Pseudo-Herodotus, Life of Homer

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

ἩΡΟΔΟΤΟΥ ΠΕΡΙ ὉΜΗΡΟΥ ΓΕΝΕΣΙΟΣ ΚΑΙ ἩΛΙΚΙΗΣ ΚΑΙ ΒΙΟΥ

1 Ἡρόδοτος Ἁλικαρνασσεὺς περὶ Ὁμήρου γενέσιος καὶ ἡλικίης καὶ βιοτῆς τάδε ἱστόρηκε, ζητήσας ἐπεξελθεῖν ἐς τὸ ἀτρεκέστατον. ἐπεὶ γὰρ Κύμη ἡ πάλαι Αἰολιῶτις ἐκτίζετο, συνῆλθον ἐν αὐτῆι αὐτῆι m: ταυτῶι m παντοδαπὰ ἔθνεα Ἑλληνικά, καὶ δὴ καὶ ἐκ Μαγνησίης ἄλλοι τέ τινες καὶ Μελάνωπος ὁ Ἰθαγένεος τοῦ Κρήθωνος, οὐ πολύφορτος ἀλλὰ βραχέα τοῦ βίου ἔχων. οὗτος δὲ ὁ Μελάνωπος ἔγημεν ἐν τῆι Κύμηι τὴν θυγατέρα Ὀμύρητος, καὶ αὐτῶι γίνεται ἐκ κοίτης θῆλυ τέκνον, ὧι ὄνομα τίθεται Κρηθηΐδα. καὶ αὐτὸς μὲν ὁ Μελάνωπος καὶ ἡ γυνὴ αὐτοῦ ἐτελεύτησαν τὸν βίον· τὴν δὲ θυγατέρα ἐπιτρέπει ἀνδρὶ ὧι ἐχρῆτο μάλιστα, Κλεάνακτι τῶι Ἀργείωι.

2 χρόνου δὲ προϊόντος συνέβη τὴν παῖδα μιγεῖσαν ἀνδρὶ λαθραίως ἐν γαστρὶ σχεῖν. τὰ μὲν οὖν πρῶτα ἐλάνθανεν· ἐπεὶ δὲ ἤισθετο ὁ Κλεάναξ, ἤχθετο τῆι συμφορῆι, καὶ καλεσάμενος τὴν Κρηθηΐδα χωρὶς πάντων ἐν αἰτίηι μεγάληι εἶχεν, ἐπιλεγόμενος τὴν αἰσχύνην τὴν πρὸς τοὺς πολιήτας. προβουλεύεται οὖν περὶ αὐτῆς τάδε· ἔτυχον οἱ Κυμαῖοι κτίζοντες τότε τοῦ Ἑρμείου κόλπου τὸν μυχόν· κτιζομένοισι δὲ τὴν πόλιν Σμύρναν ἔθετο τὸ ὄνομα Θησεύς, μνημεῖον ἐθέλων καταστῆσαι τῆς ἑωυτοῦ γυναικὸς ἐπώνυμον· ἦν γὰρ αὐτῆι τοὔνομα Σμύρνα. ὁ δὲ Θησεὺς ἦν τῶν τὴν Κύμην κτισάντων ἐν τοῖς πρώτοις Θεσσαλῶν, ἀπὸ Εὐμήλου τοῦ Ἀδμήτου, κάρτα εὖ ἔχων τοῦ βίου. ἐνταῦθα ὑπεκτίθεται ὁ Κλεάναξ τὴν Κρηθηΐδα πρὸς Ἰσμηνίην Βοιώτιον, τῶν ἀποίκων λελογχότα, ὃς ἐτύγχανεν αὐτῶι ἐὼν ἑταῖρος τὰ μάλιστα.


3 χρόνου δὲ προϊόντος, ἐξελθοῦσα ἡ Κρηθηῒς μετ’ ἄλλων γυναικῶν πρὸς ἑορτήν τινα ἐπὶ τὸν ποταμὸν τὸν καλούμενον Μέλητα, ἤδη ἐπίτοκος οὖσα, τίκτει τὸν Ὅμηρον, οὐ τυφλὸν ἀλλὰ δεδορκότα· καὶ τίθεται ὄνομα τῶι παιδίωι Μελησιγένεα, ἀπὸ τοῦ ποταμοῦ τὴν ἐπωνυμίαν λαβοῦσα. τέως μὲν οὖν ἡ Κρηθηῒς ἦν παρὰ τῶι Ἰσμηνίηι· προϊόντος δὲ τοῦ χρόνου ἐξῆλθε, καὶ ἀπὸ ἐργασίης χειρῶν ὡρμημένη ἔτρεφε τὸ παιδίον καὶ ἑωυτήν, ἄλλοτε παρ’ ἄλλων ἔργα λαμβάνουσα· καὶ ἐπαίδευε ἐπαίδευε m: ἐπαίδευσε m τὸν παῖδα ἀφ’ ὧν ἠδύνατο.


4 ἦν δέ τις ἐν Σμύρνηι τοῦτον τὸν χρόνον Φήμιος τοὔνομα, παῖδας γράμματα καὶ τὴν ἄλλην μουσικὴν διδάσκων πᾶσαν. οὗτος μισθοῦται τὴν Κρηθηΐδα, ὢν μονότροπος, ἐριουργῆσαι αὐτῶι εἴριά τινα ἃ παρὰ τῶν παίδων ἐς μισθὸν ἐλάμβανεν. ἣ δὲ παρ’ αὐτῶι εἰργάζετο, πολλῶι κοσμίωι καὶ σωφροσύνηι πολλῆι χρωμένη, καὶ τῶι Φημίωι κάρτα ἠρέσκετο. τέλος δὲ προσηνέγκατο αὐτῆι λόγους πείθων ἑωυτῶι συνοικεῖν, ἄλλά τε πολλὰ λέγων οἷς μιν ὤιετο προσάξεσθαι, καὶ ἔτι περὶ τοῦ παιδός, υἱὸν ποιούμενος, καὶ ὅτι τραφεὶς καὶ παιδευθεὶς ὑπ’ αὐτοῦ ἄξιος λόγου ἔσται· ἑώρα γὰρ τὸν παῖδα ὄντα συνετὸν καὶ κάρτα εὐφυέα· ἔστ’ ἀνέπεισεν αὐτὴν ποιεῖν ταῦτα.


5 ὁ παῖς δὲ ἦν τε φύσιν ἔχων ἀγαθήν, ἐπιμελίης τε καὶ παιδεύσιος προσγενομένης αὐτίκα πολλὸν τῶν πάντων ὑπερεῖχε. χρόνου δὲ ἐπιγενομένου ἀνδρούμενος οὐδὲν τοῦ Φημίου ὑποδεέστερος ἦν ἐν τῆι διδασκαλίαι οὐδὲν τοῦ Φημίου ὑποδεέστερος ἦν ἐν τῆι διδασκαλίαι m: οὐδὲν τοῦ Φημίου ἐν τῆι διδασκαλίαι ὑποδεέστερος ἦν m. καὶ οὕτως ὁ μὲν Φήμιος ἐτελεύτησε τὸν βίον, καταλιπὼν πάντα τῶι παιδί, οὐ πολλῶι δὲ ὕστερον καὶ ἡ Κρηθηῒς ἐτελεύτησεν· ὁ δὲ Μελησιγένης ἐπὶ τῆι διδασκαλίαι καθειστήκει. καθ’ ἑωυτὸν δὲ γενόμενος μᾶλλον ὑπὸ τῶν ἀνθρώπων ἑωρᾶτο, καὶ αὐτοῦ θωυμασταὶ καθειστήκεισαν οἵ τε ἐγχώριοι καὶ τῶν ξένων οἱ ἐσαπικνεόμενοι. ἐμπόριον γὰρ ἦν ἡ Σμύρνα, καὶ σῖτος ἐξήγετο πολὺς αὐτόθεν, ἐκ τῆς ἐπικειμένης χώρας δαψιλέως κάρτα ἐσαγόμενος ἐς αὐτήν. οἱ οὖν ξένοι, ὁκότε παύσοιντο τῶν ἔργων, ἀπεσχόλαζον παρὰ τῶι Μελησιγένει ἐγκαθίζοντες.

6 ἦν δὲ ἐν αὐτοῖς τότε καὶ Μέντης ναύκληρος ἀπὸ τῶν περὶ Λευκάδα τόπων, καταπεπλευκὼς ἐπὶ σῖτον ἔχων ναῦν, πεπαιδευμένος τε ἀνὴρ ὡς ἐν ἐκείνωι τῶι χρόνωι καὶ πολυΐστωρ· ὅς μιν ἔπεισε τὸν Μελησιγένη μεθ’ ἑωυτοῦ πλεῖν καταλύσαντα τὴν διδασκαλίαν, μισθόν τε λαμβάνοντα καὶ τὰ δέοντα πάντα, καὶ ὅτι τὸ χώρας καὶ πόλιας θεήσασθαι ἄξιον εἴη αὐτῶι ἕως νέος ἐστί. καί μιν οἴομαι μάλιστα τούτοισι προαχθῆναι προαχθῆναι m: προσαχθῆναι m· ἴσως γὰρ καὶ τῆι ποιήσει ἤδη τότε ἐπενόει ἐπιθήσεσθαι. καταλύσας δὲ τὴν διδασκαλίαν ἐναυτίλλετο μετὰ τοῦ Μέντεω. καὶ ὅπου ἑκάστοτε ἀφίκοιτο, πάντα τὰ ἐπιχώρια διεωρᾶτο, καὶ ἱστορέων ἐπυνθάνετο· εἰκὸς δέ μιν ἦν καὶ μνημόσυνα πάντων γράφεσθαι.

7 ἀνακομιζόμενοι δὲ ἐκ Τυρσηνίης καὶ τῆς Ἰβηρίης ἀπικνέονται ἐς Ἰθάκην. καὶ τῶι Μελησιγένει συνέβη νοσήσαντι τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς κάρτα δεινῶς ἔχειν, καὶ αὐτὸν θεραπείης εἵνεκα πλεῖν μέλλων ἐς τὴν Λευκάδα, καταλιπεῖν ὁ Μέντης παρὰ ἀνδρὶ φίλωι ἑωυτοῦ ἐς τὰ μάλιστα, Μέντορι τῶι Ἀλκίμου Ἰθακησίωι, πολλὰ δεηθεὶς ἐπιμελίην ἔχειν· ἐπαναπλώσας δὲ ἀναλήψεσθαι αὐτόν. ὁ δὲ Μέντωρ ἐνοσήλευεν αὐτὸν ἐκτενέως· καὶ γὰρ τοῦ βίου ἀρκεόντως εἶχε, καὶ ἤκουεν εὖ ἐς δικαιοσύνην τε καὶ φιλοξενίην μακρῶι μάλιστα τῶν ἐν Ἰθάκηι ἀνδρῶν. ἐνταῦθα συνέβη τῶι Μελησιγένει τὰ τὰ: om. m περὶ Ὀδυσσέως ἐξιστορῆσαι καὶ πυθέσθαι. οἱ μὲν δὴ Ἰθακήσιοι λέγουσι τότε μιν παρ’ ἑωυτοῖς τυφλωθῆναι· ὡς δὲ ἐγώ φημι, τότε μὲν ὑγιῆ γενέσθαι, ὕστερον δὲ ἐν Κολοφῶνι τυφλωθῆναι· συνομολογοῦσι δέ μοι καὶ Κολοφώνιοι τούτοις.

8 ὁ δὲ Μέντης ἀναπλέων ἐκ τῆς Λευκάδος προσέσχεν ἐς τὴν Ἰθάκην καὶ ἀνέλαβε τὸν Μελησιγένεα· χρόνον τε ἐπὶ συχνὸν συμπεριέπλει αὐτῶι. ἀπικομένωι δὲ ἐς Κολοφῶνα συνέβη πάλιν νοσήσαντα τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς μὴ δύνασθαι διαφυγεῖν τὴν νόσον, ἀλλὰ τυφλωθῆναι ἐνταῦθα. ἐκ δὲ τῆς Κολοφῶνος τυφλὸς ἐὼν ἀπικνέεται ἐς τὴν Σμύρναν, καὶ οὕτως ἐπεχείρει τῆι ποιήσει.


