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ANTIPATER OF SIDON: EPIGRAMS

Antipater of Sidon wrote his epigrams in the late second century B.C., and he probably spent some time in Rome; for a summary of what we know about his life, see J.Clack, "Dioscorides and Antipater of Sidon: The Poems", pp.6-10 ( Google Books ). He was particularly fond of writing variations on a common theme; for instance he composed five different epigrams about Myron's statue of a heifer.

All of his surviving epigrams are shown here, in the order that they appear scattered throughout the Greek Anthology. The labels in red at the start of each epigram are their numbers within the Anthology. The labels in green are the numbers assigned to the epigrams in the edition by A.S.F.Gow & D.L.Page, "The Greek Anthology: Hellenistic Epigrams". To go to a specific epigram in the Gow-Page edition, type the number in the box below, and hit [go].
  → (in range 1 - 67):  
 

The translations are taken from the edition by W.R.Paton (1916-18), but have been modified to remove some of the archaic language. The translator's notes are shown in green.   Click on G to go to the Greek text of each epigram.



[6.14]   { G-P 1 }   G

The three brothers dedicated to Pan these implements of their craft : Damis his net for trapping the beasts of the mountain, Clitor this net for fish, and Pigres this untearable net that fetters birds' necks. For they never returned home with empty nets, the one from the copses, the second from the air, the third from the sea.


[6.15]   { G-P - }   G

- by ANTIPATER or ZOSIMUS

The blessed triad of brothers dedicated these nets to Pan : Clitor his fishing nets, Damis his hunting nets, Pigres his fowling nets. But may you grant them sport in air, sea, and land.


[6.46]   { G-P 2 }   G

Pherenicus, having quitted the wars and the altar, presented to Athene his brazen trumpet, previously the spokesman of peace and war, sending forth a barbarous *   clamour from its mouth.

*   Because an Etruscan invention.


[6.47]   { G-P 43 }   G

Bitto dedicated to Athene her melodious loom-comb, *   implement of the work that was her scanty livelihood, saying, "Hail, goddess, and take this ; for I, a widow in my fortieth year, forswear your gifts and on the contrary take to the works of Cypris ; I see that the wish is stronger than age."

*   See note to epigram 6.160.


[6.111]   { G-P 46 }   G

Lycormas, the son of Thearidas of Lasion, slew with the butt end of his whirled spear the hind that used to feed about the Ladon and the waters of Erymanthus and the heights of Pholoē, home of wild beasts. Its skin and two spiked horns he sliced off, and hung up by the shrine of Artemis the Huntress.


[6.115]   { G-P 47 }   G

The bull that formerly bellowed on the heights of Orbelus, the brute that laid Macedonia waste, Philip, the wielder of the thunder-bolt, the destroyer of the Dardanians, has slain, piercing its forehead with his hunting-spear ; and to you, Heracles, he has dedicated with its strong hide these horns, the defence of its monstrous head. From your race he sprang, and it well becomes him to emulate his ancestor's prowess in slaying cattle.


[6.118]   { G-P 49 }   G

The lyre, the bow, and the intricate nets are dedicated to Phoebus by Sosis, Phila and Polycrates. The archer dedicated the horn bow, she, the musician, the tortoise-shell lyre, the hunter his nets. Let the first be supreme in archery, let her be supreme in playing, and let the last be first among huntsmen.


[6.159]   { G-P 3 }   G

I, the trumpet that once poured forth the bloody notes of war in the battle, and the sweet tune of peace, hang here, Pherenicus, your gift to the Tritonian maid {Athene}, resting from my clamorous music.


[6.160]   { G-P 4 }   G

Industrious Telesilla, the daughter of good Diocles, dedicates to the Maiden who presides over workers in wool her weaving-comb, *   the halcyon of Pallas' loom, that sings in the morning with the swallows, her twirling spindle nodding with the weight, the agile spinner of the twisted thread, her thread and this work-basket that loves the distaff, the guardian of her well-wrought warp and balls of wool.

