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For evil news rides post, while good news baits.
And to our wish I see one hither speeding;
A Hebrew, as I guess, and of our tribe.

1540

MESSENGER.

Oh, whither shall I run, or which way fly
The sight of this so horrid spectacle,
Which erst my eyes beheld, and yet behold?
For dire imagination still pursues me.
But providence or instinct of nature seems,
Or reason, though disturbed, and scarce consulted,
To have guided me aright, I know not how,
To thee first, reverend Manoah, and to these
My countrymen, whom here I knew remaining,
As at some distance from the place of horror,
So in the sad event too much concerned.

1550

MANOAH.

The accident was loud, and here before thee
With rueful cry, yet what it was we hear not.
No preface needs, thou seest we long to know,

MESSENGER.

It would burst forth, but I recover breath

χρόνια τα τερπνά, το δε κακόν ταχύπτερον. . προσέρχεται δ' Εβραίος, εικάσαι γ' εμέ, ομόφυλος ημίν, καίριός τε συντυχών.

ΑΓΓΕΛΟΣ. φεύ, φεύ, τίς άν μοι, που δραμόντι, καταφυγή γένοιτ' άν, ώστε μη τα τλημoνέστατα ιδείν, ιδών γάρ διατελώ λεύσσων έτι τα συντυχόντα, περιφόβω φαντάσματα; iбio αλλ', είτ' άρ' ήν το θείον, ή τα της φύσεως, είτ' αυ το φρόνιμοναλλά σύμβουλος μόγις τόδ' ήν ελέσθαι, κάρτα παράκοπον φρενώνουκ οίδ' όπως, δεύρ' ήλθον εύπλοίας τυχών, κιχεϊν σε πρώτον, τον μάλ' αιδοίον, Μάνως, και τους πολίτας, ενθάδ' ους ήπιστάμην μένοντας, ου μεν έμφόβων πέλας τόπων, αλλ' οίς υπέρφευ των πεπραγμένων μέλει.

ΜΑΝΩΣ. σε μέν κτύπω φθάσαντα και λυγρό στόνω ισμεν τα συμβεβηκόθ', οία δ' έστιν, ού.

1620 μαθείν προθύμοις, ου τι φροιμίου σε δεί.

ΑΓΓΕΛΟΣ. ουδ' ήν στέγειν τάδ', αλλά μ' αμπνεύσαι χρεών

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And sense distract, to know well what I utter

MANOAH.

Tell us the sum, the circumstance defer.

MESSENGER
Gaza yet stands, but all her sons are fallen,
All in a moment overwhelmed and fallen.

MANOAH.

1560

Sad; but thou knowest to Israelites not saddest
The desolation of a hostile city.

MESSENGER.

Feed on that first, there may in grief be surfeit.

MANOAH.

Relate by whom.

MESSENGER.

By Samson.

MANOAH.

That still lessens

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The sorrow, and converts it nigh to joy.

MESSENGER.
Ah, Manoah, I refrain too suddenly
To utter what will come at last too soon;
Lest evil tidings, with too rude irruption
Hitting thy aged ear, should pierce too deep.

τον νούν τ' ανορθούν, ώστε τακριβή λέγειν.

ΜΑΝΩΣ. αλλ' άμβαλών έκαστα, το ξύμπαν φράσον.

ΑΓΓΕΛΟΣ. Γάζην έτ' ουσαν, τους δε Γαζίτας λέγω ξυνολωλότας τους πάντας εν βραχεί χρόνο.

ΜΑΝΩΣ. άλγεινά γ', άλλ' ου τοίσιν Εβραίοις τάδε άλγιστα, την εχθρών τιν' εκπέρσαι πόλιν.

ΑΓΓΕΛΟΣ. περίσσαν ήν τάντεύθεν αρκείτω τόδε.

ΜΑΝΩΣ. τίνος δε τούργον ;

ΑΓΓΕΛΟΣ.
τουδ' ος εκπέφυκε σου.

ΜΑΝΩΣ.
σχεδόν χαρά μου, διάδοχος λύπης, πάρα.

ΑΓΓΕΛΟΣ. Μάνως, μάλ' άκων αν διηγοίμην τάχος ο και χρονισθεν κάρτ' άωρον έρχεται και γαρ γεραια προσβολαίς κακαγγέλοις βλάψαιμ' άν ώτα, διατόρω κνίσας φόβω,

1630

MANOAH.
Suspense in news is torture, speak them out.

MESSENGER.
Take then the worst in brief, Samson is dead.

1570

MANOAH.

The worst indeed! Oh, all my hopes defeated
To free him hence! but Death who sets all free
Hath paid his ransom now and full discharge.
What windy joy this day had I conceived,
Hopeful of his delivery, which now proves
Abortive, as the first-born bloom of spring
Nipt with the lagging rear of winter's frost !
Yeț, ere I give the reins to grief, say first
How died he; death to life is crown or shame.
All by him fell, thou sayest; by whom fell he? 1580
What glorious hand gave Samson his death's wound?

MESSENGER.

Unwounded of his enemies he fell.

MANOAH.

Wearied with slaughter then, or how? explain.

MESSENGER.

By his own hands.

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