The Tale of the Love of Kherei and Kalliroi
The action of the first of the surviving Greek novels dates back to the 5th century. BC. e. – the time of the highest power of the Persian kingdom, the Peloponnesian conflict, Greco-Persian wars and many other historical events.
The beautiful Kalliroya, the daughter of the famous Syracusan strategist Hermocrates (historical face), and the young Hereey fell in love. And although Kalliroe’s father was against this marriage, the side of lovers accepted… The People’s Assembly of Syracuse (an unusual item from the modern point of view!) And the wedding took place.
But the happiness of the newlyweds was short-lived. The intrigues of the rejected suitors (and there were many of them at the divinely beautiful Kalliroi) led to the fact that the jealous by nature of Kherey suspected his wife of treason. A quarrel is over, which ended tragically. For a long time lost consciousness Kallirou native
take for the dead and bury alive…
Rich burial tempted by the sea robber Feron. Already waking up by the time of a deep faint Kalliroya (terrible awakening in her own grave!) Falls into captivity to pirates who take her to the Asia Minor city of Miletus and there they sell into slavery. Her lord is a recently widowed, noble and wealthy Dionysius (“… the chief man in Miletus and throughout Ionia”).
Dionysius is not only rich, but also noble. He passionately falls in love with Kalliroya and asks a fine slave to become his wife.
But even the thought of this is repugnant to the captive Syracusian, for she still loves only Kharya and is also expecting a child.
In this critical situation (the position of the slave woman whom the master wants to make mistress), the clever Kalliroya agrees with false pretenses after a long hesitation, but asks for postponement under various plausible pretexts…
Meanwhile, in Siracusa, a robbed tomb with no Kalliroi was discovered. And expeditions to Libya, Italy, Ionia are sent for her search…
And here in the sea a boat
with mourning objects – ornaments from the robbed tomb was detained. Immediately there lies half-dead Feron – the leader of pirates. Brought to Syracuse, he under torture confesses to the deed. The People’s Assembly unanimously condemns him to death: “After Feron, when he was being taken away, there was a large crowd of people, he was crucified before the grave of Kalliroi: from the cross he looked at the sea along which he was carrying the prisoner daughter Hermokrata…”
And then from Syracuse in Miletus the embassy headed by the Kharyem is sent – to rescue Kalliroya from slavery. Having reached the coast of Ionia and descended from the ship, Kherey comes to the temple of Aphrodite – the culprit and his happiness and misfortunes. And then he suddenly sees the image of Kalliroi (brought to the temple by the enamored Dionysius). The younger priestess reports: Kalliroya became the wife of the Ionian ruler and their common mistress.
… Suddenly, a large group of barbarians attack a peaceful ship of Syracusans. Almost all of them died. Only Kherey and his faithful friend Poliharm were taken prisoner and sold into slavery.
All this is not a coincidence. Fock, a faithful economist Dionysius, seeing the Syracusan ship with the embassy, realized what it would threaten his master. And sent a guard detachment to the ship that arrived.
… And Kalliroya sees a captive husband in a dream. And, unable to restrain himself any longer, tells Dionysius that she had a husband who probably died.
In the end, the economist Fock confesses to the deed: the bodies of the Syracusans have long rocked on the bloody waves. Thinking that her beloved is dead too, Kalliroya exclaims woefully: “The infamous sea! In Miletus you brought Kherei to his death, and me for sale!”
… Delicate and noble Dionysius advises Kallieroy to arrange the burial of the burial (the Greeks did so for unknown where the dead – they built an empty tomb “cenotaph”). And on the high bank near the harbor of Miletus a grave is erected…
But Kalliroya can not recover and at least calm down a little. And in the meantime, from her heavenly beauty, men even faint. So it happened, for example, with the satyr Mithridates of Kari, who saw Kalliroya while visiting Dionysius.
Namely, to Mithridates, Kherey and Polykharm fall into slavery. And – a new twist of fate: for imaginary participation in the rebellion of slaves they face a crucifixion on the cross. But by a lucky coincidence, the faithful Polyharm gets the opportunity to talk with Mithridates, and Khereya is literally removed from the cross at the last moment…
The satrap confirms what they already know: Calliroia is the wife of Dionysius and they even had a son. But he (like everyone else) does not know that the child is not from the Ionian ruler, but from the Kharyo. This is also unknown to the unhappy father who exclaims to the satrap: “I beg you, Vladyka, return my cross to me.” Forcing me to live after such a message, you torture me even more cruelly than the cross! ”
… Kerelye writes a letter to Kallieroy, but it falls directly into the hands of Dionysius. He does not believe that Kherey is alive: it’s supposedly the treacherous Mithridates wants to embarrass Kalliroe’s peace with false news about her husband.
But the circumstances are such that Artaxerxes himself, the great king of Persia, summons Dionysius with Kallioroy and Mithridates for a fair trial…
So, Dionysius and Kalliroy go to Babylon to Artaxerxes at the king’s rate. There, too, Mitridat rushes through Armenia in a short way.
