ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε , μοῦσα , πολύτροπον , ὃς μάλα πολλὰ
πλάγχθη , ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσεν :
πολλῶν δ᾽ ἀνθρώπων ἴδεν ἄστεα καὶ νόον ἔγνω ,
πολλὰ δ᾽ ὅ γ᾽ ἐν πόντῳ πάθεν ἄλγεα ὃν κατὰ θυμόν ,
ἀρνύμενος ἥν τε ψυχὴν καὶ νόστον ἑταίρων .
ἀλλ᾽ οὐδ᾽ ὣς ἑτάρους ἐρρύσατο , ἱέμενός περ :
αὐτῶν γὰρ σφετέρῃσιν ἀτασθαλίῃσιν ὄλοντο ,
νήπιοι , οἳ κατὰ βοῦς Ὑπερίονος Ἠελίοιο
ἤσθιον : αὐτὰρ ὁ τοῖσιν ἀφείλετο νόστιμον ἦμαρ .
τῶν ἁμόθεν γε , θεά , θύγατερ Διός , εἰπὲ καὶ ἡμῖν .
ἔνθ᾽ ἄλλοι μὲν πάντες , ὅσοι φύγον αἰπὺν ὄλεθρον ,
οἴκοι ἔσαν , πόλεμόν τε πεφευγότες ἠδὲ θάλασσαν :
τὸν δ᾽ οἶον νόστου κεχρημένον ἠδὲ γυναικὸς
νύμφη πότνι᾽ ἔρυκε Καλυψὼ δῖα θεάων
ἐν σπέσσι γλαφυροῖσι , λιλαιομένη πόσιν εἶναι .
ἀλλ᾽ ὅτε δὴ ἔτος ἦλθε περιπλομένων ἐνιαυτῶν ,
τῷ οἱ ἐπεκλώσαντο θεοὶ οἶκόνδε νέεσθαι
εἰς Ἰθάκην , οὐδ᾽ ἔνθα πεφυγμένος ἦεν ἀέθλων
καὶ μετὰ οἷσι φίλοισι . θεοὶ δ᾽ ἐλέαιρον ἅπαντες
νόσφι Ποσειδάωνος : ὁ δ᾽ ἀσπερχὲς μενέαινεν
ἀντιθέῳ Ὀδυσῆι πάρος ἣν γαῖαν ἱκέσθαι .
ἀλλ᾽ ὁ μὲν Αἰθίοπας μετεκίαθε τηλόθ᾽ ἐόντας ,
Αἰθίοπας τοὶ διχθὰ δεδαίαται , ἔσχατοι ἀνδρῶν ,
οἱ μὲν δυσομένου Ὑπερίονος οἱ δ᾽ ἀνιόντος ,
ἀντιόων ταύρων τε καὶ ἀρνειῶν ἑκατόμβης .
ἔνθ᾽ ὅ γ᾽ ἐτέρπετο δαιτὶ παρήμενος : οἱ δὲ δὴ ἄλλοι
Ζηνὸς ἐνὶ μεγάροισιν Ὀλυμπίου ἁθρόοι ἦσαν .
τοῖσι δὲ μύθων ἦρχε πατὴρ ἀνδρῶν τε θεῶν τε :
μνήσατο γὰρ κατὰ θυμὸν ἀμύμονος Αἰγίσθοιο ,
τόν ῥ᾽ Ἀγαμεμνονίδης τηλεκλυτὸς ἔκταν᾽ Ὀρέστης :
τοῦ ὅ γ᾽ ἐπιμνησθεὶς ἔπε᾽ ἀθανάτοισι μετηύδα :
ὢ πόποι , οἷον δή νυ θεοὺς βροτοὶ αἰτιόωνται :
ἐξ ἡμέων γάρ φασι κάκ᾽ ἔμμεναι , οἱ δὲ καὶ αὐτοὶ
σφῇσιν ἀτασθαλίῃσιν ὑπὲρ μόρον ἄλγε᾽ ἔχουσιν ,
ὡς καὶ νῦν Αἴγισθος ὑπὲρ μόρον Ἀτρεΐδαο
γῆμ᾽ ἄλοχον μνηστήν , τὸν δ᾽ ἔκτανε νοστήσαντα ,
εἰδὼς αἰπὺν ὄλεθρον , ἐπεὶ πρό οἱ εἴπομεν ἡμεῖς ,
Ἑρμείαν πέμψαντες , ἐύσκοπον ἀργεϊφόντην ,
μήτ᾽ αὐτὸν κτείνειν μήτε μνάασθαι ἄκοιτιν :
ἐκ γὰρ Ὀρέσταο τίσις ἔσσεται Ἀτρεΐδαο ,
ὁππότ᾽ ἂν ἡβήσῃ τε καὶ ἧς ἱμείρεται αἴης .
