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Euripides, Helen 753-757

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Euripides, Helen 753-757

Postby jeidsath » Sun Jul 29, 2018 4:34 pm

............................τοῖς θεοῖσι χρὴ
θύοντας αἰτεῖν ἀγαθά, μαντείας δ᾿ ἐᾶν·
βίου γὰρ ἄλλως δέλεαρ ηὑρέθη τόδε,
κοὐδεὶς ἐπλούτησ᾿ ἐμπύροισιν ἀργὸς ὤν·
γνώμη δ᾿ ἀρίστη μάντις ἥ τ᾿ εὐβουλία.

What is ἄλλως doing here precisely? Is it signaling the contrast between what people think μαντεία is for versus the fact that was invented as a δέλεαρ βίου?
Joel Eidsath -- jeidsath@gmail.com

μὴ δ’ οὕτως ἀγαθός περ ἐὼν θεοείκελ’ Ἀχιλλεῦ
κλέπτε νόῳ, ἐπεὶ οὐ παρελεύσεαι οὐδέ με πείσεις.
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Re: Euripides, Helen 753-757

Postby mwh » Mon Jul 30, 2018 6:53 pm

Prophecy was invented αλλως, i.e. without any (good) purpose. αλλως is often used in this elliptical sense. Here it effectively reinforces βιου δελεαρ, the phrase it’s embedded in. Prophecy (quite unlike Textkit) only ensnares people and makes them waste their time.
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