Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A-Z: Electrum

In his hands he took his shield, all glittering: no one ever broke it with a blow or crushed it. And a wonder it was to see; for its whole orb was a-shimmer with enamel and white ivory and electrum, and it glowed with shining gold; and there were zones of cyanus drawn upon it. In the centre was Fear worked in adamant, unspeakable, staring backwards with eyes that glowed with fire. His mouth was full of teeth in a white row, fearful and daunting, and upon his grim brow hovered frightful Strife who arrays the throng of men: pitiless she, for she took away the mind and senses of poor wretches who made war against the son of Zeus. Their souls passed beneath the earth and went down into the house of Hades; but their bones, when the skin is rotted about them, crumble away on the dark earth under parching Sirius.

–– Hesiod, The Shield of Heracles, II, 139-153 (Unknown Translator)

The complete text can be found at Wikisource


  1. ....and went down into the house of Hades; I liked this piece especially.

  2. That was an eye-brain full of words. I'm not that eloquent in my writings. I'm pretty simple.

  3. Another wonderful choice. Sad we don't know the translator's name - he or she is key to our appreciation of the thing here and now. I love your take on the series.