Saturday, August 25, 2012


Mangled Greek

Ruskin Today. Chosen and Annotated by Kenneth Clark (London: Penguin Books, 1982; rpt. 1988), p. 161, an excerpt from Ruskin's Arata Pentelici, Lecture II, § 29:
Play with them, or love them, or fear them, or worship them. The cat may become the goddess Pasht, and the mouse, in the hand of a sculptured king, enforce his enduring words 'ἐς ἐμέ τις δρέων εὐδεβης ἔγτω;' but the great mimetic instinct underlies all such purpose; and is zooplastic,—life-shaping,—alike in the reverent and the impious....
The Greek is gibberish in this Penguin Books anthology. You can correct it yourself, or a look at any 19th century edition of Ruskin will show that it is a mistake for
ἐς ἐμέ τις ὁρέων εὐσεβὴς ἔστω.
Ruskin is quoting Herodotus 2.141.6. The Greek means "Let the one looking at me be reverent."


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