previous next

102. Neuter plural with a plural verb.

When the neuter is merely a formal neuter, the plural verb may be used. So also when variety is emphasized (distributive plural). In older poetry, this occurs frequently when the plural form of the verb would be more convenient than the singular, yet not without a tinge of personification or a suspicion of dualism. In the mechanical syntax of later Greek the neuter plural with the verb plural becomes common.

οὐ μὴν τὰ μειράκια . . . τὴν αὐτὴν ἐμοὶ γνώμην ἔσχεν, ἀλλ᾽ ἐμὲ μὲν ἐπῄνεσαν . . . ἐκείνου δὲ κατεφρόνησαν”, ISOC.12.229; True, the lads did not take the same view with me, but (for all that) they applauded me and despised him.

ISOC.12.229:οὐ μὴν τὰ μειράκια τὰ πᾶσι παραγεγενημένα τούτοις τὴν αὐτὴν ἐμοὶ γνώμην ἔσχεν, ἀλλ᾽ ἐμὲ μὲν ἐπῄνεσαν ὡς διειλεγμένον τε νεαρωτέρως προσεδόκησαν, . . . ἐκείνου δὲ κατεφρόνησαν, οὐκ ὀρθῶς γιγνώσκοντες ἀλλὰ διημαρτηκότες ἀμφοτέρων ἡμῶν”.

ANT. 5.34:οὐδέτερα ὠφέλησαν”, Neither did any good (sc. “τἀληθῆ . . . τὰ ψευδῆ”); but Blass follows Reiske and the Zurich editors in reading “ὠφέλησεν”.

PLATO, Lach. 180E:τὰ γὰρ μειράκια τάδε πρὸς ἀλλήλους οἴκοι διαλεγόμενοι θαμὰ ἐπιμέμνηνται Σωκράτους καὶ σφόδρα ἐπαινοῦσιν”, These lads, while conversing with each other at home, often make mention of Socrates, and praise him highly. Legg. 856 D-E: “τῶν δὲ λαχόντων τὰ ὀνόματα εἰς” “Δελφοὺς πεμφθέντων”, Let the names of those who drew the lot be sent to Delphi.

XEN. Cyr. 2.3.9:ὥσπερ γε καὶ τἄλλα ζῷα ἐπίστανταί τινα μάχην ἕκαστα . . . καὶ φυλάττεσθαί γ̓, ἔφη, ἅπαντα ταῦτα ἑπίστανται” . 5.1.14:τὰ μοχθηρὰ ἀνθρώπια πασῶν οἶμαι τῶν ἐπιθυμιῶν ἀκρατῆ ἑστι, κἄπειτα ἔρωτα αἰτιῶνται” , The wretched mass of humanity is powerless over all its desires, and then they (the individuals) blame love. Hell. 1.1.23:παρὰ δὲ Ἱπποκράτους . . . εἰς Λακεδαίμονα γράμματα πεμφθέντα ἑάλωσαν εἰς Ἀθήνας” .

THUC.3.82.8:τὰ δὲ μέσα τῶν πολιτῶν . . . διεφθείροντο”, The neutral party of the citizens (in the state) were exposed to ruin. 5.75.2:Κάρνεια . . . ἐτύγχανον ὄντα” , The Karneia happened to be holding, but HDT.7.206:Κάρνεια γάρ σφι ἦν ἐμποδών”. 6.13.1: “ἐπιθυμίᾳ μὲν ἐλάχιστα κατορθοῦνται, προνοίᾳ δὲ πλεῖστα”.

HDT. 4.149:τοῖσι δὲ ἐν τῇ φυλη? ταύτῃ ἀνδράσι οὐ γὰρ ὑπέμειναν τὰ τέκνα, ἱδρύσαντο . . . ἱρόν: καὶ μετὰ τοῦτο ὑπέμειναν” .

ἐνεγκάτω τις ἔνδοθεν τῶν ἰσχάδων
τοῖς χοιριδίοισιν. ἆρα τρώξονται; βαβαί
οἷον ῥοθιάζουσ᾽, πολυτίμηθ᾽ Ἡράκλεις
ποδαπὰ τὰ χοιρί᾽; ὡς Τραγασαῖα φαίνεται ῾νοτε σινγ.᾿.
ἀλλ᾽ οὔτι πάσας κατέτραγον τὰς ἰσχάδας.

PIND. O. 2.92. 8.12. 10 (11), 85. P. 1.13. 4.121: “ἐκ δ᾽ ἄῤ αὐτου_ πομφόλυξαν δάκρυα γηραλέων γλεφάρων”. 9.88: “τά” (sc. “ὕδατα”) “νιν θρέψαντο καὶ Ἰφικλέα”, Which waters reared him and Iphikles.

See remark on HOMER, 97. Od. 4.132: “χρυσῷ δ᾽ ἔπι χείλεα κεκράαντο”. Ibid. 417-8: “ὅσσ᾽ ἐπὶ γαῖαν” | “ἑρπετὰ γίγνονται”. 437: “πάντα δ᾽ ἔσαν” (sc. “τὰ δέρματα”) “νεόδαρτα”.

Il. 7.102: “νίκης πείρατ᾽ ἔχονται ἐν ἀθανάτοισι θεοῖσιν”, The cords (lit. = rope-ends) of victory are in the holding of the immortal gods. (Elsewhere in Homer “πείρατα” takes a singular verb.) Ibid. 16.403-4: “ἐκ δ᾽ ἄρα χειρῶν” | “ἡνία ἠίχθησαν”, The reins leaped (like a pair of living things).

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: