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θάκει δὲ προστρόπαιος: cp. Aesch. Eum. 41ἕδραν ἔχοντα προστρόπαιον”. Here “θάκει” denotes a kneeling posture (“προσπεσών” 1181): cp. Soph. Ph. 293γονυπετεῖς ἕδρας προσπίτνω ς᾿”, O.T. 2 “ἕδρας..θοάζετε” (n.). The offerings in the child's hands will show that he formally supplicates (“προστρέπεται”, cp. 831) the “χθόνιοι θεοί” and the spirit of the dead man to avert outrage from the corpse.

κόμας, offerings to the dead, as in Il. 23. 135, where the locks of hair are laid on the corpse (“θριξὶ δὲ πάντα νέκυν καταείνυσαν, ἃς ἐπέβαλλον κειρόμενοι”). So in El. 449 f. Chrysothemis is told to lay locks of her own hair and her sister's on Agamemnon's tomb,—the significance of the act being marked by the prayer which is to follow the gift: “αἰτοῦ δὲ προσπίτνουσα γῆθεν εὐμενῆ ἡμῖν ἀρωγὸν αὐτὸν εἰς ἐχθροὺς μολεῖν” (453 f.). In its primitive symbolism the severed hair meant that the person from whose head it was cut devoted himself to the dead, and (as it were) escorted him to the shades; the gift of hair being a substitute for self-immolation at the grave.

τρίτου, marking the completion of the lucky number; O. C. 7 f. “αἱ πάθαι..χὡ χρόνος”.. | ..“καὶ τὸ γενναῖον τρίτον”: Aesch. Eum. 758 ff. “Παλλάδος καὶ Λοξίου ἕκατι καὶ τοῦ πάντα κραίνοντος τρίτου Σωτῆρος”.

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hide References (7 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (7):
    • Aeschylus, Eumenides, 41
    • Aeschylus, Eumenides, 758
    • Euripides, Electra, 449
    • Homer, Iliad, 23.135
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 831
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 7
    • Sophocles, Philoctetes, 293
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