Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

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Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Fri Jun 28, 2019 7:54 am

Welcome to the Odyssey Reading Group! Anyone is welcome to join, regardless of their Greek ability. If you’re itching to explore Homer’s epic tale of survival, adventure, love, lust, kinship, betrayal and spooky dead people, hop on in, you’ll be very welcome. People who have some Greek but have never tried reading Homer before are doubly welcome.

Check the introductory thread for a description of how the group works.

We’re working from Geoffrey Steadman’s Odyssey Books 6-8, a freely-available pdf
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An introduction to Book 6 and a list of resources for deeper study are available in the group dropbox folder

I’ve also been making flashcards to go with Steadman’s text (vocab occurring >8 times in Books 6-8)
Next week (Friday 5th July) we’ll be reading Book 6 Lines 93-118
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Fri Jun 28, 2019 8:01 am

This week's text

71 ὣς εἰπὼν δμώεσσιν ἐκέκλετο, τοὶ δ ̓ ἐπίθοντο. 72 οἱ μὲν ἄρ ̓ ἐκτὸς ἄμαξαν ἐύτροχον ἡμιονείην 73 ὥπλεον, ἡμιόνους θ ̓ ὕπαγον ζεῦξάν θ ̓ ὑπ ̓ ἀπήνῃ· 74 κούρη δ ̓ ἐκ θαλάμοιο φέρεν ἐσθῆτα φαεινήν. 75 καὶ τὴν μὲν κατέθηκεν ἐϋξέστῳ ἐπ ̓ ἀπήνῃ, 76 μήτηρ δ ̓ ἐν κίστῃ ἐτίθει μενοεικέ ̓ ἐδωδὴν 77 παντοίην, ἐν δ ̓ ὄψα τίθει, ἐν δ ̓ οἶνον ἔχευεν 78 ἀσκῷ ἐν αἰγείῳ· κούρη δ ̓ ἐπεβήσετ ̓ ἀπήνης. 79 δῶκεν δὲ χρυσέῃ ἐν ληκύθῳ ὑγρὸν ἔλαιον, 80 ἧος χυτλώσαιτο σὺν ἀμφιπόλοισι γυναιξίν. 81 ἡ δ ̓ ἔλαβεν μάστιγα καὶ ἡνία σιγαλόεντα, 82 μάστιξεν δ ̓ ἐλάαν· καναχὴ δ ̓ ἦν ἡμιόνοιϊν. 83 αἱ δ ̓ ἄμοτον τανύοντο, φέρον δ ̓ ἐσθῆτα καὶ αὐτήν, 84 οὐκ οἴην, ἅμα τῇ γε καὶ ἀμφίπολοι κίον ἄλλαι. 85 αἱ δ ̓ ὅτε δὴ ποταμοῖο ῥόον περικαλλέ ̓ ἵκοντο, 86 ἔνθ ̓ ἦ τοι πλυνοὶ ἦσαν ἐπηετανοί, πολὺ δ ̓ ὕδωρ 87 καλὸν ὑπεκπρόρεεν μάλα περ ῥυπόωντα καθῆραι, 88 ἔνθ ̓ αἵ γ ̓ ἡμιόνους μὲν ὑπεκπροέλυσαν ἀπήνης. 89 καὶ τὰς μὲν σεῦαν ποταμὸν πάρα δινήεντα 90 τρώγειν ἄγρωστιν μελιηδέα· ταὶ δ ̓ ἀπ ̓ ἀπήνης 91 εἵματα χερσὶν ἕλοντο καὶ ἐσφόρεον μέλαν ὕδωρ, 92 στεῖβον δ ̓ ἐν βόθροισι θοῶς ἔριδα προφέρουσαι.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Fri Jun 28, 2019 8:03 am

Would someone else mind starting us off this week?
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Kakakephales » Sun Jun 30, 2019 9:27 pm

Χαίρετε πάντες!

I just found this forum and thought I would give this passage a go. I haven't done any Greek in a while, so I'd welcome any feedback.

I wasn't sure quite what to make of σεῦαν at line 89, so I took it with ἄγρωστιν as something grammatically possible that made sense. EDIT: This must be from σεύω, I'm a bit rusty.

In line 74, is the second foot of φέρεν long?

