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Mutilation, along with all forms of maltreatment of the dead, was widely condemned by Greek authors of the Classical period. In a culture where the obligation to bury and respect the dead was seen as one of the strongest moral compulsions universal to all men, mistreating the dead was considered to be the most outrageous and unholy of actions, more suitable, as Herodotus states, for barbarians than for Greeks, ‘and even in them we find it loathsome’. The importance of the theme of mutilating the dead in the Iliad, where one can find numerous and surprisingly detailed descriptions of warriors maltreating the corpses of their enemies, is therefore puzzling, to say the least.
Yet, the Greeks do wage war, I hear, and they do so senselessly, in their poor judgement and stupidity. When they have declared war against each other, they find the finest, flattest piece of land and go down there and fight, so that the victors come off with terrible loss—I will not even begin to speak of the defeated, for they are utterly destroyed.
This passage has long been one of the pillars of the ‘orthodox’ view of Greek warfare. It appears to describe a very peculiar way of war, in which conflicts were resolved by single battles at prearranged times, fought on open ground where neither side had an advantage. Fairness counted for more than tactical skill; all conditions were made equal, so that the winners could truly claim to be the braver and stronger men. The result, as Mardonius stressed, was needlessly bloody—but it was quintessentially Greek. Modern authors have argued that this ‘agonistic’ style of fighting, this ‘wonderful, absurd conspiracy’ of open hoplite battle, determined the shape of Greek warfare until the long and hard-fought Peloponnesian War changed the rules.
Pindar's Celedones have raised much controversy over the years. Their identity still remains uncertain, although there have been many attempts from scholars to specify whether the term refers to mythical creatures comparable to the Sirens of Homer or to elaborate life-like statues adorning the gable of a long-lost Delphic temple. In this paper, I wish to argue for a metaphorical reading of the Celedones in Pindar's Paean 8 that resides in the poetic (re-)signification of proper names and how they are put into narrative(s). Drawing intratextual evidence from Olympian 1 and intertextual evidence from early Greek epic, I contend that the Celedones, richly semanticized as they are, become the means by which Pindar deals with the rigours of the song-making process, as he strives to introduce an ambivalent take on the choral praise of Apollo at Delphi, one that rests on the paradox of song exquisiteness and its negative consequences.
Er ist der Wanderer, der genau weiß, wohin er schließlich kommen will, auch genau die Hauptstationen seines Weges vorher festgelegt hat und innehält, der sich aber dabei Zeit läßt, um alles Schöne und Interessante, das die Gegend bietet, zu betrachten, und selbst lange Seitenwege zu diesem Zwecke nicht zu scheuen braucht, da er weiß, daß er die Hauptstraße am richtigen Punkte wieder erreichen wird.
M. Pohlenz, Herodot, der erste Geschichtschreiber des Abendlandes (1937)
Anyone familiar with Greek literature knows at once that this can describe no author but Herodotus. As readers have long recognized, travel is a crucial element of Herodotus’ persona not only as an historian and ethnographer but also as a narrator, to the extent that he has been called a tourist and a guide. Pohlenz draws his vivid metaphor from Herodotus himself, who assimilates movement through his narrative to movement through space by several well-known narratorial habits: he points out ‘paths’ of logoi (1.95.1: λόγων ὁδούς), goes out of his way to justify so-called ‘digressions’ (or Exkurse) and frequently uses verbs of movement to return to earlier narratives or to preview upcoming ones. However, most scholars have overlooked one important feature by which Herodotus creates this sense of progress through his logoi, although it appears in the programmatic sentence that begins his whole network of narrative signposts and recurs in his voice in the first half of the Histories and in important speeches in the second.
In his biography of Polemon, head of the Academy from 313 to 269, Diogenes Laertius comments on Polemon's fondness for Sophocles after detailing Polemon's relationship with his predecessor, Xenocrates (4.19–20):
It would seem that Polemon imitated Xenocrates in all respects. In the fourth book of On the Luxury of the Ancients, Aristippos says that he loved him. Certainly Polemon kept him in mind and, like him, wore that simple, dry dignity that is proper of the Dorian mode. He also loved Sophocles, particularly in those passages where it seemed as if, in the words of the comic poet, ‘a Molossian dog co-authored’ plays with him and where the poet was, in the words of Phrynichus, ‘neither bland nor doctored but Pramnian’. Thus he would call Homer the epic Sophocles and Sophocles the tragic Homer.