*   The singing of the kerkis is often mentioned. The kerkis is the comb with which the threads of the woof are driven home in the upright loom. Its singing is the rhythmical tapping of it against the loom by the worker.


[6.174]   { G-P 5 }   G

The three girls all of an age, as clever as the spider at weaving delicate webs, dedicated here to Pallas, Demo her well-plaited basket, Arsinoe her spindle that produces the fine thread, and Bacchylis her well-wrought comb, the weaver's nightingale, with the skilled stroke of which she deftly parted the threads. For each of them, stranger, willed to live without reproach, gaining her living by her hands.


[6.206]   { G-P 6 }   G

To Aphrodite the Heavenly we girl companions, all of one age, give these gifts : Bitinna these sandals, a comfort to her feet, the pretty work of skilled shoemakers, Philaenis the net, dyed with sea-purple, that confined her straying hair, Anticleia her fan, lovely Heracleia her veil, fine as a spider's web, and the daughter of Aristoteles, who bears her father's name, *   her coiled snake, the gold ornament of her slender ankles.

*   i.e. her name is Aristoteleia.


[6.219]   { G-P 64 }   G

Goaded by the fury of the dreadful goddess, tossing his locks in wild frenzy, clothed in woman's raiment with well-plaited tresses and a dainty netted hair-caul, a eunuch once took shelter in a mountain cavern, driven by the numbing snow of Zeus. But behind him rushed in unshivering a lion, slayer of bulls, returning to his den in the evening, who looking on the man, snuffing in his shapely nostrils the smell of human flesh, stood still on his sturdy feet, but rolling his eyes roared loudly from his greedy jaws. The cave, his den, thunders around him and the wooded peak that mounts nigh to the clouds echoes loud. But the priest startled by the deep voice felt all his stirred spirit broken in his breast. Yet he uttered from his lips the piercing shriek they use, and tossed his whirling locks, and holding up his great tambour, the revolving instrument of Olympian Rhea, he beat it, and it was the saviour of his life ; for the lion hearing the unaccustomed hollow boom of the bull's hide was afraid and took to flight. See how all-wise necessity taught a means of escape from death !


[6.223]   { G-P 50 }   G

This mutilated body of a sea-wandering scolopendra, eight fathoms {orguiai} long, all foul with foam and torn by the rocks, was found lying on this sandy beach by Hermonax when, in pursuit of his calling as a fisherman, he was drawing in his haul of fish, and having found it he hung it up as a gift to Ino and her son Palaemon, offering to the deities of the sea a monster of the sea.


[6.276]   { G-P 51 }   G

Hippe, the maiden, has put up her abundant curly hair, brushing it from her perfumed temples, for the solemn time when she must wed has come, and I the snood that used to rest there require in my wearer the grace of virginity. But, Artemis, in your loving-kindness grant to Lycomedes' child, who has bidden farewell to her knuckle-bones, *   both a husband and children.

*   i.e. the playthings of youth.


[6.287]   { G-P 52 }   G

Artemis, fairest of virgins, sovereign lady of women, we three wove this border for you. Bitiē wrought the dancing girls and the crooked stream of winding Maeander. Blonde Antianeira devised the decoration that lies on the left side of the river, and Bittiŏn that on the right, measuring a span and a palm.


[7.2]   { G-P 8 }   G

On Homer

O stranger, it is granted to me, this island rock of Ios, to hold Maeonides, the Persuader of men, the mighty-voiced, who sang even as the Muses. For in no other island but in me did he leave, when he died, the holy breath with which he told of the almighty nod of Zeus, and of Olympus, and of the strength of Ajax fighting for the ships, and of Hector his flesh stripped from his bones by the Thessalian horses of Achilles that dragged him over the plain of Troy. If you marvel that I who am so small cover so great a man, know that the spouse of Thetis *   likewise lies in Icos that hath but a few clods of earth.

*   Peleus.


[7.6]   { G-P 9 }   G

On the Same

O stranger, the sea-beat earth covers Homer, the herald of the heroes' valour, the spokesman of the gods, a second sun to the life of the Greeks, the light of the Muses, the mouth that grows not old of the whole world.


[7.8]   { G-P 10 }   G

On the poet Orpheus, son of Oeagrus and Calliope

No more, Orpheus, shall you lead the charmed oaks and rocks and the shepherdless herds of wild beasts. No more shall you lull to sleep the howling winds and the hail, and the drifting snow, and the roaring sea. For you are dead; and the daughters of Mnemosyne bewailed you much, and before all your mother Calliope. Why sigh we for our dead sons, when not even the gods have power to protect their children from death ?


[7.14]   { G-P 11 }   G

On Sappho

O Aeolian land, you cover Sappho, who with the immortal Muses is celebrated as the mortal Muse; whom Cypris and Eros together reared, with whom Peitho wove the undying wreath of song, a joy to Hellas and a glory to you. O Fates who twirl the triple thread on the spindle, why did you not spin an everlasting life for the singer who devised the deathless gifts of the Muses of Helicon ?


[7.23]   { G-P 13 }   G

On Anacreon

Let the four-clustered ivy, Anacreon, flourish around you, and the tender flowers of the purple meadows, and let fountains of white milk bubble up, and sweet-smelling wine gush from the earth, so that your ashes and bones may have joy, if indeed any delight touches the dead.


[7.26]   { G-P 14 }   G

On the Same

Stranger who passes by the simple tomb of Anacreon, if any profit came to you from my books, pour on my ashes, pour some drops, that my bones may rejoice refreshed with wine, that I who delighted in the loud-voiced revels of Dionysus, I who dwelt amid such music as loves wine, even in death may not suffer without Bacchus my sojourn in this land to which all the sons of men must come.


[7.27]   { G-P 15 }   G

On the Same

Anacreon, glory of Ionia, may you among the dead be not without your beloved revels, or without your lyre, and still may you sing with swimming eyes, shaking the entwined flowers that rest on your shiny hair, turned towards Eurypyle, or Megisteus, or the locks of Thracian Smerdies, spouting sweet wine, your robe drenched with the juice of the grape, wringing untempered nectar from its folds. For all your life, O old man, was poured out as an offering to these three, the Muses, Bacchus, and Love.


[7.29]   { G-P 16 }   G

On the Same

You sleep among the dead, Anacreon, your good day's labour done ; your sweet lyre that talked all through the night sleeps too. And Smerdies sleeps, the spring-tide of the Loves, to whom, striking the lyre, you made music like unto nectar. For you were the target of Love, the Love of lads, and to shoot you alone he had a bow and subtle archer craft.


[7.30]   { G-P 17 }   G

On the Same

This is Anacreon 's tomb; here sleeps the Teian swan and the untempered madness of his passion for lads. Still sings he some song of longing to the lyre about Bathyllus, and the white marble is perfumed with ivy. Not even death has quenched your loves, and in the house of Acheron you suffer all through yourself the pangs of the fever of Cypris.


[7.34]   { G-P 18 }   G

On Pindar

This earth holds Pindar, the Pierian trumpet, the heavily smiting smith of well-outlined hymns. When you hear his melody, you would exclaim that a swarm of bees from the Muses fashioned it in the bridal chamber of Cadmus.


[7.81]   { G-P 34 }   G

On the Seven Sages

Of the seven sages Lindus bore you, O Cleobulus, and the land of Sisyphus *   says that Periander is hers. Mytilene bore Pittacus and fair Priene Bias, and Miletus Thales, best support of Justice, Sparta Chilon, and Attica Solon - all guardians of admirable Prudence.

*   Corinth.


[7.146]   { G-P 7 }   G

On Ajax

By the tomb of Ajax on the Rhoetean shore, I, Virtue, sit and mourn, heavy at heart, with shorn locks, in soiled raiment - because in the judgment court of the Greeks not Virtue but Fraud triumphed. The arms of Achilles would cry out, "We want no crooked words, but manly valour."


[7.161]   { G-P 20 }   G

On Aristomenes, on whose Tomb stood an Eagle

"Fleet-winged bird of Zeus, why do you stand in splendour on the tomb of great Aristomenes ?"   "I tell unto men that as I am chief among the birds, so was he among the youth. Timid doves watch over cowards, but we delight in dauntless men."


[7.164]   { G-P 21 }   G

A Variant of an epigram of Leonidas ( 7.163 )

A. "Tell me, lady, your parentage, name and country."   B. "Calliteles begat me, Praxo was my name, and my land Samos." A. "And who erected this monument?"   B. "Theocritus who loosed my maiden girdle, untouched as yet" A. "How did you die ? "   B. "In the pains of labour." A. "And tell me what age thou had reached."   B. " Twice eleven years." A. "Childless ? "   B. "No, stranger, I left Calliteles behind me, my baby boy." A. "May he reach a grey and blessed old age."   B. "And may Fortune, O stranger, steer the course of all your life before a fair breeze."


[7.165]   { G-P - }   G

- by ANTIPATER or ARCHIAS

A. "Tell me, lady, who you were?"   B. "Praxo." A. "Who your father?"   B. "Calliteles." A. " And from what country are you ? "   B. "Samos." A. "Who made your tomb?"   B. "Theocritus who took me to wife." A. "How did you die?"   B. "In labour pangs." A. "At what age?"   B. "Twenty-two." A. "Have you left a child?"   B. "Calliteles, a baby of three." A. "May he grow to manhood."   B. "And may Fortune, O wayfarer, end your life happily."


[7.172]   { G-P 22 }   G

I, Alcimenes, who used to protect the crops from the starlings and that high-flying robber the Bistonian crane, was swinging the pliant arms of my leathern sling to keep the crowd of birds away, when a dipsas viper wounded me about the ankles, and injecting into my flesh the bitter bile from her jaws robbed me of the sunlight. Look ye how gazing at what was in the air I noticed not the evil that was creeping at my feet.


[7.209]   { G-P 57 }   G

Here by the threshing-floor, O ant, you careworn toiler, I built for you a grave-mound of thirsty clod, so that in death too you may delight in the corn-bearing furrow of Demeter, as you lie in the the chamber of earth that the plough upturned.


[7.210]   { G-P 63 }   G

Just when you had become the mother, swallow, of a new-born brood, just when you first were warming your children under your wings, a many-coiled serpent, darting into the nest where lay your young, robbed you of the fruit of your womb. Then when with all his might he came to slay you, too, as you were lamenting them, he fell into the greedy breath of the hearth-fire. So died he, the deed undone. See how Hephaestus succoured and saved the race of his son Erichthonius. *  

*   Procne, who was changed into a swallow, was the daughter of Erichthonius.


[7.218]   { G-P 23 }   G

I contain her, who in Love's company luxuriated in gold and purple, more delicate than tender Cypris, Lais the citizen of sea-girt Corinth, brighter than the white waters of Peirene; that mortal Cythereia who had more noble suitors than the daughter of Tyndareus, all plucking her mercenary favours. Her very tomb smells of sweet-scented saffron ; her bones are still soaked with fragrant ointment, and her anointed locks still breathe a perfume as of frankincense. For her Aphrodite tore her lovely cheeks, and sobbing Love groaned and wailed. Had she not made her bed the public slave of gain, Greece would have battled for her as for Helen.


[7.232]   { G-P - }   G

- by ANTIPATER or ANYTE

This Lydian land holds Amyntor, Philippus's son, whose hands were often busied with iron war. Him no painful disease led to the house of Night, but he perished holding his round shield over his comrade.


[7.241]   { G-P 25 }   G

Again and again did your father and mother, Ptolemy, *   defile their hair in their grief for you ; and long did your tutor lament you, gathering in his warlike hands the dark dust to scatter on his head. Great Egypt tore her hair and the broad home of Europa {Sidon} groaned aloud. The very moon was darkened by mourning and deserted the stars and her heavenly path. For you perished by a pestilence that devastated all the land, before you could grasp in your young hand the sceptre of your fathers. Yet night did not receive you from night ; for such princes are not led by Hades to his house, but by Zeus to Olympus.

*   It is not certain which of the Egyptian princes this is - perhaps Ptolemy Eupator, who died in about 150 B.C.; see the note by Chris Bennett.


[7.246]   { G-P 24 }   G

On the promontory of Issus by the wild waves of the Cilician sea we lie, the many myriads of Persians who followed our King Darius on our last journey. It was the deed of Alexander the Macedonian.


[7.303]   { G-P 26 }   G

When little Cleodemus, still living on milk, set his foot outside the edge of the ship, the truly Thracian *   Boreas cast him into the swelling sea, and the waves put out the light of the baby's life. Ino, you are a goddess who knows not pity, since you did not avert bitter death from this child of the same age as your Melicertes.

*   i.e. savage.


[7.316]   { G-P - }   G

- by LEONIDAS or ANTIPATER

Pass by my monument, neither greeting me, nor asking who I am and whose son. Otherwise may you never reach the end of the journey you are on, and if you pass by in silence, not even then may you reach the journey's end.


[7.353]   { G-P 27 }   G

This is the monument of grey-haired Maronis, on whose tomb you see a wine cup carved in stone. She the wine-bibber and chatterer, is not sorry for her children or her children's destitute father, but one thing she laments even in her grave, that the device of the wine-god on the tomb is not full of wine.


[7.409]   { G-P 66 }   G

Praise the sturdy verse of tireless Antimachus, worthy of the majesty of the demigods of old, beaten on the anvil of the Muses, if you are gifted with a keen ear, if you aspire to gravity of words, if you would pursue a path untrodden and unapproached by others. If Homer holds the sceptre of song, yet, though Zeus is greater than Poseidon, Poseidon his inferior is the chief of the immortals ; so the Colophonian bows before Homer, but leads the crowd of other singers.


[7.413]   { G-P 67 }   G

I, Hipparchia, *   chose not the tasks of amply-robed woman, but the manly life of the Cynics. Nor do tunics fastened with brooches and thick-soled slippers, and the hair-caul wet with ointment please me, but rather the wallet and its fellow-traveller the staff and the coarse double mantle suited to them, and a bed strewn on the ground. I shall have a greater name than that of Arcadian Atalanta by so much as wisdom is better than racing over the mountains.

*   Wife of the Cynic Crates.


[7.423]   { G-P 28 }   G

The jay, stranger, will tell you that I was ever a woman of many words, ever talkative, and the cup will tell you that I was of a convivial habit. The bow proclaims me Cretan, the wool a good workwoman, and the snood that tied up my hair shows that I was grey-headed. Such was the Bittis that this tomb with its stele covers, the wedded wife of . . . But, hail, good sir, and do us who are gone to Hades the favour to bid us hail likewise in return.


[7.424]   { G-P 29 }   G

A. "I seek to discover what is the meaning of these carvings that Agis made upon your stele, Lysidice. For the reins and muzzle and the bird who comes from Tanagra celebrated for its fowls, the bold awaker of battles, such are not things that please or become sedentary women, but rather the works of the spindle and the loom."   B. "The bird of the night proclaims me one who rises in the night to work, the reins tell that I directed my house, and this horse's muzzle that I was not fond of many words and talkative, but full of admirable silence."


[7.425]   { G-P 30 }   G

Do not wonder at seeing on Myro's tomb a whip, an owl, a bow, a grey goose and a swift bitch. The bow proclaims that I was the strict well-strung directress of my house, the bitch that I took true care of my children, the whip that I was no cruel or overbearing mistress, but a just chastiser of faults, the goose that I was a careful guardian of the house, and this owl that I was a faithful servant of owl-eyed Pallas. Such were the things in which I took delight, wherefore my husband Biton carved these emblems on my grave-stone.


[7.426]   { G-P 31 }   G

A. "Tell, lion, you slayer of cattle, on whose tomb you do stand there and who was worthy of your valour."   B. "Teleutias, the son of Theodoras, who was far the most valiant of men, as I am judged to be of beasts. Not in vain stand I here, but I represent the prowess of the man, for he was indeed a lion to his enemies."


[7.427]   { G-P 32 }   G

Come let us see who lies under this stone. But I see no inscription cut on it, only nine cast dice, of which the first four represent the throw called Alexander, the next four the throw called Ephebe - the bloom of youthful maturity - and the one the more unlucky throw called Chian. Is their message this, that both the proud sceptred potentate and the young man in his flower end in nothing, or is that not so? - I think now like a Cretan archer I shall shoot straight at the mark. The dead man was a Chian, his name was Alexander and he died in youth. How well one told through dumb dice of the young man dead by ill-chance and the life staked and lost!


[7.464]   { G-P 53 }   G

Of a surety, Aretemias, when descending from the boat, you did set your foot on the beach of Cocytus, carrying in your young arms your babe newly dead, the fair daughters of the Dorian land pitied you in Hades and questioned you concerning your death ; and you, your cheeks bedewed with tears, did give them these mournful tidings "My dears, I brought forth twin children ; one I left with Euphron my husband, and the other I bring to the dead."


[7.467]   { G-P 54 }   G

This is the lament your mother, Artemidorus, uttered over your tomb, bewailing your death at twelve years of age. "All the fruit of my travail has perished in fire and ashes, perished all your miserable father's toil for you, and perished all your winsome delight ; for you are gone to the land of the departed, from which there is no turning back or home-coming. Nor did you reach your prime, my child, and in your place nothing is left for us but your grave-stone and dumb dust."


[7.498]   { G-P 55 }   G

Damis of Nysa once navigating a small vessel from the Ionian Sea to the Peloponnesus, brought safe and sound to land the ship with all on board, which the waves and winds had swept out of its course ; but just as they were casting anchor on the rocks the old man died from the chilling snow-storm, having fallen asleep. Mark, stranger, how having found a sweet haven for others, he himself entered the haven of Lethe.


[7.711]   { G-P 56 }   G

Already her saffron couch inside the golden wedding-chamber had been laid for Cleinareta the bride of Pitana. Already her parents Demo and Nicippus were looking forward to raising on high in both hands the blazing pine-torch, when sickness carried the girl away and took her to the sea of Lethe. All sadly her girl companions instead of beating at her door beat their breasts, as is the rite of death.


[7.713]   { G-P 58 }   G

{Not Sepulchral}

Few are Erinna's verses nor is she wordy in her songs, but this her little work is inspired. Therefore she does not fail to be remembered, and is not held hidden under the shadowy wing of black night. But we, stranger, the countless myriads of later singers, lie in heaps withering from oblivion. The low song of the swan is better than the cawing of jackdaws echoing far and wide through the clouds of spring.


[7.745]   { G-P 19 }   G

Ibycus, the robbers slew you when from the ship you landed on the untrodden desert shore. But first you called on the flock of cranes who came to witness that you did die a most cruel death. And not in vain did you cry out, for through the calling of the cranes the Erinys avenged your death in the land of Corinth. O you race of robbers greedy of gain, why do you not fear the anger of the gods ? Not even did Aegisthus, who of old slew the singer, escape the eyes of the dark-robed Furies.


[7.748]   { G-P 33 }   G

What one-eyed Cyclops built all this vast stone mound of Assyrian Semiramis, or what giants, sons of earth, raised it to reach near to the seven Pleiads, inflexible, unshakable, a mass weighing on the broad earth like to the peak of Athos? Ever blessed people, who to the citizens of Heracleia *   . . .

*   The text is probably corrupt at this point; there is no obvious connection between Semiramis and Heracleia.


[9.58]   { G-P - }

Seven Wonders of the World:   see Antipater of Thessalonica


[9.66]   { G-P 12 }   G

Mnemosyne was smitten with astonishment when she heard honey-voiced Sappho, wondering if men possess a tenth Muse.


