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Headword: Ψεκάς
Adler number: psi,39
Translated headword: drip, drop
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] dew. Thus Antimachos used to be called Psekas ["Sputterer"]. [It is a term] applied to spitters. This man was a melic poet. He was given the name because he used to sprinkle [with spit] whomever he was talking to. There was also an Olympic [athlete] so called. This Antimachos appears to have created a decree prohibiting the ridicule of named persons in comedy; and on this account many of the poets did not come forward to take a chorus and many of the choristers starved.[1] Concerning this Antimachos Aristophanes says: "whom may I yet see longing for a cuttlefish; and may it, when boiled and salted and served on the table, run aground; and then, when he is about to take it, may a dog grab it and eat it. This [should be] one misfortune for him".[2]
Greek Original:
Ψεκάς: δρόσος. Ἀντίμαχος οὕτως ἐκαλεῖτο Ψεκάς. ἐπὶ τῶν πτυελωδῶν. οὗτος δὲ μελῶν ἦν ποιητής. οὕτω δὲ ἐκλήθη, διότι προσέρραινε τοὺς ὁμιλοῦντας διαλεγόμενος. ἦν δέ τις καὶ Ὀλυμπικὸς οὕτω καλούμενος. ἐδόκει δὲ ὁ Ἀντίμαχος οὗτος ψήφισμα πεποιηκέναι, ὅτι μὴ δεῖ κωμῳδεῖν ἐξ ὀνόματος: καὶ ἐπὶ τούτῳ πολλοὶ τῶν ποιητῶν οὐ προσῆλθον ληψόμενοι τὸν χορὸν καὶ πολλοὶ τῶν χορευόντων ἐπείνων. περὶ τούτου τοῦ Ἀντιμάχου φησὶν Ἀριστοφάνης: ὃν ἔτ' ἐπίδοιμι τευθίδος δεόμενον: ἡ δ' ὠπτημένη σίζουσα πάραλος ἐπὶ τραπέζης κειμένη ὀκέλλοι: κᾆτα μέλλοντος λαβεῖν αὐτοῦ, κύων ἁρπάσας φάγοι. τοῦτο μὲν αὐτῷ κακὸν ἕν.
For the bulk of this entry, after the opening headword and gloss, see already under alpha 2683; and cf. also sigma 387, tau 424.
[1] "The only evidence for [this or other] legal restrictions comes from the scholia, and is open to the suspicion that it may be based on nothing but false inferences from jokes in comedies" (D.M. MacDowell, Aristophanes and Athens (Oxford 1995) 22-26, at 25).
[2] Aristophanes, Acharnians 1156-61 (web address 1), with scholion to 1150.
Associated internet address:
Web address 1
Keywords: athletics; biography; comedy; constitution; definition; ethics; food; history; law; medicine; poetry; zoology
Translated by: David Whitehead on 1 January 2006@07:11:07.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (added link, set status) on 1 January 2006@22:04:54.
David Whitehead (another note) on 2 January 2006@03:24:51.
David Whitehead on 5 November 2013@06:14:13.


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