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τῆνον μὲν περὶ παῖδα φίλοι κύνες ὠρύονται καὶ Νύμφαι κλαίουσιν Ὀρειάδες· ἁ δ’ Ἀφροδίτα 20λυσαμένα πλοκαμῖδας ἀνὰ δρυμὼς ἀλάληται πενθαλέα νήπλεκτος ἀσάνδαλος, αἱ δὲ βάτοι νιν ἐρχομέναν κείροντι καὶ ἱερὸν αἷμα δρέπονται· ὀξὺ δὲ κωκύοισα δι’ ἄγκεα μακρὰ φορεῖται Ἀσσύριον βοόωσα πόσιν, καὶ πολλὰ καλεῦσα. 25ἀμφὶ δέ νιν μέλαν αἷμα παρ’ ὀμφαλὸν ᾀωρεῖτο, στήθεα δ’ ἐκ μηρῶν φοινίσσετο, τοὶ δ’ ὑπὸ μαζοί χιόνεοι τὸ πάροιθεν Ἀδώνιδι πορφύροντο.

“αἰαῖ τὰν Κυθέρειαν,” ἐπαιάζουσιν Ἔρωτες.

ὤλεσε τὸν καλὸν ἄνδρα, σὺν ὤλεσεν ἱερὸν εἶδος. 30Κύπριδι μὲν καλὸν εἶδος ὅτε ζώεσκεν Ἄδωνις, κάτθανε δ’ ἁ μορφὰ σὺν Ἀδώνιδι. “τὰν Κύπριν αἰαῖ” ὤρεα πάντα λέγοντι, καὶ αἱ δρύες “αἲ τὸν Ἄδωνιν”· καὶ ποταμοὶ κλαίοντι τὰ πένθεα τᾶς Ἀφροδίτας, καὶ παγαὶ τὸν Ἄδωνιν ἐν ὤρεσι δακρύοντι,

  • 18 ὠρύονται Hermann (ὠρύσαντο iam m): ὠδύραντο M
  • 24 πολλὰ Hermann: παῖδα M
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LAMENT FOR ADONIS

hounds howl and the mountain nymphs weep;3 but Aphrodite, her tresses loosed, roams grief-stricken among the thickets with her hair unbraided, barefoot;4 the brambles tear her as she goes and draw her sacred blood.5 Wailing loudly, she moves through the long glens, crying out for her Assyrian husband and calling him many times.6 But round his navel was floating the dark blood, and his chest grew red with blood from his thighs, and Adonis’ breasts, once snow-white, grew dark.7

“Woe for Cytherea,” wail the Loves in answer. She has lost her handsome lord, and with him she has lost her holy beauty. Cypris had beauty when Adonis was living, but her loveliness died with Adonis. “Woe for Cypris,” say all the hills, and the oaks say, “Woe for Adonis.”8 The rivers lament Aphrodite’s suffering, the springs in the hills are weeping for Adonis, from grief the flowers turn red,9 and

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.bion-lament_adonis.2015