dedicates himself to my care.
Neither in you nor in you have I gathered
any consolation or compassion;
and since the affections of
one who lauds and one who cries are equals,
as of now the ribbon belongs to neither.
SILVIO: May it please Love, since in being
offended you employ yourself in insulting me,
that whoever you may love, might see you as
whiny and loathsome.
FEBO: This my voice shall not ask of
the heavens. It is better that
you loathe in this way, as it is
here what my fierce sorrows want most,
that in exchange for you loving no one,
you might abhor me.
Oh, Sirene! Tell me, what will I do,
if there is something you have found out
that could give me some relief in this
sea of my misfortunes?
SIRENE: Just one thing.
FEBO: What is it?
SIRENE: Forgetting about it.
FEBO: Without a doubt you have seen
my desires to be hopeless,
since the prescription is forgetting,
which is love’s sepulcher.
SIRENE: I would do wrong if I did not
tell you what I know, since you have
confided your pain to my heart.
Echo cannot love you.
And her disdain has not been
so general that she has not
prostrated herself before…
FEBO: Oh, Sirene! You have done a bad thing…
SIRENE: In doing what?
FEBO: In having told me that.
SIRENE: Haven’t you asked me for it?
FEBO: Yes. But you should not have
told it to me all the same, since
whatever the jealous man wanted
to know, he really did not want to know.
And since it was not in my power to
not ask you, it was in yours not to tell me.
SIRENE: Even though, Febo, you give me
this lesson too late, I propose that I
repay you for it with another.
Never desire to learn what is hidden
from a woman, if you must regret hearing it.
FEBO: Flowers of this pleasant valley,
trunks of these tall cliffs,
birds of this gentle wind,
brutes of these haughty woodlands,
shepherds of these fertile shores,
flocks of these ? folds,
beauties of this rolling countryside,
crystals of these flowing rivers,
all of you were witnesses
to my fortunate love,
may you now also be witnesses
to my unfortunate jealousy.
Bato and Narcissus enter.
BATO: Where are you going?
NARCISSUS: I do not know what it is,
but no matter how hard
I resist, I cannot any longer.
I am going back to see that beauty
that I left behind.
BATO: But she is no longer here.
NARCISSUS: Tell me, my shepherd friend,
(to Febo) who rests upon your staff seeming
so arrested and confused,
if you have seen Echo, the honor
of these mountains, anywhere
throughout these valleys?
FEBO: Answer to this staff of holly,
(threatening him dyed in your purple hue.
with his staff) Well, no, I ought not make
you unhappy because your love
makes you glad. Live, arrogant
and vain young man,
as I do not want to take
vengeance on anyone but myself.
You are not to blame for loving
the one who loved you,
and I am for having loved
the one who loathed me.
NARCISSUS: What is this, Bato?
BATO: What do you expect, if
you inadvertently ask a man
who adores Echo about her?
NARCISSUS: What a cold venom have you given me in
that word running straight from
my ear to my heart,
so varied that at once
I am scorched and I shiver, alternating
between burning ice and freezing fire?
BATO: You gave as much to Febo.
NARCISSUS: And tell me, Bato my friend,
is Febo loved by Echo?
BATO: No, she has always
NARCISSUS: You have lifted half the weight
from my senses, so that
though the ice burns, it is made tepid,
and though the fire freezes, it is made warm.
ECHO: It is better that my pain
be professed at once.
Narcissus, I come in search of you.
NARCISSUS: Seeing that she comes looking for me,
(aside) took away the other half,
since had she not come in search of me,
I would have gone for her.
How can I serve you?
ECHO: By listening to me.
(aside) I will sing it to him,
the better to oblige him with my voice.
BATO: I want
to give Liríope warning
of these extreme expressions of love,
since I am not strong enough to resist them.
ECHO (singing): Most handsome Narcissus,
who brings harshness to
these pleasant valleys of the
woodlands in which you were born,
listen to my sorrows,
as they should oblige you –
not because they are mine,
but only because they are sorrows.
Love knows with how much shame
I come to speak with you, and
I neither doubt nor fear
that you also know it,
if you pay attention to the color
rising in my cheeks to give me away,
the violet blush and the pale whiteness
alternating moment by moment,
because in each breath,
which are effectively only air,
my face is changed like a
chameleon of love.
Since the very first day
I went looking for you in the wilderness
and I was the first to find you
in its lonely retreats,
my life surrendered its liberties
to your beauty,
your strangeness making a charm
for my arrogance,
so that, even though the diamond
of your heart was so coarsely uncut,
it offered a glimpse of your
I am Echo, the most sumptuous
shepherdess of these valleys.
