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Pages of Poetics

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Euripides substitutes thoinatai, 'feasts on,' for esthiei, 'feeds on.'

Again, in the line,

nun de m'eon oligos te kai outidanos kai aeikes,

Yet a small man, worthless and unseemly,

the difference will be felt if we substitute the common words,

nun de m'eon mikros te kai asthenikos kai aeides.

Yet a little fellow, weak and ugly.

Or, if for the line,

diphron aeikelion katatheis oligen te trapezan,

Setting an unseemly couch and a meager table,

we read,

diphron mochtheron katatheis mikran te trapezan.

Setting a wretched couch and a puny table.

Or, for eiones booosin, 'the sea shores roar,' eiones krazousin,

'the sea shores screech.'

Again, Ariphrades ridiculed the tragedians for using phrases which

no one would employ in ordinary speech: for example, domaton apo,

'from the house away,' instead of apo domaton, 'away from the

house;' sethen, ego de nin, 'to thee, and I to him;' Achilleos peri,

'Achilles about,' instead of peri Achilleos, 'about Achilles;' and the

like. It is precisely because such phrases are not part of the current

idiom that they give distinction to the style. This, however, he

failed to see.

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