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Headword: *dei=gma
Adler number: delta,300
Translated headword: display, Deigma
Vetting Status: high
As a technical term, the item of goods-for-sale being displayed. There is also a certain place in the commercial port at Athens, to which the display-items used to be brought, called this.[1] It is the Attic custom, to designate actual places by the things in the place.[2]
[The] Deigma was a place in Peiraieus, where many foreigners and citizens used to gather and converse. Aristophanes adds "of the lawsuits" [to the noun dei=gma], so that he can display and criticize the Athenians as litigious: "in the Deigma of the Lawsuits what terrible troublemakers did I hear in dispute".[3]
[The word] deigma also means proof. Aristophanes [writes]: "as proof of his [sc. style of] life, he was throwing out feathers in front of the doors".[4] As a sort of sign and demonstration of the luxury to be found inside at his house, he was throwing down in front of the doors feathers from birds plucked and slaughtered for a celebration.
Greek Original:
*dei=gma: kuri/ws me\n to\ deiknu/menon a)f' e(ka/stou tw=n pwloume/nwn. e)/sti de\ kai\ to/pos tis e)n tw=| *)aqh/nhsin e)mpori/w|, ei)s o(\n ta\ dei/gmata e)komi/zeto, kalou/menos ou(/tws. *)attiko\n de/ e)stin e)/qos to\ kalei=n a)po\ tw=n e)n tw=| to/pw| kai\ au)tou\s tou\s to/pous. *dei=gma to/pos h)=n e)n *peiraiei=, e)/nqa polloi\ sunh/gonto ce/noi kai\ poli=tai kai\ e)logopoi/oun. to\ de\ tw=n dikw=n prose/qhken *)aristofa/nhs, i(/na dei/ch| kai\ diaba/lh| tou\s *)aqhnai/ous w(s filodi/kous. oi(/wn a)rgalewta/twn h)/kous' e)n tw=| dei/gmati tw=n dikw=n a)ntilego/ntwn. *dei=gma kai\ h( e)/ndeicis. *)aristofa/nhs: tou= bi/ou d' e)ce/balle dei=gma pro\ tw=n qurw=n ptera/. oi(=on th=s par' au)tw=| e)/ndon trufh=s shmei=on kai\ a)po/deicis pro\ tw=n qurw=n au)tou= ta\ tw=n o)rni/qwn ptera\ tilqe/ntwn kai\ tuqe/ntwn pro\s eu)wxi/an proe/balle.
[1] See Garland 154 (with 219), and index s.v.
[2] From Harpokration s.v., commenting on the appearance of the word in Demosthenes (50.24 [web address 1]) and Lysias (fr. 232.6 Sauppe, now 279.6 Carey OCT).
[3] Aristophanes, Knights 978-80 (web address 2), with comment from the scholia there.
[4] Aristophanes, Acharnians 989 (web address 3), with comment from the scholia there.
Robert Garland, The Piraeus (London 1987)
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2,
Web address 3
Keywords: comedy; daily life; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; economics; food; geography; law; religion; rhetoric; zoology
Translated by: David Whitehead on 18 October 2000@05:46:05.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (added note and keyword; cosmetics) on 5 September 2002@11:13:41.
William Hutton (augmented headword, modified translation, added links and keywords, cosmetics, set status) on 19 July 2003@05:05:33.
David Whitehead (added a keyword) on 19 July 2003@07:02:24.
David Whitehead (updated n.2; tweaks and cosmetics) on 4 July 2011@09:40:28.


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