Beautiful my misfortunes
could say, because,
in the worship of the altars
in the temple of Love,
few lamps burn of those
both beautiful and happy.
That entire ocean of fleeces
is mine which, with its woolen waves,
ebbs and flows
from that tall rock to
this green riverbank,
grazing among emeralds and
It is all mine.
No shepherds tend to it
who do not live on my wages both
attentively and loyally.
I offer all of it at your feet;
and do not imagine because
my affections come to beg you today
that they are born,
in my practice,
of any habit of frivolity:
knowing, handsome youth,
that nothing can oblige me
except to be your wife,
but rather to declare my love,
so that you have in me someone
always firm and steadfast,
a soul that would adore you,
a heart that would love you,
a faith that would laud you,
a knot that would wrap around you,
attention that would serve you,
love that would shower you with gifts,
desire that would oblige you,
concern that would please you.
And if these submissions
cannot oblige you,
sorrowful, confused, blind,
mute, captivated, cowardly,
you will see devote myself
to my feelings so much
that my lamenting complaints.
the air mingled with my cries
because the enamored Echo
has been transformed into air,
NARCISSUS: Your intensity had created
experiences within my heart,
all the more to your advantage.
It is bad, divine Echo, that you have
declared to me your love,
since I so clearly deduce that,
my free will laid before you,
I now would have told you of
my own love for you
if you had kept silent about yours.
In searching for you my vexed sorrow
brings you grief comparable to your own,
with which, the tables already turned,
you may see the distance that exists between
begging and being begged.
Without taking notice of fate,
my love came to you already conquered.
What I see in good favor
is so much more than I used to see despised.
In this way, do not tell me of your love,
nor hope in your lifetime to see that
your light has scorched me, since with
the knowledge that you love me.
I will live happily.
ECHO: Listen, wait, pause, take
NARCISSUS: Let go of my hand.
As she grasps his hand, Silvio enters.
SILVIO: What is it that my eyes see here?
ECHO: Listen to me.
NARCISSUS: It will be in vain.
ECHO: Oh, Narcissus, my love, my treasure!
NARCISSUS: I will not hear you.
SILVIO: How is it that I suffer my
offenses in this way?
NARCISSUS: Leave me be.
ECHO: Do you run from me?
SILVIO: Who ever saw greater misfortune?
ECHO: May the heavens avenge me
SILVIO: If you ask that the heavens
avenge you, – how cruel! –
my torment can request
with greater sorrow that
they avenge me on both you and him.
I suppose, vixen, that
he offended you here,
and since both of you together offended me,
I will avenge myself on him, since
I cannot avenge myself on you.
Upstart of a young man,
who alone from this eminent
wilderness increases my rage,
son of the wind, you descend,
and even though it is not your fault
that Echo comes to love you
but rather hers, and even though
I have to partly be grateful to you,
seeing how much good fortune
you spurn as your own master,
how far outside the realm of reason it is
that the laws of jealousy must order
that he who is beloved dies and
not the one who loves.
Without any doubt it was a woman
who first introduced those laws,
since they condemn the instrument
and not the one who does the offending.
In this way, having already been accepted,
that the grievances that women cause us
be avenged on men,
I am forced to avenge myself on you
even though it must pain me
that you are such a tender young man
that in vanquishing you I do nothing.
ECHO: Silvio, look…! I am dead!
NARCISSUS: Oh, my unhappiness!
ECHO: I warned you…!
She puts herself in front of him.
SILVIO: However much you defend him,
you irritate me to kill him all the more.
NARCISSUS: Do not defend me anymore.
Leave it so that he meet my arms,
since what valor there is in my arms
that will know, Echo, how to defeat him.
The two men fight, and Narcissus falls.
SILVIO: How is that, since you are already
at my feet? Die happily,
since it is the crime for lovers
to be happy.
He goes to take the dagger in hand and finish him.
Febo enters and intervenes, stopping him.
FEBO: Hold it! Do not kill him!
SILVIO: You will stop it?
FEBO: It is only because you do not
have news of my cause for doing so.
Febo, if you had them,
you would help me kill him.
FEBO: I would not, since I save him
knowing rather than not knowing.
Being loved by someone
does not merit dying.
SILVIO: Oh, what pitiful jealousy you have,
that you do not desire a million deaths
on the man whom your lady loves!
