(3.100-105) So she spake, and the goddesses smiled and looked at each other. But Cypris again spoke, vexed at heart: "To others my sorrows are a jest; nor ought I to tell them to all; I know them too well myself. But now, since this pleases you both, I will make the attempt and coax him, and he will not say me nay."
100 Ὧς φάτο: μείδησαν δὲ θεαί, καὶ ἐσέδρακον ἄντην
101 ἀλλήλαις. ἡ δ' αὖτις ἀκηχεμένη προσέειπεν:
102 "Ἄλλοις ἄλγεα τἀμὰ γέλως πέλει: οὐδέ τί με χρὴ
103 μυθεῖσθαι πάντεσσιν: ἅλις εἰδυῖα καὶ αὐτή.
104 νῦν δ' ἐπεὶ ὔμμι φίλον τόδε δὴ πέλει ἀμφοτέρῃσιν,
105 πειρήσω, καί μιν μειλίξομαι, οὐδ' ἀπιθήσει."
(3.106-110) Thus she spake, and Hera took her slender hand and gently smiling, replied: "Perform this task, Cytherea, straightway, as thou sayest; and be not angry or contend with thy boy; he will cease hereafter to vex thee."
106 Ὧς φάτο: τὴν δ' Ἥρη ῥαδινῆς ἐπεμάσσατο χειρός,
107 ἦκα δὲ μειδιόωσα παραβλήδην προσέειπεν:
108 "Οὕτω νῦν, Κυθέρεια, τόδε χρέος, ὡς ἀγορεύεις,
109 ἔρξον ἄφαρ: καὶ μή τι χαλέπτεο, μηδ' ἐρίδαινε
110 χωομένη σῷ παιδί: μεταλλήξει γὰρ ὀπίσσω."
(3.111-128) She spake, and left her seat, and Athena accompanied her and they went forth both hastening back. And Cypris went on her way through the glens of Olympus to find her boy. And she found him apart, in the blooming orchard of Zeus, not alone, but with him Ganymedes, whom once Zeus had set to dwell among the immortal gods, being enamoured of his beauty. And they were playing for golden dice, as boys in one house are wont to do. And already greedy Eros was holding the palm of his left hand quite full of them under his breast, standing upright; and on the bloom of his cheeks a sweet blush was glowing. But the other sat crouching hard by, silent and downcast, and he had two dice left which he threw one after the other, and was angered by the loud laughter of Eros. And lo, losing them straightway with the former, he went off empty handed, helpless, and noticed not the approach of Cypris. And she stood before her boy, and laying her hand on his lips, addressed him:
111 ̂Ἠ ῥα, καὶ ἔλλιπε θῶκον: ἐφωμάρτησε δ' Ἀθήνη:
112 ἐκ δ' ἴσαν ἄμφω ταίγε παλίσσυτοι. ἡ δὲ καὶ αὐτὴ
113 βῆ ῥ̓ ἴμεν Οὐλύμποιο κατὰ πτύχας, εἴ μιν ἐφεύροι.
114 εὗρε δὲ τόνγ' ἀπάνευθε Διὸς θαλερῇ ἐν ἀλωῇ,
115 οὐκ οἶον, μετα καὶ Γανυμήδεα, τόν ῥά ποτε Ζεὺς
116 οὐρανῷ ἐγκατένασσεν ἐφέστιον ἀθανάτοισιν,
117 κάλλεος ἱμερθείς. ἀμφ' ἀστραγάλοισι δὲ τώγε
118 χρυσείοις, ἅ τε κοῦροι ὁμήθεες, ἑψιόωντο.
119 καί ῥ̓ ὁ μὲν ἤδη πάμπαν ἐνίπλεον ᾧ ὑπὸ μαζῷ
120 μάργος Ἔρως λαιῆς ὑποΐσχανε χειρὸς ἀγοστόν,
121 ὀρθὸς ἐφεστηώς: γλυκερὸν δέ οἱ ἀμφὶ παρειὰς
122 χροιῇ θάλλεν ἔρευθος. ὁ δ' ἐγγύθεν ὀκλαδὸν ἧστο
123 σῖγα κατηφιόων: δοιὼ δ' ἔχεν, ἄλλον ἔτ' αὔτως
124 ἄλλῳ ἐπιπροϊείς, κεχόλωτο δὲ καγχαλόωντι.
