Friday, April 11, 2014


A Night Owl

Philostratus, Lives of the Sophists 1.21 (on Scopelian; tr. Wilmer Cave Wright, with her note):
During the daytime he did not work much, but he was the most sleepless of men, and hence he used to say: "O Night, thy share of wisdom is greater than that of the other gods!"2 and he made her the collaborator in his studies. Indeed it is said that he used to work continuously from evening until dawn.

2 Menander, frag. 199 Meineke; Scopelian adapted the line by substituting wisdom for love.

τὸν μεθ᾽ ἡμέραν καιρὸν ἧττον ἐσπούδαζεν, ἀυπνότατος δ᾽ ἀνθρώπων γενόμενος "ὦ νύξ," ἔλεγε "σὺ γὰρ δὴ πλεῖστον σοφίας μετέχεις μέρος θεῶν," ξυνεργὸν δὲ αὐτὴν ἐποιεῖτο τῶν ἑαυτοῦ φροντισμάτων. λέγεται γοῦν καὶ ἐς ὄρθρον ἀποτεῖναι σπουδάζων ἀπὸ ἑσπέρας.

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