FEBO: On the contrary, my jealousy is noble,
as it today seeks to open
the world’s eyes to the error
suffered on that part.
Wanting what I want,
almost coming to be flattery,
since it proves my good taste.
Being fortunate in being loved
is a boon of good luck.
Why must I make unfortunate
he whom the heavens made more fortunate?
Aside from that, all that is the pleasure
of my lady is always so sacred to me
(although my taste seem strange,
whether I err in this or get it right),
that I have to defend it,
in order to not give her the sorrow
of offending that which she loves.
SILVIO: In love, Febo, there is no
sophistry. And be warned that
in jealousy there is never nobility.
A man feels what he feels.
And so I must kill him
because she favors him,
even though I may have to appreciate
the fact that he scorns Echo.
FEBO: He scorns Echo?
FEBO: Now I too will give him his death,
because she whom I love
must not be a man who despises her.
SILVIO: Now I will defend him,
being aware that my love
is thus obliged.
FEBO: Oh, what a despicable love you have,
that you want to kill him who Echo loves,
and save him who despises her!
And thus I am obliged to avenge her
of this rebuff.
SILVIO: I must keep it by him.
FEBO: Let he who wins follow
his own opinion.
Febo and Silvio begin to fight.
ECHO: What great disorder do I see?
Shepherds of this mountain,
come bestow your help on me,
halting the misfortune that
now transpires before my eyes.
Anteo, Sileno, Bato, Liríope, and the others enter.
ANTEO: What is this? Silvio, Febo,
control yourselves now that I am here.
SILENO: Narcissus, you already have a fight
in the valley?
NARCISSUS: I have two, as two enemies here
are trying to kill me.
LIRÍOPE: With what hurry the fates
do declare to us that you have
your risk in a beauty!
BATO: I, without being an astrologer,
said it, because “Who does not
always have his risk in a beauty
a thousand times over, or even
in a hag?
SILENO: What is all this about,
ECHO: Only about being unfortunate.
ANTEO: What is all this about, Silvio?
SILVIO: It’s me being unhappy. Febo,
you tell them about it.
LIRÍOPE: What is all this about, Febo?
FEBO: I don’t know. Narcissus can
SILENO: Narcissus, what is all this about?
NARCISSUS: I don’t know what’s
happening to me.
ANTEO: Bato, since you went to call for us,
tell us as clearly as you can
what this is all about.
BATO: Being unfortunate. That’s
what those people will tell you.
SILENO: Let us follow them, so that they
may not come see each other again
before they are made to be friends.
ANTEO: Let us go, even though it appears
to me that it will be impossible
to be friends when a lady intervenes:
friendships that survive jealousies
have rarely been seen.
LIRÍOPE: Heavens, since you are already
giving me such clear indications
that the danger that your stars
predicted for Narcisso
lies in Echo’s beauty,
give me the courage to remedy
the threats before the executions begin.
Make useful that which I have learned
so that the harm is corrected:
before it happens, I must put
a thousand obstacles in its path,
if – arrogant, daring, and intense –
I know how to disrupt all of the orbs
of that celestial machine,
my prodigies seeing it
fall from its regular axes.
Febo, Silvio, and Anteo enter.
ANTEO: You all must do this for me,
since you have no reason
not to be friends.
FEBO: Little do you know what it is
to love deeply, since you say
that the two of us have no reason
not to be friends when we both
love the same scornful woman.
SILVIO: How is it possible for a man to
be friends with one who loves
who he loves, his jealousy filled
with rage over it?
ANTEO: Although I understand little of love’s
heartache, it seems to me that when
you see that both of you are equally
detested and neither is preferred,
you can be friends, since that which
obliges such jealous feelings in any lover
is the fact that he wins the hope or desire
that you lose. With neither of you having
more favor or hope than the other,
to want to work out the duel is
more than what the law commands.
FEBO: That is a good enough reason
not to quarrel with him,
but not enough to be his friend.
SILVIO: Febo has answered well
in that friendship is one thing,
but competition is another.
ANTEO: Well, according to that distinction,
I am content with you not being
enemies, if you do not want to be
FEBO: I regretfully give you my word.
SILVIO: I do as well.
But I warn that the larger
just because, Anteo, I give my word
with respect to Febo, who is
equal with me in my sorrows,
I do not with respect to Narcissus.
If Echo loves him, I have to avenge
myself of her on him.
FEBO: And I, but not because she appears to adore him,
which is his good fortune and not his fault;
instead, because he disdains her,
since I have to see that no one treats badly
the one I love the most.