[9.151]   { G-P 59 }   G

Where is your celebrated beauty, Doric Corinth ? Where are the battlements of your towers and your ancient possessions ? Where are the temples of the immortals, the houses and the matrons of the town of Sisyphus, and her myriads of people ? Not even a trace is left of you, most unhappy of towns, but war has seized on and devoured everything. We alone, the Nereids, Ocean's daughters, remain inviolate, and lament, like halcyons, your sorrows.


[9.323]   { G-P 60 }   G

Who hung here these glittering shields, these unstained spears and unbroken helmets, dedicating to murderous Ares ornaments that are no ornaments ? Will no one cast these weapons out of my house ? Their place is in the wassailing halls of unwarlike men, not within the walls of Enyalius. I delight in hacked trophies and the blood of dying men, if, indeed, I am Ares the Destroyer.


[9.567]   { G-P 61 }   G

Antiodemis, the nursling of Aphrodite, who from her babyhood slept on purple cloth, the glance of whose melting eyes is softer than sleep, the halcyon of Lysis, *   the delightful toy of Methe, whose arms flow like water, who alone among women has no bones at all (for she was all cream-cheese), has crossed to Italy, that by her softening charm she may make Rome cease from war and lay down the sword.

*   Lysis was the originator of a particular style of merry song, the singers of which were called Lysiodoi.


[9.603]   { G-P 62 }   G

These five votaries of Dionysus the Saviour are entering upon the rapid dance. One lifts on high the body of a grim lion, another an antlered Arcadian stag, a third a bird with lovely plumage, a fourth a kettle-drum, and the fifth a heavy brazen clapper. All are frenzied and distraught by the Bacchic fury of the god. *  

*   Possibly on the famous group of Thespian women by Praxiteles, which Mummius transferred to Rome.


[9.720]   { G-P 36 }   G

On Myron's Statue of a Heifer

If Myron had not fixed my feet to this stone I would have gone to pasture with the other cows.


[9.721]   { G-P 37 }   G

Calf, why do you approach my flanks, and why do you low ? The artist put no milk in my udder.


[9.722]   { G-P 38 }   G

Pass by the heifer, cowherd, and whistle not to her from afar. She is expecting her calf to suckle it.


[9.723]   { G-P 39 }   G

The lead and stone hold me fast, but, otherwise, thanks to you, sculptor Myron, I would be nibbling lotus and rushes.


[9.724]   { G-P 40 }   G

I think the heifer will low. Of a truth it is not Prometheus alone who moulds living creatures, but you too, Myron.


[10.2]   { G-P 41 }   G

It is the season for the ship to travel tearing through the waves; no longer does the sea toss, furrowed by dreadful fret. Already the swallow is building her round houses under the roof, and the tender leaves of the meadows smile. Therefore, sailors, coil your wet hawsers and drag the anchors from their nests in the harbour. Haul up your well-woven sails. This is what you are told by me, Priapus of the harbour, the son of Bromius.


[12.97]   { G-P 65 }   G

Eupalamus is ruddy red like Love, as far as Meriones, *   the captain of the Cretans ; but from Meriones onwards Podaleirius no longer goes back to the Dawn : see how envious Nature, the universal mother, is. For if his lower parts were equal to his upper he would excel Achilles, the grandson of Aeacus.

*   He means his thighs (meros). In line 5 there is a play on Podaleirius, "lily-footed," and so pale and unlike the rosy dawn, but the joke is obscure.


[16.167]   { G-P 44 }   G

On the Cnidian Aphrodite and on Praxiteles' Statue of Eros at Thespiae

You will say, when you look on Cypris in rocky Cnidus, that she, though of stone, may set a stone on fire ; but when you see the sweet Love in Thespiae you will say that he will not only set fire to a stone, but to cold adamant. Such were the gods Praxiteles made, each in a different continent, that everything should not be burnt up by the double fire.


