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που, ‘I ween’: a phrase frequent in this play; cp. 382, 622, 850, 1008: Tr. 846.

νίκας τινὸς ἀκάρπωτον χάριν, on account of some victory (given by her to Ajax) which brought her no “καρπός”, no reward; ῥαψευσθεῖσα ἐνάρων, either, it may be, because she was disappointed of spoils; εἴτ᾽ ἀδώροις ἐλαφαβολίαις, or by reason of deer-slaying after which he made no “δῶρα” to her. The general cause, denoted by “νίκας.. χάριν”, is divided into two special cases; (1) a victory in war; (2) a victory in hunting. [This is simpler than to suppose that “νίκας..χάριν” refers to the withholding of a public offering,—which Ajax ought to have made on behalf of those who fought under his command; and that “ἐνάρων” refers to a private vow, which he had made on his own account. On this view, three different causes would be indicated; and “ που” in 176 would be disjunctive,—‘either, I ween,’—as it is in Od. 13. 234.]

νίκας ἀκάρπωτον χάριν=“νίκας..ἀκαρπώτου χάριν” ( Ant. 793 f. “νεῖκος ἀνδρῶν ξύναιμον”): cp. I. T. 566 “κακῆς γυναικὸς χάριν ἄχαριν ἀπώλετο”. Legg. p. 853 D “ὧν δὴ χάριν οὐκ ἐπίχαριν λέγοιμ ἂν..νόμον”. (Others take “χάριν” as acc. of respect with “ψευσθεῖσα”: ‘disappointed as to the tribute,’ etc.)

ῥα: the disjunctive” (or “”=“ἠέ”) is rarely thus followed by “ῥα”. (Cp. 172 n.) For εἴτε, cp. Eur. Alc. 114 Λυκίας εἴτ᾽ ἐπὶ τὰς ἀνύδρους Ἀμμωνίδας ἕδρας.

κλυτῶν: cp. the Homeric “κλυτὰ τεύχεα.

ψευσθεῖσα with gen.: cp. 1382: Tr. 712εἴ τι μὴ ψευσθήσομαι γνώμης”.

ἀδώροιςἐλαφαβολίαις: for the causal dat., cp. Tr. 1127τοῖς γε πρόσθεν ἡμαρτημένοις” (n.). Those who retain the MS. reading δώροις understand: ‘deceived either by gifts of spoils (promised, but not given), or in regard to slaying of deer.’ (Nauck, reading the genitive “ἐλαφαβολίας”, take “δώροις” with that also.) But this is awkward. And, in support of ἀδώροις, it should be noted that Sophocles elsewhere also has co-ordinated a causal dat. with a partic. (or adj.) of causal force, like “ψευσθεῖσα” here. See Tr. 239ΔΗ. εὐκταῖα φαίνων, ᾿πὸ μαντείας τινός; ΛΙ. εὐχαῖς” (‘for a vow’). O. C. 333ΟΙ. πότερα πόθοισι; ΙΣ. καὶ λόγων γ᾽ αὐτάγγελος”.

ἐλαφαβολίαις: Artemis the huntress (“Ἀγροτέρα”) was especially “Ἐλαφηβόλος”: see on O. C. 1092 f., and cp. Tr. 213Ἄρτεμιν Ὀρτυγίαν ἐλαφαβόλον”.

The causes here conjectured for her wrath remind us of her anger with Oeneus, who had failed to render firstfruits at harvest-tide ( Il. 9. 534χωσαμένη, οἱ οὔ τι θαλύσια γουνῷ ἀλωῆς Οἰνεὺς ῥέξ̓”). Cp. Eur. Hipp. 147 where the Chorus suggest that the Cretan Dictynna may be wroth with Phaedra, as “ἀνίερος ἀθύτων πελάνων” (for having failed to make holy offerings of honey-cakes).


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hide References (15 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (15):
    • Euripides, Alcestis, 114
    • Euripides, Hippolytus, 147
    • Homer, Iliad, 9.534
    • Homer, Odyssey, 13.234
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 1382
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 172
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 382
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 793
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 1092
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 333
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 1127
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 213
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 239
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 712
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 846
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