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[希腊神话56]俄狄浦斯

2006-02-28 00:00

  Oedipus

  A prophet warned King Laius of Thebes that because he had married his cousin Jocasta,he would be killed by his son.To avoid the disaster,he ordered his loyal shepherd to kill his newborn baby son.The good hearted slave,however,could not bring himself to do the evil deed. He pierced the baby' s feet  and tied them with ropes. Then he turned the baby over to the care of a fellow shepherd who happened to be the servant of the king of Corinth. The child was given the name of Oedipus,He was brought up by the childless royal couple as their son and successor.The prince had never doubted that the king was not his real father until one day he heard others talking about his parentage. Deeply troubled,he went to Delphi to require about his birth.There he was warned by Apollo not to return to his native country,because,should he do so , he would kill his father and marry his mother. The frightened young man turned his back on Corinth,determined not to return while his supposed parents lived.

  Oedipus had not gone far on his way to Thebes when he saw a cart coming towards him. The man sitting in the cart,angry at the young man in the way,whipped him on the face with an oath . Oedipus jumped onto the cart and killed him in his anger.of the five servants who followed their master on foot,only one escaped narrowly. Little did Oedipus think that the man sitting in the cart was King Laicus,his father. Presently the young manar rived in the kingdom of Thebes. Round about this time,the Thebans were troubled by a woman headed monster,called Sphinx, who produced a riddle to them. The crown and the hand of the widow queen were offered to anyone who could solve the riddle. Oedipus met Sphinx on a cliff. To the monster' s riddle,“What animal walks on four legs in the morning,on two at noon,and on three at night?”he offered the answer,“Man,Who creeps in infancy,walks upright in manhood,and supports his steps with a staff in old age.” Thus, Sphinx threw herself down into the valley. Oedipus became king of Thebes and husband of the queen,his mother.

  For a long time after this event,Oedipus lived in honour and prosperity. Four unnatural children  came out of this odd marriage,two sons and two daughters. Then the sad thing came.A plague raged throughout the land . Every family was affected,and not a day went by without new death. A prophet warned that the trouble would not be removed until the murderer of the former king Laius was driven out of the country. An old blind seer,Tiresias by name,was brought before the king and,outraged by the kings impolite language,declared that Oedipus himself was the hunted murderer. The king was shocked and annoyed. He called the Theban and Corinthian shepherds to prove the truth. As the two old shepherds had been concerned in his adoption as an infant,the truth finally became known. The queen hanged herself. Oedipus put out of his own eyes with a pin,so that he might not look on the sun again.he was driven out of the kingdom and wandered from one city to another,until he found protection in King Theseus'  Athens. There at the signal of Zeus' thunder,he mysteriously ended his poor earthly life.

  有个预言家警告底比斯国王拉伊俄斯说:由于他和他的表妹结了婚,他可能会被他儿子杀了。为了避免杀身之祸,他命令忠实的牧羊人把刚出生的婴儿杀死。然而,这个好心的牧羊人下不了毒手。他刺穿婴儿的脚,并把双脚用绳子捆起来。然后把婴儿托给他的一个同伴照看,他的这个同伴恰好是科林斯国王的仆人。这个孩子就是俄狄浦斯。无儿无女的国王夫妇把他当作儿子和继承人抚养成人。王子从没有怀疑过国王是他亲生父亲直到有一天他听到别人在谈论他的身事。他听到这些大惑不解,便动身到特尔斐去询问他的身世。在那儿阿波罗警告他不要回他的故土,因为如果他要这样做,他就会杀了他的父亲并且和他母亲结婚。得到这个忠告,俄狄浦斯转向与科林斯相反的方向,并下定决心在他以为是生身父亲的科林斯国王在世时决不踏上故土,决心不再回到他的父母可能住的地方。

  俄狄浦斯在通往底比斯的路上没走多远就看见一辆马车朝他驶来。坐在马车上的人对挡道的年轻人怒不可遏,一边咒骂一边用鞭子抽打着年轻人的脸。俄狄浦斯一气之下跳上马车杀了那人。徒步跟着他们的主人的五个随从中只有一个侥幸逃生。俄狄浦斯根本没想到坐在马车里的人就是国王拉伊俄斯,他的父亲。这个年轻人很快到达了底比斯王国。就在这个时候,底比斯人正被一个长着女人头的名叫斯芬克斯的怪兽困扰着,她给他们出了一个谜语,没人能破解得了。如果谁能解开这个谜,谁就能登上皇帝的宝座并娶皇后为妻。俄狄浦斯在悬崖上遇到了斯芬克斯。对于这个怪兽出的谜:“什么动物在早晨用四条腿走路,在中午用两条腿走路,在晚上用三条腿走路?”他回答到:“是人,在婴幼儿时期他爬行,长大后他直立行走,老年时他柱着拐棍。”就这样,斯芬克斯跳下了悬崖。俄狄浦斯成了底比斯的国王以及王后——他母亲的丈夫。

  这件事之后很久,俄狄浦斯过着富有和受人尊重的生活。这个奇异的婚姻给他带来了四个奇异的孩子,两个儿子,两个女儿。接着悲惨的事情发生了。瘟疫席卷了整个国土。每个家庭都被传染上了这种可怕的病,每一天都要死很多人。一个预言家告诉世人说:只有将杀害前国王拉伊俄斯的凶手赶出这个国家,这场灾难才能结束。一个年老眼瞎名叫泰瑞西斯的预言家被带到国王面前。国王粗鲁的言语激怒了他,他宣称俄狄浦斯自己就是凶手。国王大吃一惊。他叫来底比斯的和科林斯族牧羊人来证明这个事实。当那两个牧羊人说到国王还是婴儿的时候就收养了他,真相终于搞清楚了。王后上吊自缢了。俄狄浦斯用针挖出了自己的双眼,使自己再也看不见明亮的阳光。他被赶出了王国。他从一个城市流浪到另一个城市,直到他在提修斯国王的雅典得到了保护,在宙斯的一次霹雷中,他神秘地结束了自己贫穷短暂的一生。

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