© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Prometheus Bound

Prometheus Bound

by Aeschylus

Man and the Natural World Quotes Page 1

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

POWER. We have reached the land at the furthest bounds of earth, the Scythian marshes, a wilderness where no mortals live. (1-11)

Way to open the play, right? Right from these first lines, we know that the play takes place on a remote part of the world—someplace so inhospitable that no one can live there.

Quote #2

HEPHAESTUS. Here you will hear no mortal voice, see no mortal form; you will lose the bloom of your skin, grilled by the brilliant flames of the sun; welcome to you will be Night of the gaudy apparel when she hides the daylight, but welcome too the return of the sun to disperse the early morning frost; and you will be continually worn down by the burden of one or another kind of suffering, for he who can relieve it is not yet born. This is what you have gained for your human-loving ways. (18-28)

Here, nature itself seems to be part of Prometheus's punishment, (so maybe one of the these should be "Gods and the Natural World"?), but also his relief. Without other gods or humans to rely on, Prometheus has to look to the natural world for healing.

Quote #3

PROMETHEUS. I did: I stopped mortals foreseeing their death.

CHORUS. What remedy did you find for that affliction?

PROMETHEUS. I planted blind hopes within them.

CHORUS. That was a great benefit you gave to mortals.

PROMETHEUS. And what is more, I gave them fire.

CHORUS. You mean those short-lived beings now possess flaming fire? (248-256)

The Chorus seems to see humans as simply part of the natural world, "short-lived being" that just, you know, die all the time. But now they've got fire—watch out, Olympus.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement