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Headword: Κυροῖ
Adler number: kappa,2783
Translated headword: might happen upon
Vetting Status: high
"And he asked what sort of business he had happened upon."[1] The [verb] κυρῶ ['I happen upon'] has the perispomenon in normal usage and among the Attic [writers]. But in the optatives the Attic [writers] make it barytone, with lengthening of the 'u', saying κύροι instead of κυροίη . But it is also attested instead of the indicative κυρεῖ in Sophocles.
Greek Original:
Κυροῖ: κἀνήρετ' ἐν τῷ πράγματος κυροῖ ποτε. τὸ κυρῶ περισπωμένως ἡ συνήθεια καὶ Ἀττικοί. ἐν δὲ τοῖς εὐκτικοῖς βαρύνουσιν αὐτὸ Ἀττικοὶ μετὰ ἐκτάσεως τοῦ υ, κύροι λέγοντες, ἀντὶ τοῦ κυροίη. κεῖται δὲ καὶ ἀντὶ τοῦ κυρεῖ ὁριστικοῦ παρὰ Σοφοκλεῖ.
The headword is present optative active, third person singular, of κυρέω ('happen upon'). It is apparently drawn from the quotation given, although there it appears in reported speech in secondary sequence, which in English we do not usually translate with 'might' or 'could', etc. The author(s) of the commentary that follows the quotation, writing in a time in which the optative is becoming defunct, seem(s) not to have recognized this usage and take(s) the verb as indicative.
[1] Sophocles, Ajax 314 (web address 1), with comments from the scholia.
Associated internet address:
Web address 1
Keywords: dialects, grammar, and etymology; poetry; tragedy
Translated by: William Hutton on 6 March 2008@03:32:20.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (cosmetics) on 6 March 2008@05:46:19.
David Whitehead (tweaking) on 25 March 2013@09:33:10.


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