Dio Chrysostom, Orations 33.11-12

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

(11) καὶ μὴν ὅσωι τὸ λοιδορεῖν καὶ τὴν ἀβελτερίαν τὴν ἑκάστου καὶ τὴν πονηρίαν φανερὰν ποιεῖν κρεῖττόν ἐστι τοῦ χαρίζεσθαι διὰ τῶν λόγων καὶ τοῖς ἐγκωμίοις θρύπτειν τοὺς ἀκούοντας, οὐχ ἥκιστα ἐκεῖθεν εἴσεσθε. δύο γὰρ ποιητῶν γεγονότων ἐξ ἅπαντος τοῦ αἰῶνος, οἷς οὐδένα τῶν ἄλλων ξυμβάλλειν ἄξιον, Ὁμήρου τε καὶ Ἀρχιλόχου, τούτων Ὅμηρος μὲν σχεδὸν πάντα ἐνεκωμίασε, καὶ θηρία καὶ φυτὰ καὶ ὕδωρ καὶ γῆν καὶ ὅπλα καὶ ἵππους, καὶ οὐδὲν ἔσθ᾽ ὅτου μνησθεὶς χωρὶς ἐπαίνου τε καὶ τιμῆς, ὡς ἂν εἴποι τις, παρῆλθεν. ἕνα ἕνα m: ἓν m: ὃν Reiske γοῦν μόνον ἐξ ἁπάντων ἐβλασφήμησε Θερσίτην, καὶ τοῦτον λιγὺν εἶναί φησιν ἀγορητήν. (12) Ἀρχίλοχος δὲ ἐπὶ τὴν ἐναντίαν ἧκε, τὸ ψέγειν, ὁρῶν οἶμαι τούτου μᾶλλον δεομένους δεομένους m: δεομένου m τοὺς ἀνθρώπους, καὶ πρῶτον αὑτὸν ψέγει ψέγει m: ψέγειν m . τοιγαροῦν μόνος καὶ μετὰ τὴν τελευτὴν καὶ πρὶν ἢ γενέσθαι τῆς μεγίστης ἔτυχε μαρτυρίας παρὰ τοῦ δαιμονίου. τὸν μέν γε ἀποκτείναντα αὐτὸν ὁ Ἀπόλλων ἐξελαύνων ἐκ τοῦ νεὼ Μουσῶν αὐτὸν ἀνεῖπε θεράποντα ἀνηιρηκέναι. καὶ τὸ δεύτερον, ὡς ἀπελογεῖτο ἐν πολέμωι λέγων ἀποκτεῖναι, πάλιν Μουσῶν θεράποντα ἔφη τὸν Ἀρχίλοχον.

(11) And indeed how much better it is to slander and make the stupidity and the baseness of each person visible than to pander to the audience with words and pamper them with praise, you will see best from this. Two of the poets of any period with whom no one else has been able to compare are Homer and Archilochus. Homer, on the one hand, praised nearly everything: the beasts, the plants, the water, the earth, the arms of war, horses – there is nothing he comes to mention, you might say, without praise and honour. The only one of all he does speak ill of is Thersites, and Homer still calls him ‘a clear orator’. (12) Archilochus comes to the opposite extreme, mockery, since he saw, I think, people are more in need of this, and he first mocked himself. For in fact he alone obtained the greatest proof of divine favour both after his death and before he was born. Apollo drove the man who killed him out of the temple, and proclaimed that he had slayed the attendant of the Muses. And later, when the man defended himself by saying he had killed [him] in war, Apollo declared again that Archilochus was the attendant of the Muses.

Relevant guides Archilochus