Pherecrates, Fr. 176 (Photius e 46)


“The gods are always screwing us.”


ἀεί ποθ᾿ ἡμῖν ἐγκιλικίζουσ᾿ οἱ θεοί


The verb ἐγκιλικίζουσ᾿ means “to be mean or treacherous like the Cilicians”. Obviously, the reference is lost on a modern audience. I went colloquial. I thought that “the gods are always messing with us” might be less abrasive, but “screwing” has a nice sense of “meanness” and the double entendre… Any other suggestions?


Who’s Pherecrates? A Comic poet, An old one. And Photius? Not as old or sexy.

3 thoughts on “Pherecrates, Fr. 176 (Photius e 46)

  1. There is a similar expression in Mod Greek: “Μου την έφερε ο … (subject)”, meaning ‘tricked’, ‘back-stubbed’, ‘be taken for a ride’.

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