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Headword: *deinokra/ths
Adler number: delta,337
Translated headword: Deinokrates, Deinocrates
Vetting Status: high
A Messenian, [he was] not only by his occupation but also by his nature a courtier and a military man. He displayed a perfectly competent manner, but he was counterfeit and tawdry.[1] For in matters of war he much surpassed the rest with regard to his readiness and daring and he was distinguished in circumstances of personal danger. Similarly, with regard to the rest of his disposition he was gracious and quick-witted in conversations, adaptable and diplomatic at social events, and along with this he was fond of love-affairs, [but] concerning public or political matters he was to the utmost degree incapable of paying attention or exercising sensible insight into the future, and even of preparing and delivering a speech to the masses. And having set in motion the beginning of great disasters for his country, he supposed he did nothing crucial, but he kept leading that style of life, foreseeing nothing of what would be, being in love and drinking heavily from day-time on,[2] and dedicating his attentions to artistic performances. But Titus [Flamininus] forced him to comprehend some small degree of his crisis. For seeing him dancing in long robes at a drinking party, he was silent for the time being, but when Deinocrates met him the next day and asked something about the mother-country,[3] he said, "I will do everything I can, Deinocrates; but I marvel at how you can dance at a party having set in motion the beginning of such disasters for the Greeks." He then seemed to restrain himself a little bit and to learn that he had given away an unfitting suggestion of his native character and nature. However, he went then into Greece[4] with Titus, convinced that by his arrival matters in Messene would be managed according to his will.
Greek Original:
*deinokra/ths, *messh/nios, ou) mo/non kata\ th\n tribh/n, a)lla\ kai\ kata\ th\n fu/sin au)liko\s kai\ stratiwtiko\s a)/nqrwpos. to\n de\ pragmatiko\n tro/pon e)pe/faine me\n te/leion, h)=n de\ yeudepi/grafos kai\ r(wpiko/s. e)/n te ga\r toi=s polemikoi=s kata\ me\n th\n eu)xe/reian kai\ th\n to/lman polu\ die/fere tw=n a)/llwn kai\ lampro\s h)=n e)n toi=s kat' i)di/an kindu/nois. o(moi/ws de\ kai\ kata\ th\n a)/llhn dia/qesin e)n me\n tai=s o(mili/ais eu)/xaris kai\ pro/xeiros h)=n, para/ te ta\s sunousi/as eu)tra/pelos kai\ politiko/s, a(/ma de\ tou/tois file/rastos, peri\ koinw=n h)\ politikw=n pragma/twn a)teni/sai de\ kai\ proi+de/sqai to\ me/llon e)mfro/nws, e)/ti de\ paraskeua/sasqai kai\ dialexqh=nai pro\s plh=qos e)s te/los a)du/natos. kai/ pote kekinhkw\s a)rxh\n mega/lwn kakw=n th=| patri/di, telei/ws ou)de\n w)/|eto poiei=n, a)lla\ th\n au)th\n a)gwgh\n h)=ge tou= bi/ou, proorw/menos ou)de\n tw=n mello/ntwn, e)rw=n de\ kai\ kwqwnizo/menos a)f' h(me/ras kai\ toi=s a)kroa/masi ta\s a)koa\s a)nateqeikw/s. braxei=a/n te/ tina th=s perista/sews e)/mfasin o( *ti=tos au)to\n h)na/gkase labei=n. i)dw\n ga\r au)to\n para\ po/ton e)n makroi=s i(mati/ois o)rxou/menon, parauta\ me\n e)siw/phse, th=| d' au)/rion e)ntugxa/nontos au)tou= kai/ ti peri\ th=s patri/dos a)ciou=ntos, e)gw\ me/n, w)= *deinokra/th, pa=n, e)/fh, poih/sw to\ dunato/n: e)pi\ de\ sou= qauma/zw pw=s du/nh| para\ po/ton o)rxei=sqai, thlikou/twn pragma/twn a)rxh\n kekinhkw\s e)n toi=s *(/ellhsi. dokei= de\ to/te braxu/ ti sustalh=nai, kai\ maqei=n w(s a)noi/keion u(po/qesin th=s i)di/as ai(re/sews kai\ fu/sews a)pode/dwke. plh\n to/ ge parei=nai ei)s th\n *(ella/da meta\ tou= *ti/tou, pepeisme/nos e)c e)fo/dou ta\ kata\ th\n *messh/nhn xeirwqh/sesqai kata\ th\n au(tou= bou/lhsin.
Polybius 23.5.4-14, on the year 184/3 BCE (when this Deinokrates went on an embassy to Rome). Compare Livy 39.51, and consult F.W. Walbank, A Historical Commentary on Polybius, iii (Oxford 1979) 220-222.
[1] cf. rho 260.
[2] cf. kappa 2228.
[3] i.e. Messene.
[4] The text of the original reads to/te parh=n for the Suda's to\ ge parei=nai.
Keywords: biography; clothing; definition; ethics; food; gender and sexuality; historiography; history; military affairs; politics; rhetoric; women
Translated by: Jennifer Benedict on 30 March 2005@22:01:12.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (tweaked translation; augmented notes and keywords) on 31 March 2005@05:08:58.
David Whitehead (more keywords) on 20 November 2005@10:07:30.
David Whitehead (typo; another keyword; other cosmetics) on 23 March 2008@12:06:28.
David Whitehead on 20 June 2012@05:47:33.


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