Monday, February 01, 2021
A Manly Man
Another man got up and made precisely the opposite proposal. He was not handsome to look at but a brave man, one who rarely had anything to do with the city or the market circle, a man who farmed with his own hands, the sort who alone keep the land from destruction, yet clever enough to grapple in argument when he wanted: he has lived a life of integrity, above reproach.Archilochus, fragment 114 (tr. Douglas E. Gerber):
ἄλλος δ' ἀναστὰς ἔλεγε τῷδ' ἐναντία,
μορφῇ μὲν οὐκ εὐωπός, ἀνδρεῖος δ' ἀνήρ,
ὀλιγάκις ἄστυ κἀγορᾶς χραίνων κύκλον,
αὐτουργός, οἵπερ καὶ μόνοι σῴζουσι γῆν.
ξυνετὸς δέ χωρεῖν ὁμόσε τοῖς λόγοις θέλων,
ἀκέραιος ἀνεπίπληκτον ἠσκηκὼς βίον.
I have no liking for a general who is tall, walks with a swaggering gait, takes pride in his curls, and is partly shaven. Let mine be one who is short, has a bent look about the shins, stands firmly on his feet, and is full of courage.
οὐ φιλέω μέγαν στρατηγὸν οὐδὲ διαπεπλιγμένον
οὐδὲ βοστρύχοισι γαῦρον οὐδ᾿ ὑπεξυρημένον,
ἀλλά μοι σμικρός τις εἴη καὶ περὶ κνήμας ἰδεῖν
ῥοικός, ἀσφαλέως βεβηκὼς ποσσί, καρδίης πλέως.