Friday, 22 December 2017

Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Talking about love and beauty, we have another poem by Sappho, and this time there are as many as 6 (!) versions of it I have translated, and none of these took P.GC. into account, meaning we have 7 of them. The sources are P.Oxy. 1231 fr. 1 col. i and one line in col ii, a quotation by Apollonius Dyscolus's treatise on pronouns giving half of l. 3 and all l. 4, P.Oxy. 1231 fr. 36 (added by the Lobel-Page edition "quamvis dubitanter", "though doubtingly"), P.Oxy. 2166(a) frr. 2a and 2b, and P.GC. fr. 2a coll. i-ii and fr. 2b col. i. The multiple versions depend on doubtful readings and lacunas. When I tackled this back in the day, I had no idea what to choose, so I translated two versions (1 from Greek wikisource and 3 with 2.5 stanzas from P.Oxy. and the rest from GW, plus that version's last stanza completed by me), then I bumped into "The Complete Poems of Sappho" by Sean B. Palmer and found more convincing completions somewhere so I changed the text and retranslated, and that gave versions 2&4 where in 4 I adopted a revised version of English Wikisource's completion of the last stanza), then from that site I found safopoemas.doc and stanza 4 was completed differently and IMO better, so I retranslated that, producing version 5, and version 6 was a blend of translations for Latin and English, and required a quick fix for Italian, which was done around 18:53:30 on Dec 22, 2017, whereas all other translations date back to those days and are not precisely datable. Version 7, which is in the critical note as well with an English prose translation (after adding a lot of stuff around the original spoiler hiding extracts of the Paracritical Note I wrote back then), takes P.GC. and all that is written at the transcriptions post into account, and was translated on March 19 2018 by mostly recycling old translations and fixing what couldn't be recycled in two lots, one between 13:49 and 14:13, and on between 15:24 and 15:58, with stanza 6 of the English version being from 14:42. P.GC. questions whether this is a single poem or two, since it makes the poem longer than any other known poem in Sapphic stanzas by Sappho. There was already a conjecture that the last stanza in some versions belonged in another poem back in the day, which is probably why Greek Wikisource (GW in the version source explanations) doesn't have it. Now it is almost certain, since the ordering was by first letter of incipit so this other poem needs to begin with O- and it so happens that an O-word fits a lacuna in that stanza perfectly, and no other stanzas we have parts of have such lacunas at their beginnings. This is clearly to the detriment of Edmonds, who ends his fragment 38 with the last completable stanza and keeps his fragment 39 for that isolated last line. The title is actually Edmonds' reconstruction of an indirect quotation where some Greek author says Sappho called Love "son of Heaven and Earth", and Edmonds reconstructed a Sapphic hendecasyllabic line which then was adopted by Greek Wikisource as the title for this poem and came to me in such a disguise, and by the time I found out its true origins I had already finished the translations and was probably already working at the blog. That being said, the meters of the translations are the usual (imitations of) Sapphic stanzas, and let's get to the poem! Note that a line has been omitted at the end to avoid a huge gap, it reads τ' ἐξ ἀδοκή[τω, and I translated it as Ex improviso (couldn't make it metrical), Dal non previsto, From unforeseen.



Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οἰ δὲ νάων φαῖσ’ ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[ Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον, ἔγω δὲ κῆν’ ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται·

[Πά]γχυ δ’ εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]άντι τ[ο]ῦτ’· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέθοισα
Κάλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
τὸν [πανάρ]ιστον

Καλλ[ίποι]σ’ ἔβα͜ ἐς Τροΐαν πλέοι[σα]
Κωὐδ[ὲ πα]ῖδος οὐδὲ φίλων το[κ]ήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθη, ͜ ἀλλὰ παράγαγ’ αὔταν
[τὰν ἀέκοι]σαν

[Κύπρις· εὔκ]αμπτον γὰρ [ἀεὶ τὸ θῆλυ
Αἴ κέ τις] κούφως τ[ὸ πάρον ν]όησῃ·
[Κἄ]με νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νέμναι-
[σ’ οὐ] παρεοίσας,

[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρατόν τε βᾶμα
Κἀμάρυχμα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ τὰ Λύδων ἄρματα καὶ πανόπλοις
[πεσδομ]άχεντας.


Prole più͜ amata di terra͜ e di cielo

Folla di fanti͜ o cavalier' si dice
O d’ navi sul[la] terra vincitrice
Di gara di beltade; io invece
Ch’è ciò ch’è͜ amato;

Per [t]utti s’è [b]en facil capir c[i]ò,
Ch’Elena, sorpassando d’un bel po’
Beltade d’[u]om per chi la generò,
[Q]uell’uom la[sci]ato

Miglior [d’ognun], ver’ Troia navi[gò],
E figlia͜ e ge[ni]tor’ non ricordò,
Ma vi͜a guidata lungi se n’andò,
[Seppur forza]ta,

[Da Vener: sempre fa]cil da piegare
[È donna, del presente͜ a] meditare
S’è li͜eve; Anattorï[a]͜ a [ri]cordar[e]
Son or portata:

L’amato passo [s]u͜o preferireï
Veder, e lo splendor sul viso͜ a leï,
Che carri Lidi,͜ e ’n armi͜ e ne’ clipèï
Lidi pugnare.
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

[Q]uīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm [ē]ssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭp[ēr] pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ h[ō]c [vē]rē făcĭlēst [c]ŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmque īps’ [hŏ]mĭn’ ēxquĕ cēllēns
Mūltă pūlchrīs īll’ Hĕlĕn’, ābrĕ[līnq]uēns
[Ōp]tŭmŭm [ōmni͞um]

I͞it vĭr’ ūrb’ ăd Īlĭŭm ū[să] nāvĕ,
[Fī]lĭǣ cārû̄mquĕ sŭūm pă[rē]ntŭm
Tō[tŭm] ōblītāst, ăt ĕ’ īllă [nōlēn]t’
Īd sĭbĭ dūxĭt

[Cȳprĭ’]: nāmquĕ [fēmĭnă sēmpĕr] īnflēct’
Ēst [lĕvīs, s’ ādsēntĭă cōgĭtēt] pa͞ul’;
[Ātquĕ] nūnc Ānāctŏrĭ[ǣ ă]dīvĭt
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o:

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm [īll]i͞us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳd’ ĕt ĭn ārmŭm ōmnī
Quī [hŭmĭ p]ūgnānt.


Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Ove[r] bla[c]k earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
You’ll hold the best;

It’s easy t’ make t[h]is understood understood to [a]ll,
For Helen, who by far surpassed withal
The [hu]man beauty, l[e]ft [th]at man [of all]
By far the best,

And off she went to Troy by ship o’er sea,
Her parents nor her daughter, [none] did she
Remember, but was led away o’er sea,
[Though for]ced, afar,

[By th’ Cyprus-born: thus always easilỳ
Woman] is bent, [if of what is] lightlỳ
[She thinks]; of Anactori[a m]emor[ỳ]
Who is afar,

I’ve now, [wh]ose lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chari͜ots and soldi͜èrs
Fighting full-armed.

Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οἰ δὲ νάων φαῖσ’ ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[ Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον, ἔγω δὲ κῆν’ ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται·

[Πά]γχυ δ’ εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]άντι τ[ο]ῦτ’· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέθοισα
Κάλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
τὸν [πανάρ]ιστον

Καλλ[ίποι]σ’ ἔβα͜ ἐς Τροΐαν πλέοι[σα]
Κωὐδ[ὲ πα]ῖδος οὐδὲ φίλων το[κ]ήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθη, ͜ ἀλλὰ παράγαγ’ αὔταν
[Οὐκ ἀέκοι]σαν

[Κύπρις· εὔκ]αμπτον γὰρ [ἔφυ βρότων κῆρ
Αἴ κέ τις] κούφως τ[ὸ πάρον ν]όησῃ·
[Κἄ]με νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νέμναι-
[σ’ οὐ] παρεοίσας,

[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρατόν τε βᾶμα
Κἀμάρυχμα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ τὰ Λύδων ἄρματα καὶ πανόπλοις
[πεσδομ]άχεντας.


Prole più͜ amata di terra͜ e di cielo

Folla di fanti͜ o cavalier' si dice
O d’ navi sul[la] terra vincitrice
Di gara di beltade; io invece
Ch’è ciò ch’è͜ amato;

Per [t]utti s’è [b]en facil capir c[i]ò,
Ch’Elena, sorpassando d’un bel po’
Beltade d’[u]om per chi la generò,
[Q]uell’uom la[sci]ato

Miglior [d’ognun], ver’ Troia navi[gò],
E figlia͜ e ge[ni]tor’ non ricordò,
Ma vi͜a guidata lungi se n’andò,
[Nemmen forza]ta,

[Da Venere: mortale] da piegare
[È fa]cil, [del presente͜ a] meditare
S’è li͜eve; Anattorï[a]͜ a [ri]cordar[e]
Son or portata:

L’amato passo [s]u͜o preferireï
Veder, e lo splendor sul viso͜ a leï,
Che carri Lidi,͜ e ’n armi͜ e ne’ clipèï
Lidi pugnare.
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

[Q]uīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm [ē]ssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭp[ēr] pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ h[ō]c [vē]rē făcĭlēst [c]ŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmque īps’ [hŏ]mĭn’ ēxquĕ cēllēns
Mūltă pūlchrīs īll’ Hĕlĕn’, ābrĕ[līnq]uēns
[Ōp]tŭmŭm [ōmni͞um]

I͞it vĭr’ ūrb’ ăd Īlĭŭm ū[să] nāvĕ,
[Fī]lĭǣ cārû̄mquĕ sŭūm pă[rē]ntŭm
Tō[tŭm] ōblītāst, ăt ĕ’ [ha͞udquĕ nōlēn]t’
Īd sĭbĭ dūxĭt

[Cȳprĭ’: mōrtālīs] ĕtĕnīmquĕ īnflēct’
[Ēst lĕvīs, s’ ādsēntĭă] cōgĭtēt pa͞ul’;
[Ātquĕ] nūnc Ānāctŏrĭ[ǣ ă]dīvĭt
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o:

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm [īll]i͞us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳd’ ĕt ĭn ārmŭm ōmnī
Quī [hŭmĭ p]ūgnānt.


Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Ove[r] bla[c]k earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
You’ll hold the best;

It’s easy t’ make t[h]is understood understood to [a]ll,
For Helen, who by far surpassed withal
The [hu]man beauty, l[e]ft [th]at man [of all]
By far the best,

And off she went to Troy by ship o’er sea,
Her parents nor her daughter, [none] did she
Remember, but was led away o’er sea,
[Not for]ced, afar,

[By th’ Cyprus-born: thus always easilỳ
Mortals] are bent, [if of what is] lightlỳ
[They think]; of Anactori[a m]emor[ỳ]
Who is afar,

I’ve now, [wh]ose lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chari͜ots and soldi͜èrs
Fighting full-armed.

Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οἰ δὲ νάων φαῖσ’ ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[ Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον, ἔγω δὲ κῆν’ ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται·

[Πά]γχυ δ’ εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]άντι τ[ο]ῦτ’· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκόπει[σ]α
[Κάλ]λος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
[κρίννεν ἄρ]ιστον

[ Ὂς τὸ πᾶν] σέβας Τροΐα[ς ὄ]λεσσ[εν],
[Κωὐδὲ π]αῖδος οὐδὲ φ[ί]λων το[κ]ήων
[Πάμπαν] ἐμνάσθη, ͜ ἀ[λλὰ] παράγαγ’ αὔταν
[πῆλε φίλει]σαν

[Κύπρις· εὔκ]αμπτον γὰρ [ἀεὶ τὸ θῆλυ
Αἴ κέ τις] κούφως τ[ὸ πάρον ν]οήσῃ·
[Τῆ]λε νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νέμνα[σ-
θ]η‹ν› ἀπεοίσας,

[Τᾶ]ς κε βολλοίμαν ἔρατόν τε βᾶμα
Κἀμάρυ‹γ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ τὰ Λύδων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι‹ν›
[πεσδο]μάχεντας.

[Εὖ μὲν ἴδ]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[Λῷστ]ά ‹γ›' ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ’ ἄρασθαι.
[Τῶν δ’ ἔνευξις ἐστι βρότοισι λῷον
ἢ λελάθεσθαι.]

Prole più amata di terra e di cielo

Folla di fanti͜ o cavalier' si dice
O d’ navi sul[la] terra vincitrice
Di gara di beltade; io invece
Ch’è ciò ch’è͜ amato;

[Be]n facile s’è c[i]ò compreso fare
A͜ [og]nun, ch’Elena, che pot[e]͜a mirare
Assa͜i d’[uo]mo [bel]tade,͜ [ot]timo, pare,
[Ha giudicato

Chi͜ in tutto]͜ onor di Troi[a c]ancell[ò],
E [f]iglia͜ e g[e]nitor’ non ricordò,
M[a] vi͜a guidata [lungi] se n’andò,
[Innamora]ta,

[Da Vener: sempre facil] da piegare
[È donna, del presente]͜ a meditare
S’è lieve;͜ Anattorï[a]͜ a [r]icorda[re]
Son or portata:

L’amato passo [su]͜o preferirèï
Veder, e lo splendor sul viso͜ a lèï,
Che carri Lidi,͜ e Lidi ne’ clipèï
Forte pugnare.

Le miglior’ cose͜ un uo[mo] sol pregare
D’[a]vere può, ma ma͜i con man toccare;
[Lor pe͜i mortali͜ è meglio disïare
Che non scordare.]
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

[Q]uīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm [ē]ssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭp[ēr] pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ h[ō]c [vē]rē făcĭlēst [c]ŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmqu’ īll’ īps’ Ĕlĕn’ ēt vĭdē[ns] sī
Mūltŭm ēx [pūl]chrīs [hŏm]ĭnūm, vĭr ōmnĭ’
[Ōp]tŭm’ [hăbu͞it quī

D]īrŭīt [tōtūm] Trŏĭ[ǣ] hŏnōrĕm,
Fīlĭǣ c[ā]rû̄mquĕ sŭūm pă[rē]ntŭm
[Tōtŭm] ōblītāst, ă[t] ĕ’ īllă [lōng’] āb-
dūxĭt [ămō]rĕ

[Cȳprĭ’]: nāmquĕ [fēmĭnă sēmpĕr] īnflēct’
Ēst [lĕvīs, s’ ādsēntĭă cōgĭtēt] pa͞ul’;
Ātquĕ nūnc Ānāctŏrĭ[ǣ ă]dīvĭ[t]
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o:

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm īlli͞us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳdŭm ĕt īntŭ’ scūtīs
Quī hŭmĭ pūgnānt.