9 χρόνου δὲ προϊόντος, ἐν τῆι Σμύρνηι ἄπορος ἐὼν τοῦ βίου, διενοήθη ἀπικέσθαι ἐς Κύμην. πορευόμενος δὲ διὰ τοῦ Ἕρμου πεδίου ἀπικνέεται ἐς Νέον τεῖχος, ἀποικίην Κυμαίων· ὠικίσθη δὲ τοῦτο τὸ χωρίον ὕστερον Κύμης ἔτεσιν ὀκτώ. ἐνταῦθα λέγεται αὐτὸν ἐπιστάντα ἐπὶ σκυτεῖόν τι εἰπεῖν πρῶτα τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 1·

αἰδεῖσθε ξενίων κεχρημένον ἠδὲ δόμοιο,
οἳ πόλιν αἰπεινὴν Κύμην ἐριώπιδα κούρην
ναίετε, Σαρδήνης πόδα νείατον ὑψικόμοιο,
ἀμβρόσιον πίνοντες ὕδωρ θείου ποταμοῖο
Ἕρμου δινήεντος, ὃν ἀθάνατος τέκετο Ζεύς.

ἡ δὲ Σαρδήνη ὄρος ἐστὶν ὑπερκείμενον τοῦ τε Ἕρμου ποταμοῦ καὶ τοῦ Νέου τείχους. τῶι δὲ σκυτεῖ ὄνομα ἦν Τυχίος· ἀκούσαντι δὲ τῶν ἐπέων ἔδοξεν αὐτῶι δέξασθαι τὸν ἄνθρωπον. ἠλέησε γὰρ αἰτέοντα τυφλόν, καὶ ἐκέλευσεν εἰσιέναι τε αὐτὸν ἐς τὸ ἐργαστήριον καὶ μετέξειν ἔφη τῶν παρεόντων· ὃ δὲ ἐσῆλθε. κατήμενος δὲ ἐν τῶι σκυτείωι, παρεόντων καὶ ἄλλων, τήν τε ποίησιν αὐτοῖς ἐπεδείκνυτο, Ἀμφιάρεώ τε τὴν ἐξελασίαν τὴν ἐς Θήβας, καὶ τοὺς ὕμνους τοὺς ἐς θεοὺς πεποιημένους αὐτῶι, καὶ περὶ τῶν λεγομένων ὑπὸ τῶν παρεόντων ἐς τὸ μέσον γνώμας ἀποφαινόμενος θωύματος ἄξιος ἐφαίνετο εἶναι τοῖς ἀκούουσι.

10 τέως μὲν οὖν κατεῖχεν ὁ Μελησιγένης περὶ τὸ Νέον τεῖχος, ἀπὸ τῆς ποιήσιός γε τοῦ βίου τὴν μηχανὴν ἔχων. ἐδείκνυον δὲ οἱ Νεοτειχεῖς μέχρις ἐπ’ ἐμοῦ τὸν χῶρον ἐν ὧι κατίζων τῶν ἐπέων τὴν ἐπίδειξιν ἐποιέετο, καὶ κάρτα ἐσέβοντο τὸν τόπον· ἐν ὧι καὶ αἴγειρος ἐπεφύκει, ἣν ἐκεῖνοι ἔφασαν ἀφ’ οὗ ὁ Μελησιγένης ἦλθεν αὐτοῖς πεφυκέναι.

11 χρόνου δὲ προϊόντος, ἀπόρως κείμενος καὶ μόλις τὴν τροφὴν ἔχων, ἐπενοήθη ἐς τὴν Κύμην ἀπικέσθαι, εἴ τι βέλτιον πρήξει. μέλλων δὲ πορεύεσθαι τάδε τὰ ἔπεα λέγει Epigrammata 2·

αἶψα πόδες με φέροιεν ἐς αἰδοίων πόλιν ἀνδρῶν·
τῶν γὰρ καὶ θυμὸς πρόφρων καὶ μῆτις ἀρίστη.

ἀπὸ δὲ τοῦ Νέου τείχεος πορευόμενος ἀπίκετο ἐς τὴν Κύμην διὰ Λαρίσσης τὴν πορείαν ποιησάμενος· ἦν γὰρ οὕτως αὐτῶι εὐπορώτατον· καί, ὡς Κυμαῖοι λέγουσι, τῶι Φρυγίης βασιλῆϊ Μίδηι τῶι Γορδίεω, δεηθέντων πενθερῶν αὐτοῦ, ποιεῖ τὸ ἐπίγραμμα τόδε, τὸ ἔτι καὶ νῦν ἐπὶ τῆς στήλης τοῦ μνήματος [τοῦ Γορδίεω] [τοῦ Γορδίεω] Wilamowitz ἐπιγέγραπται Epigrammata 3. Cf. Cert. 15, Pl. Phdr. 264d, Favorin. Or. Cor. 38, D. Chr. 37.38, D. L. 1.89, Phlp. in Apo. 156, Anth. Pal 7.153. ἠέλιός … καὶ ποταμοί: om. Pl. D. Chr., Anth. Pal.; καὶ ποταμοί … ἠέλιός Cert.·

χαλκῆ παρθένος εἰμί, Μίδεω δ’ἐπὶ σήματι κεῖμαι om. m.; σήματι κεῖμαι M: σήματος ἧμαι Cert.·
ἔστ’ ἂν ὕδωρ τε ῥέηι καὶ δένδρεα μακρὰ τεθήληι,
ἠέλιός τ’ἀνιὼν λάμπηι λαμπρά λαμπρὰ m: μακρὰ m τε σελήνη,
καὶ ποταμοί γε ῥέωσιν γε ῥέωσιν M: πλήθωσιν Cert. ἀνακλύζηι ἀνακλύζηι M: περικλύζηι Cert. δὲ θάλασσα,
αὐτοῦ τῆιδε μένουσα πολυκλαύτου ἐπὶ τύμβου πολυκλαύτου ἐπὶ τύμβου M: πολυκλαύτωι ἐπὶ τύμβωι Cert.
ἀγγελέω ἀγγελέω M: σημανέω Cert. παριοῦσι, Μίδης ὅτι τῆιδε τέθαπται.

12 κατίζων δὲ ἐν ταῖς λέσχαις τῶν γερόντων ἐν τῆι Κύμηι ὁ Μελησιγένης τὰ ἔπεα τὰ πεποιημένα αὐτῶι ἐπεδείκνυτο, καὶ ἐν τοῖς λόγοις ἔτερπε τοὺς ἀκούοντας· καὶ αὐτοῦ θωυμασταὶ καθειστήκεσαν. γνοὺς δὲ ὅτι ἀποδέκονται αὐτοῦ τὴν ποίησιν οἱ Κυμαῖοι, καὶ ἐς συνήθειαν ἕλκων τοὺς ἀκούοντας, λόγους πρὸς αὐτοὺς τοιούσδε προσήνεγκε, λέγων ὡς εἰ θέλοιεν αὐτὸν δημοσίηι τρέφειν, ἐπικλεεστάτην αὐτῶν τὴν πόλιν ποιήσει. τοῖς δὲ ἀκούουσι βουλομένοις τε ἦν ταῦτα, καὶ αὐτοὶ παρήινεον ἐλθόντα ἐπὶ τὴν βουλὴν δεηθῆναι τῶν βουλευτέων· καὶ αὐτοὶ ἔφασαν συμπρήξειν. ὃ δὲ ἐπείθετο αὐτοῖς, καὶ βουλῆς συλλεγομένης ἐλθὼν ἐπὶ τὸ βουλεῖον ἐδεῖτο τοῦ ἐπὶ τῆι τιμῆι ταύτηι καθεστῶτος ἀπαγαγεῖν αὐτὸν ἐπὶ τὴν βουλήν· ὃ δε ὑπεδέξατό τε καὶ ἐπεὶ καιρὸς ἦν ἀπήγαγε. καταστὰς δὲ ὁ Μελησιγένης ἔλεξε περὶ τῆς τροφῆς τὸν λόγον ὃν καὶ ἐν ταῖς λέσχαις ἔλεγεν. ὡς δὲ εἶπεν, ἐξελθὼν ἐκάθητο·

13 οἳ δὲ ἐβουλεύοντο ὅ τι χρεὼν εἴη ἀποκρίνασθαι αὐτῶι αὐτῶι m: τούτωι m. προθυμουμένου δὲ τοῦ ἀπαγαγόντος ἀπαγαγόντος m: ἀπάγοντος m αὐτὸν καὶ ἄλλων ὅσοι τῶν βουλευτέων ἐν ταῖς λέσχαις ἐπήκοοι ἐγένοντο, τῶν βουλευτέων βουλευτέων m: βασιλέων m ἕνα λέγεται ἐναντιωθῆναι τῆι χρήμηι αὐτοῦ, ἄλλα τε πολλὰ λέγοντα καὶ ὡς εἰ τοὺς ὁμήρους δόξει τρέφειν αὐτοῖς, ὅμιλον πολλόν τε καὶ ἀχρεῖον ἕξουσιν. ἐντεῦθεν δὲ καὶ τοὔνομα Ὅμηρος ἐπεκράτησε τῶι Μελησιγένει ἀπὸ τῆς συμφορῆς· οἱ γὰρ Κυμαῖοι τοὺς τυφλοὺς ὁμήρους λέγουσιν· ὥστε πρότερον ὀνομαζομένου αὐτοῦ Μελησιγένεος τοῦτο γενέσθαι τοὔνομα Ὅμηρος.

14 καὶ οἱ ξένοι διήνεγκαν ὅτε μνήμην αὐτοῦ ἐποιοῦντο. ἐτελεύτα δ’ οὖν ὁ λόγος τῶι ἄρχοντι μὴ τρέφειν τὸν Ὅμηρον, ἔδοξε δέ πως καὶ τῆι ἄλληι βουλῆι. ἐπελθὼν δὲ ὁ ἐπιστάτης καὶ παρεζόμενος αὐτῶι διηγήσατο τοὺς ἐναντιωθέντας λόγους τῆι χρήμηι αὐτοῦ καὶ τὰ δόξαντα τῆι βουλῆι. ὃ δὲ ὡς ἤκουσεν, ἐσυμφόρηνέ τε καὶ λέγει τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 4·

οἵηι μ’ αἴσηι δῶκε πατὴρ Ζεὺς κύρμα γενέσθαι,
νήπιον αἰδοίης ἐπὶ γούνασι μητρὸς ἀτάλλων.
ἥν ποτ’ ἐπύργωσαν βουλῆι Διὸς αἰγιόχοιο
λαοὶ Φρίκωνος, μάργων ἐπιβήτορες ἵππων,
ὁπλότεροι μαλεροῖο πυρὸς κρίνοντες Ἄρηα,
Αἰολίδα Σμύρνην ἁλιγείτονα, πότνιαν ἀκτήν πότνιαν ἀκτήν Scaliger: ποτνιάνακτον M
ἥν τε δι’ ἀγλαὸν εἶσιν ὕδωρ ἱεροῖο Μέλητος·
ἔνθεν ἀπορνύμεναι κοῦραι Διός, ἀγλαὰ τέκνα,
ἠθελέτην κλῆισαι δῖαν χθόνα καὶ πόλιν ἀνδρῶν·
οἳ δ’ ἀπανηνάσθην ἱερὴν ὄπα, φῆμιν, ἀοιδήν,
ἀφραδίηι. τῶν μέν τε παθών τις φράσσεται αὖτις,
ὅς σφιν ὀνείδεσσιν τὸν ἐμὸν διεμήσατο πότμον.
κῆρα δ’ ἐγὼ τήν μοι θεὸς ὤπασε γεινομένωι περ
τλήσομαι, ἀκράαντα φέρων τετληότι θυμῶι,
οὐδέ τι μοι φίλα γυῖα μένειν ἱεραῖς ἐν ἀγυιαῖς
  Κύμης ὁρμαίνουσι· μέγας δέ με θυμὸς ἐπείγει
δῆμον ἐς ἀλλοδαπῶν ἰέναι ὀλίγον περ ἐόντα.

15 μετὰ τοῦτο ἀπαλλάσσεται ἐκ τῆς Κύμης ἐς Φωκαίην, Κυμαίοις ἐπαρησάμενος μηδένα ποιητὴν δόκιμον ἐν τῆι χώρηι γενέσθαι ὅστις Κυμαίους ἐπαγλαϊεῖ. ἀπικόμενος δὲ ἐς Φωκαίην τῶι αὐτῶι τρόπωι ἐβιότευεν ἐβιότευεν m: ἐβιότευσεν m, ἔπεα ἐνδεικνύμενος ἐν ταῖς λέσχαις κατίζων. ἐν δὲ τῆι Φωκαίηι τοῦτον τὸν χρόνον Θεστορίδης τις ἦν γράμματα διδάσκων τοὺς παῖδας, ἀνὴρ οὐ κρήγυος· κατανοήσας δὲ τοῦ Ὁμήρου τὴν ποίησιν, λόγους τοιούσδε αὐτῶι προσήνεγκε, φὰς ἑτοῖμος εἶναι θεραπεύειν καὶ τρέφειν αὐτὸν ἀναλαβών, εἰ ἐθέλοι ἅ τε πεποιημένα εἴη αὐτῶι τῶν ἐπέων ἀναγράψασθαι καὶ ἄλλα ποιῶν πρὸς ἑωυτὸν ἀναφέρειν αἰεί.

16 τῶι δὲ Ὁμήρωι ἀκούσαντι ἔδοξε ποιητέα εἶναι ταῦτα· ἐνδεὴς γὰρ ἦν τῶν ἀναγκαίων καὶ θεραπείης. διατρίβων δὲ παρὰ τῶι Θεστορίδηι ποιεῖ Ἰλιάδα τὴν ἐλάσσω, ἧς ἡ ἀρχή Fr. 1 Davies·

Ἴλιον ἀείδω καὶ Δαρδανίην εὔπωλον,
ἧς πέρι πολλὰ πάθον Δαναοὶ θεράποντες Ἄρηος·

καὶ τὴν καλουμένην Φωκαΐδα, ἥν φασιν οἱ Φωκαεῖς Ὅμηρον παρ’ αὐτοῖσι ποιῆσαι. ἐπεὶ δὲ τήν τε Φωκαΐδα καὶ τἄλλα πάντα παρὰ τοῦ Ὁμήρου ὁ Θεστορίδης ἐγράψατο, διενοήθη ἐκ τῆς Φωκαίης ἀπαλλάσσεσθαι, τὴν ποίησιν θέλων τοῦ Ὁμήρου ἐξιδιώσασθαι. καὶ οὐκ ἔτι ὁμοίως ἐν ἐπιμελείαι εἶχε τὸν Ὅμηρον· ὃ δὲ λέγει αὐτῶι τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 5·

Θεστορίδης, θνητοῖσιν ἀνωΐστων πολέων περ,
οὐδὲν ἀφραστότερον πέλεται νόου ἀνθρώποισι.

ὁ μὲν δὴ Θεστορίδης ἐκ τῆς Φωκαίης ἀπηλλάγη ἐς τὴν Χίον καὶ διδασκαλίην διδασκαλίην m: διδασκαλεῖον m κατεσκευάσατο· καὶ τὰ ἔπεα ἐπιδεικνύμενος ὡς ἑωυτοῦ ἐόντα ἔπαινόν τε πολλὸν εἶχε καὶ ὠφελεῖτο· ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος πάλιν τὸν αὐτὸν τρόπον διηιτᾶτο ἐν τῆι Φωκαίηι, ἀπὸ τῆς ποιήσιος τὴν βιοτὴν ἔχων.

17 χρόνωι δὲ οὐ πολλῶι μετέπειτα ἄνδρες Χῖοι ἔμποροι ἀπίκοντο ἐς τὴν Φωκαίην. ἀκούσαντες δὲ τῶν ἐπέων τοῦ Ὁμήρου ἃ πρότερον ἀκηκόεσαν πολλάκις ἐν τῆι Χίωι τοῦ Θεστορίδεω, ἐξήγγελον Ὁμήρωι ὅτι ἐν Χίωι ἐν Χίωι m: ἐν τῆι Χίωι m τις ἐπιδεικνύμενος τὰ ἔπεα ταῦτα γραμμάτων διδάσκαλος κάρτα πολλὸν ἔπαινον ἔχει. ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος κατενόησεν ὅτι Θεστορίδης ἂν εἴη, καὶ παντὶ θυμῶι ἐσπούδαζεν ἐς τὴν Χίον ἀπίκεσθαι. καταβὰς δὲ ἐπὶ τὸν λιμένα, ἐς μὲν τὴν Χίον οὐ καταλαμβάνει οὐδὲν πλοῖον πλέον, ἐς δὲ τὴν Ἐρυθραίην τινὲς ἐπὶ ξύλα παρεσκευάζοντο πλεῖν. καλῶς δὲ εἶχε τῶι Ὁμήρωι δι’ Ἐρυθρέων τὸν πλοῦν ποιήσασθαι, καὶ προσελθὼν ἔχρηιζε τῶν ναυτέων δέξασθαι αὐτὸν σύμπλουν, πολλά τε καὶ προσαγωγὰ λέγων οἷς σφέας ἔμελλε πείσειν. τοῖς δὲ ἔδοξε δέξασθαι αὐτόν, καὶ ἐκέλευον ἐσβαίνειν εἰς τὸ πλοῖον. ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος πολλὰ ἐπαινέσας αὐτοὺς ἐσέβη, καὶ ἐπεὶ ἕζετο λέγει τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 6·

κλῦθι, Ποσείδαον μεγαλοσθενὲς ἐννοσίγαιε,
εὐρυχόρου μεδέων ἠδὲ ζαθέου ζαθέου Ruhnken: ξανθοῦ M Ἑλικῶνος,
δὸς δ’ οὖρον καλὸν καὶ ἀπήμονα νόστον ἰδέσθαι
ναύταις, οἳ νηὸς πομποὶ ἠδ’ ἀρχοὶ ἔασι.
δὸς δ’ ἐς ὑπωρείαν ὑψικρήμνοιο Μίμαντος
αἰδοίων μ’ ἐλθόντα βροτῶν ὁσίων τε κυρῆσαι,
φῶτά τε τισαίμην ὃς ἐμὸν νόον ἠπεροπεύσας
ὠδύσατο Ζῆνα ξένιον ξενίην τε τράπεζην.

18 ἐπεὶ δὲ ἀπίκοντο εὐπλοήσαντες ἐς τὴν Ἐρυθραίην, τότε μὲν Ὅμηρος τὴν αὖλιν ἐπὶ τῶι πλοίωι ἐποιήσατο· τῆι δὲ ὑστεραίηι ἔχρηιζε τῶν ναυτέων τινὰ ἡγήσασθαι αὐτῶι ἐς τὴν πόλιν, οἳ δὲ συνέπεμψαν ἕνα αὐτῶι. πορευόμενος δὲ Ὅμηρος ἐπεὶ ἔτυχε τῆς Ἐρυθραίης τραχείης τε καὶ ὀρεινῆς ἐούσης, φθέγγεται τάδε τὰ ἔπεα Epigrammata 7·

πότνια Γῆ, πάνδωρε, δότειρα μελίφρονος ὄλβου,
ὡς ἄρα δὴ τοῖς μὲν φωτῶν εὔοχθος ἐτύχθης,
τοῖσι δὲ δύσβωλος καὶ τρηχεῖ’, οἷς ἐχολώθης.

ἀπικόμενος δὲ ἐς τὴν πόλιν τῶν Ἐρυθραίων ἐπηρώτησε περὶ τοῦ ἐς τὴν Χίον πλοῦ· καί τινος προσελθόντος αὐτῶι τῶν ἑωρακότων ἐν τῆι Φωκαίηι καὶ ἀσπασαμένου, ἔχρηιζεν αὐτοῦ συνεξευρεῖν αὐτῶι πλοῖον, ὅπως ἂν ἐς τὴν Χίον διαβαίη.

19 ἐκ μὲν δὴ τοῦ λιμένος οὐδὲν ἦν ἀπόστολον, ἄγει δὲ αὐτὸν ἔνθα τῶν ἁλιέων τὰ πλοῖα ὁρμίζεται. καί πως ἐντυγχάνει μέλλουσί τισι διαπλεῖν ἐς τὴν Χῖον, ὧν ἐδέετο προσελθὼν ὁ ἄγων αὐτὸν ἀναλαβεῖν τὸν Ὅμηρον. οἳ δὲ οὐδένα λόγον ποιησάμενοι ἀνήγοντο· ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος φθέγγεται τάδε τὰ ἔπεα Epigrammata 8·

ναῦται ποντοπόροι, στυγερῆι ἐναλίγκιοι ἄτηι ἄτηι M: αἴσηι Suda
πτωκάσιν αἰθυίηισι, βίον δύσζηλον ἔχοντες,
αἰδεῖσθε ξενίοιο Διὸς σέβας ὑψιμέδοντος·
δεινὴ γὰρ μέτ’ ὄπις ξενίου Διός μέτ’ ὄπις ξενίου Διός M: μετόπισθεν ὄπις Διός Suda, ὅς κ’ ἀλίτηται.

ἀναχθεῖσι δὲ αὐτοῖς συνέβη ἐναντίου ἀνέμου γενομένου παλινδρομῆσαι καὶ ἐς τὸ χωρίον ἀναδραμεῖν ὅθεν ἀνηγάγοντο καὶ τὸν Ὅμηρον καταλαβεῖν ἔτι καθήμενον καταλαβεῖν ἔτι καθήμενον edd.: ἀναλαβεῖν ἐπικαθήμενον M ἐπὶ τῆς κυματωγῆς. μαθὼν δὲ αὐτοὺς πεπαλινδρομηκότας ἔλεξε τάδε·

“ὑμᾶς ὦ ξένοι ἔλαβεν ὁ ἄνεμος ἀντίος γενόμενος· ἀλλ’ ἔτι καὶ νῦν με δέξασθε καὶ ὁ πλοῦς ὑμῖν ἔσται”. Cf. Epigrammata 9

οἱ δὲ ἁλιεῖς ἐν μεταμελίηι γενόμενοι, ὅτι οὐ καὶ πρότερον ἐδέξαντο, εἰπόντες ὅτι οὐ καταλιμπάνουσιν ἢν ἐθέλοι συμπλεῖν, ἐκέλευον ἐσβαίνειν· καὶ οὕτως ἀναλαβόντες αὐτὸν ἀνήχθησαν, καὶ ἴσχουσιν ἐπ’ ἀκτῆς.

20 οἱ μὲν δὴ ἁλιεῖς πρὸς ἔργον ἐτράπησαν· ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος τὴν μὲν νύκτα ἐπὶ τοῦ αἰγιαλοῦ κατέμεινε, τὴν δὲ ἡμέραν πορευόμενος καὶ πλανώμενος ἀπίκετο ἐς τὸ χωρίον τοῦτο ὃ Πίτυς καλεῖται. κἀνταῦθα αὐτῶι ἀναπαυομένωι τὴν νύκτα ἐπιπίπτει καρπὸς τῆς πίτυος, ὃν δὴ μετεξέτεροι στρόβιλον, οἳ δὲ κῶνον καλέουσιν. ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος φθέγγεται τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 10·

ἄλλη τίς σου πεύκη ἀμείνονα καρπὸν ἵησιν
Ἴδης ἐν κορυφῆισι πολυπτύχου ἠνεμοέσσης,
ἔνθα σίδηρος Ἄρηος ἐπιχθονίοισι βροτοῖσιν
ἔσσεται, εὖτ’ ἄν μιν Κεβρήνιοι ἄνδρες ἔχωσιν.

