Basil Lanneau Gildersleeve, "Brief Mention," American Journal of Philology
32.4 (1911) 478-487 (at 480-481):
Quoting Latin is out of fashion, quoting Greek quite obsolete,
or it might be maintained that no Greek poet of the same bulk
of authorship lends himself so readily to quotation as Pindar;
and last summer, being off on a holiday and separated from all
Greek books except a text of Pindar, I amused myself with
constructing a Pindaric Calendar after the fashion of the familiar
Shakespeare Calendar, and had no difficulty in finding three
hundred and sixty-five quotations—one for each day of the year.
To be sure, there are recurrences of thought. There are gods
enough for Sundays and Natures enough for week ends, for Phya
looms in Pindar as Phye did in the procession of Peisistratos;
but for all that there are pat mottoes for every phase of modern
life and for all the emergencies of modern politics. Commonplaces? Yes, there are commonplaces, but do we not all live by
commonplaces? What gave 'good old Mantuan' his vogue for
two centuries except his copy-book sentences?
'Semel insanivimus omnes' has become as familiar a quotation as any in the
whole list of household words, though few of us stop at 'semel'.
But the famous 'Carmelite', whom Professor MUSTARD has
brought back to life for most of us, is as hopelessly 'homely'
as Pindar is hopelessly unapproachable in his distinction. What
if Pindar does repeat himself in thought? There is wonderful
variety in the phrasing, for he is as proud of his ποικιλία as Plato
was of his. However, that is an old story, broidered by all
the commentators on Pindar. But the other point, the aptness
of Pindar's verses as electric signs for our times, might bear one
or two illustrations. 'Hands across the sea' is tersely Anglo-Saxon, but οἴκοθεν οἴκαδε is as tersely Greek, and means more for
an Anglo-American alliance; and the cry that is ringing in our
ears 'See America first' is an echo of οἴκοθεν μάτευε. 'Dollar diplomacy'
is one manifestation of ὁ πλοῦτος εὐρυσθενής and τὰν ἔμπρακτον ἄντλει μαχανάν might answer for a treatise on Pragmatism.