Tuesday, November 22, 2022


Paean to Health

Ariphron, Paian to Hygieia, tr. William D. Furley and Jan Maarten Bremer, Greek Hymns, Vol. I: The Texts in Translation (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2001), p. 224:
Health, most cherished of gods for men, with you
I pray to live the remainder of my life, and you be kind to me!
If there is any joy in wealth or children
or in kingly power which elevates men to gods, or in desires
which we pursue with all the subterfuge of Aphrodite,
or if the gods grant humans any other pleasures
or relief from miseries,
in your presence, blessed Health,
they thrive and shine, endowed with charm.
But without you no one's life is happy.
The Greek, from Furley and Bremer, Vol. II: Greek Texts and Commentary, pp. 175-176:
Ὑγεία βροτοῖσι πρεσβίστα μακάρων, μετὰ σεῦ
ναίοιμι τὸ λειπόμενον βιοτᾶς, σὺ δέ μοι πρόφρων ξυνείης.
εἰ γάρ τις ἢ πλούτου χάρις ἢ τεκέων
ἢ τᾶς ἰσοδαίμονος ἀνθρώποις βασιληΐδος ἀρχᾶς ἢ πόθων
οὓς κρυφίοις Ἀφροδίτας ἕρκεσιν θηρεύομεν,
ἢ εἴ τις ἄλλα θεόθεν ἀνθρώποισι τέρψις ἢ πόνων
ἀμπνοὰ πέφανται,
μετὰ σεῖο, μάκαιρ' Ὑγίεια,
τέθαλε καὶ λάμπει Χαρίτων ὀάροις.
σέθεν δὲ χωρὶς οὔτις εὐδαίμων ἔφυ.
Besides Furley and Bremer, Vol. I, pp. 224-227, and Vol. II, pp. 175-180, and the works there cited, see now Pauline A. LeVen, The Many-Headed Muse: Tradition and Innovation in Late Classical Greek Lyric Poetry (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014), pp. 277-282.

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