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THE hymn appears to be rather a prayer for safety at sea (cf. 7) than an ordinary prelude, although the phrase “ἄρχομ᾽ ἀείδειν” suggests a rhapsodist. It should be compared with Hom. Ep. vi, which, however, is more personal in tone, and refers to a special occasion, whereas “πλώουσιν ἄρηγε” may be quite general.

ἀμφί: see on vii. 1.

[3] Ἑλικῶνα: cf. Il. 20.404 Ἑλικώνιον ἀμφὶ ἄνακτα”. Commentators, both ancient and modern, have doubted whether the adjective refers to Helice in Achaea, or to Helicon, the Boeotian mountain. Aristarchus (ap. E. M. 547. 16) takes the latter view, “ἀπὸ Ἑλικῶνος . . . ἐπεὶ Βοιωτία ὅλη ἱερὰ Ποσειδῶνος”; the schol. A on “Υl.c. prefers Helice, and this is strongly supported by Il. 8.203, where Helice and Aegae are mentioned together as sacred to Poseidon (for Helice cf. Il. 2.574, for Aegae Il. 13.21). The two towns were close neighbours on the Corinthian gulf. Leaf on “Υl.c., comparing this passage, suggests that Helicon was another form of Helice, and distinct from the Boeotian mountain. There is, however, no authority for Helicon=Helice. The proper epic adjective from Helice would presumably be “Ἑλικήϊος” (see E. M. l.c.); it is, however, possible that the author of “Υ” intended Helice, but used the wrongly formed “Ἑλικώνιος” which had a familiar sound; the hymn-writer translated the adjective into “Ἑλικῶνα”, regardless of Il. 8.203; so Hom. Ep. vi. 2εὐρυχόρου μεδέων ἠδὲ ζαθέου Ἑλικῶνος” (of Poseidon), a passage which disposes of Martin's “Ἑλίκην τε” here. In later times the worship of Heliconian Poseidon was connected with Helice (see Paus.vii. 24. 5 f., Strabo 384); the cult was also famous among the Ionians at Panionium ( Herod.i. 148), and at Athens (Frazer on l.c., Harrison M. M. A. A. p. 231). Helice was destroyed by an earthquake in 373 B.C. For Poseidon “Ἑλικώνιος” cf. Dittenberger Sylloge 603, 637.

[5] Poseidon, as horse-tamer and saviour of ships, is akin to the Dioscuri (see xxxiii).

[7] Hermann's Orpheum audire videaris is rightly refuted by Baumeister; the hymn is “Homeric” in spirit, although the language of this line suggests Orph. h. lxiv. 12 f. “ἀλλά, μάκαρ . . . εὐμενὲς ἦτορ ἔχων” (quoted by Gemoll).

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