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And altogether the poet has attributed devotion to such things to the Suitors, and to the Phæacians, but not to Nestor or to Menelaus. And Aristarchus did not perceive that in his marriage feast, after the entertainment had lasted some time, and the principal days of the revel were over, in which the bride had been taken to the house of the bridegroom, and the marriage of Megapenthes was completed, Menelaus and Helen were left to themselves and feasted together. He, I say, not perceiving this, but being deceived by the first line—
Where sate Atrides 'midst his bridal friends,
he then added these lines, which do not properly belong to this place—
While this gay friendly troop the king surround,
With festival and mirth the roofs resound;
A bard amid the joyous circle sings
High airs, attemper'd to the vocal strings,
Whilst, warbling to the varied strain, advance
Two sprightly youths to form the bounding dance:—
transferring them with the error in the reading and all from the eighteenth book of the Iliad, where he relates the making of the arms of Achilles; for it ought to be red not ἐξάρχοντες, the dancers beginning, but (τοῦ ᾠδοῦ, that is to say,) when the poet began to sing. For the word [p. 296] ἐξάρχω has peculiar reference to preluding on the lyre. On which account Hesiod also says in his Shield of Hercules—
The holy goddesses, the Muses nine,
Preluded (ἐξῆρχον) with a sacred melody.1
And Archilochus says—
Himself preluding (ἐξάρχων) with a sacred paean
Set to the Lesbian flute.
And Stesichorus calls the Muse the Beginner of Song (ἀρχεσίμολπος). And Pindar calls Preludes the Leaders of the Dance. And Diodorus the Aristophanian enclosed the whole account of the wedding in brackets; thinking that the first days only were alluded to, and disregarding the termination and what came after the banquet. And then he says we ought to write the words δοίω δὲ κυβιστητῆρε κατ᾽ αὐτοὺς with an aspirate, καθ᾽ αὑτοὺς, but that would be a solecism. For κατ᾽ αὐτοὺς is equivalent to κατὰ σφᾶς αὐτοὺς, but to say ἑαυτοὺς would be a solecism.

1 Hes. Scut. Here. 205.

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