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begin : THE GREEK LYRIC POErS t "AGAIN" by C. M. WELLS This however is precisely how a number of the Greek lyric poets did "Love onee again makes me tremble, the looser of limbs, bitter-sweet, irresistible ereatU1'e." That is Sappho. Aleman and Ibyeus both open with the same three words: And: by the Cyprian's will flows sweetly down and melts "Love once again with liquid glances from beneath dark eyelids drives me with spells of every sort into the infinite net . Truly I shiver at his coming, like a horse in its old age, going against its will cars to the race." Anaereon has &'1~""-( no less than five times in the opening line of a poem in C. M. WELLS connection with Eros (rnG 358, 376, 400, 413, 428), so that we find four poets all beginning poems with the same "Once again I have fallen in love", three of them in the selfsame phrase. Sappho, in addition to the f'ragment already quoted, has ~'l~"T(. thrice in connection with love in one poem (the hymn to Aphrodite, LP 1), and once in another, joined with 11".51)0(, desire (LP 22, 11), so that she, like Anacreon, uses the word five times in amatory contexts. Elsewhere she has it four more times2 and Anacreon at least four, possibly seven.3 Yet ..5.,.( and &,3.,..( ~~~co~~ :~=i;~i~~t~~m:di~ot~:h:~o~e:x~:\~~~~~SW~:de:~;~ ~~:\~ic;~4 It is clear that b'1!.T( is a favourite with both Sappho and Anacreon, but why is it so often associated with love? B. Snell has rightly pointed out that to say, "I have fallen in love again", is to evince some capacity for detaclunent. In discussing Sappllo's hymn to Aphrodite, with its triple ""'I~"Tt, he says: "The experience which produced these verses is made to extend beyond the scope of the present to a point twice removed in time. There are other poems which show that Sappho visualised her sensations sub specie aeternitatis," And he cites the fragment LP 130 which we have already quoted, He follows this up with the similar f'ragment f'rom Aleman (PMG 59(a)), which, he claims, proves that the 'again' is "a feature typical of archaic poetry. "5 But even if this is so, the word "typical" begs the question: ~ do Aleman, Sappho, Ibycus and Anacreon all use i"l~T( like this? For even if it is "typical", even if they are all imitating one another, it suggests that "I am in love again" is something which they all need to say, that all are alike in recognising love as a changing and recurrent emotion, This implication has, however, been challenged , Snell, for instance, suggests that in Anacreon, "the 'again' becomes a stereotyped fornrula of opening lines .,. the exordiwn 'Again I love .,,' has lost its original force .,' when Anacreon repeats five times over: 'Again I have fallen in love .. ,', we suspect his heart is not in it," Bowra challenges this, pointing out, "Sappho uses hardly less often, and we should hardly make the same cOllmlerit of her";6 but he is no more willing than Snell to admit that Anacreon really means to celebrate a new love on five separate occasions, and he goes on: "It looks as if S,,\~T( did not quite have the full force of our 'again', but simply drew attention to a new situation," Edmonds in his Loeb edition appears tacitly to agree, for in all but one of the places where "'~'I'\ or b'l;;'" occurs in connection with love, he translates it "Lo~" or "Lo now~ "7 The significant exception is in the passage of Ibycus quoted above, where he trW'lslates it "Yet again" ,8 But there he could scarcely do otherwise, since it is the point of the poem that Ibycus has fallen in love ~, and is complaining about it. Why then should ~"~"T{ not mean "again" in the other, similar passages? There is no passage in which ..~Tt or ,,,:'"1"1. occurs in early lyriC, iambic and elegiac poetry, it is impossible to give the word the meaning "again", and in many places of course...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1913-5416
Print ISSN
1496-9343
Pages
pp. 1-11
Launched on MUSE
2018-04-04
Open Access
No
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