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Headword: *di/khs
Adler number: delta,1093
Translated headword: of justice
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] of righteousness, or of vengeance.[1]
"We shall come to obtain justice from men who are unholy and perjurers."[2]
"The ancients[3] used to define justice as "direct" and "impartial" and "inflexible". And this [image] is celebrated by most [poets], but it is also a result of necessity, for this is the nature of the Just. Hesiod[4] says, on the other hand, that justice is virgin and uncorrupted not only in other respects, but especially in regard to the intercourse of love: by this enigmatic representation, he means that we are not to cheat justice, neither if we are persuaded by other reasons, nor if we do so because we are led astray by love. Moreover, [the poet] says that she [the goddess] goes after "those who care for arrogance and wicked actions",[5] to punish them. For those who respect her - he says - the Earth and even their own family burst with goods, and the sea supplies to them, and very lavishly, all of the things it brings forth and nurtures. I also hear that justice is sitting near to the very throne of Zeus[6] and shares in all of his most noble purposes. And Homer[7] celebrates her power as being great, and says that the god [sc. Zeus] grows angry against those who held her in little honour; she pours down [on them] violent rains and thrusts against them torrents flowing with the violence of winter; she destroys their cities and works and livestock. This is the vengeance those who attend the actions of arrogance and recklessness are punished with; [who chooses a] more proper [behaviour, conversely]... and such other things.
Greek Original:
*di/khs: dikaiosu/nhs, h)\ timwri/as. h(/comen komiou/menoi par' a)ndrw=n a)nosi/wn kai\ yeudo/rkwn di/kas. o(/ti th\n di/khn fasi\n oi( palaioi\ eu)qei=a/n te ei)=nai kai\ a)klinh= kai\ a)/trepton. kai\ tou=to a)/|dousi me\n plei=stoi, h)/dh de\ kai\ a)na/gkh: fu/sin ga\r dh/pou to\ di/kaion toiau/thn ei)/lhxen. *(hsi/odos de\ au)th\n le/gei kai\ parqe/non kai\ a)dia/fqoron, th=| te a)/llh| kai\ me/ntoi kai\ u(p' eu)nh=s a)frodisi/ou, ai)nitto/menos o(/ti mh\ xrh\ dolou=n to\ di/kaion, mh/te a)/llws peisqe/nta mh/te le/xei paratrape/nta. fhsi\ de\ kai\ metie/nai au)th\n timwroume/nhn tou/tous, oi(=sper ou)=n u(/bris me/mhle kakh\ kai\ sxe/tlia e)/rga. toi=s ge mh\n e)kei/nhn se/bousi th/n te gh=n kai\ ta\ oi)kei=a bru/ein fhsi\n a)gaqa\ kai\ th\n qa/lattan xorhgei=n o(/sa ti/ktei kai\ tre/fei ma/l' a)fqo/nws. a)kou/w de\ au)th\n kai\ par' au)tou= *dio\s kaqh=sqai qro/nw| kai\ koinwno\n tw=n a)ri/stwn bouleuma/twn ei)=nai. kai\ *(/omhros de\ me/ga au)th=s to\ kra/tos u(mnei= kai\ le/gei toi=s a)tima/zousin au)th\n mhniei=n to\n qeo\n kai\ la/brous katantlei=n u(etou\s au)th\n kai\ xeima/rrous e)p' au)tou\s w)qei=sqai kai\ a)fani/zein po/leis au)tw=n kai\ e)/rga kai\ poi/mnas. kai\ tau/th| kola/zesqai th=| timwri/a| u(/brews kai\ a)tasqali/as e)/rga u(pome/nontas prepwde/stera kai\ e(/tera a)/tta.
The headword is the genitive singular of the noun di/kh (delta 1089, delta 1090, etc.), evidently quoted from somewhere, although not from either of the quotations given; perhaps from commentary to Aristophanes, Clouds 764 and/or 874 and/or 904, where the headword occurs and where one or the other of the first two glosses given here is used in various scholia.
