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Headword: *mnhmei=on
Adler number: mu,1154
Translated headword: memorial
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] a tomb.
The orators[1] used the noun in application to a tomb and to a task and matter that one would remember.
Aelian says:[2] "[I hear that] a memorial of his punishment is still kept, exactly as a succession of evil".[3]
Greek Original:
*mnhmei=on: o( ta/fos. e)xrh/santo de\ tw=| o)no/mati oi( r(h/tores kai\ e)pi\ ta/fou kai\ tou= e)/rgou kai\ pra/gmatos ou(= mnhmoneu/oito a)/n tis. *ai)liano/s fhsi: fula/ttesqai/ te e)/ti mnhmei=on th=s timwri/as th=s e)kei/nou, kaqa/per ou)=n kakou= diadoxh/n.
In the Suda the headword noun, mnhmei=on, is used in the sense of a tomb in alpha 1935], sigma 182 (Alexander), mu 668] (Sulla) and pi 255 (Stesichorus); as a memorial of valor in tau 791. See also eta 555] and relevant entries in Hesychius (s.vv. gw=os, h(rw=|on, tu/mbos), and Etymologicum Gudianum (s.vv. ta/fos, tu/mbos). According to Aelius Dionysius (s.v. mnh=ma), the noun mnh=ma is confined to the meaning of tomb, whereas the noun mnhmei=on denotes more generally the memorial, the reminder, as in Thucydides (web address 1). See also Hesychius (s.v. mnhmei=a) and Aeschylus, Seven against Thebes 49 (web address 2).
[1] For the use of the noun mnhmei=on in oratory see e.g. Isocrates 5.112 (web address 3), Demosthenes 45.79 (web address 4) and Lycurgus, Against Leocrates 147 (web address 5).
[2] Claudius Aelianus (c. AD 170-235), Roman author and teacher of rhetoric at Rome (alphaiota 178). He was born at Praeneste, offspring of freedmen, and flourished under the reign of Septimius Severus (AD 192-211). He wrote in Greek and was admired for it; according to Philostratus, (Lives of the Sophists 624-5), "he wrote Attic as correctly as the Athenians in the interior of Attica" (trans. Wright: see below). Aelian's major works are De natura animalium, a collection, in 17 books, of brief and curious stories of natural history, and Varia Historia a miscellany of anecdotes, lists, maxims and descriptions, in 14 books. Aelian is quoted on no fewer than 247 occasions in the Suda; these quotations include references to two other works, *Peri\ *Pronoi/as and *Peri\ qei/wn e)nargei/wn. Also attributed to him is a collection of fictitious letters, the so-called Epistulae Rusticae, supposedly addressed to and by Attic farmers.
[3] Aelian fr. 40c Domingo-Forasté (37 Hercher). It is an anecdote according to which Artaxerxes III of Persia (reigned 358-338), also known as Ochus, after his conquest of Egypt in 343, demanded to dine off Apis, the bull-deity, the most important of the sacred animals of Egypt (see alpha 3201). One of Ochus' friends kicked the bull, as a result of which his foot gangrened and he eventually died -- and all his descendants carried on themselves a reminder of this punishment: a swollen foot and a difficulty at walking. For Artaxerxes III, see Diodorus Siculus 15.93, 16.40-52, 17.5.
Hercher R., Claudii Aeliani de natura animalium libri xvii, varia historia, epistolae, fragmenta, two volumes, Leipzig 1864-6
Philostratus, Lives of the Sophists & Eunapius Lives of Philosophers, with an English translation by Wilmer Cave Wright, Cambridge, Massachusetts/London 1921.
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2,
Web address 3,
Web address 4,
Web address 5
Keywords: aetiology; biography; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; ethics; historiography; history; religion; rhetoric
Translated by: Ioannis Doukas on 25 March 2007@18:59:00.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (added cross-references) on 25 March 2007@20:17:21.
David Whitehead (tweaked tr; more keywords; other tweaks and cosmetics) on 26 March 2007@03:09:53.
Catharine Roth (updated reference in note 3) on 18 April 2011@00:45:47.
David Whitehead on 24 May 2013@05:54:00.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 31 October 2014@23:46:55.
Catharine Roth (cosmeticules) on 18 March 2015@22:41:37.
Catharine Roth on 21 March 2015@22:24:45.
Catharine Roth (cosmeticule) on 11 September 2020@19:52:50.


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