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Ovid

dicta Iovis firmat: gravius Saturnia iusto nec pro materia fertur doluisse suique 335iudicis aeterna damnavit lumina nocte; at pater omnipotens (neque enim licet inrita cuiquam facta dei fecisse deo) pro lumine adempto scire futura dedit poenamque levavit honore. Ille per Aonias fama celeberrimus urbes 340inreprehensa dabat populo responsa petenti; prima fide vocisque ratae temptamina sumpsit caerula Liriope, quam quondam flumine curvo inplicuit clausaeque suis Cephisos in undis vim tulit: enixa est utero pulcherrima pleno 345infantem nymphe, iam tunc qui posset amari, Narcissumque vocat. de quo consultus, an esset tempora maturae visurus longa senectae, fatidicus vates “si se non noverit” inquit. vana diu visa est vox auguris: exitus illam 350resque probat letique genus novitasque furoris. namque ter ad quinos unum Cephisius annum addiderat poteratque puer iuvenisque videri: multi illum iuvenes, multae cupiere puellae; sed fuit in tenera tam dura superbia forma, 355nulli illum iuvenes, nullae tetigere puellae. adspicit hunc trepidos agitantem in retia cervos vocalis nymphe, quae nec reticere loquenti nec prior ipsa loqui didicit, resonabilis Echo. Corpus adhuc Echo, non vox erat et tamen usum garrula non alium, quam nunc habet, oris habebat, 361reddere de multis ut verba novissima posset. fecerat hoc Iuno, quia, cum deprendere posset

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Metamorphoses Book III

the gods, took sides with Jove. Saturnia, they say, grieved more deeply than she should and than the issue warranted, and condemned the arbitrator to perpetual blindness. But the Almighty Father (for no god may undo what another god has done) in return for his loss of sight gave Tiresias the power to know the future, lightening the penalty by the honour.

He, famed far and near through all the Boeotian towns, gave answers that none could censure to those who sought his aid. The first to make trial of his truth and assured utterances was the nymph, Liriope, whom once the river-god, Cephisus, embraced in his winding stream and ravished, while imprisoned in his waters. When her time came the beauteous nymph brought forth a child, whom a nymph might love even as a child, and named him Narcissus. When asked whether this child would live to reach well-ripened age, the seer replied: “If he ne’er know himself.” Long did the saying of the prophet seem but empty words. But what befell proved its truth—the event, the manner of his death, the strangeness of his infatuation. For Narcissus had reached his sixteenth year and might seem either boy or man. Many youths and many maidens sought his love; but in that slender form was pride so cold that no youth, no maiden touched his heart. Once as he was driving the frightened deer into his nets, a certain nymph of strange speech beheld him, resounding Echo, who could neither hold her peace when others spoke, nor yet begin to speak till others had addressed her.

Up to this time Echo had form and was not a voice alone; and yet, though talkative, she had no other use of speech than now—only the power out of many words to repeat the last she heard. Juno had made her thus; for often when she might have

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.ovid-metamorphoses.1916