The main source of Diogenes Laertius' Life of Polemon is Antigonus of Carystus, who was active in Athens and (apparently) Pergamon around the mid third century. In addition to being generally considered a reliable author, Antigonus is also chronologically close to Polemon's lifetime. He is also the source of Philodemus' History of Philosophers, a work preserved by two important papyri from Herculaneum. Philodemus, too, mentions Polemon's admiration for Sophocles, although he gives a shorter version than Diogenes Laertius: λέγεται δὲ καὶ φιλοσοφοκλῆς γενέσθαι καὶ μά || λιστα τὸ ΠΑ[.]Α[……….] | τῆς φωνῆς καὶ παρα[….] ἀποδέχεσθαι. In Dorandi's translation, Philodemus records that ‘si dice che [Polemone] fu ammiratore di Sofocle e soprattutto ne apprezzò l'audacia (del suono della lingua) e ciò che suonava duro’.
Apart from his teachings, wonders and scientific discoveries, Pythagoras was also known for his wide-ranging journeys. Ancient authors alleged that he visited many countries and nations from Egypt to India, stayed with the Phoenicians and the Ethiopians and talked to the Persian Magi and Gallic Druids. However, he never went to the North. If, nevertheless, he was eventually associated with the northern inhabitants, it is only because they themselves came into close contact with him. The first of them was Zalmoxis, a deity of a Thracian tribe, the Getae, who guaranteed them immortality after death (Hdt. 4.94). Having described a blood ritual that the Getae practised to become immortal, Herodotus relates a story he heard from the Hellespontine and Pontic Greeks. It goes that Zalmoxis was not a daimōn but a former slave of Pythagoras on Samos and, having adopted the doctrine of immortality from him, he returned to Thrace and converted his tribesmen to it with a cunning trick. He invited the most prominent of them to a men's hall (ἀνδρείων) for entertainment and told them that neither he nor they or their descendants would die, but would live eternally. Then, having constructed a secret underground chamber, he suddenly disappeared from the eyes of the Getae and hid in his shelter for three full years, being lamented as dead. Then he showed himself again to the Getae, thus persuading them of the truth of his promises (4.95).
Ecclesiazusae, the first surviving work of Aristophanes from the fourth century b.c.e., has often been dismissed as an example of Aristophanes’ declining powers and categorized as being less directly rooted in politics than its fifth-century predecessors owing to the after-effects of Athens’ defeat in the Peloponnesian War. Arguing against this perception, which was largely based on the absence of ad hominem attacks characterizing Aristophanes’ earlier works, this paper explores how Ecclesiazusae engages with contemporary post-war Athenian politics in a manner which, while different to his earlier comedies, remained closely rooted in the political and cultural concerns of the 390s. By examining the figure of Praxagora, I will first consider recent suggestions that Ecclesiazusae hints at the possibility of an anti-democratic coup. I will then examine how contemporary discussions of constitutional and legal reforms (including the invocation of ‘founding fathers’ such as Solon and Lycurgus) are incorporated into both Praxagora's language and the scenes featuring the Selfish Man and Hags that follow the establishment of Praxagora's regime. Examining these final scenes, I conclude that Ecclesiasuzae does not suggest that the idea of democratic equality itself is fundamentally flawed, but instead argues that Athens needs a suitable leader, well suited to the rough and tumble of assembly rhetoric, in order to successfully function. In the world of Ecclesiazusae, the men of Athens have failed too often to inspire any hope, putting their own interest above the state, and the new leader must be someone different. Thus Aristophanes sets up Praxagora as a female Solon to remake the state and lead the democracy. The second half of the play demonstrates this need for a strong leader, as problems arise both from the quarter of critical bystanders (the Selfish Man and Epigenes, the Young Man in the ‘hag scene’) and from over-zealous enforcers (the Old Women).
