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A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Fri Mar 15, 2013 7:49 pm

Paul Derouda wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:I have been listening daily to lectures by Elizabeth Vandiver on Attic Tragedy and Greek Mythology. Vandiver explicitly addresses the question breaking down the barrier between the fictional scenario in the tragic drama and the scenario in the Athenian theater and contemporary culture. She more or less dogmatically asserts that Attic tragedians never crossed that barrier. For this reason I don't think χορὸς in this context refers to the χορὸς in the theater, but rather to a group of singers described in very unflattering terms that represent the Furies. I'm a perennial-first-year-student when it comes to classics so I could have misunderstood what Vandiver was saying.

Yes, probably the calling the Erinyes a chorus here is just metaphorical. But it is a bit funny, when you think that they will actually form the chorus in the last play of the trilogy. I don't think a crossing of the barrier you describe is intended here.

Incidentally, I've seen that barrier crossed several times in Aristophanes' comedies. (Can't give any examples right now). But that's another genre entirely.
On the placement of Ἐρινύων at the end of a though unit larger than a sentence, it seems like postponing a key element in the semantic structure of a complex constituent is a pattern which reappears at different levels of the discourse structure. In other words, the head noun in a noun phrase can be postponed to the end of the phrase, a noun subject can be postponed to the end of sentence, a discourse critical noun can be postponed to the end of a paragraph. By discourse critical noun I mean a noun which is needed to disambiguate the whole paragraph. Ἐρινύων in this context is just such a noun. The phenomenon isn't limited to a noun/substantive but talking about verb placement is a whole different ball game.

I was thinking something along those lines, but couldn't have said it so well...


On Aristophanes' comedies I think Vandiver would totally agree with you. Aristophanes was playing games with the Tragedian tradition and flaunted the rules. I'm rather uncertain about how strict Euripides was about this. I seem to remember Vandiver's focus was on actors making direct reference to someone or something in the theater in a manner such that the fictional frame of reference was broken. I don't have the technical terminology to discuss this clearly.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:10 pm

I hope you are getting better now.

I found an example in Aristophanes' Frogs (274 ff.) where (according to the Loeb edition at least) a character in the play reacts to the public:

Διόνυσος. κατεῖδες οὖν που τοὺς πατραλοίας αὐτόθι
καὶ τοὺς ἐπιόρκους, οὓς ἔλεγεν ἡμῖν;
Ξανθίας. σὺ δ᾽ οὔ;
Διόνυσος. νὴ τὸν Ποσειδῶ 'γωγε, καὶ νυνί γ᾽ ὁρῶ.
ἄγε δὴ τί δρῶμεν;

Dionysos: So, you must have seen those father beaters and perjurers that he told us about.
Xanthias: Didn't you?
Dionysos: Sure I did, by Poseidon; (regarding the spectators) and I can still see them. Well now, what's next?

I can't speak about the Tragedians. I wonder about Euripides' Cyclops, which is a satyr play, would it be different in this regard?
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:38 pm

Paul Derouda wrote:1191-93
ὑμνοῦσι δ᾽ ὕμνον δώμασιν προσήμεναι
πρώταρχον ἄτην, ἐν μέρει δ᾽ ἀπέπτυσαν
εὐνὰς ἀδελφοῦ τῷ πατοῦντι δυσμενεῖς.

"Besitting the chambers of the house, they sing a song of the ruinous folly that first began it all, and one after another they show their abhorrence of the brother's bed that worked harm to him who defiled it." (Sommerstein)

I'm puzzled by the aorist ἀπέπτυσαν that follows a present ὑμνοῦσι - R-T calls it a "dramatic" aorist. Whatever that means. I wonder if this usage here is somehow related to the "gnomic" aorist, maybe the idea is to point out that this is the sort of thing the Erinyes always disapprove of.


Paul,

The verb aspect chosen by an author represents a choice about how to present a certain action/event in the story. The present tense is a marked form used for imperfective action. The singing of the Erinyes is presented as ongoing within the framework of the story. The aorist is an unmarked aspect, all it tells us is that the author had no intention to pointing out anything special about aspect. The action/event is simply affirmed without reference duration or even completion. Some aspectologits would probably argue that completion is a semantic feature of the aorist.

The traditional semantic categories for aroists e.g. gnomic, dramatic make reference to information gleaned from the co-text and context. Were actually talking about context and co-text when we use those terms. The aorist doesn't tell us anything about gnomic, dramatic, rather it simply asserts an event happened.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sat Mar 16, 2013 6:06 pm

Paul Derouda wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:First, if we agree that ἕπομαι takes a dative argument, in that role προτέροισι appears to be a substantive which refers to the content of a previous speech act. Doesn't προτέροισι also play a role in the subordinate clause ἐφημίσω? Perhaps not. Supplying a relative pronoun coreferential with προτέροισι might resolve the problem.

I would deconstruct/translate it like follows:
ἑπόμενα προτέροισι τάδ’ ἐφημίσω.
According [to what] preceded, that['s what] you uttered. -> You uttered that in accordance with what preceded.
Did you have another rendition in mind?


Paul,

Not being happy with leaving this question unanswered, I took a fresh look at this this morning. My previous analysis was against the grain[1], treating the participle as the main clause and the finite verb as a subordinate clause. It seems better to read τάδ’ ἐφημίσω as the main clause which refers to the most recent speech act by Cassandra. In my previous thinking, I was treating ἐφημίσω as if it referred to what Cassandra said before. This doesn't make much sense. ἐφημίσω -> τάδ᾿ refers to what Cassandra says now, i.e, what she just said. The participle ἑπόμενα modifies τάδ᾿ with the dative προτέροισι which refers to what she said before. Putting it in English, A. H. Sommerstein LCL uses two WH clauses "What ... What", an elegant solution:

ΧΟΡΟΣ
A.Ag. 1173
ἑπόμενα προτέροισι τάδ᾿ ἐφημίσω,

Chorus
What you have uttered now follows on from what went
before,
— Alan H. Sommerstein LCL

[1] typically, participles are used to present supporting material (background) relative to a finite verb in the main clause.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sun Mar 17, 2013 7:02 pm

Paul Derouda wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:I have been listening daily to lectures by Elizabeth Vandiver on Attic Tragedy and Greek Mythology. Vandiver explicitly addresses the question breaking down the barrier between the fictional scenario in the tragic drama and the scenario in the Athenian theater and contemporary culture. She more or less dogmatically asserts that Attic tragedians never crossed that barrier. For this reason I don't think χορὸς in this context refers to the χορὸς in the theater, but rather to a group of singers described in very unflattering terms that represent the Furies.


Yes, probably the calling the Erinyes a chorus here is just metaphorical. But it is a bit funny, when you think that they will actually form the chorus in the last play of the trilogy. I don't think a crossing of the barrier you describe is intended here.

Incidentally, I've seen that barrier crossed several times in Aristophanes' comedies. (Can't give any examples right now). But that's another genre entirely.



Paul,

I was wrong about Elizabeth Vandiver's treatment of this. Just listened to one of her lectures on Sophocles OT where she points out what she calls a meta theatrical moment where the boundary between the dramatic scenario and the theater is broken in Oedipus Tyrannus 896.

S.OT 895-96
Εἰ γὰρ αἱ τοιαίδε πράξεις τίμιαι,
τί δεῖ με χορεύειν;

E. Vandiver states that in this co-text the reliability of oracles has been called into question by Jocasta's claim that the oracle concerning the son killing his father ... was false and Chorus responds to this breach of faith in oracles of the gods with a question: τί δεῖ με χορεύειν; and according to Vandiver this does not mean exclusively “why should I dance.” It also raises the meta theatrical question “why should I, a citizen of Athens, serve as a member of the chorus in this tragedy at this moment in the theater of Dionysus at this city Dionysia.”

So we have a meta theatrical moment in Sophocles. The lingering question is the semantic significance of χορὸς in this co-text A.AG.1186-87. I would suggest that here we see Erinyes referred to as a χορὸς in a non-technical sense, i.e., no explicit reference to a theatrical scenario; where χορὸς refers to a group of furies. This follows a general principle of not reading a word as a technical term unless the co-text provides compelling semantic constraints in that direction.

An obvious objection: Vandiver as quoted above seems to be imposing a technical meaning on χορεύειν without compelling semantic constraints. I would need to hear Vandive's complete argument in regard to S.OT 896 before I could comment on that.

After looking at Jebb's note on χορεύειν in S.OT 896 I am wondering if χορὸς was ever used in Attic Tragedy without at least some hint of indirect reference to Dionysian worship. If the term is very closely associated with Dionysian worship then perhaps in A.AG.1186-87 we have a complex mixture of metaphors where the Erinyes are compared to a band of drunken revellers (R-T p.194) who wander about singing like a χορὸς but also are a perpetual presence in the house. This sounds a bit confusing but complex metaphors are not trivial to unpack.


Aeschylus Agamemnon 1186-1190 LCL (online edition)

τὴν γὰρ στέγην τήνδ᾿ οὔποτ᾿ ἐκλείπει χορὸς
ξύμφθογγος, οὐκ εὔφωνος· οὐ γὰρ εὖ λέγει.
καὶ μὴν πεπωκώς γ᾿, ὡς θρασύνεσθαι πλέον,
βρότειον αἷμα κῶμος ἐν δόμοις μένει,
δύσπεμπτος ἔξω, συγγόνων Ἐρινύων·

There is a group of singers that never leaves this house.
They sing in unison, but not pleasantly, for their words
speak of evil. Moreover, this revel-band
drinks human blood, thus emboldening itself,
and then remains in the house, hard to send away
— the band of the house’s kindred Furies.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby NateD26 » Mon Mar 18, 2013 7:48 am

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:
Paul Derouda wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:I have been listening daily to lectures by Elizabeth Vandiver on Attic Tragedy and Greek Mythology. Vandiver explicitly addresses the question breaking down the barrier between the fictional scenario in the tragic drama and the scenario in the Athenian theater and contemporary culture. She more or less dogmatically asserts that Attic tragedians never crossed that barrier. For this reason I don't think χορὸς in this context refers to the χορὸς in the theater, but rather to a group of singers described in very unflattering terms that represent the Furies.


Yes, probably the calling the Erinyes a chorus here is just metaphorical. But it is a bit funny, when you think that they will actually form the chorus in the last play of the trilogy. I don't think a crossing of the barrier you describe is intended here.

Incidentally, I've seen that barrier crossed several times in Aristophanes' comedies. (Can't give any examples right now). But that's another genre entirely.



Paul,

I was wrong about Elizabeth Vandiver's treatment of this. Just listened to one of her lectures on Sophocles OT where she points out what she calls a meta theatrical moment where the boundary between the dramatic scenario and the theater is broken in Oedipus Tyrannus 896.

S.OT 895-96
Εἰ γὰρ αἱ τοιαίδε πράξεις τίμιαι,
τί δεῖ με χορεύειν;

E. Vandiver states that in this co-text the reliability of oracles has been called into question by Jocasta's claim that the oracle concerning the son killing his father ... was false and Chorus responds to this breach of faith in oracles of the gods with a question: τί δεῖ με χορεύειν; and according to Vandiver this does not mean exclusively “why should I dance.” It also raises the meta theatrical question “why should I, a citizen of Athens, serve as a member of the chorus in this tragedy at this moment in the theater of Dionysus at this city Dionysia.”

So we have a meta theatrical moment in Sophocles. The lingering question is the semantic significance of χορὸς in this co-text A.AG.1186-87. I would suggest that here we see Erinyes referred to as a χορὸς in a non-technical sense, i.e., no explicit reference to a theatrical scenario; where χορὸς refers to a group of furies. This follows a general principle of not reading a word as a technical term unless the co-text provides compelling semantic constraints in that direction.

An obvious objection: Vandiver as quoted above seems to be imposing a technical meaning on χορεύειν without compelling semantic constraints. I would need to hear Vandive's complete argument in regard to S.OT 896 before I could comment on that.

After looking at Jebb's note on χορεύειν in S.OT 896 I am wondering if χορὸς was ever used in Attic Tragedy without at least some hint of indirect reference to Dionysian worship. If the term is very closely associated with Dionysian worship then perhaps in A.AG.1186-87 we have a complex mixture of metaphors where the Erinyes are compared to a band of drunken revellers (R-T p.194) who wander about singing like a χορὸς but also are a perpetual presence in the house. This sounds a bit confusing but complex metaphors are not trivial to unpack.


Aeschylus Agamemnon 1186-1190 LCL (online edition)

τὴν γὰρ στέγην τήνδ᾿ οὔποτ᾿ ἐκλείπει χορὸς
ξύμφθογγος, οὐκ εὔφωνος· οὐ γὰρ εὖ λέγει.
καὶ μὴν πεπωκώς γ᾿, ὡς θρασύνεσθαι πλέον,
βρότειον αἷμα κῶμος ἐν δόμοις μένει,
δύσπεμπτος ἔξω, συγγόνων Ἐρινύων·

There is a group of singers that never leaves this house.
They sing in unison, but not pleasantly, for their words
speak of evil. Moreover, this revel-band
drinks human blood, thus emboldening itself,
and then remains in the house, hard to send away
— the band of the house’s kindred Furies.

Such an intriguing discovery! The very first sprouts of "breaking the fourth wall". :)
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:40 pm

The very first sprouts of "breaking the fourth wall".


Nate,

A figure of speech not used in my neighborhood. What does it mean?

ΚΑΣΣΑΝΔΡΑ
1202 μάντις μ᾿ Ἀπόλλων τῷδ᾿ ἐπέστησεν τέλει.
ΧΟΡΟΣ
1204 μῶν καὶ θεός περ ἱμέρῳ πεπληγμένος;

Cassandra
1202 The seer Apollo appointed me to this office.
Chorus
1204 Can it be that he, a god, was smitten with desire?
— H. W. Smyth


Rendering μάντις ... Ἀπόλλων "Apollo the Prophet" or some equivalent might be a little bit too literal and possible misleading. Would it be better the treat μάντις in apposition as virtual genitive like אלהי צבאות, or "Apollo god of seers" C. Collard.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Mar 18, 2013 11:15 pm

ΚΑΣΣΑΝΔΡΑ
1202 μάντις μ᾿ Ἀπόλλων τῷδ᾿ ἐπέστησεν τέλει.
ΧΟΡΟΣ
1204 μῶν καὶ θεός περ ἱμέρῳ πεπληγμένος;

Cassandra
Apollo the god of seers set me in this office.
Chorus
Smitten with desire for you, I fear you mean, although he is a god?
— Christopher Collard


There is string particles here which warrant comment. μῶν was at one time a contraction of μὴ οὖν but LSJ suggests that is a lost etymology by the time of Aeschylus:


μῶν, Adv. , contr. for μὴ οὖν, μῶν χαραδριὸν περνᾷς· Hippon. 52 : freq. in Trag., Com., and Pl. ; usu. in questions to which a neg. answer is suggested,
surely not ? μῶν ἄλγος ἴσχεις; you are not in pain, are you ? S.Ph.734, cf. E.Hec.676, 754, Hel.1198, Achae.9, Ar. Lys.69, Pl.Prt.310d .—Its origin from μὴ οὖν was forgotten, hence μῶν οὖν . .; in A.Ch.177, E.Andr.82; μῶν οὖν δῆτα . .; Ar.Pl.845: sts. also μῶν μὴ . .; Pl.Phd.84c, R.505c; also μῶν οὐ . .; suggesting an affirm. answer, A.Supp.417, S.OC1729 (lyr.), Pl.Sph.234a, etc.


G. Cooper (2:69:50.0.A V.4 p3053) "μῶν introduces question which strictly speaking expect a negative answer. But such questions are used so often in a sly, ironic way, or even as expressions of surprised rejection that there can be no fast and hard insistence upon the rule." This tone of irony was popular with Aristophanes with 33 examples in his extant plays.

περ is so flexible that it is tempting to ignore it. However, there some risk in doing so. Cooper[1] says the καὶ ... περ can be used with subordinate participle clauses which are concessive "although ..." and participle can be left out of the construction and he cites A.Ag 1204 μῶν καὶ θεός περ ἱμέρῳ πεπληγμένος as an example.

[1] G. Cooper V.4 p3089, 2:69.67.0.O.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Tue Mar 19, 2013 9:01 am

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:So we have a meta theatrical moment in Sophocles. The lingering question is the semantic significance of χορὸς in this co-text A.AG.1186-87. I would suggest that here we see Erinyes referred to as a χορὸς in a non-technical sense, i.e., no explicit reference to a theatrical scenario; where χορὸς refers to a group of furies. This follows a general principle of not reading a word as a technical term unless the co-text provides compelling semantic constraints in that direction.

An obvious objection: Vandiver as quoted above seems to be imposing a technical meaning on χορεύειν without compelling semantic constraints. I would need to hear Vandive's complete argument in regard to S.OT 896 before I could comment on that.