Translation:
Speaking so, he ordered his servants, and they obeyed.
Then they readied the the well-wheeled mule-drawn wagon outside,
led mules under and also yoked them to the wagon.
And they set it (sc. the clothing) down in the well-polished wagon,
And [her] mother put in a chest every sort of food in abundance,
And she put in meats, and she poured wine into
into a goat's hide wineskin; and the girl mounted the wagon.
And she (sc. her mother) gave [her] wet oil in a golden flask,
so that she might bathe herself with the serving women.
And she took the whip and shining reins,
and whipped [the mules] to drive them [forth]; and there was a rattling of the two mules.
And they ran eagerly, and bore the clothes and her,
not alone, indeed all the handmaidens went with her at the same time.
And when indeed they came to the beautiful stream of the river,
there, sure enough, were ever-flowing washing basins, and much beautiful water
flowed so as to clean [the] very dirty [clothes],
There indeed they freed the mules from under the wagon.
And these [went] by the whirling river
to eat their sweet grass. And from the wagon
they took the clothes in their hands and carried them into the black water,
and they washed them in the troughs swiftly to offer a challenge [to one another].

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Sun Jun 30, 2019 11:45 pm

Line 74 φέρεν , second foot is long because ἐσθῆτα previously had a digamma at the beginning of the word, so φέρεν ϝεσθῆτα

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Barry Hofstetter » Mon Jul 01, 2019 3:09 pm

Teenage girls turning laundry day into game day. Right, reading my own culture back into it. Or maybe things really haven't changed all that much in the last 3,000 or so years.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:00 am

Kakakephales wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 9:27 pm
Χαίρετε πάντες!

I just found this forum and thought I would give this passage a go. I haven't done any Greek in a while, so I'd welcome any feedback.
Hi! Welcome to textkit, and to this reading group. Folk here are very helpful if you have any questions.

And thanks for posting a translation, I'll post some thoughts below.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:42 am

Kakakephales wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 9:27 pm

As a literal translation, there's not much to object to.

Translation:
Speaking so, he ordered his servants, and they obeyed.
Then they readied the the well-wheeled mule-drawn wagon outside,
led mules under and also yoked them to the wagon.
And they set it (sc. the clothing) down in the well-polished wagon,

You seem to have skipped over line 74, which I think is why you've got 'they' as the subject here instead of κούρη from the line before (and now you'll kick yourself about κατέθηκεν being 3rd person singular).

And [her] mother put in a chest every sort of food in abundance,
And she put in meats, and she poured wine into
into a goat's hide wineskin; and the girl mounted the wagon.
And she (sc. her mother) gave [her] wet oil in a golden flask,

Most translations seem to avoid ὑγρὸν in this line and just say oil, I suppose because 'wet oil' and 'liquid oil' don't make much sense in English. Maybe 'running oil' or 'free-flowing oil' would give a sense of its quality? It's also used in Homer to describe milk and water, incidentally, which seem even stranger with 'wet'.

so that she might bathe herself with the serving women.
And she took the whip and shining reins,
and whipped [the mules] to drive them [forth]; and there was a rattling of the two mules.

There's no problem with 'of the two mules' in terms of the Greek, but as Steadman notes it might make clearer English either to translate it as 'a rattling of the mule-wagon' or perhaps 'and the two mules made a rattling noise' if you want to keep the wagon out of it.

And they ran eagerly, and bore the clothes and her,
not alone, indeed all the handmaidens went with her at the same time.

What have you translated as 'all' in this line - ἄλλαι?

And when indeed they came to the beautiful stream of the river,
there, sure enough, were ever-flowing washing basins, and much beautiful water
flowed so as to clean [the] very dirty [clothes],
There indeed they freed the mules from under the wagon.

I'd been meaning to post about ὑπεκπρόρεεν and ὑπεκπροέλυσαν so I'll do that below. Rendering them as flowed and freed is fine, though.

And these [went] by the whirling river

You've already picked up on your own error here missing the verb.

to eat their sweet grass. And from the wagon
they took the clothes in their hands and carried them into the black water,
and they washed them in the troughs swiftly to offer a challenge [to one another].
It's a very serviceable literal translation, I think. Now maybe you could try turning it into a less literal translation to play with the text a bit? This group is only a few weeks old, but the focus so far has been on the Greek and on wider problems of interpretation, so I'd be very keen to get a bit more translation going on.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seneca2008 » Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:43 am

As I have said before I find this passage amusing and a parody of heroic action.

3.475-481 is a parallel passage describing the departure of Telemachus from Nestor's palace to Sparta.

