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Oedipus is indeed old and worn (110): but μέγας contrasts the man of mature age with the girl, his defenceless guide (752). Cp. Od. 2.313 (Telemachus) “ἐγὼ δ᾽ ἔτι νήπιος ἦα:
νῦν δ᾽, ὅτε δὴ μέγας εἰμί

” (full-grown).

σμικροῖς: for the allusive (masc.) plur., instead of σμικρᾷ, cp. O. T. 366σὺν τοῖς φιλτάτοις” (with Iocasta): for the sense, below, 957 ἐρημία μεσμικρὸν τίθησι”. The antithesis of persons suggests that σμικροῖς is masc. rather than neut.: so below 880: Ai. 158σμικροὶ...μεγάλων χωρίς”, 160μετὰ γὰρ μεγάλων βαιὸς ἄριστ᾽ ἂν
καὶ μέγας ὀρθοῖθ᾽ ὑπὸ μικροτέρων

”. If σμικροῖς were neut., it could mean: (a) like the masc., weak persons: cp. 1 Cor. i. 27τὰ μωρὰ τοῦ κόσμου ἐξελέξατο θεός, ἵνα καταισχύνῃ τοὺς σοφούς”: (b) fig., “"weak things,"” frail supports. But the neut. plur. σμικρά in such antitheses usu.=“"lowly fortunes"”: Pind. P. 3. 107σμικρὸς ἐν σμικροῖς, μέγας ἐν μεγάλοις

”: Eur. El. 406εἴπερ εἰσὶν εὐγενεῖς
οὐκ ἔν τε μικροῖς ἔν τε μὴ στέρξουσ᾽ ὁμῶς;

ὥρμουν: usu. ἐπί τινος: Dem. De Cor. § 281οὐκ ἐπὶ τῆς αὐτῆς” (ἀγκύρας) “ὁρμεῖ τοῖς πολλοῖς”: but also “ἐπί τινι”: Plut. Solon 19 (he added the Βουλή to the Areopagus) “οἰόμενος ἐπὶ δυσὶ βουλαῖς ὥσπερ ἀγκύραις ὁρμοῦσαν ἧττον ἐν σάλῳ τὴν πόλιν ἔσεσθαι”. For the metaphor cp. Soph. fr. 619ἀλλ᾽ εἰσὶ μητρὶ παῖδες ἄγκυραι βίου”. Eur. fr. 858ἥδε μοι τροφός,
μήτηρ, ἀδελφή, δμωίς, ἄγκυρα, στέγη

”. Or. 68ὡς τά γ᾽ ἄλλ᾽ ἐπ᾽ ἀσθενοῦς
ῥώμης ὀχούμεθ᾽

”: Med. 770ἐκ τοῦδ᾽ ἀναπτόμεσθα πρυμνήτην κάλων”. Campbell understands — "Nor, being a prince (μέγας), as I am, should I have taken up my rest here to crave a small boon." But (1) μέγας in this sense ill suits the present tone of Oed.: cp. 110, 393. (2) This version of ἐπὶ σμικροῖς ὥρμουν is impossible: the scholium “ἐπὶ εὐτελέσιν αἰτήμασιν οὐκ ἂν σφόδρα ἱκέτευον” evades the point.

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hide References (16 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (16):
    • Demosthenes, On the Crown, 281
    • Euripides, Electra, 406
    • Euripides, Medea, 770
    • Euripides, Orestes, 68
    • Homer, Odyssey, 2.313
    • New Testament, 1 Corinthians, 1.27
    • Pindar, Pythian, 3
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 158
    • Sophocles, Ajax, 160
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 393
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 752
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 110
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 880
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 957
    • Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus, 366
    • Plutarch, Solon, 19
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