[1] = Synagoge delta289, Photius delta602 Theodoridis. The noun dikaiosu/nh may also be translated as "justice", but it denotes justice as a virtue, emphasizing, like many others -su/nh-words, one's "ability" to be just and upright. Hence "righteousness" in the translation here. For the gloss timwri/as ('vengeance') cf. Etymologicum Magnum 276.8.
[2] Quotation (via the Excerpta Constantiniana, Adler supposes) unidentifiable. Poetry? The words seem to hint at an iambic rhythm, although it is not possible to ascribe them to "real" trimeters (h(/komen komiou/menoi would include a broken anapaest, par'a)ndrw=n - di/kas a substitution with dactyl in the second foot, which contains no anceps). But the quotation might have been altered in some way, as often in the Suda. Perhaps a distant recollection of Libanius, Oration 4.2.36: ou) kako\n poih/sontes e(te/rous h(/komen, a)ll' a(\ te a)fh|re/qemen komiou/menoi w(=n te h)dikh/meqa di/kas a)/neu o(/plwn proslhyo/menoi ('we have come not to do others ill, but to obtain what we were deprived of and to receive justice without arms for the injustices committed against us.')
[3] The remainder of this entry = Aelian fr. 28 Domingo-Forasté (25 Hercher).
[4] cf. Hesiod, Works and Days 256 (web address 1). Aelian's words summarize the comparison between the just and unjust cities in Hesiod's text, which M.L. West has recognized as a Semitic pattern, both in content and in style (see West [below] on lines 225-247; cf. LXX Leviticus 26, Deuteronomy 28). For the idea that justice is rewarded by the fertility of earth see Homer, Odyssey 19.109ff.; further parallels are Aeschylus, Supplices 627-29, Eumenides 937-87; Sophocles, Oedipus Rex 269-71. The notion is also to be seen in the accounts concerning the Golden Age; conversely, ancient writers very often associate a violation of justice's rules with something amiss in the normal functioning of natural elements.
[5] Hesiod, Works and Days 238.
[6] The image of justice as a girl sitting by the throne of her father Zeus is developed in Aeschylus' Aitnaiai (cf. fr. 530 Mette-282 Lloyd-Jones). See also Solon 4.15ff., where justice is silently observing human events both of the present and the past (sigw=sa su/noide ta\ gino/mena pro\ t'e)/onta; Orpheus fr. 23, very close to Hesiod's representation ([*di/khn] para\ to\n tou= *dio\s qro/non kaqhme/nhn pa/nta ta\ tw=n a)nqrw/pwn e)fora=n, "[justice] is seated by Zeus's throne and looks at all human events". For further discussion see West [below] on Hesiod, Works and Days 259.
[7] Homer, Iliad 16.388ff.
M.L. West, Hesiod, Works and Days, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1970
Associated internet address:
Web address 1
Keywords: chronology; daily life; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; epic; ethics; gender and sexuality; imagery; law; meter and music; mythology; poetry; religion; tragedy
Translated by: Antonella Ippolito on 1 June 2005@21:41:23.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (tweaks to translation; augmented notes and keywords; cosmetics) on 2 June 2005@04:30:15.
Antonella Ippolito (type) on 2 June 2005@11:51:14.
David Whitehead (more x-refs; more keywords; tweaking) on 11 July 2012@04:49:34.
Catharine Roth (upgraded link) on 24 August 2013@15:36:01.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 24 August 2013@15:37:32.
William Hutton (augmented and rearranged notes, tweaked translation) on 25 August 2013@02:53:59.
Catharine Roth (typo) on 25 August 2013@08:18:48.
Catharine Roth (updated reference in note 3) on 6 July 2014@01:04:13.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 14 November 2014@21:30:12.
David Whitehead (cosmetics) on 15 November 2014@11:04:47.
David Whitehead (coding) on 9 November 2015@09:56:37.
Catharine Roth (tweaked translation) on 26 August 2016@11:35:02.


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