συμπεφύκασι γὰρ αἱ ἀρεταὶ τῷ ζῆν ἡδέως (Epicurus' Letter to Menoeceus via Diogenes Laertius 10.132.10) -> The virtues are part and parcel of the stress-free life

trotsky

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I'm interested in the first bit of the final sentence, it's taken from Epicurus' Letter to Menoeceus (DL X 132). I've looked at a few scholarly translations, here are two representative ones:

"For the virtues have grown into one with a pleasant life"

"For the virtues are naturally linked with living pleasurably"

Which is the best one? In particular, is there any suggestion of the two things growing to be the same thing, or just very closely tied?
« Last Edit: 25 Dec, 2016, 21:45:59 by spiros »


billberg23

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"Have grown into one" is a misleading translation, since the verb συμφύω is generally used to mean "grow onto," as a grafted branch grows onto a tree.  On the other hand, "are naturally linked with" misses the point that the stress-free life (τὸ ζῆν ἡδέως) is predicated on, and does not merely accompany, the virtues.  Hence the rest of Epicurus' sentence, … καὶ τὸ ζῆν ἡδέως τούτων ἐστὶν ἀχώριστον: "… and the stress-free life is inseparable from those virtues."
Welcome to the Forum, trotsky!
« Last Edit: 18 Dec, 2016, 07:26:42 by billberg23 »



 

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