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Page:Comedies of Aristophanes (Hickie 1853) vol1.djvu/179

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1108—1130.
163
THE CLOUDS.

you train him properly; on the one side able for petty suits; but train his other jaw able for the more important causes.

Soc. Make yourself easy; you shall receive him back a clever sophist.

Strep. Nay, rather, pale and wretched.[1] [Exeunt Socrates, Strepsiades, and Phidippides.]

Cho. Go ye then:[2] but I think that you will repent of these proceedings. We wish to speak about the judges, what they will gain, if at all they justly[3] assist this Chorus. For in the first place, if you wish to plough up your fields in spring, we win rain for yon first; but for the others afterwards. And then we will protect the fruits,[4] and the vines, so that neither drought afflict them, nor excessive wet weather. But if any mortal dishonour us who are goddesses, let him consider what evils he will suffer at our hands, obtaining neither wine, nor any thing else from his farm. For when his olives and vines sprout, they shall be cut down; with such slings will we smite them. And if we see him making brick, we will rain; and we will smash the tiles of his roof with round hailstones. And if he himself, or any one of his kindred or friends, at any time marry, we will rain the whole night; so that he will probably wish rather to have been even in Egypt,[5] than to have judged badly. [Enter Strepsiades with a meal-sack on his shoulder.]

  1. Mitchell, who follows Dindorf in assigning this speech (with the reading of ἔγωγε, instead of οἴμαι γε) to Strepsiades, thus paraphrases the passage: "Nay rather, instead of δεξιὸν, let me find him ὠχρὸν and κακοδαίμονα; in other words, the exact counterpart of Chærephon and yourself."
  2. "Χωρεῖτέ νυν, addressed to father and son conjointly, who now retire from the stage. The σοι is to be applied to Strepsiades, as he turns his back on the Chorus." Mitch.
  3. See Liddell's Lex. voc. ἐκ, iii. 6.
  4. Brunck's edition gives εἶτα τὸν καρπὸν τεκούσας ἀμπέλους φυλάξομεν. But it is an invariable rule in the Greek language that the leading noun (what ought to be taken up first) should have the article, the other not. This solecism is avoided in Dindorf's edition.
  5. Where rain seldom falls. Perhaps Bergler is nearer the truth, in supposing the allusion to glance at the evil repute of the Egyptians. The aorist infinitive retains its proper force as a past tense in the construction of the accusative with the infinitive and an article, as vs. 268, and after verba declarandi et putandi, as Vesp. 1422, 1447, and sometimes, as here, after βούλομαι, Cf. Ran. 673. Krüger, Gr. Gr. § 53, 6, obs. 9.