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μά (A) [α^], Particle used in asseverations and oaths, c. acc. of the deity or thing appealed to; in itself neither affirmative nor negative, but made so by prefixing ναί or οὐ, or, in Att., by the context: thus,
I. ναὶ μὰ . . , in affirmation, ναὶ μὰ τόδε σκῆπτρον yea by this staff, Il.1.234, cf. h.Merc.460; “ναὶ μὰ γὰρ ὅρκονPi.N.11.24; ναὶ μὰ Δία, ναὶ μὰ τὸν Δία, etc., Ar.Ach.88, Pl.R.407b, etc.; also “μὰ ναίInscr.Cypr.109 H.
III. after Hom. μά is freq. used alone,
1. chiefly in negation when the negative follows, “μὰ Δί᾽ οὐκ εἶδον ἐμαυτοῦ ἀμείνω ὑλοτόμονIG12.1084; μὰ τὴν πατρῴαν ἑστίαν, ἀλλ᾽ οὐχ ὕβρει λέγω τάδ' S.El.881; “μὰ τοὺς παρ᾽ Ἅιδῃ νερτέρους ἀλάστορας, οὔτοι ποτ᾽ ἔσται τοῦτοE.Med.1059; “μὰ τὸν Ἀπόλλω, οὔκAr.Th.269, cf. A.Ag.1432, E.Cyc.262, Pl.Prt.312e; “μὰ τὴν γῆν, μὴ σύγε δῷςAnaxil.9; “μὰ δαίμονας, οὐκ ἀπὸ ῥυσμοῦ εἰκάζωCall.Epigr.44; μὰ τὸν Δία δὲ οὐδὲ νομίζω . . IG22.1099.30 (ii A.D.); “μὰ σέ, Καῖσαρ, οὐδείς σε νικᾷD.C.61.20: with preceding neg., “οὐδ᾽ ὄναρ, μὰ τὰς ΜοίραςHerod. 1. II: in answers, when the negation is expressed in the question, οὐκ αὖ μ᾽ ἐάσεις; Answ. “μὰ Δί᾽, ἐπεὶ κἀγὼ πόνηρός εἰμιAr.Eq.336, cf. 338 (where οὐκ ἐάσω is to be supplied after μὰ Δία from the question, cf. Ra.951, Pl.400): when ἀλλά follows, δύο δραχμὰς μισθὸν τελεῖς; Answ. “μὰ Δί᾽, ἀλλ᾽ ἔλαττονId.Ra.174 (where οὐ τελῶ is understood, cf. ib. 753, 779, 1053, X.Mem.3.13.3): in “μὰ γῆν, μὰ κρήνας, μὰ ποταμούς, μὰ νάματαAntiph.296 = Timocl.38, the context is missing.
b. in reply to an imper., ἀπόδος αὐτό; Answ. “μὰ τὸν ἈπόλλωAr.Th. 748.
2. in later Gr. in affirmation, “δακρύω μὰ σέ, δαῖμονAnnales du Service 27.32 (Egypt); “μὰ τὴν Ἄρτεμιν Ἀκοντίῳ γαμοῦμαιAristaenet. 1.10, cf. Ach.Tat.8.5.
IV. in colloquial discourse, esp. Att. (cf. Greg.Cor.p.150 S., Ph.2.271), the name of the deity sworn by was often suppressed, to avoid a downright oath, “μὰ τόνAr.Ra.1374 (lyr.), Pl.Grg.466e; “μὰ τήνMen.369; “ναὶ μὰ τόνCall.Fr.66d, Ael. NA3.19; ναὶ μὰ τάς (sc. Χάριτας) Suid. s.v. ναὶ μὰ τό (codd. dett.); “οὐ μὰ τὸνοὐκ ὀμόσωAP12.201 (Strat.), cf. 7.112 (D.L.).
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  • Cross-references in general dictionaries from this page (33):
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    • Aelian, De Natura Animalium, 3.19
    • Achilles Tatius, Leucippe et Clitophon, 8.5
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