[Scī]mŭs [ōptŭm’] ha͞ud pŏtĭs [ōptŭm]ā’ssĕ
Fīĕrī vĭr[īs], prĕc’ [h]ăbēndû̆m a͞utĕm.
[Sēd mĕli͞us mōrtālĭbŭs īllă vēllĕ
Qu’ ha͞ud mĕmĭnīssĕ.]

Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Ove[r] bla[c]k earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
The most are liked;

It’s easy t’ make t[h]is understood to [a]ll,
For Helen, who cou[l]d see a lot of all
The [hum]an [be]auty, [judged the b]est of all
[Th]e man she liked,

[Who] brought Tro[y’s] honour [do]wnwa[rd totally],
Her pa[r]ents nor her [d]aughter, [none] did she
Remember, b[ut] was led away o’er sea,
[In lo]ve, [afar,

By th’ Cyprus-born: thus always easilỳ
Woman] is bent, [if of what is] lightlỳ
She thinks; of Anactori[a m]emor[ỳ]
Who is afar,

I’ve now, [wh]ose lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chari͜ots and soldi͜èrs
With shields in fight.

[Well do we k]now [the be]st can never be
To ma[n], who but his prayers for it can see.
[Of it for mortals better’s memorỳ
Than ’ts absence might.].

Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οἰ δὲ νάων φαῖσ’ ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον, ἔγω δὲ κῆν’ ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται·

[Πά]γχυ δ’ εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]άντι τ[ο]ῦτ’· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκόπει[σ]α
[Κάλ]λος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
[κρίννεν ἄρ]ιστον

[Ὃς τὸ πᾶν] σέβας Τροΐα[ς ὄ]λεσσ‹εν›,
[Κωὐδὲ π]αῖδος οὐδὲ φ[ί]λων το[κ]ήων
[Πάμπαν] ἐμνάσθη, ͜ ἀ‹λλὰ› παράγαγ’ αὔταν
[πῆλε φίλει]σαν

[Κύπρις· εὔκ]αμπτον γὰρ [ἔφυ βρότων κῆρ
Αἴ κέ τις] κούφως τ[ὸ πάρον ν]οήσῃ·
[Τῆ]λε νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νέμνα‹σ›-
θ]η‹ν› ἀπεοίσας,

[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρατόν τε βᾶμα
Κἀμάρυ‹γ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ τὰ Λύδων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[πεσδο]μάχεντας.

[Εὖ μὲν ἴδ]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[Λῷστ]ά ‹γ›' ἀνθρώπ[οισ', π]εδέχην δ’ ἄρασθαι.
[Τῶν πέδηχον ἐστι βρότοισι λῷον
ἢ λελάθεσθαι.]


Prole più amata di Terra e di Cielo

Folla di fanti o cavalier' si dice
O d’ navi sulla terra vincitrice
Di gara di beltade; io invece
Ch’è ciò ch’è amato;

Ben facile s’è ciò compreso fare
A ognun, ch’Elena, che potea mirare
Assai d’uomo beltade, ottimo, pare,
Ha giudicato

Chi in tutto onor di Troia cancellò,
E bimba e genitor’ non ricordò,
Ma via guidata lungi se ne andò,
Innamorata,

Da Vener: sempre facil da piegare
Mortal s’è, del presente a meditare
S’è lieve; Anattoria a ricordare
Son or portata:

L’amato passo suo preferirei
Veder, e lo splendor sul viso a lei,
Che carri Lidi, e Lidi ne’ clipei
Forte pugnare.

S’anche sappiamo ch’uomo mai toccare
Il mèi non può, voler partecipare;
{Di ciò ch’un tempo aveva, è per mortale
Mèi che scordare.}
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

Quīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm ēssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭpēr pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ hōc vērē făcĭlēst cŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmqu’ īll’ īps’ Ĕlĕn’ ēt vĭdēns sī
Mūltŭm ēx pūlchrīs hŏmĭnūm, vĭr ōmnĭ’
Ōptŭm’ hăbu͞it quī

Dīrŭīt tōtūm Trŏĭǣ hŏnōrĕm,
Fīlĭǣ cārû̄mquĕ sŭūm părēntŭm
Tōtŭm ōblītāst, ăt ĕ’ īllă lōng’ āb-
Dūxĭt ămōrĕ

Cȳprĭ’: mōrtālīs ĕtĕnīmquĕ īnflēct’
Ēst lĕvīs, s’ ādsēntĭă cōgĭtēt pa͞ul’;
Ātquĕ nūnc Ānāctŏrĭǣ ădīvĭt
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o:

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm īlli͞us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳdŭm ĕt īntŭ’ scūtīs
Quī hŭmĭ pūgnānt.

Scīmŭs ētsī ha͞ud pŏtĭs ōptŭmā’ssĕ
Fīĕrī vĭrīs, ăt hăbēndû̆m īllû̆m
Ēst mĕli͞us mōrtālĭbŭ’ prēx qu’ hăbēbānt
Qu’ ha͞ud mĕmĭnīssĕ.


Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Over black earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
The most are liked;

It’s easy t’ make this understood to all,
For Helen, who could see a lot of all
The human beauty, judged the best of all
The man she liked,

Who brought Troy’s honour downward totally,
Her parents nor her daughter, none did she
Remember, but was led away o’er sea,
In love, afar,

By th’ Cyprus-born: thus always easily
Mortal heart’s bent, if of what is lightly
It thinks; of Anactoria memory
Who is afar,

I’ve now, whose lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chariots and soldiers
With shields in fight.

Although we know the best can never be
To man, for mortals better’s certainly
{Prayer1 of what they once had and memory
Than ’ts absence might.}.

Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οἰ δὲ νάων φαῖσ’ ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[ Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον, ἔγω δὲ κῆν’ ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται·

[Πά]γχυ δ’ εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]άντι τ[ο]ῦτ’· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέθοισα
Κάλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
τὸν [πανάρ]ιστον

Καλλ[ίποι]σ’ ἔβα͜ ἐς Τροΐαν πλέοι[σα]
Κωὐδ[ὲ πα]ῖδος οὐδὲ φίλων το[κ]ήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθη, ͜ ἀλλὰ παράγαγ’ αὔταν
[πῆλε φίλει]σαν

[Κύπρις· εὔκ]αμπτον γὰρ [ὐπάγαγ’ ἆ͂τορ
Αἴ κεν οὐ] κούφως τ[ιν’ ἔραν π]oήσῃ·
[ Ὤς] με νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νέμναι-
σ’ οὐ παρεοίσας·

[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρατόν τε βᾶμα
Κἀμάρυχμα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ τὰ Λύδων ἄρματα καὶ πανόπλοις
[πεσδομ]άχεντας.

[Εὖ μὲν ἴδ]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[Λῷστ’] ὂ̣ν ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ’ ἄρασθαι
[Τῶν πέδηχον ἐστι βρότοισι λῷον
ἢ λελάθεσθαι.]


Prole più amata di Terra e di Cielo

Ciò che sull[a] terra ne[r]a͜ è più bello
Dicesi͜ un plotone di fanti,͜ o ’n quello
Cavali͜eri, o flotta di navi;͜ è quello –
Dico – ch’è͜ amato.

Facil s’è ciò͜ a [t]utti compreso fare,
Ch’Elena, avendo͜ anche͜ a superare
La beltà degl’[uo]mini assa͜i, per ma[re],
[Qu]ell’uom lasc[iat]o

[Di ciascun m]igliore, ver’ Troia͜ andò,
[Fi]glia͜ e ge[n]itori non ricordò
Proprio͜ af[fatto], ma [lungi] la guidò,
[Innamorata,

La Ciprigna: do]cile [piega ’l cuore
Se] qu[alcun co]nduce ͜[a non] lieve ͜[amore;
Sì] Anattorḯ[a h]o ora in cuore,
Ch'è lungi andata:

Il [s]u’͜ amato passo preferireï
E ’l splendor vedere sul viso a leï
Che de’ Lidi͜ i carri, e ne͜i clipèï
[Fanti] pugnare.

[Ben sap]pi͜am che [’l meglio] non può͜ accadere
A͜i morta[li;] priego però d’ [a]vere
[Ciò che prima͜ ave͜an lor è meglio͜ avere
Ch’esso scordare.]
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

[Q]uīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm [ē]ssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭp[ēr] pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ h[ō]c [vē]rē făcĭlēst [c]ŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmque īps’ [hŏ]mĭn’ ēxquĕ cēllēns
Mūltă pūlchrīs īll’ Hĕlĕn’, ābrĕ[līnq]uēns
[Ōp]tŭmŭm [ōmni͞um]

I͞it vĭr’ ūrb’ ăd Īlĭŭm ū[să] nāvĕ,
[Fī]lĭǣ cārû̄mquĕ sŭūm pă[rē]ntŭm
Tō[tŭm] ōblītāst, ăt ĕ’ īllă lōng’ āb-
dūxĭt [ămō]rĕ

[Cȳprĭ’:] nām [cōr sūb] dŏcĭl’ [īllă dūcĭt
Ē]ffĭcīt [s’ ŭt ha͞ud] lĕv’ [ămēt lŭbēt quĭs;
Sīccĕ] nūnc Ănāctŏr[ǣ ă]dīvĭt
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o;

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm [īll]i͞us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳd’ ĕt ĭn ārmŭm ōmnī
Quī [hŭmĭ p]ūgnānt.

[Scī]mŭs [ōptŭm’] ha͞ud pŏtĭs [ōptŭmā’]ssĕ
Fīĕrī vĭr[īs], ăt [h]ăbēndû̆m īllû̆m
[Ēst mĕli͞us mōrtālĭbŭ’ prēx qu’ hăbēbānt
Qu’ ha͞ud mĕmĭnīssĕ.]


Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Ove[r] bla[c]k earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
You’ll hold the best;

It’s easy t’ make t[h]is understood understood to [a]ll,
For Helen, who by far surpassed withal
The [hu]man beauty, l[e]ft [th]at man [of all]
By far the best,

And off she went to Troy by ship o’er sea,
Her parents nor her daughter, [none] did she
Remember, but was led away o’er sea,
[In lo]ve, afar,

[By th’ Cyprus-Goddess:] for [heart] easilỳ
[She bends, if f]orce [it to love] not [lightlỳ]
She does; [of] Anactoria [m]emorỳ,
Who is afar,

I’ve now, [wh]ose lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chari͜ots and soldi͜èrs
With shields in fight.

[Well do we kn]ow [the best] can never be
To m[an], for mortals [betterʼs] certainlỳ
[P]ra͞y͞er [of what they once had and memorỳ
Than ’ts absence might.]

Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οἰ δὲ νάων φαῖσ’ ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι‹ν›αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον, ἔγω δὲ κῆν’ ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται·

[Πά]γχυ δ’ εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]άντι τ[ο]ῦτ’· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκόπει[σ]α
[Κάλ]λος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
[κρίννεν ἄρ]ιστον

[Ὃς τὸ πᾶν] σέβας Τροΐα[ς ὄ]λεσσ[εν,
Κωὐδὲ π]αῖδος οὐδὲ φ[ί]λων το[κ]ήων
[Πάμπαν] ἐμνάσθη, ͜ ἀ‹λλὰ› παράγαγ’ αὔταν
[πῆλε φίλει]σαν

[Κύπρις· εὔκ]αμπτον γὰρ [ὐπάγαγ’ ἆτορ
Αἴ κεν οὐ] κούφως τ[ιν’ ἔραν π]oήσῃ·
[Ὤς] με νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νέμναι-
σ’ οὐ παρεοίσας·

[Τᾶ]ς κε βολλοίμαν ἔρατόν τε βᾶμα
Κἀμάρυ‹γ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ τὰ Λύδων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[πεσδο]μάχεντας.

[Εὖ μὲν ἴδ]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[Λῷστ]ά ‹γ›' ἀνθρώπ[οισ', π]εδέχην δ’ ἄρασθαι.
[Τῶν πέδηχον ἐστι βρότοισι λῷον
ἢ λελάθεσθαι.]


Prole più amata di Terra e di Cielo

Folla di fanti o cavalier' si dice
O d’ navi sulla terra vincitrice
Di gara di beltade; io invece
Ch’è ciò ch’è amato;

Ben facile s’è ciò compreso fare
A ognun, ch’Elena, che potea mirare
Assai d’uomo beltade, ottimo, pare,
Ha giudicato

Chi in tutto onor di Troia cancellò,
E bimba e genitor’ non ricordò,
Ma, innamorata, lungi se ne andò,
E fu guidata

Dalla Ciprigna: do]cil [piega ’l cuore
Se] qu[alcun co]nduce ͜[a non] lieve ͜[amore;
Sì] Anattorḯ[a h]o ora in cuore,
Ch'è lungi andata:

L’amato passo suo preferirei
Veder, e lo splendor sul viso a lei,
Che carri Lidi, e Lidi ne’ clipei
Forte pugnare.

S’anche sappiamo ch’uomo mai toccare
Il mèi non può, voler partecipare;
{Di ciò ch’un tempo aveva, è per mortale
Mèi che scordare.}
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

Quīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm ēssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭpēr pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ hōc vērē făcĭlēst cŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmqu’ īll’ īps’ Ĕlĕn’ ēt vĭdēns sī
Mūltŭm ēx pūlchrīs hŏmĭnūm, vĭr ōmnĭ’
Ōptŭm’ hăbu͞it quī

Dīrŭīt tōtūm Trŏĭǣ hŏnōrĕm,
Fīlĭǣ cārû̄mquĕ sŭūm părēntŭm
Tōtŭm ōblītāst, ăt ĕ’ īllă lōng’ āb-
Dūxĭt ămōrĕ

[Cȳprĭ’:] nām [cōr sūb] dŏcĭl’ [īllă dūcĭt
Ē]ffĭcīt [s’ ŭt ha͞ud] lĕv’ [ămēt lŭbēt quĭs;
Sīccĕ] nūnc Ănāctŏr[ǣ ă]dīvĭt
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o;

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm īlli͞us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳdŭm ĕt īntŭ’ scūtīs
Quī hŭmĭ pūgnānt.

Scīmŭs ētsī ha͞ud pŏtĭs ōptŭmā’ssĕ
Fīĕrī vĭrīs, ăt hăbēndû̆m īllû̆m
Ēst mĕli͞us mōrtālĭbŭ’ prēx qu’ hăbēbānt
Qu’ ha͞ud mĕmĭnīssĕ.


Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Over black earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
The most are liked;

It’s easy t’ make this understood to all,
For Helen, who could see a lot of all
The human beauty, judged the best of all
The man she liked,

Who brought Troy’s honour downward totally,
Her parents nor her daughter, none did she
Remember, but was led away o’er sea,
In love, afar,

[By th’ Cyprus-Goddess:] for [heart] easilỳ
[She bends, if f]orce [it to love] not [lightlỳ]
She does; [of] Anactoria [m]emorỳ,
Who is afar,

I’ve now, whose lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chariots and soldiers
With shields in fight.

Although we know the best can never be
To man, for mortals better’s certainly
{Prayer1 of what they once had and memory
Than ’ts absence might.}.

Φίλτατον Γαίας γένος Ὀρράνω τε

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οι δὲ νάων φαῖσ' ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον· ἔγω δὲ κῆν' ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται.

[Πά]γ̣χυ δ' εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]ά̣ντι τ[ο]ῦ̣τ̣'· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέθοισα
Κάλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τ]ὸ̣ν ἄνδρα
Τν [πανάρ]ι̣στον

Καλλ[ίποι]σ̣' ἔβα' ς Τροΐαν πλέο̣ι̣σα
κωὐδ[ὲ π]α̣ῖ̣δος οὐδὲ φίλων τοκήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθ' ἀλλὰ παράγα̣̣γ' αὔταν
[κ]ω[κ ἀέκοι]σαν

[Κύπρις· ἄγν]αμπτον γὰρ [ἔχει] ν̣όημμα
[καὶ τέ]λει κούφως τ[ό κε πο]ι νοήσῃ̣
[Ὤς] μ̣ε̣ νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νεμναί-
[σ' οὐ] π̣αρ̣εοίσας.

[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρ̣ατόν τε βᾶμα
Κ̣ἀμάρυ‹χ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ̣ τὰ Λύδ̣ων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[πεσδομ]άχεντας

––Τέλος ᾄσματος––

[Ὄλβιον] μὲν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[πάμπ]α̣ν ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ' ἄρασθαι
[ἔστιν ἔσλων μοῖραν·] ἔγω δ' ἔμ' αὔτᾳ
Τοῦτο σύνοιδα.

[Στρωφαί τινες δύνανται τῇδε ἀπολωλεκέσθαι.]

. . . γένεσθαι
Ο[      ] . . . βὰ̣ς̣ ἐπ' ἄκ̣ρας
Τ̣α[      ]ν χ[ί]ον'· ἀ̣ δ̣ὲ̣ πόλλα
Πρὸς [

Ὠς δ[      ]ω̣ν ἀπέ̣χθ̣ην
Τω̣[      ] . δύ̤ν̤ατ', ὄττινας γὰρ
Εὖ θέω, κῆνοί με μάλιστα σίννον-
τ' ἐξ ἀδοκή[τω.]


Prole più amata di terra e di cielo

Ciò che sull[a] terra ne[r]a͜ è più bello –
Dicesi͜ – è͜ un plotone di fanti,͜ o ’n quello
Cavali͜eri, o flotta di navi;͜ è quello –
Dico – ch’è͜ amato.

Facil s’è c[i]ò͜ a [t]utti compreso fare,
Ch’Elena, avendo͜ anche͜ a superare
La beltà degl’[uo]mini assa͜i, per mare,
[Q]uell’uom lasc[iat]o

[Di ciascun m]igliore, ver’ Troia͜ andò,
[Fi]glia͜ e genitori non ricordò
Proprio͜ af[fatto], ma [lungi] la guidò,
[N]e[mmen forz]ata,

La Ciprigna: mai le si p]iega il cuore,
C[iò che] vuol [l']è facile a tutte l'ore.
Sì] Anattorḯ[a h]o ora in cuore,
Ch'è lungi andata:

Il [s]u’͜ amato passo preferireï
E ’l splendor vedere sul viso a leï
Che de’ Lidi͜ i carri, e ne͜i clipèï
[Fanti p]ugnare.

––Fine poesia––

[Gioia pie]na non ci può capitare;
[Sol possiam] noi [uom]ini implorare
[D'aver parte al bene;] ciò sé mi pare
Chiaro mostrare.

[Potremmo aver perso delle strofe qui.]

[–u–] succedere [–u–u]
[–u–] in punta di piedi andava
[–u] neve; lei molte cose [–u]
Verso [u–u]

Sì [u–u–u] odiare [–u
–u–u] può; chi io curo a me
Più d'ogn'altro male mi fa, ahimè,
All'improvviso.
Prōgĕni͞es cǣlī pĕrămāt’ ĕt ōrbĭs

[Q]uīd’ ĕquû̄mvĕ cūm pĕdĭtūmvĕ dīcūnt
Nāvĭūmv’ ēxērcĭtŭm [ē]ssĕ tērrā
Dēsŭp[ēr] pūlchērrĭm’, ĕg’ īpsă a͞utĕm
Quīdquĭd ămātŭr;

Prēndĕr’ h[ō]c [vē]rē făcĭlēst [c]ŭīquĕ
Mēntĕ: nāmque īps’ [hŏ]mĭn’ ēxquĕ cēllēns
Mūltă pūlchrīs īll’ Hĕlĕn’, ābrĕ[līnq]uēns
[Ōp]tŭmŭm [ōmni͞um]

I͞it vĭr’ ūrb’ ăd Īlĭŭm ūsă nāvĕ,
[Fī]lĭǣ cārû̄mquĕ sŭūm părēntŭm
Tō[tŭm] ōblītāst, ăt ĕ’ [ha͞udquĕ nōlēnt'
Īd sĭbĭ] dūxĭt

[Cȳprĭs: īll'] ĕnīm făcĭlēst [hăb]ērĕ
[Fāctă] cōrdĕ q[uǣ] vĕlĭt [ōbs]tĭnātō;
[Sīccĕ] nūnc Ānāctŏrĭ[ǣ ă]dīvĭt
Mē mĕmŏrāti͞o:

Mālĭm īncēssūm pĕrămātŭm [īlli͞]us
Ātquĕ lūcĕm āspĭcĕr’ ēiŭ’ vūltūs
Qu’ hōsquĕ cūrrūs Lȳdŭm ĕt īntŭ’ scūtīs
Quī [hŭmĭ p]ūgnānt.

––Finis carminis––

[Plē]năm ūmquām [lǣtĭtĭām] sĭbīmĕt
Nōn vĭdīt v[īv]ēns, tămĕn āpprĕcārī
[Pārtĕm ēst bǒnī pŏt';] ĕg' īpsă mīmĕt
Hōc vĭdĕō nūnc.

[Aliquot strophæ possunt hic perditæ esse.]

[–u–x–] fĭĕrī [u–x]
[–u] ārrēctō grăd' ĭēbăt [–x
–u–x–u] nĭv'; īllă plūră
[–uu] vērsǔs

Sīc [u–] ōdīssĕ [u–u–x
–] pŏtēst [x–uu] quōsquĕ cūrō,
Nōn ŏpīnātē fĕrĭūnt quĭdēm mē
Māxĭmŭm ōmni͞um.


