CHORUS. Hi! Epops! do you hear me?Aristophanes, "The Birds"
EPOPS. What's the matter?
CHORUS. Take them off to dine well and call your mate, the melodious Procné, whose songs are worthy of the Muses; she will delight our leisure moments.
PISTHETAERUS. Oh! I conjure you, accede to their wish; for this delightful bird will leave her rushes at the sound of your voice; for the sake of the gods, let her come here, so that we may contemplate the nightingale.
EPOPS. Let it be as you desire. Come forth, Procné, show yourself to these strangers.
PISTHETAERUS. Oh! great Zeus! what a beautiful little bird! what a dainty form! what brilliant plumage!
EUELPIDES. Do you know how dearly I should like to split her legs for her?
PISTHETAERUS. She is dazzling all over with gold, like a young girl.
EUELPIDES. Oh! how I should like to kiss her!
PISTHETAERUS. Why, wretched man, she has two little sharp points on her beak.
EUELPIDES. I would treat her like an egg, the shell of which we remove before eating it; I would take off her mask and then kiss her pretty face.
EPOPS. Let us go in.
PISTHETAERUS. Lead the way, and may success attend us.
CHORUS. Lovable golden bird, whom I cherish above all others, you, whom I associate with all my songs, nightingale, you have come, you have come, to show yourself to me and to charm me with your notes. Come, you, who play spring melodies upon the harmonious flute, lead off our anapaests.
Weak mortals, chained to the earth, creatures of clay as frail as the foliage of the woods, you unfortunate race, whose life is but darkness, as unreal as a shadow, the illusion of a dream, hearken to us, who are immortal beings, ethereal, ever young and occupied with eternal thoughts, for we shall teach you about all celestial matters; you shall know thoroughly what is the nature of the birds, what the origin of the gods, of the rivers, of Erebus, and Chaos; thanks to us, Prodicus will envy you your knowledge.