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Headword: *diopete/s
Adler number: delta,1187
Translated headword: heaven-sent
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning something] falling down out of heaven.[1]
"Those among Greeks preparing cult-images [and] wanting to put fear into those seeing them used to maintain that the statue was sent out of heaven from Zeus and flew down, that it was something better than every human hand and invincible, for which reason they used to call it heaven-sent [diopetes] and a heavenly image [bretas], inasmuch as it resembled a mortal man [brotos].[2] Which is not to say that the opinion about the statues was vain and aimless; rather, they were either killing or banishing the sculptors, in order that no one would be able to say that the cult-image was made by hand; having concocted a rumour they sent it forth into the hearing of those who had been tricked, and this rumour led the city of the Ephesians astray. And that this is true, the thing which happened [...] in Alexandria confirms: for when Ptolemy had gathered craftsmen so as to make the statue of Artemis, after the work when he had dug a great hole and had hidden his trick, he ordered the craftsmen to dine in it; these men dining were buried there and died, having collected a wage worthy of their wickedness."[3]
Greek Original:
*diopete/s: e)c ou)ranou= katerxo/menon. o(/ti oi( par' *(/ellhsi ta\ co/ana kataskeua/zontes fo/bon e)mpoih=sai boulo/menoi toi=s o(rw=sin e)/faskon, o(/ti to\ a)/galma e)c ou)ranou= para\ tou= *dio\s e)pe/mfqh kai\ kate/pth, krei=tton u(pa/rxon pa/shs a)nqrwpi/nhs xeiro\s kai\ a)na/lwton, o(/qen kai\ diopete\s au)to\ kai\ ou)ra/nion bre/tas e)ka/loun, para\ to\ brotw=| e)oike/nai. o(/per ou)x ou(/tws h)=n h( peri\ tw=n a)galma/twn matai/a kai\ peplanhme/nh do/ca: a)lla\ tou\s a)galmatopoiou\s h)\ a)pokte/nontes h)\ fugadeu/ontes, i(/na mhde/nes ei)pei=n e)/xoien o(/ti xeiropoi/hto/n e)sti to\ co/anon, fh/mhn pla/santes e)n tai=s a)koai=s tw=n pefenakisme/nwn h)fi/esan, h(/tis kai\ th\n *)efesi/wn e)pla/na po/lin. o(/ti de\ a)lhqe/s e)sti tou=to, marturei= to\ e)n *)alecandrei/a| geno/menon: *ptolemai=os ga\r sunagagw\n texni/tas w(/ste to\n th=s *)arte/midos a)ndria/nta poih=sai, meta\ to\ e)/rgon bo/qron me/gan o)ru/cas kai\ to\n do/lon kru/yas e)ke/leuse tou\s texni/tas e)n au)tw=| deipnh=sai: oi(/tines deipnou=ntes e)kei=se katexw/sqhsan kai\ a)pe/qanon a)/cion misqo\n th=s kakourgi/as komisa/menoi.
[1] Likewise in other lexica. The headword -- neuter nominative/accusative singular of this adjective -- is possibly extracted from the quotation appended here (George the Monk, Chronicon 2.585.23-586.16), though the other lexica do not have it, and Latte on Hesychius s.v. claims a New Testament source: Acts 19.35, tou= diopetou=s.
[2] See already beta 534.
[3] This moralising anecdote is a puzzle. One would suppose 'Ptolemy' to be one of the fifteen Hellenistic Egyptian kings of that name -- yet, in a phrase omitted by the Suda, George describes the episode as having taken place 'the day before yesterday' (xqe\s kai\ prw/hn).
Keywords: art history; biography; Christianity; chronology; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; ethics; food; geography; historiography; history; religion; science and technology; trade and manufacture
Translated by: Bobbiejo Winfrey on 1 June 2003@08:07:24.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (modified translation; added notes and keywords; cosmetics) on 1 June 2003@08:42:19.
Catharine Roth (modified translation) on 1 June 2003@19:49:15.
David Whitehead (added note) on 2 June 2003@06:52:55.
David Whitehead (augmented notes and keywords; cosmetics) on 12 July 2012@07:27:48.
David Whitehead on 19 January 2014@08:57:48.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 19 January 2014@18:46:22.
David Whitehead (augmented notes; cosmetics) on 11 November 2015@06:07:32.


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