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Why τὸ in "τὸ μὲν ταύτῃ ποιεῖσθαι ?

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Why τὸ in "τὸ μὲν ταύτῃ ποιεῖσθαι ?

Postby daivid » Sun Jun 08, 2014 4:27 pm

This is from Diod. 15.53 ( the prelude to the Battle of Leuktra)
ὁ δὲ Κλεόμβροτος πυθόμενος τοὺς πολεμίους προκατειληφέναι τὰς παρόδους, τὸ μὲν ταύτῃ ποιεῖσθαι τὴν διέξοδον ἀπέγνω, πορευθεὶς δὲ διὰ τῆς Φωκίδος, καὶ διεξελθὼν τὴν παραθαλαττίαν ὁδὸν χαλεπὴν οὖσαν, ἐνέβαλεν εἰς τὴν Βοιωτίαν ἀκινδύνως: ἐν παρόδῳ δέ τινα τῶν πολισματίων χειρωσάμενος δέκα τριήρων ἐγκρατὴς ἐγένετο.

I'm having trouble working out why there is a τὸ in "τὸ μὲν ταύτῃ ποιεῖσθαι ". My best guess is that even though ταύτῃ is nominally a femine dative it is acting as an adverb and so is treated as neuter when made into a noun by the article but the emphasis is on guess.

This is my current translation

Kleombrotos learning that the enemy had seized in advance the passes. by means of this (way) to make the passage-through he gave-up, and he marched instead through Fokis and passing-through the by-the-sea road difficult being, invaded into Boeotia safely:
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Re: Why τὸ in "τὸ μὲν ταύτῃ ποιεῖσθαι ?

Postby mwh » Sun Jun 08, 2014 6:05 pm

Not connected with ταυτη (which has to be adverbial, not substantival, and as such would be unlikely to have the article) nor with μεν (that would have a corresponding το δε in the 2nd clause) but substantivizing the infinitive, to make το μεν ταυτη ποιεισθαι την διεξοδον the direct object of απεγνω.

he gave up on the idea of getting out this way and by making his way through Phocis and getting out through the difficult coastal route invaded Boeotia without encountering any peril.
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Re: Why τὸ in "τὸ μὲν ταύτῃ ποιεῖσθαι ?

Postby daivid » Sun Jun 08, 2014 6:43 pm

mwh wrote:Not connected with ταυτη (which has to be adverbial, not substantival, and as such would be unlikely to have the article) nor with μεν (that would have a corresponding το δε in the 2nd clause) but substantivizing the infinitive, to make το μεν ταυτη ποιεισθαι την διεξοδον the direct object of απεγνω.

he gave up on the idea of getting out this way and by making his way through Phocis and getting out through the difficult coastal route invaded Boeotia without encountering any peril.


So if we reduce it down to its very barest essentials we get τὸ ποιεῖσθαι ie the making which is what he gave up on. Yes I should have noticed that an infinitive is the most likely candidate for an article. Thanks for making that clear. Much appreciated.
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