τὸ δ᾽ ἁλώσιμον ἐμᾷ φρ., as far as my thought can grasp the question, =“καθ᾽ ὅσον ἐγὼ κατανοῶ τὸ πρᾶγμα”. Cp. Plat. Tim. 29A “τὸ λόγῳ καὶ φρονήσει περιληπτόν”. The acc. is one of ‘respect’ (like “τοὐμὸν μέρος”, etc.). πόνος ὁ μὴ φοβῶν κράτιστος, ‘the enterprise not fraught with fear is best’ (Whitelaw): a sententious utterance, like “βράχιστα γὰρ κράτιστα τἀν ποσὶν κακά” ( Ant. 1327). They mean that it is best to depart noiselessly with the bow, and so avoid the risks involved in taking Philoctetes. ὁ μὴ φοβῶν is left vague by the proverb-like brevity of the phrase: it means, ‘which does not disturb the sleeping Philoctetes.’ The word πόνος is also in keeping with the gnomic form,—implying that there will be least “πόνος” in such a course; as if it were, “πόνος ἐλάχιστος κράτιστος”. Cp. “σιγῆς ἀκίνδυνον γέρας” (meaning that “σιγή”, though it wins no positive “γέρας”, risks nothing): ‘Discretion is the better part of valour,’ etc.
This text is part of:
Table of Contents: