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Reading Thucydides 2014

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Scribo » Mon Jan 02, 2012 9:11 pm

I'm out since I'm joining an Aiskhylos group instead, sorry guys.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby jaihare » Mon Jan 02, 2012 10:58 pm

We're still four:
Baker
Bob Manske
pster
jaihare

Starting on Sunday, right?

Enjoy your other group, Scribo! ;)
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ὁ μὲν Παῦλος τοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις μαθητὰς τὴν χωρὶς νόμου δικαιοσύνην τὴν ἐν Χριστῷ ἐδίδασκεν, οἱ δ᾿ ἄλλοι ἀπόστολοι τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ἐδίδασκον τηρεῖν τὸν θεῖον νόμον τὸν χειρὶ Μωϋσέως δοθέντα.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Scribo » Tue Jan 03, 2012 12:09 am

Sorry, I really wanted to do some prose but somehow there were powerpoint presentations and shiny e-mails and I got really confused and went along with it. :S

Plus consider it my giving tragedy a fourth chance, I hate tragedy...
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:50 am

I have already started. And I am finding it quite enjoyable but quite hard. Maybe we should go for .5 pages per day? Read a page and tell me how long it takes you.

Also, I am very worried about the textkit virus problem. If I should disappear, that will be the reason. I had a bad computer problem last week and still haven't found the cause, so I am somewhat spooked.

Whatever happens though, I will be reading at least two hours per day of Th. until I am finished even if it takes a few years. 100%.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:51 am

Scribo wrote:Sorry, I really wanted to do some prose but somehow there were powerpoint presentations and shiny e-mails and I got really confused and went along with it. :S

Plus consider it my giving tragedy a fourth chance, I hate tragedy...


:x
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Wed Jan 04, 2012 12:53 am

jaihare wrote:We're still four:
Baker
Bob Manske
pster
jaihare



Have all those confirmed?
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Wed Jan 04, 2012 4:08 pm

Hi,

I admit, the fact that I get a warning every time I enter this site is a bit disconcerting but I'm willing to carry on anyway. As far as the length per day, perhaps we should consider it more on a weekly basis, reporting each week how far we have made it. This would allow us to get a better idea of each person's average progress and act accordingly in subsequent weeks. For me, the first page took about an hour and the second is proving to be more challenging. I'm willing to spend about 1.5 to 2 hours each day.

Cheers,
Eliot
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Wed Jan 04, 2012 7:15 pm

Well, these are two entirely different issues.

1) I am not sure if you read a full page. The first Oxford doesn't begin at the top. If I could read one full Oxford page per hour, then I would probably just read five pages per day and end up doing it on my own. What I propose is that we shoot for one half a page per day. At least that is all I can reasonably do. That will probably take me four hours. Now I expect that as I get into it, it will come faster. And as I said, I am in it for the long haul, no matter what happens. No matter how slowly I go, I will be reading Th. every day. Even if I disappear from this site for a while. In a sense, it doesn't matter if we go at varying speeds. If someone has a grammar question, we can all ponder it. Either we know the answer, or it will prepare us for what is to come. What I hope is that we can enrich the thread with secondary materials relating to grammar and syntax, but also relating to the history itself--in other words, all things Thucydides.

2) As for this virus problem. This is the second in a year. And it is just a warning until your computer goes down and you incur a huge cost in terms of $ or time. At the moment, another serious computer problem would be unacceptable for me. In years past, I would have had an extra machine to use for something like this, but I don't at the moment. So, like I say, if I disappear, keep reading. I will be! :D

But Eliot, I am really really glad you are on board. This community has great folks, but would need double to reach critical mass. I really look forward to reading what you have to say about Th., even if I have to go down to the internet cafe every couple of weeks to read it! Again, welcome and feel free to smash through 2 pages a day. It will be a thrill to watch you.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:30 pm

pster wrote:
Now I expect that as I get into it, it will come faster. And as I said, I am in it for the long haul, no matter what happens. No matter how slowly I go, I will be reading Th. every day. Even if I disappear from this site for a while. In a sense, it doesn't matter if we go at varying speeds. If someone has a grammar question, we can all ponder it. Either we know the answer, or it will prepare us for what is to come. What I hope is that we can enrich the thread with secondary materials relating to grammar and syntax, but also relating to the history itself--in other words, all things Thucydides.



