The Glory That Was Greece

heart,
To the sway of a rival power give place,
To the love-light flashed from a fair bride’s eyes:
In her triumph laughs Aphrodite.
Me, even now, me also,
Seeing these things, a sudden pity
Beyond all governance transports:
The fountains of my tears
I can refrain no more,
Seeing Antigone here to the bridal chamber
Come, to the all-receiving chamber of Death.”

In this ode we have the Greek tragic view of the passion of Love, as the destroyer and distractor of man’s peace and sanity. Love is one of the means whereby tragic fate fulfils its purposes of vengeance. The circumstances of this particular case are these: Of Antigone’s two brothers one had marched against his native city, and the other had taken arms in its defence.

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