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[967] κτενεῖν κτανεῖν, which the MSS. give, cannot be pronounced positively wrong; but it can hardly be doubted that Soph. here wrote κτενεῖν. If κτανεῖν is right, it is the only aor. infin. after μέλλω in Soph., who has the fut. infin. 9 times (Soph. El. 359, 379, 538: Soph. Aj. 925, 1027, 1287: Soph. Ant. 458: Soph. Phil. 483, 1084): and the pres. infin. 9 times (Soph. El. 305, 1486: Soph. Aj. 443: Soph. OT 678, 1385: Soph. OC 1773: Soph. Trach. 79, 756: Soph. Phil. 409). Aeschylus certainly has the aor. in Aesch. PB 625μήτοι με κρύψῃς τοῦθ᾽ ὅπερ μέλλω παθεῖν.” Excluding the Laconic ἰδῆν in Aristoph. Lys. 117, there are but two instances in Comedy, Aristoph. Birds 366τί μέλλετ᾽ἀπολέσαι,” and Aristoph. Ach. 1159μέλλοντος λαβεῖν.” Cp. W. G. Rutherford, New Phrynichus pp. 420-425, and Goodwin, Greek Moods and Tenses sect. 23.2. The concurrence of tribrachs in the 4th and 5th places gives a semi-lyric character which suits the speaker's agitation.

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