I agree varying speeds won't matter. I like your emphasis on enriching the thread no matter the pace.

To all those who do participate, please post whatever thoughts you have as soon as possible after they arise. Perhaps jot them down while reading so you can remember them when signing on here. I firmly believe that Thucydides wrote as did Plato, expecting serious readers to probe the questions that the book addresses, allowing those questions to grow organically as you plow through the work.

Cheers,
Eliot

P.S. Thanks for addressing the suspicious site warning so that Jeff could fix it. It seems we will not have to worry about that any more.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Fri Jan 06, 2012 4:00 pm

Hey Eliot,

Yeah, I feel a little better now that the virus problem has subsided. I have several other projects that I am busy with, but I decided today that Thucydides will get priority over all of them! Haha. I thought about it and decided that there was probably nothing I wanted more out of Attic than to master this book. So I'm going to devote 4hrs per day to it for the next couple of years. But that doesn't necessarily mean that I'll be moving quickly. But I will be extremely thorough, for example, using it as a springboard for review of grammar and syntax. So I am going to pause over every little wrinkle. And I will happily entertain any question that anybody has about anything. Of course I'm not promising that I'll have anything intelligent to say!

The Perseus pages are excellent because they have two commentaries and the Hobbes translation. I may spring for the Hornblower commentaries at some point, but for now, the Morris and the Marchant commentaries seem pretty adequate, the Marchant perhaps a bit more accessible. As for Hobbes, I think it is excellent. I am not sure why anybody would choose another. Hobbes was one of the greatest English prose writers and his translation is probably the most literal of those available, and so best for folks like us.

I am curious if you have any thoughts about secondary literature. This came out in late 2010: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Thucydidean-The ... 64&sr=8-19
It looks excellent. Unfortunately, the price, like the price for his commentaries is steep. Maybe we could look at some secondary literature when we are halfway through?

Also, I wanted to use a French website to get some good vocabulary lists, but I find I now am without access. Does anybody have an ideas about how to compile vocabulary lists? To start, a list of characteristically Thucydidean words would be nice.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Fri Jan 06, 2012 7:50 pm

I think you will not be disappointed with all your effort in this book. I agree that Hobbes is the best, having a hard copy myself. I do find the Hornblower book intriguing from reading what is available in the Amazon preview but won't be able to spend time outside of Thucydides for now (though I like the idea of stepping back into outside sources once we are further in; maybe this summer?). One commentary I read which was intriguing and helpful is within a larger work called "History of Political Philosophy," edited by Joseph Cropsley and Leo Strauss. The essay is entitled "Thucydides" and is by David Bolotin. The book is available in most libraries so you should be able to get a hold of it. I think there must be more than one edition however since I don't think all of them have the Thucydides essay.

As for vocabulary, have you used the tool on Perseus. See here for help in using it to your advantage. For words essential to Thucydides, see especially the second bullet point under, "Things You Can Do With the Vocabulary Tool." Also, if you haven't used it already, I would recommend highly Marinone's work called, "Tutti I Verbi Greci". I have used that single book more than any other over the years.

Cheers,
Eliot
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Sat Jan 07, 2012 1:16 am

I complained about that thing in a thread once. For somethings--usually whatever I really want--it crashes. For others it produces nonsense. So I followed the instructions for A List of Key Words for a Text for Book I and I got exactly one result, the masculine singular definite article! But thanks for mentioning it because I did just get a list for Book I! 3150 words! 144 pages! Maybe I didn't want a vocabular list after all?
Remember:

Post by mingshey » Thu Feb 17, 2011 5:40 am
I had abandoned using Perseus Word List tool for the same reason for months. But I found a remedy for that. Just keep refreshing the page UNTIL the word list shows up. It could be just once, or dozens of times, but in the end it works. A little bit of nuissance, but getting a word list of a work is not what you need every minute.

I think I got rid of that Strauss book. I never read the Th. article. Didn't like any of the others that I did read. May still have it in a box. Dunno. Is it that good? I have JSTOR and access to a great library. Let me know if you have any other recommendations.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Bob Manske » Sat Jan 07, 2012 4:14 am

I'm still interested in reading but...
Pardon my ignorance. I haven't been part of textkit group before so, is there a special group I have to join, do I just send in a translation or comments or questions, and if so where do I post them? In other words, physically, how does this thing work? What's expected of me?

