Monday, February 27, 2017


Epitaph of Timocritus

Inscriptiones Graecae IX,1², fasc. 2 = Inscriptiones Acarnaniae, ed. G. Klaffenbach, p. 23, no. 298 (Thyrrheum in Acarnania, probably 3rd century B.C.; tr. Douglas E. Gerber):
Stranger, the dust that brings glory to men conceals here in its bosom Timocritus, honoured by the Muses. For when the brave man came into conflict with the sons of the Aetolians on behalf of his homeland, it was his desire either to be victorious or to die. He fell among the front ranks and left his father with pain beyond measure, but he did not lose sight of his noble upbringing. Taking to heart the Spartan declaration of Tyrtaeus, he chose valour ahead of life.

Τὸμ Μούσαις, ὦ ξεῖνε, τετιμένον ἐνθάδε κρύπτει
    Τιμόκριτογ κόλπωι κυδιάνειρα κόνις.
Αἰτωλῶν γὰρ παισὶ πάτρας ὕπερ εἰς ἔριν ἐλθὼν
    ὡγαθὸς ἢ νικᾶν ἤθελε<ν> ἢ τεθνάναι·
πίπτει δ᾿ ἐμ προμάχοισι λιπὼμ πατρὶ μύριον ἄλγος,        5
    ἀλλὰ τὰ παιδείας οὐκ ἀπέκρυπτε καλά·
Τυρταίου δὲ Λάκαιναν ἐνὶ στέρνοισι φυλάσσων
    ῥῆσιν τὰν ἀρετὰν εἵλετο πρόσθε βίου.

4 suppl. Werner Peek
In line 2, note terminal γ for ν before initial κ (cf. the pronunciation of ἀνάγκη). Similarly terminal μ for ν before initial μ in line 1. Klaffenbach notes these spellings on p. 97.

See Paul Friedländer, "A New Epigram by Damagetus," American Journal of Philology 63.1 (1942) 78-82. I haven't seen Emilio Fernández Galiano, ed., Posidipo de Pela (Madrid: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Instituto de Filología, 1987), where I think this is fragment XXXII (among the dubia), or Elisa Criveller, "Epigrammi funerari di Etolia e Acarnania tra III e II sec. a.C.," in Claudia Antonetti, ed., Lo spazio ionico e le comunità della Grecia nord-occidentale: territorio, società e istituzioni. Atti del convegno internazionale, Venezia, 7-9 gennaio 2010 (Pisa: Edizioni ETS, 2010 = Diabaseis, 1), pp. 429-457 (at 431-435).

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