ὅς ῥά μιν εὖ ἕρξαντα κακῷ ἠνίπαπε μύθῳ (Iliad 5.650)

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bcrowell
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ὅς ῥά μιν εὖ ἕρξαντα κακῷ ἠνίπαπε μύθῳ (Iliad 5.650)

Post by bcrowell »

Iliad 5.650:

ὅς ῥά μιν εὖ ἕρξαντα κακῷ ἠνίπαπε μύθῳ

Evidently the meaning of εὖ ἕρξαντα here is something like "to whom he *should* have done good." (At least that's the sense that Buckley indicates, in similar words.) Is there anything here that should be telling me that it's a "should?" Normally when I see optatives or particles like εἰ , κεν, and ἂν, that's what triggers me to think that it's probably some kind of "coulda, shoulda, woulda." I guess participles don't have mood or are a mood unto themselves; does that just mean that the semantics of a participle can always encompass moods other than indicative, and you have to guess based on other cues (what cues here)?

Or is the meaning of εὖ ἕρξαντα something more like "him who had done good?" (This would not correspond literally to Buckley, who is normally doing a literal translation.)
Ben Crowell, Fullerton, California
an innovative, free, and open-source presentation of Homer: https://bcrowell.github.io/ransom/

mwh
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Re: ὅς ῥά μιν εὖ ἕρξαντα κακῷ ἠνίπαπε μύθῳ (Iliad 5.650)

Post by mwh »

Or is the meaning of εὖ ἕρξαντα something more like "him who had done good?"
Yes, that's it. There’s no suggestion of "should" about the participle or anything else. It's all factual (so to speak), and if the participle had a mood it would be indicative. Heracles had done Laomedon good (ευ ερξαντα), but Laomedon reneged on his promise to give him the mares as reward, as Sarpedon goes on to point out.

(The good that Heracles had done was in rescuing Laomedon's daughter from a sea monster. It would be nice to know if Homer knew that.)

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bcrowell
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Re: ὅς ῥά μιν εὖ ἕρξαντα κακῷ ἠνίπαπε μύθῳ (Iliad 5.650)

Post by bcrowell »

Thanks, mwh, much appreciated. That makes sense.

Buckley has this: "who reproved with harsh language him who had deserved well."
Ben Crowell, Fullerton, California
an innovative, free, and open-source presentation of Homer: https://bcrowell.github.io/ransom/

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