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Headword: *ywlo/s
Adler number: psi,131
Translated headword: circumcised, erect, libidinous
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] he who lacks a [fore]skin; accent on the last syllable. Also [sc. attested is] a)kro/ywlos, [meaning] one who is a little bit thus.[1]
Or a shameful man, by extension from the body-part.
Aristophanes [writes]: "cuckoo: ywloi/ to the plain." Meaning we harvest the fields when the cuckoo is calling. But the Egyptians are said to be ywloi/, that is circumcised. So [Aristophanes] is saying that when the cuckoo calls, the ywloi/ used to go into the plain, that is those who have big genitals. Aristophanes in Birds [writes in full]: "this was truly that word: Cuckoo, ywloi/ to the plain."[2] And elsewhere: "you must become ywlo/s up to the myrtle." Meaning up to the head. Since the archons used to be crowned with myrtle wreaths; or [you must] cover up your genitals. You must become molgo/s. That is a thief of public property, one who milks out the common [property].[3]
Greek Original:
*ywlo/s: o( leipo/dermos, o)cuto/nws. kai\ a)kro/ywlos, o( e)pi\ braxu\ toiou=tos. h)\ o( a)sxh/mwn, kata\ pare/ktasin tou= mori/ou. *)aristofa/nhs: ko/kkuc: ywloi\ pedi/onde. a)nti\ tou= ko/kkugos krw/|zontos ta\ pedi/a qeri/zomen. oi( de\ *ai)gu/ptioi ywloi\ le/gontai ei)=nai, toute/sti peritetmhme/noi. fhsi\n ou)=n, o(/ti o(/tan o( ko/kkuc kokku/sh|, oi( ywloi\ h)/rxonto ei)s to\ pedi/on, toute/stin oi( mega/la ai)doi=a e)/xontes. *)aristofa/nhs *)/ornisi: tou=t' a)/r' e)kei=n' h)=n tou)=pos a)lhqw=s: ko/kku, ywloi\ pedi/onde. kai\ au)=qis: ywlo\n gene/sqai dei= se me/xri tou= murri/nou. a)nti\ tou= me/xri th=s kefalh=s. e)peidh\ oi( a)/rxontes murri/nh| e)stefanou=nto: h)\ a)pokekalu/fqai to\ ai)doi=on. molgo\n gene/sqai dei= se. toute/sti kle/pthn tw=n dhmosi/wn, e)came/lgonta ta\ koina/.
For this headword see generally J. Henderson, The Maculate Muse (New Haven 1975) 110-111 (#5, with ##4 and 6). As the Birds scholia show here, it could mean circumcised, but it was more idiomatically applied to a libidinous man whose penis was erect with the prepuce retracted.
[1] Entry thus far from Photius s.v.
[2] Aristophanes, Birds 507 (web address 1), with scholion.
[3] Aristophanes, Knights 963-4 (web address 2), with scholion; cf. mu 1191, mu 1438, psi 130.
Aristophanes, Birds, edited with introduction and commentary by Nan Dunbar (Oxford 1995) 347
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: botany; comedy; constitution; definition; economics; ethics; gender and sexuality; geography; imagery; politics
Translated by: Catharine Roth on 16 January 2006@21:24:02.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (supplied headwords and missing note number; tweaked tr; augmented notes and keywords; added bibliography) on 17 January 2006@03:30:33.
David Whitehead (more keywords; tweaking) on 6 November 2013@08:52:00.


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