerful of goddesses,

    Divine Artemis, Olympian,

    Who roam your fathers golden palace,May I bask in your radiance forever.


    I bring you this garland wreath, my Queen,from a virgin green meadow

    Where no shepherd has ever grazed his flock,

    A meadow never touched by cutting blade.

    No worldly man may pluck its smallest leaf Only one whose heart is pure.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    So, dear lady, receive this coronal for your golden tresses

    From the hand of him that worships you.I alone of all mortals have this privilege:

    I spend my days with you, speak with you,

    I hear your voice, though I can never see your face!

    Blessd goddess, grant me this:Let me end my lifes race even as I began it pure and virtuous!


    My Princeif I offered you some wise advice, would you welcome it?


    Of course I would. Id be foolish not to.


    Do you know the one law that holds true throughout the world?

    HIPPOLYTUSTell me.


    People hate arrogance.


    Thats right. Arrogance breeds hatred everywhere.


    And dont all people value love and grace?


    Yes, they value even a little when they receive it.

    OLD HUNTERAnd what do you think of the gods? Is it the same with them?


    Certainly, since we are fashioned in their image.

    OLD HUNTERWhy then are you so arrogant as not to worship


    Whom? Whom dont I worship? Tell me.

    OLD HUNTERShe stands right in front of you the Kyprian Queen! Aphrodite.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    HIPPOLYTUSI worship her. From a distance. I am celibate.


    Nevertheless, she is powerful throughout the world, and she deserves your reverence.


    Whatever gods thrive in the dark are not for me.


    What the gods ask, dear boy, we humans must pay!

    HIPPOLYTUSEach of us honors the gods of his own choice.

    OLD HUNTERWell, then, may the gods you choose to honor make you happy ... and wiser!


    Men, make your way to the banquet inside;

    Its only right that you feast after the hunt.Then, groom my horses. After I have eaten my fill,

    Ill yoke them to my chariot and race them.

    (He makes a minimal gesture of respect to the statue of Aphrodite.)Theres my worship for your dark goddess that and no more.

    OLD HUNTERO Kypris, goddess I give you proper worship.Ive lived too long to mimic the pride of the young and foolish.

    Rather, on my knees I pray to you:

    If this youths rash folly offends you,

    Forgive him; turn a deaf ear.Immortals should be wiser than mortals.

    (A chorus of women and their leader, citizens of Troizen, enter.)


    There is a cliff dripping water whose source, men say, is the Great Ocean.A flowing stream pours over its beetling edge,

    Where women gather to dip their pitchers.There I found a friend who soaked her bright-colored clothes

    And warmed them in the noonday sun.

    She told me news of our mistress, Queen Phaidra.

    She suffers, languishing in her sickbed, keeps indoors,

  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides


    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    Shading her raven locks with fine-spun cloths.

    For three days now she eats no food,Afflicted with some secret agony

    She sets her lifes sails toward Deaths harbor.

    Has some god, Pan or Hecate, possessed you, mistress?Have the Great Mother, Cybele, and her Korybantes driven you mad?

    Have you sinned against Artemis, failing to offer her oil and honey?

    Is it King Theseus, your husband?Does some other woman rule his passion,

    Making fiery love to him in some secret bed?

    Or has some messenger from Krete brought news

    To this hospitable harbor,News so grievous that you take refuge in your bed?

    Womans nature is complex and difficult.We suffer the agonizing pangs of childbirthAnd the delirium they bring.

    These tempests have howled through my own womb.

    But I called to heavenly Artemis, mistress of arrows,

    who soothes those pains, and always gods be praised Comes to my aid.

    CHORUS LEADERBut here is her nurse before the door,

    Bringing our Queen out of the palace into the fresh air.

    How ravaged her body is wasted, her skin so pale!I long to know what has brought her to this!

    (Nurse enters, followed by servants carrying an elegant couch. Next, Phaidra enters,

    attended by two handmaids. The couch is set down and Phaidra lies on it restlessly

    during this next speech.)


    O, how sick and sore are the days of mortals!

    What shall I do for you, or not do for you?Here is daylight, here is the bright sky,

    Weve brought your sickbed outside for you.Coming outside was all you talked of.

    But already youre unhappy.Nothing that you have pleases you;

    You crave only what you dont have.

    Soon you will want to hurry back inside.

    I would rather be sick than nurse the sick.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    Lying sick is simple; nursing the sick torments both the hands and heart.

    Mortal life is all trouble, and there is no rest from toil.If there is more to love than this life, it is shrouded in darkness.

    So we cling to this little patch of daylight, for its all we know.

    As for the world below: all we know of that are rumors.


    Lift me up a little, hold my head higher!

    My arms are so weak. Hold them, girls.

    Ah, this headdress restricts me. Take it off!Spread my tresses over my shoulders.

    Let my long hair stream down.

    NURSECalm down, child. Relax.

    Stop thrashing about, youll exhaust yourself.

    Remember you are a queen. Bear your illness nobly, gently.All mortals suffer.


    O, how I long to drink pure water from a dewy spring

    And lie under the poplar trees in the virgin meadow.


    Child, what wild words are these?Cant you see these women hear you?

    PHAIDRATake me to the mountain!I want to go to the pine wood,

    Where hounds hunt wild beasts,

    And chase the spotted deer!

    In the name of all the gods,How I long to shout to those hounds

    And hurl a sharp javelin past my wind-blown hair!

    NURSEChild, this is the fever speaking, not you.

    Where did this sudden passion for hunting come from?And why do you yearn for spring water

    When water streams down the dewy palace slope?


    Mistress of the Salt Lake,

    Artemis, mistress of thundering horses!O, I want to ride the plains, taming Venetian colts!

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    NURSEMore wild words! Your frenzy carries you away!

    First youre off to the mountains to hunt with dogs,

    Now you yearn to race horses!