125 καὶ μὴν τούσγε παρᾶσσον ἐπὶ προτέροισιν ὀλέσσας
126 βῆ κενεαῖς σὺν χερσὶν ἀμήχανος, οὐδ' ἐνόησεν
127 Κύπριν ἐπιπλομένην. ἡ δ' ἀντίη ἵστατο παιδός,
128 καί μιν ἄφαρ γναθμοῖο κατασχομένη προσέειπεν:
(3.129-144) "Why dost thou smile in triumph, unutterable rogue? Hast thou cheated him thus, and unjustly overcome the innocent child? Come, be ready to perform for me the task I will tell thee of, and I will give thee Zeus' all-beauteous plaything -- the one which his dear nurse Adrasteia made for him, while he still lived a child, with childish ways, in the Idaean cave -- a well-rounded ball; no better toy wilt thou get from the hands of Hephaestus. All of gold are its zones, and round each double seams run in a circle; but the stitches are hidden, and a dark blue spiral overlays them all. But if thou shouldst cast it with thy hands, lo, like a star, it sends a flaming track through the sky. This I will give thee; and do thou strike with thy shaft and charm the daughter of Aeetes with love for Jason; and let there be no loitering. For then my thanks would be the slighter."
129 "Τίπτ' ἐπιμειδιάᾳς, ἄφατον κακόν; ἦέ μιν αὔτως
130 ἤπαφες, οὐδὲ δίκῃ περιέπλεο νῆιν ἐόντα;
131 εἰ δ' ἄγε μοι πρόφρων τέλεσον χρέος, ὅττι κεν εἴπω:
132 καί κέν τοι ὀπάσαιμι Διὸς περικαλλὲς ἄθυρμα
133 κεῖνο, τό οἱ ποίησε φίλη τροφὸς Ἀδρήστεια
134 ἄντρῳ ἐν Ἰδαίῳ ἔτι νήπια κουρίζοντι,
135 σφαῖραν ἐυτρόχαλον, τῆς οὐ σύγε μείλιον ἄλλο
136 χειρῶν Ἡφαίστοιο κατακτεατίσσῃ ἄρειον.
137 χρύσεα μέν οἱ κύκλα τετεύχαται: ἀμφὶ δ' ἑκάστῳ
138 διπλόαι ἁψῖδες περιηγέες εἱλίσσονται:
139 κρυπταὶ δὲ ῥαφαί εἰσιν: ἕλιξ δ' ἐπιδέδρομε πάσαις
140 κυανέη. ἀτὰρ εἴ μιν ἑαῖς ἐνὶ χερσὶ βάλοιο,
141 ἀστὴρ ὥς, φλεγέθοντα δι' ἠέρος ὁλκὸν ἵησιν.
142 τήν τοι ἐγὼν ὀπάσω: σὺ δὲ παρθένον Αἰήταο
143 θέλξον ὀιστεύσας ἐπ' Ἰήσονι: μηδέ τις ἔστω
144 ἀμβολίη. δὴ γάρ κεν ἀφαυροτέρη χάρις εἴη."
(3.145-150) Thus she spake, and welcome were her words to the listening boy. And he threw down all his toys, and eagerly seizing her robe on this side and on that, clung to the goddess. And he implored her to bestow the gift at once; but she, facing him with kindly words, touched his cheeks, kissed him and drew him to her, and replied with a smile:
145 Ὧς φάτο: τῷ δ' ἀσπαστὸν ἔπος γένετ' εἰσαΐοντι.
146 μείλια δ' ἔκβαλε πάντα, καὶ ἀμφοτέρῃσι χιτῶνος
147 νωλεμὲς ἔνθα καὶ ἔνθα θεᾶς ἔχεν ἀμφιμεμαρπώς.
148 λίσσετο δ' αἶψα πορεῖν αὐτοσχεδόν: ἡ δ' ἀγανοῖσιν
149 ἀντομένη μύθοισιν, ἐπειρύσσασα παρειάς,
150 κύσσε ποτισχομένη, καὶ ἀμείβετο μειδιόωσα:
(3.151-153) "Be witness now thy dear head and mine, that surely I will give thee the gift and deceive thee not, if thou wilt strike with thy shaft Aeetes' daughter."
151 "Ἴστω νῦν τόδε σεῖο φίλον κάρη ἠδ' ἐμὸν αὐτῆς,
152 ἦ μέν τοι δῶρόν γε παρέξομαι, οὐδ' ἀπατήσω,
153 εἴ κεν ἐνισκίμψῃς κούρῃ βέλος Αἰήταο."