“παῖδες ἐμοί, ἄγε Τηλεμάχῳ καλλίτριχας ἵππους
ζεύξαθ᾿ ὑφ᾿ ἅρματ᾿ ἄγοντες, ἵνα πρήσσῃσιν ὁδοῖο.”
ὣς ἔφαθ᾿, οἱ δ᾿ ἄρα τοῦ μάλα μὲν κλύον ἠδ᾿ ἐπίθοντο,
καρπαλίμως δ᾿ ἔζευξαν ὑφ᾿ ἅρμασιν ὠκέας ἵππους.
ἐν δὲ γυνὴ ταμίη σῖτον καὶ οἶνον ἔθηκεν
480 ὄψα τε, οἷα ἔδουσι διοτρεφέες βασιλῆες
.
ἂν δ᾿ ἄρα Τηλέμαχος περικαλλέα βήσετο δίφρον·

Its interesting to compare the food given here as being "fit to feed a King" (Wilson) with the "abundant/agreeable food of all kinds" "μενοεικέ' ἐδωδὴν παντοίην" of 6.76-7. Wilson translates μενοεικής as "nutritious" and adds a Greek salad for good measure!

The part which made me smile was 81-4

"ἡ δ᾿ ἔλαβεν μάστιγα καὶ ἡνία σιγαλόεντα,
μάστιξεν δ᾿ ἐλάαν· καναχὴ δ᾿ ἦν ἡμιόνοιιν.
αἱ δ᾿ ἄμοτον τανύοντο, φέρον δ᾿ ἐσθῆτα καὶ αὐτήν,
οὐκ οἴην, ἅμα τῇ γε καὶ ἀμφίπολοι κίον ἄλλαι "

Nausicaa whips the mules while Telemachus whips the horses with "beautiful mane" (καλλίτριχας ἵππους 475) which of course are swift 478 (ὠκέας ἵππους). The mules clattering seems to me to add a note of bathos. I can see others will see a "realistic" touch here.

Priam orders a waggon to be prepared in Il. xxiv.265-80, although he travels in true heroic style in a chariot Il. xxiv.322-3.

Sean has made the point that he doesn't find it funny and that "If this is parody then Homer is no Aristophanes. " I don't much care for the idea of "authorial intentions" in fact I am not sure it makes much sense. I have no idea or interest in whether this is "intended" parody. I am giving my reaction to the text. Homer can't be blamed for my act of reception.

It is interesting how the poem inscribes gender into the smallest details of these scenes. I think we passed over in the previous scene that Nausicaa finds her parents engaged in gender specific activities 52-55:

" ἡ μὲν ἐπ᾿ ἐσχάρῃ ἧστο σὺν ἀμφιπόλοισι γυναιξὶν
ἠλάκατα στρωφῶσ᾿ ἁλιπόρφυρα· τῷ δὲ θύραζε
ἐρχομένῳ ξύμβλητο μετὰ κλειτοὺς βασιλῆας
ἐς βουλήν, ἵνα μιν κάλεον Φαίηκες ἀγαυοί."

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:54 am

I'm hoping this is the week that someone explains to me what on earth I'm supposed to do with Homeric scholia.

I really liked the interplay between ὑπεκπρόρεεν (87) and ὑπεκπροέλυσαν (88) - two Homeric hapaxes in different positions in their verse mirroring each other across these two lines. I thought this would be a good opportunity to see if there were any scholia providing an interpretation of the multiple compounding going on in these verbs, or any more comment on ὑπεκπρορλέει at line 87 in my OCT, and found the following in Dindorf:

Image

https://archive.org/details/scholiagrca ... /page/n383

What am I supposed to do with the initials next to each scholion, and what does it mean when there are multiple initials? Presumably this relates to commentators or codices but I can't find a list in Dindorf (I can't read latin so maybe it's in the introduction) - are multiple scholia being conflated? Apologies if this is extremely obvious, google did not avail me.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seneca2008 » Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:37 am

"seanjonesbw" wrote: This group is only a few weeks old, but the focus so far has been on the Greek and on wider problems of interpretation, so I'd be very keen to get a bit more translation going on.
I think its useful that people contribute translations as a means of trying to understand the Greek but a more efficient approach would be to ask questions about the Greek directly. Actual polished translations surely only come after we have discussed the possible interpretations. Its also a skill in its own right which I have never acquired even though it was required for exams. MWH, whom we all hold in high esteem, has often counselled in favour of reading greek without translating.
Kakakephales wrote:Χαίρετε πάντες!
Thanks for your translation. I have a few comments.