    We need to bring in a prophet to uncover which of the godsDrives you away from yourself, child.

    PHAIDRA (coming to her senses)

    What have I said?How far have I strayed from my right mind?

    I was mad, some angry god got hold of me.

    Im so ashamed, so miserably humiliated.

    Nurse, cover my face!I cant hold back my tears. Please cover me!

    Sanity is torture, yet madness is unbearable.

    Best for me to blacken my mind and die.


    Here, Im covering your face.

    But when will Death cover this body of mine.

    Long life has taught me this:love in moderation, limit your affection, dont let it go bone-deep.

    The ties of love should be easy to loosen, to cast aside or tighten.

    Its a cruel burden to bearthat anyone should suffer for two, as I suffer for her.

    And so I say: a limit to everything.

    The wise will bear me out.

    (Phaidra rests more calmly on her couch as the Chorus Leader approaches the Nurse.)


    Nurse, we see our Queen suffer, yet none of us can fathom her illness. Tell us.


    I dont know and she wont say.


    Not even the cause?

    NURSENot that or anything. Not a word.


    How weak and wasted her body is!

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.



    No wonder: three days without food.


    Has she gone mad? Or does she mean to die?


    I dont know. But starving will take her there.

    LEADERHow strange that Theseus lets her do this.


    She hides her pain, pretending she is well.


    Cant he see the suffering in her face?


    No, as it happens, Theseus is away.

    LEADERIts up to you, then, to make her reveal the cause of her sickness.

    NURSEIve tried everything to no avail.

    Yet even now, I wont relax my efforts.

    All you ladies, bear witness to how faithfully I serve her in her time of need.

    Come, child, lets both forget what we said before.

    You be more gracious, smooth your furrowed brow, calm your mind.

    As for me, perhaps I misunderstood you before, but now let me suggest this:

    If you fear even to name your illness, these women will help you.If you can speak of it to men, let us bring you a doctor.

    But please dont just sit in silence.

    If Im wrong, correct me or if Im right, agree!

    Say something! Look at me!

    Its no use, women. Im as far off as before.

    You are as stubborn as the sea!Listen to me: if you die you betray your sons,

    who will never inherit their fathers house.

    Instead, they will be the slaves of that bastard son,

    puffed up with proud ambition, that the Amazon bore to Theseus.You know who I mean: Hippolytus.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.




    That touched a nerve, did it?


    Nurse, do you want to kill me!? By all the gods, never speak his name again!


    You see? Your mind is clear;

    Then why wont you help your children and save your own life?


    I love my children. But another fate tears at me.

    NURSEYou have no blood on your hands, do you?


    My hands are clean. Its my heart thats stained.


    Has some enemy's spell darkened your psyche?


    Someone near to me destroys me, against both our wills.



    PHAIDRANo, and may I never do him wrong.


    Then what is this evil that makes you crave death?

    PHAIDRALeave me to my sin. I dont sin against you.


    Not willingly! But if I fail to save you, its your fault.

    PHAIDRAAre you trying to force my secret from me now? Let go my hand!

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    NURSENo, Ill never let you go.


    If you knew the truth, you would be doomed.


    Nothing would be worse than losing you.


    Dying with my secret will bring me honor.

    NURSEWhy hide what honors you?

    PHAIDRABecause shame has been the cause of it.


    Reveal it then, and claim a higher honor!


    By the gods, leave me alone, let go!


    Never! Until you give me what I ask.

    PHAIDRA (after a pause)Do you really care so much?

    All right then, Ill give in. How can I not?

    Ill tell you what you want to know.


    Ill be silent. Now its your turn to speak.

    PHAIDRAPasipha, mother, Queen of Krete, what a god-inspired passion inflamed you!

    So powerful, so overwhelming, so degenerate.

    NURSEYes, the story is well known. She coupled with the Kretan Bull,

    Poseidons gift to your father, King Minos.

    The Sea-God drove her to it.


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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    And you, poor sister, Ariadne, Dionysus' bride!


    A sad fate, indeed. But why are you calling to your relatives?

    PHAIDRAI am the third, suffering a similar fate!


    Im confused. What are you saying?


    My curse comes from the far past. It is inherited, it isnt new.


    Your words have not made your anguish clearer.

    PHAIDRAOh, if only you would speak the words for me!


    I cant read minds.


    What do they mean who say people are in love?


    Great pleasure along with great pain.


    Right now, I only feel great pain.

    NURSEAre you in love? With whom?


    His name is I cant speak it The son of the Amazon



    You spoke it, not me.

    NURSEWhat can you mean, child? This will kill me.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    Women, this is unbearable, unbearable!

    How can I bear to live any longer?I hate this day, I hate my life!

    Now I know that Aphrodite is more powerful than a god.

    She has brought Phaidra, me, and this house to ruin.


    Did you hear?

    Did you hear the queen speak of sorrows too painful to hear?

    Better for me to die than know the depths of your troubles.What bitterness we mortals must hold inside us!

    Phaidra, your lips have unleashed your doom.

    With your words you have brought calamity into the daylight.

    What will come to pass with the passing hours?What fate will fall upon this house now?

    O princess of Krete, the mighty Kypris, sea-born Aphrodite,

    Has propelled you to an uncertain end.


    Women of Troizen,

    You who live here on the eastern edge of Pelops land,

    I have thought long and hard, during sleepless nights,How our mortal lives are brought to ruin.

    Not from lack of good sense, for many have that.

    Rather, some fall from laziness, others from putting pleasure above honor.Life is full of pleasures: long, leisurely talks, pure idleness, daydreaming.

    Yet some pleasures are harmless, some are deadly.

    When love wounded me, I considered how best to bear it.First I determined to cloak it in silence, for the tongue cannot be trusted.Then I tried to bear this madness nobly by exercising self-restraint.

    When both of these plans failed, when sea-born Aphrodite conquered me completely,

    I resolved to die, without doubt the best solution.

