Tuesday, November 13, 2007


An Ancient Form of Insult

To take the normally masculine termination of a name and make it feminine is an insult. There are probably lots of examples, but I can think of only the following.

Homer, Iliad 2.235 (tr. W. Leaf):
Ye women of Achaia and men no more...

Ἀχαιΐδες οὐκέτ᾽ Ἀχαιοὶ...
Vergil, Aeneid 9.617 (tr. H. Rushton Fairclough):
O ye Phrygian women, indeed!—for Phrygian men are ye not...

o vere Phrygiae, neque enim Phryges...
Cicero, On the Nature of the Gods 1.34.93:
He always used to call Chrysippus Chrysippa.

Chrysippum numquam nisi Chrysippam vocabat.

<< Home
Newer›  ‹Older

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?