In line 71 why did you translate "δμώεσσιν" (δμώς) as "servants" rather than slaves?

In 80 why "serving women"? Its interesting that Wilson omits "σὺν ἀμφιπόλοισι γυναιξίν" here.

In 84 why "handmaidens"? its the same word as 80 (ἀμφίπολος). Wilson translates "Slaves" here

I mention these lines because its easy to fall into using previous translations without thinking very much about what you actually think the text is saying. Maybe you wanted to ring the changes between 80/84 and that's fine but ask yourself Homer doesn't am I happy to diverge from the text. You can use the terminology of "handmaidens" if you want to inscribe your translation in a tradition but in my view you need to think about it to make sure its a conscious decision.

In 74 Sean observes you omitted "κούρη" ie Nausicaa. Was this is deference to Aristophanes who "was offended that a person of Nausicaa's status should be represented as performing menial tasks" ( Heubeck et al. p. 298)

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:45 am

There are others here who can give you a more detailed explanation, but I'll have a go:
The letters refer to the manuscripts the scholia appear in, categorised by the library they reside in, thus:
B,E = Mediolansis Bibliothecae Ambrosianae (Milan)
H= Harleianus Musei Britannici (British Museum)
P= Heidelbergensis Bibliothecae (olim Palatinae, nunc Academicae)(Heidelberg)
V= Vindobonensis (Vienna)

Unfortunately, Dindorf didn't make a list of the sigla. You have to read through the Preface.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seneca2008 » Tue Jul 02, 2019 12:00 pm

seanjonesbw wrote:I'm hoping this is the week that someone explains to me what on earth I'm supposed to do with Homeric scholia.
I think Wikipedia might be a good starting point: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeric_scholarship it adds a bit of detail to the list given by Aetos.

More generally "Brill's Companion to Ancient Greek Scholarship" might be helpful https://brill.com/view/title/22910?lang=en.

Others are more expert and will help.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 2:02 pm

seneca2008 wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:37 am
I think its useful that people contribute translations as a means of trying to understand the Greek but a more efficient approach would be to ask questions about the Greek directly. Actual polished translations surely only come after we have discussed the possible interpretations. Its also a skill in its own right which I have never acquired even though it was required for exams.
What you say about asking questions being more efficient is definitely true - sometimes a 'wooden' translation reveals questions that the poster didn't even know they had, so I do think they can be worthwhile.

Polished translations, like you say, are a different thing and should be left until you feel you've got to grips with the ambiguity in the Greek. I don't bother translating unless I think it would be interesting to make something new in English, but I do think that making wooden translations can be a good way to 'get into' a writer. If they become a crutch and you never get round to reading the Greek without translating, that's a different problem. I prefer reading alongside a fairly literal translation to do the same thing, but horses for courses.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 2:14 pm

Aetos wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:45 am
There are others here who can give you a more detailed explanation, but I'll have a go:
The letters refer to the manuscripts the scholia appear in, categorised by the library they reside in, thus:
seneca2008 wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 12:00 pm
I think Wikipedia might be a good starting point: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeric_scholarship it adds a bit of detail to the list given by Aetos.
Thanks both. I'm finding it difficult to tie together what I'm reading about manuscripts containing accretions of multiple commentators with Dindorf's sigla. Does "B.E.H.P." mean that the same scholion is attested in all of those manuscripts, potentially from the same original commentator, or merely that the same thought is expressed and Dindorf has rendered the common idea in his own Greek (i.e. is the Greek a quotation from the manuscripts or a summary?).
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:13 pm

Seneca can probably give you a more definite answer, but I'm pretty sure that it works like a critical apparatus, and Dindorf is simply citing the manuscripts where the displayed scholion appears. This of course is important because it lends more authenticity and credibility to the wording of the scholion. I do not believe Dindorf is paraphrasing multiple scholia.
Randy Gibbons once recommended "Scribes & Scholars" by L.D. Reynolds. Chapter 6 gives you a great overview of textual criticism, which could answer some of your questions. I found a copy at my local library. Here's the item on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.com/Scribes-Scholars ... 0199686335

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seneca2008 » Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:30 pm

I am sure Aetos is right. The Greek given in Dindorf is what appears in the manuscript. Don't forget that when the manuscripts were copied so too were the scholia.