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby jaihare » Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:45 pm

Bob Manske wrote:I'm still interested in reading but...
Pardon my ignorance. I haven't been part of textkit group before so, is there a special group I have to join, do I just send in a translation or comments or questions, and if so where do I post them? In other words, physically, how does this thing work? What's expected of me?

Bob

I'm not translating. You're not required to send in a translation. If you translate it, that's for you. All we want, as far as I'm concerned, is to know that you're reading along and for you to submit questions and comments about the text here on the forum.

That's how I understand what we're doing.

Regards,
Jason
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ὁ μὲν Παῦλος τοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις μαθητὰς τὴν χωρὶς νόμου δικαιοσύνην τὴν ἐν Χριστῷ ἐδίδασκεν, οἱ δ᾿ ἄλλοι ἀπόστολοι τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ἐδίδασκον τηρεῖν τὸν θεῖον νόμον τὸν χειρὶ Μωϋσέως δοθέντα.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:50 pm

jaihare wrote:All we want, as far as I'm concerned, is to know that you're reading along and for you to submit questions and comments about the text here on the forum.


I second that.

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Sat Jan 07, 2012 11:01 pm

Just ordered this: http://bmcr.brynmawr.edu/2004/2004-08-15.html

Marchant Book I seems to have a good introduction: http://www.archive.org/stream/thucydide ... 5/mode/2up
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:43 am

Baker wrote:
jaihare wrote:All we want, as far as I'm concerned, is to know that you're reading along and for you to submit questions and comments about the text here on the forum.


I second that.

Eliot


I would just add three things.

1) It would be nice if the thread had some good Th. resources. For example, here is a good site: http://mkatz.web.wesleyan.edu/grk202/_b ... 1.a1e9.bak
Guy has some good vocabulary drills and other items.

If you do a google search for [i]thucydides syllabus site:.edu[/i], you get an idea of what people are teaching. I would like it if we could assemble a good bibliography of secondary literature--key items like Hornblower--and read some of the articles at some point.

2) I have an endless supply of grammar questions. I haven't posted any yet because I am feeling you guys out. But if you have any grammar questions, put them up! I'd rather work on your questions because you will be more interested in them and I have an endless supply anyway.

3) The community here is very small unfortunately. But I will be working on this every day for the next year or two. I was originally thinking in terms of quantity, but now I've gone way over to quality. I don't care when I finish, but I am interested in some level of mastery of Th. I would like to say that while there are no requirements besides reading and participating, it would be great if those of us so inclined could start to think about ways in which we could really enrich this thread.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:31 am

I have an endless supply of grammar questions. I haven't posted any yet because I am feeling you guys out. But if you have any grammar questions, put them up! I'd rather work on your questions because you will be more interested in them and I have an endless supply anyway.


I would be willing to work on a grammar question, I have Guy Cooper with an index to Thucydides.

I was originally thinking in terms of quantity, but now I've gone way over to quality. I don't care when I finish, but I am interested in some level of mastery of Th.


Sounds like a good plan. That has always been my approach to Tragedy, go slow, live with it for a while till it starts to make sense.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby jaihare » Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:33 am

Well, I've got a question about the beginning. :">

Θουκυδίδης Ἀθηναῖος ξυνέγραψε τὸν πόλεμον τῶν Πελοποννησίων καὶ Ἀθηναίων, ὡς ἐπολέμησαν πρὸς ἀλλήλους, ἀρξάμενος εὐθὺς καθισταμένου καὶ ἐλπίσας μέγαν τε ἔσεσθαι καὶ ἀξιολογώτατον τῶν προγεγενημένων, τεκμαιρόμενος ὅτι ἀκμάζοντές τε ᾖσαν ἐς αὐτὸν ἀμφότεροι παρασκευῇ τῇ πάσῃ καὶ τὸ ἄλλο Ἑλληνικὸν ὁρῶν ξυνιστάμενον πρὸς ἑκατέρους, τὸ μὲν εὐθύς, τὸ δὲ καὶ διανοούμενον.


I understand the underlined phrase to mean something like: having deemed [it] to be (fut. inf. of εἰμί) [the] great[est] and most noteworthy of the ones [wars] having happened before.

