previous next

σοι, ‘in thy sight,’ ethic dat.: cp. O. T. 40κράτιστον πᾶσιν”: Ant. 904 n.

δυσώδης. This word might suggest that it was the presence of Ph. in the same ship which the Greeks found insupportable. But the poet cannot have meant that. Chrysè was imagined by him as close to Lemnos (fr. 352); and Ph. would have been put on board one of his own ships (1027). “δυσώδης” must refer, then, to his presence at the sacrifices in Chrysè, which his cries interrupted (cp. 8, n.). Sophocles probably took this touch from the Cypria—the epic prelude to the Iliad—in which it was said that Ph. was bitten at Tenedos, where the Greek warriors were feasting, and then “διὰ τὴν δυσοσμίαν ἐν Λήμνῳ κατελείφθη” (Proclus Chrest. p. 475 ed. Gaisford).

πῶςἔξεσθ̓, ὁμοῦ κ.τ.λ. The MSS. have πῶςεὔξεσθ̓, ἐμοῦ. For εὔξεσθ̓ only two senses are possible: (1) ‘vow’ to sacrifice. The pres. inf. could stand: cp. Aesch. Ag. 933ηὔξω θεοῖς δείσας ἂν ὧδ᾽ ἔρδειν τάδε”. But here the question is of actual sacrificing, not of vowing to do so at a future time. (2) ‘How will ye boast that ye sacrifice?’—a way of saying, ‘how will ye be able’ to do so. But such a phrase would be peculiarly awkward when the other sense of “εὔξεσθε” would necessarily be suggested by “θεοῖς, αἴθειν, σπένδειν”. Thus the context condemns εὔξεσθ̓. With regard to the conjecture ἔξεσθ̓ it should be noted that its probability is confirmed by that of the further conjecture, ὁμοῦ instead of ἐμοῦ. The traditional εὔξεσθ᾽ ἐμοῦ might, indeed, have arisen from ἔξεστ᾽ ἐμοῦ, but would have been a still easier corruption of ἔξεσθ᾽ ὁμοῦ. Given θ̓, the proximity of θεοῖς would suggest to a scribe that “ἔξεσθ̓” must be a blunder for “εὔξεσθ̓”. The corruption of “ἔξεσθ̓” into “εὔξεσθ̓” occurred earlier, we may infer, than that of “ὁμοῦ” into “ἐμοῦ”. And this inference is supported by the fact that a tradition of “ὁμοῦ” as a current v. l. is preserved in “Γ”, while the only trace of “ἔξεσθ̓” appears to be a correction (prob. conjectural) in V.

Against ἔξεσθ̓ it has been objected that the fut. is required. But Ph. is ironically repeating what the Greek chiefs said long ago, and is supposing that he is once more their comrade. ‘When I have once sailed with you, how can ye sacrifice?’ With “ὁμοῦ πλεύσαντος, ἐμοῦ” is easily understood: cp. Soph. Tr. 803τοσαῦτ᾽ ἐπισκήψαντος” (sc.αὐτοῦ”): Plat. Parm. 137Cἐμὲ γὰρ λέγεις τὸν νεώτατον λέγων. ἀλλ᾽ ἐρώτα ὡς ἀποκρινονμένου” (sc.ἐμοῦ”).

hide References (6 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (6):
    • Aeschylus, Agamemnon, 933
    • Plato, Parmenides, 137c
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 904
    • Sophocles, Oedipus Tyrannus, 40
    • Sophocles, Philoctetes, 8
    • Sophocles, Trachiniae, 803
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: