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Chapter 4. The Authority of the King
κρηῆναι δὲ καὶ ἄλλῳ, ὅτ’ ἄν τινα θυμὸς ἀνώγηι
εἰπεῖν εἰς αγαθόν.
This is a speech by Nestor addressed to Agamemnon with the purpose of urging him not to disregard the opinions expressed to him. Responsible for numerous men by virtue of his royal authority, he ought to listen to the wise counsels that can be given to him. “You more than others it behooves to speak and listen and at need act according to the opinion of another when his heart has impelled him to speak for the good of all.” This translation is in need of some revision. We must first elucidate the construction krēē̂nai dè kaì állōi. It is to be explained by the ellipsis of the direct object, which is épos and is to be understood from the preceding line: “pronounce and listen to the word (épos)” and from eipeîn in the following line. The construction is therefore to be understood as follows: krēē̂nai (épos) állōi and so is exactly symmetrical with krē̂non kaì emoì épos (Od. 20, 115). We may thus translate “You more than anyone should speak, lend your ears to, and ratify (krēē̂nai) the word of another if his spirit prompts him to speak to good purpose.”