Page:Comedies of Aristophanes (Hickie 1853) vol1.djvu/194

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Phid. Here rave and babble to yourself.[1] [Exit Phidippides.]

Strep. Ah me, what madness![2] How mad, then, I was, when I ejected the gods on account of Socrates! But, O dear Hermes, by no means be wroth with me, nor destroy me; but pardon me, since I have gone crazy through prating. And become my adviser, whether I shall bring an action and prosecute them, or whatever you think.[3]—You advise me rightly, not permitting me to get up a law-suit, but as soon as possible to set fire to the house of the prating fellows. Come hither, come hither, Xanthias! Come forth with a ladder and with a mattock, and then mount upon the thinking-shop, and dig down the roof, if you love your master, until you tumble the house upon them. [Xanthias mounts upon the roof.] But let some one bring me a lighted torch, and I'll make some of them this day suffer punishment, even if they be ever so much impostors.

1st Dis. (from within). Hollo! hollo![4]

Strep. It is your business, O torch, to send forth abundant flame. [Mounts upon the roof.]

1st Dis. What are you doing, fellow?

Strep. What I am doing? why, what else, than chopping[5] logic with the beams of your house. [Sets the house on fire.]

2nd Dis. (from within). Ah me! who is setting fire to our house?

Strep. That man, whose cloak you have taken.

3rd Dis. (from within). You will destroy us! you will destroy us!

Strep. For I also wish this very thing; unless my mattock deceive my hopes, or I should somehow fall first and break my neck.

    "What a thrice-double ass
    Was I, to take this drunkard for a god,
    And worship this dull fool."

    "The old man here points to an ill-made, round earthen vase, which stood in front of Socrates' house; such as were probably set outside in the country, instead of the city Hermæ." Wolf.

  1. "Stop here, and rave and drivel to yourself." Walsh.
  2. For the omission of the article, see note on Lys. 967.
  3. "Oder was dir beliebt." Droysen.
  4. See Süvern, Clouds, p. 118.
  5. "Was anders als
    Ich nehm' an eurem Hause die Dachdialektik vor." Droysen.