1. Why is ἔσεσθαι in the future? Why not εἶναι?

2. Does it matter that μέγαν isn't superlative here (cp. μέγιστος)? Does it still carry the superlative sense?

Thanks!
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ὁ μὲν Παῦλος τοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις μαθητὰς τὴν χωρὶς νόμου δικαιοσύνην τὴν ἐν Χριστῷ ἐδίδασκεν, οἱ δ᾿ ἄλλοι ἀπόστολοι τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ἐδίδασκον τηρεῖν τὸν θεῖον νόμον τὸν χειρὶ Μωϋσέως δοθέντα.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:35 am

Jason wrote:
Θουκυδίδης Ἀθηναῖος ξυνέγραψε τὸν πόλεμον τῶν Πελοποννησίων καὶ Ἀθηναίων, ὡς ἐπολέμησαν πρὸς ἀλλήλους, ἀρξάμενος εὐθὺς καθισταμένου καὶ ἐλπίσας μέγαν τε ἔσεσθαι καὶ ἀξιολογώτατον τῶν προγεγενημένων, τεκμαιρόμενος ὅτι ἀκμάζοντές τε ᾖσαν ἐς αὐτὸν ἀμφότεροι παρασκευῇ τῇ πάσῃ καὶ τὸ ἄλλο Ἑλληνικὸν ὁρῶν ξυνιστάμενον πρὸς ἑκατέρους, τὸ μὲν εὐθύς, τὸ δὲ καὶ διανοούμενον.


I understand the underlined phrase to mean something like: having deemed [it] to be (fut. inf. of εἰμί) [the] great[est] and most noteworthy of the ones [wars] having happened before.

1. Why is ἔσεσθαι in the future? Why not εἶναι?

2. Does it matter that μέγαν isn't superlative here (cp. μέγιστος)? Does it still carry the superlative sense?


The perspective of ἔσεσθαι is that of the author who set out at the very beginning ἀρξάμενος εὐθὺς καθισταμένου to record what he believed/hoped would be (future) the mother of all wars.

You don't need two superlatives, the following superlative ἀξιολογώτατον creates a sort of semantic acceleration of degree from μέγαν. I'm winging it here, but I don't recall seeing a lot of paired superlatives joined by a conjunction.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:10 pm

Jason,

It seems that you are missing ἐλπίσας in your rendition, which is important for ironing out the difficulties. With ἐλπίσας plus ἔσεσθαι, we get "hoping/expecting that it would be..."

μέγαν remains as "great" and needn't be otherwise. He is hoping/expecting that the war will be great but I think that he wishes to focus more on its being, "ἀξιολογώτατον τῶν προγεγενημένων," especially since that is where he comes in and he is providing a justification for such a role here in the introduction.

Hence: "expecting that it would be great and the most noteworthy of all that had been before it." Make note of your final participle there and remember it is in the perfect middle and needs to fit with the time of the previous clause.



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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby jaihare » Tue Jan 10, 2012 10:57 pm

Actually, I was taking ἐλπίσας to mean "deemed" rather than "expected."

From LSJ:
c. pres. inf., deem, suppose that . ., Emp.11.2; ἐλπίζων εἶναι . . ὀλβιώτατος Hdt. 1.30; ἐλπίζων σιτοδείην τε εἶναι ἰσχυρὴν . . καὶ τὸν λεὼν τετρῦσθαι ib. 22; οἰκότα ἐλπίζων ib.27, cf. A.Th.76, Ch.187; βοῦν ἢ λέοντ' ἤλπιζες ἐντείνειν βρόχοις; E.Andr.720; ἐλπίζει δυνατὸς εἶναι ἄρχειν Pl.R. 573c; ὅστις ἐλπίζει θεοὺς . . χαίρειν ἀπαρχαῖς Trag.Adesp.118.2: sts. of future events, τίς ἂν ἤλπισεν ἁμαρτήσεσθαί τινα τῶν πολιτῶν τοιαύτην ἁμαρτίαν; Lys.31.27; οὐδὲν . . ποιήσειν ἐλπίζων D.4.7.


The 1910 translation on Perseus has:
"and believing that it would be a great war, and more worthy of relation than any that had preceded it."

Benjamin Jowett (1881) on Perseus also has:
"believing that it would be great and memorable above any previous war."

But the other translation from 1843 on Perseus says:
"with expectation it should prove a great one and most worthy the relation of all that had been before it"

I took ἐλπίσας into account, but I didn't take it as "hoping" or "expecting." I figure that he wrote about the war after it had already happened, which means that he wasn't expecting anything of it, but he deemed or considered it to be great and most noteworthy.

:shrug: That's how I took it, anyway.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Tue Jan 10, 2012 11:39 pm

jaihare wrote:Actually, I was taking ἐλπίσας to mean "deemed" rather than "expected."


Ah, my error, I didn't note "deemed". But your section from LSJ says "c. pres. inf.", whereas this is a future infinitive, addressed in section one of the entry: "freq. with a dependent clause in inf., hope to do, or hope or expect that..," followed by examples with the future infinitive.

Although Thucydides was writing about a war that had already occurred, his hoping/expecting is in direct relation to his first statement where he says he wrote the war as they warred against each other and not after it was completed. My question is why does he put ἐπολέμηςαν rather than ἐπολέμουv?

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby jaihare » Wed Jan 11, 2012 12:30 am

Baker wrote:
jaihare wrote:Actually, I was taking ἐλπίσας to mean "deemed" rather than "expected."


Ah, my error, I didn't note "deemed". But your section from LSJ says "c. pres. inf.", whereas this is a future infinitive, addressed in section one of the entry: "freq. with a dependent clause in inf., hope to do, or hope or expect that..," followed by examples with the future infinitive.

Although Thucydides was writing about a war that had already occurred, his hoping/expecting is in direct relation to his first statement where he says he wrote the war as they warred against each other and not after it was completed. My question is why does he put ἐπολέμηςαν rather than ἐπολέμουv?

Eliot


You're right that he placed the "hoping" with the lining up of the armies (καθισταμένου), so it might just be better understood as "hoped," but I don't know. Doesn't really matter, I guess. :)

What is the ὡς clause associated with there, anyway? Is it tied to the previous clause or the following one?

In the 1910 translation above, it seems to be neglected:
"Thucydides, an Athenian, wrote the history of the war between the Peloponnesians and the Athenians, beginning at the moment that it broke out, and believing that it would be a great war, and more worthy of relation than any that had preceded it."

The other two somehow tie the phrase into the first clause. Should this mean to us that he was writing the book throughout the war, having started his writing itself (and not just his subject) at the breakout of the war? I would also, then, think that the πολεμέω would appear in the imperfect. Or, do you think it's an inceptive aorist - "as they began to fight against each other"?
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ὁ μὲν Παῦλος τοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις μαθητὰς τὴν χωρὶς νόμου δικαιοσύνην τὴν ἐν Χριστῷ ἐδίδασκεν, οἱ δ᾿ ἄλλοι ἀπόστολοι τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ἐδίδασκον τηρεῖν τὸν θεῖον νόμον τὸν χειρὶ Μωϋσέως δοθέντα.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:18 am

I think the phrase ἀρξάμενος εὐθὺς καθισταμένου refers to his writing and, therefore, it seems he started to write at the outset.

As for the ὡς clause, I take it to refer to the prior statement. The 1910 translation seems odd in many respects. For example, it seems to translate τεκμαιρόμενος as "This belief was not without its grounds." I don't know what to say about that!

Smyth (1944) helps with the aorist/imperfect question, I think. He says, "In subordinate clauses the action expressed by the aorist may be (a) contemporaneous, (b) antecedent, or (c) subsequent to that set forth by the main verb. The context alone decides in which sense the aorist is to be taken." He then gives a nice quote from Thucydides 1.138 which has the same sense as the one we are dealing with. So now my question is, after having used Smyth for a while now, did the man ever sleep?

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby jaihare » Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:23 pm

Baker wrote:I think the phrase ἀρξάμενος εὐθὺς καθισταμένου refers to his writing and, therefore, it seems he started to write at the outset.

As for the ὡς clause, I take it to refer to the prior statement. The 1910 translation seems odd in many respects. For example, it seems to translate τεκμαιρόμενος as "This belief was not without its grounds." I don't know what to say about that!

Smyth (1944) helps with the aorist/imperfect question, I think. He says, "In subordinate clauses the action expressed by the aorist may be (a) contemporaneous, (b) antecedent, or (c) subsequent to that set forth by the main verb. The context alone decides in which sense the aorist is to be taken." He then gives a nice quote from Thucydides 1.138 which has the same sense as the one we are dealing with. So now my question is, after having used Smyth for a while now, did the man ever sleep?