[16.178]   { G-P 45 }   G

On the Aphrodite Anadyomene of Apelles

Look on the work of Apelles' pencil : Cypris, just rising from the sea, her mother ; how, grasping her dripping hair with her hand, she wrings the foam from the wet locks. Athena and Hera themselves will now say, "No longer do we enter the contest of beauty with you."


[ - ]   { G-P 35 }

quoted by: DiogLaert_7.29

τῆνος ὅδε Ζήνων Κιτίῳ φίλος, ὅς ποτ' Ὄλυμπον
ἔδραμεν, οὐκ Ὄσσῃ Πήλιον ἀνθέμενος,
οὐδὲ τά γ' Ἡρακλῆος ἀέθλεε· τὰν δέ ποτ' ἄστρα
ἀτραπιτὸν μούνας εὗρε σαοφροσύνας.

Translated by R.D.Hicks:

Here lies great Zenon, dear to Citium, who scaled high Olympus, though he piled not Pelion on Ossa, nor toiled at the labours of Heracles, but this was the path he found out to the stars - the way of temperance alone.


[ - ]   { G-P 42 }

IDelos_2549   (which also contains an epigram by Antisthenes of Paphos on the same subject)

πέντε τάδ', ἀμφιβόατε Φιλόστρατε, θήκαο δῶρα
ἀστὲ Παλαιστίνας θεοῖσι φυλασσομένας·
Ζανὶ μὲν εὐρυμέδοντι θυηδόκον ἁγνὸν ἄγαλμα
μάρμαιρον σμύρναι πίονι καὶ λιβάνωι·
παιδὶ δὲ τᾶι Λατοῦς Σκύλλαν βορόν, ἅρπαγα φωτῶν
καὶ σκαφέων, ἀμφὼ ταῦτα παναργύρεα·
Φοίβωι δ' εὐπλοκάμωι χρύσεα ῥυτὰ νεκταρέοιο
ἄξια τᾶς μακάρων οὐρανίου σταγόνος·
Δάλου δε προμάχοισι δορισκάπτροις αὖ ἔφηνας
κίοσιν εὖ δισσὰν παστάδ' ἐρειδομέναν.
εἴης πᾶς μακάριστος, ὅτι πλούτοιο γεραίρεις
ἀγλαίαι θνατῶν φῦλα καὶ ἀθανάτων.


O far-famed Philostratos, *   citizen of Palestine that (?) pays heed to the gods, you have dedicated these five gifts.

For wide-ruling Zeus: a sacred incense-holder, glowing with rich myrrh and frankincense.
For the daughter of Leto: greedy Scylla, the destroyer of men and ships; both of these made entirely of silver.
For fair-haired Phoebus: golden rhytons, fit for nectar, the heavenly drink of the blessed gods.
For the spear-wielding defenders of Delos: you displayed a double colonnade, well supported with columns.

May you be all blessed, because you honour the tribes of mortal men and immortal gods with the splendour of weath.

*   Philostratus of Ascalon was a banker, who made generous donations to embellish Delos. The gifts listed here were offered to Zeus, Artemis, Apollo and the Romans.


[ - ]   { G-P 48 }

POxy_662   (which also contains an epigram by Leonidas on the same subject)

Σιληνῶν ἀλόχοις ἀντρηίσιν ἠδὲ κεράστᾳ
ταῦτ' ἀκρωρίτᾳ Πανὶ καθηγεμόνι,
καὶ προτομὰν ἀκμῆτα καὶ (?) αὐτὸ νέον τόδε κάπρου,
δέρμα τὸ μηδ' αὐτῷ ῥηγνύμενον χάλυβι,
Γλῆνις ἀνηέρτησε καλᾶς χαριτήσιον ἄγρας
δεικνὺς ἰφθίμου κοῦρος Ὀνασιφάνευς.

Translated by D.L.Page:

To the Silens' mates *   that dwell in caves, and to their chieftain, horned Pan of Acroria, an unscathed head and this new bearskin, that not even steel has rent, were hung up by Glenis, son of mighty Onasiphanes, who showed these thank-offerings for a fine quarry.

*   The nymphs.


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