Aulus Gellius, Attic Nights 15.20 = T 2 Kannicht

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

1 Euripidi poetae matrem Theopompus FGrHist 115 F 397 agrestia olera uendentem uictum quaesisse dicit.

1 Theopompus says that the mother of the poet Euripides earned her living selling wild vegetables.

2 patri autem eius nato illo responsum est a Chaldaeis eum puerum, cum adoleuisset, uictorem in certaminibus fore: id ei puero fatum esse.

2 When he was born, his father received an oracle from the Chaldaeans that the boy, when he grew up, would be victorious in contests: that was the boy’s fate, they said.

3 pater interpretatus athletam debere esse roborato exercitatoque filii sui corpore Olympiam certaturum eum inter athletas pueros deduxit. ac primo quidem in certamen per ambiguam aetatem receptus non est, post Eleusino et Theseo certamine pugnauit et coronatus est.

3 The father, having interpreted the oracle as meaning that his son ought to be an athlete, strengthened and trained his son’s body, and took him to Olympia to compete among other boy athletes. At first, he was not admitted to the contest because he was not of age, but afterwards he boxed in the Eleusinian and Thesean contests and was crowned with victory garlands.

4 mox a corporis cura ad excolendi animi studium transgressus auditor fuit physici Anaxagorae et Prodici rhetoris, in morali autem philosophia Socratis. tragoediam scribere natus annos duodeuiginti adortus est.

4 Soon, having changed from care of the body to eagerness for developing his mind, he became a pupil of the natural philosopher Anaxagoras and the orator Prodicus, and also of Socrates in moral philosophy. He began to write tragedy when he was eighteen years old.

5 Philochorus FGrHist 328 F 219 refert in insula Salamine speluncam esse taetram et horridam, quam nos uidimus, in qua Euripides tragoedias scriptitarit.

5 Philochorus says that on the island of Salamis there is a foul and grim cave, which I have seen, in which Euripides used to write his tragedies.

6 mulieres fere omnes in maiorem modum exosus fuisse dicitur, siue quod natura abhorruit a mulierum coetu siue quod duas simul uxores habuerat, cum id decreto ab Atheniesibus facto ius esset, quarum matrimonii pertaedabat.

6 He is said to have hated the great majority of women, whether because his nature shrank from intercourse with them or because he had had two wives simultaneously, when that was legally permissible following a decree by the Athenians, and he was exceedingly fed up with being married to them.

7 eius odii in mulieres Aristophanes quoque meminit ἐν ταῖς προτέραις Θεσμοφοριαζούσαις in his uersibus Ar. Thesm. 453-6:

νῦν οὖν ἁπάσαισιν παραῖνω καὶ λέγω,
τοῦτον κολάσαι τὸν ἄνδρα πολλῶν οὕνεκα·
ἄγρια γὰρ ἡμᾶς ἡμᾶς Aristophanes : ΤΙΝΑΣ M, ὦ γυναῖκες, δρᾶι κακά
ἅτ’ ἐν ἀγρίοισι ἀγρίοισι Ar. : ΑΓΡΙΟΙΣ m : ΑΤΡΙΟΙΣ m : ΑΓΙΟΙΣ m τοῖς λαχάνοις αὐτὸς τραφείς.

7 Aristophanes also mentions his misogyny in the first Thesmophoriazusae, in the following verses:

So now I exhort you ladies and I tell you to punish this man for many reasons. For he abuses us wildly, ladies, because he himself was reared among wild vegetables.

8 Alexander autem Aetolus Fr. 7 Magnelli hos de Euripide versus composuit:

ὁ δ’ Ἀναξαγόρου †τρόφιμος ἀρχαίου ἀρχαίου M : χαίου Valckenauerστρυφνὸς στρυφνὸς Genos III.1 : ΣΤΡΕΙΦΝΟΣ M μὲν ἔμοιγε προσειπεῖν
καὶ μισόγελως καὶ τωθάζειν οὐδὲ παρ’ οἶνον μεμαθηκώς,
ἀλλ’ ὅτι γράψαι, τοῦτ’ ἂν μέλιτος καὶ Σειρήνων ἐτετεύχει.

8 Alexander the Aetolian has composed the following verses about Euripides:

The pupil of †ancient† Anaxagoras seems to me sour to talk to and a laughter-hater who has not even learned to make jokes over a glass of wine, but what he writes, this could have been fashioned from a bee or the Sirens.

9 is, cum in Macedonia apud Archelaum regem esset utereturque eo rex familiariter, rediens nocte ab eius cena canibus a quodam aemulo inmissis dilaceratus est, et ex his uulneribus mors secuta est.

9 This man, when he was in Macedonia at the court of king Archelaus and the king was on intimate terms with him, whilst returning by night from dining with him, was mauled by dogs, who were set on him by some rival, and from these wounds death followed.

10 sepulchrum autem eius et memoriam Macedones eo dignati sunt honore, ut in gloriae quoque loco praedicarent: οὔποτε σὸν μνῆμα, Εὐρίπιδες, ὄλοιτό που, quod egregius poeta morte obita sepultus in eorum terra foret. quamobrem cum legati ad eos ab Atheniensibus missi petissent, ut ossa Athenas in terram illius patriam permitterent transferri, maximo consensu Macedones in ea re deneganda perstiterunt.

10 The Macedonians glorified his tomb and memorial with such honour that in the manner of a boast they also predicted: ‘Your memorial, Euripides, will never die,’ because the excellent poet, when death had overcome him, had been buried in their land. For which reason, when the ambassadors sent to them from the Athenians had requested that they allow his bones to be transferred to Athens, to his fatherland, by a unanimous decision the Macedonians insisted on rejecting the request.

Relevant guides Euripides