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817. Verbs and expressions which contain such negative ideas as impossibility, difficulty, unwillingness, or impropriety sometimes take μὴ οὐ (instead of the simple μή) with the infinitive, to express a real negation, even when the leading verb is not negatived. E.g. Δήμου ἄρχοντος ἀδύνατα μὴ οὐ κακότητα ἐγγίνεσθαι, it is impossible that vice should not come in (as if it were οὐ δυνατά). HDT. iii. 82. Δεινὸν ἐδόκεε εἶναι μὴ οὐ λαβεῖν αὐτά. Id. i. 187. Ὥστε πᾶσιν αἰσχύνην εἶναι μὴ οὐ συσπουδάζειν, “so that all were ashamed not to join heartily in the work.” XEN. An. ii. 3, 11. So ᾐσχύνετο μὴ οὐ φαίνεσθαι, Cyr. viii. 4, Cyr. 5. Αἰσχρόν ἐστι μὴ οὐχὶ φάναι. PLAT. Prot. 352 D. Πολλὴ ἄνοια μὴ οὐχ ἡγεῖσθαι. Symp. 210B. So after ἀνόητον, ib. 218 C; after ἄλογον, id. Soph. 219E (see 814). For χαλεπός followed by μὴ οὐ, see example under 819.

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