Dearest offspring of Heaven and of Earth

Foot-soldiers’ army, one of ships, or knights
Ove[r] bla[c]k earth ’tis said that most delights;
I say, instead, that of what’s loved the sights
You’ll hold the best;

It’s easy t’ make t[h]is understood understood to [a]ll,
For Helen, who by far surpassed withal
The [hu]man beauty, l[ef]t [t]hat man [of all]
By far the [b]est,

And off she went to Troy by ship o’er sea,
Her parents nor her [da]ughter, [none] did she
Remember, but was led away o’er sea,
[W]i[ll]ing, afar,

[By th' Cyprus-Goddess: always] easilỳ
She [do]es [what her own] heart [unw]ieldilỳ
Doth want; [of] Anactoria [m]emorỳ,
Who is afar,

I’ve now, [who]se lovèd footfall I’d prefer
Together with her shining face and her
To see than Lydian chariots and soldiers
With shields in [f]ight.

––End of poem––

While a [m]an can ne'er [ful]ly [happy] be,
He can pray the gods to be [partially
Glad;] these things appear to me clëarlỳ
As e'er they might.

[Some stanzas may have been lost here.]

[–u–u] happen [u–u–
–u–u] tiptoed [u–u–
–u] Snow; [for] she many things [u–]
T'wards [uu–]

Thus [u–u–uu] hate [u–
–u–u–u] can; those indeed
I do care for, hurt me the most indeed,
Out of the blue.




Critical Note

I am sure you are thinking: «Oh my! What are all those versions? And which one is the correct one?». Well, let me first of all highlight a problem in establishing the answer to this question. I will do so by giving you the Grenfell-Hunt transcription of the papyrus giving us the bulk of this text, and the Campbell text annotated with comparisons to Lobel-Page and Voigt.





And no, I am not kidding. This is the actual situation. That is some serious difference, right? So who is right? Are these even the same poem? Well, clearly they are, there is way too much overlap for them not to be, isn't there now? Alright. I first present you with the older version of this note, in its spoiler form. The spoiler contains an extract of the Paracritical Note I wrote back in the days when I translated Sappho, in the original Italian, with only a few English notes. The important parts will be mentioned in the rest of the note, but I want to leave it for anyone willing to delve into that Italian prose to see exactly what I wrote about this poem back then.



With that out of the way, let us look at the timeline of the sources for this mess.

  1. Apollonius Dyscolus wrote a treatise on syntax, and in book 3 of said treatise, he quoted Sappho thus: «τὸ ἐρᾶν ὁμολογεῖ τὸ προσδιατίθεσθαι ὑπὸ τοῦ ἐρωμένου· διὸ καὶ δεόντως ἡ Σαπφὸ ἐπιτεταμένῳ μᾶλλον ὀνόματι ἐχρήσατο· ἐγὼ δὲ καὶ ἡ νοττῶτις ἐρᾶται»; now this is how the tradition gives it to us, with codices giving the καὶ ἡ νοττῶτις part as κηνοττωτις; in 1843, the Bergk edition of Sappho corrects this into its fr. 16, which reads «Ἔγω δὲ κῆνο, / τῶ τις ἐρᾶται»; in fact, the codices had it right, and the quote should read «ἔγω δὲ κῆν' ὄτ- / τω τις ἔραται», but Bergk possibly didn't know Aeolic doubles the tau in ὄτω, and for some reason went for a relative τῶ, perhaps to avoid the word split between lines; the introduction to the Sappho quote reads «loving agrees with being disposed of by the loved thing; for this reason Sappho suitably decleared, with an intensified name»;
  2. The Etymologicum Magnum, or Ἐτυμολογικὸν τὸ μέγα, has the following Sappho quote: «ὥσπερ δαμῶ, δαμείω, οὕτω θῶ θέω· καὶ παρὰ Σαπφοῖ· ὅττινας γὰρ εὖ θέω κῆνοί με μάλιστα σίννονται», «just like δαμῶ becomes δαμείω [in Aeolic], so θῶ becomes θέω; and in Sappho: those I care for, those hurt me the most»; this is Bergk fr. 14, actually corrected from κεῖνοι and σίνονται;
  3. Apollonius Dyscolus wrote a treatise on pronouns, and in it he quotes Sappho: «ἐγὼν Αἰολεῖς βαρέως· ἔγων δ' ἔμ' αὔτᾳ τοῦτο σύνοιδα Σαπφώ», that is «ἐγὼν is stressed on the first syllable in Aeolic: [Sappho quote], says Sappho»; Bergk here suggests perhaps συνώϊδα is correct, to make this an Alcaic hendecasyllabic, but why do so if it is already a perfectly fine ending for a Sapphic stanza?
  4. In 1914, Grenfell and Hunt publish volume X of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri; in it, P.Oxy. 1231 fr. 1 col. i is found, part of which is the above transcription, with various reading notes which are discussed at the papyri transcriptions post; I really wish I had an image of said papyrus to be able to tell what went on in l. 9, which is the only difference (outside lacuna fillings that is, and the oscillations on the critical notation for the sigma in l. 6, which is either absent, or uncertain, or certain, respectively in GH, LP, and Campbell) which is not sanable via reading uncertainties, at least as far as the P.Oxy. volume tells me;
  5. In 1976, P.Oxy. volume 21 appeared, where it was mentioned that two scraps were inserted in this fragment, one on the left, and one in the middle of the right portion; a combined text was given, which was essentially what Lobel-Page took up in 1955 in his Sappho edition; the transcriptions post makes an educated guess at the raw transcription of those two scraps, called P.Oxy. 2166(a) frr. 2a-2b (because of course two scraps have one number, so I have to add letters myself to distinguish them), discussing possibilities of splitting of Λ€ΟΙ between the 1231 fragment and one of the scraps from 2166(a); unfortunately, I do not (or at least, did not when I wrote the note, when I checkup the papyri post we will see) see any way to hypothise a form for this fragment that doesn't question the certain letters of Grenfell-Hunt, since supposing Λ€ΟΙ to be half on 1231 and half on 2166(a) would mean nothing could really be certain in 1231, right? However, that fragment definitely has to interfere with the OI, or the former ϹϹ̣ couldn't turn to OỊ by some magic it itself worked;
  6. P.Oxy. 2166(a) fr. 2a also gives us a grave accent alone in l. 12; now this definitely dispels the πῆλε φίλεισαν option; AFAIK the grave accent was used in papyri to warn about the presence of diphthongs, and nothing else; hence, all the options in my versions would be dispelled; so what is a likely reading for the papyrus? Well, ΚὼΥΚ is; so the versions with οὐκ ἀέκοισαν were almost correct;
  7. Lobel-Page in 1955, Voigt in 1971, and Campbell in 1982 basically follow this text, minus some minor oscillations; so this suggests the correct version is Campbell's, with a suitable completion of the holey stanzas, that is 4 and 6; but this is not the end of the story;
  8. By the way, Lobel-Page also inserts P.Oxy. 1231 fr. 36 into the mix, "quamvis dubitanter" (although doubtingly); I don't know what brings the two to do this, but they were right, as we shall see;
  9. In 2014, the P.GC. inv. 105 are published, which are discussed in the transcriptions post, and which cause a minor revolution; firstly, they confirm the doubtful reading of l. 6 in Lobel-Page and following, making it certain; then they destroy the Grenfell-Hunt (and Edmonds) completion of l. 9, as if 2166(a) hadn't already done that, by giving the CA at the end a certainty status; thirdly, they provide extra endings in the holey stanzas, which destroys all the completions I found back in the days for stanza 4, and revolutionizes stanza 6, throwing item 3 into it; fourthly, it gives a whole bunch of new lines, so many in fact that the poem, which went on up to the τ' ἐξ ἀδοκήτω line, is longer than any attested; this causes a split of poems essentially necessary, and since stanza 6 is a very convenient splitting point, given that its first line could start with ὄλβιον instead of εὖ μὲν ἴδμεν, thus satisfying the alphabetical arrangement of the sequence of poems found in 1231 and in P.GC., this tells us the poem ended at stanza 5, and stanza 6 started a new poem, of which we now have much more than ever before;
  10. Also, item 2 gets thrown into that second poem, at the very end, and P.Oxy. 1231 fr. 36 is confirmed to fit into this mix.
If I had done my research back in the days, I would not have considered both versions equally likely, and might have saved some translations, only doing the GW ones. But I did not. Here is the timeline of my work on this.
  • I started off Greek Wikisource and Bibliotheca Augustana, very similar, producing the GW version;
  • Then I probably looked at English Wikisource or GH or a combination, et voilà the Oxy/GW, where GW is for some completions which I preferred in the GW version and still fit the GH version;
  • Then I looked at TCPOS and found a different take on l. 12, where instead of τὰν ἀέκοισαν (the unwilling one, i.e. Helen was unwilling to go away to Troy) I found οὐκ ἀέκοισαν (not unwilling, again referred to Helen); this sounded much better than τὰν ἀέκοισαν, so I adopted it, et voilà the GW+TCPOS version, which was hidden in the Paracritical note while the GW version stayed in the file;
  • The Oxy version had πῆλε φίλεισαν there, taken once again from TCPOS to have a complete l. 13, instead of keeping Κύπρις ἔραισαν as found in the GH P.Oxy. volume; TCPOS also helped me figure out πεδέχω takes the genitive for the object, and not the accusative, so that I restored the original English Wikisource completion of stanza 6, which I had previously amended; this gives the GW/Oxy+TCPOS version, again hidden in the Paracritical Note;
  • Then I thought this poem was done with, and went on; on the way through other poems, I found safopoemas.doc referred to on TCPOS; this is the "para imprimir" (to be printed) version of a Spanish Sappho edition, with text prepared as whoever prepared it wanted, essentially, and translations by Señor Montemayor; this document is just horrible: typos galore, texts that are incredibly incomprehensible and don't even match the Spanish or any other text; however, in some points, despite stating they prefer to follow those that complete less, they actually complete more than others (even Edmonds at times, and that goes a long way); in this poem, they provide an interesting completion of stanza 4, which I took up and made into my file's "fragment re-16" at the end of the GW poems; that was the GW+safopoemas version;
  • Finally, readying the blog, I saw this mess, and I thought it would be terribly asymmetric not to have a GW/Oxy+safopoemas version, so I created it, and just adjusted the translations as explained in the intro.

