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Ο Βασιλεύς Δημήτριος

March 7, 2010
Σαν τον παραίτησαν οι Μακεδόνες,
κι απέδειξαν πως προτιμούν τον Πύρρο
ο βασιλεύς Δημήτριος (μεγάλην είχε
ψυχή) καθόλου -έτσι είπαν-
δεν φέρθηκε ως βασιλεύς. Επήγε
κ’έβγαλε τα χρυσά φορέματά του,
και τα ποδήματά του πέταξε
τα ολοπόρφυρα. Με ρούχα απλά
ντύθηκε γρήγορα και ξέφυγε.
Κάμνοντας όμοια σαν ηθοποϊός
που όταν η παράστασις τελειώσει,
αλλάζει φορεσιά και απέρχεται.

Κ.Καβάφης [1906]

King Dimitrios

When the Macedonians deserted him
and showed they preferred Pyrrhos,
King Dimitrios (a noble soul) didn’t behave
—so they said—
at all like a king.
He took off his golden robes,
threw away his purple buskins,
and quickly dressing himself
in simple clothes, he slipped out—
just like an actor who,
the play over,
changes his costume and goes away..

To listen a recitation of the poem press here

3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 7, 2010 10:14 am

    παραιτώ κάποιον : force someone to resign

    φέρομαι ή φέρνομαι : behave, act ..but also behave behave appropriately to your position ( φέρθηκε σαν άντρας > he behaved as a man)

    επήγε>πήγε : simple past form of the verb πάω / πηγαίνω…(πήγα, πήγες, πήγε etc)…

    ολοπόρφυρα> όλος + πορφύρα : full of purple

    απέρχομαι > απέρχεται: leave, go away ..

  2. Laura Blumenthal permalink
    March 11, 2010 5:46 am

    What is the historical background of this, Glavko?

    • March 11, 2010 7:31 pm

      This one is Demetrius I (Greek: Δημήτριος, 337-283 BC), called Poliorcetes (Greek: Πολιορκητής – “The Besieger”), son of Antigonus I Monophthalmus and Stratonice, was a king of Macedon (294–288 BC). He belonged to the Antigonid dynasty.

      Check that link
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demetrius_I_of_Macedon

      The whole story of that semi-maniac is here
      http://www.attalus.org/old/demetrius1.html

      Hope I was helpful ….

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