    For just as I would not have my good deeds unknown,So I would not have a crowd witness my shameful ones.

    I knew that both the deed and that even the longing for it brings disgrace.

    I knew also how men despise us women!

    And I despise the woman who first stained her marriage bed with adultery!It began with women of noble birth, for women of lower birth will always imitate them.

    I also hate those women hypocrites who speak chaste words but sin in secret.How can these women look into the faces of their husbands?

    How can they not be afraid that the darkness their accomplice And the very timbers of the house will break into speech and expose them?

    My friends, this is why I have resolved to die

    rather than bring shame to my husband and children.

    I want them to live in glorious Athens as free men,Free to speak openly and flourish, not live cowering in the shadow of my shame.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    LEADER OF CHORUSVirtue is everywhere admired and brings with it honor and renown.


    Mistress, your last words to me,those that told me the cause of your suffering, shocked me.

    Yet now I realize I was being selfish, simple-minded.

    Perhaps second thoughts are wiser.

    You are in love. Is that so strange? So are many others.Do you want to die just because you love?

    No one can withstand it when Aphrodite floods you with passion.

    If you give in to it, she blesses you.

    But if you fight her, she takes you down.She moves through the air, through the sea,

    and all living beings come from her.

    We know that mighty Zeus lusted for Semeleand that Dawn, the goddess of glowing light,carried away Cephalus to heaven, out of love for him.

    These deities are not exiled but still live in the heavens.

    They are content to have had love conquer them.

    But you wont give in?Well then, you should have been born in a different world,

    with different gods and nature.

    How many men do you think men wise enough see their wives unfaithful, and look the other way?

    How many fathers do you think

    help to supply their wayward sons with Aphrodites pleasures?True, it is human wisdom to keep dishonorable deeds out of sight,but not to aim for perfection.

    No, if the the good youve done outweighs the bad,

    in human terms you are lucky indeed.

    So, enough with these wicked thoughts, this pride!This blasphemy, to try to fight the gods.

    Accept it: a god has willed your passion.

    LEADER OF THE CHORUSPhaidra, she advises a quicker and easier solution to your problem.

    But it is you I praise.Yet this praise may be more painful for you to hear.


    This is just what destroys our well-ordered cities and homes:

    Seductive speeches! Words to delight our ears!

    Dont tell me what I want to hear;Tell me what will preserve my honor.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    NURSEWhy so high and mighty? You dont need me to preach to you.

    You need that man!

    This is the time for plain talk.

    If this were not a matter of life or death,If you were really in control of yourself,

    I would never push you to do this just for sexual pleasure.

    But as things stand, Im trying to save your life.

    Theres nothing wrong in that.


    Your remedy is disgusting! Shameful!


    Shameful, yes! But better for you than lofty ideals!

    Better to consummate the deed, and save your life,Than let honor take you to the grave.


    Quiet! Urge me no more!

    My heart is already sharpened with desireAnd if you keep insisting so eloquently,

    Ill give in to the very thing from which I am trying to run.

    NURSE (after a pause)

    Then if you wish to run from it, hear me out:

    I have love medicine inside I only just now remembered it.This will free you from your sickness without disgrace.Well need a token from the man you love,

    -- a lock of hair, some threads from his clothes

    then Ill mix this token with a charm that will bring you relief.


    This medicine, is it a potion or a salve?

    NURSEEither one. What matters is what it will do, not how it works.


    You frighten me. I think your schemes will ruin me.


    How? What exactly do you fear?


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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    That you will tell Hippolytus.


    Dont worry, child, Ill take care of everything for you.

    (She comes before the statue of Aphrodite.)

    Aphrodite, Kypris, sea-born goddess, help me.

    As for my other plans,

    a word with a certain person will be enough.

    (She goes inside the palace.)

    CHORUSEros, Desire, distilling liquid yearning on lovers eyes,

    Bringing sweet pleasure to souls you conquer,

    May you never come to me in violence, but only in harmony.For neither lightning bolts nor the shooting starsSurpass the power of Aphrodites arrows you throw.

    All sacrifice is useless if we fail to honor Eros,

    Who holds the keys to Aphrodites sweet chambers.He ruins those he visits with every kind of calamity.

    Iole, princess of Oechalia, virgin, unwed,Free-roaming as a footloose Naiad or reveling Maenad

    Sea-born Kypris took her from her fathers home,

    And bound her through blood and fire with marriage to Herakles,Who sacked her city, killed her family, and took her by force.

    Thebes, bear witness to the ways of Kypris:

    How she enticed Semele, mother of Dionysus, to lust for Zeus,

    Whose blazing lightning consumed her in his bed.

    The goddess of Love is terrible,

    Hovering everywhere, like a bee, always ready to sting.

    PHAIDRA (who has been listening at the palace door)Shhh! Quiet, women! (listens) Its over for me.


    What is it, your majesty? Why do you say that?

    PHAIDRA (still listening)Quiet! Let me hear these voices within.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    Oh, how can I endure this?!


    What do you hear that makes you so afraid, that presses on your heart?

    PHAIDRAMy life is done. Stand here next to this door and hear what an uproar fills the house.


    You are by the door. You tell us.


    Its Hippolytus, horse-loving son of the Amazon, shouting, raging at my nurse.


    I hear the sound of voices, but nothing clearly.

    What is he saying?


    Filthy peddler of vice. Traitor to your masters marriage bed.

    LEADERNo! You are betrayed, my Queen!

    What once was hidden is now revealed

    And you are ruined betrayed by the one closest to you.


    She has destroyed me.She was trying to help heal my sickness,but her kindness was dishonorable.


    What will you do? What now?


    The only remedy: to die as quickly as I can.

    (Hippolytus storms out of the palace doors, followed closely by the nurse.)


    O Mother Earth, O cleansing Sun,What poison have I heard!


    Hush, child, someone may hear you!

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.



    I have heard horrors! Shall I hold my peace?


    Yes, please, I beg you.


    Get your hands off me! Let go of my clothes!

    NURSEPlease be silent or I shall die!


    Why, if your story is so innocent?


    Not for every ear!


    All ears can hear a truly good tale.

    NURSEYour oath, your oath! You swore your silence to me!

    HIPPOLYTUSSilence of my tongue, but not my mind.

    NURSEWhat will you do? Kill your own kin?


    No sinners are my kin.


    Show some kindness, then! We all make dreadful mistakes.

    HIPPOLYTUSZeus! Why did you bring these despicable creatures

    Into the light of the sun?If to propogate the race, women are the worst way.

    Why couldnt we just pray to you gods, offer you gold in the temples,so you could reward us with sons.

    No need to bring the plague of women into our houses.

    Instead, a woman drains both her father and her husband of their wealth:

    her father with the dowry he shells out to get rid of her,her husband in clothes and jewelry to decorate her.

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    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    That man has it easiest whose wife is a sweet nothing.But I detest the clever ones!

    May there never be a woman in my house with more intelligence than she deserves.

    Cunning Aphrodite, the goddess of night vices,

    plots her schemes through those clever ones.They hatch their wicked plots indoors,

    and send their servants to deliver them.

    Just like that, you come to entice me into the sacred bed of my father.How could I be such a traitor when even the sound of such things disgusts me?

    Ill tell you the truth: my piety has saved you, woman.

    If you had not caught me off guard and snared me into swearing an oath,

    I would tell this whole story to my father.But as things are, while hes away,

    Ill leave the palace and hold my tongue.

    But when he returns, Ill keep an eye on how you look at him,you and your mistress Whether you cringe in shame or hide your wicked schemes in smiles.

    Damn all you women! I shall never stop hating you. (Exits)

    PHAIDRAA womans fate is luckless, ill-starred.

    What craft do we have, what words can we speak,

    that can undo the noose, once we have faltered?I have received what I deserve.

    How shall I escape what has happened,

    how can I hide the painful fact of my mistake, my friends?


    All is over, mistress. The designs of your nurse have failed. All is lost!

    PHAIDRAYou base, degenerate woman! A plague to your friends!

    See what youve done to me!

    May Father Zeus obliterate you root and branch with his thunderbolt!

    Didnt I guess your purpose?Didnt I warn you to say nothing of these things?

    These things that now disgrace me?But you couldnt bear to keep a secret, could you?

    And so I shall die in dishonor.I need a new plan.

    Because Hippolytus, incensed as he is,

    Will repeat to his father all your repugnant words,

    And my name will be slandered across the whole land.Damn you! Damn everyone who forces her unwanted,

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    dishonorable help upon a friend!


    Mistress, to be sure,

    you can find fault with the troubles I have caused you,

    For the sting of them controls your reason.But if youll listen, I can speak in my defense.

    I raised you from a child;

    I want nothing in life but your happiness.

    I tried to remedy your troubles.Instead, I only made them worse.

    But if I had succeeded, you would have thought me wise.

    For we are wise or foolish depending on the outcome of our actions.



    First you stab me in the heart,then try to placate me with words!?


    We are wasting words.

    I admit I went too far.But even now, my child, you can escape with your life.

    PHAIDRANo! No more schemes!

    Your advice was evil, your intentions and actions evil.

    Get out, and fend for yourself.I myself will set my life right.Women of Troizen, grant me this one request:

    Never make known what you have heard and witnessed here.

    LEADERI swear by Artemis, Zeus pure daughter,

    I shall never reveal a word of any of this!

    CHORUSWe swear by Artemis never to reveal a word.


    Thank you. One more thing:I see a way to remedy my troubles

    So that I may bequeath to my sons

    An honorable future,

    And save as much as I can of my own name.I shall never disgrace my Kretan home,

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    Nor shall I face Theseus in shame,

    All to save a single life.


    What can you do now to fix your ruined life?


    I can die. But the way I die is my choice.

    LEADERDont even say it!


    Im through listening to advice.Today, when I have taken my own life,

    Aphrodite shall rejoice, for I have been her sacrifice,

    A victim of her hateful passion.But I will not be the only one to perish.Someone else will learn not to bask in arrogant glory at my misery.

    He will suffer with me and know that fanatical chastity

    Can destroy as surely as unbridled passion.


    CHORUSHide me in some deep cavern, o Gods!

    Make me a long-winged bird within a flying flock!

    Then I would soar above the sea-swellTo the Adriatic shore and the waters of Eridanus,Where luckless girls, grieving for Phathon,

    Shed amber tears into the deep-blue waves.

    I would go my way to the apple-bearing shoreOf the Hesperides, golden-voiced nymphs.

    There the old sea lord forbids all sailors further passage

    And has fixed the limits of the sky,

    Which Atlas carries on his shoulders.There, divine springs flow past the place where Zeus lay,

    And sacred Earth lavishes the Gods with endless gifts.

    O Kretan ship, with your white-winged sails,You ferried your sovereigns daughter, now our Queen,

    Through the storming, foaming sea

    From her blessed home,

    To a festive wedding and a somber life.Evil omens appeared both when she left her glorious homeland

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    And when she reached the shores of Athens.

    Now Phaidras mind is plagued by divine unholy passion,

    Tossed about and drowning in this disease.

    So, from the beams of her bridal bed,

    Shameful of her bitter fate,She will hang the blankets

    Fashioned into a noose,

    Fitting it to her lovely white neck,

    Choosing the glory of a good nameWhich rids her of her torturous desire.

    NURSE (from within the palace)

    Help! Help! Anyone who hears me! The Queen!Theseus' wife, my lady is hanging!

    LEADERIt is finished! Our Queen is dead.

    NURSE (from within the palace)

    Hurry! Fetch a sharp blade and cut her down!


