Plutarch, Banquet of the Seven Sages 162c

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

ὁ δε Σόλων ὑπολαβών “ἀλλὰ ταῦτα μὲν, ὦ Διόκλεις, ἐγγὺς θεῶν ἔστω καὶ ὑπὲρ ἡμᾶς· ἀνθρώπινον δὲ καὶ πρὸς ἡμᾶς τὸ τοῦ Ἡσιόδου πάθος· ἀκήκοας γὰρ ἴσως τὸν λόγον.” “οὐκ ἔγωγ’” εἶπον εἶπον Reiske: εἶπεν M. “ἀλλὰ μὴν ἄξιον πυθέσθαι. Μιλησίου γάρ, ὡς ἔοικεν, ἀνδρός, ὧι ξενίας ἐκοινώνει ὁ Ἡσίοδος καὶ διαίτης ἐν Λοκροῖς, τῆι τοῦ ξένου θυγατρὶ κρύφα συγγενομένου καὶ φωραθέντος ὑποψίαν ἔσχεν ὡς γνοὺς ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς καὶ συνεπικρύψας τὸ ἀδίκημα, μηδενὸς ὢν αἴτιος, ὀργῆς δὲ καιρῶι καὶ διαβολῆς διαβολῆς m: διαβολῆι m περιπεσὼν ἀδίκως. ἀπέκτειναν γὰρ αὐτὸν οἱ τῆς παιδίσκης ἀδελφοὶ περὶ τὸ Λοκρικὸν Νέμειον ἐνεδρεύσαντες, καὶ μετ’ αὐτοῦ τὸν ἀκόλουθον, ὧι Τρωίλος ἦν ὄνομα.

τῶν δὲ σωμάτων εἰς τὴν θάλατταν ὠσθέντων τὸ μὲν τοῦ Τρωίλου, εἰς τὸν Δάφνον ποταμὸν ἔξω φορούμενον, ἐπεσχέθη περικλύστωι χοιράδι μικρὸν ὑπὲρ τὴν θάλατταν ἀνεχούσηι ἀνεχούσηι Turnèbe: ἀπεχούσηι M· καὶ μέχρι νῦν Τρωίλος ἡ χοιρὰς καλεῖται· τοῦ δ’ Ἡσιόδου τὸν νεκρὸν εὐθὺς ἀπὸ γῆς ὑπολαβοῦσα δελφίνων ἀγέλη πρὸς τὸ Ῥίον ἐκόμιζε κατὰ κατὰ Palmer: καὶ M τὴν Μολύκρειαν Μολύκρειαν Defradas: μολυκρείων m Μολύκριαν m. ἐτύγχανε δὲ Λοκροῖς ἡ τῶν Ῥίων καθεστῶσα θυσία καὶ πανήγυρις, ἣν ἄγουσιν ἔτι νῦν περιφανῶς περὶ τὸν τόπον ἐκεῖνον. ὡς δ’ ὤφθη προσφερόμενον τὸ σῶμα, θαυμάσαντες, ὡς εἰκὸς, ἐπὶ τὴν ἀκτὴν κατέδραμον, καὶ γνωρίσαντες ἔτι πρόσφατον τὸν νεκρὸν ἅπαντα δεύτερα τοῦ ζητεῖν τὸν φόνον ἐποιοῦντο διὰ τὴν δόξαν τοῦ Ἡσιόδου. καὶ τοῦτο μὲν ταχέως ἔπραξαν, εὑρόντες τοὺς φονεῖς· αὐτούς τε γὰρ κατεπόντισαν ζῶντας καὶ τὴν οἰκίαν κατέσκαψαν. ἐτάφη δ’ ὁ Ἡσίοδος πρὸς τῶι Νεμείωι· τὸν δὲ τάφον οἱ πολλοὶ τῶν ξένων οὐκ ἴσασιν, ἀλλ’ ἀποκέκρυπται ζητούμενος ὑπ’ Ὀρχομενίων, ὥς φασι, βουλομένων κατὰ χρησμὸν ἀνελέσθαι τὰ λείψανα καὶ θάψαι παρ’ αὑτοῖς.”

In reply, Solon said, ‘Let these things be close to the gods and beyond us. But what Hesiod experienced was human and relevant to us. For perhaps you have heard the tale’.

‘No, I have not,’ I said.

‘But it is worth hearing. For a Milesian man, as it seems, with whom Hesiod was a fellow-guest and lodger in Locris, had secretly slept with the host’s daughter and, when he was found out, Hesiod came under suspicion of having known about and concealed the crime from the beginning, although he wasn’t guilty of anything but unjustly bore the brunt of the anger and slander. For the brothers of the girl killed both him and his attendant, whose name was Troilus, having ambushed them near the Locrian shrine of Nemean Zeus.

‘Their bodies were thrown into the sea and that of Troilus, being carried out by the river Daphnus, was caught on a rock which jutted out a little above the water and was surrounded by strong tides. To this day the rock is called Troilus. As for Hesiod’s body, a pod of dolphins picked it up just off land and conveyed it to Rhion in Molycreia. But it happened that the customary Rhian sacrifice and festival was taking place in Locris, which, even now, they celebrate conspicuously in that place. When they saw the body being brought in, naturally amazed, they ran to the shore and recognizing the corpse, which was still fresh, they made tracking down the murderer their absolute priority, because of Hesiod’s fame. They accomplished this quickly and found the murderers, whom they plunged into the sea alive, razing their home to the ground. Hesiod was buried by the shrine of Nemean Zeus. Most foreigners do not know about the grave, but it was kept hidden when the Orchomenians were searching for it, they say, since they wanted to recover the remains and bury them in their own city in accordance with an oracle.’

Relevant guides Hesiod