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Sunday, January 01, 2006

Locus of Aeschylus quotation?

If you can give the citation for the Aeschylus quotation used by RFK the day MLK was assassinated, please tell me. From memory: "Even during sleep, sorrow falls, drop by drop, into our hearts; thus, in spite of ourselves, we learn wisdom."


Robert Bethune said...

I believe the quotation is from Agamemnon. The Chorus has a speech at line 176 that reads, in the Smythe translation, "Zeus, who sets mortals on the path to understanding, Zeus, who has established as a fixed law that “wisdom comes by suffering.” But even as trouble, bringing memory of pain, drips over the mind in sleep, [180] so wisdom comes to men, whether they want it or not. Harsh, it seems to me, is the grace of gods enthroned upon their awful seats." The URL for the quotation I've just given is and from there you can easily jump to the Greek. I'm preparing to begin a translation of the Oresteia for the stage and I'm thinking of starting a blog about it; if you're interested you can contact me at

Mon Apr 24, 07:55:33 PM MST  

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