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
Hi! Welcome to textkit, and to this reading group. Folk here are very helpful if you have any questions.
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.Kakakephales wrote: ↑Sun Jun 30, 2019 9:27 pm
As a literal translation, there's not much to object to.
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].
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."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.
Thanks for your translation. I have a few comments.Kakakephales wrote:Χαίρετε πάντες!
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.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.
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.seneca2008 wrote: ↑Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:37 amI 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.
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?).
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.Aetos wrote: ↑Tue Jul 02, 2019 3:48 pmSeneca,
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
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 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.seneca2008 wrote: ↑Tue Jul 02, 2019 10:43 amAs 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'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.seanjonesbw wrote: ↑Tue Jul 02, 2019 4:58 pmAmazingly, 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.
Ever creative in naming things, the old German scholars were.
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).This register, then would be the "apparatus comparandorum"
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.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.
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.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.
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?seneca2008 wrote: ↑Wed Jul 03, 2019 5:40 pmmwh
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.
Sean, I could amend your take-aways (not copied here) but I’ll briefly tackle your questions instead.seanjonesbw wrote: ↑Wed Jul 03, 2019 9:59 amI 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)?
Thank you, this is extremely helpful. That you don't find my ignorance a pain in the arse is a great credit to you.