I was having a quick look at H in the British library. I am not which of the Harleianus Musei Britannici manuscripys has this particular scholia but you could try looking on line here:

http://searcharchives.bl.uk/primo_libra ... d=IAMS_VU2

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:48 pm

Seneca,
You probably know it already, but if not, you're looking for H5674.
Here's what I found:
http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts/FullDispla ... 74&index=0

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Tue Jul 02, 2019 4:40 pm

Here's the beginning of Book 6 in the Harleian MS:
http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts/Viewer.asp ... 5674_f002r
Here's the page with lines 87-88:
http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts/Viewer.asp ... 5674_f037r
It begins 7 lines from the top. If you look to the right of this line, you will see the scholion.
Last edited by Aetos on Tue Jul 02, 2019 5:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 4:54 pm

Aetos wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:48 pm
Seneca,
You probably know it already, but if not, you're looking for H5674.
Here's what I found:
http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts/FullDispla ... 74&index=0
There it is! On f.37r top right. I thought I was going to need to go on a 6 month course in papyrology for a second there. Like you say, Dindorf is quoting it word for word. Thanks for the help, and to Seneca.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Tue Jul 02, 2019 4:58 pm

Aetos wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:13 pm
Randy Gibbons once recommended "Scribes & Scholars" by L.D. Reynolds. Chapter 6 gives you a great overview of textual criticism, which could answer some of your questions. I found a copy at my local library.
Amazingly, my local library has this too so I'll take a look. I quite like the look of Dickey's Ancient Greek Scholarship as well - I enjoyed her composition book so might take a punt.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by mwh » Tue Jul 02, 2019 6:24 pm

Dindorf’s edition of the Odyssey scholia is notoriously bad. Filippomaria Pontani set about replacing it, and has now reached bk.6 (if not further, I’m not sure). There was a helpful review of vol.1 by Eleanor Dickey in BMCR (and another review in JHS). Her Anc.Gk.Scholarship book is very good.
And there have been a number of discussions of particular Homer scholia on this board (e.g. viewtopic.php?f=22&t=68458&p=198954#p198954 and others with dikaiopolis).

The medievally transmitted scholia, and even more the papyrus commentaries that underlie them, are a window into how the text was approached in antiquity (authorial intention passim, btw), just as the Lexicon of Apollonius Sophista tells us what the individual Homeric words were understood as meaning.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Paul Derouda » Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:52 pm

I happen to have the first three volumes of Pontani's scholiae. My plan was to learn how to study them, but until now I've had little success and even less time for it. Like Sean, I still at a loss as to what on "earth I'm supposed to do Homeric scholia". But unlike him, I also have physical artefacts in my bookshelf to remind me every time I approach the "Homer" section that I have still no answer to the question. Anyway, here is a shot of the relevant pages (I hope I'm not too liberal with copyrights here. Take this as advertisement - the book is quite beautiful, like many things that come from Italy). Anyway, I'm much too tired to try to extract any information out of this, but maybe this is helpful for someone (and maybe someone can help me and Sean).

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Paul Derouda » Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:21 pm

seneca2008 wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:43 am
As I have said before I find this passage amusing and a parody of heroic action.

3.475-481 is a parallel passage describing the departure of Telemachus from Nestor's palace to Sparta.

“παῖδες ἐμοί, ἄγε Τηλεμάχῳ καλλίτριχας ἵππους
ζεύξαθ᾿ ὑφ᾿ ἅρματ᾿ ἄγοντες, ἵνα πρήσσῃσιν ὁδοῖο.”
ὣς ἔφαθ᾿, οἱ δ᾿ ἄρα τοῦ μάλα μὲν κλύον ἠδ᾿ ἐπίθοντο,
καρπαλίμως δ᾿ ἔζευξαν ὑφ᾿ ἅρμασιν ὠκέας ἵππους.
ἐν δὲ γυνὴ ταμίη σῖτον καὶ οἶνον ἔθηκεν
480 ὄψα τε, οἷα ἔδουσι διοτρεφέες βασιλῆες
.
ἂν δ᾿ ἄρα Τηλέμαχος περικαλλέα βήσετο δίφρον·
I think I understand now what you mean, and I agree to a point, if by parody you don't necessarily mean something that's supposed to make one laugh. The medium in which these poems were composed – the traditional hexameter epic – dictates that certain traditional, inherited formulas and type-scenes are bound to be used, and when the poet was faced with untypical subject matter (e.g. girls doing the laundry instead of heroes fighting), he had to adapt traditional material to a new kind situation. This doesn't mean that was slave to his medium; I think we can say we confidence that he was in full control, and here I think you are right to see if not an outright parody of, at least an eye wink to heroic action. I think you're right it's supposed to be amusing, but it's also supposed to be charming at the same time. But soon enough I think we will encounter a couple of double entendres in the Nausicaa story that were really supposed to make the male audience laugh.