Alone among surviving Athenian homicide orations, Antiphon's On the Murder of Herodes resembles a modern murder mystery. Antiphon's client, a Mytilenean named Euxitheus, tells a story of a stormy night, an isolated harbour, a drunken murder victim, a missing corpse, misleading bloodstains, forged documents and hints of political intrigue. And, like in any good whodunnit, Euxitheus insists that no one knows who the killer is. Although all the clues seem to point to him, he maintains that Herodes' relatives have manipulated the evidence to make him seem guilty. We do not know whether Euxitheus succeeded in convincing his jurors, but the author of the Life of Antiphon attributed to Plutarch, who says that Antiphon was ‘adept in situations with no way out’ (ἐν τοῖς ἀπόροις τεχνικός), considers On the Murder of Herodes one of Antiphon's finest compositions (832E, 833D).
Ἀσέβεια is one of Greek religion's vexatious topics. It was a crime, or γραφή, as well as a religious wrong according to ‘sacred law’. It happened to be the charge in the most famous Greek trial, that of Socrates, and thus became part of a locus classicus, with the result, as Kenneth Dover showed, that later reports of ἀσέβεια trials were often distorted by the influence of Socrates' example. Focussing mostly on the sources found reliable by Dover, this article proposes that ἀσέβεια sometimes resembled μίασμα, which was contagious religious pollution. An impious person could sometimes spread his or her ἀσέβεια, and others could catch it.
In Nicomachean Ethics (= Eth. Nic.) 10.2, Aristotle addresses Eudoxus' argument that pleasure is the chief good in his characteristically dialectical manner. The argument is that pleasure is the chief good, since all creatures, rational (ἔλλογα) and non-rational (ἄλογα) alike, are perceived to aim at pleasure (1172b9–11). At 1172b35–1173a5, Aristotle turns to an objection against Eudoxus' argument. For some object (οἱ δ’ἐνιστάμενοι) to the argument by questioning one of its premisses, namely that what all creatures aim at is the good (1172b12–15). Instead, they claim that what all creatures aim at is not good (ὡς οὐκ ἀγαθὸν οὗ πάντ’ ἐφίεται, 1172b36). This claim is reasonably taken to mean that not everything that all creatures aim at is good. But, as we shall shortly see, Aristotle dismisses it in a way suggesting a less charitable interpretation. At any rate, the significance of this objection is that it challenges the strong claim that what all creatures aim at is the good with an argument against the weaker claim that what all creatures aim at is good (or a good). For if the weaker claim is refuted, then the strong claim is refuted as well. Aristotle takes issue with the argument against the weaker claim, but without committing himself to the strong claim.
102-3 θηρότροφον praeeunte Musgrave (-τρόφον) Allen : -τρόφοι ‹L›P
The subject of ἔτεκεν (99) and ϲτεφάνωϲεν (101) is Zeus (95). If the text is right, Zeus gave birth to Dionysus, and Zeus then crowned him with snakes. This note argues that the text is corrupt because (i) vase painting shows Dionysus born already crowned, and (ii) the notion that Zeus should crown anyone is quite exceptional. I conclude that in 101 Euripides probably wrote ϲτεφανωθέντα, not ϲτεφάνωϲέν τε.
Since the beginning of modern investigations on ancient rhythmics, scholars have faced significant problems in interpreting the technical terminology employed by ancient rhythmicians, especially in relation to two of the most basic terms attested in the sources: ἄρσις and θέσις, which indicate the two fundamental components of a rhythmical foot.
In the Rhesus, Hector is convinced that he has the right solution for every problem. He is also eager to impose his views on his peers, like Aeneas, and above all on his subjects or on foreigners, like the watchmen of the chorus and Dolon, or on Rhesus. At the same time, he is ready to change his mind in the course of a debate, and occasionally makes decisions that are in tune with the views of his interlocutors but radically different from his original opinions. One of the cases where he most persistently tries to impose his viewpoint but evidently fails, and must eventually accept the viewpoint of a subordinate, is the guessing game of Rhes. 165–83. The scene's format emphasizes his unsuccessfulness, and may even have been tinged with a comic or farcical effect—in fact, the format of the guessing game is found only here in tragedy, while it is not uncommon in Aristophanes and also reappears, with what seems to be a precise allusion to our Rhesus passage, in Menander's Perikeiromene.
