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1442, 1443. rws .... févos, that the stranger may have lost his suit before arriving here, i.e. by his failure to appear on the appointed day, the suit would go against him by default. 'Epņunu dianv opleiv was the phrase in Attic law. The advantage which the Sycophant expects to gain by his wings is, that the unfortunate party against whom the suit is commenced will be unable to equal his rapid mode of doing business.

1446. Béu Bukos, a whirligig, or top:

1448. Kopkupala mtepá. The Corcyrean wings, are whips from Corcyra, or such as were used in Corcyra, which are mentioned in a passage of Phrynichus cited by the Scholiast. See also Thucydides, IV. 47.

1452. årolißátels (from dißás, a drop) will you not drop off? 1453. otpeWo Sikoravoupylav, justice-twisting rascality.

1455-1466. The Chorus now describe the wondrous things they have seen in flying over the earth. The poet, by ingenious turns, makes it the occasion of sly and amusing satire.—Sév&pov. They describe Cieonỹmus, the Sycophant and Shield-dropper, as a strange

“ Apte autem arboris mentionem faciunt aves.' Blaydes. kapdías åtwtépw. There is here a play upon the words, the phrase meaning without heart, i.e. cor or, looking upon leonymus as a tree,-and the Scholiast says he is so called, either because he was tall or stupid as a stick,—remote from Cardia.-Toll rèv ûpos, in spring it shoots forth and plays the informer ; alluding to the fact, that in the month Munychion the cases of foreigners were adjudged, as the Scholiast explains it. But Blaydes thinks spring is used here for the time of peace, as winter is applied (v. 1465) metaphorically to

This tree, the sycophant, puts forth in spring, and in winter sheds the shields ; that is, in time of peace Cleonymus busies himself as an informer, and in time of war he runs away from the enemy, and drops his shield in his flight. This is our old acquaintance, the shielddropper of the Clouds.

1467—1478. These lines are occupied with Orestes, the robber, who is also mentioned before, and whom he classes with the heroes, on account of his name. According to the Scholiast, some of the heroes were supposed to walk by night, and to strike with blindness or apoplexy those whom they met. The haunt of Orestes is described as a place hard by darkness itself in the solitude of lamps. Trávta TÅTidétia, all the noble parts. The language is double-meaning, applying either to the being struck with apoplexy in the nobler parts, i.e. the head and right side, or to being stripped by Orestes of the most valuable articles of dress.

The scene that follows is one of the most humorous in the play. Prometheus, the natural friend of man, and still more the natural enemy of Zeus, comes hurrying in, to give secret information to Peisthetairos and the birds of the sad condition to which the gods have been reduced, and to advise Peisthetairos to accept no propositions that will be offered by the ambassadors already on their way, unless Zeus shall surrender the sceptre, and give Basileia, or Royalty, in marriage to Peistlietairos. The ambassadors are Poseidon



Heracles, and Triballos, a barbarian god. Heracles is gained over to assent to the demands of the birds by the prospect of a good dinner, which is to be made of certain rebellious birds who have paid the penalty of their treason, and are now cooking in the kitchen. To a Greek accustomed to this representation of Heracles,—as, for instance, in the Alcestis of Euripides,-no small part of the amusement of the piece would flow from the manner in which the scruples of the doughty hero are overcome. A legal view of his rights of inheritance, as affected by the illegitimacy of his birth, has some weight, but not so much as the smell of the roasting birds.

1479. nws yń (elliptical), I hope that Zeus will not see me. 1483. TÝVLK' . . . . ñuépas; what time o' day is it?

1485. βουλυτός, και περαιτέρω ; The time expressed by βουλυτός, according to its etymology, is that of unyoking the cattle ; therefore, after the agricultural work of the day was over ; towards evening.

1486. βδελύττομαι. Peisthetairos is out of all patience with Prometheus, whose mind, intent upon his own situation, pays no heed to what the other says :- How I hate

you. 1488. oőtw uév. Blaydes has the following note upon


expression :-* Sch. : ώς εν κωμωδία, ως καλόν τι ακούσας το οίμωζε, åtoralúhtetaL pavepòv ajtóv delkvús. Festive, quasi dicat: Sic quidem, benigna tua compellatione victus, qui me in malam rem abire jubeas, omnem animo tuo dubitationem eximam et caput meum detegam." But I am inclined to think that Prometheus, still inattentive to what Peisthetairos is saying, refers in these words to his question, is Zeus clearing the clouds away, or gathering them ? or, is it fair weather or foul ? because, if it is foul, I'll uncoder. Upon which he throws off his disguise, and stands revealed as Prometheus.

1493. okládelov, parasol. He has come provided with this shelter, under cover of which he may safely unfold his errand.

