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ἀνέφελονκακόν. Her sorrow—the long and bitter strife with her mother—is one over which, from its nature (“οἷον ἔφυ”), no veil can be drawn; it is manifest to all, and fierce, like the sun in a cloudless summer sky. It is a sorrow which can never be done away with, “οὔ ποτε καταλύσιμον”, because no reconciliation is possible. And it is one of which no time can efface the memory (“οὐδέ ποτε λησόμενον”).

The author of the scholium on 1245 read ἐνέβαλες:—“ἐπείπερ ὑπέμνησεν αὐτὴν τῆς τοῦ πατρὸς ἀναιρέσεως, διὰ τῶν προειρημένων δύο στίχων φησὶν ὅτι ἐνέβαλές μοι κακὸν ἀνέφελον”. This yields a good sense; ‘thou hast mentioned’ (mentionem iniecisti). Cp. Plat. Rep. 344Δ οἷον ἐμβαλὼν λόγον ἐν νῷ ἔχεις ἀπιέναι”. The traditional ἐπέβαλες has been explained in two ways. (1) ‘You have mentioned.’ For this sense there is no parallel. (2) ‘You have laid the burden of the woe upon me,’—i.e., ‘brought it to my recollection.’ This is perhaps just possible: but it is so artificial as to seem improbable. ὑπέβαλες, ‘you have suggested,’ would be an easy correction: cp. 833ὑποίσεις”. Ph. 1170παλαιὸν ἄλγημ᾽ ὑπέμνασας”. If, however, it was the original word, the corruption to “ἐπέβαλες” is strange, since the sense would have been clear.

καταλύσιμον, fitting here, as suggestive of “καταλύεσθαι ἔχθραν, πόλεμον, κ.τ.λ.

λησόμενον: ‘that never its own burden can forget,’ as Whitelaw renders. The “κακόν” is half-personified here, though not in the preceding clauses; precisely as in Ph. 1167 the “κήρ” (disease) is “οἰκτρὰ.. βόσκειν, ἀδαὴς δ̓” | “ἔχειν μυρίον ἄχθος ξυνοικεῖ” (n.).

The usual explanation is, ‘that cannot be forgotten’; but “λήσομαι” is nowhere passive. There is, indeed, no classical fut. pass. of “λανθάνω”, for (“ἐπι”)“λησθήσομαι” occurs only in later Greek (LXX. Ps. ix. 19, etc.). Even “λελήσεται”=‘will forget,’ Eur. Alc. 198.—“λησόμενον” could mean, ‘that cannot escape notice’; for, though the act. “λήσω” is more usual in this sense ( Soph. Tr. 455, Il. 23. 416), the midd. “λήσομαι” is so used by Hippocrates (2. 170), Arist. (Pr. Anal. 2. 19), Lucian, etc. But here, especially after “ἀνέφελον”, such a sense would evidently be too weak.

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hide References (7 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (7):
    • Euripides, Alcestis, 198
    • Homer, Iliad, 23.416
    • Plato, Republic, 344
    • Sophocles, Electra, 833
    • Sophocles, Philoctetes, 1167
    • Sophocles, Philoctetes, 1170
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 455
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