Author Topic: ὠς σωφρονέστατα πράξομεν ἐως ἂν αἰσχυνώμεθα τούς γε κρείττους.  (Read 788 times)

jmorsay

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ὠς σωφρονέστατα πράξομεν ἐως ἂν αἰσχυνώμεθα τούς γε κρείττους.

My translation: We will do the most prudent things untill we should feel ashamed before the better men.

Is this correct?

thank you



billberg23

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1.  ὠς σωφρονέστατα:  I know it looks like an adjective, JM, but that's just the way superlative adverbs are formed in Greek — by using the neuter plural of the superlative adjective.  Alone, σωφρονέστατα means "most prudently."  With ὠς, it means "as prudently as possible."  You can do that with ὠς (or ὅτι) + any superlative adjective or adverb to mean "as ... as possible."  "As beautiful as possible," for example:  ὠς καλλίστη, or ὅτι καλλίστη.
So the first part of the sentence means "We shall act as prudently as possible."

2.  Something is wrong with the second part of the sentence, because "until we feel ashamed before at least (γε) the better men" doesn't make logical sense, does it?  If you're acting prudently, you should not feel ashamed, right?  Something tells me there's a misprint here, maybe a missing μή (or οὐκ, if Hansen wasn't on his grammatical toes!).
Τί δέ τις; Τί δ' οὔ τις; Σκιᾶς ὄναρ ἄνθρωπος. — Πίνδαρος

jmorsay

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This is not a misprint.
There is no μή or οὐκ.

I don't think you should feel ashamed if you act prudently.
I think henson made a misstake.
 
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billberg23

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Here's another possibility, JM.  Ἕως ἄν + subjunctive can also be used to mean "so long as," "as long as," or "while."  For this sense, the main verb should be future (as it is here), and the action of the ἕως ἂν-clause usually lies in the future.  So we could make sense this way:  "We will act as prudently as possible as long as we are feeling ashamed at least before the better men."  
Maybe Hansen wasn't mistaken, after all!
« Last Edit: 09 Dec, 2010, 16:57:51 by billberg23 »
Τί δέ τις; Τί δ' οὔ τις; Σκιᾶς ὄναρ ἄνθρωπος. — Πίνδαρος

jmorsay

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