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καινῷ καινὸν: the epithet, strictly applicable to the “πέπλωμα” only, is given to the “θυτήρ” also, expressing the new radiance with which the robe shall invest its wearer. This common idiom ( Her.2. 173ἐν θρόνῳ σεμνῷ σεμνὸν θωκέοντα”) occurs elsewhere also under a similar condition,— viz., where the repeated adj. serves for collective emphasis rather than for separate characterisation: Soph. El.742ὀρθὸς ἐξ ὀρθῶν δίφρων”: Soph. Ai.267κοινὸς ἐν κοινοῖσι λυπεῖσθαι”: ib. 467 “ξυμπεσὼν μόνος μόνοις”. But it should be observed that, in this passage, the repetition has a further motive. It is a touch of tragic irony, like the unconscious ambiguity of “προσαρμόσαι” in 494. For “θυτὴρ καινός” could mean, ‘a sacrificer of a novel kind’: cp. Soph. O. C.1542ἐγὼ γὰρ ἡγεμὼν” | “σφῷν αὖ πέφασμαι καινός”. For the sinister sense of “καινός”, cp. 867.

As to the wearing of new, or freshly washed, garments on such occasions, cp. Od.4. 750(Penelope is to pray to Athena) “καθαρὰ χροῒ εἵμαθ᾽ ἑλοῦσα”.

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hide References (6 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (6):
    • Herodotus, Histories, 2.173
    • Homer, Odyssey, 4.750
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 267
    • Sophocles, Electra, 742
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 1542
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 867
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