    Friends, what should we do? Shall we go inside and free our lady from the noose?


    Is that wise? Arent there plenty of men servants in the palace?

    Its dangerous to interfere.

    NURSE (from within the palace)

    Let her poor body lie straight! What horrible news awaits my lord on his return.

    CHORUSIts true, then. She is truly gone our poor, sweet lady.

    They are laying out her corpse even now.

    THESEUS (entering)Women, what is the cause of all this shouting?

    I heard it from far off.No one has opened the gates to receive me properly,

    Even though I come from sacred Delphi.

    (Looks around at the chorus, who all avert their eyes)

    Not Pittheus. Not that good, old king!Has Time finally struck him down?

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    Hes old very old I know.

    But what a blow it would be to return and find him gone.


    Theseus, its not the old who have died in their time,

    But the young who are gone too soon.


    No! Not one of my sons!


    They live. But their mother is dead.

    THESEUSWhat? My wife? Dead? How? How did she die?

    LEADERHanged by a noose of her own making.


    But why? What anguish tormented her so? Loneliness?


    This is all we know. We only just arrived, just in time to hear the awful news.

    THESEUS (pausing, remembering the wreath he wears)

    Why then should my head be crowned in leaves!

    This is what the gods grant me for my piousness?Throw open the doors!Let me see my wife, who has taken my life with hers.

    (The great central door of the palace is thrown open wide, and the body of Phaidra is

    brought out on a bier by palace guards, followed by two handmaids, wailing. The guards

    lay her on her couch, which has remained on stage ever since it was first brought out.)


    What have you done, wretched pitiful woman?Such a deed brings this house to ruin.

    What torment wrestled within you,That by your own hand you threw your life away?

    What brought this blackness into your heart?


    Sweet wife, what words can name your fate?

    You have flown away from me like a wild bird,Plummeting in one swift gust to darkest oblivion.

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    The vengeance of the gods has come home to me

    For the sins of some long-forgotten ancestor.


    Sire, you are not all alone in this.

    Many a man has lost a true wife.


    Lay me underground.

    Let the dark earth swallow me, miserable man that I am,Bereft of your sweet voice.

    You have destroyed me, Phaidra, even more than yourself.

    Will I ever know how death stole into your heart?

    Can anyone here tell me exactly what has happened?Or do I shelter a rabble of mute idiots?

    (All are silent.)

    Whats this? This letter hanging from her hand?

    Will it tell me what I long to know?

    Her last words to me of us and our children?

    Rest, rest, sweet Phaidra, no woman shall ever take your place in our bed.Here is her seal. She smiles at me through it.

    Let me open and read it.


    What fresh disaster has the god sent to follow the first?

    I see even more evil on the way!Pity our great King Theseus! Pity him!O kindly Fate! If it is at all possible,

    Spare this house!

    THESEUSOh, horrible... horrible... horrible...


    What is it, your majesty? If I may hear it, speak!

    THESEUSI cannot speak it, though her writing cries aloud at me, shrieks with horror!

    How shall I ever escape the weight of my misfortunes?I am destroyed, utterly destroyed.

    I am no one nothing anymore.

    LEADERAh! Such wild words! What terror do they reveal?

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    THESEUSNo! Agonizing as these words are to utter,

    Yet the gates of my lips

    will hold them back no more ---

    O my city, hear me!Hippolytus has raped my wife, the Queen, in broad daylight,

    Polluting the holy eye of Zeus.

    Hear me, Poseidon, my father:

    You have promised me three curses.If your promise was true,

    Use the first to slay Hippolytus.

    Let him not live out this day!


    By the gods, I beg you, lord! Take back your curse!

    You will soon learn how very wrong you are.Take my advice!


    No, never! And even more, I banish him

    From all my realms. He shall fall by one of two great fates:Either Poseidon shall send him swiftly to the house of Death;

    Or, wandering outcast over foreign soil,

    He shall drain to the dregs a life of misery.


    See! here comes Hippolytus, just in time.Shake off this cruel rage, O King!Do what is best for your house!


    Father, I heard your cry, and Ive come to help you.What happened?

    (He looks around, then sees.)

    No. No, not the Queen dead!?

    I cant believe it.I left her only a while ago, looking on the light of day.

    How did this happen? How did she die?Tell me, Father.

    Why are you silent?

    Silence has no power to banish sorrow.You should not hide your suffering from friends,

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    Much less from family.


    Foolish race of men, blindly striving.

    You discover numberless arts and invent all manner of things

    But one thing youve neither reached for nor understood:How to make fools wise!


    I agree completely.But why this subtle talk? It seems your sorrows

    Have made your tongue run wild.

    THESEUSO, if only Zeus had given us here below

    Some test of love, some sifting of the soul,

    To tell the false from the true! Or that each manShould have two voices: one true and right,The other as chance would have it;

    So that the voice that spoke lies would be

    Convicted by the true man's voice,

    And none would ever be deceived!


    Why are you saying this?Has some false friend of yours whispered slanders in your ear?

    Do I stand accused before you, though perfectly innocent?

    Im amazed that you utter such senseless words.


    O, the heart of man, how far will it go?

    Is there no limit to its audacity?

    Look at this man my own son Sprung from my very loins!

    He has violated my wife;

    And by her own lifeless hand

    stands here convicted of this evil.

    No, dont hide your face!Look into your fathers eyes again,

    Theyre already polluted from looking at you.Companion of the gods, are you?

    Virgin pure, are you? Untouched by evil?

    Say all you want, Ill never believe you.

    The gods are not so foolish.Boast that you eat no meat, that you have been

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    Initiated into mystic rites.

    But I have found you out!Listen, all of you!

    Beware this man and those like him!

    They drone on and on about their holiness, but plot wicked deeds.

    She is dead. Do you think this will save you?No, it serves to convict you.

    What oaths, what arguments, can refute her dead body

    And win your acquittal?

    Will you claim she hated you,that the bastard is always thought the enemy of the true-born?

    You really think she would trade her own life,

    the thing most precious to her,

    merely to satisfy her hatred for you?But why should I consider any argument of yours

    When the witness most reliable, her lifeless body, lies right here?

    Therefore, hear my solemn decree:I banish you from this land of Troizenand from the god-built city of Athens

    and from any land ruled by my spear!

    HIPPOLYTUSFather, the fury of your heart is terrible.

    Yet, though you think your argument is unshakeable,

    if all this matter were examined closely,Your words would not persuade.

    I have no skill to speak before a crowd.I converse best with a few friends.Yet, since you have accused me so unjustly,

    I must speak out in my defense.

    Though you deny it, there is no manUpon this sunlit earth, more chaste than I.

    By one thing Im untouched,

    the very thing of which you think you have convicted me:

    To this very moment, my body is unpolluted by sex.I know nothing of the act but by hearsay and in paintings,

    which I dont care to look at, since my soul is pure.

    But say you dont believe my chastity.Show me then how I was corrupted.

    Was she more beautiful than any other woman?

    Did I hope, by taking a queen for a mistress,

    That I would rise to the throne?What nonsense! Im not such a fool.

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    I want nothing of kingly power,

    which corrupts even the most virtuous.My only ambition is to win first prize in the Hellenic games.

    One more point: if I had a witness to my character,

    If I pleaded my case while she was still alive,And if you investigated this matter carefully,

    you would discover who is really the guilty one.

    As things stand, I swear by Zeus, the god of oaths,

    And by the earth beneath me:I never touched your wife, never wished to, never even thought of it.

    May I perish with no name or reputation, homeless, exiled.

    May neither sea nor earth receive my lifeless body if Im guilty!

    What fear made her take her life, I cannot say.But she died with virtue, though she wasnt virtuous.

    I, who am virtuous, have only hurt myself in practicing it.

    LEADERYour great oath in the name of Zeus is enough to rebutt the charge.


    Isnt he the charlatan and spell-caster?Confident his cool conniving will tame my anger,

    the righteous anger of his dishonored father.


    I marvel at you, Father.

    If I were your father and you were my son,And if you had dared to touch my wife,I wouldnt have banished you. Id have killed you.


    Swift death is bliss to men in misery.Far off, friendless forever, amid strange cities

    you shall drain to the last the dregs of pain!

    HIPPOLYTUSWhat will you do?

    Banish me now and not even wait for time to prove me innocent?

    THESEUSYes! If I could, I would drive you beyond the edges of the earth,

    past the Black Sea, the Pillars of Herakles if I had the power!

    So much do I hate you!


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    Will you dismiss my oath and sworn testimony,

    dismiss the oracles interpreted by prophets?Will you banish me without a trial?


    This letter here is your trial, more than any foolish oracle.


    O great gods, why dont I open my mouth and save myself,

    Seeing that you are killing me through the very piety I show you?But no, its no use.

    I wouldnt convince my father

    and I would break the oath I swore for nothing.


    Oh, Im sick to death with your false piety!

    Get out! Get out of this land! Go!


    Go? Where shall I go? Who will take me in?

    THESEUSWhoever entertain seducers of their wives and plotters of evil in their homes.

    HIPPOLYTUSIf only this house could speak for me,

    and bear witness whether I am base or not.

    THESEUSGo ahead, take refuge in mute witnesses,

    while the silent facts convict you.


    If I could only stand aside to see my face,

    so I could weep for the anguish I suffer!


    You are more well practiced in regarding yourselfthan in respecting your parents.


    O, my unhappy Mother! O, my shameful birth!

    May no one I love ever live the life of a bastard!

    THESEUS (enraged at this last remark)

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    Guards! Drag him from my presence!

    Or didnt you hear me proclaim him exiled?


    If any of you touch me, youll regret it.

    (To Theseus) You do it.You carry me from this land, if you have the heart.


    I will, if you disobey my command!My heart is not moved to pity by your exile. (Exits)

    (Guards carry the body of Phaidra back to the palace through the central doors.)


    My fate, it seems, is fixed.

    How cursed I am,who know the truth but cannot reveal it.Daughter of Leto, dearest of all the gods to me,

    you are with me when I hunt, you are with me when I rest,

    Now I will never return to glorious Athens.

    And I am exiled even from Troizen and the land of Erechtheus.Troizen, what joy you brought to a growing boy!

    Goodbye: I look on you and speak to you for the last time.

    Come, my Troizenian friends, bid me farewell and speed me to the frontier!

    You will never know a man more innocent in every way than I,

    even though my father doesnt think so. (Exits)


    Believing that the gods care for us soothes my mind,

    But when I begin to doubt and wish to know for certain,

    What I see in peoples lives shows just the opposite.One thing after another our lives are thrown this way and that,

    Perpetually trembling.

    O, if only the gods would hear my prayers, grant my requests:Sweet prosperity and a heart that never knows sorrow.

    With a mind neither stubborn nor false,but pliant and adaptable to every days needs,

    May I know happiness all my life.

    But now my mind is disturbed:

    Im seeing things I never dreamed would be.

    A raging father has driven Athens brightest starFar from his homeland

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    Far from the sands of the city shore,

    Far from the mountain forests where he and his swift hounds,guided by divine Artemis, pursued and slew wild beasts.

    Hippolytus, youll never again race your fiery team of Venetian stallions.

    The music of the lyre, that never slept in your fathers house, shall cease.The shaded green meadows where Artemis sleeps

    Will no longer be filled with your garlands of wildflowers.

    Because of your exile, maidens will no longer battle to be your bride.

    And my fast-flowing tears for you shall never end.O unhappy mother, giving birth to him was all in vain.

    O, you gods! You infuriate me!