τὰ δὲ Κεβρήνια τοῦτον τὸν χρόνον κτίζειν οἱ Κυμαῖοι παρεσκευάζοντο πρὸς τῆι Ἴδηι· καὶ γίνεται αὐτόθι σίδηρος πολύς πολύς om. m.

21 ἐντεῦθεν δὲ ἀναστὰς Ὅμηρος ἐπορεύετο κατὰ φωνήν τινα αἰγῶν νεμομένων. ὡς δὲ ὑλάκτεον αὐτὸν οἱ κύνες, ἀνέκραγεν· ὁ δὲ Γλαῦκος ὡς ἤκουσε τῆς φωνῆς, ἦν γὰρ τοῦτο ὄνομα τῶι νέμοντι τὰς αἶγας, ἐπέδραμεν ὀτραλέως, τάς τε κύνας ἀνεκαλεῖτο καὶ ἀπεσόβησεν ἀπὸ τοῦ Ὁμήρου. ἐπὶ πολὺν δὲ χρόνον ἐν θωύματι ἦν, ὅκως τυφλὸς ἐὼν μόνος ἀπίκοιτο ἐς τοιούτους χώρους, καὶ ὅτι θέλων· προσελθών τέ μιν ἱστορέειν, ὅστις τε ἦν καὶ τίνι τρόπωι ἀπίκοιτο ἐς τόπους ἀοικήτους καὶ ἀστιβέα χωρία, καὶ τίνος κεχρημένος εἴη. ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος αὐτῶι πᾶσαν τὴν ἑωυτοῦ πάθην καταλεγόμενος ἐς οἶκτον προηγάγετο· ἦν γὰρ, ὡς ἔοικεν, οὐδ’ ἀγνώμων ὁ Γλαῦκος. ἀναλαβὼν δὲ αὐτὸν ἀνήγαγεν ἐπὶ τὸν σταθμόν, πῦρ τε ἀνακαύσας δεῖπνον παρασκευάζει, καὶ παραθεὶς δειπνεῖν ἐκέλευεν ὁ Γλαῦκος.

22 τῶν δὲ κυνῶν μὴ ἐσθιόντων μὴ ἐσθιόντων M: ἑστώτων Suda καὶ ὑλακτούντων δειπνοῦντας, καθάπερ εἰώθεσαν, λέγει πρὸς τὸν Γλαῦκον Ὅμηρος τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 11·

Γλαῦκε πέπων, ἐπιών τοι πέπων ἐπιών τοι m: βροτῶν ἐπιόπτα m (cf. Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος) ἔπος τί τοι ἐν φρεσὶ θήσω·
πρῶτον μὲν κυσὶ δεῖπνον ἐπ’ αὐλείηισι θύρηισιν
δοῦναι· ὣς γὰρ ἄμεινον· ὃ γὰρ καὶ πρῶτον πρῶτον M: πρόσθεν Suda ἀκούει
ἀνδρὸς ἐπερχομένου καὶ ἐς ἕρκεα θηρὸς ἰόντος.

ταῦτα ἀκούσας ὁ Γλαῦκος ἥσθη τῆι παραινέσει, καὶ ἐν θωύματι εἶχεν αὐτόν. δειπνήσαντες δὲ διὰ λόγων εἱστιῶντο· ἀπηγεομένου δὲ Ὁμήρου τήν τε πλάνην τὴν ἑωυτοῦ καὶ τὰς πόλεις ἃς ἐσαπίκοιτο, ἔκπληκτος ἦν ὁ Γλαῦκος ἀκούων. καὶ τότε μέν, ἐπεὶ ὥρη κοίτου ἦν, ἀνεπαύετο·

23 τῆι δὲ ὑστεραίηι διενοήθη ὁ Γλαῦκος πρὸς τὸν δεσπότην πορευθῆναι σημανέων τὰ περὶ περὶ m: ὑπὲρ τοῦ m Ὁμήρου. ἐπιτρέψας δὲ τῶι συνδούλωι νέμειν τὰς αἶγας, τὸν Ὅμηρον καταλείπει ἔνδον, εἰπὼν πρὸς αὐτὸν ὅτι διὰ ταχέων πορεύσομαι, καταβὰς δὲ ἐς Βολισσόν, ἔστι δὲ πλησίον τοῦ χωρίου τούτου, καὶ συγγενόμενος τῶι δεσπότηι ἀπηγέετο ὑπὲρ Ὁμήρου πᾶσαν τὴν ἀλήθειαν, περί τε αὐτοῦ τῆς ἀπίξιος ἐν θωύματι ποιεύμενος, ἠρώτεέ τε ὅ τι χρὴ ποιέειν περὶ αὐτοῦ αὐτοῦ m: αὐτόν m. ὃ δὲ ὀλίγα μὲν προσίετο τῶν λόγων, κατεγίνωσκε δὲ τοῦ Γλαύκου ὡς ἄφρονος ἐόντος τοὺς ἀναπήρους δεχομένου καὶ τρέφοντος· ἐκέλευε δὲ ὅμως τὸν ξεῖνον ἄγειν πρὸς ἑαυτόν.

24 ἐλθὼν δὲ πρὸς τὸν Ὅμηρον διηγήσατο ταῦτα ὁ Γλαῦκος καὶ ἐκέλευσεν αὐτὸν πορεύεσθαι αὐτὸν πορεύεσθαι m: πορεύεσθαι τοῦτον m, οὕτω γὰρ εὖ πρήξειν· ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος ἤθελε πορεύεσθαι. ἀναλαβὼν οὖν αὐτὸν ὁ Γλαῦκος ἤγαγε πρὸς τὸν δεσπότην. διὰ λόγων δὲ ἰὼν τῶι Ὁμήρωι ὁ Χῖος εὑρίσκει ἐόντα δεξιὸν καὶ πολλῶν ἔμπειρον· ἔπειθέ τε αὐτὸν ἔπειθέ τε αὐτὸν M: ἔπειθε τε αὐτόθι Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος μένειν καὶ τῶν παιδίων ἐπιμέλειαν ποιέεσθαι· ἦσαν γὰρ τῶι Χίωι παῖδες ἐν ἡλικίηι. τούτους οὖν αὐτῶι παρατίθεται παρατίθεται m: παρατίθησι m παιδεύειν, ὃ δὲ ἔπρησσε ταῦτα. καὶ τοὺς Κέρκωπας καὶ Βατραχομαχίαν καὶ Ψαρομαχίην καὶ Ἑπταπακτικὴν καὶ Ἐπικιχλίδας καὶ τἄλλα πάντα ὅσα παίγνιά ἐστιν Ὁμήρου ἐνταῦθα ἐποίησε παρὰ τῶι Χίωι ἐν Βολισσῶι, ὥστε καὶ ἐν τῆι πόλει περιβόητος ἤδη ἐγένετο ἐν τῆι ποιήσει. καὶ ὁ μὲν Θεστορίδης, ὡς τάχιστα ἐπύθετο αὐτὸν παρεόντα, ὤιχετο ἐκπλέων ἐκ τῆς Χίου.

25 χρόνου δὲ προϊόντος δεηθεὶς τοῦ Χίου πορεῦσαι αὐτὸν ἐς τὴν Χίον ἀπίκετο εἰς τὴν πόλιν· καὶ διδασκαλεῖον κατασκευασάμενος ἐδίδασκε παῖδας τὰ ἔπεα. καὶ κάρτα δεξιὸς κατεδόκεεν εἶναι τοῖς Χίοις, καὶ πολλοὶ θωυμασταὶ αὐτοῦ καθειστήκεσαν. συλλεξάμενος δὲ βίον ἱκανὸν γυναῖκα ἔγημεν, ἐξ ἧς αὐτῶι θυγατέρες δύο ἐγένοντο· καὶ ἣ μὲν αὐτῶν ἄγαμος ἐτελεύτησε, τὴν δὲ συνώικισεν ἀνδρὶ Χίωι.

26 ἐπιχειρήσας δὲ τῆι ποιήσει ἀπέδωκε χάριν ἣν εἶχε, πρῶτον μὲν Μέντορι τῶι Ιθακησίωι ἐν τῆι Ὀδυσσείηι, ὅτι μιν κάμνοντα τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς ἐν Ἰθάκηι ἐνοσήλευεν ἐκτενέως, τοὔνομα αὐτοῦ ἐναρμόσας ἐς τὴν ποίησιν Ὀδυσσέως τε ἑταῖρον φὰς εἶναι, ποιήσας Ὀδυσσέα, ὡς ἐς Τροίην ἔπλεε, Μέντορι ἐπιτρέψαι τὸν οἶκον ὡς ἐόντι Ἰθακησίων ἀρίστωι καὶ δικαιοτάτωι. πολλαχῆι δὲ καὶ ἄλληι τῆς ποιήσεως τιμῶν αὐτὸν τὴν Ἀθηνᾶν, ὁπότε ἐς λόγον τινὶ καθίσταιτο, τῶι Μέντορι οἰκυῖην ποιεῖ. ἀπέδωκε δὲ καὶ Φημίωι τῶι ἑαυτοῦ διδασκάλωι τροφεῖα καὶ διδασκαλεῖα ἐν τῆι Ὀδυσσείηι, μάλιστα ἐν τοῖσδε τοῖς ἔπεσι Hom. Od. 1.153-5·

κήρυξ δ’ ἐν χερσὶν κίθαριν περικαλλέ’ ἔθηκε
Φημίωι, ὃς δὴ πολλὸν ἐκαίνυτο πάντας ἀείδων·

καὶ πάλιν

αὐτὰρ ὃ φορμίζων ἀνεβάλλετο καλὸν ἀείδειν.

μέμνηται δὲ καὶ τοῦ ναυκλήρου μεθ’ οὗ ἐκπεριέπλευσε καὶ εἶδε πόλιάς τε πολλὰς καὶ χώρας, ὧι ὄνομα ἦν Μέντης, ἐν τοῖς ἔπεσι τοῖσδε Hom. Od. 1.180-1·

Μέντης Ἀγχιάλοιο δαΐφρονος εὔχομαι εἶναι
υἱός, ἀτὰρ Ταφίοισι φιληρέτμοισιν ἀνάσσω.

ἀπέδωκε δὲ χάριν καὶ Τυχίωι τῶι σκυτεῖ, ὃς ἐδέξατο αὐτὸν ἐν τῶι Νέωι τείχει προσελθόντα πρὸς τὸ σκυτεῖον, ἐν τοῖς ἔπεσι καταζεύξας ἐν τῆι Ἰλιάδι τοῖσδε Hom. Il. 7.219-21·

Αἴας δ’ ἐγγύθεν ἦλθε φέρων σάκος ἠΰτε πύργον,
χάλκεον ἑπταβόειον, ὅ οἱ Τυχίος κάμε τεύχων,
σκυτοτόμων ὄχ’ ἄριστος, Ὕληι ἔνι οἰκία ναίων.

27 ἀπὸ δὲ τῆς ποιήσεως ταύτης εὐδοκίμει Ὅμηρος περί τε τὴν Ἰωνίην, καὶ ἐς τὴν Ἑλλάδα ἤδη περὶ αὐτοῦ λόγος ἀνεφέρετο. κατοικέων δὲ ἐν τῆι Χίωι καὶ εὐδοκιμέων περὶ τὴν ποίησιν, ἀπικνεομένων πολλῶν πρὸς αὐτόν, συνεβούλευον οἱ ἐντυγχάνοντες αὐτῶι ἐς τὴν Ἑλλάδα ἀπικέσθαι· ὃ δὲ προσεδέξατο τὸν λόγον, καὶ κάρτα ἐπεθύμει ἀποδημῆσαι.