On the way the satraps of all the tsarist regions are greeted with honor and accompanied by Dionysius and his beautiful companion, the rumor of the unsurpassed beauty of which flies ahead of her.
Excited, of course, and Persian beauties. And not without reason. For even Artaxerxes at first sight falls in love with Calliro…
The day of the royal court comes. And Mithridates lays out his main trump card – the living Kherey, which he brought with him. And it turns out that Dionysius wants to marry his wife! Or slave?!
But the tsar hesitates with the decision, postponing the trial from day to day, as more and more falls in love with Kalliroya. And his chief eunuch reports this to the Syracusan. But she pretends that she did not understand, does not believe in the possibility of such sacrilege: with the living queen Sostratus, the king makes her such an indecent proposal?! No, the eunuch definitely confuses something: he misunderstood Artaxerxes.
By the way, it was Sostratus who was entrusted by the tsar to patronize Kalliroya and, thanks to the wise and tactful behavior of the latter, the women managed to even make friends.
… And the desperate Kherey was more than once going to end his life. But every time he is saved by the faithful Polyharm.
Meanwhile, the senior eunuch of Artaxerxes openly begins to threaten Kallieroy, who does not agree to respond to the feeling of the great king…
“But all calculations and all sorts of amiable conversations quickly changed Fate, which was the occasion for the development of entirely new events.” The king received a report that Egypt had fallen away from him, who had collected immense military power… “The
troops of the Persian king, urgently stepping out of Babylon, pass the Euphrates and go towards the Egyptians. As part of the Persian army and the detachment of Dionysius, who wants to win the favor of Artaxerxes on the battlefield.
Kalliroy also travels in the numerous royal retinue, while Herei is sure that she stayed in Babylon, and is looking for her there.
But there is no limit to the deceit of the men in love with Culliro. Specially trained (and prudently left in Babylon), the man told Kherey that as a reward for his faithful service the tsar had already given Kalliroya to Dionysius’s wife. Although this was not, the king himself still hoped to win the favor of the Syracuse beauty.
… And at this time the Egyptian took the city out of town. And desperate Kherey, to whom freedom was returned, having collected a group of devoted compatriots, moves on to the Egyptian side. As a result of a brilliant military operation, he takes possession of the impenetrable Phoenician city of Tire…
Artaxerxes decides to accelerate the movement of his huge army and, in order to further move light, the whole suite with Sostrata at the head (and with it Kalliroya) leaves in the fortress on the island of Arad.
A victorious Egyptian, conquered by the military talents of Kharya, appoints him a navarish, putting the whole fleet at the head.
… But military happiness is changeable. The Persian king throws new and new troops into battle. And all decided the lightning strike of the detachment of Dionysius, who kills the Egyptian and brings his head to Artaxerxes. In reward for this, the king allows him to finally become the husband of Kalliroi…
And Kherey meanwhile defeated the Persians at sea. But neither one nor the other does not know about mutual successes and defeats and everyone considers himself a complete winner.
… Navarh Kherey with his fleet besieged Arad, not yet knowing that there – his Kalliroya. And Aphrodite finally relented on them: long-suffering spouses meet.
They spend the whole night in hot embraces and tell each other about everything that happened to them during the time of separation. And Kherey begins to regret that he betrayed the noble (as he believes) Persian king. But what to do next?! And, having conferred with colleagues, Херей makes an optimum decision: to swim home in native Сиракузы! And the tsarina Sostratus with all his entourage, Kherey with honor (and with reliable protection) sends to the ship to King Artaxerxes with a letter, where everything explains and thanks for everything. And Kalliroya wrote words of gratitude to the noble Dionysius, in order to somehow comfort him.
… From the shore of Syracuse Harbor residents are anxiously watching the approach of an unknown fleet. Among the silent observers is the strategist Hermocrates.
On the deck of the flagship there is a magnificent tent, And when the canopy finally rises, those standing on the pier suddenly see Kherei and Kalliroya!
The joy of the desperate for many months of the unknown parents and all fellow citizens is boundless. And the People’s Assembly demands that Kherey tell about everything that they and Kalliroya experienced together and singly. His story makes people present with the most contradictory feelings – both tears and joy. But in the end, there are more joys…
Three hundred Greek soldiers, selflessly fighting under the leadership of Kherey, get the honorable right to become citizens of Syracuse.
And Kherey and Kalliroya publicly thank the loyal Polyharm for their unlimited devotion and support in the grievous trials. Sadly only that their son remained in Miletus with Dionysius. But everyone believes:
Over time, the boy will arrive with honor in Syracuse.
Kalliroya goes to the temple of Aphrodite and, embracing the legs of the goddess and kissing them, says: “Thank you, Aphrodite, you once again let me see Kherei in Syracuse, where I saw him as a girl at your own will.” I do not grumble at you for the suffering I experienced, Mistress: they were destined for me by Destiny, I beg you: never again separate me from the Kharya, but grant us to live happily together and die both of us simultaneously. “