Athenaeus, Sophists at Dinner 13.592a

How to quote this translation

M = reading of the whole MS tradition
m = reading of part of the MS tradition
P = reading on a papyrus

Σοφοκλῆς δ’ ὁ τραγωιδιοποιὸς ἤδη γέρων ὢν ἠράσθη Θεωρίδος τῆς ἑταίρας. ἱκετεύων οὖν τὴν Ἀφροδίτην φησίν·

κλῦθί κλῦθί Schweighaeuser, cf. Vit. Hom.: κλύε M μευ εὐχομένου, Kουρότροφε, δὸς δὲ γυναῖκα
τήνδε νέων μὲν ἀναίνεσθαι φιλότητα καὶ εὐνήν,
ἣ δ’ ἐπιτερπέσθω πολιοκροτάφοισι γέρουσιν,
ὧν ἰσχὺς μὲν ἀπήμβλυνται, θυμὸς θυμὸς Schweighaeuser, coll. Vit. Hom.: θεῖος M δὲ μενοινᾶι.”

ταῦτα μέν ἐστιν ἐκ τῶν εἰς Ὅμηρον ἀναφερομένων. τῆς δὲ Θεωρίδος μνημονεύει λέγων ἔν τινι στασίμωι στασίμωι Casaubon: στασίμως M οὕτως·

φίλη γὰρ ἡ Θεωρίς. F 765 Radt

ἐπὶ δὲ δυσμαῖς ὢν τοῦ βίου, ὥς φησιν Ἡγήσανδρος FHG 4.418, fr. 27, Ἀρχίππην ἠγάπησεν τὴν ἑταίραν, καὶ τοῦ βίου κληρονόμον κατέλιπεν. ὅτι δὲ γηραίωι ὄντι τῶι Σοφοκλεῖ συνῆν ἡ Ἀρχίππη, ὁ πρότερος αὐτῆς ἐραστὴς Σμικρίνης ἐρωτώμενος ὑπό τινος τί πράττει Ἀρχίππη, χαριέντως ἔφη· “ὥσπερ αἱ γλαῦκες ἐπὶ τάφωι τάφωι Meineke: τάφων m: τάφον m κάθηται.”

Sophocles the tragedian, when he was already an old man, conceived a passion for the courtesan Theoris. So supplicating Aphrodite, he said:

‘Hear me when I pray, nurturer of youths, and grant that this woman reject the love and beds of young men, but let her delight in old men whose temples are hoary, whose strength is blunted, but whose desire is keen.’

These verses are ascribed to Homer. But he mentions Theoris when he says in one of the choral passages:

For Theoris was dear.

When he was in the twilight of his life, as Hegesander says, he fell in love with Archippe the courtesan, and made her the inheritor of his property. And because Archippe was sleeping with Sophocles who was an old man, her former lover, Smikrines, when someone asked what Archippe was doing, said playfully: ‘she’s sitting, like owls, on a tomb.’

Relevant guides Sophocles