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Headword: Ψιλός
Adler number: psi,105
Translated headword: bare, light-armed
Vetting Status: high
It is a very low-born military unit, which is sent out in front of the army, [consisting of soldiers] without armor [and] without weapons; and if a tumult arises, that rank is the first to be destroyed. "Wretched me! I will serve as a light-armed soldier." He has said this, because he has been stripped.[1]
But Eunapius says ψιλός like nimble. The Romans call these ranks auxilia, thus indicating their swiftness in [providing] assistance and their ease of movement.[2]
And tragedy [also uses the word]: "again I will go back into you [ = the cave] naked, not having nourishment."[3]
There is also the word ψιλή , [meaning something feminine that is] weak.
Greek Original:
Ψιλός: τάξις ἐστὶν ἀγεννεστάτη, ἥ τις προβάλλεται ἔμπροσθεν τοῦ στρατοπέδου γυμνῶν ἀόπλων: καὶ ἐὰν ταραχὴ γένηται, ἐκείνη πρώτη ἀναιρεῖται. οἴμοι κακοδαίμων: ψιλὸς αὖ στρατεύσομαι. τοῦτο δὲ εἴρηκε, διότι ἐψίλωτο. Εὐνάπιος δὲ λέγει ψιλὸν δὲ οἷον κοῦφον. αὐξίλια δὲ οἱ Ῥωμαῖοι τὰ τέλη ταῦτα προσαγορεύουσι, τὸ τῆς βοηθείας ὀξὺ καὶ παρὰ τὰς χρείας εὐκίνητον οὕτω προσαγορεύοντες. καὶ ἡ τραγῳδία: αὖθις αὖ πάλιν εἴσειμι πρὸς σὲ ψιλός, οὐκ ἔχων τροφήν. λέγεται καὶ Ψιλή, ἡ ἀσθενής.
[1] Aristophanes, Thesmophoriazusae 232 (web address 1), with scholion. For the headword, cf. psi 104, psi 106.
[2] Eunapius fr.105 FHG (4.55); cf. alpha 4453.
[3] Sophocles, Philoctetes 952-3 (web address 2); cf. alpha 4430.
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: clothing; comedy; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; ethics; food; historiography; military affairs; tragedy
Translated by: Catharine Roth on 16 January 2006@12:37:39.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (tweaked and augmented tr; augmented keywords; cosmetics) on 17 January 2006@07:47:58.
David Whitehead on 6 November 2013@06:52:53.


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