Chariton, Callirhoe

LCL 481: 190-191

Go To Section
Go To Section



1. Ταύτην μὲν οὖν τὴν νύκτα Καλλιρόη διῆγεν ἐν θρήνοις, Χαιρέαν ἔτι ζῶντα πενθοῦσα· μικρὸν δὲ καταδραθεῖσα ὄναρ ἑώρα λῃστήριον βαρβάρων πῦρ ἐπιφέροντας, ἐμπιπραμένην δὲ τριήρη, Χαιρέᾳ δὲ 2βοηθοῦσαν ἑαυτήν. ὁ δὲ Διονύσιος ἐλυπεῖτο μὲν ὁρῶν τρυχομένην τὴν γυναῖκα, μὴ ἄρα τι καὶ τοῦ κάλλους αὐτῇ παραπόληται, λυσιτελεῖν δὲ ὑπελάμβανεν εἰς τὸν ἴδιον ἔρωτα τὸν πρότερον ἄνδρα βεβαίως αὐτὴν 3ἀπογνῶναι. θέλων οὖν ἐνδείξασθαι στοργὴν καὶ μεγαλοψυχίαν ἔφη πρὸς αὐτὴν “ἀνάστηθι, ὦ γύναι, καὶ τάφον κατασκεύασον τῷ ταλαιπώρῳ. τί τὰ μὲν ἀδύνατα σπεύδεις, ἀμελεῖς δὲ τῶν ἀναγκαίων; νόμιζε ἐφεστηκότα σοι λέγειν αὐτὸν

‘θάπτε με, ὅττι τάχιστα πύλας Ἀΐδαο περήσω.’

καὶ γὰρ εἰ μὴ τὸ σῶμα εὕρηται τοῦ δυστυχοῦς, ἀλλὰ νόμος οὗτος ἀρχαῖος Ἑλλήνων, ὥστε καὶ τοὺς ἀφανεῖς τάφοις κοσμεῖν.” 4Ἔπεισε ταχέως, τὸ γὰρ πρὸς ἡδονὴν εἶχεν ἡ συμβουλία. φροντίδος οὖν ἐμπεσούσης ἐλώφησεν ἡ λύπη,


Book 4.1

Book 4

1. So Callirhoe spent that night in lamentation, mourning for Chaereas who was still alive. But briefly dozing she dreamed that she saw a host of oriental brigands with torches setting the warship on fire, while she herself tried to help Chaereas. Although Dionysius was sorry to see his wife in such distress, fearing also that her beauty might be impaired, still he considered that his own love would benefit if she gave up all hope of her former husband. So, wishing to demonstrate his affection and magnanimity, he said to her, “Get up, my dear, and build a tomb for the poor boy. Why hanker after the impossible, and neglect the things you have to do? Imagine him at your side and saying,

‘bury me that at once I may enter the portals of Hades.’1

Even though the unhappy man’s body has not been found, it is an old Greek custom to honor with a tomb even those who are missing.”

He soon persuaded her, for the advice was to her liking. As the thought took hold, her grief abated, and getting up

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.chariton-callirhoe.1995