So that explains the multiple versions. Notice that I chose ἀεὶ τὸ θῆλυ over ἔφυ βρότων κῆρ because of the monosyllabic last word, though probably the second version was reluctantly doffed, given that it is more general in considering "mortals" instead of "females"; moreover, the safopoemas versions are editings of the TCPOS versions.
Naturally, working for the blog I also came about P.GC., and that is discussed at (guess…) the transcriptions post, where the following combined text of everything is given, 1231 fr. 1 being uncolored, fr. 36 being red, 2166(a) being blue, P.GC. being yellow, item 3 being purple and item 2 being brown, oh and PSI 123 (yep, I forgot about that, it's just a few extra letters in the last line) being pink:

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οι δὲ νάων φαῖσ' ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον· ἔγω δὲ κῆν' ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται.
[Πά]γ̣χυ δ' εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]ά̣ντι τ[ο]ῦ̣τ̣'· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέθοισα
Κάλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τ]ὸ̣ν ἄνδρα
Τν [ άρ]ι̣στον
Καλλ[ίποι]σ̣' ἔβα' ς Τροΐαν πλέο̣ι̣σα
Κωὐδ[ὲ π]α̣ῖ̣δος οὐδὲ φίλων τοκήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθ' ἀλλὰ παράγα̣̣γ' αὔταν
[.] [......]σαν
[.......]αμπτον γὰρ [ ] ν̣όημμα
[....] . . . κούφως τ[.....] . νοήση̣
[Ὤς] μ̣ε̣ νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νεμναί-
[σ' οὐ] π̣αρ̣εοίσας.
[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρ̣ατόν τε βᾶμα
Κ̣ἀμάρυ‹χ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ̣ τὰ Λύδ̣ων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[......μ]άχεντας
[.......]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[.....]α̣ν ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ' ἄρασθαι
] ἔγω δ' ἔμ̣' αὔ̣τ̣ᾳ
Τοῦτο σύνοιδα.
[Possible lacuna of some whole stanzas.]
. . . γένεσθαι
Ο[      ] . . . βὰ̣ς̣ ἐπ' ἄκ̣ρας
Τ̣α[      ]ν χ[ί]ον'· ἀ̣ δ̣ὲ̣ πόλλα

Πρὸς
Ὠς δ[      ]ω̣ν ἀπέ̣χθ̣ην
Τω̣[      ] . δύ̤ν̤ατ', ὄ̣ττινας γ̤ὰρ

Εὖ θ̣έω, κῆνοί με μά̤λ̤ιστα σ̣ίννον-
τ' ἐξ ἀδοκή[τω.

Before I take Obbink's apparatus criticus and use it to complete the above, one last thing. The P.Oxy. 1231 fragment left the possibility of μεμναι in l. 15, with Edmonds taking it as «[ἄμ]με νῦν, Ϝανακτορί[α, τὺ] μέμναι- / [σ' οὐ] παρεοίσαις», which of course conflicts with the certain ΟΙϹΑϹ in the papyrus, and which English Wikisource tampered with to get [Οὐ]δὲ νῦω, Ἀνακτορί[α, τὺ] μέμναι / [δὴ] παρεοίσας, which probably doesn't make sense as μέμναι doesn't exist; the Edmonds text is translated by Edmonds to «See to it then that you remember us Anactoria, now that we are parted», and English Wikisource gives the translation «So mightest thou fail, My Anactoria, if she were with you», which is Cox's translation, and I cannot see how this matches the original, given that μέμναι, if it exists, should be a form of "to remember", not "to fail". In any case, P.GC. dispels that option, making the nu of Ν€ΜΝΑΙ certain. That said, here is the completed text with a prose translation.

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οι δὲ νάων φαῖσ' ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον· ἔγω δὲ κῆν' ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται.

[Πά]γ̣χυ δ' εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]ά̣ντι τ[ο]ῦ̣τ̣'· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέθοισα
Κ̣άλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα̣ [τ]ὸ̣ν ἄνδρα
Τ̣ὸν [πανάρ]ι̣στον

Καλλ[ίποι]σ̣' ἔβα' ς Τροΐαν πλέοι̣σα
κωὐδ[ὲ π]α̣ῖ̣δος οὐδὲ φίλων τοκήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθ' ἀλλὰ παράγα̣γ' αὔταν
[κ]ω[κ ἀέκοι]σαν

[Κύπρις· ἄγν]αμπτον γὰρ [ἔχει] ν̣όημμα
[καὶ τέ]λει κούφως τ[ό κε πο]ι νοήσῃ̣
[Ὤς] μ̣ε̣ νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]νεμναί-
[σ' οὐ] π̣αρ̣εοίσας.