After looking at Jebb's note on χορεύειν in S.OT 896 I am wondering if χορὸς was ever used in Attic Tragedy without at least some hint of indirect reference to Dionysian worship. If the term is very closely associated with Dionysian worship then perhaps in A.AG.1186-87 we have a complex mixture of metaphors where the Erinyes are compared to a band of drunken revellers (R-T p.194) who wander about singing like a χορὸς but also are a perpetual presence in the house. This sounds a bit confusing but complex metaphors are not trivial to unpack.

I agree in taking khoros as a non-technical sense here. The idea of an association with Dionysian worship is intriguing. But whether it is so or not, I think the point is that words that are usually apply to a more happy, carnaval-like context is transferred to the horrible Erinyes.

I raided the university library again yesterday and plundered among other books the third part of Fraenkel's commentary. He comments briefly the word khoros there: "In this passage the choir of the Erinyes makes its entry into the trilogy, which it is to dominate until the end. The tale of the monsters who, surfeited with the blood of their victims, chant their sinister song looks forward to the choruses of the Eumenides, in particular to the δέσμιος ὕμνος." I don't think he means that "makes its entry" is to be taken in the concrete sense that the Erinyes are actual actors in the play now.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby NateD26 » Tue Mar 19, 2013 2:35 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:
NateD26 wrote:The very first sprouts of "breaking the fourth wall".

Nate,
A figure of speech not used in my neighborhood. What does it mean?

I think it generally means to acknowledge the existence of an audience (TV/movie watchers
or theater spectators) thereby acknowledging their own fictionality. This is very prominent
and a tad over-done in the new Netflix series "House of Cards" where Kevin Spacey's Frank Underwood
would often interject and speak directly to the camera, revealing his motives for a certain action
he has just done or is about to do.

I see now, however, that it is not quite the case here, and Vandiver's meta theatrical moment
is a more apt definition to this particular kind of breaking.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Wed Mar 20, 2013 3:56 am

ΚΑΣΣΑΝΔΡΑ
ἰοὺ ἰού, ὢ ὢ κακά·
1215
ὑπ᾿ αὖ με δεινὸς ὀρθομαντείας πόνος
στροβεῖ ταράσσων φροιμίοις †ἐφημένους†.
ὁρᾶτε τούσδε τοὺς δόμοις ἐφημένους
νέους, ὀνείρων προσφερεῖς μορφώμασιν;
παῖδες θανόντες, ὡσπερεὶ πρὸς οὐ φίλων,
1220
χεῖρας κρεῶν πλήθοντες, οἰκείας βορᾶς,
σὺν ἐντέροις τε σπλάγχν᾿, ἐποίκτιστον γέμος,
πρέπουσ᾿ ἔχοντες, ὦν πατὴρ ἐγεύσατο.

Cassandra
Iou, iou! Oh! Oh! The pain! The terrible agony of
true prophecy is coming over me again, whirling me
around and deranging me in the <fierce storm> of its
onset. [Pointing wildly] Do you see these young ones,
sitting near the house, looking like dream-shapes?
Children dead, as if at the hands of enemies, their
hands conspicuously filled with the flesh on which their
close kin fed, holding the offals and entrails—a most
pitiable burden—which their father tasted.

— Alan H. Sommerstein


There is a lack of concord between χεῖρας and πλήθοντες. D-P call χεῖρας an accusative of respect for what that is worth. D-P also suggest that τε joins πλήθοντες and ἔχοντες which helps sort out the syntax. The hands are full of and holding the carnage.

οἰκείας βορᾶς "the meal domestic" — Browning "their own flesh" H.W. Smyth. This turn of phrase is semantically oblique. D-P remarks here that Aeschylus is capable of torturing language. What the other commentators have to say about this?
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:01 pm

νεῶν τ’ ἄπαρχος Ἰλίου τ’ ἀναστάτης
οὐκ οἶδεν οἷα γλῶσσα μισητῆς κυνὸς
λείξασα κἀκτείνασα φαιδρὸν οὖς, δίκην
1230
Ἄτης λαθραίου, τεύξεται κακῇ τύχῃ.
τοιάδε τόλμα· θῆλυς ἄρσενος φονεὺς
ἔστιν. τί νιν καλοῦσα δυσφιλὲς δάκος
τύχοιμ’ ἄν; ἀμφίσβαιναν, ἢ Σκύλλαν τινὰ
οἰκοῦσαν ἐν πέτραισι, ναυτίλων βλάβην,
— Perseus U.Chicago

The commander of the fleet and the overthrower of Ilium little knows what deeds shall be brought to evil accomplishment by the hateful hound, whose tongue licked his hand, who stretched forth her ears in gladness, [1230] like treacherous Ate. Such boldness has she, a woman to slay a man. What odious monster shall I fitly call her? An Amphisbaena1? Or a Scylla, tenanting the rocks, a pest to mariners,
— H.W. Smyth


νεῶν δ᾿ ἄπαρχος Ἰλίου τ᾿ ἀναστάτης
ἄτης λαθραίου τεὺξεται κακῇ τύχῃ·
οὐκ οἶδεν οἷα γλῶσσα μισητῆς κυνός,
1229
λείξασα καὶ κλίνασα φαιδρὸν οὖς, δάκνει.
1231
τοιάδε τόλμαν θῆλυς ἄρσενος φονεύς·
ἔστιν—τί νιν καλοῦσα δυσφιλὲς δάκος
τύχοιμ᾿ ἄν; ἀμφίσβαιναν, ἢ Σκύλλαν τινὰ
οἰκοῦσαν ἐν πέτραισι, ναυτίλων βλάβην,
— Sommerstein LCL

... The commander of the fleet, the
destroyer of Ilium, is about to suffer an evil fate and
meet a destruction that will spring from concealment: he
does not know what kind of bite comes after the
fawning tongue of that hateful bitch and the cheerful
inclination of her ear.
— Sommerstein LCL



The text of 1228-30 is a source of much conjecture. Ignoring all that[1], Elizabeth Vandiver in her feminist reading of Agamemnon points out that the portrait painted of Clytemnestra is much more outrageous and shocking in a fifth century Athenian context than it would be to a 21st century western reader. θῆλυς ἄρσενος φονεὺς female murderer of a male is equally unflattering as μισητῆς κυνός hateful female-dog. Compare this with Sophocles Clytemnestra in Electra, who chastises her daughter for running around outside the house, a violation of the norms for Athenian women. E. Vandiver discusses at some length this aspect of Clytemnestra, her manlikeness which is pointed out in the opening speech of the watchmen in Agamemnon; a major theme in Agamemnon which western audiences conditioned by over a century of feminism are likely to overlook.

[1] I didn't actually ignore it. Spent most of the morning trying to wade through D-P and R-T discussions of the numerous conjectures and reconstructions by Page, Frankel, West ... I finally just reconstructed the text according to Page worked with several variants to see what difference they made.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Thu Mar 21, 2013 10:25 pm

A.Ag 1235-1238 Cassandra
θύουσαν Ἅιδου μητέρ’ ἄσπονδόν τ’ Ἄρη
φίλοις πνέουσαν; ὡς δ’ ἐπωλολύξατο
ἡ παντότολμος, ὥσπερ ἐν μάχης τροπῇ,
δοκεῖ δὲ χαίρειν νοστίμῳ σωτηρίᾳ.

... a raging, devil's mother, breathing relentless war against her husband? And how the all-daring woman raised a shout of triumph, as when the battle turns, the while she feigned to joy at his safe return!
— H. W. Smyth


RE:ὥσπερ ἐν μάχης τροπῇ as when the battle turns The genitive μάχης between ἐν + dative, this happens in Attic but what about NT?

ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ with human voice 2Pet. 2:16

2Pet. 2:16 ἔλεγξιν δὲ ἔσχεν ἰδίας παρανομίας· ὑποζύγιον ἄφωνον ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ φθεγξάμενον ἐκώλυσεν τὴν τοῦ προφήτου παραφρονίαν.

2Pet. 2:16 I but was rebuked for his own transgression; a speechless donkey[1] spoke with human voice and restrained the prophet's madness. ESV

[1] RSV (1948,1952) reads "dumb a—" which apparently wasn't considered an expletive at that time.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:02 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:
ΚΑΣΣΑΝΔΡΑ
ἰοὺ ἰού, ὢ ὢ κακά·
1215
ὑπ᾿ αὖ με δεινὸς ὀρθομαντείας πόνος
στροβεῖ ταράσσων φροιμίοις †ἐφημένους†.
ὁρᾶτε τούσδε τοὺς δόμοις ἐφημένους
νέους, ὀνείρων προσφερεῖς μορφώμασιν;
παῖδες θανόντες, ὡσπερεὶ πρὸς οὐ φίλων,
1220
χεῖρας κρεῶν πλήθοντες, οἰκείας βορᾶς,
σὺν ἐντέροις τε σπλάγχν᾿, ἐποίκτιστον γέμος,
πρέπουσ᾿ ἔχοντες, ὦν πατὴρ ἐγεύσατο.

Cassandra
Iou, iou! Oh! Oh! The pain! The terrible agony of
true prophecy is coming over me again, whirling me
around and deranging me in the <fierce storm> of its
onset. [Pointing wildly] Do you see these young ones,
sitting near the house, looking like dream-shapes?
Children dead, as if at the hands of enemies, their
hands conspicuously filled with the flesh on which their
close kin fed, holding the offals and entrails—a most
pitiable burden—which their father tasted.

— Alan H. Sommerstein


There is a lack of concord between χεῖρας and πλήθοντες. D-P call χεῖρας an accusative of respect for what that is worth. D-P also suggest that τε joins πλήθοντες and ἔχοντες which helps sort out the syntax. The hands are full of and holding the carnage.

LSJ says πλήθω is transitive only in later poets, so if we believe that, I guess accusative of respect is the only possibility here.
οἰκείας βορᾶς "the meal domestic" — Browning "their own flesh" H.W. Smyth. This turn of phrase is semantically oblique. D-P remarks here that Aeschylus is capable of torturing language. What the other commentators have to say about this?

This is oblique indeed. Fraenkel and West don't discuss it. R-T says οἰκείας means either "their own" or more probably "a meal from within the household".

I think ὦν on line 122 in Sommerstein is a typo for ὧν.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:49 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:The text of 1228-30 is a source of much conjecture. Ignoring all that[1], Elizabeth Vandiver in her feminist reading of Agamemnon points out that the portrait painted of Clytemnestra is much more outrageous and shocking in a fifth century Athenian context than it would be to a 21st century western reader. θῆλυς ἄρσενος φονεὺς female murderer of a male is equally unflattering as μισητῆς κυνός hateful female-dog. Compare this with Sophocles Clytemnestra in Electra, who chastises her daughter for running around outside the house, a violation of the norms for Athenian women. E. Vandiver discusses at some length this aspect of Clytemnestra, her manlikeness which is pointed out in the opening speech of the watchmen in Agamemnon; a major theme in Agamemnon which western audiences conditioned by over a century of feminism are likely to overlook.

This theme, Klytemestra the man-like man-murdering woman seems to be very central. I really don't know what it means, but it really seems to be important. Them original public of the play must have been mostly male, but this seems to me a more profound issue than whether the play is misogynist or not. I think if we can understand why this was so important, we have really understood something about Aeschylus' society. Here again, we must remember that if Klytemestra's portrait isn't very flattering, Agamemnon's isn't either.

As a side note, I saw the new Anna Karenina film yesterday. I liked it, and as far as I remember, it kept quite close to the original story, which I found even a bit surprising (long time since I read the book though). I mean that the central theme of the story is essentially the situation of an adulterous woman, and it's exactly the sort of thing that tends to attract all kinds of "modernisation", i.e. replacing the original ideas and attitudes of Tolstoy with modern ones. I had read a short interview of one the actors (the one who played Kitty), it struck me as pretty naive and made me expect a less good film. She was saying something to the effect that women in the 19th century lived in the midst of prejudices. As if the different condition of women today is just to due to Mankind Being So Much Wiser Today, and not at all things like effective contraception. But of course the actress was really quite young.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:00 am

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:RE:ὥσπερ ἐν μάχης τροπῇ as when the battle turns The genitive μάχης between ἐν + dative, this happens in Attic but what about NT?

ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ with human voice 2Pet. 2:16

2Pet. 2:16 ἔλεγξιν δὲ ἔσχεν ἰδίας παρανομίας· ὑποζύγιον ἄφωνον ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ φθεγξάμενον ἐκώλυσεν τὴν τοῦ προφήτου παραφρονίαν.

2Pet. 2:16 I but was rebuked for his own transgression; a speechless donkey[1] spoke with human voice and restrained the prophet's madness. ESV

I don't know if it really matters, but dative in these examples have slightly different meanings, ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ seems to be an "instrumental" dative and ἐν μάχης τροπῇ "locative".

[1] RSV (1948,1952) reads "dumb a—" which apparently wasn't considered an expletive at that time.
:)
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:09 am

A.Ag 1235-1238 Cassandra
θύουσαν Ἅιδου μητέρ’ ἄσπονδόν τ’ Ἄρη
φίλοις πνέουσαν; ὡς δ’ ἐπωλολύξατο
ἡ παντότολμος, ὥσπερ ἐν μάχης τροπῇ,
δοκεῖ δὲ χαίρειν νοστίμῳ σωτηρίᾳ.

... a raging, devil's mother, breathing relentless war against her husband? And how the all-daring woman raised a shout of triumph, as when the battle turns, the while she feigned to joy at his safe return!
— H. W. Smyth

I would venture that θύουσαν at line 1235 is supposed to remind us of Iliad 1.342, where the same verb is used with Agamemnon ἦ γὰρ ὅ γ’ ὀλοιῇσι φρεσὶ θύει. (Achilles is telling what he thinks about Agamemnon). It's a family business!
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:19 am

Paul Derouda wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:RE:ὥσπερ ἐν μάχης τροπῇ as when the battle turns The genitive μάχης between ἐν + dative, this happens in Attic but what about NT?

ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ with human voice 2Pet. 2:16

2Pet. 2:16 ἔλεγξιν δὲ ἔσχεν ἰδίας παρανομίας· ὑποζύγιον ἄφωνον ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ φθεγξάμενον ἐκώλυσεν τὴν τοῦ προφήτου παραφρονίαν.

2Pet. 2:16 I but was rebuked for his own transgression; a speechless donkey[1] spoke with human voice and restrained the prophet's madness. ESV

I don't know if it really matters, but dative in these examples have slightly different meanings, ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ seems to be an "instrumental" dative and ἐν μάχης τροπῇ "locative".
)


Paul,

A good point about the semantics of the dative.

On the question of word order, dumping a genitive between ἐν and the dative case where the genitive qualifies the dative substantive is kind of rare in the NT. Not so rare in Attic. Having my mind conditioned by decades of reading NT and LXX, things like this jump out. All kinds of perfectly normal Attic syntax look weird to someone who primarily reads Biblical Koine. One good reason to get out of Koine and read Attic, Herodotus, Homer and what ever. Even Polybius, but that's going the extra mile.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sun Mar 24, 2013 6:13 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote: On the question of word order, dumping a genitive between ἐν and the dative case where the genitive qualifies the dative substantive is kind of rare in the NT. Not so rare in Attic.


Here are three more examples from the NT, εἰς -> gen -> acc, ἐπὶ -> gen -> acc --> gen

Matt. 13:33 Ἄλλην παραβολὴν ἐλάλησεν αὐτοῖς· ὁμοία ἐστὶν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν ζύμῃ, ἣν λαβοῦσα γυνὴ ἐνέκρυψεν εἰς ἀλεύρου σάτα τρία ἕως οὗ ἐζυμώθη ὅλον.

Luke 13:21 ὁμοία ἐστὶν ζύμῃ, ἣν λαβοῦσα γυνὴ [ἐν]έκρυψεν εἰς ἀλεύρου σάτα τρία ἕως οὗ ἐζυμώθη ὅλον.

Rev. 7:17 ὅτι τὸ ἀρνίον τὸ ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ θρόνου ποιμανεῖ αὐτοὺς καὶ ὁδηγήσει αὐτοὺς ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς ὑδάτων , καὶ ἐξαλείψει ὁ θεὸς πᾶν δάκρυον ἐκ τῶν ὀφθαλμῶν αὐτῶν.

The last example is tricky, wonder if πηγὰς was miss-construed as a fem.gen. sg. by the author, it looks like John intended a Hebrew construct chain like ἐκ τῆς πηγῆς τοῦ ὕδατος τῆς ζωῆς δωρεάν Rev. 21:6.


Rev. 21:6 καὶ εἶπέν μοι· γέγοναν. ἐγώ [εἰμι] τὸ ἄλφα καὶ τὸ ὦ, ἡ ἀρχὴ καὶ τὸ τέλος. ἐγὼ τῷ διψῶντι δώσω ἐκ τῆς πηγῆς τοῦ ὕδατος τῆς ζωῆς δωρεάν.

