Re: Thuc 1.22.3: EUNOIAS

From: Edgar M. Krentz (
Date: Wed Feb 19 1997 - 00:15:29 EST

Ken wrote:

>[22.3] epipons de hurisketo, dioti hoi parontes tois ergois hekastois
>ou tauta peri tn autn elegon, all' hs hekatern tis eunoias mnms
>I have some questions. (EURISKETO is imperfect. Does that mean I
>should translate it as "And I was finding out with difficulty [the
>facts],"? Or, tryin g to be less accurate but smoother, "I was having
>difficulty determining the facts,"? I couldn't find a meaing for
>(EURISKW that seemed to fit well and I wasn't sure how to deal with the
>imperfect. Since we're supposed to abandon the notion of the imperfect
>as continuous action in the past, due to an analysis of verbal aspect, I
>don't know what to do with it.

I have not yet been persuaded that one must give up all notion of past time
with each and every imperfect indicative. Here Thucydides is clearly
referring to something in the past! CONTEXT, CONTEXT, CONTEXT. Don't apply
any grammatical principle as if it were a straight jacket. Language just is
not that neat.

> Second OU TAUTA has me a little stumped. TAUTA is a demonstrative
>pronoun, meaning "these", but as the LCL translation suggest, the
>meaning "the same things" seems more appropriate, but that's not what
>TAUTA means. I think this says "because those who were present were not
>saying these things concerning the events." TAUTA should be referring to
>the facts that Thucydides thinks are correct, but if that's what he
>meant, he should have said so more clearly!!!

Ken, it is not TAUTA but TAU)TA\ = TA AUTA. check your lexicon and learn
why it means "the same things." IOt is actually very clear. Your
translation is not what Thucydides means to say or says. Look up crassis in
your Smyth grammar. This is a good example of a case where breathing,
elision marks, and accents aid in determining meaning.

> Finally, EUNOIAS has me puzzled. LSJ says that EUNOIAN ECHEIN means
>to "wish heartily." that's obviuosly not appropriate here I don't
>think. LCL says "but reports varying according to their championship of
>one side or the other...." I don't see any definition for RUNOIA that
>would support "championship". In fact, I don't see any meanings that
>seem to fit except for the meaning "partially" that might apply, but
>that requires KAT' EUNOIAS. So what is one to do? I had thought that I
>should at some point take classical Greek. I think I've changed my mind
>if this is what there is in store. Thanks.

Figure out how I get the rough translation "as someone of both [sides]
might have good intention or memory."

Edgar Krentz, New Testament OR HOME:
Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
1100 East 55th Street
TEL.: 773-256-0752 FAX: 773-256-0782

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