Bion, Lament for Adonis

LCL 28: 506-507

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Αἰάζω τὸν Ἄδωνιν, “ἀπώλετο καλὸς Ἄδωνις”· “ὤλετο καλὸς Ἄδωνις,” ἐπαιάζουσιν Ἔρωτες.

μηκέτι πορφυρέοις ἐνὶ φάρεσι Κύπρι κάθευδε· ἔγρεο, δειλαία, κυανόστολα καὶ πλατάγησον 5στήθεα καὶ λέγε πᾶσιν, “ἀπώλετο καλὸς Ἄδωνις.”

αἰάζω τὸν Ἄδωνιν· ἐπαιάζουσιν Ἔρωτες.

κεῖται καλὸς Ἄδωνις ἐν ὤρεσι μηρὸν ὀδόντι, λευκῷ λευκὸν ὀδόντι τυπείς, καὶ Κύπριν ἀνιῇ λεπτὸν ἀποψύχων· τὸ δέ οἱ μέλαν εἴβεται αἷμα 10χιονέας κατὰ σαρκός, ὑπ’ ὀφρύσι δ’ ὄμματα ναρκῇ, καὶ τὸ ῥόδον φεύγει τῶ χείλεος· ἀμφὶ δὲ τήνῳ θνᾴσκει καὶ τὸ φίλημα, τὸ μήποτε Κύπρις ἀποίσει. Κύπριδι μὲν τὸ φίλημα καὶ οὐ ζώοντος ἀρέσκει, ἀλλ’ οὐκ οἶδεν Ἄδωνις ὅ νιν θνᾴσκοντα φίλησεν.

αἰάζω τὸν Ἄδωνιν· ἐπαιάζουσιν Ἔρωτες.

ἄγριον ἄγριον ἕλκος ἔχει κατὰ μηρὸν Ἄδωνις, μεῖζον δ’ ἁ Κυθέρεια φέρει ποτικάρδιον ἕλκος.

  • 4 κυανόστολα Wilamowitz: -στόλε M
  • 7 ἐν Ameis: ἐπ’ M



I wail for Adonis: “Fair Adonis is dead.” “Fair Adonis is dead,” wail the Loves in answer.

Sleep no more in your purple sheets, Cypris: rouse yourself, unhappy goddess, and beat your breast robed in black, and say to everyone, “Fair Adonis is dead.”

I wail for Adonis; the Loves wail in answer. Fair Adonis lies on the hills, wounded in his thigh with a tusk, wounded in his white thigh with a white tusk, and he grieves Cypris as he breathes his last faint breath. His dark blood drips over his snow-white flesh, and under his brows his eyes grow dim; the rosy hue flees from his lip, and around it dies the kiss, too, which Cypris will never carry off again.1 Even when he is not alive his kiss pleases Cypris; but Adonis does not know that she kissed him when he was dead.

I wail for Adonis; the Loves wail in answer. Adonis has a cruel, cruel wound in his thigh; but greater is the wound Cytherea2 has in her heart. Around that boy his own

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.bion-lament_adonis.2015