Eliot


LOL @ Smyth sleeping!!! Strangely enough, I sleep with Smyth beside me quite often nowadays. :)

I looked up the ingressive aorist last night and he gave ἐπολέμησα as one of the ingressives, giving it the meaning "began the war." (I'd always called this "inceptive," but he calls it "ingressive" in §1924.) Do you think this ingressive/inceptive aspect is intended here?
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ὁ μὲν Παῦλος τοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις μαθητὰς τὴν χωρὶς νόμου δικαιοσύνην τὴν ἐν Χριστῷ ἐδίδασκεν, οἱ δ᾿ ἄλλοι ἀπόστολοι τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ἐδίδασκον τηρεῖν τὸν θεῖον νόμον τὸν χειρὶ Μωϋσέως δοθέντα.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Thu Jan 12, 2012 3:33 am

jaihare wrote:Do you think this ingressive/inceptive aspect is intended here?


I hadn't noted that entry and yes I think it works quite well here, especially in the sense of 1925 b. where he says, "The aorist of these verbs denotes also a simple occurrence of the action as an historical fact." With that in mind, I don't think it needs to be "began the war," but could be as Hobbes translates it: "as they warred..."
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Thu Jan 12, 2012 10:01 pm

1:1:3

... ἐκ δὲ τεκμηρίων ὧν ἐπὶ μακρότατον σκοποῦντί μοι πιστεῦσαι ξυμβαίνει οὐ μεγάλα νομίζω γενέσθαι οὔτε κατὰ τοὺς πολέμους οὔτε ἐς τὰ ἄλλα.

The syntax here is marvelous. G. Cooper (vol. 1, 51.92.2.B) joins (construes) the relative ὧν with the participle σκοποῦντί μοι. ἐπὶ μακρότατο limits σκοποῦντί. πιστεῦσαι ξυμβαίνει where ξυμβαίνει indicates that πιστεῦσαι is a consequence following from τεκμηρίων ὧν ἐπὶ μακρότατον σκοποῦντί μοι. This is a first cut. Open to revision.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Dracodon » Fri Jan 13, 2012 11:57 am

This post may be a little late, but I'd like to join this group.

I started reading the OCT on 8 Jan, and so far I have managed to keep up with one page per day.

My goal is reading and understanding, rather than translation or detailed analysis.

I'm using the following approach:
1. Read through the whole page at my normal speed, while seeking to understand as much as possible in this first reading.
2. Go through the page again, but this time if I don't understand something, I will look up unfamiliar words or grammar as I go along.
3. Read through the page again at my normal speed.

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Fri Jan 13, 2012 9:34 pm

1.2.4
διὰ γὰρ ἀρετὴν γῆς αἵ τε
δυνάμεις τισὶ μείζους ἐγγιγνόμεναι στάσεις ἐνεποίουν ἐξ ὧν
ἐφθείροντο, καὶ ἅμα ὑπὸ ἀλλοφύλων μᾶλλον ἐπεβουλεύοντο.

τισὶ is demoted to a dative, Thucydides seems to have a habit of throwing human participants into oblique cases where one might expect them to be in the foreground. Here the excellence of the land ἀρετὴν γῆς occasions the exaltation of some αἵ τε δυνάμεις τισὶ μείζους ἐγγιγνόμεναι leading to (internal) distention στάσεις ἐνεποίουν which in turn becomes an occasion for other tribes ὑπὸ ἀλλοφύλων to lay plots ἐπεβουλεύοντο against [those who currently hold the more valuable land].

This is all pretty abstract. People are just types of groups who are driven by economic forces to do this or that. Like reading an ancient sociologist.

I have managed to keep up with one page per day.


But how are we going to discuss this for mutual benefit if no one is "on the same page"?
I am willing to skip ahead for discussion, but there hasn't been much in the way of questions so far.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Sat Jan 14, 2012 12:07 am

C.S. wrote:But how are we going to discuss this for mutual benefit if no one is "on the same page"?
I am willing to skip ahead for discussion, but there hasn't been much in the way of questions so far.


This is precisely why I suggested we give weekly updates so that those ahead could slow down a bit and chew on the finer points of the previous week's reading. However, it occurs to me now that, as an alternative, we could just put our current position in our signature each time we post so that readjustment of other members can be more immediate. What do you all think? I will put my position just in case this suits others.

I think it is important that we stay together for the sake of discussion, otherwise we will lose the beauty of having this be a group activity.


