previous next

[640] δυοῖν ... ἀποκρίνας κακοῖν The traditional reading, δρᾶσαι ... δυοῖν, is the only extant example of δυοῖν scanned as one syllable, though in the tragic poets alone the word occurs more than 50 times. Synizesis of υ is rare in extant Greek poetry: Pind. P. 4.225γενύ¯ων”: Anthol. 11.413 (epigram by Ammianus, 1st century A.D.) ὤκιμον, ἡδύ¯οσμον, πήγανον, ἀσπάραγος. Eur. IT 970ὅσαι δ᾽ Ἐρινύ¯ων οὐκ ἐπείσθησαν νόμῳ,” and Eur. IT 1456οἴστροις Ἐρινύ¯ων,” where most editors write Ἐρινῦν, as Eur. IT 299Ἐρινῦς” (acc. plur.). Hes. Sh. 3Ἠλεκτρύ¯ωνος.” It might be rash to say that Soph. could not have used δυοῖν as a monosyllable; for he has used the ordinary synizesis in a peculiarly bold way, Soph. Aj. 1129μή νυν ἀτίμα θεοὺς θεοῖς σεσωμένος”: but at least it moves the strongest suspicion. ἀποκρίνας, on the other hand, seems genuine. ἀποκρίνειν is properly secernere to set apart: e.g. γῆνPlat. Rep. 303d): or to select: Plat. Laws 946aπλήθει τῶν ψήφων ἀποκρίναντας,” having selected (the men) according to the number of votes for each. Here, “having set apart (for me) one of two ills” is a phrase suitable to the arbitrary rigour of doom which left a choice only between death and exile. For δυοῖν Elms. proposed τοῖνδ᾽ or τοῖνδέ γ᾽: Herm., τοῖνδ᾽ ἕν: A. Spengel, δείν᾽. I should rather believe that δρᾶν was altered into δρᾶσαι by a grammarian who looked to ἀπῶσαι, κτεῖναι, and perh. also sought a simpler order. But for pres. infin. combined with aor. infin. cp. 623 θνῄσκειν ... φυγεῖν: Soph. Ant. 204μήτε κτερίζειν μήτε κωκῦσαι.” See also Soph. OC 732ἥκω γὰρ οὐχ ὡς δρᾶν τι βουληθείς,” where in prose we should have expected δρᾶσαι. The quantity of ἀπο-κρίνας is supported by Aesch. PB 24ἀπο-κρύψει: ἀπο-τροπή” and its cognates in Aesch. and Eur.: “ἐπι-κρύπτεινEur. Supp. 296: “ἐπι-κράνωνEur. IT 51. Blaydes conj. δοὺς δυοῖν κρῖναι κακοῖν (i.e. “giving me my choice of two ills”; cp. Soph. OC 640τούτων ... δίδωμί σοι κρίναντι χρῆσθαι”): Dindorf, θάτερον δυοῖν κακοῖν (where I should at least prefer κακόν): “but since, with either of these supposed readings, the construction would have been perfectly clear, it is hard to see how ἀποκρίνας— a far-sought word—could have crept in as an explanatory gloss. That, however, is Whitelaw's view, who suggests that the original may have been something like φαῦλον αἵρεσίν γ᾽ ἐμοί. Wolff would compress vv. 640 f. into one, thus: δρᾶσαι δικαιοῖ, δείν᾽, ἀποκτεῖναι λαβών.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: