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Headword: *kakou= ko/rakos kako\n w)|o/n
Adler number: kappa,171
Translated headword: bad crow's bad egg
Vetting Status: high
Some say this proverb derives from the winged creature [of this name], because it is not edible itself, and nor is the egg which it lays. But others say it comes from Corax [Crow] the Syracusan,[1] who was the first to teach rhetorical technique. For they say that a pupil, named Tisias,[2] taken to court by him for his fee, said: 'If you win, I have not learned anything; but if you lose, you will not get your fee.' The jurors were astonished by the young man's sophism, and called out 'bad crow's bad egg'.
Greek Original:
*kakou= ko/rakos kako\n w)|o/n: tau/thn th\n paroimi/an oi( me\n a)po\ tou= pthnou= zw/|ou fasi\n ei)rh=sqai, o(/ti ou)/te au)to\ brwto/n e)stin ou)/te to\ w)|o/n, o(\ e)/xei. oi( de\ a)po\ tou= *ko/rakos tou= *surakousi/ou r(h/toros, prw=ton dida/cantos te/xnhn r(htorikh/n. u(po\ ga\r tou/tou, w(/s fasi, maqhth/s, *tisi/as o)/noma, misqo\n a)paitou/menos ei)s to\ dikasth/rion ei)=pen: ei) me/n me nikh/seias, ou)de\n mema/qhka: ei) de\ h(tthqh/sh|, ou) komi/sh| tou\s misqou/s. qauma/santes oi( dikastai\ to\ so/fisma tou= neani/ou e)pefw/noun: kakou= ko/rakos kako\n w)|o/n.
Zenobius 4.82.
[1] See kappa 2066 (Corax).
[2] No Suda entry but see OCD(4) s.v.
Keywords: aetiology; biography; chronology; daily life; economics; ethics; food; geography; imagery; law; proverbs; rhetoric; zoology
Translated by: Malcolm Heath on 25 April 2001@13:20:00.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (modified translation; added bibliography) on 27 April 2001@03:16:38.
David Whitehead (added note and keywords) on 13 September 2002@07:08:43.
David Whitehead (another keyword) on 10 October 2005@09:08:43.
David Whitehead (more keywords; tweaking) on 23 January 2013@07:38:47.
David Whitehead (updated a ref) on 4 August 2014@05:03:07.
Catharine Roth (another keyword) on 17 March 2019@01:53:13.


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