Rev. 22:1 Καὶ ἔδειξέν μοι ποταμὸν ὕδατος ζωῆς λαμπρὸν ὡς κρύσταλλον, ἐκπορευόμενον ἐκ τοῦ θρόνου τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τοῦ ἀρνίου.

Rev. 22:17 Καὶ τὸ πνεῦμα καὶ ἡ νύμφη λέγουσιν· ἔρχου. καὶ ὁ ἀκούων εἰπάτω· ἔρχου. καὶ ὁ διψῶν ἐρχέσθω, ὁ θέλων λαβέτω ὕδωρ ζωῆς δωρεάν.

One of numerous parallels in the LXX where we have the pattern acc -> gen -> gen, following the Hebrew pattern where genitives always follow the head noun:

Jer. 2:13 ὅτι δύο πονηρὰ ἐποίησεν ὁ λαός μου· ἐμὲ ἐγκατέλιπον, πηγὴν ὕδατος ζωῆς, καὶ ὤρυξαν ἑαυτοῖς λάκκους συντετριμμένους, οἳ οὐ δυνήσονται ὕδωρ συνέχειν.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:19 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:Rev. 7:17 ὅτι τὸ ἀρνίον τὸ ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ θρόνου ποιμανεῖ αὐτοὺς καὶ ὁδηγήσει αὐτοὺς ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς ὑδάτων , καὶ ἐξαλείψει ὁ θεὸς πᾶν δάκρυον ἐκ τῶν ὀφθαλμῶν αὐτῶν.

The last example is tricky, wonder if πηγὰς was miss-construed as a fem.gen. sg. by the author, it looks like John intended a Hebrew construct chain like ἐκ τῆς πηγῆς τοῦ ὕδατος τῆς ζωῆς δωρεάν Rev. 21:6.

Rev. 21:6 καὶ εἶπέν μοι· γέγοναν. ἐγώ [εἰμι] τὸ ἄλφα καὶ τὸ ὦ, ἡ ἀρχὴ καὶ τὸ τέλος. ἐγὼ τῷ διψῶντι δώσω ἐκ τῆς πηγῆς τοῦ ὕδατος τῆς ζωῆς δωρεάν.


Moving in a different direction, in a number of minuscules ζωάς replaces ζωῆς at ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς ὑδάτων Rev. 7:17 . Apparently some scribe had problem with a split genitive construction. This doesn't mean that scribe would of had a problem with ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς without ὑδάτων. Apparently, given the silence of grammars on this point, the introduction of a genitive between a prep + dat, or prep + acc construction doesn't raise any problem.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:17 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:Rev. 7:17 ὅτι τὸ ἀρνίον τὸ ἀνὰ μέσον τοῦ θρόνου ποιμανεῖ αὐτοὺς καὶ ὁδηγήσει αὐτοὺς ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς ὑδάτων , καὶ ἐξαλείψει ὁ θεὸς πᾶν δάκρυον ἐκ τῶν ὀφθαλμῶν αὐτῶν.

The last example is tricky, wonder if πηγὰς was miss-construed as a fem.gen. sg. by the author, it looks like John intended a Hebrew construct chain like ἐκ τῆς πηγῆς τοῦ ὕδατος τῆς ζωῆς δωρεάν Rev. 21:6.

Rev. 21:6 καὶ εἶπέν μοι· γέγοναν. ἐγώ [εἰμι] τὸ ἄλφα καὶ τὸ ὦ, ἡ ἀρχὴ καὶ τὸ τέλος. ἐγὼ τῷ διψῶντι δώσω ἐκ τῆς πηγῆς τοῦ ὕδατος τῆς ζωῆς δωρεάν.


Moving in a different direction, in a number of minuscules ζωάς replaces ζωῆς at ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς ὑδάτων Rev. 7:17 . Apparently some scribe had problem with a split genitive construction. This doesn't mean that scribe would of had a problem with ἐπὶ ζωῆς πηγὰς without ὑδάτων. Apparently, given the silence of grammars on this point, the introduction of a genitive between a prep + dat, or prep + acc construction doesn't raise any problem.


If you spend enough time you will eventually find a discussion of this. Cooper (vol. 1, p198, 47.9.19) addresses the placement of a genitive construed with a substantive between a preposition and it's case. Cooper describes this phenomenon as sporadic, but He gives a whole page of examples from Thucydides and Xenophon.

Thucydides
Book 1, chapter 1, section 3, line 3

καὶ τὸ ἄλλο Ἑλληνικὸν ὁρῶν ξυνιστάμενον πρὸς ἑκατέρους,
τὸ μὲν εὐθύς, τὸ δὲ καὶ διανοούμενον. κίνησις γὰρ αὕτη
μεγίστη δὴ τοῖς Ἕλλησιν ἐγένετο καὶ μέρει τινὶ τῶν βαρ-
βάρων, ὡς δὲ εἰπεῖν καὶ ἐπὶ πλεῖστον ἀνθρώπων. τὰ γὰρ
πρὸ αὐτῶν καὶ τὰ ἔτι παλαίτερα σαφῶς μὲν εὑρεῖν διὰ
χρόνου πλῆθος
ἀδύνατα ἦν, ἐκ δὲ τεκμηρίων ὧν ἐπὶ μακρό-
τατον σκοποῦντί μοι πιστεῦσαι ξυμβαίνει οὐ μεγάλα νομίζω
γενέσθαι οὔτε κατὰ τοὺς πολέμους οὔτε ἐς τὰ ἄλλα. φαί-



Thucydides
Book 1, chapter 12, section 3, line 1

κατεσχηκότος· ἐπεὶ καὶ μετὰ τὰ Τρωικὰ ἡ Ἑλλὰς ἔτι μετ-
ανίστατό τε καὶ κατῳκίζετο, ὥστε μὴ ἡσυχάσασαν αὐξηθῆναι.
ἥ τε γὰρ ἀναχώρησις τῶν Ἑλλήνων ἐξ Ἰλίου χρονία γενο-
μένη πολλὰ ἐνεόχμωσε, καὶ στάσεις ἐν ταῖς πόλεσιν ὡς
ἐπὶ πολὺ ἐγίγνοντο, ἀφ' ὧν ἐκπίπτοντες τὰς πόλεις ἔκτιζον.
Βοιωτοί τε γὰρ οἱ νῦν ἑξηκοστῷ ἔτει μετὰ Ἰλίου ἅλωσιν ἐξ
Ἄρνης ἀναστάντες ὑπὸ Θεσσαλῶν τὴν νῦν μὲν Βοιωτίαν,
πρότερον δὲ Καδμηίδα γῆν καλουμένην ᾤκισαν (ἦν δὲ αὐτῶν
καὶ ἀποδασμὸς πρότερον ἐν τῇ γῇ ταύτῃ, ἀφ' ὧν καὶ ἐς
Ἴλιον ἐστράτευσαν), Δωριῆς τε ὀγδοηκοστῷ ἔτει ξὺν Ἡρα-
κλείδαις Πελοπόννησον ἔσχον. μόλις τε ἐν πολλῷ χρόνῳ


Xenophon Hist., Hellenica
Book 2, chapter 1, section 21, line 2

πάντα ἀφῆκε Λύσανδρος. οἱ δ' Ἀθηναῖοι κατὰ πόδας
πλέοντες ὡρμίσαντο τῆς Χερρονήσου ἐν Ἐλαιοῦντι ναυσὶν
ὀγδοήκοντα καὶ ἑκατόν. ἐνταῦθα δὴ ἀριστοποιουμένοις
αὐτοῖς ἀγγέλλεται τὰ περὶ Λάμψακον, καὶ εὐθὺς ἀνήχθησαν
εἰς Σηστόν. ἐκεῖθεν δ' εὐθὺς ἐπισιτισάμενοι ἔπλευσαν
εἰς Αἰγὸς ποταμοὺς ἀντίον τῆς Λαμψάκου· διεῖχε δ' ὁ
Ἑλλήσποντος ταύτῃ σταδίους ὡς πεντεκαίδεκα. ἐνταῦθα
δὴ ἐδειπνοποιοῦντο. Λύσανδρος δὲ τῇ ἐπιούσῃ νυκτί, ἐπεὶ
ὄρθρος ἦν, ἐσήμηνεν εἰς τὰς ναῦς ἀριστοποιησαμένους
εἰσβαίνειν, πάντα δὲ παρασκευασάμενος ὡς εἰς ναυμαχίαν
καὶ τὰ παραβλήματα παραβάλλων, προεῖπεν ὡς μηδεὶς
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sat Mar 30, 2013 6:40 pm

A.Ag 1291-1294

Ἅιδου πύλας δὲ τάσδ’ ἐγὼ προσεννέπω·
ἐπεύχομαι δὲ καιρίας πληγῆς τυχεῖν,
ὡς ἀσφάδαστος, αἱμάτων εὐθνησίμων
ἀπορρυέντων, ὄμμα συμβάλω τόδε.