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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Sat Jan 14, 2012 1:03 am

C. S. Bartholomew wrote:
I have managed to keep up with one page per day.


But how are we going to discuss this for mutual benefit if no one is "on the same page"?
I am willing to skip ahead for discussion, but there hasn't been much in the way of questions so far.


Well, having taught many a university course, I can attest to the fact that the students are never all on the same page. I guarantee you there are students at top universities right this very minute who are way way behind on their Thucydides reading. Certainly much many more than 6 pages, which is the maxium that one can be behind at this moment! People have other commitments. And the text is long. And there are tortises and hares and all that. For my part, I read about three pages, then decided to order Book I with commentary and notes because I don't like sitting in front of the computer to use the commentaries, and for Plato and Demosthenes, rightly or wrongly, I liked the convenience of having a lot of the vocabulary in the same text. I looked up so many words in dictionaries last year, I felt like I was on an assembly line. So I am waiting for that book to arrive--hoped it would be here by now. In the meantime, I have been doing a lot of Greek, just not Th. Also, I expect to go much slower in the beginning, but then to speed up gradually, something I should have thought about at the outset. But I am super commited to this for the long long haul. We'll see who makes it to the end! :D

I like Eliot's idea of putting our location in the text up, but I am happy to talk about a passage from Book 8. As far as grammar goes, I don't see how much it matters where we are. I do think we should all try to keep up with the thread also.

But I think it is great how many people have joined and I think this will be a great great thread. Welcome Dracodon! We have probably reached critical mass. If you have 2 people, you have 1 interaction, 3 people, 3 interactions, 4 people, 6 interactions, 5 people, 10 interactions, 6 people, 15 interactions! We seem to have at least 5, so that's a lot of interactions. (And if you also count three, four and five way interactions, there are 36 possible interactions!) At the current rate, the thread will grow to 700 pages and have 25000 posts.

C S Bartholomew, feel free to organize whatever discussions you want. I have been kicking around ideas for secondary literature. In that case, we can "require" folks to have done the reading by a certain date. Perhaps after we finish Book I, we can read some articles, and we can have presenters give short prepared remarks, then answer questions, say on Thursday nights.

How do folks see the balance between grammar, history, and political theory/philosophy in the thread?
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Sat Jan 14, 2012 1:41 am

pster wrote:...but I am happy to talk about a passage from Book 8. As far as grammar goes, I don't see how much it matters where we are. I do think we should all try to keep up with the thread also.


I agree with all of this and am equally thrilled that more folks have joined in.

I think it might be nice for many of us to use the Cambridge Greek and Latin Classics edition of Book II when we get there. Having used the series in the past (Plato, Herodotus), I can attest that it is a very professionally made series and I, for one, found it outstandingly helpful; it is aimed at helping students to learn to read the particular author and generally excels at doing so. I would be surprised if the Thucydides were any different.

As a side note, what have you taught at university, pster?

Cheers,
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Baker » Sat Jan 14, 2012 2:02 am

I was just looking at the Hornblower Commentary on Amazon and wondering if we could really find a better companion. If only it weren't $200 to obtain all three volumes. While fretting about the price, I was able to find some humor. Amazon lists the number of pages for the three volume set as 56053! If you purchase each volume separately, you get about 2200 pages total. What a steal! How sublime and fulfilling it would be to read those "extra" 54000 pages. :lol:
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Scribo » Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:17 am

The Hornblower commentary is, frankly, amazing and was a great help during my having to study the Pelop. War. but if you're not studying the text for a specific reason it can be avoided, as the price may suggest.

There are some Green and Yellows which are good as is the "grammatical commentary"
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:47 pm

Got my Cameron, Student's Grammatical Commentary. I was miffed though as I thought it contained the text to Bk. I. But it looks pretty good. He has lots and lots of Smyth numbers and thinks Smyth is great for Th. Maybe I'll buy a BCP tonight because I still want one self-contained volume; I guess it is just a dressed up Marchant.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby C. S. Bartholomew » Wed Jan 18, 2012 6:49 am

Pster wrote:
I was miffed though as I thought it contained the text to Bk. I. But it looks pretty good. He has lots and lots of Smyth numbers and thinks Smyth is great for Th. Maybe I'll buy a BCP tonight because I still want one self-contained volume;


I hear you. I like the old NT commentaries with the greek at the top of the page and notes in a double column at the bottom. Not having the greek text on the page is a major drawback.

