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[618]

[622] νόστοιο μεδοίατο, ‘might bethink themselves to go.’ This was a suggestion to Odysseus and Ajax that it was useless for them to tarry longer.

[625] μύθοιο τελευτή, i. e. the object of our mission.

[628] ἕαται, § 142.4, b.

[629] θέτο, ‘has made.’

[630] σχέτλιος, ‘implacable!’ § 170.—οὐδὲ μετατρέπεται κτλ., ‘nor does he even heed the love of his comrades—that love with which we honored him’ etc.

[632] νηλής, ‘unpitying!’

κασιγνήτοιο φονῆος ποινήν, ‘pay from the murderer of a brother’: “παρὰ φονῆος”, in Attic. “ποινή” of this sort is the Anglo-Saxon wergild.

[633] [ποινὴν] οὗ παιδὸς ... τεθνηῶτος, ‘or pay for his own son slain.’

παιδός is objective genitive. This primitive custom of indemnity for manslaughter is alluded to also 18.497-500. If not allowed to make this atonement, the guilty man had to flee the land. See Gardner and Jevons, Manual of Greek Antiquities, p. 407.

ἐδέξατο, § 184.

[634] μέν, ‘the slayer.’

[635] τοῦ δέ ... κραδίη, ‘while the heart of the other,’ i. e. the brother or father of the slain man.

[636] Ajax, who before has been addressing Odysseus, now turns directly to Achilles, with “σοὶ δ᾽ ἄλληκτόν τε κτλ.

[637] 637, 638. Ajax either fails to understand or ignores the fact that Achilles is angry on account of his wounded honor, not on account of the loss of Briseis alone.

[639] ἐπί, ‘in addition to.’

σὺ δ᾽ ἵλαον ἔνθεο θυμόν, ‘then do you make the spirit in your breast gracious.’ Ajax speaks to Achilles as to a god.

[640] αἴδεσσαι δὲ μέλαθρον, ‘and respect the roof’ that shelters us. Cf. l. 204. We are your guests, Ajax means; then show us the respect that is our due, by yielding to us.

δέ (after “ὑπωρόφιοι”)=“γάρ”.

[642] ὅσσοι, cf. l. 55.

[645] The force of τι is very important: ‘to a certain extent you have seemed to speak everything in harmony with my own desire.’ But Achilles can not forgive Agamemnon, for all the pleading. And now the very thought of him calls forth another burst of anger. Attention is called, in the scholia, to Achilles's change of attitude in the course of this interview: to Odysseus he said that he should said for home the next morning (ll. 357-361); and this is what Odysseus later reported to Agamemnon (ll. 682, 683, 690-692); to Phoenix he said that he would take into consideration the matter of going or staying (ll. 618, 619); and to Ajax he intimates that he will fight against the Trojans when dire necessity forces him (ll. 650655).

[646] 646-648. ὁππότ᾽ ἐκείνων μνήσομαι κτλ., ‘whenever I recall those deeds, how Atreus's son did me outrage in the presence of the Argives, as if I were some honorless outlander.’

[647] ἀσύφηλον, translated ‘outrage,’ is doubtful in respect to meaning.

[648] μετανάστην = Attic “μέτοικον”. The South African Uitlander (outlander) affords a suggestive modern instance of the prejudice against the intruding foreigner.

[654] τῇ ἐμῇ κλισίῃ, ‘this lodge of mine.’

[657] παρὰ νῆας, cf. A 327.

[668] While Scyros is still understood by some, as it was in ancient times, to have been a city of Phrygia, it is also identified with the island of that name. Accepting it as the well-known island, a scholiast relates that Achilles captured Scyros when the army was mustering at Aulis, because Dolopians were there who had revolted from the rule of Peleus; and he distributed the spoil among his companions in arms. Here too he became the father of Neoptolemus. According to this account, Achilles visited Scyros first when a warrior in full armor; and the later story of his rearing there was unknown to Homer. Later in the poem Achilles refers to his son Neoptolemus growing up in Scyros (T 326-333). And Neoptolemus is mentioned in the Odyssey as well, when Odysseus says he brought him away from Scyros (Od. 11.509).

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