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The gods are allowing her to perish. But it does not follow that they approve of her doom: for they are sometimes slow in punishing wrong (O. C. 1536). Hence the dilemma, introduced

by ἀλλ᾽ οὖν (‘well then’). (1) If the gods approve of my doom, then, after suffering it, I shall become conscious (in the other world) that I have sinned. (2) But if they disapprove of it, and regard Creon as the sinner, then they will punish him at last. And I could wish him no sorer doom than mine.

ἐν θεοῖς: cp. 459.

ξυγγνοῖμεν = συνειδείημεν. Lys. or. 9 § 11συνέγνωσαν δὲ καὶ αὐτοὶ σφίσιν ὡς ἠδικηκότες”, ‘became conscious that they had done wrong.’ The word could also mean, “ὁμολογήσαιμεν”, ‘confess’: but in that sense it regularly takes either an inf., as Her. 1.91συνέγνω ἑωυτοῦ εἶναι τὴν ἁμαρτάδα”: or a dependent clause, as Plat. Legg. 717Dξυγγιγνώσκοντα ὡς εἰκότως...θυμοῖτ᾽ ἄν.

ἡμαρτηκότες belongs more closely to the verb than does παθόντες: cp. Plat. Phaedo 70A (“ ψυχὴ”) “διασκεδασθεῖσα οἴχηται διαπτομένη”. For the tragic masc. plur., when a woman speaks of herself, cp. El. 399.

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hide References (7 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (7):
    • Herodotus, Histories, 1.91
    • Lysias, For the Soldier, 11
    • Plato, Laws, 717d
    • Plato, Phaedo, 70a
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 459
    • Sophocles, Electra, 399
    • Sophocles, Oedipus at Colonus, 1536
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