A fine example of an outright parody of a traditional type scene, I think, is when Odysseus' companions butcher the cattle of the Sun - they don't have barley, so they replace it with leaves, and they replace libations of wine with libations of water. No wonder they were soon going to die miserably! (book 12 line 352 ff.)

ὣς ἔφατ᾽ Εὐρύλοχος, ἐπὶ δ᾽ ᾔνεον ἄλλοι ἑταῖροι.
αὐτίκα δ᾽ Ἠελίοιο βοῶν ἐλάσαντες ἀρίστας
ἐγγύθεν, οὐ γὰρ τῆλε νεὸς κυανοπρῴροιο
βοσκέσκονθ᾽ ἕλικες καλαὶ βόες εὐρυμέτωποι:
τὰς δὲ περίστησάν τε καὶ εὐχετόωντο θεοῖσιν,
φύλλα δρεψάμενοι τέρενα δρυὸς ὑψικόμοιο:
οὐ γὰρ ἔχον κρῖ λευκὸν ἐυσσέλμου ἐπὶ νηός.
αὐτὰρ ἐπεί ῥ᾽ εὔξαντο καὶ ἔσφαξαν καὶ ἔδειραν,
μηρούς τ᾽ ἐξέταμον κατά τε κνίσῃ ἐκάλυψαν
δίπτυχα ποιήσαντες, ἐπ᾽ αὐτῶν δ᾽ ὠμοθέτησαν.
οὐδ᾽ εἶχον μέθυ λεῖψαι ἐπ᾽ αἰθομένοις ἱεροῖσιν,
ἀλλ᾽ ὕδατι σπένδοντες ἐπώπτων ἔγκατα πάντα.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by jeidsath » Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:28 pm

You may find Pontani's Thoughts on Editing Greek Scholia interesting.
Joel Eidsath -- jeidsath@gmail.com

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Tue Jul 02, 2019 9:42 pm

Here's a more colourful version of the beginning of Book 6:
https://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/digli ... 0102/image
This is manuscript P in Dindorf.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by mwh » Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:26 pm

Note the marginal notations in Pontani's edition, which are analytical, identifying (where possible) each scholium’s ultimate source.
Ariston(icus), Hdn. (Herodian), Nican(or): three of the four ancient scholars who wrote works elucidating Aristarchus’ (3rd cent. BCE) textual choices etc. (The fourth being Didymus. These four collectively constitute the so-called Viermännerkommentar or VMK, though they were separate works before being amalgamated and excerpted, and can quite easily be sorted out again.)
ex.: the exegetical scholia, a distinct tradition, apologetic in nature, “explaining” the Homeric text, often by proffering “solutions” to recognized “problems,” a long-standing tradition represented in Aristotle’s Poetics and earlier. (They correspond to the Iliadic bT scholia, and often tacitly rebut Aristarchus’ textual criticism.)
V for vulgate, aka the D-scholia: low-level scholia much used in the ancient education system, mainly giving the meaning of Homeric words by translating them into their everyday equivalents.

The first of the two lower registers, keyed to the verse numbers, presents comparable entries in other texts and suchlike. The second, keyed to the line numbers in the editor’s printed text, is a fairly standard app.crit., reporting minor variation among the med.mss. etc. The upper-case letters, B etc., at the end of each entry and in this apparatus, designate individual manuscripts, as in Dindorf only much more reliably and much better chosen.

What you’re supposed to do with them, if anything, is of course up to you. I find them fascinating, up to a point.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Aetos » Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:48 pm

The first of the two lower registers, keyed to the verse numbers, presents comparable entries in other texts and suchlike.
This register, then would be the "apparatus comparandorum"?

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Kakakephales » Wed Jul 03, 2019 1:58 am

Thanks very much Sean and Seneca for your comments on my translation.

