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ANYTE : EPIGRAMS

Anytē of Tegea was a Greek poetess of the early 3rd century B.C.; some of her epigrams were included in the Garland of Meleager, and have therefore been preserved in the Greek Anthology. For a summary of what is known about her life and poetry, see the introduction by I.M.Plant in "Women Writers of Ancient Greece and Rome" ( Google Books ).

All of her 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".

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.



[6.123]   { G-P 1 }   G

Stand here, O murderous spear, and no longer drip from your brazen barb the dismal blood of foes ; but resting in the high marble house of Athene, announce the bravery of Cretan Echecratidas.


[6.153]   { G-P 2 }   G

The cauldron would hold an ox ; the dedicator is Cleobotus, the son of Eriaspidas ; his city is spacious Tegea. The gift is made to Athene ; the artist is Aristoteles of Cleitor, who bears the same name as his father.


[6.312]   { G-P 13 }   G

The children, O billy-goat, have put purple reins on you and a muzzle on your bearded face, and they train you to race like a horse round the god's temple that he may look on their childish joy.


[7.190]   { G-P 20 }   G

-- By ANYTE or LEONIDAS

For her locust, the nightingale of the fields, and her cicada that rests on the trees one tomb hath little Myro made, shedding girlish tears ; for inexorable Hades hath carried off her two pets.


[7.202]   { G-P 11 }   G

On a Cock

No longer, as of old, shall you awake early to rouse me from bed, flapping rapidly your wings ; for the spoiler *   stole secretly upon you, as you slept, and slew you, nipping your throat swiftly with his claws.

*   Presumably a fox.


[7.208]   { G-P 9 }   G

This tomb Damis built for his steadfast war-horse pierced through the breast by gory Ares. The black blood bubbled through his stubborn hide, and he drenched the earth in his sore death-pangs.


[7.215]   { G-P 12 }   G

{On a Dolphin}

No longer exulting in the sea that carries me, shall I lift up my neck as I rush from the depths ; no longer shall I snort round the decorated bows of the ship, proud of her figure-head, my image. But the dark sea-water threw me up on the land and here I lie by this narrow (?) beach.


[7.232]   { G-P 21 }   G

-- Attributed to ANTIPATER OF SIDON

This Lydian land holds Amyntor, Philips 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.


[7.236]   { G-P 22 }   G

-- Attributed to ANTIPATER OF THESSALONICA

I, this Magnesian tomb, am not that of Themistocles, but I was built as a record of the envious misjudgement of the Greeks. *  

*   The ashes of Themistocles were transferred from Magnesia to Athens. The lines are, however, somewhat obscure.


[7.486]   { G-P 5 }   G

Often on this her daughter's tomb did Cleina call on her dear short-lived child in wailing tones, summoning back the soul of Philaenis, who before her wedding passed across the pale stream of Acheron.


[7.490]   { G-P 6 }   G

I bewail virgin Antibia, to whose father's house many suitors came, eager to wed her, led by the report of her beauty and discretion ; but destroying Fate, in the case of all, sent their hopes rolling far away.


[7.492]   { G-P 23 }   G

We leave you, Miletus, dear fatherland, refusing the lawless love of the impious Gauls, three maidens, your citizens, whom the sword of the Celts forced to this fate. We brooked not the unholy union nor such a wedding, but we made Hades our guardian. *  

*   This tale seems to be derived from some romance. According to Jerome {Adv. Jovianum, Lib. I., p. 186) the maidens were seven in number.


[7.538]   { G-P 24 }   G

This man when alive was Manes, *   but now he is dead he is as great as great Darius.

*   A slave's name.


[7.646]   { G-P 7 }   G

These were the last words that Erato spoke, throwing her arms round her dear father's neck, her cheeks wet with fresh tears : "Father, I am yours no longer ; I am gone, and sombre death casts already his black veil over my eyes."


[7.649]   { G-P 8 }   G

Your mother, Thersis, instead of a bridal chamber and solemn wedding rites, gave you to stand on this your marble tomb a maiden like to you in stature and beauty, and even now you are dead we may speak to you.


[7.724]   { G-P 4 }   G

Your valour, Proarchus, slew you in the fight, and you have put in black mourning by your death the house of your father Pheidias. But the stone above you sings this good message, that you fell fighting for your dear fatherland.


[9.144]   { G-P 15 }   G

This is the place of Cypris, for it is sweet to her to look ever from the land on the bright deep, that she may make the voyages of sailors happy ; and around the sea trembles, looking on her polished image.


[9.313]   { G-P 16 }   G

Sit here, quite shaded by the beautiful luxuriant foliage of the laurel, and draw sweet drink from the lovely spring, that your limbs, panting with the labours of summer, may take rest beaten by the western breeze.


[9.314]   { G-P 17 }   G

Here stand I, Hermes, in the cross-roads by the wind-swept belt of trees near the grey beach, giving rest to weary travellers, and cold and stainless is the water that the fountain sheds.


[9.745]   { G-P 14 }   G

Look on the horned goat of Bacchus, how haughtily with saucy eye he looks down on his flowing beard, exulting that often in the mountains the Naiad, caressing his cheeks, took those locks in her rosy hand.


[16.28]   { G-P 18 }   G

Stranger, rest your weary legs under the elm ; hark how sweetly the breeze murmurs in the green leaves ; and drink a cold draught from the fountain ; for this is indeed a resting-place dear to travellers in the burning heat.


[16.231]   { G-P 19 }   G

On a Statue of Pan

A. "Why, rural Pan, thus seated in the lonesome shadowy wood, do you sound this sweet-voiced reed-pipe ?"   B. "So that the heifers may graze over these dewy mountains, cropping the luxurious tresses of the herbage." *  

*   Though stachues seems to be universally used as equivalent to "ears of corn," it cannot here surely mean that. It means, evidently, any tall herbage, such as wild oats.


[16.291]   { G-P 3 }   G

To shock-headed Pan and the Nymphs of the sheepfold did the shepherd Theodotus set this his gift here under the hill, because, when he was sore tired by the parching summer heat, they refreshed him, holding out to him sweet water in their hands.


[ - ]   { G-P 10 }


  ὤλεο δή ποτε καὶ σὺ πολύρριζον παρὰ θάμνον
  Λόκρι, φιλοφθόγγων ὠκυτάτα σκυλάκων,
  τοῖον ἐλαφρίζοντι τεῷ ἐγκάθετο κώλῳ
  ἰὸν ἀμείλικτον ποικιλόδειρος ἔχις.

Translated by I.M.Plant:

You too once perished by a many-rooted bush, Locrian, swiftest of the puppies, who love to bark; into your nimble paw such cruel poison sank the speckle-throated viper.


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