I address these gates as the gates of Hades. LCL

This door I greet as the gates of Death. H. W. Smyth


Smyth's gates of Death sounds like Job LXX

Job 38:17 ἀνοίγονται δέ σοι φόβῳ πύλαι θανάτου,
πυλωροὶ δὲ ᾅδου ἰδόντες σε ἔπτηξαν;

Gates of Hades/Hell first(??) found in Homer

Homerus Epic., Ilias
Book 5, line 646

ἓξ οἴῃς σὺν νηυσὶ καὶ ἀνδράσι παυροτέροισιν
Ἰλίου ἐξαλάπαξε πόλιν, χήρωσε δ' ἀγυιάς·
σοὶ δὲ κακὸς μὲν θυμός, ἀποφθινύθουσι δὲ λαοί.
οὐδέ τί σε Τρώεσσιν ὀΐομαι ἄλκαρ ἔσεσθαι
ἐλθόντ' ἐκ Λυκίης, οὐδ' εἰ μάλα καρτερός ἐσσι,
ἀλλ' ὑπ' ἐμοὶ δμηθέντα πύλας Ἀΐδαο περήσειν.


found also in Euripides:

Euripides Trag., Hippolytus
Line 57

κῶμος λέλακεν, Ἄρτεμιν τιμῶν θεὰν
ὕμνοισιν· οὐ γὰρ οἶδ' ἀνεωιγμένας πύλας
Ἅιδου
, φάος δὲ λοίσθιον βλέπων τόδε.


Found in Gospel of Matthew:

Matt. 16:18 κἀγὼ δέ σοι λέγω ὅτι σὺ εἶ Πέτρος, καὶ ἐπὶ ταύτῃ τῇ πέτρᾳ οἰκοδομήσω μου τὴν ἐκκλησίαν καὶ πύλαι ᾅδου οὐ κατισχύσουσιν αὐτῆς.

Matthew probably picked it up from the LXX where it is found several times:

3Mac. 5:51 ἀνεβόησαν φωνῇ μεγάλῃ σφόδρα τὸν τῆς ἁπάσης δυνάμεως δυνάστην ἱκετεύοντες οἰκτῖραι μετὰ ἐπιφανείας αὐτοὺς ἤδη πρὸς πύλαις ᾅδου καθεστῶτας.

Ode. 11:10 Ἐγὼ εἶπα Ἐν τῷ ὕψει τῶν ἡμερῶν μου
πορεύσομαι ἐν πύλαις ᾅδου,
καταλείψω τὰ ἔτη τὰ ἐπίλοιπα.

Job 38:17 ἀνοίγονται δέ σοι φόβῳ πύλαι θανάτου,
πυλωροὶ δὲ ᾅδου ἰδόντες σε ἔπτηξαν;

Wis. 16:13 σὺ γὰρ ζωῆς καὶ θανάτου ἐξουσίαν ἔχεις
καὶ κατάγεις εἰς πύλας ᾅδου καὶ ἀνάγεις·

Sol. 16:2 παρ᾿ ὀλίγον ἐξεχύθη ἡ ψυχή μου εἰς θάνατον
σύνεγγυς πυλῶν ᾅδου μετὰ ἁμαρτωλοῦ

Is. 38:10 Ἐγὼ εἶπα Ἐν τῷ ὕψει τῶν ἡμερῶν μου ἐν πύλαις ᾅδου καταλείψω τὰ ἔτη τὰ ἐπίλοιπα.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sat Mar 30, 2013 10:55 pm

Χορός
1295
ὦ πολλὰ μὲν τάλαινα, πολλὰ δ’ αὖ σοφὴ
γύναι, μακρὰν ἔτεινας. εἰ δ’ ἐτητύμως
μόρον τὸν αὑτῆς οἶσθα, πῶς θεηλάτου
βοὸς δίκην πρὸς βωμὸν εὐτόλμως πατεῖς;

Chorus
[1295] O woman, pitiful exceedingly and exceeding wise, long has been your speech. But if, in truth, you have knowledge of your own death, how can you step with calm courage to the altar like an ox, driven by the god?

— H. W Smyth


The referent of μακρὰν ἔτεινας isn't perfectly obvious, the 2nd pers. sg. ἔτεινας suggests Cassandra prolongs something and her speech is the only thing handy to fill the void. Comparing her to an Ox being driven to the alter for slaughter is not very flattering. The only point of comparison is her willingness to go without an attempt to escape. But to OX doesn't know and she knows, and she isn't going quietly, so in several respects the the comparison falls apart.

Once again we see δίκην used adverbially, after the manner of an OX ...

The sacrifice motif in Aeschylus and Good Friday:

Κασάνδρα prediction of her own death and the sacrificial imagery comes at a time when I should be reading the gospels. I had a good solid hour of gospel reading while waiting in the examination room to see my primary MD on Wednesday afternoon. She was running an hour late and I knew this would happen so I took along my NA26 and had a very vivid encounter with the Gospel of John, the wording was plain and direct, shockingly so, after months of wading through the seemingly endless ambiguities of Aeschylus.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:30 am

I looked through the instances of "gates" of Hades in Homer. Many times reading Homer it has struck me strange why talk about the gates of Hades, when you could talk about Hades itself. Why say "I hate him like the gates of Hades/death", when you could say "I hate him like death"? Is "gates of death" just a periphrasis for death, or does it include some other idea, like the "transition to death" or even "moment of death"?

In Il. 23.71 the idea is simply, I think, that Patroclus is in some kind of limbo and wants to get buried quickly to get on to Hades proper. But could this support an idea that the limbo before the gates of Hades in Homer are even worse Hades itself, and that's the reason they're referring to the gates of Hades?

An interesting comparison is the gates of Dream - with those, you can either just be "at" the gates of Dream (I wonder if Penelope is sleeping only lightly at Od. 4.808) or go through them.

In the passage of Agamemnon the gates of Hades don't seem to me to mean anything very elaborate, though.

Il. 9.312-
ἐχθρὸς γάρ μοι κεῖνος ὁμῶς Ἀΐδαο πύλῃσιν
ὅς χ' ἕτερον μὲν κεύθῃ ἐνὶ φρεσίν, ἄλλο δὲ εἴπῃ.

(Il. 9.312=OD.14.156)

Il 23.71
θάπτέ με ὅττι τάχιστα πύλας Ἀΐδαο περήσω.

OD.4.808
τὴν δ' ἠμείβετ' ἔπειτα περίφρων Πηνελόπεια,
ἡδὺ μάλα κνώσσουσ' ἐν ὀνειρείῃσι πύλῃσιν

OD.19.562
δοιαὶ γάρ τε πύλαι ἀμενηνῶν εἰσὶν ὀνείρων:
αἱ μὲν γὰρ κεράεσσι τετεύχαται, αἱ δ' ἐλέφαντι:
τῶν οἳ μέν κ' ἔλθωσι διὰ πριστοῦ ἐλέφαντος,
οἵ ῥ' ἐλεφαίρονται, ἔπε' ἀκράαντα φέροντες:
οἱ δὲ διὰ ξεστῶν κεράων ἔλθωσι θύραζε,
οἵ ῥ' ἔτυμα κραίνουσι, βροτῶν ὅτε κέν τις ἴδηται.

Another thing I've thought to be a bit analogous in Homer is the idea of "the threshold of old age", γήραος οὐδός, which actually means old age itself.

Btw, I didn't remember that the NT actually uses the word "Hades". The meaning of the word has of course shifted. In Homer, it actually usually doesn't mean the place but the person. The beginning of the Iliad really means "hurled to [the god] Hades' [house] many ghosts of heroes". I would give a reference for this if I remembered one...
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Sun Mar 31, 2013 7:45 am

I don't know a word of Hebrew. For those passages of the LXX where a Hebrew equivalent exists, is there a difference with the expression "gates of hades" compared to the Greek version?
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby NateD26 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:08 pm

Job 38:17

יז הֲנִגְלוּ לְךָ, שַׁעֲרֵי-מָוֶת; וְשַׁעֲרֵי צַלְמָוֶת תִּרְאֶה.

The distinction was a bit unclear to me, until I've read the Aramaic translation which
reads the second part as the gates of hell itself:

יז אפשר דאתגליאו לך מעלני מותא ומעלני טולא מותא דגהנם תחמי.

