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τᾶς πειθοῦς παγχρίστῳκ.τ.λ.” The corresponding verses of the strophe (653 f.) appear sound: “νῦν δ᾽ Ἄρης οἰστρηθεὶς” | “ἐξέλυσ᾽ ἐπίπονον ἁμέραν”. The traditional text here, “τᾶς πειθοῦς παγχρίστῳ” | “συγκραθεὶς ἐπὶ προφάσει θηρός”, makes a long syllable answer to the second of “ἐξέλυς᾿”, and to the second of “ἁμέραν”.

Let us now examine the text in detail.

(1) παγχρίστῳ does not look like a gloss. Dindorf, who thinks it one, can only suggest that it arose from “πάγχριστος”, a gloss upon “συγκραθείς”. This is hardly probable. Sophocles is fond of intensive compounds with “πᾶς”: cp. 505, 652: El.851πανσύρτῳ, παμμήνῳ”: Ant.1282παμμήτωρ”: fr. 347 “πάγξενος”, etc. As an epithet for the robe, “παγχρίστῳ”, ‘thoroughly anointed,’ is suitable. (Cp. Deianeira's words in 580.) But it cannot be a subst., as the schol. on 663 would make it (“λείπει τῷ πέπλῳ”).

(2) The words ἐπὶ προφάσει θηρός= “ἐπίπονον ἁμέραν” in 654. Besides being unmetrical, “θηρός” requires an unexampled sense for “προφάσει”, viz., ‘precept.’ Hence Dindorf reads “προφάνσει” (a word which is not extant), and in 654 “ἐπιπόνων ἁμερᾶν”. For “θηρός”, M. Haupt conjectured φάρους (“ΘΗΡΟΣ, ΦΑΡΟΣ”): for the “α^”, cp. 916. The words “ἐπὶ προφάσει φάρους” then mean, ‘on the pretext of the robe.’ The robe was the “πρόφασις” for using the love-charm. “παγχρίστῳ” can be retained in the dat., agreeing with “προφάσει” (cp. Ant.794 n.).

(3) For συγκραθεὶς, cp. Ant.1311δειλαίᾳ δὲ συγκέκραμαι δύᾳ” (‘steeped in’ it): Ai.895οἴκτῳ τῷδε συγκεκραμένην” (‘steeped in this lament,’—i.e., in the anguish of it). Plut. 853 “οὕτω πολυφόρῳ συγκέκραμαι δαίμονι”. Thus the primary sense of mixture, or fusion, led to that of intimate union. If we accept “φάρους”, then “συγκραθεὶς” would be most naturally taken in the sense which “πανίμερος”, just before it, could suggest,— ‘made one in heart’ with Deianeira.

There remains, however, the metrical discrepancy between συγκραθεὶς and ἐξέλυς᾿ in 654. Hermann read ἐξείλυς᾿ (‘unrolled,’ meaning, ‘disentangled,’ ‘brought to a smooth close’). But “ἐξέλυς᾿” seems genuine. It is possible, however, that “συγκραθεὶς” was an explanation of συντακεὶς (suggested by Paley), which would give the same sense. Cp. Aesch. Suppl.1029γαμέτας” | “συντηχθεὶς αὔραις ἀδόλοις” | “γενναίας ἀλόχῳ ψυχᾶς”, ‘husband made one with wife in the sincere spirit of a loyal soul.’ So “συντακείς τινι”, of close attachment, Plat. Symp. 183EPlat. Symp., 192

Either “συγκραθείς” or “συντακείς” would here admit a secondary sense, unconsciously prophetic of the dire event (833 “προστακέντος ἰοῦ”: 836 “προστετακώς”),— like “προσαρμόσαι” in 494.—For other views, see Appendix.

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hide References (10 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (10):
    • Aeschylus, Suppliant Maidens, 1029
    • Plato, Symposium, 192
    • Plato, Symposium, 183e
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 895
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 1282
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 1311
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 794
    • Sophocles, Electra, 851
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 505
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 916
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