Friday, July 30, 2010

Who were the Phaeacians?

Reading Homer's Odyssey, I find myself confusing the Phaeacians with the Phoenicians and the Achaeians. My lexica and other references elude this topic except for Georg Autenrieth's 'A Homeric Dictionary' which has, "Φαίηκες: the Phaeacians, a fabulous people related to the gods, dwelling in Scheria, where they lived a life of ease, averse to war and devoted to sea-faring. The ships in which they escort guests to their homes, however distant, are themselves possessed of intelligence to find the way. The names of nearly all the Phaeacians mentioned are significant of the love of ships, not excepting that of Nausicaa [ναῦς means a ship], the most charming of them all...."

Sunday, July 18, 2010

mannjafnaðr and Viking Sexuality

Searching mannjafnaðr on Bing, I found this paper about Viking sexuality and insults :

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Archilochus Iambic fragment #42 : my translation

...through an embrasure
...gonna slip with stealth
--(for I already know and have had
enough of such a plant of another kind)
thinking this deed arises from my nature:
my parsley stalk...
thinking on slipping it to you...
...sprung from under my chlamys...
eager to penetrate...

from this Greek text:
ἰητρ ]τομῆι
ἐσθλὴν γὰρ ἄλλην οἶδα τοιοὐ του φυτοῦ
ἰη σιν ]δοκεω·
]ου λίνου
]ν μενοινιω[

Prof.J.M.Edmonds in his 1931 Loeb edition translated Fragment 42 as:
"For I know of another good cure for such a growth." But his text was:

ἐσθλὴν γὰρ ἄλλην οἶδα τοιούτου φυτοῦ
ἴησιν. (Toup : εἴκασιν) He this prefaces with:
"Sch. Theocr. 2. 48 [ἱππομανές]· . . λέγες γὰρ καὶ Ἀρχίλοχος τὸ φῦμα φυτόν.

Now, according to my reading of Theocritus' verse, τὸ φυτόν refers to an herb
there that acts as a sexual stimulant on horses. I read Archilochus as using this
as a figure for his speaker's penis in his poem.
Prof. Henry Harmon Chamberlain in his 'Late Spring: A Translation of Theocritus',
Harvard, 1936, translates the stanza:

"In Arcady there grows a bitter spurge;
Stallions that crop it and swift mares run wild
Over the mountains; may like madness urge
Delphis, of reason utterly beguiled.
So let him run madly about my door,
So let him quit the gleaming wrestling floor!
O magic wheel! bring my man home to me!"

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Relevance of Latin and Ancient Greek

"The reason we should boost the study of Latin and Greek is that they are
the key to a phenomenal and unsurpassed treasury of literature and history
and philosophy, and we cannot possibly understand our modern world unless we
understand the ancient world that made us all." Boris Johnson in The Telegraph

Thursday, February 18, 2010

nympholepsis (gazing at 'Lake Avernus, Fates, & Golden Bough' by JMW Turner)

So benignant do these dancing Fates appear,

Yet rule in awesome potency o'er all who live;

I was momentarily aMUSEd,

an' ta'en away wi' the Fae.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Tempests on Planet Academe: STEM and the "careful manipulation of metaphor"

This discussion is interesting and of great importance even for us hobbyist amateurs. Don't miss the 'Comments'?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Ἡ ἝΩΣ ἡ θέα AURORA, the Dawn

from 1881 painting by William-Adolphe Bouguereau

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Culture Study : Carthaginian Child Sacrifice

A cutural anthropology study of Phoencian or Punic or Carthaginian child sacrifice, that explores the loaded semantics and politics involved:

So far, I've read to page 22 : "Bernal’s expectation of a static British/Jewish Phoenician identity reveals the appeal of
essentialism — the reduction of peoples to their static essence — one of the broad categories of
ills that he and Said wish to combat. In reference to identity, this essentialism portrays and
understands social and cultural practices and institutions 'as what they are for all time, for
ontological reasons that no empirical matter can either dislodge or alter' (Said 1995 [1978]:70). It
is a distortion that suppresses temporality and 'assumes or attributes an unchanging primordial
ontology to what are the historically contingent products of human or other forms of agency'
(Herzfeld 1998:189). Of the forms of essentialism addressed by Said and Bernal, I summarize two
here: racism, and Orientalism."

'Supposititious', appearing in that below, means " (1)fraudulently substituted as a genuine heir; (2) illegitimate; (3) of the nature of, or based on, a supposition; hypothetical."


Wednesday, February 03, 2010

GANYMED - first stanza with my translation

"Was schläfst du, Bergsohn, liegest in Unmut, schief,
Und frierst am kahlen Ufer, Geduldiger!
Denkst nicht der Gnade du, wenns an den
Tischen die Himmlischen sonst gedürstet?" Friederich Hoelderlin

Why stay you there, mountain boy, sulking askew,
Chilling on the shore so bare, gentle shepherd boy!
Don't you think of that world, where formerly upon
Olympian banquet tables. thirsty was the longing?

Monday, February 01, 2010

The Boy and the Eagle

'Ganymed' by Hermann Hubacher, 1952
on Lake Constance, Zurich, Switzerland

Friday, January 29, 2010

MERCEDEM PACIS - my own Latin poem

Pax Romana gratia iam visa est

sed defectus virium ad secutum

utideo pax idem bello

eti mercedem exiget.

(id est defectus virtutis virilis viriumque)