1498. ws akoúovtos Néye, say, for I am listening. Const. us with genitive absolute. Cf. Gr.

1499. πηνίκ άττ'; about what time 2 άττα = τινά.

1504. Oeopodopious. The ceremonies of the Thesmophoria lasted five days, one of which was spent in fasting. See Smith's Dict. of Gr. and Rom. Antiq. ; also Aristophanes, Thesmoph.

1505. Bápßapoi Ocol, the barbarian gods, who, living farther off from the men than the Olympian, are also sufferers from the stoppage of sacrificial supplies, and threaten war upon Zeus unless he will throw open the ports, so that the entrails of the victims may be imported.

1507. ăvwbev, from above, or beyond.

1512. Tarp@os. The Exekestides here mentioned is the same person who has been already satirized as an intrusive citizen. The constitution of Athens required a scrutiny to be made into the birth of any citizen before he could assume the functions of office. He must be able to show that Apollo was his narppos, or patrial deity, and that he was legally under the protection of Zeus Herkeios ; that he was an Athenian on both sides, and from the third generation. Blaydes, giving the substance of Brunck's note, says,-“Execestidem igitur, qui, ut peregrina origine et servili, Apollinem illum natpqov Atheniensium vindicare sibi non poterat, ridicule fingit comicus habere, ut barbarum, natpdov seu tutelarem deum aliquem ex barbaris illis, de quibus nunc agitur.”

1514. Tpißalloi. The Triballi were a Mosian tribe.

1515. ToŮmutpußeins. There is a play upon the resemblance in sound between επιτριβείης and Tριβαλλοί. Cary gives as an equivalent, “ trouble" ;' “ tribulation would be nearer.

We might, perhaps, make something like it out of the Choctaws :—“Ah, yes ! that's where you be choked came from."

1526. kwlakpétny. This was the officer who paid out the judicial fees. See Smith's Dict. of Gr. and Rom. Antiq. ; also Hermann's Political Antiquities [Handb. Gr. Ant. 167 B).- Tpløßola. The Tpiábolov was the fee or sum paid daily to each dicast.

1531. åtav@pakigouev, we roast, i.e. cook ; referring to the myth according to which Prometheus bestowed fire upon mortals, having stolen it from the gods.

1534. Tiuw kalapós, a pure (mere) Timon. Timon the misanthrope is here meant. This personage was a contemporary of Alci. biades, with whom he continued his intimacy after having secluded himself from the rest of the world. He is mentioned in another place by Aristophanes (Lysistrata, 809), and Antiphanes made him the subject of a comedy. The student will remember Shakspeare's Timon of Athens, and the manner in which the great English dramatist has worked out the hints of the ancients respecting this eccentric character.

1536. kavnpópw. The ravnpópou were high-born Athenian maidens, who carried on their heads baskets containing the materials and implements of sacrifice at the great festivals, such as the Panathenaic, Dionysaic, &c. They were usually attended by persons holding sunshades over their heads.

1538—1549. The Eklámodes, or shade-feet, were a fabulous tribe in Libya, mentioned by Strabo, and by Ktesias (according to Harpocration), who compares the feet to the web-feet of geese. They are described as walking Tetpatroondóv, or on all fours; or rather on all threes, using one foot, spread out like an umbrella, to protect themselves from the heat of an African sun. In this place the poet designates the philosophers, and especially, as is shown by v. 1540, the disciples of Socrates. The spirit of the passage is like that of the ludicrous scene in the Clouds, where the disciples of the phrontistery are represented in a variety of absurd attitudes and positions. yuxaywyei signifies either to conduct souls, as Hermes guided the spirits of the departed ; or to evoke spirits, as was done at Lake Avernus ; or to allure the mind, as Socrates was accused of doing to the young men of Athens, corrupting them by his new doctrines. Here it is used ambiguously. Socrates evokes spirits at the lake of the Shade-feet. He is the necromancer of that marvellous tribe. IIelo av&pos. This is the person mentioned in Thucydides (VIII. 65, seq.) as having been active in subverting the democracy, in the time of the Peloponnesian war. On account of his cowardice, he is

represented as coming to Socrates in search of his soul, which has left him during his life. He brings with him for a victim a camellamb, either a young camel or a huge sheep. The precise meaning is uncertain, Doubtless there was some sarcastic allusion, readily taken by the audience, but now lost. At any rate, the whole scene is a parody upon the nekyomanteia, in Odyssey XI.-årînde, went off ; i. e. like Odysseus in the scene above referred to, withdrew from the sacrifice that the shades of the dead might not be disturbed.VUKTepis, the bat. See ante, v. 1282. He is said to have come up from Hades, on account of his ghostly appearance.

The gods now arrive. Poseidon is giving lessons in manners to the barbarian god, who has never before been in good society. 1552. ér'....

áp tréxel ; do you wear your dress so awkwardly? Literally, to wear it awry, upon the left; to put it, therefore, on the wrong side. The cloak, when properly put on, was so arranged as to leave the right arm at liberty. At least, that was originally the case when the garment was worn it its simplest form. “ In nothing," says Hope (Costume of the Ancients, Vol. I. p. 24), “ do we see more ingenuity exerted, or more fancy displayed, than in the various modes of making the peplum form grand and contrasted draperies. Indeed, the different degrees of simplicity or of grace observable in the throw of the peplum were regarded as indicating the different degrees of rusticity or of refinement inherent in the disposition of the wearer,”

1554. Aalotodias. Laispodias was a general, mentioned in Thucydides (VI. 105). He had a defect in the legs, which he concealed by the length of his garments.

1555. δημοκρατία. “ Ludit quasi etiam apud deos sit democratia, ut Athenis." Blaydes. Other democracies besides that of the Grecian gods are open to the ridicule of sending incompetent barbarians on foreign embassies.

1563. Sur daoiws. Heracles, as Bergler remarks, is made at the outset so fierce for vengeance on the audacious mortal who has intercepted the sacrifices from the gods, whereby they live, in order to heighten the comic effect of his sudden conversion by the appetizing smell of the roasting birds. Peisthetairos, at this moment, is head giving directions to the cook, as if unaware of the presence of Heracles.

1570. dogav ådlkelv, have been adjudged guilty. A technical expression in Attic law. 1571. &.

‘Hpákdes. Peisthetairos pretends to see Heracles now for the first time :- Ah! how do you do, Heracles ?

1574. &halov ....Ankúow, there is no oil in the cruet. The servant comes running in with this message from the kitchen.

1578, 1579. õußplov .... åel, you would hare rain-water always in your marshes (instead of tanks “ut ad aves;" the Greeks ordinarily used either spring-water directly from the fountains, or rain-water caught in the tanks), and you would always pass halcyon days. Halcyon days are the supposed seven fair days in winter in which the halcyon was accustomed to make his appearance.

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1580. αυτοκράτορες, plenipotentiary.

1583. ållà vùv is elliptical. Supply " though not before,” yet now, i. e. if you are at last willing to do what is right.

1587. &. . kalô, on these conditions, I will incite the ministers to dinner.

1592. õptwoiv, gain the power. The force of the aorist, in the oblique moods, is to express the action as single and completed, not frequent or continuous. Therefore, here, not rule, but get power.

1597. Trapedoúv, coming up, or passing along. The advantage promised to the gods is, that, if any mortal swear falsely by them, the crow will pounce upon him and pluck out his eyes.

1600. The barbarian god, unable to speak Greek, utters some unintelligible sounds, which Peisthetairos interprets into giving his consent.

1605. Leveto ....ulontiav, the gods can wait,' and not repay in full. μαποδιδα un átodidq. ulontia is luxury, lust, &c.; also abundance, wastefulness ; here, perhaps, to be constructed as synecdochical, and used adverbially.

1606. åvan pátouev, we will exact. 1610. tiuýv, the value.

1613. oluó el dokei col; have you a fancy for a beating ? Intimating that, unless he is willing to yield the point, he must expect a beating. “Hercules,” says Carey, “ trusting that Triballus will not understand, says this for the sake of raising a laugh at the bar. barian god.” He translates,—“ Triballus, what think you—of being cursed ?

1614. pnoiv .... Trávu, he says that I talk quite right. The subject of Néyelv must be gathered from the context; otherwise it would be the same as that of the finite verb. Again he construes the unintelligible sounds of the barbarian god into an assent to the demand.

. épậs, you are not fond of reconciliation ; your demands are so extravagant, that there is no hope of coming to terms

1621, 1622. ολίγον .. ydurú, I care but little. Cook, you must make the sauce sweet. Peisthetairos puts on an indifferent look, but counts with certainty upon the effect of the order to the cook upon Heracles.

1623. δαιμόνι’ ανθρώπων, my dearest fellow. The comic force of the phrase is heightened by addressing a familiar form of speech among men to a god. 1624. ημείς .... πολεμήσομεν ; there is an allusion to Helen and

; the war of Troy :-Shall we wage a war for one woman?

1631. olóv qe trePLOODitetai, how he is tricking you. Peisthetairos now expounds the Athenian law of inheritance, according to which Heracles, not being the son of Zeus in lawful wedlock, cannot become his heir.

1634. où8° åkapî, not a penny. 1638. érikinpov, successor to an inheritance. A technical term. The argument is drawn from the principle of the Athenian law that

'1620. où ....

with you.

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