στάσιμον τέταρτον. See sect. 10 of the first note in the Appendix. 1st strophe (1186-1195). How vain is mortal life! 'Tis well seen in Oedipus: 1st antistrophe (1196-1203): who saved Thebes, and became its king: 2nd strophe (1204-1212): but now what misery is like to his? 2nd antistrophe (1213-1222). Time hath found thee out and hath judged. Would that I had never known thee! Thou wast our deliverer once; and now by thy ruin we are undone.

[1187] ὡς with ἐναριθμῶ: τὸ μηδὲν adverbially with ζώσας: i.e. how absolutely do I count you as living a life which is no life. ζώσας should not be taken as = “while you live,” or “though you live.” We find οὐδέν εἰμι, “I am no more,” and also, with the art., τὸ μηδέν εἰμι, “I am as if I were not”: Soph. Trach. 1107κἂν τὸ μηδὲν ”: Soph. Aj. 1275τὸ μηδὲν ὄντας.” Here ζώσας is a more forcible substitute for οὔσας, bringing out the contrast between the semblance of vigour and the real feebleness.

ἴσα καὶ = ἴσα (or ἴσονὥσπερ, a phrase used by Thuc. 3.14ἴσα καὶ ἱκέται ἐσμέν),” and Eur. El. 994σεβίζω σ᾽ ἴσα καὶ μάκαρας),” which reappears in late Greek, as Aristid. 1. 269 (Dind.).

ἐναριθμῶ only here, and (midd.) in Eur. Orest. 623εἰ τοὐμὸν ἔχθος ἐναριθμεῖ κῆδός τ᾽ ἐμόν” = ἐν ἀριθμῷ ποιεῖ, if you make of account.

[1190] φέρει = φέρεται, cp. 590.

[1191] δοκεῖν “to seem,” sc. εὐδαιμονεῖν: not absol., “to have reputation,” a sense which οἱ δοκοῦντες, τὰ δοκοῦντα can sometimes bear in direct antithesis to οἱ ἀδοξοῦντες or the like (Eur. Hec. 291 etc.) Cp. Eur. Her. 865τὸν εὐτυχεῖν δοκοῦντα μὴ ζηλοῦν πρὶν ἂν θανόντ᾽ ἴδῃ τις”: Soph. Aj. 125ὁρῶ γὰρ ἡμᾶς οὐδὲν ὄντας ἅλλο πλὴν εἴδωλ᾽ ὅσοιπερ ζῶμεν κούφην σκιάν.

[1192] ἀποκλῖναι a metaphor from the heavenly bodies; cp. ἀποκλινομένης τῆς ἡμέρηςHdt. 3.104): and so κλίνει ἡμέρα, ἥλιος in later Greek: Dem. 1.13οὐκ ἐπὶ τὸ ῥᾳθυμεῖν ἀπέκλινεν.Xen. Mem. 3.5.13 πόλις ... ἐπὶ τὸ χεῖρον ἔκλινεν.

[1193] τὸν σόν τον κ.τ.λ. The apparently long syllable τὸν (= ἐξ in 1202) is “irrational, ” having the time-value only of ˘: see Metrical Analysis. The τὸ σόν τοι of the MSS. involves a most awkward construction:— “having thy example,—having thy fate, I say, (as an example) ”; for we could not well render “having thy case τὸ σόν as an example. ” Against τὸν σόν, which is decidedly more forcible, nothing can be objected except the threefold repetition; but this is certainly no reason for rejecting it in a lyric utterance of passionate feeling.