28 κατανοήσας δὲ ὅτι ἐς μὲν Ἄργος πολλαὶ καὶ μεγάλαι εἶεν εὐλογίαι πεποιημέναι, ἐς δὲ τὰς Ἀθήνας οὔ, ἐμποιεῖ ἐς τὴν ποίησιν, ἐς μὲν Ἰλιάδα τὴν μεγάλην, Ἐρεχθέα μεγαλύνων ἐν Νεῶν καταλόγωι τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Il. 2.547-8·

δῆμον Ἐρεχθῆος μεγαλήτορος, ὅν ποτ’ Ἀθήνη
θρέψε Διὸς θυγάτηρ, τέκε δὲ ζείδωρος ἄρουρα·

καὶ τὸν στρατηγὸν αὐτῶν Μενεσθέα αἰνέσας ὡς πάντων εἴη ἄριστος τάξαι πεζὸν στρατὸν καὶ ἱππότας, ἐν τοῖσδε τοῖς ἔπεσιν εἶπε Il. 2.552-4·

τῶν αὖθ’ ἡγεμόνευεν υἱὸς Πετεῶιο Μενεσθεύς.
τῶι δ’ οὔ πώ τις ὁμοῖος ἐπιχθόνιος γένετ’ ἀνήρ
κοσμῆσαι ἵππους τε καὶ ἀνέρας ἀσπιδιώτας·

Αἴαντα δὲ τὸν Τελαμῶνος καὶ Σαλαμινίους ἐν Νεῶν καταλόγωι ἔταξε πρὸς Ἀθηναίους, λέγων τάδε τάδε m: ὧδε m· Hom. Il. 2.557-8

Αἴας δ’ ἐκ Σαλαμῖνος ἄγεν δυοκαίδεκα νῆας,
στῆσε δ’ ἄγων ἵν’ Ἀθηναίων ἵσταντο φάλαγγες·

ἐς δὲ τὴν Ὀδυσσείην τάδε ἐποίησεν, ὡς Ἀθηνᾶ ἐς λόγους ἐλθοῦσα τῶι Ὀδυσσεῖ ἐς τὴν Ἀθηναίων πόλιν ἀπίκετο, τιμῶσα ταύτην τῶν ἄλλων πόλεων πόλεων m: πολλῶν m μάλιστα Hom. Od. 7.80-1·

ἵκετο δ’ ἐς Μαραθῶνα καὶ εὐρυχόρους ἐς Ἀθήνας,
δῦνε δ’ Ἐρεχθῆος πυκινὸν δόμον.

29 ἐμποιήσας δὲ ἐς τὴν ποίησιν ταῦτα καὶ παρασκευασάμενος, ἐς Ἑλλάδα βουλόμενος ποιήσασθαι τὸν πλοῦν, προσίσχει τῆι Σάμωι. ἔτυχον δὲ οἱ ἐκεῖσε τὸν τότε καιρὸν ἄγοντες ἑορτὴν Ἀπατούρια. καί τις τῶν Σαμίων ἰδὼν τὸν Ὅμηρον ἀπιγμένον, πρότερον αὐτὸν ὀπωπὼς ἐν Χίωι, ἐλθὼν ἐς τοὺς φράτορας διηγήσατο, ἐν ἐπαίνωι μεγάλωι ποιεύμενος αὐτόν. οἱ δὲ φράτορες ἐκέλευον ἄγειν αὐτόν· ὃ δὲ ἐντυχὼν τῶι Ὁμήρωι ἔλεξεν, “ὦ ξένε, Ἀπατούρια ἀγούσης τῆς πόλιος καλέουσί σε οἱ φράτορες οἱ ἡμέτεροι συνεορτάσοντα.” ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος ἔφη ταῦτα ποιήσειν, καὶ ἤιει μετὰ τοῦ καλέσαντος.

30 πορευόμενος δὲ ἐγχρίμπτεται γυναιξὶ Κουροτρόφωι θυούσαις ἐν τῆι τριόδωι· ἡ δὲ ἱέρεια εἶπε πρὸς αὐτὸν δυσχεράνασα τῆι ὄψει, “ἄνερ, ἀπὸ τῶν ἱερῶν.” ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος ἐς θυμόν τε ἔβαλε τὸ ῥηθέν, καὶ ἤρετο τὸν ἄγοντα τίς τε εἴη ὁ φθεγξάμενος, καὶ τίνι θεῶν ἱερὰ θύεται· ὃ δὲ αὐτῶι διηγήσατο ὅτι γυνὴ εἴη, Κουροτρόφωι θύουσα. ὃ δὲ ἀκούσας λέγει τάδε τὰ ἔπεα Epigrammata 12, Athenaeus 592a·

κλῦθί μοι εὐχομένωι, Κουροτρόφε, δὸς δὲ γυναῖκα
τήνδε νέων μὲν ἀνήνασθαι φιλότητα καὶ εὐνήν,
ἣ δ’ ἐπιτερπέσθω πολιοκροτάφοισι γέρουσιν,
ὧν ὥρη μὲν ἀπήμβλυνται, θυμὸς δὲ μενοινᾶι.

31 ἐπεὶ δὲ ἦλθεν ἐς τὴν φρήτρην καὶ τοῦ οἴκου ἔνθα δὴ ἐδαίνυντο ἐπὶ τὸν οὐδὸν ἔστη, οἳ μὲν λέγουσι καιομένου πυρὸς ἐν τῶι οἴκωι, οἳ δέ φασι τότε ἐκκαῦσαι σφᾶς, ἐπειδὴ Ὅμηρος τὰ ἔπεα εἶπεν Epigrammata 13; cf. et Cert. 16, Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος. χρήματα … ἰδέσθαι M: λαὸς δ’ εἰν ἀγορῆισι καθήμενος εἰσοράασθαι / αἰθομένου δὲ πυρὸς γεραρώτερος οἶκος ἰδέσθαι / ἤματι χειμερίωι ὁπότ’ ἂν νείφηισι Κρονίων Cert.·

ἀνδρὸς μὲν στέφανος παῖδες στέφανος παῖδες m: παῖδες στέφανος m., Suda: στέφανοι παῖδες Cert., πύργοι δὲ πόληος,
ἵπποι δ’ ἐν πεδίωι ἐν πεδίωι M., Suda: αὖ πεδίου Cert. κόσμος, νῆες δὲ θαλάσσης,
χρήματα δ’ αὔξει οἶκον· ἀτὰρ γεραροὶ βασιλῆες
ἥμενοι εἰν ἀγορῆι κόσμος τ’ ἄλλοισι ὁρᾶσθαι·
αἰθομένου δὲ πυρὸς γεραρώτερος οἶκος ἰδέσθαι.

εἰσελθὼν δὲ καὶ κατακλιθεὶς ἐδαίνυτο μετὰ τῶν φρατόρων· καὶ αὐτὸν ἐτίμων καὶ ἐν θωύματι εἶχον. καὶ τότε μὲν τὴν κοίτην αὐτοῦ ἐποιήσατο Ὅμηρος·

32 τῆι δὲ εἰσαύριον ἀποπορευόμενον ἰδόντες κεραμέες τινες κάμινον ἐγκαίοντες κεράμου λεπτοῦ, προσεκαλέσαντο αὐτόν, πεπυσμένοι ὅτι σοφὸς εἴη, καὶ ἐκέλευόν σφιν ἀεῖσαι, φάμενοι δώσειν αὐτῶι τοῦ κεράμου καὶ ὅ τι ἂν ἄλλο ἔχωσιν. ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος ἀείδει αὐτοῖς τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 14, ἃ καλεῖται Κάμινος·

εἰ μὲν δώσετε μισθὸν ἀείσω ἀείσω m: ἀοιδῆς m, Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος, ὦ κεραμῆες,
δεῦρ’ ἄγ’ Ἀθηναίη, καὶ ὑπείρεχε ὑπείρεχε M: ὑπέρσχεθε Suda χεῖρα καμίνου,
εὖ δὲ μελανθεῖεν κότυλοι καὶ πάντα κάναστρα κάναστρα Wilamowitz, West (cf. Pollux 10.85): μάλ’ ἱερὰ M,
φρυχθῆναί τε καλῶς καὶ τιμῆς ὦνον ἀρέσθαι,
πολλὰ μὲν εἰν ἀγορῆι πωλεύμενα, πολλὰ δ’ ἀγυιαῖς,
πολλὰ δὲ κερδῆναι, ἡμῖν δὲ δὴ ὥς σφι νοῆσαι.
ἢν δ’ ἐπ’ ἀναιδείην τρεφθέντες ψεύδε’ ἄρησθε,
συγκαλέω δ’ἤπειτα καμίνωι καμίνωι m: καμίνων m, Suda δηλητῆρας,
Σύντριβ’ ὁμῶς Σμάραγόν τε καὶ Ἄσβετον ἠδὲ Σαβάκτην Σαβάκτην Suda: γ’ Ἄβακτον M
Ὠμόδαμόν θ’, ὃς τῆιδε τέχνηι κακὰ πολλὰ πορίζει·
†πεῖθε† †πεῖθε† edd. πυραίθουσαν καὶ δώματα, σὺν δὲ κάμινος
πᾶσα κυκηθείη, κεραμέων μέγα κωκυσάντων.
ὡς γνάθος ἱππείη βρύκει, βρύκοι δὲ κάμινος,
πάντ’ ἔντοσθ’ αὐτῆς κεραμήϊα λεπτὰ ποιοῦσα.
δεῦρο καὶ Ἠελίου θύγατερ, πολυφάρμακε Κίρκη·
ἄγρια φάρμακα βάλλε, κάκου δ’ αὐτούς τε καὶ ἔργα·
δεῦρο δὲ καὶ Χείρων ἀγέτω πολέας Κενταύρους,
οἵ θ’ Ἡρακλῆος Ἡρακλῆος m: Ἡρακλείους m χεῖρας φύγον, οἵ τ’ ἀπόλοντο·
τύπτοιεν τάδε ἔργα κακῶς, πίπτοι δὲ κάμινος πίπτοι δὲ κάμινος m, Suda: τύπτοι δὲ κάμινον m,
αὐτοὶ δ’ οἰμώζοντες ὁρώιατο ἔργα πονηρά·
γηθήσω δ’ ὁρόων αὐτῶν κακοδαίμονα τέχνην.
ὃς δέ χ’ ὑπερκύψηι, περὶ τούτου πᾶν τὸ πρόσωπον
φλεχθείη, ὡς πάντες ἐπίσταιντ’ ἐπίσταιντ’ m: ἐπίστωντ’ m αἴσιμα ῥέζειν.

33 παραχειμάζων δὲ ἐν τῆι Σάμωι, ταῖς νουμηνίαις προσπορευόμενος πρὸς τὰς οἰκίας τὰς εὐδαιμονεστάτας ἐλάμβανέ τι ἀείδων τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 15, ἃ καλεῖται Εἰρεσιώνη· ὡδήγουν δὲ αὐτὸν καὶ συμπαρῆσαν αἰεὶ τῶν παίδων τινὲς τῶν ἐγχωρίων·

δῶμα προσετραπόμεσθ’ ἀνδρὸς μέγα δυναμένοιο,
ὃς μέγα μὲν δύναται, μέγα δὲ βρέμει, ὄλβιος αἰεί.
αὐταὶ ἀνακλίνεσθε, θύραι· Πλοῦτος γὰρ ἔσεισι
πολλός, σὺν Πλούτωι δὲ καὶ Εὐφροσύνη τεθαλυῖα
Εἰρήνη τ’ ἀγαθή. ὅσα δ’ ἄγγεα, μεστὰ μὲν εἴη,
κυρβαίη δ’ αἰεὶ κατὰ καρδόπου ἕρποι μάζα νῦν μὲν κριθαίην εὐώπιδα σησαμόεσσαν post. μάζα add. Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος, m (Lascaris).
τοῦ παιδὸς δὲ γυνὴ κατὰ δίφρακα βήσεται ὔμμιν,
ἡμίονοι δ’ ἄξουσι κραταίποδες ἐς τόδε δῶμα,
αὐτὴ δ’ ἱστὸν ὑφαίνοι ἐπ’ ἠλέκτρωι βεβαυῖα.
νεῦμαί τοι νεῦμαι ἐνιαύσιος ὥστε χελιδών·
ἕστηκ’ ἐν προθύροις ψιλὴ πόδας· ἀλλὰ φέρ’ αἶψα / πέρσαι τῶι Ἀπόλλωνος γυιάτιδος post προθύροις add. Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος

καὶ

</poem> εἰ μέν τι δώσεις· εἰ δὲ μή, οὐχ ἑστήξομεν, οὐ γὰρ συνοικήσοντες ἐνθάδ’ ἤλθομεν. </poem>

ἤιδετο δὲ τάδε τὰ ἔπεα ἐν τῆι Σάμωι ἐπὶ πολὺν χρόνον ὑπὸ τῶν παίδων, ὅτε ἀγείροιεν ἐν τῆι ἑορτῆι τοῦ Ἀπόλλωνος.