I hadn't considered how the the way I was taught to translate certain words (ancilla as handmaiden, servus as servant, to use Latin examples) glosses over the real status of the people in the text before, so that's a new perspective for me.
seanjonesbw wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 4:58 pm
Aetos wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:13 pm
Randy Gibbons once recommended "Scribes & Scholars" by L.D. Reynolds. Chapter 6 gives you a great overview of textual criticism, which could answer some of your questions. I found a copy at my local library.
Amazingly, my local library has this too so I'll take a look. I quite like the look of Dickey's Ancient Greek Scholarship as well - I enjoyed her composition book so might take a punt.
I'd add an enthusiastic endorsement for both. Scribes and Scholars is one of those books like Simon Goldhill's Who Needs Greek that really changed how I saw classical texts. Dickey's book is good too, like everything I've read by her, but it made less of an impression on me than Scribes - maybe because I read the one before the other.
mwh wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:26 pm
These four collectively constitute the so-called Viermännerkommentar or VMK, though they were separate works before being amalgamated and excerpted, and can quite easily be sorted out again.
Ever creative in naming things, the old German scholars were. :lol:

This week I just read the text out of the Steadmann pdf linked, but that feels a bit like cheating. Does anyone here have van Thiel's Odyssey? It would be nice to have a one volume copy.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by mwh » Wed Jul 03, 2019 2:39 am

Aetos wrote:
This register, then would be the "apparatus comparandorum"
Yes I guess you could call it that (or Conferenda, cf. “cf.”!). He also signals relationships (e.g. “hinc”) and contrasting interpretations (“aliter”—which means “differently,” Sean; you won’t get far with scholia without Latin—and German).

You see there’s a note on the triple prepositional prefix in 87 (ὑπεκπρόρεεν), and another on the same in 88 (ὑπεκπροέλυσαν), but these scholia make no connexion between the two words; their prefixes are treated in mutual isolation. But the less jejune ancient commentators had the entire text of the Homeric poems at their fingertips (or in their heads, rather) and often compare one passage with another.

On the "handmaiden" vs. "slave" question, on which there's been previous discussion here, I'll simply note again that Greek has a word for "slave," and Homer doesn't use it.
(Conversely, anyone who translates servus as servant rather than slave deserves to be shot.)

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:59 am

As so often happens on textkit, I've woken up with a reading list as long as my right arm and two new languages to learn.

Thank you everyone for piecing together a description of the scholia - I'm going to summarise below what I've taken away from all of this to let people point out anything I'm still not getting.
  • To start with the obvious - scholia are marginal notes in medieval manuscripts of Homer (and obviously other writing, but I'll stick with Homer here for clarity).
  • These are copies of earlier manuscripts, which at some unknown point collated separate ancient commentaries on Homer by the Viermännerkommentar, now lost except in the scholia.
  • These commentaries were themselves responses to Aristarchus' decisions in producing an edition/editions of Homer. These scholia are largely (purely?) responses to textual decisions rather than exegetical.
  • There is also a separate tradition of exegetical scholia (of unknown authorship?) and 'low-quality' D-scholia surviving in these manuscripts alongside the Viermännerkommentar.
  • Some scholia are common to several manuscripts, while others are only present in one manuscript.
Modern editors, such as Dindorf, Erbse and Pontani, publish collations of what they deem to be the most 'important' scholia from across these manuscripts. Dindorf is verboten because his scholia were very incomplete and he didn't systematically identify the authorship of scholia.

Scholia are useful insofar as they provide an insight into the methodology of ancient textual criticism, ancient exegesis of the text and, to some extent, the use of Homer in education.

I suppose my remaining questions are:
  • How certain is the attribution to ancient commentators - is this traditional (with a possibility of a later pseudo-X) or can we be fairly certain? I notice Herodian is the only one with any surviving work outside of the scholia to compare with.
  • Is it pretty obvious which scholia belong to which source once you know what you're doing?
  • How useful are scholia for an editor producing an edition of Homer?
  • Is there any point interacting with scholia directly (i.e. outside of those quoted in modern commentaries) for a reader (or translator) of Homer? Or are they mostly of interest in their own right as historical documents (like some biblical exegesis)?
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:02 am

Paul Derouda wrote:
Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:52 pm
I happen to have the first three volumes of Pontani's scholiae.
Paul, your bookshelf is a wonder of the modern world! This was very helpful.
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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seneca2008 » Wed Jul 03, 2019 4:07 pm

