Here is a story straight out of Roman mythology.

Echo was a beautiful nymph and Diana's favorite but like some women she talked way too much. One day Juno was looking for her husband and Echo distracted her while the nymphs got away. When Juno discovered what Echo was doing, she said, "You shall forfeit the use of that tongue with which you have cheated me, except for that one purpose you are so fond of -- talking back. You shall still have the last word but no power to speak first."

Echo spotted a beautiful youth, Narcissus, one day running through the mountains and decided to follow him. She desperately wanted to talk to him but waited for him to speak first. After being separated from his companions, Narcissus one day asked, "Who's here?"

Echo replied, "Here."

After looking around and seeing no one, he called out, "Come."

"Come," she replied.

He then replied, "Let us join one another." Echo said the same words and ran to him. She threw her arms around him but he backed away saying, "I would rather die than you should have me!" In vain, she said, "Have me." He left her and she ran into the woods to hide her embarrassment.

Since then she lived in caves and among mountain cliffs. She faded away from grief until she completely disappeared. The only thing that was left of her was her voice. Ever since then she still replies to anyone who calls to her. Echo still has the last word.

To read more about Echo and Narcissus:

*Norder, Dan (2005). Echo and Narcissus. Retrieved on August 5, 2005 from the MythologyWeb website:


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