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Headword: Μιαρὰ κεφαλή
Adler number: mu,1025
Translated headword: foul head
Vetting Status: high
[sc. A phrase] just like "beloved head".[1] From the leading part of the body, it means the [sc. whole] man, as in Homer: "Teucer, beloved head".[2] Also, "for such a head".[3] And in Demosthenes: "and these, o foul head".[4] And elsewhere: "o wretch and parricide and house-breaker!" And he answers: "say the same things of me again, and more. Do you know that I take pleasure in being much abused?".[5]
Aelian [writes][6]: "it is not right for a good man or a god to receive gifts from someone defiled. Therefore all the great labor that impious men spend upon the gods is in vain, but that of the pious is most profitable to them all". Plato says [this].[7]
Greek Original:
Μιαρὰ κεφαλή: ὥσπερ φίλη κεφαλή. ἐκ τοῦ ἡγεμονικοῦ μέρους τοῦ σώματος δηλοῖ τὸν ἄνδρα, παραπλησίως Ὁμήρῳ: Τεῦκρε, φίλη κεφαλή. καί, τοίην γὰρ κεφαλήν. καὶ παρὰ Δημοσθένει: καὶ ταῦτ', ὦ μιαρὰ κεφαλή. καὶ αὖθις: ὦ μιαρὲ καὶ πατραλοία καὶ τοιχωρύχε. ὁ δέ φησιν: αὖθις μετὰ ταῦτα καὶ πλείω λέγε. ἆρ' οἶσθ' ὅτι χαίρω πόλλ' ἀκούων κακά; Αἰλιανός: παρὰ δὲ μιαροῦ δῶρα οὔτε ἄνδρα ἀγαθὸν οὔτε θεὸν ἔστι ποτὲ τό γε ὀρθὸν δέχεσθαι. μάτην οὖν περὶ θεῶν ὁ πολύς ἐστι πόνος τοῖς ἀνοσίοις, τοῖς δὲ ὁσίοις εὐκαιρότατος. Πλάτων φησί.
Apart from the quotations in the entry, the headword phrase is also attested in Aristophanes, Acharnians 285 (web address 1); the entry derives from the corresponding scholia.
[1] phi 324.
[2] Homer, Iliad 8.281 (web address 2).
[3] Homer, Odyssey 1.343 and 11.549 (web addresses 3 and 4).
[4] Demosthenes 21.117, cf. 135 and 195 (web addresses 5 and 6); also 18.153.
[5] Aristophanes, Clouds 1327-1329 (web address 7); cf. lambda 59.
[6] No: the quotation that follows is from Plato (see next note). Gaisford suggested that the mention of Aelian is displaced from mu 1027.
[7] Plato, Laws 4.716E-717A (web address 8).
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2,
Web address 3,
Web address 4,
Web address 5,
Web address 6,
Web address 7,
Web address 8
Keywords: comedy; definition; epic; ethics; imagery; philosophy; religion; rhetoric
Translated by: Ioannis Doukas on 16 July 2009@09:08:29.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (augmented notes and keywords; tweaks and cosmetics) on 17 July 2009@04:50:46.
David Whitehead (another x-ref) on 17 July 2009@04:52:11.
David Whitehead on 22 May 2013@07:22:56.


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