34 ἀρχομένου δε τοῦ ἔαρος ἐπεχείρησε πλεῖν Ὅμηρος ἐς τὰς Ἀθήνας ἐκ τῆς Σάμου. καὶ ἀναχθεὶς μετά τινων ἐγχωρίων ἀπηνέχθη ἐς τὴν Ἴον· καὶ ὡρμίσθησαν οὐ κατὰ πόλιν, ἀλλ’ ἐπ’ ἀκτῆς. συνέβη δε τῶι Ὁμήρωι κατὰ πολύ τι κατὰ πολύ τι M: κατὰ τὴν ὁδόν Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος ἄρξασθαι μαλακῶς ἔχειν· ἐκβὰς δ’ ἐκ τοῦ πλοίου ἐκοιμᾶτο ἐπὶ τῆς κυματωγῆς ἀδυνάτως ἔχων. πλείους δὲ ἡμέρας ὁρμούντων αὐτῶν δι’ ἀπλοΐην, καταβαίνοντες αἰεί τινες τῶν ἐκ τῆς πόλιος ἀπεσχόλαζον παρὰ τῶι Ὁμήρωι, καὶ ἐν θωύματι εἶχον αὐτὸν ἀκούοντες αὐτοῦ.

35 τῶν δε ναυτέων καὶ τῶν ἐκ τῆς πόλιος τινῶν ἡμένων παρὰ τῶι Ὁμήρωι κατέπλωσαν παῖδες ἁλιῆες <ἐς> <ἐς> Wilamowitz τὸν τόπον, καὶ ἐκβάντες ἐκ τοῦ ἀκατίου προσελθόντες αὐτοῖς τάδε εἶπον· “ἄγετε ὦ ξένοι, ἐπακούσατε ἡμέων, ἂν ἄρα δύνησθε διαγνῶναι ἅσσ’ ἂν ὕμιν εἴπωμεν.” καί τις τῶν παρεόντων ἐκέλευε λέγειν, οἳ δὲ εἶπαν· “ἡμεῖς ἅσσα εἵλομεν κατελίπομεν, ἃ δὲ μὴ εἵλομεν φέρομεν.” οἳ δέ φασι μέτρωι εἰπεῖν αὐτούς· Cert. 18, P.Mich. inv. 2754 ll. 2-3, Procl. Vit. Hom. 5, Anon. Vit. Hom. 1.6, Anon. Vit. Hom. 2.3, Anon. Vit. Hom. 3.5, Ps.-Plut. Vit. Hom. 1.4, Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος

ἅσσ’ ἕλομεν λιπόμεσθα· ἃ δ’ οὐχ ἕλομεν φερόμεσθα.

οὐ δυναμένων δὲ τῶν παρεόντων γνῶναι τὰ ῥηθέντα, διηγήσαντο οἱ παῖδες ὅτι ἁλιεύοντες οὐδὲν ἐδύναντο ἑλεῖν, καθήμενοι δὲ ἐν τῆι γῆι ἐν τῆι γῆι m: ἐν γῆι m ἐφθειρίζοντο, καὶ ὅσους μὲν ἔλαβον τῶν φθειρῶν κατέλιπον, ὅσους δὲ μὴ ἐδύναντο, ἐς οἴκους ἀπεφέροντο. ὁ δὲ Ὅμηρος ἀκούσας ταῦτα ἔλεξε ἔλεξε m: ἔλεγε m τὰ ἔπεα τάδε Epigrammata 16·

τοίων γὰρ πατέρων ἐξ αἵματος ἐκγεγάασθε,
οὔτε βαθυκλήρων οὔτ’ ἄσπετα μῆλα νεμόντων.

36 ἐκ δὲ τῆς ἀσθενείας ταύτης συνέβη τὸν Ὅμηρον τελευτῆσαι ἐν Ἴωι, οὐ παρὰ τὸ μὴ γνῶναι τὸ παρὰ τῶν παίδων ῥηθέν, ὡς οἴονταί τινες, ἀλλὰ τῆι μαλακίηι. τελευτήσας δὲ ἐτάφη ἐν τῆι Ἴωι αὐτοῦ ἐπ’ ἀκτῆς ὑπό τε τῶν συμπλόων καὶ τῶν πολιητέων ὅσοι ἐν διαλογῆι ἐγεγένηντο αὐτῶι. καὶ τὸ ἐλεγεῖον τόδε ἐπέγραψαν Ἰῆται ὕστερον χρόνωι πολλῶι, ὡς ἤδη ἥ τε ποίησις ἐξεπεπτώκεε καὶ ἐθαυμάζετο ὑπὸ πάντων· οὐδὲ Ὁμήρου ἐστίν Cert. 18, P.Mich. inv. 2754 ll. 11-12, AP 7.3, Anon. Vit. Hom. 1.6, Anon. Vit. Hom. 2.3, Anon. Vit. Hom. 3.5, Ps.-Plut. Vit. Hom. 1.4, Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος, Tzetz. Exeg. in Il. 37·

ἐνθάδε τὴν ἱερὴν κεφαλὴν κατὰ γαῖα κάλυψεν,
ἀνδρῶν ἡρώων κοσμήτορα, θεῖον Ὅμηρον.

37 ὅτι δὲ ἦν Αἰολεὺς Ὅμηρος καὶ οὔτε Ἴων οὔτε Δωριεύς, τοῖς τε εἰρημένοις δεδήλωταί μοι καὶ δὴ καὶ τοῖσδε τεκμαίρεσθαι παρέχει· ἄνδρα ποιητὴν τηλικοῦτον εἰκός ἐστι τῶν νομίμων τῶν παρὰ τοῖς ἀνθρώποις ποιεῦντα ἐς τὴν ποίησιν ἤτοι τὰ κάλλιστα ἐξευρόντα ποιέειν ἢ τὰ ἑωυτοῦ πάτρια ἐόντα. ἤδη τοίνυν τὸ ἐνθένδε αὐτοὶ τῶν ἐπέων ἀκούοντες κρινεῖτε· ἱεροποιΐην γὰρ ἢ τὴν κρατίστην ἐξευρὼν ἐποίησεν ἢ τὴν ἑωυτοῦ πατρίδι προσήκουσαν. λέγει γὰρ ὧδε Hom. Il. 1.459-61·

αὐέρυσαν μὲν πρῶτα καὶ ἔσφαξαν καὶ ἔδειραν
μηρούς τ’ ἐξέταμον κατά τε κνίσσηι ἐκάλυψαν,
δίπτυχα ποιήσαντες, ἐπ’ αὐτῶν δ’ ὠμοθέτησαν.

ἐν τούτοις ὑπὲρ ὀσφύος οὐδὲν εἴρηται ἧι ἐς τὰ ἱερὰ χρέονται· μονώτατον γὰρ τῶν Ἑλλήνων τὸ Αἰολικὸν ἔθνος οὐ καίει ὀσφύν. δηλοῖ δὲ καὶ ἐν τοῖσδε τοῖς ἔπεσιν ὅτι Αἰολεὺς ὢν δικαίως τοῖς τούτων νόμοις ἐχρῆτο Hom. Il. 1.462-3·

καῖε δ’ ἐπὶ σχίζηις ὁ γέρων, ἐπὶ δ’ αἴθοπα οἶνον
λεῖβε· νέοι δὲ παρ’ αὐτὸν ἔχον πεμπώβολα χερσίν.

Αἰολέες γὰρ μόνοι τὰ σπλάγχνα ἐπὶ πέντε ὀβελῶν ὀπτῶσιν, οἱ δὲ ἄλλοι Ἕλληνες ἐπὶ τριῶν. καὶ γὰρ ὀνομάζουσιν οἱ Αἰολεῖς τὰ πέντε πέμπε.

38 τὰ μὲν οὖν ὑπὲρ τῆς γενέσιος καὶ τελευτῆς καὶ βίου δεδήλωταί μοι. περὶ δὲ ἡλικίης τῆς Ὁμήρου ἐκ τῶνδ’ ἄν τις ἐπισκεπτόμενος ἀκριβῶς καὶ ὀρθῶς λογίζοιτο. ἀπὸ γὰρ τῆς ἐς Ἴλιον στρατείης, ἣν Ἀγαμέμνων καὶ Μενέλαος ἤγειραν, ἔτεσιν ὕστερον ἑκατὸν καὶ τριήκοντα Λέσβος ὠικίσθη κατὰ πόλεις, πρότερον ἐοῦσα ἄπολις. μετὰ δὲ Λέσβον οἰκισθεῖσαν ἔτεσιν ὕστερον εἴκοσι Κύμη ἡ Αἰολιῶτις καὶ Φρικωνὶς καλεομένη ὠικίσθη. μετὰ δὲ Κύμην ὀκτωκαίδεκα ἔτεσιν ὕστερον Σμύρνα ὑπὸ Κυμαίων κατωικίσθη· καὶ ἐν τούτωι γίνεται Ὅμηρος. ἀφ’ οὗ δὲ Ὅμηρος ἐγένετο, ἔτεά ἐστιν ἑξακόσια εἰκοσιδύο μέχρι τῆς Ξέρξεω διαβάσεως, ἣν στρατευσάμενος ἐπὶ τοὺς Ἕλληνας καὶ ζεύξας τὸν Ἑλλήσποντον διέβη ἐκ τῆς Ἀσίας ἐς τὴν Εὐρώπην. ἀπὸ δὲ τούτου ῥηϊδίως ἐστὶν ἀριθμῆσαι τὸν χρόνον τῶι ἐθέλοντι ζητεῖν ἐκ τῶν ἀρχόντων τῶν Ἀθήνησι. τῶν δὲ Τρωϊκῶν ὕστερον γεγένηται Ὅμηρος ἔτεσιν ἑκατὸν ἑξήκοντα ὀκτώ.

HERODOTUS ON THE ORIGIN, TIME AND LIFE OF HOMER

1 Herodotus of Halicarnassus has recorded the following information on the origins, time and life of Homer, aiming to achieve the greatest accuracy. When Cyme, the old Aeolian city, was being founded, Hellenic tribes of every kind gathered there, and among those who came from Magnesia was Melanopus, son of Ithagenes son of Crethon – not a rich man, but one of modest means. This Melanopus married Omyres’ daughter in Cyme, and from that union a female child was born to him, whom he named Chretheis. When this Melanopus and his wife died, he entrusted his daughter to a man he knew very well, Cleanax of Argos.

2 When some time had passed, it happened that the girl fell pregnant after having sex with a man in secret. At first she managed to hide her condition; but when Cleanax became aware of it, he was angry about the mishap, and summoning Cretheis in private he held her wholly responsible for everything, emphasising the dishonor it brought among their fellow-citizens. He therefore decided on the following course of action with respect to the girl’s future. At that time the Cymaeans were colonizing the innermost part of the gulf of the Hermus; they founded a city and Theseus gave it the name Smyrna, for he wished to establish a memorial that was named after his wife; for her name was Smyrna. Theseus was among the leaders of the Thessalians who were colonizing Cyme, the offspring of Eumelus son of Admetus, and a very rich man. Cleanax placed Cretheis there along with Ismenias, a Boeotian, who had been chosen by lot as one of the colonists and was a very good friend of his.