In the late spring of 400 b.c.e., when the Ten Thousand were encamped outside the city of Cotyora, Xenophon addressed the soldiers gathered in assembly in order to defend himself against accusations that he was planning to lead them on a colonizing expedition to the land of the Phasis river. Having demonstrated that he was not misleading the soldiers (that is, that his true intentions were not to lead them to the Phasis) by proving that he could not hope to deceive them into travelling east, Xenophon then moved on to what he presented as a more serious matter for the assembled mercenaries: the problem of growing indiscipline in the army, and its consequences (both potential and actual). Xenophon illustrated the extent of the problem by describing to the men two incidents in detail.
This paper is about several little-known Latin funerary formulae of some interest. It is also intended as an addition to the growing literature on what are now called in English ‘support verbs’, with special focus on facio.
In his magisterial work Persephone, Zuntz drew a basic distinction between two sets of Orphic gold leaves—those known from the elaborate tumuli at Thurii, which he called Group A, and a more widely scattered series, Group B, then represented by two longer texts from Petelia in southern Italy and Pharsalus in Thessaly, and, in a shortened form, by a series of six (now seven) short texts from the environs of Eleutherna in Crete (his Group C). Three further finds have reinforced Zuntz's distinctions: first, a tablet from Hipponium, the colony of Epizephyrian Locri in southern Italy, published by Foti and Pugliese Carratelli, then a lamella said to be from Thessaly but now in Malibu and published by Breslin, and finally a tablet said to be from Entella in Sicily and recently in Geneva, which was published in a bad transcription by Frel and much clarified by Riedweg. The first and third belong to Zuntz's Group B, while the second is close to his Group C. Pugliese Carratelli has published an exceptionally fine set of photographs of all the texts except those from Petelia and Entella. My restudy of the leaf from Petelia has led to some improved readings. Not even a drawing exists of the Entellan leaf, which no scholar except its first editor has ever seen. This fact prompted a reviewer of this article to wonder about its authenticity. In the absence of the object itself, such doubts can only be allayed if its text consistently contributes to improving our understanding of the archetype from which it is derived. One of the aims of this article is to show that it does indeed do so.
On or shortly after 4 February 43 b.c. Cicero delivered the Ninth Philippic in an effort to persuade the Senate to honour Ser. Sulpicius Rufus (cos. 51). He argued that Sulpicius, who had died of natural causes while acting as the Senate's envoy, was nevertheless entitled to the same recognition as legati killed ob rem publicam. In the course of the speech Cicero discussed various historic precedents, including Cn. Octavius (cos. 165) who was assassinated in Syria in 162 b.c. while doing the Senate's bidding and was consequently honoured with a statue on the rostra. The statue was still extant in 43 b.c. and Cicero reminded his audience that it was now the only memorial to this great family. Cicero's observation has unanimously been interpreted as signifying that the family of the consul of 165 b.c. was extinct in February 43 b.c. In fact, Cicero actually meant that the statue on the rostra was now the sole surviving monument associated with the family of Cn. Octavius because the other two monuments that had served as a concrete reminder of the family had latterly been destroyed.
Aristodemus, a Phigalian by birth, was tyrant of Megalopolis for around fifteen years in the first half of the third century b.c., possibly from the time of the Chremonidean War (267–262) until around 251, when he was murdered by two Megalopolitan exiled citizens, Megalophanes and Ecdelus, pupils of the Academic Arcesilaus. While giving an account of his violent death, Pausanias, none the less, draws a very positive portrait of him, also mentioning the nickname ‘the Good’ which he probably read on Aristodemus' grave. Pausanias also reports the foundation of two temples by the tyrant, both dedicated to Artemis. At 8.35.5 he locates one of the two temples at thirteen stades from Megalopolis on the road to Methydrion, so to the north. There, he says, is a place named Scias, where there are ruins of a sanctuary of Artemis Sciaditis. At 8.32.4, Pausanias briefly refers to the temple of Artemis Agrotera at Megalopolis. He says only that the sanctuary was on a hill in the south-east district of the polis, and adds that it was dedicated as an ἀνάθημα by the tyrant as well.
The Bellum Hispaniense (= BHisp.), often considered alongside the two other pseudo-Caesarian commentarii, the Bellum Alexandrinum and the Bellum Africum, contains the account of Caesar's final battles with Pompey's forces in Spain during 46 and 45 b.c. In terms of its language and style, the BHisp. is certainly the most un-Caesarian of the pseudo-Caesarian Bella. The work abounds in phenomena belonging to different linguistic varieties, and is an important piece of evidence in the process of the standardization of written Latin.