— Quod cernō nefās?

nātī cruentā caede cōnfectī iacent,1160

perēmpta coniūnx. quis Lycus rēgnum obtinet,

quis tanta Thēbīs scelera mōlīrī ausus est

Hercule reversō? quisquis Ismēnī loca,

Actaea quisquis arva, quī geminō marī

pulsāta Pelopis rēgna Dardaniī colis,1165

succurre, saevae clādis auctōrem indicā.

ruat īra in omnēs: hostis est quisquis mihi

nōn mōnstrat hostem. victor Alcīdae, latēs?

prōcēde, seu tū vindicās currūs trucēs

Thrācis cruentī sīve Gēryonae pecus1170

Libyaeve dominōs; nūlla pugnandī mora est.

ēn nūdus adstō; vel meīs armīs licet

petās inermem.

Hercules finally recognizes his murdered family but does not yet understand that he killed them. He redirects his anger to the supposed murderer, demands help in identifying him, and challenges him to attack.

1160 Note the resonant triple alliteration of “c”. cruentā caede: ablative of manner (AG 412) depending on cōnfectī (“killed”).

1160 perēmpta: supply estquis Lycus:  Hercules assumes some new “Lycus” has caused destruction like the old one did.

1162 Thebīs: locative ablative (AG 429.4).

1163 Hercule reversō: “though Hercules has returned,” concessive ablative absolute.

1163–64 quisquis … quisquis: the subjects of 1165 colis and 1166 succurre … indicā. Hercules pleads to any person from across Greece to come to his aid.

1163 Ismēnī: a river in Boeotia that connects to the city of Thebes.

1164 Actaea: adjective from Actē, an ancient name for Attica.

1164–65 geminō marī / pulsāta: “struck by twin seas,” i.e. the Aegean and the Ionian seas. rēgna Pelopis Dardaniī: “the realm of Dardanian Pelops,” still known as the Peloponnese. Pelops was called “Dardanian” because he was born in Asia Minor, home of Dardanus the mythical ancestor of the Trojans.

1167 ruat: hortatory subjunctive (AG 439). ira: Hercules’ own anger.

1169–71. Hercules speaks as if his unknown enemy is an avenger of the opponents that he defeated in his Labors.

1170 currūs … Thrācis: “the Thracian’s chariots.” A reference to the tyrant Diomedes of Thrace, whom Hercules fed to his own man-eating horses. Gēryonae pecus: Geryon’s cattle.” Libyaeve dominōs: “Libya’s lords,” Antaeus of Libya and Busiris of Egypt.

1171 nulla … mora est: i.e., Hercules will not delay. pugnandī: genitive gerund depending on mora (AG 504). 

1172 nudus: without his weapons. vel meīs armīs: “even with own own weapons: Hercules is not only unarmed, but is willing for his opponent to attack him with his own weapons.

1172–73 licet … petās: a substantive clause of purpose without ut (AG 565), “it is permitted for you to attack.”

cruentus –a –um: bloody, blood-stained

perimō –ere –ēmī –ēmptus: to annihilate; prevent; kill

coniūnx coniugis f.: spouse, wife

Lycus –ī m.: Lycus

obtineō obtinēre obtinuī obtentus: to possess

Thēbae –ārum f.: Thebes

mōliō –īre: to build, erect; endeavour, work at

Herculēs –is m.: Hercules

Ismēnē –ēs f.: Ismene, daughter of Oedipus

Actaeus –a –um: Athenian, Attic

geminus –a –um: twin

pulsō pulsāre pulsāvī pulsātus: to push, strike

Pelops –opis m.: Pelops (name)

Dardanius –a –um: Dardanian; Trojan

succurrō –currere –currī –cursūrum: to run under; come to mind; assist, be useful

clādēs clādis f.: disaster, destruction, defeat

ruō ruere ruī rūtum: to rush

mōnstrō mōnstrāre mōnstrāvī mōnstrātus: to show, point out

Alcīdēs –ae m.: a descendant of Alceus; Hercules

vindicō vindicāre vindicāvī vindicātus: to claim; to avenge

trux trucis: wild, rough, savage

Thrāx –ācis: Thracian

cruentus –a –um: bloody, blood-stained

Gēryōn –onis and Gēryonēs –ae m.: Geryon

Libya –ae f.: Libya

dominus dominī m.: master, lord

ēn or em: Look! Behold!

astō astāre astitī: to stand near/by

inermis inermis inerme: unarmed

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