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"Death Is The Veil Which Those Who Live Call Life"

(Magill's Quotations in Context)

Context: Bound by Jupiter to a rock in the mountains because he refuses to tell the tyrant when he would be overthrown, Prometheus has learned that love is superior to hate, but he still heroically refuses to aid the evil king of the gods. However, the time that Jupiter fears finally comes, and Demogorgon overthrows the monarch, leaving the throne vacant because if any deity seizes it, he might become a tyrant. This heavenly revolt is the sign of a new age of peaceful anarchy during which happiness will come to gods and men alike. Following the fall of Jupiter, Hercules releases Prometheus, who plans to discover how he can further help his beloved race of men, how he can help them escape misery and despair. After he concludes his speech of unlimited love, Asia, the spirit of love and universal brotherhood, and Earth, the great mother, talk of death, the major cause of man's unhappiness. Earth tells why men should not fear it by using the Platonic notion that what men call life is really death, because the body enslaves the soul:

Oh, mother! wherefore speak the name of death?
Cease they to love, and move, and breathe, and speak,
Who die?
It would avail not to reply:
Thou art immortal, and this tongue is known
But to the uncommunicating dead.
Death is the veil which those who live call life:
They sleep, and it is lifted: . . .