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[377] θεῶν μέγαν ὅρκον, ‘a mighty oath by the Gods;’ “ὅρκον” is the cognate accusative with “ἀπώμνυ”. The context here settles the translation, but “θεῶν ὅρκος” can, by itself, equally well mean that by which the Gods themselves swear; as h. Hom. Cer. 260ἴστω γὰρ θεῶν ὅρκος, ἀμείλικτον Στυγὸς ὕδωρ” , cp. Od.10. 299.See also Hesiod , Hesiod Theog.784Ἶριν ἔπεμψε θεῶν μέγαν ὅρκον ἐνεῖκαι . . πολυώνυμον ὕδωρ”. Ameis prefers to render ἀπ-ώμνυ in the sense of ‘sware unreservedly,’ as “ἀποειπεῖν Il.9. 431, “ἀποθαυμάσαι Od.6. 49; but it seems simpler to take it in the ordinary sense which it bore in later Greek, viz. ‘sware that she would not,’ as “ἀπώμοτονSoph. Ant.388.But cp. Thuc.5. 51ἀπομόσαι ἐναντίον τῶν Ἑλλήνων μὴν ἀποδώσειν ὕστερον τὴν καταδίκην”, a usage which Arnold (ad loc.) considers to have come from the fact that the oath of an accused party is generally exculpatory, as disclaiming a charge. Nitzsch renders “ἀπώμνυ”, ‘took the oath in due form,’ explained in the next line by the words “τελεύτησέν τε τὸν ὅρκον”. So “ὄμοσεν” will refer to the substance of the oath and “τελεύτησεν” to the form in which it was couched. Fäsi compares supra 9 “αὐτὰρ ἐπεί τ᾽ ἤγερθεν ὁμηγερέες τ᾽ ἐγένοντο”, for another seeming tautology that may thus be explained.

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hide References (7 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (7):
    • Hesiod, Theogony, 784
    • Homer, Iliad, 9.431
    • Homer, Odyssey, 10.299
    • Homer, Odyssey, 6.49
    • Homeric Hymns, Hymn 2 to Demeter, 260
    • Sophocles, Antigone, 388
    • Thucydides, Histories, 5.51
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