Please help me again

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Bert
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Please help me again

Post by Bert » Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:01 pm

I can't figure this one out at all.
ἴσθι σοφὸν δὴ ὄντα τὸν μῶ?ον τὸν πα?' ἡμῖν·

I think that ἴσθι has to be 'know' rather than 'be' because I am taking σοφόν as accusative masculine not nominative (neuter nominative does not seem to make sense with an imperative.) Imperatives from εἰμί take predicate nominatives as well don't they?
I take ὄντα as a substantive for the same reason, no nominative.
For the rest, I can not sew this into a coherent sentence.
Know wisdom (or know a smart thing) ....the dim-wit, the one with us.

spiphany
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Post by spiphany » Sun Jun 04, 2006 11:59 pm

That sounds like something from Plato.
I'm not absolutely certain about what the sentence should mean here, particularly since it's out of context. But a couple of things which might help:

Indirect statements can be expressed several ways, depending on what the main verb is:
1) ?τι/ὡς + a conjugated verb
2) infinitive and accusative subject*
3) participle in the accusative*
Obviously, the third one is what you have here.

Second, look at the position of the article. μῶ?ον has the article, which makes it the subject of ὄντα. πα?' ἡμῖν is also in attributive position, so it modifies μῶ?ον: "the fool in the presence of us". σοφὸν lacks an article, which makes it a predicate adjective.


* Or nominative if the subject is the same as the main verb
IPHIGENIE: Kann uns zum Vaterland die Fremde werden?
ARKAS: Und dir ist fremd das Vaterland geworden.
IPHIGENIE: Das ist's, warum mein blutend Herz nicht heilt.
(Goethe, Iphigenie auf Tauris)

Bert
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Post by Bert » Mon Jun 05, 2006 1:52 am

Regarding the context;
It is from a story written by W.H.D. Rouse. It is called; A Greek Boy at Home.
The Greek authors drawn from includes Plato so it is very well possible that this particular line was inspired by something Plato wrote.
This story is written in the format of short paragraphs about various topics.
There has been a section about something like 'the town fool'.
That makes the part about "the fool in the presence of us" seem right.
It is likely referring back to this μῶ?ον.
ἴσθι σοφὸν δὴ ὄντα τὸν μῶ?ον τὸν πα?' ἡμῖν·
ἄκουε γὰ?.
?πύ?εττε μὲν ? μῶ?ος· καὶ κατακλιθεὶς ?πὶ κλίνης μεγάλῃ τῇ φωνῇ ?βόα. μετεπέμψατο δ'ἰατ?όν, ἵνα σωθείη· ? δ' ἰατ?ὸς ?λθών, καὶψαυσάμενος α?τοῦ, "οἴμοι, ἔφη, κακῶς πυ?έττεις," ? δὲ μῶ?ος τοῦτ; ἀκούσας ὠ?γίσθη, καὶ εἶπεν· "ε?φήμει, ὦ ἄνθ?ωπε· ο? γά? σε μετεπεμψάμην ἵνα λοιδοηθείης μοι. εἰ δὲ σὺ ἄμεινον πυ?έττειν οἷός τ' εἶ, ἰδοὺ κλίνη· κατακλιθεὶς πύ?εττε," μετὰ ταῦτα λέγει τις τῶν πα?όντων, "τί δεῖ ἰατ?ῶν; σεμνοὶ φαίνονται, πολλὰ λέγουσι, μισθὸν αἰτοῦσιν· ἄμεινον πλεῖν ?πὶ τὸ Ἀσκληπίειον τὸ ?ν Ἐπιδαύ?ῳ."

That is the context.

The sections somewhat build on the previous ones, as you can see by the occurance of οἷός τ' εἰμί , The idiom you helped me with before.

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Skylax
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Post by Skylax » Mon Jun 05, 2006 12:41 pm

In my view, it means simply "(please) know that the fool (who lives) among us is (really) wise", so "be assured that our local town fool is wise".

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Post by Bert » Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:07 am

One more question about this;
Why are σοφὸν and τὸν μῶ?ον in the accusative case eventhough they are the subject and predicate of the assumed verb e)sti/n?

I

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Post by spiphany » Tue Jun 06, 2006 2:41 pm

I suspect it's because the whole clause (indirect statement) is considered to be the object of ἴσθι. The construction is usual in Greek, perhaps somewhat parallel to the accusative + infinitive construction. The only time it's not accusative is when the subject of the participle is the same as the subject of the main verb (e.g. "I know that I..."), in which case it goes in the nominative. This also helps emphasize why the participle needs to be in the accusative: since it's not separated from the main verb by a conjunction, there has to be some way to differentiate the subordinated clause from the subject of the main sentence.
IPHIGENIE: Kann uns zum Vaterland die Fremde werden?
ARKAS: Und dir ist fremd das Vaterland geworden.
IPHIGENIE: Das ist's, warum mein blutend Herz nicht heilt.
(Goethe, Iphigenie auf Tauris)

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Skylax
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Post by Skylax » Wed Jun 07, 2006 7:17 pm

I agree completely with spiphany.
spiphany wrote: The only time it's not accusative is when the subject of the participle is the same as the subject of the main verb (e.g. "I know that I..."), in which case it goes in the nominative.
Example : οἶδ' ἀνόητος ὤν "I know that I am silly."

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