Terence on His Haters

Terence, The Woman of Andros Prologue 15-23

“These people attack the poem and deny
That it is proper to ruin stories in this way.
But aren’t they showing that they understand nothing in being so clever?
When they criticize me, they accuse Naevius, Plautus and Ennius,
Those authorities I hold as my my own,
Since it is better to take their negligence as a model
Than to copy the pedantic diligence of those fools.
I warn them to be quiet from now on and stop
Talking shit unless they want to own up to their own failings.”

id isti vituperant factum atque in eo disputant
contaminari non decere fabulas.
faciuntne intellegendo ut nil intellegant?
qui quom hunc accusant, Naevium, Plautum, Ennium
accusant, quos hic noster auctores habet,
quorum aemulari exoptat neglegentiam
potius quam istorum obscuram diligentiam.
dehinc ut quiescant porro moneo et desinant
maledicere, malefacta ne noscant sua.

 

Terence on His Haters

Terence, The Woman of Andros Prologue 15-23

“These people attack the poem and deny
That it is proper to ruin stories in this way.
But aren’t they showing that they understand nothing in being so clever?
When they criticize me, they accuse Naevius, Plautus and Ennius,
Those authorities I hold as my my own,
Since it is better to take their negligence as a model
Than to copy the pedantic diligence of those fools.
I warn them to be quiet from now on and stop
Talking shit unless they want to own up to their own failings.”

id isti vituperant factum atque in eo disputant
contaminari non decere fabulas.
faciuntne intellegendo ut nil intellegant?
qui quom hunc accusant, Naevium, Plautum, Ennium
accusant, quos hic noster auctores habet,
quorum aemulari exoptat neglegentiam
potius quam istorum obscuram diligentiam.
dehinc ut quiescant porro moneo et desinant
maledicere, malefacta ne noscant sua.

 

Terence on His Haters

Terence, The Woman of Andros Prologue 15-23

“These people attack the poem and deny
That it is proper to ruin stories in this way.
But aren’t they showing that they understand nothing in being so clever?
When they criticize me, they accuse Naevius, Plautus and Ennius,
Those authorities I hold as my my own,
Since it is better to take their negligence as a model
Than to copy the pedantic diligence of those fools.
I warn them to be quiet from now on and stop
Talking shit unless they want to own up to their own failings.”

id isti vituperant factum atque in eo disputant
contaminari non decere fabulas.
faciuntne intellegendo ut nil intellegant?
qui quom hunc accusant, Naevium, Plautum, Ennium
accusant, quos hic noster auctores habet,
quorum aemulari exoptat neglegentiam
potius quam istorum obscuram diligentiam.
dehinc ut quiescant porro moneo et desinant
maledicere, malefacta ne noscant sua.

 

Funny Fragments from Philyllius and Phrynichus (Old Comedy)

Philyllius, fr. 20 (from “The Snail”)

“My grandfather was a dappled dogfish”

ὁ πάππος ἦν μοι γαλεὸς ἀστερίας

Philyllius, fr. 20 (from “The Snail”)

“I am neither a cicada nor a snail, woman!”

ΚΟΧΛΙΑΣ. Φιλύλλιος (I 787 K)·
οὔκ εἰμι τέττιξ οὐδὲ κοχλίας, ὦ γύναι.

Phrynichus, fr. 3 (Athenaeus 165b)

“The hardest of all modern labors is to protect ourselves from them [the youth].
For they have some kind of a goad in their fingers, this man-hating bloom of youth.
They talk sweetly enough as they circum-ambulate the marketplace with another—
But when they take their seats, they mock the men they addressed sweetly
Scratching deep furrows into them once they’ve found themselves in a group”

ἐστὶν δ’ αὐτούς γε φυλάττεσθαι τῶν νῦν χαλεπώτατον ἔργον.
ἔχουσι γάρ τι κέντρον ἐν τοῖς δακτύλοις, μισάνθρωπον ἄνθος ἥβης·
εἶθ’ ἡδυλογοῦσιν ἅπασιν ἀεὶ κατὰ τὴν ἀγορὰν περιόντες.
ἐπὶ τοῖς βάθροις ὅταν ὦσιν, ἐκεῖ τούτοις οἷς ἡδυλογοῦσι
μεγάλας ἀμυχὰς καταμύξαντες καὶ συγκύψαντες ἅπαντας γελῶσι.

As If Monday Weren’t Unfunny Enough: Four Fragments from Theopompos

Theopompos was a minor poet composing in the later years of Attic Old Comedy (c. 410-380?). Here are four of his remaining fragments:

Fr. 16 (Diogenes Laertius 3.26)

“One thing is not even one thing,
And two are scarcely one either, according to Plato.”

ἓν γάρ ἐστιν οὐδὲ ἕν,
τὰ δὲ δύο μόλις ἕν ἐστιν, ὥς φησιν Πλάτων.

Fr. 34

“Euripides didn’t say it badly at all:
The truly happy man dines an another’s expense”

Εὐριπίδου τἄρ’ ἐστὶν οὐ κακῶς ἔχον,
τἀλλότρια δειπνεῖν τὸν καλῶς εὐδαίμονα.

Fr. 60

“Eileithuia has been pardoned by women
For being so tight-lipped about her craft.”

ἀλλ’ ἡ μὲν Εἰλείθυια συγγνώμην ἔχει
ὑπὸ τῶν γυναικῶν οὖσα καταπλὴξ τὴν τέχνην.

[Eileithuia was a goddess of childbirth]

Fr. 65

“Stretching out drinking in the three-couched room,
We took turns singing the songs of Telamon to each other”

κατακείμενοι μαλακώτατ’ ἐπὶ τρικλινίῳ
Τελαμῶνος οἰμώζοντες ἀλλήλοις μέλη.