ὣς ἔφαθ᾽ Ἑρμείας , ἀλλ᾽ οὐ φρένας Αἰγίσθοιο
πεῖθ᾽ ἀγαθὰ φρονέων : νῦν δ᾽ ἁθρόα πάντ᾽ ἀπέτισεν .
Canta , o Musa , l’eroe di vario ingegno , Che gran tempo vagò , poiché distrutto Ebbe il sacro Ilïon ;
che d’infinite Genti i costumi e le città conobbe ;
E gravi in mar sostenne e lunghi affanni
Mentre , al suo scampo intento , alle paterne Soglie i compagni ricondur cercava .
Vano pensier ; ché tutti un’empia voglia
A perir li traea . Stolti ! del Sole
Iperïone divorar fûr osi
I candidi giovenchi , e il Nume irato
Ad essi del ritorno il dì rapìa .
Or tu , figlia di Giove , in parte almeno ,
Sì memorandi casi a noi rivela .
Già gli achivi guerrier , ch’erano all’armi
Sfuggiti e al mare , avean riposo e pace
Nelle avite dimore . Il solo Ulisse ,
Dalla patria lontano e dalla sposa ,
Nelle amene sue grotte la superba
Ninfa e Diva Calipso trattenea ,
Bramosa di sue nozze . E benché fosse
Col volgere degli anni il dì venuto
Che avean prefisso al suo ritorno i Numi ,
In mezzo a’ suoi , nelle sue stesse case ,
Molto il misero ancor soffrir dovea .
Tutti d’Ulisse avean pietà gli Eterni ,
Salvo Nettuno , che durò nell’ira
Contro l’itaco eroe , sin che non ebbe
Alfin raggiunto il suol natìo . Ma sceso
Era il forte Nettuno in Etïopia ,
Dalle genti divisa ultima terra ,
Di cui guarda una parte il Sol che nasce ,
L’altra il Sol che tramonta . Un’ecatombe
Gli avean di tauri offerta e di montoni
I felici Etiòpi , e ai lor conviti
Egli seder godea . Gli altri Celesti
Erano intanto ne’ dorati alberghi
Dell’Olimpo raccolti ; e il gran Saturnio ,
Egisto rimembrando , a cui togliea
La vita Oreste , il figlio dell’Atride ,
A parlar cominciò : Sempre il mortale
Delle sventure ch’egli a sé procaccia
Incolpa gl’Immortali , e fato appella
La sua follia .
Tell me , O Muse , of the man of many devices , who wandered full many ways after he had sacked the sacred citadel of Troy . Many were the men whose cities he saw and whose mind he learned , aye , and many the woes he suffered in his heart upon the sea ,
seeking to win his own life and the return of his comrades . Yet even so he saved not his comrades , though he desired it sore , for through their own blind folly they perished—fools , who devoured the kine of Helios Hyperion ; but he took from them the day of their returning .
Of these things , goddess , daughter of Zeus , beginning where thou wilt , tell thou even unto us . Now all the rest , as many as had escaped sheer destruction , were at home , safe from both war and sea , but Odysseus alone , filled with longing for his return and for his wife , did the queenly nymph Calypso , that bright goddess ,
keep back in her hollow caves , yearning that he should be her husband . But when , as the seasons revolved , the year came in which the gods had ordained that he should return home to Ithaca , not even there was he free from toils , even among his own folk . And all the gods pitied him
save Poseidon ; but he continued to rage unceasingly against godlike Odysseus until at length he reached his own land . Howbeit Poseidon had gone among the far-off Ethiopians—the Ethiopians who dwell sundered in twain , the farthermost of men , some where Hyperion sets and some where he rises ,
there to receive a hecatomb of bulls and rams , and there he was taking his joy , sitting at the feast ; but the other gods were gathered together in the halls of Olympian Zeus . Among them the father of gods and men was first to speak , for in his heart he thought of noble Aegisthus ,
whom far-famed Orestes , Agamemnon ' s son , had slain . Thinking on him he spoke among the immortals , and said : " Look you now , how ready mortals are to blame the gods . It is from us , they say , that evils come , but they even of themselves , through their own blind folly , have sorrows beyond that which is ordained .
Even as now Aegisthus , beyond that which was ordained , took to himself the wedded wife of the son of Atreus , and slew him on his return , though well he knew of sheer destruction , seeing that we spake to him before , sending Hermes , the keen-sighted Argeiphontes , that he should neither slay the man nor woo his wife ;
for from Orestes shall come vengeance for the son of Atreus when once he has come to manhood and longs for his own land . So Hermes spoke , but for all his good intent he prevailed not upon the heart of Aegisthus ; and now he has paid the full price of all . "