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Ancient Greek, Greek Texts / 14.03.2011

Introduction. "Philoctetes" is one of Sophocles latest plays. It is unusual in several respects, with a small all-male cast and without a tragic ending. The text of this extract is taken from "A Greek Anthology", JACT, Cambridge University Press, 2002. The prologue and epilogue to this extract are also repeated here. Prologue. Philoctetes joined the Greek expedition to Troy. During a halt to offer sacrifice at the island of Chryse he was bitten by a snake. The wound festered, and the stench and his cries so disturbed his comrades...

Ancient Greek, Greek Texts / 17.01.2011

Introduction. Euripides (c.485-406 B.C.) was the last of the three great Fifth Century B.C. Athenian tragedians. "Alcestis", dated to 438 B.C. is his first surviving play, but it is not a tragedy, as it was produced in the place of a satyr play, the semi-comic treatment of a myth, to accompany a set of three tragedies. The background to this extract is as follows. The god Apollo had been condemned by Zeus to serve as the slave of Admetus, King of Pherae, for one year. Because Admetus had treated...

Latin, Latin Grammar / 17.01.2011

"Nunc est bibendum", of which "Now it is time to drink" is but one of the many possible translations, is one of the most famous quotations from Latin literature. It comes from the first line of carmen XXXVII of Horace's Odes, Book I, a poem written to celebrate the news of the death of Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt, in 30 B.C. Sabidius' purpose in this article is to analyse the grammatical significance of this short clause and, in particular to discuss whether 'bibendum' is a gerund or gerundive.