    O Graces, why do you drive him from his fathers house and lands,

    this poor man, guilty of no crime?


    Look, I see a servant of Hippolytus,Breathless, horror-struck, rushing toward the house!


    Women, where must I go to find

    King Theseus? Is he here? Speak!


    Here he comes now out of the palace.


    O King, I bring grave news to youand all the citizens of Troizen and Athens.


    What is it? Has some disaster struck these neighboring cities?


    Hippolytus is near death. His life hangs on by a slender thread.

    THESEUSHow? Some outraged husband whose wife he ravished?


    His own team of horses, gone wild, destroyed him.And the curse you prayed your Sea-Lord father

    call down upon him.


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    You heard my prayer; you truly are my father, after all.

    How did he die? Tell me! How did the hammer of justiceCome down on him for dishonoring me?


    We were grooming the horses near the wave-beaten shoreand weeping at our task, because word had come

    that Hippolytus would no longer walk this land,

    that you had cast him into exile.

    Then he came, his voice trembling with the news,

    joined us at the shore, and a countless throng of friends came alongside.

    After some time had passed, he stopped his sobbing and said,

    Why do I carry on like this? I must obey my fathers command.Men, yoke my horses to the chariot, Troizen is no longer my city.

    Thereupon, every man worked in haste,and more quickly than one could describe,we set the horses in their gear beside their master.

    He took the reins from the chariot rail

    and set his feet into place.

    First he spread his hands palms upwards

    in prayer to the gods and said,

    O Zeus, may I no longer live if I am guilty!But whether I am dead or look on the light,

    may my father come to know that he has done me wrong!

    So saying, he took the whip into his handand cracked it against the horses flanks.

    We servants trotted beside the chariot, even with the reins,

    Along the road to Argos and Epidaurus.

    When we struck deserted country,

    there is a headland beyond our territory,

    lying out towards what is, at that point, the Saronic Gulf.

    There, a great noise in the earth, like Zeus thundering, roared mightily it made one shudder to hear it!

    The horses pricked up their ears,and all the men were taken with a violent fear,

    wondering where this sound came from.When we turned our eyes to the sea-beaten beach,

    we saw an unearthly wave, its peak fixed in the heavens,

    so great that we could not see Skirons coast,

    and the Isthmus and Asclepius rock as well were hidden from view.

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    And then, as the sea-surge swelled with massive foam,

    it came toward the shore, heading straight for the chariot.When it peaked, the wave threw up a monstrous, savage bull.

    It bellowed fiercely and the whole land echoed its ear-shattering roar

    To look upon it was more than our eyes could bear.

    At this, the horses panicked.My master, long skilled in the ways of horses,

    seized the reins in his hands and pulled, as a sailor pulls an oar,

    letting his body hang backwards from the straps.

    But the horses took the fire-forged bit in their teeth and carried him against his will,taking no notice of the harness or the weight of the chariot.

    Whenever he tried to steer the horses toward softer ground,

    the bull appeared before them to turn them back, maddening them with fear.But if, in their frenzy, they rushed toward the rocks,

    the bull came galloping beside the chariot

    until finally it upset and capsized it,smashing the wheel rims on a rock.

    Then all was confusion: wheel hubs and axle pins leapt in the air,

    Hippolytus, tangled in the reins, was dragged along,

    his head smashing against the rocks, his flesh tearing,while he cried out words terrible to hear:

    Stop, horses! I raised you in my own stables! Stop! Dont drag me to my death!

    O, my fathers curse! Help me! Will no man come to save me? I am innocent!

    Many of us tried but we could not keep pace with the chariot.

    Somehow, he came loose from the reins, and fell to the ground,with scarcely any breath still in him.The horses vanished somewhere in the rocky ground, and so did the monstrous bull.

    My lord, I know I am only a slave in your house,

    but I shall never believe your son is guilty,not even if the whole female sex should hang themselves

    and use every pine tree on Mount Ida to write their suicide notes.

    I know he is a good man.


    Ah! new disaster has come to pass!Theres no escape from destiny and fate!


    My hatred for him at first filled me with joy to hear your story.

    But now, fearing the gods and pitying him my son, after all

    your story no longer pleases me, although I cannot grieve either.

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    What shall we do now? Shall we bring him here to you?Consider it seriously, my Lord. If youll take my advice,

    you wont deal harshly with your dying son.

    THESEUSYes, bring him to me, so I can look him in the face,

    this man who denies he raped my wife.

    My words and his impending fate will prove him a liar.

    (Messenger exits.)

    CHORUS (to the statue of Aphrodite)

    Aphrodite, you capture the unbending hearts of the gods and of men,and with you, surrounding you with his brilliant plumage,

    is Eros, Desire, with his huge and swift wings.

    He flies over all the earth and over the loud-roaring salt sea;He bewitches whoever and whatever he targets with a frenzied passion:The beasts of the mountains, the fish of the sea,

    What the earth brings forth, what the blazing sun warms,

    Likewise all mortals:

    Aphrodite, you have power over all these!

    ARTEMIS (suddenly appearing)

    Hear me, high born son of Aegeus!Hear the words of Artemis, the daughter of Leto!

    How can you take joy in these things, you despicable man?!

    Youre a shameful murderer of your own son,Deluded by your wifes lies.But the ruin you have caused is all too true.

    Go hide yourself in shame within the bowels of the earth!

    Or change into a bird and fly from the pain that awaits you!

    There is no room for you anymore among good men.

    Theseus, listen while I tell you the depths of your wretched state.

    This does me no good and will only make you suffer more.

    But this is why I have come: to prove your son is innocentSo that he may die with his good name.

    Make plain, too, the maddened frenzy of your wife,and even her nobility and virtue.

    She was stung by Aphrodite with lust for your son.She tried to contain her moist aching through will alone

    And her nurse, unwittingly, destroyed her.

    This nurse first swore Hippolytus to secrecy,

    and then confessed Phaidras passion for him.Rightly, he did not fall in with her desires,

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    Nor did he ever break his oath, noble man that he is,

    No matter how fiercely you reviled him.Phaidra, fearing her dark secret would be revealed,

    Wrote the lies that sparked your rage to kill your son.

    Does that sting, Theseus? Then be quiet so you can hear and suffer more.You were given the gift of three curses by your father, sure of their fulfillment.

    You used the first one against your son, a curse better used against an enemy.

    Your father, Sea-Lord Poseidon, honor-bound, made good his promise.

    But you debased yourself in his eyes and mine!You did not wait for any proof or confirmation,

    no prophets words, not even the time to investigate.

    No, you instantly lashed out with this curse and killed your son.


    O Goddess, let me die!

    ARTEMISNo, Theseus. You have done dreadful things,

    But in spite of this, you may still be pardoned from them.

    Aphrodite, seeking vengeance, made all this happen.

    And such is the custom of the gods:None of us will cross the will of another.

    We all stand aside.

    You can be sure that if I did not fear the anger of Zeus,I would never have allowed the I man love most among mortals to die.

    You are guilty of ignorance, not evil.

    Phaidras suicide blinded you even from pursuing the truth.You bear the brunt of this calamity, but I grieve as well.Gods never joy in the death of their devotees,

    But we destroy the wicked children, house and all.

    CHORUSLook, he approaches, head and body battered and broken!

    A double agony sent from the gods rattles the walls of this house!

    (Hippolytus enters, aided by two fellow hunters.)

    HIPPOLYTUSAhhhh! Gently, men, gently!

    Handle my mangled body gently!You, on my right side, let me lean on you lightly.

    You see me here, Zeus, the victim of my fathers curse!

    I who lived my life chaste, purer than any man on earth.

    And now I go to my death.What good has been all my piety?

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    Where are the fruits of all my sacred devotion now?

    Stop! Let me rest! (delirious, screams with pain) Ahhhhhhhh!

    My demon horses!

    I fed you from my own hand, raised you from birth,

    And you have destroyed me, dragged me to my death!Why me? Why did this happen to me, who am innocent of any sin?

    It must be that Im paying for the bloodguilt of a distant ancestor.

    A most unjust penalty!

    What more can I say in my defense?Its too late, too late.

    O, this agony is unbearable! Ahhh!

    Have mercy upon me!

    Run me through me with a spearAnd bring me a healing death.

    (Attendants carry and place him on Phaidras couch)


    Poor man, what a miserable fate was yours,

    Your own noble nature ruined you.


    Ah! Heavenly fragrance! You soothe my pain.

    Divine Artemis is here.


    She is, poor soul, the deity most dear to you.


    Do you see me here, my lady, at the gates of death?

    ARTEMISYes, and I would weep for you, if only Gods could weep.


    You are losing your hunter and your servant.

    ARTEMISYou die, but my love for you is eternal.


    Who will race your horses and honor your shrine?

    ARTEMISNo one. Aphrodites malicious fury brought you down.

  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides


    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.


    HIPPOLYTUSHer? So this is the deity who destroyed me.


    Your chastity incensed her. You scorned her, and she retaliated.


    I see her vengeance has destroyed three of us.


    Yes, three your father, his Queen and you.

    HIPPOLYTUSNow I pity my poor father.

    ARTEMISAphrodite trapped him in her net.


    Father, how much you must be suffering!


    My life is over, son. All joy is gone.


    I pity you more than myself; your mistake will never leave you.

    THESEUSIf only I could die in your place!


    Poseidon's gifts what bitter poison they were to you!


    If only that curse had never left my lips!


    You still would have killed me, you were so angry.

    THESEUSYes, a divine power blinded me!


    If only mortals could curse the gods!

  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides


    Hippolytus by Euripides, translated by Robert Gonzalez. 2012 by Robert Gonzalez. All Rights Reserved.



    Hush! Let go of your anger, child!Though the underworld gloom will soon cover you,

    I will avenge you.

    I will take down the mortal whom Aphrodite loves best with this very bow of mine.

    But you will be honored in this land of Troizen forever.Virgins before their marriage will cut their hair for you,

    And for centuries your memory will harvest their copious tears.

    Those girls will sing forever of the love that Phaidra had for you.

    Now, Theseus, embrace your son, draw him near.

    You acted blindly and rashly, controlled by divine power.

    Hippolytus, I tell you: dont hate your father.

    It was your fate to die this way.And now I leave you, for gods cannot look upon the dead

    Or stain ourselves with sight of dying breath,

    Which you are fast approaching.Farewell.

    (Artemis is gone.)

    HIPPOLYTUSFarewell, divine one!

    How easily you take your leave of me, your longtime lover.

    Yet I still obey you, as I always have: I forgive you, father.O, my eyes go dark.

    Father, take me up, lay my body straight.

    THESEUSMy son, what are you doing to me?


    I see the Great Gates open.


    Will you leave me with blood-soaked hands?


    No, never. You didnt murder me. Youre innocent.

    THESEUSYoure setting me free of murder?


    Yes, by the Virgin Goddess I adore!

  • 7/30/2019 Hippolytus, by Euripides




    Now I see how noble you are, my son!


    Pray then that your true-born sons may fill my place.


    Must I lose you now, just when I know you best?!

    HIPPOLYTUSGoodbye, my father! May you once again have joy in life.


    Dont leave me yet! Stay with me just a little longer. Fight for your life!


    My fightings done, Father. I ... am ... gone.


    O mighty Athens,

    What a great man you have lost today!

    I am the most miserable of men.Aphrodite, I will never forget the anguish you have brought me!

    CHORUSThis abrupt and startling disaster

    has devastated every citizen of this land.

    Our tears will flow for countless yearsFor the sorrowful tales of the great and mighty move us most.