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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Dracodon » Thu Jan 19, 2012 1:23 pm

Cyrus Gordon says that if you take the trouble to understand and memorise the grammar and vocabulary in the first twenty pages of a book in another language, then you will be able to read the rest of the book with scarcely any need of a dictionary.

So I am thinking that towards the end of January I will go back and review the first twenty or so pages - and make sure I have committed to memory all the grammar and words new to me.

Thanks Pster for starting up this reading group. I bought the OCT Thucydides in a second-hand book shop some time ago but kept getting sidetracked by Homer and Aristophanes. This thread provided the little push I needed to get me started on the Histories.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby pster » Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:26 pm

Dracodon wrote:Cyrus Gordon says that if you take the trouble to understand and memorise the grammar and vocabulary in the first twenty pages of a book in another language, then you will be able to read the rest of the book with scarcely any need of a dictionary.

So I am thinking that towards the end of January I will go back and review the first twenty or so pages - and make sure I have committed to memory all the grammar and words new to me.



It is funny you should mention this, because I was thinking basically the same thing this last week. I was struggling with another text in another language, but finally got some old verb and old pronoun forms straight, and now everything is moving forward at a decent and ever increasing pace.

And I started Thucydides in earnest and I have been studying some of the quintessentially Thucydidean devices, such as the substantive neuter participle and prolepsis, in hope that there will be a good return later on the time invested now. So basically, I am taking the first 20 pages--broadly understood--very slowly to make sure that I understand everything. I'll post some questions and comments soon.
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Re: Thinking about Thucydides 2012

Postby Bob Manske » Sun Jan 22, 2012 6:22 am

In 1.23.3 he says that eclipses happened more frequently during the Peloponnesian War. I don't know about that. Here's a list of all eclipses visible in Greece during the period. Dates are astronomical, so for BCE subtract one more. In other words -0477 = 478 BCE.

Annular eclipses would not have been particularly noticeable unless you were really looking for them or you were in the eclipse path. Even then, the sky gets a little darker and the temperature falls a few degrees but that's it. And it's over fairly quickly. Only the ones in -0487 and -0477 would have been really apparent in Greece and those precede the period we're interested in. Although both might have been connected with the Persian attacks on Greece a few years earlier. Yet they were annular.

The total eclipse which passed through Greece in -0401 would have been spectacular. But after the war.

Here's the list:

Annular -0487 Sep 01 Thessalia, northern Anatolia
Perhaps noticeable in Athens

Annualar -0477 Feb 17 Pelopenessos, Attika, Dardanelles, Crimea,
Noticeable, but not work stopping

Total -0462 Apr 30 Tarantum, Albania, Makedonia, northern Anatolia
Perhaps noticeable, but before the war.

Annular -0430 08 03 through Romania, central Anatolia, into northern Iraq, may have been visible to interested parties in Greece, but not at all very darkening.

Annular in -0403 Sep 03, northern Romania, Crimea, Casipan Sea, same as above

Total eclipse -0401 Jan 18, Rome, Tarantum, Peloponnesos, Attika, Rhodos, south of Cyprus, Lebanon, Babylon.
Spectacularly visible. And definitely a work stopper. But after the war.

This is not to my mind an outrageous, or possibly even noticeable, increase in eclipse frequency. But of interest may be the two annulars which bracket the war. I don't know.

For reference: Those of you in the U.S. may remember the annular eclipse of +1994 May 10. It went through southern NM, the TX panhandle, up into central Illinois, over Lake Erie, the Adirondaks, and out through Northern New England and Nova Scotia. Or maybe, even if you were old enough, you don't remember it. That's the kind of impression most annulars give. I remember it only because I took my dog and telescope and camera to Champaign Illinois to observe it. It was fun but the dog was unimpressed. Didn't even give a poop. It was not particularly noticeable from Madison, only a couple of hundred miles north.

There's a total eclipse passing through Cairo Illinois on +2017 Aug 21. I'm waiting on that one.

In another thread someone was mentioning an eclipse for +2012 May 20. Not far off. The California/Oregon boundary to Lubbock Texas. It will be - annular. Interestingly, it's in the same Saros cycle as the one in +1994.


Source: Fred Espenak's atlas of solar eclipse paths, NASA.
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