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μόνος: referring to “τέκνον”: cp. Il. 22. 84φίλε τέκνον”: Eur. Andr. 570τέκνου τε τοῦδ̓, ὃν κ.τ.λ. παρὰ σκηναῖσιν”, where Tecmessa had left him at 809.

δῆτ᾽ αὐτὸν ἄξεις. There is no other example of “δῆτα” as first word of a verse. It is usually read as first word of a clause in Nub. 399 (“καὶ πῶς”) “εἴπερ βάλλει τοὺς ἐπιόρκους, δῆτ᾽ οὐχὶ Σίμων᾽ ἐνέπρησεν”..; where, however, Dindorf gives “πῶς οὐχι” (“πῶς δῆτ̓” being a variant for “δῆτ̓”). There is, however, no reason to doubt it here. With Sophocles the words sometimes run on from the end of one trimeter to the beginning of the next, as if there were no break between the verses. See e.g. 1089 “ὅπως μή”: Ant. 409πᾶσαν κόνιν σήραντες κατεῖχε τὸν νέκυν”: Ph. 263ὃν οἱ δισσοὶ στρατηγοί”: O. T. 332τί ταῦτ᾽ ἄλλως ἐλέγχεις;” (Such elision at the end of the verse was remarked by the ancients as peculiar to Sophocles: see on O. T. 29.) The place of “δῆτα” here is only another example of the same tendency, and is illustrated by that of “ποτέ” in O. T. 1084οὐκ ἂν ἐξέλθοιμ᾽ ἔτι ποτ᾽ ἄλλος”. This virtual synaphea of trimeters naturally occurs most often in passages where, as here, the speech is excited or rapid.

κενῆς, ‘robbed’ of her young: Bion Idyll. I. 59χήρα δ᾽ Κυθέρεια, κενοὶ δ᾽ ἀνὰ δώματ᾽ Ἔρωτες”. The adj. is ‘proleptic’: if the child is not quickly brought, the mother will seek him only to find that she is bereaved. Cp. Ant. 791δικαίων ἀδίκους φρένας παρασπᾷς”: Aesch. Pers. 298ἄνανδρον τάξιν ἠρήμου θανών”. Schol. “οἱ γὰρ κυνηγοὶ τηροῦσι τὸν καιρὸν ὁπότε ἔρημοι τῶν μητέρων γίγνονται οἱ σκύμνοι”. —Others take κενῆς as merely ‘separated’ (at this time) from her child: but this would be a strange sense for it.

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hide References (9 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (9):
    • Aeschylus, Persians, 298
    • Euripides, Andromache, 570
    • Homer, Iliad, 22.84
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 409
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 791
    • Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus, 1084
    • Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus, 29
    • Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus, 332
    • Sophocles, Philoctetes, 263
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