εἰ πλείονα δ' εἰδείης Σισύφου -> if you were more intelligent than Sisyphus

spiros

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εἰ πλείονα δ' εἰδείης Σισύφου -> if you were more intelligent than Sisyphus (Theognis [6th cent. BCE] 702)
A proverb according to LSJ, what does it mean?

Σίσυφος - Ancient Greek (LSJ)


Πλήθει δ’ ἀνθρώπων ἀρετὴ µία γίνεται ἥδε, πλουτεῖν· τῶν δ’ ἄλλων οὐδὲν ἄρ’ ἦν ὄφελος, οὐδ’ εἰ σωφροσύνην µὲν ἔχοις Ῥαδαµάνθυος αὐτοῦ, πλείονα δ’ εἰδείης Σισύφου Αἰολίδεω, ὅστε καὶ ἐξ Ἀίδεω πολυϊδρίηισιν ἀνῆλθεν πείσας Περσεφόνην αἱµυλίοισι λόγοις, ἥτε βροτοῖς παρέχει λήθην βλάπτουσα νόοιο… … οὐδ’ εἰ ψεύδεα µὲν ποιοῖς ἐτύµοισιν ὁµοῖα, γλῶσσαν ἔχων ἀγαθὴν Νέστορος ἀντιθέου, ὠκύτερος δ’ εἴησθα πόδας ταχεῶν Ἁρπυιῶν καὶ παίδων Βορέω, τῶν ἄφαρ εἰσὶ πόδες.
ἀλλὰ χρὴ πάντας γνώµην ταύτην καταθέσθαι, ὡς πλοῦτος πλείστην πᾶσιν ἔχει δύναµιν.


To most men this is the one excellence [ἀρετή]: to be rich. Nothing else is worth anything, not if you had the good judgement of Rhadamanthus, nor if you were more intelligent than Sisyphus the son of Aeolus, who with his cleverness escaped from Hades, having persuaded Persephone with flattering words – Persephone who gives men oblivion by damaging their minds… Not if you could make lies seem true, having the tongue of godlike Nestor, not if you were faster on foot than the swift harpies, or the sons of Boreas, whose feet are so quick. No; it is necessary for all to learn this wisdom: wealth has the greatest power among all men.


https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/145054491.pdf
« Last Edit: 11 Feb, 2021, 04:00:42 by billberg23 »


billberg23

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Hudson-Williams' commentary to Theognis 702f.:
Sisyphus : the type of shrewdness and cunning ; he is often mentioned in connexion with Odysseus, who was sometimes regarded  as his son (Soph. Philoctetes 417) ... Sisyphides = Ulixes Ov. Ars. Am. 3, 313. ' Ulixi Sisyphique prudentiam' Cic. Tusc. 1. 41 ...  Sisyphus instructed his wife not to give his body burial. In the underworld he complained of her neglect, and persuaded Pluto to let him return and punish her. He then refused to leave the upper world, and Hermes was sent to fetch him down.
« Last Edit: 11 Feb, 2021, 04:02:36 by billberg23 »



 

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