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Headword: Εἰμί
Adler number: epsiloniota,152
Translated headword: I am
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] I exist.[1]
This does not have a future [sense];[2] but of εἶμι , [meaning] I proceed, the plurals and the duals [are written] with an iota: ἴμεν , ἴτε .[3]
Homer [writes]: "for I am going to the limits of the fruitful earth to see [Ocean et al.]"[4]
Ajax says: "but I am going to the bathing-places and the coastal meadows, so that when I have purified my stains I can escape the heavy wrath of the goddess".[5]
Greek Original:
Εἰμί: ὑπάρχω. τοῦτο μέλλοντα οὐκ ἔχει: τοῦ δὲ εἶμι, τὸ πορεύομαι, τὰ πληθυντικὰ διὰ τοῦ ι καὶ τὰ δυϊκά: ἴμεν, ἴτε. Ὅμηρος: εἶμι γὰρ ὀψομένη πολυφόρβου πείρατα γαίης. Αἴας φησίν: ἀλλ' εἶμι πρός τε λουτρὰ καὶ παρακτίους λειμῶνας, ὡς ἂν λύμαθ' ἁγνίσας ἐμά, μῆνιν βαρεῖαν ἐξαλεύσωμαι θεᾶς.
[1] Same glossed in other lexica, beginning with Hesychius epsilon957 (where Latte claims the headword as quoted from Homer, Iliad 1.186); and cf. Choeroboscus in Anecdota Oxoniensia 2.210.32, 211.18. See also epsiloniota 158, eta 568, and cf. omicron 407.
[2] This puzzling statement perhaps distinguishes εἰμί "be", where the present tense has only the usual variety of present reference, from εἶμι "go", where the present tense can refer to the future (as the following quotations illustrate).
[3] cf. Choeroboscus in Grammatici Graeci, 333.17, 362.10. For this verb see already epsiloniota 151.
[4] Homer, Iliad 14.200 (web address 1).
[5] Sophocles, Ajax 654-6 (web address 2); cf. epsilon 4028.
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; epic; religion; tragedy
Translated by: David Whitehead on 19 August 2005@09:41:18.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (augmented notes, added links, set status) on 23 August 2005@13:21:34.
David Whitehead (typo) on 24 August 2005@03:02:32.
David Whitehead (tweaking) on 25 November 2012@08:44:01.
Catharine Roth (upgraded links) on 27 December 2012@17:59:10.
David Whitehead on 27 January 2014@09:49:24.
David Whitehead on 22 April 2016@03:51:53.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 29 June 2016@10:25:29.


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