Sunday, June 10, 2018


Lord Bacchus

Aristophanes, Women at the Thesmophoria 987-1000 (tr. Jeffrey Henderson):
This way, Lord Bacchus crowned with ivy,
do personally be our leader:
and with revels I will hymn you,
who love the dance!
Euius, you Noisemaker,
son of Zeus and Semele,
who enjoy the dances
of Nymphs at their charming songs
as you ramble over the mountains—
Euius, Euius, euoi!—
striking up the dances all night long;
and all around you their cries
echo on Cithaeron,
and the mountains shady
with dark leaves and the rocky
valleys reverberate.
And all around you ivy tendrils
twine in lovely bloom.

ἡγοῦ δέ γ᾿ ὧδ᾿ αὐτὸς σύ,
κισσοφόρε Βακχεῖε
δέσποτ᾿· ἐγὼ δὲ κώμοις
σε φιλοχόροισι μέλψω.

Εὔιε, ὦ Διὸς σὺ        990
Βρόμιε, καὶ Σεμέλας παῖ,
χοροῖς τερπόμενος
κατ᾿ ὄρεα Νυμφᾶν
ἐρατοῖς ἐν ὕμνοις,
ὦ Εὔι᾿ Εὔι᾿, εὐοῖ,
<παννύχιος> ἀναχορεύων.

ἀμφὶ δὲ σοὶ κτυπεῖται        995
Κιθαιρώνιος ἠχώ,
μελάμφυλλά τ᾿ ὄρη
δάσκια πετρώδεις
τε νάπαι βρέμονται·
κύκλῳ δὲ περί σε κισσὸς
εὐπέταλος ἕλικι θάλλει.        1000

990 Εὔιε, ὦ Διὸς σὺ Enger: εὔιον ὦ Διόνυσε R
994 suppl. Coulon (ἡδόμενος Austin)
Henderson translates φιλοχόροισι (989) as if it modifies σε, although of course it modifies κώμοις.

Benjamin Bickley Rogers' version:
Come, the Lord of wine and pleasure,
Evoi, Bacchus, lead us thou!
Yea, for Thee we adore!
Child of Semele, thee
With thy glittering ivy-wreaths,
Thee with music and song
Ever and ever we praise.
Thee with thy wood-nymphs delightedly singing,
    Evoi! Evoi! Evoi!
Over the joyous hills the sweet strange melody ringing.
    Hark! Cithaeron resounds,
    Pleased the notes to prolong;
    Hark! the bosky ravines
    And the wild slopes thunder and roar,
    Volleying back the song.
    Round thee the ivy fair
    With delicate tendril twines.

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