(3.154-166) She spoke, and he gathered up his dice, and having well counted them all threw them into his mother's gleaming lap. And straightway with golden baldric he slung round him his quiver from where it leant against a tree-trunk, and took up his curved bow. And he fared forth through the fruitful orchard of the palace of Zeus. Then he passed through the gates of Olympus high in air; hence is a downward path from heaven; and the twin poles rear aloft steep mountain tops the highest crests of earth, where the risen sun grows ruddy with his first beams. And beneath him there appeared now the life-giving earth and cities of men and sacred streams of rivers, and now in turn mountain peaks and the ocean all around, as he swept through the vast expanse of air.
154 Φῆ: ὁ δ' ἄῤ ἀστραγάλους συναμήσατο, κὰδ δὲ φαεινῷ
155 μητρὸς ἑῆς εὖ πάντας ἀριθμήσας βάλε κόλπῳ.
156 αὐτίκα δ' ἰοδόκην χρυσέῃ περικάτθετο μίτρῃ
157 πρέμνῳ κεκλιμένην: ἀνὰ δ' ἀγκύλον εἵλετο τόξον.
158 βῆ δὲ διὲκ μεγάροιο Διὸς πάγκαρπον ἀλωήν.
159 αὐτὰρ ἔπειτα πύλας ἐξήλυθεν Οὐλύμποιο
160 αἰθερίας: ἔνθεν δὲ καταιβάτις ἐστὶ κέλευθος
161 οὐρανίη: δοιὼ δὲ πόλοι ἀνέχουσι κάρηνα
162 οὐρέων ἠλιβάτων, κορυφαὶ χθονός, ᾗχί τ' ἀερθεὶς
163 ἠέλιος πρώτῃσιν ἐρεύθεται ἀκτίνεσσιν.
164 νειόθι δ' ἄλλοτε γαῖα φερέσβιος ἄστεά τ' ἀνδρῶν
165 φαίνετο καὶ ποταμῶν ἱεροὶ ῥόοι, ἄλλοτε δ' αὖτε
166 ἄκριες, ἀμφὶ δὲ πόντος ἀν' αἰθέρα πολλὸν ἰόντι.
(3.167-193) Now the heroes apart in ambush, in a back-water of the river, were met in council, sitting on the benches of their ship. And Aeson's son himself was speaking among them; and they were listening silently in their places sitting row upon row: "My friends, what pleases myself that will I say out; it is for you to bring about its fulfilment. For in common is our task, and common to all alike is the right of speech; and he who in silence withholds his thought and his counsel, let him know that it is he alone that bereaves this band of its home-return. Do ye others rest here in the ship quietly with your arms; but I will go to the palace of Aeetes, taking with me the sons of Phrixus and two comrades as well. And when I meet him I will first make trial with words to see if he will be willing to give up the golden fleece for friendship's sake or not, but trusting to his might will set at nought our quest. For so, learning his frowardness first from himself, we will consider whether we shall meet him in battle, or some other plan shall avail us, if we refrain from the war-cry. And let us not merely by force, before putting words to the test, deprive him of his own possession. But first it is better to go to him and win his favour by speech. Oftentimes, I ween, does speech accomplish at need what prowess could hardly catty through, smoothing the path in manner befitting. And he once welcomed noble Phrixus, a fugitive from his stepmother's wiles and the sacrifice prepared by his father. For all men everywhere, even the most shameless, reverence the ordinance of Zeus, god of strangers, and regard it."
167 Ἥρωες δ' ἀπάνευθεν ἑῆς ἐπὶ σέλμασι νηὸς
168 ἐν ποταμῷ καθ' ἕλος λελοχημένοι ἠγορόωντο.
169 αὐτὸς δ' Αἰσονίδης μετεφώνεεν: οἱ δ' ὑπάκουον
170 ἠρέμας ᾗ ἐνὶ χώρῃ ἐπισχερὼ ἑδριόωντες:
171 "̂Ὠ φίλοι, ἤτοι ἐγὼ μὲν ὅ μοι ἐπιανδάνει αὐτῷ
172 ἐξερέω: τοῦ δ' ὔμμι τέλος κρηῆναι ἔοικεν.
173 ξυνὴ γὰρ χρειώ, ξυνοὶ δέ τε μῦθοι ἔασιν
174 πᾶσιν ὁμῶς: ὁ δὲ σῖγα νόον βουλήν τ' ἀπερύκων
175 ἴστω καὶ νόστου τόνδε στόλον οἶος ἀπούρας.
