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ξανθαῖσι. This epithet for the Aetolian mares may have been suggested to the poet by a Homeric reminiscence. It is by a chestnut horse (“φοῖνιξ”, Il. 23. 454) that Idomeneus recognises from afar the team of Diomedes, “Αἰτωλὸς γενεήν” (ib. 471).

πώλοις. Throughout this passage, “πῶλος” is a mere synonym for “ἵππος” (725, 735, 738, 748). Yet special races for “πῶλοι”, as distinct from “ἵπποι τέλειοι”, had been established in the Pythian games before 500 B.C. ( Paus. 10. 7. 7). At Olympia, however, no special race for “πῶλοι” existed before 384 B.C. (id. 5. 8. 10).—The Aetolian, like Orestes, drives mares, which were most generally used. In the Homeric chariot-race, however ( Il. 23), there are three teams of horses against two of mares; and the horses win the first and second places.

Μάγνης: from Magnesia, that mountainous tract which stretches southward along the east coast of Thessaly from the mouth of the Peneius to the Gulf of Pagasae. Here the name serves to recall the legends of the knightly Minyae. In Pind. P. 4. 117, Jason at Iolcus says, “λευκίππων δὲ δόμους πατέρων...φράσσατέ μοι”.

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hide References (4 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (4):
    • Homer, Iliad, 23
    • Homer, Iliad, 23.454
    • Pausanias, Description of Greece, 10.7.7
    • Pindar, Pythian, 4
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