[1195] οὐδὲν βροτῶν nothing (i.e. no being) among men, a stronger phrase than οὐδένα: Nauck compares fr. 652 οἱ δὲ τῇ γλώσσῃ θρασεῖς φεύγοντες ἄτας ἐκτός εἰσι τῶν κακῶν: Ἄρης γὰρ οὐδὲν τῶν κακῶν λωτίζεται, “no dastard life ”: HH Herm. 34οὔπερ τι πεφυγμένον ἔστ᾽ Ἀφροδίτην οὔτε θεῶν μακάρων οὔτε θνητῶν ἀνθρώπων.” Add Soph. Phil. 446 (with reference to Thersites being still alive) ἔμελλ᾽: ἐπεὶ οὐδέν πω κακόν γ᾽ ἀπώλετο, ἀλλ᾽ εὖ περιστέλλουσιν αὐτὰ δαίμονες: καί πως τὰ μὲν πανοῦργα καὶ παλιντριβῆ χαίρουσ᾽ ἀναστρέφοντες ἐξ Ἅιδου, τὰ δὲ δίκαια καὶ τὰ χρήστ᾽ ἀποστέλλουσ᾽ ἀεί. The οὐδένα of the MSS. involves the resolution of a long syllable (the second of οὐδὲν)which has an ictus; this is inadmissible, as the ear will show any one who considers the antistrophic verse, 1203, Θήβαισιν ἀνάσσων.

[1197] καθ᾽ ὑπερβολὰν τοξεύσας having hit the answer to the riddle of the Sphinx, when Teiresias and all others had failed: cp. 398: Aesch. Ag. 628ἔκυρσας ὥστε τοξότης ἄκρος σκοποῦ.

ἐκράτησε At 1193 the Chorus addressed Oedipus: at 1197 (ὅστις κ.τ.λ.) they turn to invoke Zeus as the witness of his achievements; and so in 1200 L, which here has the corrupt ἐκράτησας, rightly gives ἀνέστα. Then at 1201 (ἐξ οὗ κ.τ.λ.) they resume the direct address to Oedipus, which is thenceforth maintained to the end of the ode. To read ἐκράτησας and ἀνέστας would be to efface a fine trait, marking the passion of grief which turns from earth to heaven, and then again to earth.

τοῦ πάντ᾽ εὐδαίμονος for the adverbial πάντα see on 475; also 823, 1425.

[1198] φθίσας because the Sphinx, when her riddle was solved, threw herself from a rock (Apollod. 3.5): cp. 397 ἔπαυσά νιν.

[1199] τὰν γαμψώνυχα κ.τ.λ. The place of the second adj. may be explained by viewingπαρθένον-χρησμῳδόν as a composite idea: cp. Soph. Phil. 393τὸν μέγαν Πάκτωλον-εὔχρυσον”: Soph. OC 1234τό τε κατάμεμπτον ... γῆρασ-ἄφιλον”: Soph. El. 133τὸν ἐμὸν ... πατέρ᾽ ἄθλιον.” So Pind. P. 1.95, 5. 99 etc. This is not like τὸ σὸν στόμα ... ἐλεινόν in 672 (n.). - παρθένον: see on κόρα, 508.

[1200] θανάτων πύργος see on 218.

[1204] ἀκούειν to hear of, defining ἀθλιώτερος: Eur. Hipp. 1202φρικώδη κλύειν.” Whose woes are more impressive to others, or more cruel for himself? Cp. Soph. OC 306πολὺ ... τὸ σὸν ὄνομα διήκει πάντας.” The constr. is τίς ἀθλιώτερος ἀκούειν, τίς ἀθλιώτερος ξύνοικος ἐν ἄταις κ.τ.λ., who is more wretched to hear of (whose story is more tragic), who is more wretched as dwelling amid woes (whose present miseries are sharper)? It is not possible to supply μᾶλλον with ξύνοικος fromἀθλιώτερος.

[1205] In 1214 the δικάζει τὸν of the MSS. should be kept (see Metrical Analysis): here the simple transposition of τίς ἐν πόνοις is far the most probable cure for the metre. ἐν with ἄταις as well as πόνοις: see on 734: for the redundant ἐν ... ξύν-,1126.

[1206] The dat.ἀλλαγᾷ might be instrumental, but is rather circumstantial, = τοῦ βίου ἠλλαγμένου.

[1208] λιμὴν schol. ὅτι μήτηρ ἦν καὶ γυνὴ Ἰοκάστη, ἣν λέγει λιμένα. Cp. 420 ff.

