Labored in Papyrus Leaves: Perspectives on an Epigram Collection Attributed to Posidippus (P.Mil.Vogl. VIII 309)

  Acosta-Hughes, Benjamin, Elizabeth Kosmetatou, and Manuel Baumbach, eds. 2004. Labored in Papyrus Leaves: Perspectives on an Epigram Collection Attributed to Posidippus (P.Mil.Vogl. VIII 309). Hellenic Studies Series 2. Washington, DC: Center for Hellenic Studies.

6. Doricisms in the New and Old Posidippus [1]

Alexander Sens, Georgetown University


Posidippus AB 139 (8 GP = AP XII 131) is a prayer for Aphrodite to favor a woman named Callistium:

Κύπρον τε Κύθηρα καὶ Μίλητον ἐποιχνεῖς
     καὶ καλὸν Συρίης ἱπποκρότου δάπεδον,
ἔλθοις ἵλαος Καλλιστίῳ, τὸν ἐραστὴν
     οὐδέποτ᾿ οἰκείων ὦσεν ἀπὸ προθύρων.

You who visit Cyprus and Cythera and Miletus
     and the beautiful ground of Syria resounding with horses,
come propitious to Callistium, who never
     pushed her lover out of the doors of her own house.

As it survives in the single manuscript witness, the dialect coloring of the poem is inconsistent. In the opening verse the feminine nominative singular of the relative pronoun appears three times in the Doric form ἅ [2] but in the third verse the manuscript transmits ἥ. The text of the rest of the poem is consonant with the latter rather than the former: thus the second verse has epic/Ionic Συρίης rather than Doric (and Attic) Συρίας; and the third, ἐραστήν rather than ἐραστάν. [3] Gow and Page, who make the sensibly conservative decision to print the paradosis, nonetheless note that they find it “difficult to believe” that the poet could have written both ἅ and ἥ in the same epigram, and incline toward replacing the Doric pronouns on the ground that Posidippus “does not favour Doric.” Such uncertainties about dialect are common in our texts of Hellenistic poetry, and the difficulty of resolving them in any satisfactory way is compounded by a number of considerations. The category “Doric” is not monolithic but includes a variety of widely dispersed local dialects, each with its own phonological peculiarities. By the end of the fourth century, moreover, spoken and literary forms of the dialect regularly combined traditional characteristics of Doric phonology and morphology with elements drawn from other dialects, including the Attic koine (especially in the case of the spoken language) [4] and (in the case of poetry, at least) the complex, predominantly Ionic literary language of the early epic hexameter poems. Hellenistic poets, moreover, often overlaid Doric phonology on epic vocabulary and morphology. As a result of all this, the Doric found in Hellenistic poetry is highly variable. In fact, the evidence that was available even before the publication of P.Mil.Vogl. VIII 309 shows that the earliest texts of some Hellenistic poems had both Doric and epic/Ionic forms side by side, [5] and indeed Callimachus in Iambus 13 seems to justify his own use of precisely such a combination of dialects (fr. 203.17–18 Pf. τοῦτ᾿ ἐμπ[έ]πλεκται καὶ λαλευσ|[ . . ] . . [| Ἰαστὶ καὶ Δωριστὶ καὶ τὸ σύμμικ|το̣ν̣[.). [6]

Dialectal Characteristics of the Corpus of Posidippus

Despite the predominance of Attic-Ionic, however, both the previously known and the new, expanded corpus of Posidippus contain poems in which at least some “Doric” coloring is in evidence. The paradosis of AB 141 (APl [A] 68), a short ecphrastic poem in which the speaker claims not to be able to tell whether a portrait he is viewing depicts Aphrodite or Berenice, uses forms with Doric alpha (ἅδ(ε), Βερενίκας and ὁμοιοτέραν), but the epigram may be by Asclepiades, to whom it is alternatively ascribed by the lemma, rather than Posidippus. [13] Two other instances in which the witnesses preserve α rather than Attic-Ionic η for inherited /a:/ in the “old” Posidippus involve references to the Muse. At Posidippus AB 123 (1.3–4 GP), the Doric form of the article in the phrase ἅ τε Κλεάνθους | μοῦσα, occurs in close conjunction with the markedly Attic contraction of ε+ο to ου (Κλεάνθουϲ) [14] and with the Attic-Ionic pronoun ἡμῖν, while at 23.2 GP, a poem also ascribed to Meleager, [15] the speaker refers to Μοῦσαν ἐμὰν ἱκέτιν in the context of complaining of his desire for a woman whose name has the apparently Attic form Ἡλιοδώρας (genitive). [16] The function of the Doric coloring in these epigrams is not immediately clear—Cleanthes’ surviving fragments do not show any trace of Doric coloring—but the passages illustrate an important feature of the majority of the Doricisms in the entire corpus of Posidippus. Whereas the use of α as a reflex of inherited /a:/ is a common feature of the entire Doric group, the various local dialects treat the products of contraction and compensatory lengthening of /e/ and /o/ in different ways. In some dialects, which constitute a group Ahrens called “Doris mitior,” secondary long /e/ and /o/ are represented as ει and ου respectively, but in a handful of others (which Ahrens calls “Doris severior”), they converge with the inherited long vowels and are written as η and ω. [17] The vast majority of instances of secondary long /e/ and /o/ in the corpus of Posidippus are written ει and ου, as in the case of Μοῦσα (rather than Μῶσα [e.g. Alcman PMG 8; 14; 28; 30; 31; 46; 59 Page; scholium to Theocritus 1.9, p. 34 Wendel]) in 1.4 GP and 23.2 GP.

Other than these passages, the only instance of Doric coloring in the “old” Posidippus occurs in a poem also found on the new papyrus. AB 65 contains the text of an epigram ascribed to Posidippus at APl[A] 119 (= 18 GP):

Λύϲιππε,⌋ πλάϲτα Ϲικυώ⌊νιε, θαρϲ⌋αλέα χείρ,
     δάϊε τεχνί⌋τα, πῦρ τοι ὁ χα⌊λκὸϲ ὁρ⌋ῆι,
ὃν κατ᾿ Ἀλεξά⌋νδρου μορφᾶϲ ἔθε̣υ̣· οὔ τι γε μεμπτοὶ
     Πέρϲαι· ϲυγγνώ⌋μα βουϲὶ λέοντα φυγεῖν.

In addition to this epigram, a number of other poems on the papyrus show aspects of Doric coloring. As is to be expected, the most obvious and consistent marker of Doric in the epigrams is the presence of alpha rather than eta as the reflex of inherited /a:/. Because this feature was the most recognizable feature of all forms of Doric, literary Doric from an early period sometimes generalized it even to cases where Attic-Ionic eta represents not /a:/ but /e:/, for which Doric properly uses η. Although it is often difficult to tell whether analogically generated forms of this sort are original or the product of transmission, papyrological evidence shows that many such forms were represented in the tradition at a very early stage and may thus be original. The phenomenon, however, seems largely foreign to the new Posidippus. The only plausible example occurs at AB 87.3, where the original copyist seems to have written the alpha of [πο]λυθρύλατον over the eta he produced initially. Adjectives in -τος from verbs in -έω properly terminate in -ητος in Doric (e.g., Pindar Olympian 1.21 ἀκίνητον; 7.25 ἀναρίθμητοι; Theocritus 14.6 ἀνυπόδητος, 48 ἀρίθμητοι), although hyperdoric -ατος is occasionally attested for adjectives of this sort in the manuscript tradition of both choral lyric (e.g. Pindar Isthmian 5.6 ὠκυδίνατος) and Hellenistic bucolic (e.g. Bion fr. 2.15; Adonis 58 τριπόθατος) [22] , and some at least are probably authentic. [23] Posidippus seems to have used a “proper” Doric form of a comparable adjective at AB 64.4, where the editors’ [ἀδό]νητοϲ is highly likely (despite their unnecessary puzzlement about why Posidippus has not written -ατοϲ; cf. above). Although it is impossible to exclude the possibility that Posidippus wrote πολυθρύλατον at AB 87.3, the most economical explanation is that the form is a hyperdoric miscorrection by the copyist after he wrote the proper form πολυθρύλητον. If this is the case, then despite the small size of the sample, it seems reasonable to conclude that Posidippus understood and was attentive to the difference between Doric α = /a:/ and η = /e:/.

Besides those cases in which Doric alpha is used in place of Attic-Ionic eta, the new papyrus contains only a few traces of other distinctly Doric features. The first-person pronoun ἁμές and the first-person plural verbal ending -μες occur several times each, but only in the ἱππικά (AB 87.1 and AB 88.1 ἁμέϲ; [cf. AB 75.1]; AB 88.2 νικῶμεϲ; AB 87.2 ἀγάγομ[ε]ϲ). [24] With two notable exceptions, the secondary long /e/ and /o/ sounds are represented as ει and ου, as in Attic-Ionic and the “mild” Doric dialects, even in forms that show other features of Doric. [25] At AB 64.2, however, the aorist ἠργάϲατο appears in an ecphrastic epigram on a statue of the Cretan hero Idomeneus by the Cretan sculptor Kresilas. Although the augmented first syllable of this verb is at least sometimes treated as ἠ- rather than εἰ- in Attic and the koine, [26] the form—if it is in fact what Posidippus wrote [27] — would also be appropriate to the overall Doric coloring of the epigram, which seems to have γαρύει, Μηριόνα, and δάν. [28] Other than in this poem, the only instances in which η and ω represent secondary long /e/ and /o/ occur in an epitaph in which Menoitios, the dead man who is the purported speaker, explicitly claims to be from Crete. The augmented aorist ἠάϲατε (= Attic-Ionic εἰάσατε) at the end of the first verse shows the “severe” Doric treatment of the first syllable and is in fact attested in an inscribed epitaph of Doric coloring from the first century CE (GVI 969.2). [29] Similarly, Φιλάρχω is the only example in the papyrus of -ω instead of ου, and—despite the tendency of proper names to retain special dialectal characteristics—must be considered a particularly marked Doricism.

It is important to note, however, that even if the severe Doricisms in these two epigrams are intended to suggest actual features of Cretan speech, any mimetic effect they produce remains somewhat stylized inasmuch as the poet makes no attempt to capture all the peculiarities of Cretan speech. Moreover, the poems also contain forms apparently alien not only to Cretan but to Doric as a whole. Thus the first verse of the Idomeneus-statue poem has, in addition to the appropriately epic form of the adjective χάλκειον, the Attic demonstrative ἐκεῖνον, a word found also in an otherwise Doric context at AB 68.5, rather than κῆνοϲ, the form used in Crete and elsewhere, or τῆνοϲ. [33] Together with severe Doric Φιλάρχω and ἠάϲατε, the Menoetius-epigram contains εἰμι rather than ἠμι, as well as several forms in which η rather than Doric α appears. Indeed, the “Doric” used by Posidippus throughout the papyrus may be understood as an artificial creation influenced by a number of literary traditions. Thus, if (as seems likely) the editors are correct to supplement [εἰν] at AB 85.4, the preposition is best explained as an epicising admixture in a purely literary language rather than as a reflection of the way actual people spoke. Like Pindar and other lyric poets, Posidippus uses πρῶτοϲ (AB 68.5; AB 88.1) rather than Doric πρᾶτος; Theocritus, by contrast, appears to favor the latter in his Doric poems. [34] Characteristic of both Pindar and Theocritus, on the other hand, is the use of the cardinal numbers τρεῖϲ at AB 88.1 and τέϲϲαρεϲ at AB 75.1 (as opposed to τρῖϲ//τρῆϲ and τέτορεϲ) alongside such forms as Doric εἵλομε<ϲ> and ἁμέϲ. These cases are more complicated than that of εἰν, however, since Attic-Ionic elements seem also to have been characteristic of the Doric koine that had developed by the end of the fourth century. [35]

Reading Doricisms in the New Posidippus

The epigrams in which Doric forms occur are not uniformly distributed throughout the papyrus but are instead restricted to the section containing epigrams on statues (ἀνδριαντοποιικά); to the section containing poems on the equestrian victories (ἱππικά); and to the last extant section, labeled τρόποι; elsewhere the only forms with identifiably Doric coloring occur at AB 47.1, where the speaking tomb calls its occupant Ὀναϲαγορᾶτι<ν>, despite using ἥ(τιϲ) as the relative pronoun to refer to her throughout the epigram, and at 94.4 AB, where μίκκος may also be a proper name. [38] The vast majority of these Doric-colored poems occur in the ἱππικά, and these appear to conform to an interesting pattern. Bastianini and Gallazzi may be correct to suggest that the relatively high number of poems in Doric in this section has something to do with the prominence of the Peloponnese and of the projection of the power of the Lagid dynasty at the Peloponnesian athletic competitions, but the association of Doric with epinician lyric also makes it appropriate for poems celebrating equestrian victories. [39] It is crucial to note, however, that only poems for Olympic victories appear in Doric, whereas the dialect of the epigrams on the outcome of Pythian, Isthmian, and Nemean contests is consistently epic/Ionic. The only example of a Doric form among the latter group of poems occurs at AB 86.4, where the narrator refers to himself as Εὐβώταν, but given the use of Ὀναϲαγορᾶτι<ν> at AB 47.1, this sort of dialect coloring in a proper name may have been felt as a special case and thus not strongly marked. [40] Conversely, with two clear exceptions, the poems on Olympic victories for which there are unambiguous markers of dialect have Doric coloring.

The dialectal distinction between poems on Olympic victories and those on all others becomes particularly striking when one considers AB 81.1–2, where the marked reference to the “Dorian” parsley (Δ]ωρικὰ φύλλα ϲελίνων) awarded for a Nemean victory stands in striking juxtaposition to the Attic-Ionic form κεφαλήν. Why the equestrian poems should for the most part divide neatly by dialect is unclear. The only exceptions occur at AB 83 and AB 78. The only clear dialectal marker in the first of these is μνῆμ(α) at AB 83.2. [41] The epigram, in which the supposed speaker is a victorious Thessalian horse, introduces a series of three poems involving Thessalians. The next epigram (AB 85), celebrating an Olympic victory by a Thessalian named Phylopidas, contains no certain dialectal marking, but the following poem, on an Olympic victory by Amyntas of Thessaly, contains a number of Doric forms. More can be said about AB 78, a long epigram that celebrates the Olympic achievements of Lagid royalty, culminating in the Olympic chariot victory of Berenike II. [42] This poem belongs to a sequence of five epigrams, all with Ionic coloring, for victories by the queen at various athletic contests. The victory celebrated in AB 78 seems to have taken place in 248 BCE, and the epigram must thus have been composed relatively late in Posidippus’ life, perhaps at a chronological distance from the other Olympic victory poems, and almost certainly from those celebrating the Olympic victories by other members of the Lagid dynasty.

ιδομενεια pap.

Willingly praise that bronze Idomeneus
     Of Cresilas. How precisely he made it, we know well.
Idomeneus cries: “Good Meriones, run!
     … having long been immobile (?).”

Like a number of passage of early Hellenistic poetry, the epigram depends for its point on the ecphrastic topos in which the viewer of a work of art asserts that it would be wholly realistic but for its lack of a voice, [48] so that the attribution of direct speech to the statue of Idomeneus suggests that Cresilas’ piece has transcended even this limitation. [49] In this context, as we have seen, the Doric coloring of the words placed in the mouth of the Cretan hero Idomeneus underscores the realism of the statue. By attributing such language to Idomeneus, Posidippus “brings to life” a character whose existence was established for the poet only through his presence in the Homeric poems. [50] Read in this light, the epigram may be seen as engaging in a project of hyper-realism that departs from and implicitly rejects the epic manner of representing individuals, who in the Homeric poems all speak a relatively undifferentiated and elevated epic-Ionic Kunstsprache. [51] This departure from Homeric practice is typically Hellenistic, but may come as a surprise after the first verse, which contains no Doric elements and leaves the initial impression that—as might be expected in a poem about a Homeric hero—the epigram will have an Ionic or (given ἐκεῖνον) at least Attic-Ionic coloring. In any case, the poem’s “realistic” treatment of Idomeneus’ speech makes the epigram a fitting complement to the immediately preceding epigram, in which Hecataeus is praised for producing a realistic sculpture of Philitas in which he mixed in nothing from the form of heroes (AB 63.4 ἀφ᾿ ἡρώων δ᾿ οὐδεν ἔμειξ᾿{ε} ἰδέης): read against that verse, the Idomeneus-statue epigram may be taken as an example of a treatment of “epic” subject matter in which the stylized language is replaced by a more realistic (if naturally still stylized) representation of Idomeneus’ native dialect.

The final Doric poem in the ἀνδριαντοποιικά (AB 68), on the colossal statue of Helios at Rhodes, also seems to use dialect as a marker of realistic speech, although in this case the speech is indirect and implicit rather than direct:

ἤθελον Ἠ̣έ̣λι̣ο̣ν̣ Ῥ̣ό̣διο̣ι̣ π̣[εριμάκε]α θ̣ε̣ῖν̣αι̣
     δὶϲ τόϲ̣ον, ἀ̣λλ̣ὰ Χάρηϲ Λί̣ν̣διο̣[ϲ] ὡ̣ρίϲ̣ατο
μ̣ηθέ̣να̣ τεχνίταν ἔ<τ>ι μείζ̣ο̣να̣ [τ]ο̣ῦ̣δ̣ε̣ κ̣[ο]λ̣οϲϲό̣ν
     θήϲειν̣· εἰ δὲ Μύ̣ρ̣ων εἰϲ τετρ̣ά̣π̣[ηχ]υ̣ν̣ ὅ̣[ρον
ϲεμ̣νὸϲ ἐ̣κεῖνοϲ̣ ἀ̣ν̣ῆ̣κ̣ε̣, Χάρηϲ π̣ρ̣ῶ̣[τοϲ μ]ε̣τ̣ὰ τέχνα[ϲ
     ζ̣ῶ̣<ι>ο̣ν ἐχ̣αλ̣χούργ̣ει γ̣ᾶϲ̣ μεγ̣[……].[..]ν̣

v. 1 π[εριμάκε]α edd. pr., sed π[εριμήκε]α supplere possis v. 4 θηϲεῖν ?

The Rhodians wanted to make the enormous (?) Sun
     Twice this size, but Chares of Lindus set it down that
No craftsman would make a statue even bigger than this one.
     If that venerable Myron reached a limit
Of four cubits, Chares was the first with his art
     To forge in bronze a figure … [the size?] of the earth …

In this regard, μηθένα in v. 3 is particularly interesting. The forms οὐθείς/μηθείς appear in Attic inscriptions as early as 378/7 BCE and are widespread in inscriptions and papyri throughout the Greek-speaking world by the end of the fourth century. [56] The form with a theta is thus not in itself unusual or necessarily marked, though it is unique in the papyrus, which elsewhere has οὐδείϲ (AB 62.6; AB 63.4; ambiguous at AB 77.4 οὐ[δ]έν). Heraclides of Miletus (fr. 25 Cohn ap. Eust. 452.20–1), however, reports that Doric speakers pronounced delta as theta and gives the examples of ἔθω for ἔδω, μασθόν for μαδόν, and ψύθος for ψεῦδος, and Archestratos of Gela (if the transmitted text is correct) seems to have used ἔθοντες (= ἔδοντες) to parody speakers of Sicilian Doric (fr. 60.11 Olson–Sens). [57] Moreover, the use of ζ to represent original δ (τόζ[᾿ = τόδε) in a sixth-century Rhodian inscription (IG XII 1.737; GDI 4140) suggests that in that local dialect inherited /d/ had come to be pronounced as a spirant. [58] All of this makes it possible, despite the widespread use of μηθείς and οὐθείς in the third century BCE, that the aspirated form of the adjective in its context serves, in conjunction with its referent τεχνίταν, as a marker of a stylized version of Rhodian Doric. [59] Our ignorance about the end of the first verse complicates the picture, but if the phrase μηθένα τεχνίταν is the first recognizably Doric language in the poem, the effect would be especially striking and pointed. If that was the case, the narrator, having begun in epic/Ionic, switched to Doric in order vividly to represent the actual words of the Rhodian sculptor. The influence of that “quotation” then continues throughout the remainder of the poem (τέχνα[ϲ]; γᾶϲ), as if the narrator’s description of Chares’ accomplishments were expressed by the artist himself.

Perhaps the most intriguing juxtaposition of Doric and epic-Ionic forms within a single poem in P.Mil.Vogl. VIII 309 occurs at AB 102, the first epigram in the section of the papyrus labeled τρόποι:

τί πρὸϲ ἔμ᾿ ὧδ᾿ ἔϲτητε; τί μ᾿ οὐκ ἠάϲατ᾿ ἰαύειν,
     εἰρόμενοι τίϲ ἐγὼ καὶ πόθεν ἢ ποδαπόϲ;
ϲτείχε<τέ> μου παρὰ ϲῆμα· Μενοίτιόϲ εἰμι Φιλάρχω
     Κρήϲ, ὀλιγορρήμων ὡϲ ἂν ἐπὶ ξενίηϲ.

Why did you stop near me like that? Why didn’t you let me sleep,
     asking who I am and whence and where born?
Go past my tomb. I am Menoetius, son of Philarchus,
     Cretan, a man of few words inasmuch as being in a foreign land.


The use to which dialect seems to be put in this poem—and elsewhere in the papyrus—provides a helpful backdrop for thinking about the juxtaposition of Doric and Ionic forms of the relative pronoun in the text of the poem with which this essay began, Posidippus AB 139 (8 GP = AP XII 131). On the one hand, the papyrus offers some justification for regularizing the forms in that epigram, since a comparison of the text of the Alexander-statue epigram contained in the single manuscript witness and that preserved on the papyrus suggests that some but not all of the original Doricisms were displaced in the course of transmission. Given the relatively scarcity of Doric forms in the poems of Posidippus that are preserved in the Anthology—and the predominance of Attic-Ionic in the Anthology in general—the Doricisms in the paradosis of AP XII 131 seem more likely to have been subject to alteration, and if one were to regularize, it would (pace Gow-Page) therefore make best sense to replace transmitted East Greek forms with Doricisms. On the other hand, the juxtaposition of Doric and Ionic forms of the relative pronouns in AP XII 131 is not inherently less likely than the use of markedly non-Doric forms like γραμμῆϲ or ξενίηϲ in close conjunction with Doric elements in individual poems of the new papyrus. Let us therefore briefly explore the consequences of assuming that Posidippus did in fact write ἅ three times in the first verse of AP XII 131 but Συρίης and ἥ elsewhere.

At first glance, therefore, the generic background of the poem’s opening might offer some justification for regularizing all of the Ionic forms to their Doric equivalents. A closer reading, however, suggests that the dialectal variation might itself be significant. Some of the wit of the epigram, indeed, depends on the disjunction between the elevated manner of the invocation of the goddess in the first couplet and the coarse content of the final description of the human Callistium. The speaker, whether the woman herself or someone else, uses “special” Doric forms, with their marked association to choral lyric, to refer to the goddess in the first line, but reverts to “ordinary” Ionic forms elsewhere. The effect is to create an opposition between the goddess, addressed at the opening of the epigram via Doric forms of the relative pronoun, and the sexually willing Callistium, who is described with the “unmarked” language of Ionic in the final relative clause, ἣ τὸν ἐραστὴν | οὐδέποτ᾿ οἰκείων ὦσεν ἀπὸ προθύρων.

Given our ignorance about the text, such a reading of the dialect forms in the epigram must be provisional, and the fact that the paradosis has Συρίης rather than Συρίας complicates the opposition that I have suggested. Taken cumulatively, however, the evidence offered by the new papyrus cautions against dismissing this and other passages in which the dialect seems to be inconsistent as merely the result of errors in transmission or as products of authorial carelessness. To the contrary, the new papyrus shows that Posidippus was interested in the nuances of dialect, which he uses as a powerful if often subtle tool not only for affiliating his compositions with the various literary traditions on which he draws, but also for creating other, more complex, forms of meaning. In this respect, as in many others, P.Mil.Vogl. VIII 309 offers unparalleled access into the practices of an important figure in the literary history of the third century BCE, and by implication into those of other learned Hellenistic epigrammatists as well.


[ back ] 1. I am deeply grateful to Marco Fantuzzi, Richard Hunter, David Lightfoot, Enrico Magnelli, Charles McNelis, Gregory Nagy, S. Douglas Olson, and Calvert Watkins for advice on drafts of this paper and for helpful discussion of the dialectal practices of Hellenistic poets generally. Although I cite poems by their enumeration in AB, I give the text of the editio princeps.

[ back ] 2. I use “Doric” and “West Greek” interchangeably. The retention of alpha for inherited /a:/ is a feature of Aeolic dialects as well, but as Redondo (forthcoming) has recently pointed out, Callimachus fr. 203.18 suggests that the basic distinction envisioned at least by that poet (and in great likelihood by his contemporaries) was between Ionic (in which he implicitly includes Attic) and Doric.

[ back ] 3. In verse 4 οὐδέποτ(ε) is of indeterminate dialectal coloring, since literary Doric allows ποτε (e.g. Pindar Pythian 4.4) as well as ποκα (cf. e.g. Theocritus 13.10 οὐδέποκ(α)). Cf. Molinos Tejada 1990:344–347. Despite Theocritus 15.126 (cf. Theocritus 1.1 GP, for which the Palatine ms. has Μίλατον) Μίλητον is the expected form; cf. Timotheus PMG 791 234 (Μίλητος δὲ πόλις νιν ἁ θρέψασ(α)).

[ back ] 4. For the development of a Doric koine by the end of the fourth century, cf. Buck 1955:176–178; Horrocks 1997:40–41.

[ back ] 5. Cf., e.g., Wilamowitz-Moellendorff 1886:25–28; Molinos Tejada 1990:38; Hunter 1996:31–45, esp. 36.

[ back ] 6. Cf. above note 2.

[ back ] 7. Cf. Molinos Tejada 1990 passim; Hunter 1996. For the problems raised by dialect in the medieval manuscript tradition of ancient authors, cf. Colvin 1999.

[ back ] 8. For a preliminary study of dialect, on the basis of the specimen poems published in Bastianini and Gallazzi 1993 and 1993a:34–39, cf. Palumba Stracca 1993–1994:405–412.

[ back ] 9. That the papyrus contains a number of itacizing errors (cf. BG:19–20) is particularly problematic, the distinction between η and ει in certain linguistic contexts has important dialectal implications.

[ back ] 10. Contrast epic/Ionic προχοῇσι at SH 700.2.

[ back ] 11. Cf. Sens 1997:88 on Theocritus 22.16.

[ back ] 12. The short initial syllable produced by quantitative metathesis in Attic (Ionic ἠοῖος, Doric ἀοῖος) is here metrically convenient.

[ back ] 13. On this epigram, cf. Sens 2002:249–262.

[ back ] 14. Cf. Buck 1955:40.

[ back ] 15. Cf. GP 2.636–637.

[ back ] 16. The dialect of μιαιφονίαν at the end of the poem is ambiguous. For φωνεῦντ᾿ in the fifth verse as an acceptable Doricism, and for the dialect coloring of proper names, see below.

[ back ] 17. Ahrens 1839–1843: II 153–72, 201–207, 403–422. Bartoněk 1972 recognizes a “Doris media” in which the compensatory lengthening of /e/ produces either η or ει.

[ back ] 18. I have elsewhere argued that the adjective, which is traditionally associated with fire, links Lysippus to his subject matter (cf. πῦρ … ὁρῇ and thus implies a more common sense “fierce” as well as “cunning.” See Sens in Gutzwiller 2004 (forthcoming).

[ back ] 19. Cf. Buck 1955:37.

[ back ] 20. Cf. Molinos Tejada 1990:88–96.

[ back ] 21. Cf. Buck 1955:164. In this regard, it is worth noting that although βωσί would be expected in some Doric areas (Buck 34), βουσί is the normal form in many West Greek dialects, including that spoken at Sicyon.

[ back ] 22. Cf. Reed 1997:35.

[ back ] 23. For hyperdoricisms in the bucolic corpus, cf. Molinos Tejada 1990:38–46; for Callimachus, cf. Cassio 1993:903–1010.

[ back ] 24. As BG note ad XII 8 (= AB 75.1), the scribe’s alteration of ειλομεϲ to ειλομεν is most easily understood as a banalization.

[ back ] 25. E.g., from contraction of ε + ε and ο + ε, cf. AB 75.1 εἵλομε<ϲ>; AB 87.4 ἀφειλόμεθα; AB 68.6 ἐχαλκούργει. With one exception (discussed below), the gen. sg is -ου; cf. AB 65.3 Ἀλεφά⌋νδρου; AB 75.2 ἁνιόχου, AB 75.4 Λακεδαιμονίου.

[ back ] 26. E.g. Aeschylus Eumenides 213; Euripides Iphigeneia at Aulis 326; Aristophanes Wasps 787, 1350; Birds 323; Women of the Thesmophoria 743; Assembly Women 134; Lysias VII 4; XIII 76; Plato Phaedrus 244b; Laws 885b; Septuagint Job XXIV 6, XXXIV 32.

[ back ] 27. The text of the first line appears to contain the itacising error ιδομενεια for Ἰδομεν<ῆ>α.

[ back ] 28. The editors’ Κρηϲίλ<α> is a natural and highly likely correction of κρηϲιλε in the second verse, though it is at least theoretically possible that Posidippus wrote Ionic Κρηϲίλεω or Κρηϲίλω, or even Attic -ου; cf. also πλαϲται (dative?) in the final verse.

[ back ] 29. The total number of possible examples of augmented indicatives of verbs beginning in epsilon is small. Of those expected to produce ει-, the papyrus has III 1 εἶχε (= AB 15.2) and XII 1 ἐφειλκύϲα[το (= AB 74.8) in Ionic contexts, XII 8 εἵλομε<ϲ> (= AB 75.1) and XIII 34 ἀφειλόμεθα (= AB 87.4) in Doric poems.

[ back ] 30. Cf. Buck 1955:28–29; Hopkinson 1984:45.

[ back ] 31. For Hellenistic poets’ sensitivity to local variations in “Doric,” cf. Theocritus 15.80–95, with Hunter 1996:120–123 and 1996a:152.

[ back ] 32. AB 99, a cure poem concerning a Cretan apparently named Asclas, shows no trace of Doric.

[ back ] 33. Cf. Buck 1955:101. ἐκεῖνος recurs beside Doric forms in other Hellenistic epigram at e.g. Theocritus 5.1 GP (= AP VI 336.1); Erycius 12.5 GP (= AP VII 230.5); cf. Theocritus 11.3 GP (= AP VII 663.3) ἀντὶ τήνων (ἀντεκείνων P).

[ back ] 34. Molinos Tejada 1990:259–260.

[ back ] 35. Cf. Buck 1955:176–178. Inscriptional evidence suggests that the Cyrenean dialect, which Ruijgh 1984:56–88 thought may have been a prominent feature of the linguistic landscape at Alexandria, contained a number of elements of the koine; cf. Dobias-Lalou 1987:29–50.

[ back ] 36. Indeed, features of the Doric koine and of Attic seem to have been widespread in certain parts of Crete (Buck 1955:171; Brixhe 1993:37–71) and the presence of strictly non-Doric forms in the Idomeneus-statue epigram and in the epitaph for Menoetius may thus not be wholly unrealistic.

[ back ] 37. Buck 1955:177.

[ back ] 38. Personal names, like place names, show a high degree of linguistic continuity even in “foreign” dialectal contexts; cf. Threatte 1980:136; Morpurgo Davies 2000:15–39.

[ back ] 39. Cf. Fantuzzi in Gutzwiller 2004 (forthcoming).

[ back ] 40. See above, n. 38.

[ back ] 41. The almost universal use of ἱερός rather than ἱαρός in choral lyric and Theocritus (e.g. Pindar Olympian 2.9 and often; Theocritus 1.69; cf. Molinos Tejada 1990:109–110) means that ἱερόν is not marked for dialect; for ἱερός as a feature of spoken Doric by the fourth century, cf. Buck 1955:177.

[ back ] 42. Thompson in Gutzwiller 2004 (forthcoming) rather identifies this Berenice with the Syrian queen, sister of Ptolemy III Euergetes.

[ back ] 43. Although the Macedonian elite adopted a form of the Attic koine in the fourth century (cf. Horrocks 1997:32–33; Brixhe1999:66–69), the alleged Argive origins of the Macedonian royal house and the connection between the Ptolemies and the Doric hero Heracles (cf. Theocritus 17.26–27 would have lent Doric a particular ideological importance for the Alexandrian court; cf. Hunter 2003 (forthcoming). Ruijgh 1984 argues that the Doric dialect of Cyrene was much spoken in Alexandria and influential on the poetry of Theocritus; for criticism, cf. Molinos Tejada 1990; Abbenes 1996:1–19. For evidence for “Macedonian” from a defixio found at Pella, cf. Dubois 1995:190–197; Voutiras 1998:20–34; Brixhe 1999:41–69.

[ back ] 44. Such a view is at any rate consistent with the tradition that Ptolemy I placed special emphasis on his Macedonian ethnicity; cf. Bearzot 1992:39–53.

[ back ] 45. Although the ἀνδριαντοποιικά may be read as a highly unified section (cf. Gutzwiller, this volume; Sens in Gutzwiller 2004 (forthcoming) a); the use of Doric in three poems means that the section cannot be taken to have a single consistent narrative voice.

[ back ] 46. Cf. Asclepiades 43 GP (Asclepiades or Archelaus APl [A] 120), where Doric forms are used both by the narrator and by the statue of Alexander.

[ back ] 47. For such dialect marking, cf. Asclepiades 26.4 GP (AP V 185.4), where the Doric form τέτορας occurs in the instructions given to a slave to buy specific provisions from a certain Amyntas, whose name suggests that he was of Macedonian origin (for Macedonian nomenclature, cf. Hatzopoulos 2000:99–117). I am grateful to M. Fantuzzi for calling my attention to the relevance of this passage.

[ back ] 48. Cf. A. fr. 78a.6–7; Erinna 3.3–4 GP (AP VI 352.3–4); Herodas IV 32–34 with Headlam ad 33.

[ back ] 49. For the technique, cf. Asclepiades GP 43.4 (AP l 120); Dioscorides GP 15.5-6 (AP VI 126.4–6); later, Agathias AP IX 619.4–5.

[ back ] 50. Note also the colloquial (and unepic) character of the address ὦ ᾿γαθέ at AB 64.3 (cf., e.g., Aristophanes Clouds 675, 726; Wasps 286, 920, 1145, 1149, 1152; Pherecrates fr. 43.3; Metagenes fr. 2.1; for ἀγαθέ as a term of address, cf. the passages assembled by Dickey 1996:277–278).

[ back ] 51. As the first editors note, Idomeneus’ shout in the second couplet finds an analogue at Il. XIII 477–86, where he calls on a number of his companions, including Meriones, to come to his aid (cf. 477–481 αὖε … Μηριόνην … ῾δεῦτε, φίλοι, καί μ᾿ οἴῳ ἀμύνετε).

[ back ] 52. ἁδύ also suggests that the dative Ὀλυμπίαι in the opening hexameter should be interpreted as a Doricism rather than an Atticism; that AB 73.3 should be supplemented ταχυ[τᾶτι rather than ταχυ[τῆτι seems likely.

[ back ] 53. Cf. Forsmann 1966:6–8.

[ back ] 54. θεῖναι is properly foreign to Doric, in which athematic infinitives terminate in -μεν rather than -ναι cf. Buck 1955:122; for the evidence for athematic infinitival endings in the bucolic corpus, cf. Molinos Tejada 1990:317–319.

[ back ] 55. BG:195.

[ back ] 56. Mayser 1906 (i.1):180–182; Threatte 1980 (i):472–476.

[ back ] 57. Cf. Olson and Sens 2000:232.

[ back ] 58. Cf. Buck 1955:58–59.

[ back ] 59. Given the Doric character of the indirect discourse, one could conceivably write the contracted Doric future infinitive θησεῖν rather than θήσειν at the head of the second pentameter.

[ back ] 60. BG:229.

[ back ] 61. Palumbo Stracca 1993:408.

[ back ] 62. Gronewald 1993:28–29; Voutiras 1994:27–31; Dickie 1995:5–12; Celentano 1995:67–79; Cairns 1996:77–88.

[ back ] 63. Pace D’Alessio 1996:227n22, who claims that the final phrase means “as one would be in a foreign land” rather than “inasmuch as being in a foreign land” (cf. Gronewald 1993:28–29); cf. AB 94.3 and Asclepiades 28 GP (AP VII 11), where the small quantity of Erinna’s work is explained by the clause ὡς ἂν παρθενικᾶς ἐννεακαιδεκέτευς, “as (is natural given that) she was a nineteen-year-old maiden.” On the Asclepiadean poem, see Sens 2003 (forthcoming).

[ back ] 64. Thus Gronewald 1993:28-29, adducing an Athenian proverb about the restricted parrhesia of metics. That the speaker is also ἐπὶ ξενίης in the sense that he has come to reside in the place of the dead may also contribute to the point.

[ back ] 65. It is tempting to suggest that the other word of markedly non-Doric coloring, σῆμα, is equally significant: taken together, σῆμα and ξενίης serve precisely as the σήματα of the speaker’s foreign status.

[ back ] 66. For the relative clause as a typical hymnic feature, cf. Janko 1981:9–10; Norden 1913:168–172. For the invocation of the goddess by reference to her habitual haunts, cf. Sappho frr. 1.7; 127; Alcaeus fr. 34.1; Aristophanes Lysistrata 1296; Theocritus 1.125. For ἔλθοις ἵλαος, cf. Pindar Pythian 12.4; Aeschylus Eumenides 1040; Aristophanes Women of the Thesmophoria 1148; anonymous PMG 934.19; Herodas IV 11; Furley and Bremer 2001: I 54–55.

[ back ] 67. Maehler 1982:180–181.

[ back ] 68. Elsewhere, cf. Hesychius ε 5483 ἐποιχνεῖ· ἐπιφοιτᾷ.

[ back ] 69. For the Hellenistic association of Doric and lyric, cf. Fantuzzi 1993:932; Hunter 1996:31.5.