Sunday, November 27, 2022


Sit Still and Listen

Homer, Iliad 2.198-206 (he = Odysseus; tr. Richmond Lattimore):
When he saw some man of the people who was shouting,
he would strike at him with his staff, and reprove him also:
"Excellency! Sit still and listen to what others tell you,
to those who are better men than you, you skulker and coward
and thing of no account whatever in battle or council.
Surely not all of us Achaians can be as kings here.
Lordship for many is no good thing. Let there be one ruler,
one king, to whom the son of devious-devising Kronos
gives the sceptre and right of judgment, to watch over his people."

ὃν δ' αὖ δήμου τ᾽ ἄνδρα ἴδοι βοόωντά τ' ἐφεύροι,
τὸν σκήπτρῳ ἐλάσασκεν ὁμοκλήσασκέ τε μύθῳ·
δαιμόνι' ἀτρέμας ἧσο καὶ ἄλλων μῦθον ἄκουε,        200
οἳ σέο φέρτεροί εἰσι, σὺ δ' ἀπτόλεμος καὶ ἄναλκις
οὔτέ ποτ' ἐν πολέμῳ ἐναρίθμιος οὔτ' ἐνὶ βουλῇ·
οὐ μέν πως πάντες βασιλεύσομεν ἐνθάδ' Ἀχαιοί·
οὐκ ἀγαθὸν πολυκοιρανίη· εἷς κοίρανος ἔστω,
εἷς βασιλεύς, ᾧ δῶκε Κρόνου πάϊς ἀγκυλομήτεω        205
σκῆπτρόν τ' ἠδὲ θέμιστας, ἵνά σφισι βουλεύῃσι.

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