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Prometheus Bound

Prometheus Bound

by Aeschylus

Compassion and Forgiveness Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

CHORUS. I see, Prometheus; and fear brings rushing into my eyes a mist full of tears on seeing you left here to wither, bound to this rock by these degrading bonds of adamant. (144-151)

The Chorus might not be strong on the advice, but the sure do feel sorry for Prometheus. On the one hand, the Chorus expresses sympathy for Prometheus's physical suffering. On the other hand, they express sympathy for his cause, sharing his views of Zeus as an utter tyrant. (But not enough sympathy to join his cause.)

Quote #2

CHORUS. What god is so hard-hearted As to take delight in this? Who does not share the distress of your sufferings—except for Zeus? (160-167)

Here, the Chorus says that the entire world is on his side—oh, except for the most important guy: Zeus. But we're still wondering when anyone is actually going to do anything useful for the poor guy—like maybe bring him a glass of water and a snack?

Quote #3

PROMETHEUS. I took special pity on mortals, but was not held to merit it myself; instead I have been disciplined in this merciless way, a sight to bring disgrace on Zeus. (228-241)

When Zeus wanted to destroy humans, he, Prometheus, felt compassion toward them and protected them. Then, in Prometheus's view, Zeus compounded his earlier lack of compassion by dishing out this totally unfair punishment against Prometheus. If Prometheus thinks this brings "disgrace on Zeus," does that mean he thinks Zeus doesn't deserve compassion from others?

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