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Headword: *)/eforos
Adler number: epsilon,3953
Translated headword: Ephoros, Ephorus
Vetting Status: high
of Kyme and Theopompos, son of Damasistratos, of Chios;[1] both students of Isocrates,[2] but from the start they were opposites of one another in terms both of character and of discourse. Ephoros, you see, was simple in character, and in the interpretation of history laid-back and lazy and devoid of intensity; Theopompos, meanwhile, was jaundiced and ill-tempered in character, but in expression he was rich and eloquent and full of force, a dogged pursuer of the truth in what he wrote. Isokrates, at any rate, said that Theopompos needed a rein, but Ephoros a spur.[3] Theopompus was exiled, became a suppliant of Ephesian Artemis, and wrote many letters to Alexander [sc. the Great] against the Chians,[4] and at the same time he also wrote many encomia of Alexander himself.[5] It is also said that he wrote a diatribe against him that is not preserved.
Greek Original:
*)/eforos *kumai=os kai\ *qeo/pompos *damasistra/tou, *xi=os, a)/mfw *)isokra/tous maqhtai/, a)p' e)nanti/wn to/ te h)=qos kai\ tou\s lo/gous o(rmw/menoi. o( me\n ga\r *)/eforos h)=n to\ h)=qos a(plou=s, th\n de\ e(rmhnei/an th=s i(stori/as u(/ptios kai\ nwqro\s kai\ mhdemi/an e)/xwn e)pi/tasin: o( de\ *qeo/pompos to\ h)=qos pikro\s kai\ kakoh/qhs, th=| de\ fra/sei polu\s kai\ sunexh\s kai\ fora=s mesto/s, filalh/qhs e)n oi(=s e)/grayen. o( gou=n *)isokra/ths to\n me\n e)/fh xalinou= dei=sqai, to\n de\ *)/eforon ke/ntrou. fuga\s de\ geno/menos o( *qeo/pompos i(ke/ths e)ge/neto th=s *)efesi/as *)arte/midos, e)pe/stelle/ te polla\ kata\ *xi/wn *)aleca/ndrw|, kai\ me/ntoi kai\ au)to\n *)ale/candron e)gkwmia/sas polla/. le/getai de\ kai\ yo/gon au)tou= gegrafe/nai, o(\s ou) fe/retai.
[1] For Ephoros (FGrH 70; OCD(4) 510) see already epsilon 3930; for Theopompos (FGrH 115; OCD(4) 1461-2 'Theopompus[3]') see theta 172.
[2] Isocrates: iota 652.
[3] A memorable aphorism much echoed (by Cicero, Quintilian, et al.) but not necessarily reliable in this context: Plato is reported to have said the same about Aristotle and Xenocrates (Diogenes Laertius 4.6), and Aristotle -- echoing Plato -- about Theophrastos and Kallisthenes (Diogenes Laertius 5.39). For arguments that the Plato/Aristotle/Xenocrates version is the original see D. Whitehead, "The rein and the spur", in N. Sekunda (ed.), Corolla Cosmo Rodewald (Gdansk 2007) 39-42.
[4] FGrH 115 F251-254.
[5] Cf. FGrH 155 F 255 (Theon, Progymnasmata 2).
On Ephoros: G.L. Barber, The Historian Ephorus (Cambridge 1935)
On Theopompos: M.A. Flower, Theopompus of Chios (Oxford 1994)
Keywords: biography; ethics; geography; historiography; history; politics; religion; rhetoric
Translated by: William Hutton on 4 December 2000@22:36:33.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (augmented notes and bibliography; cosmetics) on 5 December 2000@06:06:12.
David Whitehead (augmented and modified notes; cosmetics) on 14 January 2004@04:44:05.
David Whitehead (tweaking and updating) on 19 November 2012@09:09:50.
David Whitehead (updated 2 refs) on 3 August 2014@09:13:27.
David Whitehead (more keywords) on 21 March 2016@07:45:52.


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