All the commentators I've read though seem to take them as phrases signifying the same
thing. Rashi read both of them as referring to Hell, and another read both as referring to the grave.
I've never liked this explanation of identical semantic parallelism, because it's too easy. There must have
been a reason for this repetition and there must have been in the scribes minds two distinct
terms for death and hell.

Our Hebrew צ is the Aramaic ט, and it seems Hell is always the shadow of death in the Bible.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sun Mar 31, 2013 6:31 pm

NateD26 wrote:Job 38:17

יז הֲנִגְלוּ לְךָ, שַׁעֲרֵי-מָוֶת; וְשַׁעֲרֵי צַלְמָוֶת תִּרְאֶה.

The distinction was a bit unclear to me, until I've read the Aramaic translation which
reads the second part as the gates of hell itself:

יז אפשר דאתגליאו לך מעלני מותא ומעלני טולא מותא דגהנם תחמי.

All the commentators I've read though seem to take them as phrases signifying the same
thing. Rashi read both of them as referring to Hell, and another read both as referring to the grave.
I've never liked this explanation of identical semantic parallelism, because it's too easy. There must have
been a reason for this repetition and there must have been in the scribes minds two distinct
terms for death and hell.

Our Hebrew צ is the Aramaic ט, and it seems Hell is always the shadow of death in the Bible.


Nate,
RE: identical semantic parallelism

I agree, it is too easy.I checked the commentaries of E. Dhorme (1926) and F. I. Andersen, like the commentaries you mention they make no distinction. The blending two ideas, a place and a personal presence seems to be no problem for the ancient Greeks. Dhorme suggests someting similar for Job 38:17. One problem I have with this, the argument for synonymous parallelism in Job 38:17 assumes that MOT can refer to the place of the dead. The texts that are cited to support this show MOT in a parallel construction with Sheol. This seems to be circular reasoning. Are there any independent (not parallel) cases where MOT is unambiguously referring to the place of the dead? MOT is rendered with θάνᾰτος in Job 38:17. θάνᾰτος is not a place. Sheol is rendered ᾅδης which is a place.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby NateD26 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 11:30 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:Nate,
RE: identical semantic parallelism

I agree, it is too easy.I checked the commentaries of E. Dhorme (1926) and F. I. Andersen, like the commentaries you mention they make no distinction. The blending two ideas, a place and a personal presence seems to be no problem for the ancient Greeks. Dhorme suggests someting similar for Job 38:17. One problem I have with this, the argument for synonymous parallelism in Job 38:17 assumes that MOT can refer to the place of the dead. The texts that are cited to support this show MOT in a parallel construction with Sheol. This seems to be circular reasoning. Are there any independent (not parallel) cases where MOT is unambiguously referring to the place of the dead? MOT is rendered with θάνᾰτος in Job 38:17. θάνᾰτος is not a place. Sheol is rendered ᾅδης which is a place.

I'm not sure whether there are isolated references of MOT referring to Sheol, but this Wikipedia
article has a couple of references where MOT and Sheol are paralleled and seem at least to
refer to the actual place where the dead go after death. The article mentions this Job verse as
well, and also takes the view that both MOT and TSALMOT[1] are synonyms for Sheol.

Proverbs 5, 5
רַגְלֶיהָ יֹרְדוֹת מָוֶת, שְׁאוֹל צְעָדֶיהָ יִתְמֹכוּ

NSRV doesn't have any English equivalent for Sheol:
5 Her feet go down to death;
her steps follow the path to Sheol.

Hosea 13, 14
מִיַּד שְׁאוֹל אֶפְדֵּם – מִמָּוֶת אֶגְאָלֵם

The same here in NSRV. The upper-cap Death suggests they take the view of a personification --
perhaps Samael, the angel of death in Judaism?

14 Shall I ransom them from the power of Sheol?
Shall I redeem them from Death?

[1] Apparrently, Tsalmavet/Tsalmot is not a combination of TSEL (shadow) and MOT (death)
but was initially from the root צ-ל-מ and referred to a place of darkness. (Wiki Hebrew dictionary)
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:15 pm

Paul Derouda wrote:Btw, I didn't remember that the NT actually uses the word "Hades". The meaning of the word has of course shifted. In Homer, it actually usually doesn't mean the place but the person. The beginning of the Iliad really means "hurled to [the god] Hades' [house] many ghosts of heroes". I would give a reference for this if I remembered one...


Paul,

R. Lattimore's famous opening of the Iliad

Sing, goddess, the anger of Peleus’ son Achilleus
and its devastation, which put pains thousandfold upon the Achaians,
hurled in their multitudes to the house of Hades strong souls
of heroes, but gave their bodies to be the delicate feasting
of dogs, of all birds, and the will of Zeus was accomplished
since that time when first there stood in division of conflict
Atreus’ son the lord of men and brilliant Achilleus. . .
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:26 pm

NateD26 wrote:I'm not sure whether there are isolated references of MOT referring to Sheol, but this Wikipedia
article has a couple of references where MOT and Sheol are paralleled and seem at least to
refer to the actual place where the dead go after death. The article mentions this Job verse as
well, and also takes the view that both MOT and TSALMOT[1] are synonyms for Sheol.

Proverbs 5, 5
רַגְלֶיהָ יֹרְדוֹת מָוֶת, שְׁאוֹל צְעָדֶיהָ יִתְמֹכוּ

NSRV doesn't have any English equivalent for Sheol:
5 Her feet go down to death;
her steps follow the path to Sheol.

Hosea 13, 14
מִיַּד שְׁאוֹל אֶפְדֵּם – מִמָּוֶת אֶגְאָלֵם

The same here in NSRV. The upper-cap Death suggests they take the view of a personification --
perhaps Samael, the angel of death in Judaism?

14 Shall I ransom them from the power of Sheol?
Shall I redeem them from Death?

[1] Apparrently, Tsalmavet/Tsalmot is not a combination of TSEL (shadow) and MOT (death)
but was initially from the root צ-ל-מ and referred to a place of darkness. (Wiki Hebrew dictionary)


Nate,

I looked at these in the LXX. Proverbs is quite different in Greek version.

Prov. 5:5 τῆς γὰρ ἀφροσύνης οἱ πόδες κατάγουσιν
τοὺς χρωμένους αὐτῇ μετὰ θανάτου εἰς τὸν ᾅδην,
τὰ δὲ ἴχνη αὐτῆς οὐκ ἐρείδεται·

Here is E. Tov's parallel version, -+15 is an addition not found in Hebrew text.

Proverbs 5:5
רגל/יה τῆς γὰρ ἀφροσύνης ~11 οἱ πόδες
ירדות κατάγουσιν
--+15 τοὺς χρωμένους
--+15 αὐτῇ
--+15 μετὰ
מות θανάτου
{...}10 εἰς
שׁאול {..pεἰς}22 τὸν ᾅδην
צעד/יה τὰ δὲ ἴχνη αὐτῆς
--+15 οὐκ
יתמכו ἐρείδεται


I am not totally convinced that MOT where it is rendered θανάτου means a place according to the translator (not the original author). With all the metaphors and other figurative language it is somewhat difficult to nail down a referent but I think that the translator would have chosen a different word from θανάτου to indicate travel to the land of the dead. Could be wrong of course.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:39 pm

A.Ag 1301
Κασάνδρα
ἥκει τόδ’ ἦμαρ· σμικρὰ κερδανῶ φυγῇ.

The day has arrived, I have little to gain by trying to escape.

Not sure why σμικρὰ is an accusative neut plural. Really not a big deal, but looking at LSJ for μικρός and σμῑκρός a singular seems to be the normal way of saying this.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:47 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:A.Ag 1301
Κασάνδρα
ἥκει τόδ’ ἦμαρ· σμικρὰ κερδανῶ φυγῇ.

The day has arrived, I have little to gain by trying to escape.

Not sure why σμικρὰ is an accusative neut plural.
not a big deal, but a singular would be a better fit.

Metre? σμικρὰ scans long-short, σμικρὸν would scan long-long. I haven't really understood the meter business in tragedy but my guess is that's here that's the reason.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Apr 01, 2013 9:50 pm

Paul Derouda wrote:
C. S. Bartholomew wrote:A.Ag 1301
Κασάνδρα
ἥκει τόδ’ ἦμαρ· σμικρὰ κερδανῶ φυγῇ.

The day has arrived, I have little to gain by trying to escape.

Not sure why σμικρὰ is an accusative neut plural.
not a big deal, but a singular would be a better fit.

Metre? σμικρὰ scans long-short, σμικρὸν would scan long-long. I haven't really understood the meter business in tragedy but my guess is that's here that's the reason.


Thanks Paul, on meter I am clueless. A big handicap when reading Tragedy but my attempts to read discussions of meter in the printed literature convinced me that you need an oral presentation of the subject. Almost impossible to make any sense out of it without someone saying it out loud.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:06 pm

Frankly, I'm not sure because metre in tragedy is a lot more complicated than hexameter. This line's metre "might" be iambic trimeter, i.e. that is x - u - x - u - x - u -, where - is long, u is short and x "anceps", that is either long or short. A iambus would be just x - u -. R-T has a long discussion of metres in the end, but I haven't properly read it either.

Metre, meter... I notice I'm manifestly not commited as to whether I stick to the British or the American spelling... At school they told us to pick either one and be consistent. But well...
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Mon Apr 01, 2013 10:30 pm

Paul,

I found a site where some lines of Agamemnon are read out-loud.

http://prosoidia.com/agamemnon-of-aeschylus/

Not certain about what the reader's background is, perhaps modern greek.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Wed Apr 03, 2013 8:28 pm

Κασάνδρα
οὐκ ἔστ’ ἄλυξις, οὔ, ξένοι, χρόνον πλέω.
Χορός
1300
ὁ δ’ ὕστατός γε τοῦ χρόνου πρεσβεύεται,
Κασάνδρα
ἥκει τόδ’ ἦμαρ· σμικρὰ κερδανῶ φυγῇ.
Χορός
ἀλλ’ ἴσθι τλήμων οὖσ’ ἀπ’ εὐτόλμου φρενός.
Κασάνδρα
οὐδεὶς ἀκούει ταῦτα τῶν εὐδαιμόνων.
Χορός
ἀλλ’ εὐκλεῶς τοι κατθανεῖν χάρις βροτῷ.

Cassandra
There is no escape; no, my friends, there is none any more.
Chorus
[1300] Yet he that is last has the advantage in respect of time.
Cassandra
The day has come; flight would profit me but little.
Chorus
Well, be assured, you brave suffering with a courageous spirit.
Cassandra
None who is happy is commended thus.
Chorus
Yet surely to die nobly is a blessing for mortals.
— H. W. Smyth


It is less than perfectly clear what Aeschylus' perspective is on this exchange. The Χορός are trying to find a way of putting Κασάνδρα's predicament in a positive light and Κασάνδρα is refusing to accept this. I would compare the Χορός at this point to Job's friends with all their lightweight platitudes, offered to a destitute man, while they remain healthy and wealthy. Here we have a king's daughter, beautiful, young, gifted, in good health, facing imminent death. The Χορός offers banal platitudes about matters that don't confront them personally. So the irony of their remarks is perfectly obvious to a modernist but what about Aeschylus. Would he have endorsed the words and perspective of the Χορός in this exchange or is he using the Χορός to represent something on the same order with Job's friends?
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:48 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:Paul,

I found a site where some lines of Agamemnon are read out-loud.

http://prosoidia.com/agamemnon-of-aeschylus/

Not certain about what the reader's background is, perhaps modern greek.

Nice find. To me this sounded very good. I'm not certain either about the reader's background, but modern Greek sounds a good guess to me. Anyway, I found this in many respect superior to R-T's companion CD. The only "problem" I remarked was that the reader seemed to treat φ θ χ as fricatives (English f, th, h), not aspirates (just like a Modern Greek would do) but at least he made a clear distinction between φ θ χ and π τ κ unlike R-T. There seemed to be a good attempt to reproduce the pitch accent - something I can't really judge, since I have a bad musical ear, but it seemed good to me. Also the rhythm sounded good, though for this too I'm not that good a judge. Anyway, to me this seems to just the kind of thing that can help us understand the metre.
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Paul Derouda » Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:04 pm

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:
Κασάνδρα
οὐκ ἔστ’ ἄλυξις, οὔ, ξένοι, χρόνον πλέω.
Χορός
1300
ὁ δ’ ὕστατός γε τοῦ χρόνου πρεσβεύεται,
Κασάνδρα
ἥκει τόδ’ ἦμαρ· σμικρὰ κερδανῶ φυγῇ.
Χορός
ἀλλ’ ἴσθι τλήμων οὖσ’ ἀπ’ εὐτόλμου φρενός.
Κασάνδρα
οὐδεὶς ἀκούει ταῦτα τῶν εὐδαιμόνων.
Χορός
ἀλλ’ εὐκλεῶς τοι κατθανεῖν χάρις βροτῷ.

Cassandra
There is no escape; no, my friends, there is none any more.
Chorus
[1300] Yet he that is last has the advantage in respect of time.
Cassandra
The day has come; flight would profit me but little.
Chorus
Well, be assured, you brave suffering with a courageous spirit.
Cassandra
None who is happy is commended thus.
Chorus
Yet surely to die nobly is a blessing for mortals.
— H. W. Smyth


It is less than perfectly clear what Aeschylus' perspective is on this exchange. The Χορός are trying to find a way of putting Κασάνδρα's predicament in a positive light and Κασάνδρα is refusing to accept this. I would compare the Χορός at this point to Job's friends with all their lightweight platitudes, offered to a destitute man, while they remain healthy and wealthy. Here we have a king's daughter, beautiful, young, gifted, in good health, facing imminent death. The Χορός offers banal platitudes about matters that don't confront them personally. So the irony of their remarks is perfectly obvious to a modernist but what about Aeschylus. Would he have endorsed the words and perspective of the Χορός in this exchange or is he using the Χορός to represent something on the same order with Job's friends?

I'm not really sure. This sort of thing, the "meaning" or "message" of the play just eludes me, it's just so different from what we're used to. I don't feel I can say anything with much confidence yet in this kind of subject. The tradition is that Cassandra's predictions are not believed by anyone, so maybe the point is the chorus is incredulous and that's why they're belittling her with their "nevermind" sort of comments?
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:05 pm

A.Ag. 1322

Κασάνδρα
ἅπαξ ἔτ’ εἰπεῖν ῥῆσιν οὐ θρῆνον θέλω
ἐμὸν τὸν αὐτῆς. ἡλίῳ δ’ ἐπεύχομαι
πρὸς ὕστατον φῶς †τοῖς ἐμοῖς τιμαόροις

One last time, I wish to speak
my own dirge ...

There is a double (pleonastic) possessive ἐμὸν + τὸν αὐτῆς (possessive genitive). G. Cooper[1] suggests that this parallel construction underlines the possessive use of the genitive. On the other hand, the use of τὸν in τὸν αὐτῆς caught my eye where τὸν ties αὐτῆς to θρῆνον.



We saw τὸν αὐτῆς used as a possessive on line 1297

Χορός
1295
ὦ πολλὰ μὲν τάλαινα, πολλὰ δ’ αὖ σοφὴ
γύναι, μακρὰν ἔτεινας. εἰ δ’ ἐτητύμως
μόρον τὸν αὑτῆς οἶσθα, πῶς θεηλάτου
βοὸς δίκην πρὸς βωμὸν εὐτόλμως πατεῖς;

Chorus
[1295] O woman, pitiful exceedingly and exceeding wise, long has been your speech. But if, in truth, you have knowledge of your own death, how can you step with calm courage to the altar like an ox, driven by the god?
— H. W. Smyth

[1] Guy Cooper, Greek Syntax, v. 3, p. 2020, 2:47.5.3.A)
C. Stirling Bartholomew
C. S. Bartholomew
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Re: A.Ag Κασάνδρα scene 1072-1330

Postby Qimmik » Sun Apr 07, 2013 2:50 pm

In line 1322, it should be ἤ instead of οὐ. Murray, Fraenkel, Denniston & Page, Page (OCT), West and Sommerstein (Loeb) all have ἤ with no indication of a variant reading.

I now see that Fraenkel in his commentary mentions that οὐ is a conjecture by Hermann, "adopted by Mazon among many others." (Murray in his apparatus notes this conjecture too.) Fraenkel rejects the conjecture as unnecessary, and so, apparently, do the other editors cited above.

He also mentions that by adding ἐμὸν τὸν αὐτῆς "Cassandra points to the peculiarity of her situation, for it is in itself contrary to the nature of things that anyone should sing or speak his own dirge." That's the reason for the emphatic τὸν αὐτῆς after ἐμὸν, and that reinforces ἤ as the correct reading: she's going to make a last speech, or rather sing a dirge--her very own, for herself. It doesn't make much sense for her to say she's going to make a final speech but not her very own dirge. The pathos lies precisely in the fact that she knows beforehand exactly what's coming--her speech will be her very own dirge.
Last edited by Qimmik on Sun Apr 07, 2013 11:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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