The Poetic Plural of Greek Tragedy in the Light of Homeric Usage

The Poetic Plural of Greek Tragedy in the Light of Homeric Usage

Volume: 19
Copyright Date: 1910
Published by: Cornell University Press
Pages: 170
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  • Book Info
    The Poetic Plural of Greek Tragedy in the Light of Homeric Usage
    Book Description:

    The subject of the poetic plural has received limited attention in Greek Grammars. In this work, Horace Leonard Jones investigates with a fair degree of completeness the representative uses of the poetic plural. It abounds in Greek Tragedy and is in fact a marked characteristic there. Is it a creation of Tragedy? Or did it receive impulses from earlier sources? It is Jones's goal here to trace out in Homer, so far as they occur, the uses of the poetic plural as found in Tragedy, and to show the energetic progression of the plural tendency in the latter-from Aeschylus to Euripides.

    eISBN: 978-0-8014-6661-8
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. None)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. i-iii)
    (pp. 1-8)

    The subject here considered has naturally received limited attention in the Greek Grammars. Kühner¹ refers to the more important uses of the poetic plural as follows : “Die Dichter gebrauchen den Plural oft um den Ausdruck zu amplifizieren (Pluralis Maiestaticus),” adding such words as σκήpτρα, θρόνος μέτωpα, νώτα, θάνατοι, τοv̀ς τεκόντας (patrem).

    Brugmann² briefly mentions the matter, saying : “Der Plural, um das Komplizierte der Erscheinungsform einer Sache anzudeuten, findet sich besonders bei Ausdrücken für Massiges wie kρε̕α, αguara , für Geräte und Baulichkeiten, wie τόξα, α̋ρματα, Sω̕ftara , für Örtlichkeiten wie kρεα, αίματα. . . . ., für Körperteile...

    (pp. 9-82)

    Mention is here made of a large class of nouns whose plural gives a sense of indefiniteness, vagueness—suggesting usually the parts that go to make up the whole.

    (a) Place, region.

    The most frequent Homeric words are οχθαι, ήϊόνες (Attic ήόνες), άκταί, λιμένες. The following figures show the persistence in general of Homeric influence :

    (I). οχθαι¹.

    Cf. ∆ 487‚ ή μεν τάζόμενη κεΐται ποταμοίο παρ' οχθας, with Απt ΙΙ32, Νυσαι'ωι/ όρεων Κισσηρεις οχθαι.

    In the latter case the word probably appears in an original meaning—“hills,”² and therefore is not dualistic in origin.

    The lone plural use in...

  5. CHAPTER I. PART TWO. Abstract Nouns.
    (pp. 83-103)

    Of the words following only six occur in Homer : φοναι,¹ φόνοι, θάνατοι, αίματα,² μόρου, πληγαί. Of these only φοναί, φόνοι, πληγαί and θάνατοι are found in the plural there. φόνοι is a plurale tan- tum both there and elsewhere. The lone plural of θάνατοι has a particular meaning,³ while that of φόνοι⁴ too is probably a true plural.

    The primary impulse arising in Homer - in φοναί‚ apparently—effects marked traces in Tragedy, where the poetic usage is seen not only in Homeric words but also in later formations as the tables under this head show.

    ¹ Limited to...

    (pp. 104-126)

    Thus far, attention has been paid to the force of the plural when used for the singular, and the different poetic purposes the same serves, only occasional references however being made to the question of metre. Metre should certainly not be neglected in the study of the subject as has been the case in the dissertations of Juhl, Kummerer and Volp ; for metrical influence is to be seen both in Homer and Tragedv.If the poet of Tragedy employed the plural purposely in every case to give a sense of vagueness, fullness, complexity, or for some other rhetorical or dramatic...

  7. CHAPTER II. The Pronoun.
    (pp. 127-140)

    As an introduction to the uses of the first person plural pronoun for the singular in Tragedy, it is well to consider the extent and force of such uses in Homer. I have noted twelve instances².Among them, three uses of the first person plural pronoun for the singular may be recognized, which apparently represent the logical development of the plural as meaning one of the person out of the true plural.The steps are : (i ) Pluralis Societatis, (2) Pluralis Modestiae, (3) Pluralis Maiestatis. We may suppose that at first the ήmEίs associates in thought others with the έγώ -the...

    (pp. 141-164)

    In Homer the material is scanty, and indeed what is found is related to but few of the uses in Tragedy.

    Γ 49 : άπίης γαίης, νυόν άνδρων αίχμητάων—

    (Helen) from a distant land, daughter-in-law of warlike men.

    The generalization makes Helen the daughter-in-law of the Greeks as a nation. There is added force in that the verse is spondaic. To this example may be added A 128, where the plural pronoun is used for the sake of indefiniteness :

    έκ γάρ σφεας χειρων φύγον ήνία σιγαλόεντα—

    For the smooth reins had slipped out of their hands.

    The pronoun refers...

    (pp. 165-167)
  10. THE Cornell Studies in Classical Philology
    (pp. 168-168)