Kakakephales wrote:I hadn't considered how the the way I was taught to translate certain words (ancilla as handmaiden, servus as servant, to use Latin examples) glosses over the real status of the people in the text before, so that's a new perspective for me.
This the most rewarding piece of feedback I have received here for a while. It is not so important what you actually decide is your translation of these terms, but that you have thought about it. The various terms used by Homer for those who "serve" indicate to me that there is some distinction between them and the Heroic elite and their elite women. We all draw our lines in different places.
mwh wrote:On the "handmaiden" vs. "slave" question, on which there's been previous discussion here, I'll simply note again that Greek has a word for "slave," and Homer doesn't use it.
We have as you say ventilated this in another thread so no need to repeat that discussion here. I assume its δοῦλος that isn't used, although δούλη is. I don't find this persuasive one way or the other in deciding the status of these ancillary figures who serve. But it is an interesting point.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by mwh » Wed Jul 03, 2019 4:56 pm

Their status is one thing. How Homer represents them is quite another. My point is that he does not call them slaves (so a translator who does is misrepresenting Homer).

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seneca2008 » Wed Jul 03, 2019 5:40 pm

mwh

I respect your opinion but I disagree. I don't think its as clear cut as you present it. In the present passage we have "δμώς" which is generally translated as a slave.

As there is no evidence in the text (I stand ready to be corrected) that what some call "slaves" were in fact "free people" I am not sure this is resolvable. Slaves and Handmaidens can coexist as part of the reception of the text.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by Paul Derouda » Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:09 pm

seneca2008 wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 5:40 pm
mwh

I respect your opinion but I disagree. I don't think its as clear cut as you present it. In the present passage we have "δμώς" which is generally translated as a slave.

As there is no evidence in the text (I stand ready to be corrected) that what some call "slaves" were in fact "free people" I am not sure this is resolvable. Slaves and Handmaidens can coexist as part of the reception of the text.
I think I have an idea why δμώεσσιν is used on 71, but a word ἀμφίπολος that doesn't explicitly mean "slave" is used about the servant girls. It's not clear cut you say, but maybe you also could offer us a guess please?

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by mwh » Thu Jul 04, 2019 5:04 pm

δμῶες and ἀμφίπολοι are quite different kettles of fish (quite apart from the gender difference), and to translate both of them as “slaves” would be badly distortive.
— But (please!) enough of that.
seanjonesbw wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:59 am
I suppose my remaining questions are:
  • How certain is the attribution to ancient commentators - is this traditional (with a possibility of a later pseudo-X) or can we be fairly certain? I notice Herodian is the only one with any surviving work outside of the scholia to compare with.
  • Is it pretty obvious which scholia belong to which source once you know what you're doing?
  • How useful are scholia for an editor producing an edition of Homer?
  • Is there any point interacting with scholia directly (i.e. outside of those quoted in modern commentaries) for a reader (or translator) of Homer? Or are they mostly of interest in their own right as historical documents (like some biblical exegesis)?
Sean, I could amend your take-aways (not copied here) but I’ll briefly tackle your questions instead.
We have the titles of each of the VMK works (Venetus A reports them) and can be virtually certain of our attributions to them.
With the more substantial scholia there’s not often much doubt about the source or sources, but many scholia incorporate other material and so much is cut down or cut out that it can sometimes be a bit of a muddle.
How useful to an editor of Homer? Not very (though I hate to say so). West makes good (very selective) use of them. van Thiel doesn’t. Allen (OCT) adopted many—too many—of the Alexandrians’ readings, which some have thought were “mere” conjectures rather than inherited readings and as such worthless (but that's simplistic).
Direct interaction with scholia is not just historically illuminating (and kinda interesting) but offers perspectives beyond those of modern commentaries. For a translator of Homer they're useless.
Bottom line: If you have no interest in the reception of the Homeric epics for the first two thousand years you can ignore the scholia. Otherwise, not.

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Re: Odyssey Reading Group: Book 6 Lines 71-92

Post by seanjonesbw » Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:44 pm

mwh wrote:
Thu Jul 04, 2019 5:04 pm
Sean, I could amend your take-aways (not copied here) but I’ll briefly tackle your questions instead.
Thank you, this is extremely helpful. That you don't find my ignorance a pain in the arse is a great credit to you.
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