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Headword: Ναὶ μὰ τόν
Adler number: nu,98
Translated headword: yes by the ...
Vetting Status: high
"Yes by my shriveled hide", that is skin. Callimachus in Hecale [sc. uses this phrase. He goes on]: "yes by this tree, dry though it is."[1] The ancients were not inclined to swear by the gods, but by random things. Thus also Menander [writes]: "I call to witness this Apollo and the doors."[2] And Homer [writes]: "yes by this staff."[3] And Hekale said, "Yes by the ..." and does not add the [name of] the god. This [form of] speech leads to piety.
[Ναι μὰ τάς ] also [belongs] to this pattern and custom, as if one should say, "by the Graces."[4]
Greek Original:
Ναὶ μὰ τόν: ναὶ μὰ τὸ ῥικνὸν σῦφαρ ἐμόν, ὅ ἐστι δέρμα. Καλλίμαχος ἐν Ἑκάλῃ. ναὶ τοῦτο δένδρεον αὖον ἐόν περ. οἱ ἀρχαῖοι οὐ προπετῶς κατὰ τῶν θεῶν ὤμνυον, ἀλλὰ κατὰ τῶν προστυγχανόντων: ὡς καὶ Μένανδρος: μαρτύρομαι τὸν Ἀπόλλω τοῦτον καὶ τὰς θύρας. καὶ Ὅμηρος: ναὶ μὰ τόδε σκῆπτρον. καὶ Ἑκάλη εἶπε, ναὶ μὰ τόν: καὶ οὐκέτι ἐπάγει τὸν θεόν. ῥυθμίζει δὲ ὁ λόγος πρὸς εὐσέβειαν. τοιούτου σχήματός τε καὶ ἤθους καὶ τὸ ναὶ μὰ τάς. ὡς εἴπερ εἴποι τις, μὰ τὰς Χάριτας.
cf. nu 96, nu 97.
[1] Callimachus, Hecale fr.260, lines 51-52, with comment from the scholia there; cf. scholion on Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 1.669 (and sigma 1694).
[2] Menander [the comic poet] fr. 740 Kock, 801 Koerte, now 884 K.-A.
[3] Homer, Iliad 1.234; cf. mu 1.
[4] Here the expression is in the feminine plural.
Keywords: comedy; daily life; epic; imagery; poetry; religion; women
Translated by: Catharine Roth on 13 December 2003@22:18:44.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (augmented notes and keywords; cosmetics) on 16 December 2003@06:40:15.
David Whitehead (tweaking) on 5 June 2013@05:23:05.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 8 September 2014@22:54:36.
David Whitehead on 24 December 2014@07:59:52.
David Whitehead on 31 December 2014@06:05:59.


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