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for we have found a champion among us who can win the golden fleece."

And Æetes bit his lips, for he fancied that they had fled away by night; but he could not go back from his 5 promise, so he gave them the serpents' teeth. Then he called for his chariot and his horses, and sent heralds through all the town; and all the people went out with him to the dreadful war god's field. And there Æetes sat upon his throne, with his warriors on each hand, thou10 sands and tens of thousands, clothed from head to foot in steel-chain mail. And the people and the women crowded to every window and bank and wall, while the Greeks stood together, a mere handful in the midst of that great host. And Chalciope was there, and Argus, trembling, 15 and Medea, wrapped closely in her veil; but Æetes did not know that she was muttering cunning spells between her lips.

Then Jason cried, "Fulfill your promise, and let your fiery bulls come forth." Then Eetes bade open the gates, 20 and the magic bulls leapt out. Their brazen hoofs rang upon the ground, and their nostrils sent out sheets of flame, as they rushed with lowered heads upon Jason; but he never flinched a step. The flame of their breath swept round him, but it singed not a hair of his head ; 25 and the bulls stopped short and trembled, when M began her spell.

Then Jason sprang upon the nearest, and seized him

by the horn; and up and down they wrestled, till the bull fell on his knees; for the heart of the brute died within him, and his mighty limbs were loosed, beneath the steadfast eye of that dark witch maiden, and the magic whisper of her lips.

So both the bulls were tamed and yoked; and Jason bound them to the plow, and goaded them onward with his lance, till he had plowed the sacred field.

-CHARLES KINGSLEY: The Greek Heroes.

ell, an ancient measurement of about a yard; bat'tle ments, walls; spells, magic words; an oint', to rub with salve or oil; cham'pi on, a protector.

1. Tell in your own words all the tasks that must be performed to win the golden fleece. 2. How high was the wall-nine ells? 3. What enchantment did Medea work; compare her spell with that wrought by her sister Circe upon Ulysses' companions. 4. Tell how Jason and his comrades tested the magic ointment.

Sentence Study.-Rewrite, keeping the thought, but expressing it more briefly:

1. Medea, daughter of the king, was versed in magic and practiced the art of enchantment.

2. She made up her mind to aid Jason in his search for the golden fleece.

3. The fleece was concealed in a wood of dense and dark foliage, and was guarded by a dragon, huge in size and terrible of aspect.

4. No mortal man could reach it by his own strength alone, unaided by the gods or unassisted by magic.

5. Jason had many labors to perform, labors so filled with danger that only a man of the greatest courage would have dared undertake them.




AND all the Greeks shouted; but Eetes bit his lips with rage; for the half of Jason's work was over, and the sun was yet high in heaven. Then Jason took the serpents' teeth and sowed them, and waited what would befall. 5 But Medea looked at him and at his helmet, lest he should forget the lesson she had taught.

And every furrow heaved and bubbled, and out of every clod rose a man. Out of the earth they rose by thousands, each clad from head to foot in steel, and drew their swords 10 and rushed on Jason, where he stood in the middle alone.

Then the Greeks grew pale with fear for him; but Æetes laughed a bitter laugh. "See! if I had not warriors enough already round me, I could call them out 15 of the bosom of the earth."

But Jason snatched off his helmet, and hurled it into the thickest of the throng. And blind madness came upon them, suspicion, hate, and fear; and one cried to his fellow, "Thou didst strike me!" and another, "Thou art 20 Jason; thou shalt die!" So fury seized those earth-born phantoms, and each turned his hand against the rest; and they fought and were never weary, till they all lay dead upon the ground. Then the magic furrows opened, and

the kind earth took them home into her breast; and the grass grew up all green above them, and Jason's work was done.

Then the Greeks rose and shouted, and Jason cried, "Lead me to the fleece this moment, before the sun goes 5 down."

But Eetes thought: "He has conquered the bulls; and sown and reaped the deadly crop. Who is this who is proof against all magic? He may kill the serpent yet." So he delayed, and sat taking counsel with his princes, till 10 the sun went down and all was dark. Then he bade a herald cry: "Every man to his home for to-night. To-morrow we will meet these heroes, and speak about the golden fleece."

Then he turned and looked at Medea. "This is your 15 doing, false witch maid! You have helped these yellowhaired strangers, and brought shame upon your father and yourself!" Medea shrank and trembled, and her face grew pale with fear; and Æetes knew that she was guilty, and whispered, "If they win the fleece, you die!"

But the Greeks marched toward their ship, growling like lions cheated of their prey; for they saw that etes meant to mock them, and to cheat them out of all their toil. And they said, "Let us go to the grove together, and take the fleece by force." And one rash prince cried, "Let us 25 draw lots who shall go in first; for while the dragon is devouring one, the rest can slay him, and carry off the



fleece in peace." But Jason held them back, though he praised them; for he hoped for Medea's help.

And after a while Medea came trembling, and wept a long while before she spoke. And at last: "My end is 5 come, and I must die; for my father has found out that I have helped you. You he would kill if he dared; but he will not harm you, because you have been his guests. Go then, go, and remember poor Medea when you are far away across the sea."

But all the heroes cried, "If you die, we die with you; for without you we cannot win the fleece, and home we will not go without it, but fall here fighting to the last man."


"You need not die," said Jason. "Flee home with 15 us across the sea. Show us first how to win the fleece; for you can do it. Why else are you the priestess of the grove? Show us but how to win the fleece, and come with us, and you shall be my queen, and rule over the rich princes of the Greeks, in my country by the sea."

Medea wept, and hid her face in her hands; for her heart yearned after her sisters and her playfellows and the home where she was brought up as a child. But at last she looked up at Jason, and spoke between her sobs:

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25 Must I leave my home and my people, to wander with strangers across the sea? The lot is cast, and I must endure it. I will show you how to win the golden fleece.

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