Aristophanes, Women at the Thesmophoria

LCL 179: 542-543

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ἔσται γυναιξὶ καὶ βροτοῖς ὅτι τὰ παράνομα τά τ᾿ ἀνόσια 685παραχρῆμ᾿ ἀποτίνεται θεός.


ἀλλ᾿ ἔοιχ᾿ ἡμῖν ἅπαντά πως διεσκέφθαι καλῶς. οὐχ ὁρῶμεν γοῦν ἔτ᾿ ἄλλον οὐδέν᾿ ἐγκαθήμενον.


ἆ ἆ. ποῖ ποῖ σὺ φεύγεις; οὗτος οὗτος, οὐ μενεῖς; 690τάλαιν᾿ ἐγώ, τάλαινα, καὶ τὸ παιδίον ἐξαρπάσας μοι φροῦδος ἀπὸ τοῦ τιτθίου.


κέκραχθι. τοῦτο δ᾿ οὐδέποτε σὺ ψωμιεῖς, ἢν μή μ᾿ ἀφῆτ᾿· ἀλλ᾿ ἐνθάδ᾿ ἐπὶ τῶν μηρίων πληγὲν μαχαίρᾳ τῇδε φοινίας φλέβας καθαιματώσει βωμόν.


695ὦ τάλαιν᾿ ἐγώ. γυναῖκες, οὐκ ἀρήξετ᾿; οὐ πολλὴν βοὴν στήσεσθε καὶ τροπαῖον, ἀλλὰ τοῦ μόνου τέκνου με περιόψεσθ᾿ ἀποστερουμένην;


ἔα ἔα. 700ὦ πότνιαι Μοῖραι, τί τόδε δέρκομαι νεοχμὸν αὖ τέρας;

  • 685παραχρῆμ᾿ ἀποτίνεται θέος Henderson: θεὸς ἀποτίνεσται· παραχρῆμά τε τίνεται R

Women at the Thesmophoria

for all women and mortals to see that lawlessness and sacrilege are punished on the spot by god!

chorus leader

Well, we seem to have given everything a thorough inspection, and we don’t see any other man lurking hereabouts.

Kinsman seizes Mica’s baby and runs to the altar in the orchestra. 48

Hey! Hey! Where do you think you’re going? Stop, you! Stop, won’t you? Good grief, oh my, he’s even gone and snatched my baby right from the tit!


Scream away! You’ll never feed it again if you don’t let me go! Nay, here and now, smitten to his crimson veins by this bodkin atop the thigh bones, shall he begore the altar!


Good grief! Women, please help! Please raise a great war cry and a victory trophy, and not look aside as I am bereft of my only child!


Ah! Ah! August Fates, what novel horror is this that I behold?

  • 48See 466 n.
DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.aristophanes-women_thesmophoria.2000