Wednesday, December 09, 2020



Aeschylus, Seven Against Thebes. Edited with an Introduction and Commentary by G.O. Hutchinson (1985; rpt. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1999), p. 150 (commentary on lines 656f.):
The Greeks would seem to have wept freely, but also to have accepted that weeping was unmanly. Archil. fr. 13, Protag. B 9, Pl. Phd. 117D-E, are particularly revealing passages.
Archilochus, fragment 13 (tr. Richmond Lattimore):
I will make nothing better by crying, I will make nothing
    worse by giving myself what entertainment I can.

οὔτε τι γὰρ κλαίων ἰήσομαι, οὐτε κάκιον
    θήσω τερπωλὰς καὶ θαλίας ἐφέπων.
Protagoras, fragment B 9 Diels (tr. Kathleen Freeman):
When his sons, who were fine young men, died within eight days, he (Pericles) bore it without mourning. For he held on to his serenity, from which every day he derived great benefit in happiness, freedom from suffering, and honour in the people's eyes—for all who saw him bearing his griefs valiantly thought him great-souled and brave and superior to themselves, well knowing their own helplessness in such a calamity.

τῶν γὰρ υἱέων νεηνιῶν ὄντων καὶ καλῶν, ἐν ὀκτὼ δὲ ταῖς πάσηισιν ἡμέρηισιν ἀποθανόντων νηπενθέως ἀνέτλη· εὐδίης γὰρ εἴχετο, ἐξ ἧς πολλὸν ὤνητο κατὰ πᾶσαν ἡμέρην εἰς εὐποτμίην καὶ ἀνωδυνίην καὶ τὴν ἐν τοῖς πολλοῖσι δόξαν· πᾶς γάρ τίς μιν ὁρῶν τὰ ἑαυτοῦ πένθεα ἐρρωμένως φέροντα, μεγαλόφρονά τε καὶ ἀνδρεῖον ἐδόκει εἶναι καὶ ἑαυτοῦ κρείσσω, κάρτα εἰδὼς τὴν ἑαυτοῦ ἐν τοιοῖσδε πράγμασιν ἀμηχανίην.
Plato, Phaedo 117 D-E (tr. Harold North Fowler):
Crito had got up and gone away even before I did, because he could not restrain his tears. But Apollodorus, who had been weeping all the time before, then wailed aloud in his grief and made us all break down, except Socrates himself. But he said, "What conduct is this, you strange men! I sent the women away chiefly for this very reason, that they might not behave in this absurd way; for I have heard that it is best to die in silence. Keep quiet and be brave." Then we were ashamed and controlled our tears.

ὁ δὲ Κρίτων ἔτι πρότερος ἐμοῦ, ἐπειδὴ οὐχ οἷός τ᾽ ἦν κατέχειν τὰ δάκρυα, ἐξανέστη. Ἀπολλόδωρος δὲ καὶ ἐν τῷ ἔμπροσθεν χρόνῳ οὐδὲν ἐπαύετο δακρύων, καὶ δὴ καὶ τότε ἀναβρυχησάμενος κλάων καὶ ἀγανακτῶν οὐδένα ὅντινα οὐ κατέκλασε τῶν παρόντων πλήν γε αὐτοῦ Σωκράτους. ἐκεῖνος δέ, 'οἷα, ἔφη, ποιεῖτε, ὦ θαυμάσιοι. ἐγὼ μέντοι οὐχ ἥκιστα τούτου ἕνεκα τὰς γυναῖκας ἀπέπεμψα, ἵνα μὴ τοιαῦτα πλημμελοῖεν· καὶ γὰρ ἀκήκοα ὅτι ἐν εὐφημίᾳ χρὴ τελευτᾶν. ἀλλ᾽ ἡσυχίαν τε ἄγετε καὶ καρτερεῖτε.' καὶ ἡμεῖς ἀκούσαντες ᾐσχύνθημέν τε καὶ ἐπέσχομεν τοῦ δακρύειν.
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