[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρ̣ατόν τε βᾶμα
Κ̣ἀμάρυ‹χ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ̣ τὰ Λύδ̣ων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[πεσδομ]άχεντας

––Τέλος ᾄσματος––

[Ὄλβιον] μὲν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[πάμπ]α̣ν ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ' ἄρασθαι
[ἔστιν ἔσλων μοῖραν·] ἔγω δ' ἔμ' αὔτᾳ
Τοῦτο σύνοιδα.

[Στρωφαί τινες δύνανται τῇδε ἀπολωλεκέσθαι.]

. . . γένεσθαι
Ο[      ] . . . βὰ̣ς̣ ἐπ' ἄκ̣ρας
Τ̣α[      ]ν χ[ί]ον'· ἀ̣ δ̣ὲ̣ πόλλα
Πρὸς [

Ὠς δ[      ]ω̣ν ἀπέ̣χθ̣ην
Τω̣[      ] . δύ̤ν̤ατ', ὄττινας γὰρ
Εὖ θέω, κῆνοί με μάλιστα σίννον-
τ' ἐξ ἀδοκή[τω.]
[S]ome say that an army of knights, some one of pedestrian soldiers,
Some one of ships, ove[r] the da[r]k earth
Is the most beautiful thing; I say, instead, that it's whatever
One loves.

It's [wh]olly easy to make t[h]is understood
To [a]ll: for she who had so much
Of [hu]man beauty, Helen, le[f]t [t]he man
That was the [b]est [of all]

And went sailing to Troy,
No[r] did she remember of her [d]aughter or of her dear parents
At [all], but [Cypris] led her away,
[N]o[t even unwill]ing:

Indeed [she has] an [unw]ielding mind,
[And] easily [comp]letes w[hatever] she thinks of.
[Thus] Anactori[a] has now been brough[t] to my mind,
Who is [not] present.

I had rather see [he]r loved footfall
And the bright sparkle on her face
Than the chariots of the Lydians and their soldiers clad in shields
[F]ighting [on foot].

––End of poem––

While it is impossible for me[n] to be
[Comple]tely [happy], [it is possible] to pray to have
[A share of good things;] and I myself
Know this well.

[A few stanzas may have been lost here.]

. . . happen
[      ] . . . walked on tiptoes
[      ]ν snow; but she many things
Unto [

Thus [      ] hate
[      ] . can; for those whom
I treat well, those more than all harm me
Unexpecte[dly.]

Note that I kept the quotes as in P.GC. plus integrations in the combined text to show exactly what the papyrus had, but then in the above completed text I reverted to the usual practice of having quotes all certain. I chose τὸν πανάριστον because that's what I originally had, but τόν περ ἄριστον is just as likely.
As for the critical notation, I didn't bother making it match exactly with the transcriptions, because it would be too boring. I just made sure the Greek text had no weird or misused notations, and left the other texts as they were. Here is the combined text from the transcriptions post, with only 1231 frr. 1 and 36 on the left, and 2166(a) on the right, 1231 fr. 1 uncolored, fr. 36 red, 2166(a) scraps both blue:

[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οι δὲ νάων φαῖσ' ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον· ἔγω δὲ κῆν' ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται.
[Πά]γ̣χυ δ' εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]ά̣ντι τ[ο]ῦ̣τ̣'· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκό̣π̣ε̣ι̣[σ]α
[Κάλ]λος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα̣ [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
[Κρίννεν ἄρ]ι̣στον
[Ὂς τὸ πᾶν] σ̣εβας Τροΐα[ς ὄ]λεσσ̣[εν]
[Κωὐδὲ π]α̣ῖ̣δος οὐδὲ φ̣[ί]λ̣ων το[κ]ήων
[.......] ἐμνάσθ' ἀ[λλὰ] παράγαγ' αὔταν
[........]σαν
[.......]αμπτον γὰρ [
[....] . . . κούφως τ[.......]οήση̣
[Πῆ]λ̣ε̣ νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]ν̣εμναί-
[σθ]η̣‹ν› ἀπ̣εοίσας.
[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρ̣ατόν τε βᾶμα
Κ̣ἀμάρυ‹χ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ̣ τὰ Λύδ̣ων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[......μ]άχεντας
[.......]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[.....]α̣ν ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ' ἄρασθαι
[Several lines lost]
Πρὸς [
Ὠς δ[

[Several lines lost]
τ' ἐξ ἀδοκή[τω.
[Ο]ἰ μὲν ἰππήων στρότον οἰ δὲ πέσδων
Οι δὲ νάων φαῖσ' ἐπ[ὶ] γᾶν μέλαι[ν]αν
[Ἔ]μμεναι κάλλιστον· ἔγω δὲ κῆν' ὄτ-
τῳ τις ἔραται.
[Πά]γ̣χυ δ' εὔμαρες σύνετον πόησαι
[Π]ά̣ντι τ[ο]ῦ̣τ̣'· ἀ γὰρ πόλυ περσκέ̣θ̣ο̣ι̣[σ]α
Κάλλος [ἀνθ]ρώπων Ἐλένα [τὸ]ν ἄνδρα
Τν [ άρ]ι̣στον
Καλλ[ίποι]σ̣' ἔβα' ς Τροΐαν πλέο̣ι̣[σα]
Κωὐδ[ὲ π]α̣ῖ̣δος οὐδὲ φίλων το[κ]ήων
Πά[μπαν] ἐμνάσθ' ἀλλὰ παράγαγ' αὔταν
[.] .̀ [......]σαν
[.......]αμπτον γὰρ [
[....] . . . κούφως τ[.......]οήση̣
[Ὤς] μ̣ε̣ νῦν Ἀνακτορί[ας ὀ]ν̣εμναί-
[σ' οὐ] π̣αρ̣εοίσας.
[Τᾶ]ς ‹κ›ε βολλοίμαν ἔρ̣ατόν τε βᾶμα
Κ̣ἀμάρυ‹χ›μα λάμπρον ἴδην προσώπω
Ἢ̣ τὰ Λύδ̣ων ἄρματα κἀν ὄπλοισι
[......μ]άχεντας
[.......]μεν οὐ δύνατον γένεσθαι
[.....]α̣ν ἀνθρώπ[οις, π]εδέχην δ' ἄρασθαι
[Several lines lost]
Πρὸς [
Ὠς δ[

[Several lines lost]
τ' ἐξ ἀδοκή[τω.


The completed text with P.GC. does have the correct notation, being just the combined text with no colors and more completions. In the original Greek text of the translated versions, in some versions, for some fundamental notational misunderstanding, I had applied angled brackets for lacuna fillings and square ones for emendations, but then I had slashes and backslashes, both double and single (e.g. /a\ and //a\\), for purposes I cannot tell, and braces probably for completely lost lines.
As a final remark, Grenfell-Hunt have a different suggestion for the completoin of stanza 6: «ἔστι πὰρ θέων μακάρων ἔκοισαν / τῶν παρεόντων», which is Wilamowitz's completion ("W-M", as GH puts it), and makes the stanza translate to «Well do we know that it is not possible for the best things / To happen to men, but it is possible to pray / To have a share in the gods' wills / If they are present». In translating, I assumed ἔστι πὰρ was meant as tmesis and anastrophe of πάρεστι, for otherwise I have no clue how the sentence is supposed to be parsed. And the note is over.

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