[1210] πεσεῖν here = ἐμπεσεῖν (which Hartung would read, but unnecessarily). Aristoph. Thes. 1122πεσεῖν ἐς εὐνὰς καὶ γαμήλιον λέχος.” The bold use is assisted byθαλαμηπόλῳ (bridegroom) which goes closely with πεσεῖν.

[1211] ἄλοκες cp. 1256, Soph. Ant. 569, Aesch. Seven 753.

[1212] σῖγ᾽ cp. Aesch. Ag. 37οἶκος δ᾽ αὐτός, εἰ φθογγὴν λάβοι, σαφέστατ᾽ ἂν λέξειεν.

[1213] ἄκονθ᾽ not as if he had been a criminal who sought to hide conscious guilt; but because he had not foreseen the disclosure which was to result from his inquiry into the murder of Laius. —χρόνος, which φύει ἄδηλαSoph. Aj. 647): fr. 280 πρὸς ταῦτα κρύπτε μηδέν, ὡς πάνθ᾽ ὁρῶν καὶ πάντ᾽ ἀκούων (cp. note on 660) πάντ᾽ ἀναπτύσσει χρόνος: see on 614. Time is here invested with the attributes of the divine omniscience and justice.

[1214] δικάζει (see on 1205), prop. “tries, ” as a judge tries a cause δίκην δικάζει: here, “brings to justice,” punishes: a perhaps unique poetical use, for in Pind. O. 2.59, which Mitchell quotes, ἀλιτρὰ ... δικάζει τις = simply “tries.” Aesch. has another poet. use, Aesch. Ag. 1412δικαάζεις ... φυγὴν ἐμοί” = καταδικάζεις φυγὴν ἐμοῦ.

γάμον πάλαι τεκνοῦντα καὶ τεκνοῦμενον one in which τεκνούμενος has long been identified with τεκνῶν: i.e. in which the son has become the husband. The expression is of the same order as “τά γ᾽ ἔργα μου πεπονθότ᾽ ἐστὶ μᾶλλον δεδρακότα,Soph. OC 266.

[1216] ἰὼ Λαΐειον τέκνον Erfurdt's is the most probable way of supplying the required syllable, and Reisig's objection to its place is answered by Soph. Aj. 395ἔρεβος φαεννότατον.” Hermann, however, preferred , as a separate exclamation: “Alas, of Laius (oh horror!) the son. ” Bothe's Λαϊήιον could be supported by Eur. IA 757Φοιβήιον δάπεδον”: Eur. fr. 775. 64 ὁσίαν βασιλήιον: but seems less likely here.

