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Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

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Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby NateD26 » Sat Jun 05, 2010 1:24 pm

οὐ γὰρ δήπου σοῦ γε οὐδὲν τῶν ἄλλων περιττότερον πραγματευομένου
ἔπειτα τοσαύτη φήμη τε καὶ λόγος γέγονεν, εἰ μή τι ἔπραττες ἀλλοῖον ἢ οἱ πολλοί.


I don't quite understand this structure. The opening negative apparently negates γέγονεν. Should
i then take οὐδὲν as negation of πραγματευομένου or as an adverb for περιττότερον?
It confuses me how it should be read.

Here's my attempt:

For surely, if you were not engaging in anything different than everyone else,
then such a rumor and saying are (simply) nil*, unless you were doing something
other than [the] ordinary people.


*how am i suppose to translate οὐ γέγονεν here without it coming off so corny? γίγνομαι has the force of to be
in past tenses. does that mean also a present state from a past action (pf.), or only in relation to impf./aor./plpf.?
if the former is the case, then i could translate "have not come into being" as "(and thus) are nil/of no value."
Nate.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby Imber Ranae » Sat Jun 05, 2010 5:39 pm

NateD26 wrote:οὐ γὰρ δήπου σοῦ γε οὐδὲν τῶν ἄλλων περιττότερον πραγματευομένου
ἔπειτα τοσαύτη φήμη τε καὶ λόγος γέγονεν, εἰ μή τι ἔπραττες ἀλλοῖον ἢ οἱ πολλοί.


I don't quite understand this structure. The opening negative apparently negates γέγονεν. Should
i then take οὐδὲν as negation of πραγματευομένου or as an adverb for περιττότερον?
It confuses me how it should be read.


It looks like περιττότερον modifies οὐδὲν directly, so that οὐδὲν τῶν ἄλλων περιττότερον means something like "nothing more extraordinary than the others [have done]". That's more or less the same way you translated it.

NateD26 wrote:Here's my attempt:

For surely, if you were not engaging in anything different than everyone else,
then such a rumor and saying are (simply) nil*, unless you were doing something
other than [the] ordinary people.


*how am i suppose to translate οὐ γέγονεν here without it coming off so corny? γίγνομαι has the force of to be
in past tenses. does that mean also a present state from a past action (pf.), or only in relation to impf./aor./plpf.?
if the former is the case, then i could translate "have not come into being" as "(and thus) are nil/of no value."


I think the genitive absolute is circumstantial rather than conditional. If it were conditional wouldn't it then have to be μηδὲν instead of οὐδὲν? That's my understanding, anyway.

I'd translate οὐ...γέγονεν as just "has not come into being", or more idiomatically "has not arisen".

    "For surely such great rumor and talk has not arisen while you were doing nothing [at any rate] more extraordinary than the others, unless...[etc.]"

I'm not sure exactly what to do with ἔπειτα, though.
Ex mala malo
bono malo uesci
quam ex bona malo
malo malo malo.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby NateD26 » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:14 pm

Imber Ranae wrote:I think the genitive absolute is circumstantial rather than conditional. If it were conditional wouldn't it then have to be μηδὲν instead of οὐδὲν? That's my understanding, anyway.

You right. Should have paid attention to the negation word more carefully.
It seems to be circumstantial, as you said.

Imber Ranae wrote:I'd translate οὐ...γέγονεν as just "has not come into being", or more idiomatically "has not arisen".

    "For surely such great rumor and talk has not arisen while you were doing nothing [at any rate] more extraordinary than the others, unless...[etc.]"

I'm not sure exactly what to do with ἔπειτα, though.

Thanks. Perhaps ἔπειτα can be translated as expressing surprise, LSJ II.3..
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby Imber Ranae » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:17 pm

Actually, I think now that ἔπειτα is simply used to transition from the genitive absolute back into the main clause, which it interrupted. The word does not necessarily suggest the opening of an apodosis, as the English word "then" after such a clause normally would. Here's a very literal rendering:

    οὐ γὰρ δήπου σοῦ γε οὐδὲν τῶν ἄλλων περιττότερον πραγματευομένου
    ἔπειτα τοσαύτη φήμη τε καὶ λόγος γέγονεν, εἰ μή τι ἔπραττες ἀλλοῖον ἢ οἱ πολλοί.

    For surely not, with you [at any rate] engaged in nothing more extraordinary than the others, has such great rumor and talk [as this] then come into being, unless you were accomplishing something different than most.


ETA: Yeah, I think you're right that it does suggest "surprise" by emphasizing the opposition of the absolute clause to the main clause. I'm not sure "surprise" is the word I'd use to describe it, but that's what the LSJ calls it.
Ex mala malo
bono malo uesci
quam ex bona malo
malo malo malo.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby NateD26 » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:44 pm

maybe something like this then?

    For surely such a great rumor and saying has not arisen while you were engaging in nothing more extraordinary
    than everyone else -- why then? -- unless you were doing something other than ordinary people.
Nate.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby NateD26 » Sun Jun 06, 2010 4:54 am

See, this is also how I initially read γέγονεν...
as odd, and as standing in place of something more natural to the first part, (he reads it as conditional as well;
choice of negation aside...i think it is not negating the verb but the comp., so there's no need for
explaining why it is not μήδεν), I mean to say ἐγένετο ἄν. But since it has arisen, it is not an unrealistic condition anymore,
but something that has actually happened, hence pf.:

    Surely such a great rumor and saying would not have arisen then, as has arisen, if you were engaging in nothing more
    different than others, unless you were doing something other than the ordinary folks.


Again this colloquial style...why do teachers in college choose to read Apology first?
if the constructions are so off-the-cuff, as modus said in other threads, unpredictable and odd
to what has been taught in class for the better part of the year, why then do they choose this piece
over something that may better represent the traditional grammar rules they have learned?

I have not read anything other than few paragraphs of the Apology in class last year (before I dropped out),
so sadly, I wouldn't know which book to suggest, but surely there is a Platonian piece that is written in
a more traditional style.
Nate.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby modus.irrealis » Sun Jun 13, 2010 4:53 pm

I think besides tradition, the Apology comes first because many people enjoy it. I liked it enough that I've read it numerous times. And I'm not really a fan of most of the ideas in Plato's dialogues, but I think the Apology itself has a broader appeal.

About the language, I don't think it diverges too much from what you learn in first year. Xenophon is the other traditional first author and he has some quirks as well. But I think it's the orators, especially Lysias, that come closest to textbook Attic.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby NateD26 » Sun Jun 13, 2010 5:59 pm

I completely agree with you, modus. I also enjoy the Apology very much. :)

And thank you for the recommendation of Lysias as the closest to textbook Attic.
I will definitely start reading some of his speeches in English first, and then
try my luck with the originals.
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Re: Pl. Ap. 20c6-8

Postby IreneY » Sun Jun 13, 2010 11:37 pm

I love Lysias but personally (even his ridiculous "Hyper adynatou"), although in general I find him a tad boring, I'd say Isocrates. Arrian is the easiest of the historians (well, OK, Xenophon has some passages that are beautifully simple but others are delightful head-scratchers). Although an orator I wouldn't go near the slimy b*****d a.k.a. Demosthenes. His writing is beautiful and, to my mind, the best example of the ambiguity of participles, but he can be quite difficult.

Won't talk about Plato because I am biased (though I do like bits and pieces of his works a lot)
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