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Headword: Χοιρῖναι
Adler number: chi,596
Translated headword: mussels
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] shells from the sea, which they also [or: even] used to use in the jurycourts in Athens.
Also the bristle of the hog.[1]
"Thus do I crave to go round the tablets with a shell."[2]
Greek Original:
Χοιρῖναι: κόγχαι θαλάσσιαι, αἷς καὶ ἐν τοῖς δικαστηρίοις ἐχρῶντο Ἀθήνησι. καὶ ἡ θρὶξ τοῦ χοίρου. οὕτω κιττῶμαι διὰ τῶν σανίδων μετὰ χοιρίνης περιελθεῖν.
Improbable as it might seem, there does appear to be adequate evidence for the use of mussel-shells (as well as the better-known pebbles: psi 85) by Athenian jurors in the C5 BCE. (Bronze voting-disks, in pairs, are not attested until the C4.) Besides the line quoted here see also Wasps 333 (web address 3) and Knights 1332 (web address 4).
[1] No: see LSJ s.v. (web address 1).
[2] Aristophanes, Wasps 349 (web address 2); cf. kappa 1688, end.
Aristophanes, Wasps, edited with introduction and commentary by Douglas MacDowell (Oxford 1971) 142-3
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2,
Web address 3,
Web address 4
Keywords: comedy; daily life; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; geography; law; science and technology; zoology
Translated by: David Whitehead on 26 November 2001@05:13:41.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (augmented note) on 6 September 2002@04:13:24.
William Hutton (added links and keywords, set status) on 14 July 2003@05:09:36.
David Whitehead (corrected a reference; cosmetics) on 14 July 2003@05:20:34.
David Whitehead on 26 February 2013@05:29:00.
David Whitehead on 14 November 2013@05:35:11.


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