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Metamorphoses
Ovid

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Bk VI:267-312 Niobe's daughters are killed: Her fate.

The rumour of trouble, the people's sorrow, and the tears of her own family, confirming sudden disaster to the mother, left her astounded that the gods could have done it, and angered that they had such power, and dared to use it. Now, she learned that the father, Amphion, driving the iron blade through his heart, had, in dying, ended pain and life together. Alas, how different this Niobe from that Niobe, the one, who a moment ago chased the people from Latona's altar, and made her way through the city with head held high, enviable to her friends, and now more to be pitied by her enemies.  She threw herself on the cold bodies, and without regard for due ceremony, gave all her sons a last kiss. Turning from them she lifted her bruised arms to the sky, and cried out, "Feed your heart, cruel one, Latona, on my pain, feed your heart, and be done! Be done, savage spirit! I am buried seven times. Exult and triumph over your enemy! But where is the victory? Even in my misery I have more than you in your happiness. After so many deaths, I still outdo you!"
     
She spoke, and the twang of a taut bowstring sounded, terrifying all of them, except Niobe. Pain gave her courage. The sisters, with black garments, and loosened hair, were standing by their brothers' bodies. One, grasping at an arrow piercing her side, falling, fainted in death beside her brother's face. A second, attempting to comfort her grieving mother, fell silent, and was bent in agony with a hidden wound. She pressed her lips together, but life had already fled. One fell trying in vain to run, and her sister fell across her. One tried to hide, while another trembled in full view. Now six had been dealt death, suffering their various wounds: the last remained. The mother, with all her robes and with her body, protected her, and cried out, "Leave me just one, the youngest! I only ask for one, the youngest of all!" While she prayed, she, for whom she prayed, was dead. Childless, she sat among the bodies of her sons, her daughters, and her husband, frozen in grief.
     
The breeze stirs not a hair, the colour of her cheeks is bloodless, and her eyes are fixed motionless in her sad face: nothing in that likeness is alive. Inwardly her tongue is frozen to the solid roof of her mouth, and her veins cease their power to throb. Her neck cannot bend, nor her arms recall their movement, nor her feet lead her anywhere. Inside, her body is stone. Yet she weeps, and, enclosed in a powerful whirlwind, she is snatched away to her own country: there, set on a mountain top, she wears away, and even now tears flow from the marble.
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