3 When some time had passed, as Cretheis was going with other women to a festival at the river called Meles and was now ready to give birth, she bore Homer, who was not blind but could see. And she gave the child the name Melesigenes, taking the name from the river. At this time she was staying with Ismenias. But when some time had passed she went away, and undertaking manual work she supported the child and herself, finding work now with one person, now with another; and she educated the child with such means as she had.

4 At that time there was in Smyrna a man called Phemius, who used to teach boys letters and all the other arts. Since this man was living alone, he hired Cretheis to work some wool for him that he had received from the boys as a payment. She worked at his place, with considerable decorum and self-control, and greatly pleased Phemius. Finally he proposed that she should live with him, employing a number of arguments which, he thought, would win her over, not least concerning her child. For he said that he would adopt him as his own son, and that, after he had supported and educated him, the child would gain renown, for he could see that he was intelligent and very talented. And finally he persuaded her to do as he suggested.

5 The child was naturally gifted, and with care and education he quickly distinguished himself greatly from all others. As time went by and he reached manhood, he was not at all inferior to Phemius in learning. And so when Phemius died, leaving everything to the child, and not long afterwards Chretheis died too, Melesigenes took over as teacher. Now being on his own, he achieved greater prominence amongst men, and both the locals and the visitors from abroad became his admirers. For Smyrna was a trading post and a great deal of grain was exported from there, as it was brought to the city in great quantities from the surrounding land. And so the foreigners, whenever they finished work, would spend their leisure time sitting at the house of Melesigenes.

6 Among them at that time was a shipowner, Mentes, from the area around Leucas, who had sailed down for grain as he had a ship. He was an educated man for that time and very learned, and he persuaded Melesigenes to abandon teaching and set sail with him, in exchange for a salary and all that he might need. He added that it would be worth visiting lands and cities while he was still young. And I think that this argument, in particular, swayed Homer, for already at that time he may have been thinking of applying himself to poetry. So he abandoned his teaching and set sail with Mentes. And whatever place he reached on each occasion, he observed all the peculiarities of the region and gained knowledge through inquiry; it is likely that he also wrote down notes of everything.

7 On the way back from Etruria and Spain, they arrived at Ithaca. And it happened that Melesigenes, who was suffering from an eye disease, was feeling gravely ill and, because he needed care, Mentes, who was about to sail to Leucas, left him with a very good friend of his, Mentor, an Ithacan, the son of Alcimus, and begged him to take care of Homer; he would pick him up on the return voyage. Mentor spared no efforts in tending him, for he had ample resources and by far the best reputation among the Ithacans for righteousness and hospitality. There it happened that Melesigenes researched and learned about the story of Odysseus. The Ithacans say that he went blind then, whilst he was staying with them; but, in my opinion, he recovered on that occasion and went blind later, in Colophon. The Colophonians agree with me on these matters.

8 Mentes, on the return voyage from Leucas, put in at Ithaca and picked up Melesigenes; and for a long time he sailed about with him. But upon arrival at Colophon it happened that his eye disease returned, and this time he was not able to recover but went blind there. From Colophon, being now blind, he went to Smyrna, and in this condition he turned his hand to poetry.

9 When some time had passed, since he had no means of earning a living in Smyrna, he decided to go to Cyme. Travelling across the plain of the Hermus he arrived at Neonteichus, a Cymaean colony; this site was founded eight years after Cyme. There it is said that he stood near a shoemaker’s shop and recited his first verses:

Respect those who need hospitality and shelter, you who dwell in lofty Cyme, the wide-eyed girl, on the lowest foot of Sardene with its lofty foliage, and drink the ambrosial water of the divine river, the eddying Hermus, offspring of immortal Zeus.

Sardene is a mountain situated above the river Hermus and Neonteichos. The name of the shoemaker was Tychius; upon hearing these verses he decided to welcome the man, for he pitied the blind beggar, and he invited him into his workshop and told him to take his share of what was there. So Homer went in. Sitting in the shoemaker’s shop, when other people were also present, he would perform his poetry for them, Amphiaraus’ expedition against Thebes and the hymns that he had composed to the gods, and giving his opinion on matters which were discussed by those present, he seemed remarkable to his listeners.

10 Meanwhile, Melesigenes was staying around Neonteichos, earning his living through his poetry. The inhabitants of Neonteichos still showed in my lifetime the spot where he used to sit and perform his verses, and they had great veneration for the place. A poplar tree was growing there, which they said had grown from the time when Melesigenes came to them.

10 After some time had passed, being impoverished and scarcely having enough to eat, he decided to go to Cyme, hoping to improve his situation. When he was about to set out, he recited these verses:

May my feet carry me forthwith to a city of respectful men; for the spirit of such men is willing and their counsel best.

Travelling from Neonteichos, he arrived at Cyme via Larissa, for that route was easiest for him; and, as the Cymaeans say, he composed this epigram for the king of Phrygia, Midas son of Gordies, at the request of his kinsmen; and it is still now inscribed on the memorial stele:

I am a virgin of bronze, and I lie on the tomb of Midas. As long as water flows, and trees grow high, and the sun rises and shines brightly, and the bright moon, and the rivers flow and the sea swells, staying here on this much lamented tomb I shall announce to passersby that Midas is buried here.

12 Sitting in the salons of the old men in Cyme, Melesigenes performed the verses he had composed, and he delighted his audience with his words; and they became his admirers. Realising that the Cymaeans were receiving his poetry favourably, and that he was winning the friendship of his audience, he made this speech to them, saying that if they were willing to support him at public expense, he would bring great glory to their city. His audience was willing to do this and advised him to approach the council and make a request to the councillors. They said that they would support him. He did as they suggested, and when the council gathered he went to the council room and asked the presiding official to bring him in to the council. He accepted and led him in at the right moment. Taking his stand, Melesigenes made the same speech concerning about his maintenance that he had made in the salons. When he had finished speaking, he went outside and sat down.

13 They deliberated over what answer they should give him. The man who had brought him in was favourably disposed, and so were all of the other councillors who had listened to him in the salons; but it is said that one of the councillors went against his request, saying, among other things, that if they decided to support the homeroi then they woud have a large and useless multitude. From then on, moreover, the name Homer prevailed over Melesigenes because of his disability, for the Cymaeans call the blind homeroi; so that, although he was previously called Melesigenes, his name became Homer.

14 And foreigners spread it about when they mentioned him. But the archon’s speech concluded that they should not support Homer, and the rest of the council was convinced in some way too. The presiding official came and sat beside him, and he explained the arguments that had been made against his request and the deliberations of the council. And when he heard this, Homer was aggrieved and spoke these verses:

What a destiny father Zeus made me prey to, raising me, when I was a child, on the knees of my reverend mother. Once, by the will of aegis-bearing Zeus, the city was fortified by the people of Phrikon, riders of enraged horses, keener than raging fire in deciding the battle, Aeolian Smyrna, the sea’s neighbour, august coast, through which the glistening water of the holy Meles flows. Starting from there the daughters of Zeus, his glorious offspring, wanted to celebrate the divine land and city of men; but they refused the sacred voice, the fame, the song, because of their thoughtlessness. One of them will understand when he suffers, he who decided my destiny with rebukes. I will endure the fate that the god gave me when I was born, bearing defeat with a patient heart, but no longer do my limbs wish to remain in the sacred streets of Cyme: my great heart incites me to go to a foreign people, however small it may be.

15 After this he left Cyme for Phocaea, laying on the Cymaeans a curse that no famous poet should ever be born in their land to bring them glory. Having arrived in Phocaea he adopted the same way of life, performing verses whilst sitting in the salons. There was in Phocaea at that time a certain Thestorides, a disagreeable man, who taught letters to schoolboys. When he learned of Homer’s poetry, he approached him with words to the effect that he was willing to assume responsibility for his care and sustenance, if Homer agreed to ascribe to him whatever verses that he had composed, and, whenever he composed others, always to do so under Thestorides’ name.

16 When Homer heard this he concluded that he would have to comply, for he was in need of basic necessities and care. During his stay with Thestorides he composed the Little Iliad, which begins:

I sing of Ilion and Dardania of fine horses, for which the Danaans, servants of Ares, suffered much,

and the so-called Phocais, which the Phocaeans say Homer composed when he was with them. When Thestorides had transcribed from the mouth of Homer the Phocais and all his other works, he resolved to leave Phocaea, for he wanted to take possession of Homer’s poetry. And he no longer took care of Homer in the same manner as before. So he spoke these verses to him:

Thestorides, although many things are unexpected for mortals, nothing is more incomprehensible than the human mind.

So Thestorides left Phocaea for Chios, where he founded a school; and, reciting the verses as if they were his own, he won much praise and gained profit. Homer, for his part, continued to pursue the same way of life in Phocaea, earning a living through his poetry.

17 After a short time some Chian merchants arrived in Phocaea. Hearing verses from Homer that they had often heard before from Thestorides in Chios, they told Homer that in Chios a certain school teacher was receiving much praise by performing the same verses. Homer realised that this must be Thestorides, and he desired with all his heart to go to Chios. But when he went down to the harbour, he found no ship sailing to Chios; but some men were preparing to sail to Erythrea for wood. Homer was happy to make his voyage via Erythrea, and he approached the sailors and asked them to accept him as a passenger, presenting many appealing arguments that were likely to convince them. They agreed to take him in, and invited him to embark. Homer embarked, praising them generously, and when he sat down he spoke these verses:

Listen, Poseidon, powerful earth-shaker, ruler of sacred Helicon with its broad spaces, grant a favourable wind and a safe return for the sailors, who are escorts and overseers of the ship. Grant that, when I come to the foot of towering Mimas, I may encounter considerate and pious people, and punish the man who cheated me and enraged Zeus of Guests and the guest-table.

18 When they reached Erythraea after a fine trip, Homer bedded down for the night on the ship. The following day he asked to be led by one of the sailors into the town, and they sent one to be his escort. As Homer was walking, because he found the terrain of Erythrea rough and mountainous, he spoke these verses:

Bounteous mistress Earth, giver of sweet wealth, how fertile you are for some mortals, but for others, with whom you are angry, how barren and rough.

Once he had reached the city of the Erythraeans, he asked about the voyage to Chios. When a man who had seen him in Phocaea approached and greeted him, Homer asked for his help in finding a ship, so that he could cross over to Chios.

19 There was no packet boat from the harbour, but he led him to where the fishing boats were moored. And by chance he happened upon some men who were about to sail to Chios; his guide approached them and asked them to take Homer with them. But they took no notice and set sail. So Homer spoke these verses:

Seafaring sailors, who in your wretched fate are like timorous shearwaters, who lead an unpleasant life, respect the sanctity of high-ruling Zeus of Guests; for the retribution of Zeus of Guests is dire for those who cause offence.

After they had set sail, it happened that an unfavourable wind arose, and they were driven back to the place from where they had put out, and there they found Homer still sitting on the shore. When he realised that they had been driven back, he spoke thus:

“An unfavourable wind has arisen and caught you, foreigners; but take me even now, and you will have your voyage”.

The fishermen, regretting that they had not taken him in before, urged him to embark, saying that they would not leave him behind if he wanted to sail with them; and thus taking him in they set sail, and they put in on a beach.

20 Then the fishermen turned to their work; Homer spent the night on the beach, and as he walked and wandered about the following day he came to the place called Pine. And there, while he was resting at night, a fruit of the pine fell upon him (the fruit that some call whorl, others cone). And Homer spoke these verses:

Another pine drops a better fruit than yours on the peaks of windy Ida with its many valleys, where the iron of Ares shall be among mortals who walk the earth, when the Cebrenian men possess it.

The Cymaeans at this time were preparing to occupy Cebrenia near Mount Ida, and much iron is produced there.

