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(1887) [MARC] Author: Viktor Rydberg Translator: Alfred Corning Clark With: Hans Anton Westesson Lindehn
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - The Roman Emperors in Marble - 5. Nero

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THE ROMAN EMPERORS IN MARBLE. IO9
that the divinity sees, at the moment, the goddesses of
remorse forcing their way into the sanctuary, and with
the bow in the left hand, angrily meets them, and drives
them from the temple ; and after this, completes with
the whip of purification, the act by which the blood-
guikiness is to be expiated.
This does not entirely accord, no doubt, with the de-
scription of ^Eschylus, but meets it at the principal
point, which it was enough for the artist to strike. No
figure could better than one like this, remind the new
Orestes that a reconciliation with the divine powers was
possible, and none was better adapted, in his dark hours,
to shine with a hope of peace.
In ^schylus, however, even Apollo himself is unable
to appease the Eumenides : he can only lull them into
sleep for a time. That divinely inspired poet, who with
the sense of beauty and philosophic instinct of the Hellene
combines the lofty nature and deep moral earnestness of
the Hebrew prophets, has felt, and wished to express,
that religious rites and services of the temple may deaden
the stings of conscience, but cannot atone for sin, can-
not mend that which is broken. Apollo himself counsels
Orestes to fly to Pallas Athena, and there, before the
Areopagus, submit to God’s judgment in human affairs
of justice and equity. The Eumenides follow him
thither, too, and sing at the threshold of the tribunal,
the heart-appalling chorus Schiller refers to, and has
freely imitated in his fine ballad " Kraniche des Ibycus."
The members of the Areopagus listen to the accusation
and defence ;
and when it appears that their votes are
equal in the scale, for release and for condemnation, the
wise and gentle Pallas gives judgment in Orestes’ favor.
But she gives the pangs of conscience their honor, too.

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