Anno Urbis - The Roman Empire Online

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56. THE DEATH OF HERCULES

Herculés nihil malí suspicáns vestem quam Lichás attulerat statim induit; pauló post tamen dolórem per omnia membra sénsit, et quae causa esset éius reí mágnopere mirábátur. Dolóre paene exanimátus vestem détrahere cónátus est; illa tamen in corpore haesit, neque úlló modó abscindí potuit. Tum démum Herculés quasi furóre impulsus in montem Octam sé contulit, et in rogum, quem summá celeritáte exstrúxit, sé imposuit. Hóc cum fécisset, eós quí circumstábant órávit ut rogum quam celerrimé succenderent. Omnés diú recúsábant; tandem tamen pástor quídam ad misericordiam inductus ígnem subdidit. Tum, dum omnia fúmó obscúrantur, Herculés dénsá núbe vélátus á Iove in Olympum abreptus est.




THE ARGONAUTS


The celebrated voyage of the Argonauts was brought about in this way. Pelias had expelled his brother Aeson from his kingdom in Thessaly, and had determined to take the life of Jason, the son of Aeson. Jason, however, escaped and grew up to manhood in another country. At last he returned to Thessaly; and Pelias, fearing that he might attempt to recover the kingdom, sent him to fetch the Golden Fleece from Colchis, supposing this to be an impossible feat. Jason with a band of heroes set sail in the ship Argo (called after Argus, its builder), and after many adventures reached Colchis. Here Aeétes, king of Colchis, who was unwilling to give up the Fleece, set Jason to perform what seemed an impossible task, namely to plough a field with certain fire-breathing oxen, and then to sow it with dragon's teeth. Medéa, however, the daughter of the king, assisted Jason by her skill in magic, first to perform the task appointed, and then to procure the Fleece. She then fled with Jason, and to delay the pursuit of her father, sacrificed her brother Absyrtus. After reaching Thessaly, Medéa caused the death of Pelias and was expelled from the country with her husband. They removed to Corinth, and here Medéa becoming jealous of Glauce, daughter of Creon, caused her death by means of a poisoned robe. She was afterward carried off in a chariot sent by the sun-god, and a little later Jason was accidentally killed.



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