ANTEO: Before talking to the two of you,
I spoke with the same young man you speak of,
and he offered to prevent any further occasions
in which he displeases one of you,
either by scorning her or loving her.
And since the three of you are ageed on
this count, note that your competition
is now my charge, and see that
he who breaks their word will
have to quarrel with me later.
SILVIO: Who ever arrived at greater misfortune
than the handsome youth who
came face to face with disappointment?
FEBO: Who ever arrived at greater happiness
than the lover who came to have
a failed love affair?
SILVIO: Well, he who was deceived
lived happily, because
it is one thing to not to know
and another to suffer.
FEBO: Well, as much as the deceived one
loved, he was unfortunate, because
there is no evil like he who kills
in secret without being known.
SILVIO: Oh, he who, being deceived, loved
all his life…
FEBO: Oh, he who had this same disappointment
that he had before…
SILVIO: So that the pain is
FEBO: So that the cruel pain had
always been felt…
SILVIO: That in a love…
FEBO: A faith…
SILVIO: There is nothing like not knowing it!
FEBO: There is nothing like knowing it!
ECHO: Silvio and Febo are here.
How much I regret that I must
hear once more
their tiring competition!
FEBO: Echo is what my eyes see.
SILVIO: Echo is what I see.
FEBO: Give me the courage, feelings,
to stop seeing her.
SILVIO: So as not to talk to her,
moans, make an effort.
FEBO: Echo, may the gods
watch over you.
SILVIO: May the heavens give you life.
ECHO: How is it that the two of them, without
speaking to me, walk away in this fashion?
Who will believe that I regretted finding them
here when I arrived, since
I was just afraid that they would talk to me
of their love, and now afterwards I feel bad that
they absented themselves without mentioning it?
But what a thing, what a thing if in effect
the woman who has forgotten the most suitors
has most loathed them,
even the complaints of that which she disdains
sound good, which is a ceremonious vanity
to see oneself wanted, one that is not appreciated,
annd later, it is missed.
Bato and Narcissus enter.
BATO: Where are you going?
NARCISSUS: I am going hunting in the woodlands,
Bato, since I want to see if with
absence I can better defeat this cruel passion,
because in all my life I am not to
listen to her nor talk to her,
since my danger resided within her.
ECHO: Here he comes. What will I do?
NARCISSUS: She is here. Let us flee before
she comes to speak with me.
ECHO: But what is this? Do I doubt
what I have to do? Do I not here
come to feel that the two I detested
left just now without speaking to me?
Well, that which was venom in them
shall be medicine for him.
Take courage, heart.
Prevail at least once.
NARCISSUS: What is you want, Echo?
ECHO: That the heavens give you life.
NARCISSUS: How do you leave without saying
anything more to me?
BATO: By walking on her feet.
NARCISSUS: Does she already not feel the
disappointments I handed her, Bato,
since she gives me no complaints?
BATO: It seems to me that she does not.
NARCISSUS: Who would come to sorry about
the one she came to woo?
BATO: She who courted one who she
was to regret.
ECHO: Is this being in love? Yes.
But, by hiding it and because
Narcissus also judges that I
feel nothing for him, in singing
I want to undo him. If she who sings
scares away all her evils, how is it
that I frighten away what I most want?
NARCISSUS: But what does it matter
that she leaves like this?
BATO: Nothing, if you look
hard at it.
NARCISSUS: It doesn’t matter,
except it matters very much.
BATO: Mind it, and
(Narcissus control your hand.
ECHO: If all is suffering for
(singing within) those who deeply love,
and if there is no happiness
in loving deeply,
loving be damned!
BATO: Amen! But what are you
so annoyed by?
NARCISSUS: By the song.
BATO: You speak well,
that singing is very bad form
for a spurned woman.
NARCISSUS: Let us flee from here, Bato,
since if I hear it again
it will carry me to it.
BATO: You speak beautifully.
Let us go to the woodlands.
ECHO (inside): Lovers be damned!
NARCISSUS: Hold a moment. That voice
is a bugle of love that has
collected all my desires in my ear.
Leaving me behind without paying
attention to me, so ferocious and
so cruel, yet singing so happily and
freely…it is necessary that one feels it.
Come with me, I want to make you
a witness to my protests.
BATO: Well, where must we go?
NARCISSUS: Following her.
BATO: She obliges you now?
NARCISSUS: I don’t know;
but, I am sad to see