21 Homer got up from there and followed the sound of goats being herded. When the dogs barked at him, he cried out; and Glaucus (for this was the name of the goatherd) ran quickly when he heard his voice, and he called the dogs back and scared them away from Homer. For a long time he was astonished at how a blind man had come alone to such places, and for what reason. So he approached Homer and enquired who he was, how he had come to uninhabited places and pathless regions, and what he needed. And Homer, telling him all that had happened to him, moved him to pity; for Glaucus, as it seems, was not hard-hearted. And so, taking Homer with him, Glaucus brought him to his lodging, lit up a fire, and prepared a meal, and placing it in front of him invited him to dine.

22 Since the dogs were not eating and were barking at them while they dined, as they usually did, Homer spoke these verses to Glaucus:

Gentle Glaucus, let me put a thought in your head: first give the dogs their meal at the doors of the courtyard, for that is best: a dog is the first to hear a man approaching or a beast going into the enclosure.

Hearing this, Glaucus was delighted with the advice and was astonished at him. Having eaten, they amused themselves in conversation, and as Homer related his wanderings and the cities he had visited, Glaucus was astounded by what he heard. And when it was time to sleep, he took his rest.

23 On the following day, Glaucus decided to go to his master’s house to inform him about Homer. He entrusted pasturing the goats to his fellow slave and left Homer indoors, telling him that he would come back before long, and going down to Bolissos, which is close to that place, and meeting his master, he reported the whole truth about Homer, making a wonder of his arrival, and asked what should be done with him. But he believed very few details of the story, and denounced Glaucus as a fool for taking in and supporting disabled people; but he asked him to bring the foreigner to him anyway.

24 Going back to Homer, Glaucus reported these things and urged him to make the trip, saying that it would be good for him; and Homer was willing to do so. And so Glaucus took him and led him to his master. As he conversed with Homer, the Chian found that he was clever and experienced in many things. He therefore convinced him to remain there and look after his children, for the Chian had sons of age. So he charged him with the education of his children, and Homer performed this role. And he composed there, at the Chian’s in Bolissos, the Cercopes, the Batrachomyomachia, the Psaromachia, the Heptapaktike, the Epikichlides, and all the other playful poems of Homer; so that he now also became famous in the city thanks to his poetry. And Thestorides, as soon as he became aware that he was there, departed on a ship from Chios.

25 After some time had passed, having asked the Chian to take him to Chios, he arrived at the city; and, founding a school, he taught his verses to children. He was recognised as very clever by the Chians, and many became his admirers. Once he had accumulated sufficient resources, he married a woman, from whom two daughters were born to him; and one of them died unwed, while the other he gave in marriage to a man from Chios.

26 Turning his hand to poetry, he repaid the favours that he had received, first of all to Mentor the Ithacan in the Odyssey, for tending him assiduously in Ithaca when his eyes were sick, by fitting his name into his poetry and saying that he was a friend of Odysseus; and he made Odysseus entrust his household to him when he left for Troy on the grounds that he was the best and most just of the Ithacans. At many other points in his poetry too, to honour him, he made Athena assume the appearance of Mentor when she engaged in conversation with someone. He also repaid his teacher Phemius for his support and education in the Odyssey, and especially in these verses:

And the herald put the beautiful lyre in the hands of Phemius, who far excelled all in singing,

and again:

And taking up the phorminx, he struck up a beautiful song.

He also mentions the shipowner by the name of Mentes, with whom he sailed around and saw many cities and lands, in these verses:

Mentes the son of wise Anchialus I profess to be, and I rule the Taphians fond of the oar.

He also returned the favour of Tychios the shoemaker, who took him in in Neonteichos when he went to his workshop, introducing him in these verses from the Iliad:

And Ajax arrived from nearby bearing a shield like a tower, made of bronze and seven bulls’ hides, which Tychios laboured to fashion for him, far the best of leather-cutters, whose home was in Hyle.

27 Thanks to this poetry Homer was held in high esteem around Ionia, and his fame was already reaching mainland Greece. While living in Chios winning renown for his poetry, since many people were coming to him, those who met him advised him to go to Greece. He welcomed the idea and was very eager to travel.

28 Realizing that he had composed many great eulogies for Argos, but none for Athens, he added to his poem, the Great Iliad, these verses to exalt Erechtheus in the Catalogue of Ships:

The people of greathearted Erechtheus, whom Athena daughter of Zeus once reared and the grain-giving earth bore.

And to praise their commander Menestheus, for being the best of all men at stationing infantry and charioteers, he said in these verses:

The son of Peteos, Menestheus, in turn commanded them. No man on earth has ever been equal to him in arranging horses and shield-bearing men.

And he placed Ajax, son of Telamon, and his Salaminians in the Catalogue of Ships with the Athenians, speaking these verses:

Ajax from Salamis led twelve ships, and he stationed them where the Athenian ranks stood.

And in the Odyssey he added that Athena, having gone to speak to Odysseus, arrived at the city of the Athenians, which she honours more than all other cities:

And she came to Marathon and Athens with its broad places, and entered the well-built house of Erechtheus.

29 Having added these verses to his poetry and made his preparations, wishing to sail to Greece, he put in at Samos. It happened that the local people at that time were celebrating the festival of the Apatouria. And one of the Samians, when he saw that Homer had arrived, for he had seen him before in Chios, went to his clansmen and told them (about Homer), praising him greatly. The clansmen asked him to bring him there; and chancing upon Homer, he said: “Foreigner, as the city is celebrating the Apatouria, our clansmen invite you to celebrate with us”. Homer said he would do so, and went with the man who had invited him.

30 As he was walking he met some women who were offering sacrifices to Kourotrophos at the place where three roads cross; the priestess, annoyed at seeing him, said: “Man, go away from the sacrifice”. Homer took this utterance to heart, and he asked his guide who it was that had spoken, and to what god the sacrifice was being offered; he explained that it was a woman, sacrificing to Kourotrophos. And upon hearing this he said the following verses:

Hear me as I pray, Kourotrophos, and grant that this woman reject the love and bed of young men, but let her delight in old men with hoary temples, whose strength is blunted, though their desire is still keen.

31 When he came to the clan gathering and stood on the threshold of the building where they were feasting, there was, some say, a fire burning in the building, but others say that they lit it after Homer spoke these verses:

Sons are crown for a man, walls for a city; horses are the ornament on a plain, ships of the sea, and wealth enhances the house; and honourable kings sitting in the assembly are a beautiful sight to others. And when a fire is burning the house looks more honourable.

Having entered and reclined, he feasted with the clansmen; and they honoured and admired him. And then Homer slept there.

32 On the following day, as he was going away, some potters who were firing a kiln full of fragile pottery saw him, called him over, as they had learned that he was wise, and asked him to sing for them, saying that they would give him some of their pottery and anything else they had. Homer sang these verses for them, which are called The Kiln:

If you are going to give me a reward I will sing, o potters; come then, Athena, hold your hand over the kiln, may the cups and all the dishes turn a fine black, and be well baked and obtain the price that they are worth, with many sold in the agora, many in the streets, and bring in great profit, and provide for us as much as for them. But if, turning to impudence, you begin to tell lies, then I will summon those destroyers of the kiln, Crush and Shatter, Blister and Shaker, and Underbake, who does much damage to this art †…† the furnace and the rooms, and may the whole kiln be in disorder, while the potters wail loudly. As a horse’s jaw champs the bit, so may the kiln champ, making sherds of all the pottery within. And may you come, as well, Circe, daughter of the Sun, you who know many charms; mix your wild drugs, ruin them and their works; and may Chiron, too, bring many Centaurs here, those who escaped the hands of Heracles and those who died. May they kick these pots to pieces, may the kiln fall apart, and may the potters lament when they see these destructive deeds; I will rejoice as I watch the downfall of their art. And he who puts his head over the top, may his whole face be burned, so that all may learn how to behave appropriately.

33 He spent the winter in Samos, and going to the most prosperous houses during the new moon he made some money by singing these verses, which are called Eiresione; some of the local boys always guided and attended him:

We approached the house of a highly influential man, who has great power and raises a great clamour, always blessed. Open by yourselves, doors: for Wealth will come in abundance, and with Wealth also flourishing Cheer and good Peace. May all the grain jars then be full, and may the barley cake always inch down from the kneading trough. Your son’s bride will come to you in a seat, sturdy-footed mules will bring her to your house, and may she weave at her loom as she treads a floor of amber. I will return, I will return every year like the swallow. I stand at the doorway

and

…if you are going to give something; if not, we will not stay here, for we have not come here to live with you.

These verses were sung in Samos for a long time by the children when they collected money during the festival of Apollo.

34 At the beginning of spring Homer undertook a voyage to Athens from Samos. And sailing out with some local people, he was carried off course to Ios. They did not moor at the town, but on the shore. It happened that Homer began to feel rather ill; having disembarked, he lay down on the shore, feeling weak. For many days they stayed at anchor because of adverse weather, and people were continuously coming down from the town and spending time with Homer, and they admired him as they listened to him.

35 While the sailors and some people from the town were sitting with Homer, some young fishermen came ashore at that place, and alighting from the boat they approached them and said: “Come now, foreigners, listen to us, to see if you are able to understand what we say.” And one of those present urged them to speak, so they said: “We left behind what we caught, and what we did not catch we carry with us.” Some say that they spoke in metre:

All we caught we left behind, what we did not catch we carry with us.

Since those present were not able to understand what they had said, the boys explained that while they were fishing they were not able to catch anything, but then, sitting on the land, they deloused themselves, and the lice that they had caught, they left behind, while those that they were not able to catch, they were bringing home. Homer, hearing this, said these verses:

From the blood of such fathers you were born, who neither possessed rich lands nor grazed countless herds.

36 As a result of this illness it happened that Homer died in Ios, not from his failure to understand what the boys had said, as some think, but because of his weakness. After his death, he was buried in Ios, on the shore there, by his fellow sailors and those people of the town who had conversed with him. And long afterwards, the people of Ios inscribed the following elegy, when his poetry had become famous and was admired by everyone; it is not by Homer:

Here the earth covers the sacred head, adorner of warrior heroes, divine Homer.

37 That Homer was an Aeolian, and not an Ionian or a Dorian, I have shown in what I have related above, and he too makes this inference possible on the basis of the following facts: it is likely that a poet of Homer’s calibre, when he describes the customs of men, will either seek out the finest ones and incorporate them into his poems or he will describe his own native customs. You will therefore now judge for yourselves as you listen to the following verses. For in the case of sacrifice, he either sought out and described the best kind, or the one belonging to his fatherland. For he says:

First they pulled back the heads and slaughtered and flayed them. They cut out the thighbones and covered them in fat, making a double fold, and placed pieces of raw meat upon them.

In these verses nothing is said about the use of the loin in sacrifice; for, of all the Greeks, only the Aeolians do not burn the loin. He also shows in the following verses that, being an Aeolian, he correctly followed their customs:

The old man burned them on splinters and poured on the sparkling wine; beside him the young men held five-pronged forks in their hands.

For only the Aeolians roast the entrails on five prongs, all the other Greeks on three; and the Aeolian word for pente (five) is pempe.

38 So I have set out the details of his origins, death and life. As for Homer’s time, one may calculate it precisely and correctly by taking into account the following. From the time of the expedition to Troy, which Agamemnon and Menelaus organized, it was one hundred and thirty years until Lesbos was colonised by cities (formerly it had no cities). Aeolian Cyme, also called Phrikonian Cyme, was founded twenty years after the colonisation of Lesbos. Smyrna was founded by the Cymaeans eighteen years after Cyme; and Homer was born at that time. From Homer’s birth there are six hundred and twenty two years until Xerxes’ crossing from Asia to Europe, which he accomplished by bridging the Hellespont during his expedition against the Greeks. From that moment it is possible for anyone who wishes to establish the chronology easily on the basis of the archon list at Athens. Homer was born one hundred and sixty eight years after the Trojan War.


Relevant guides Homer