176 ὧλλοι μὲν κατὰ νῆα σὺν ἔντεσι μίμνεθ' ἕκηλοι:
177 αὐτὰρ ἐγὼν ἐς δώματ' ἐλεύσομαι Αἰήταο,
178 υἷας ἑλὼν Φρίξοιο δύω δ' ἐπὶ τοῖσιν ἑταίρους.
179 πειρήσω δ' ἐπέεσσι παροίτερον ἀντιβολήσας,
180 εἴ κ' ἐθέλοι φιλότητι δέρος χρύσειον ὀπάσσαι,
181 ἦε καὶ οὔ, πίσυνος δὲ βίῃ μετιόντας ἀτίσσει.
182 ὧδε γὰρ ἐξ αὐτοῖο πάρος κακότητα δαέντες
183 φρασσόμεθ', εἴτ' ἄρηι συνοισόμεθ' εἴτε τις ἄλλη
184 μῆτις ἐπίρροθος ἔσται ἐεργομένοισιν ἀυτῆς.
185 μηδ' αὔτως ἀλκῇ, πρὶν ἔπεσσί γε πειρηθῆναι,
186 τόνδ' ἀπαμείρωμεν σφέτερον κτέρας. ἀλλὰ πάροιθεν
187 λωίτερον μύθῳ μιν ἀρέσσασθαι μετιόντας.
188 πολλάκι τοι ῥέα μῦθος, ὅ κεν μόλις ἐξανύσειεν
189 ἠνορέη, τόδ' ἔρεξε κατὰ χρέος, ᾗπερ ἐῴκει
190 πρηΰνας. ὁ δὲ καί ποτ' ἀμύμονα Φρίξον ἔδεκτο
191 μητρυιῆς φεύγοντα δόλον πατρός τε θυηλάς.
192 πάντες ἐπεὶ πάντῃ καὶ ὅτις μάλα κύντατος ἀνδρῶν,
193 Ξεινίου αἰδεῖται Ζηνὸς θέμιν ἠδ' ἀλεγίζει."
(3.194-209) Thus he spake, and the youths approved the words of Aeson's son with one accord, nor was there one to counsel otherwise. And then he summoned to go with him the sons of Phrixus, and Telamon and Augeias; and himself took Hermes' wand; and at once they passed forth from the ship beyond the reeds and the water to dry land, towards the rising ground of the plain. The plain, I wis, is called Circe's; and here in line grow many willows and osiers, on whose topmost branches hang corpses bound with cords. For even now it is an abomination with the Colchians to burn dead men with fire; nor is it lawful to place them in the earth and raise a mound above, but to wrap them in untanned oxhides and suspend them from trees far from the city. And so earth has an equal portion with air, seeing that they bury the women; for that is the custom of their land.
194 Ὧς φάτ': ἐπῄνησαν δὲ νέοι ἔπος Αἰσονίδαο
195 πασσυδίῃ, οὐδ' ἔσκε παρὲξ ὅτις ἄλλο κελεύοι.
196 καὶ τότ' ἄρ' υἱῆας Φρίξου Τελαμῶνά θ' ἕπεσθαι
197 ὦρσε καὶ Αὐγείην: αὐτὸς δ' ἕλεν Ἑρμείαο
198 σκῆπτρον: ἄφαρ δ' ἄρα νηὸς ὑπὲρ δόνακάς τε καὶ ὕδωρ
199 χέρσονδ' ἐξαπέβησαν ἐπὶ θρῳσμοῦ πεδίοιο.
200 Κιρκαῖον τόδε που κικλήσκεται: ἔνθα δὲ πολλαὶ
201 ἑξείης πρόμαλοί τε καὶ ἰτέαι ἐκπεφύασιν,
202 τῶν καὶ ἐπ' ἀκροτάτων νέκυες σειρῇσι κρέμανται
203 δέσμιοι. εἰσέτι νῦν γὰρ ἄγος Κόλχοισιν ὄρωρεν
204 ἀνέρας οἰχομένους πυρὶ καιέμεν: οὐδ' ἐνὶ γαίῃ
205 ἔστι θέμις στείλαντας ὕπερθ' ἐπὶ σῆμα χέεσθαι,
206 ἀλλ' ἐν ἀδεψήτοισι κατειλύσαντε βοείαις
207 δενδρέων ἐξάπτειν ἑκὰς ἄστεος. ἠέρι δ' ἴσην
208 καὶ χθὼν ἔμμορεν αἶσαν, ἐπεὶ χθονὶ ταρχύουσιν
209 θηλυτέρας: ἡ γάρ τε δίκη θεσμοῖο τέτυκται.