[1218-1219] The MSS. give δύρομαι γὰρ ὡς περίαλλα[sic; in one MS. ὡς περίαλα] ἰαχέων ἐκ στομάτων. I conjecture δύρομαι γὰρ ὥσπερ ἰάλεμον χέων ἐκ στομάτων: “I lament as one who pours from his lips a dirge ”: i.e., Oedipus is to me as one who is dead. Cp. Pind. I. 7.58ἐπὶ θρῆνον ... πολύφαμον ἔχεαν,” “over the tomb they poured forth a resounding dirge. ” My emendation has been adopted by Prof. Kennedy (ed. 1885). Every attempt to explain the vulgate is unavailing. (1) ὡς περίαλλ᾽ is supposed to be like ὡς ἐτητύμως, ὡς μάλιστα, “in measure most abundant. ” Now περίαλλα could mean only “preeminently,” “more than others”: Soph. fr. 225 νόμων οὓς Θαμύρας περίαλλα μουσοποιεῖ, “strains which Thamyras weaves with art preeminent”: Aristoph. Thes. 1070τί ποτ᾽ Ἀνδρομέδα περίαλλα κακῶν μέρος ἐξέλαχον;” “why have I, Andromeda, been dowered with sorrows above all women?” Pind. P. 11.5θησαυρὸν ὂν περίαλλ᾽ ἐτίμασε Λοξίας,” honoured preeminently. Here, περίαλλα is utterly unsuitable; and the added ὡς makes the phrase stranger still. (2) The MSS. have ἰαχέων. Both ἰα^χεῖν and ἰα_χεῖν occur: but the latter should, with Dindorf, be written ἰακχέω. Eur. Her. 752ἰακχήσατε”: 783 ὀλολύγματα ... ἰακχεῖ: Eur. Orest. 826Τυνδαρὶς ἰάκχησε τάλαινα”: 965 ἰακχείτω δὲ γᾶ Κυκλωπία. The participle, however, is unendurably weak after δύρομαι, and leaves ἐκ στομάτων weaker still. (3) ἐκ στομάτων can mean only “from my lips” (the plur. as Soph. Trach. 938ἀμφιπίπτων στόμασιν,” kissing her lips: Eur. Alc. 404ποτὶ σοῖσι πίτνων στόμασιν”: it could not mean “loudly. ” (4) Elmsley, doubtless feeling this, took ἰαχέων as gen. of a supposed, but most questionable, ἰαχέος, “loud,” formed from ἰαχή. Erfurdt conjectured ἰακχίων, “from lips wild as a bacchant's.” But a Greek poet would not have brought Iacchos and Thanatos so close together; χωρὶς τιμὴ θεῶν. (5) ἰάλεμον gives exactly the right force; for them, Oed. is as the dead. ἰάλεμος is a wail for the dead in the four places of Eur. where it occurs (Eur. Orest. 1391, Eur. Phoen. 1033, Eur. Tro. 600, Eur. Tro. 1304), in Eur. Rh. 895, and in the one place of Aesch. Supp. 115, which is just to our point: the Chorus of Danaides say, πάθεα ... θρεομένα ... ἰηλέμοισιν ἐμπρεπῆ ζῶσα γόοις με τιμῶ, “lamenting sorrows meet for funeral wails (i.e. the sorrows of those who are as dead), while yet living, I chant mine own dirge.” ἐκ στομάτων fits χέων, since χεῖν was not commonly used absolutely for “to utter” (as by Pindar, l. c. above). (6) The corruption may have thus arisen in a cursive MS.: ἰάλεμον being written ἰαλεμὸ, the last five letters of ὡσπεριαλεμοχῈων would first generate αχεων (as in one MS.), or, with the second stroke of the μ, ιαχεων: the attempt to find an intelligible word in the immediately preceding group of letters would then quickly produce the familiar περίαλλα (in one MS. περίαλα). The nonelision of the final α in the MSS. favours this view. As to metre, with πατρὶ in 1209, a tribrach (-τρὶ θαλαμ answers to a dactyl ὡς περι-, my ὥσπερ ἰ-), whether we keep the traditional text, or adopt my conjecture, or that of Wecklein or of Burges; though Wecklein, by a strange oversight, has noticed this objection as if it were peculiar to my conjecture. Wunder's πόσει for πατρὶ in 1209 would restore exact correspondence, and may be right; but I rather prefer, with Heinrich Schmidt (Compositionslehre 64), to regard the ὡς as an “irrational syllable ”: see Metrical Analysis.

[1221] τὸ δ᾽ ὀρθὸν εἰπεῖν like ὡς εἰπεῖν ἔπος, prefaces the bold figure of speech: I might truly say that by thy means (ἐκ σέθεν)I received a new life (when the Sphinx had brought us to the brink of ruin); and now have again closed my eyes in a sleep as of death, —since all our weal perishes with thine. The Thebans might now be indeed described as στάντες τ᾽ ἐς ὀρθὸν καὶ πεσόντες ὔστερον (50).

ἀνέπνευσα “revived, ” i.e. was delivered from anguish; cp. Hom. Il. 11.382ἀνέπνευσαν κακότητος,” had a respite from distress: Soph. Aj. 274ἔληξε κἀνέπνευσε τῆς νόσου.

[1222] κατεκοίμησα cp. Aesch. Ag. 1293ὡς ἀσφάδαστος ... ὄμμα συμβάλω τόδε”: Soph. Aj. 831καλῶ θ᾽ ἅμα πομπαῖον Ἑρμῆν χθόνιον εὖ με κοιμίσαι.

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