ORPHIC FRAGMENT 78

OTTO KERN

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SUMMARY: Phanes has golden wings, which flutter this way and that.

78. (65) σχόλιον Ἑρμείου επὶ Φαίδρου Πλάτωνος 246 e (142, 13 Couvr.):

πρώτωι γὰρ τούτωι (sc. τῶι Φάνητι) ἡ θεολογία παρέχει τοὺς ἵππους, ἅτε πρώτωι ἐκφοιτήσαντι τῶν οἰκείων ἀρχῶν, ἐπεὶ καὶ πρώτως ἐν τούτωι γίνεται γάμος· καὶ ἁπλῶς ὧι ἐνέργειαν δίδωσι, τούτωι καὶ ἵππους παρέχει. αὐτῶι δὲ τούτωι πρώτωι τῶι δεσπότηι Φάνητι καὶ πτέρυγας δίδωσι·

χρυσείαις πτερύγεσσι φορεύμενος ἔνθα καὶ ἔνθα.


“The theology presents horses to him (Φάνης) first, inasmuch as he was the first having come out from the familial rulers, and seeing that in him a marriage is born. And to the one who offers action purely, he also provides horses to him. And Phánîs, of his own free will, offers his wings to this destined lord:

‘with golden wings fluttering this way and that.’ ” (trans. by the author)

Compare in the same text σχόλιον Ἑρμείου επὶ Φαίδρου Πλάτωνος 246 a (p. 122, 19 Couvr.):

οὐ πρῶτος δὲ ὁ Πλάτων ἡνίοχον καὶ ἵππους παρέλαβεν, ἀλλὰ πρὸ αὐτοῦ οἱ ἔνθεοι τῶν ποιητῶν, Ὅμηρος (Ἰλιὰς Ὁμήρου Θ 438), Ὀρφεύς, Παρμενίδης (Diels I3 148 fr. 1,1)· αλλ’ υπ’ εκείνων μὲν ἅτε ἐνθέων ἄνευ αἰτίας (αἰτία Ast) εἴρηται· ἐνθουσιώντες γάρ ἔλεγον.

“But Plátôn (Πλάτων) was not the first to have ascertained such by the charioteer and horses, but before him, those inspired poets...Homer (Ἰλιὰς Ὁμήρου Θ 438), Orphéfs (Ὀρφεύς), and Parmænídîs (Παρμενίδης) (Diels I3 148 fr. 1,1) also. But those (poets) indeed, from divine inspiration (seemingly) spoke without cause; but (rather) they are speaking from divine inspiration.” (trans. by the author)

Herm. 505 n. 3. 4; Lobeck I 491; Kern De Theogon. 49 and Herm. XXIII 1888, 482 n. 1; Gruppe Suppl. 731 n. 1; Immisch N. Jahrb. XXXV 1915, 566 n. 19; Pohlenz Goett. Gel Anz. 1916, 273 n. 1.

Ὄρνιθες Ἀριστοφάνους 696 (fragment 1):

Ἔρως ὁ ποθεινός, στίλβων (v. fragment 86) νῶτον πτερύγοιν χρυσαῖν, εἰκὼς ἀνεμώκεσι δίναις.

“much desired Ǽrôs (Ἔρως), with his back gleaming (v. fragment 86) with golden wings, like the swift gust of a whirlwind” (trans. by the author)

ὕμνος Ὀρφέως Πρωτογόνου 6.2 (fragment 87):

ὠογενῆ, χρυσέησιν ἀγαλλόμενον πτερύγεσσιν,

“egg-born, rejoicing in his golden wings!” (trans. by the author)

ὕμνος Ὀρφέως Νότου (the South Wind) 82.2:

ὠκείαις πτερύγεσσι δονούμενον ἔνθα καὶ ἔνθα

“with your swift wings fluttering hither and thither” (trans. by the author)

Compare Ὀρφέως Ἀργοναυτικά 340 (342, 347 or 503 in different editions of this text):

λαιψηρούς τ' ανέμους, αύραις μίγα χρυσεοτάρσαις

“the nimble winds, with cool breezes mingled with golden-winged (breezes).” (trans. by the author)


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