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χθονία, preceding βροτοῖσι, serves to indicate that the dead are meant (cp. 462βροτῶν” n.): the dat. is ethic, denoting those who perceive the “φάμα.” Others understand “βροτοῖσι” of the living, and explain the dat. as virtually=a gen.; ‘rumour on the part of mortals,’=‘a rumour which proceeds from them.’ (For such a dat., cp. Ant. 861ἁμετέρου πότμου κλεινοῖς Λαβδακίδαισιν”, n.) This seems less simple and less forcible.

φάμα: cp. Pind. O. 8. 81, where the news of an athlete's victory is brought to his dead father in the under-world by “Ἀγγελία”, daughter of Hermes; also Pind. O. 14. 20 ff., where “Ἀχὼ” is charged with a message ‘to the dark house of Persephonè.’

Some write Φάμα. Aeschines mentions “Φήμης θεοῦ μεγίστης βωμόν” at Athens (or. 1. § 291: cp. Hes. Op. 761 f.). But here, I think, “φάμα” rather hovers on the verge of personification than is actually personified, just as in Her. 9. 100φήμη..ἐσέπτατο ἐς τὸ στρατόπεδον”. So in Hom. Od. 24. 413, “ὄσσα δ᾽ ἄρ᾽ ἄγγελος ὦκα κατὰ πτόλιν ᾤχετο πάντῃ”, we need not write “Ὄσσα”.

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hide References (7 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (7):
    • Herodotus, Histories, 9.100
    • Hesiod, Works and Days, 761
    • Homer, Odyssey, 24.413
    • Pindar, Olympian, 14
    • Pindar, Olympian, 8
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 861
    • Sophocles, Electra, 462
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