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[174b] for going unasked to dinner?”

“For anything,” he said he replied, “that you may bid me do.”

“Come along then,” he said; “let us corrupt the proverb with a new version:

What if they go of their own accord,

The good men to our Goodman's1 board?

Though indeed Homer2 may be said to have not merely corrupted the adage, but debauched it: for after setting forth Agamemnon as a man eminently good at warfare,


1 The name Agathon resembles the Greek for “good men's” in the proverb, which seems to have been: αὐτόματοι δ᾽ ἀγαθοὶ ἀγαθῶν ἐπὶ δαῖτας ἴασι (Athen. i. 8A; Bacchyl. fr. 33). The “corruption” consists in putting the dative Ἀγάθωνι for ἀγαθῶν; though perhaps the reference is to another form of the proverb which had δειλῶν (cravens') instead of ἀγαθῶν.

2 Hom. Il. 17.587 Μενέλαον ὑπετρέσας, τὸ πάρος γε μαλθακὸς αἰχμητής, and Hom. Il. 2.408 αὐτόματος δέ οἱ ἦλθε βοὴν ἀγαθὸς Μενέλαος.

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hide References (14 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (4):
    • Walter Leaf, Commentary on the Iliad (1900), 17.588
    • R. G. Bury, The Symposium of Plato, 174B
    • R. G. Bury, The Symposium of Plato, 223D
    • James Adam, The Republic of Plato, 2.368A
  • Cross-references to this page (2):
    • Raphael Kühner, Bernhard Gerth, Ausführliche Grammatik der griechischen Sprache, KG 1.pos=2.2
    • Basil L. Gildersleeve, Syntax of Classical Greek, Tenses
  • Cross-references in notes from this page (2):
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (6):
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