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Headword: *panselh/nw|
Adler number: pi,214
Translated headword: full moon
Vetting Status: high
Aristophanes is speaking about Kleonymos: "how long [a time] did he take to close up his arse?" And the reply, "until the full moon".[1] Because the Hellenes did everything with reference to the moon. At any rate when Datis and Antiphernes,[2] generals of the Persians' king, had invaded Marathon, they waited for the full moon as the occasion on which to begin the war. And before the Lakedaimonians could get there, the Athenians had already engaged the enemy.[3] So Aristophanes is joking, as usual.
Greek Original:
*panselh/nw|: *)aristofa/nhs fhsi\ peri\ *klewnu/mou: po/sou to\n prwkto\n sunh/gage; kai/ fhsi, th=| panselh/nw|. dio/ti oi( *(/ellhnes pa/nta pro\s th\n selh/nhn e)/pratton a)poble/pontes. *da/tidos gou=n kai\ *)antife/rnous strathgw=n tou= *persw=n basile/ws e)s *maraqw=na e)mbeblhko/twn, perie/menon th\n panse/lhnon e)pi\ tw=| to/te e)celqei=n e)pi\ to\n po/lemon. kai\ pri\n tou\s *lakedaimoni/ous paragene/sqai, katw/rqwsan *)aqhnai=oi to\n po/lemon. pai/zei ou)=n *)aristofa/nhs dia\ to\ e)/qos.
[1] Aristophanes, Acharnians 83-4 (slightly modified: web address 1), with comment from the scholia there. The arse in question does not belong to Kleonymos, but to the constipated king of Persia; cf. xi 137. Kleonymos (kappa 1736), an associate of Aristophanes' nemesis Kleon (kappa 1731), is mentioned a few lines later as the butt of a different joke.
[2] The second name should be Artaphernes/Artaphrenes, the Great King's nephew (Herodotus 6.94 and elsewhere), alpha 4022. The slip is the Suda's, not the scholiast's.
[3] See Herodotus 6.106 (web address 2): the Athenians had asked for help from Sparta, but the Spartans had replied that they were not allowed to travel before the full moon; cf. phi 347.
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: biography; chronology; comedy; daily life; ethics; geography; historiography; history; medicine; military affairs; religion
Translated by: Alex Gottesman on 17 January 2003@11:19:38.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (modified translation; added x-refs and keyword; cosmetics) on 19 January 2003@05:38:43.
David Whitehead (more keywords; tweaking) on 13 August 2013@07:57:20.
David Whitehead (expanded notes) on 19 June 2016@05:51:32.
Catharine Roth (another keyword) on 1 May 2021@00:51:39.
Catharine Roth (added links) on 1 May 2021@22:46:18.


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