1.42

ἡγεῖτο δὲ τῶν μὲν Αἰολοκένταυρος, τῶν δὲ Θαλασσοπότης· καὶ μάχη αὐτοῖς ἐγεγένητο, ὡς ἐδόκει, λείας ἕνεκα· ἐλέγετο γὰρ ὁ Θαλασσοπότης πολλὰς ἀγέλας δελφίνων τοῦ Αἰολοκενταύρου ἐληλακέναι, ὡς ἦν ἀκούειν ἐπικαλούντων ἀλλήλοις καὶ τὰ ὀνόματα τῶν βασιλέων ἐπιβοωμένων. τέλος δὲ νικῶσιν οἱ τοῦ Αἰολοκενταύρου καὶ νήσους τῶν πολεμίων καταδύουσιν ἀμφὶ τὰς πεντήκοντα καὶ ἑκατόν· καὶ ἄλλας τρεῖς λαμβάνουσιν αὐτοῖς ἀνδράσιν· αἱ δὲ λοιπαὶ πρύμναν κρουσάμεναι ἔφευγον. οἱ δὲ μέχρι τινὸς διώξαντες, ἐπειδὴ ἑσπέρα ἦν, τραπόμενοι πρὸς τὰ ναυάγια τῶν πλείστων ἐπεκράτησαν καὶ τὰ ἑαυτῶν ἀνείλοντο· καὶ γὰρ ἐκείνων κατέδυσαν νῆσοι οὐκ ἐλάττους τῶν ὀγδοήκοντα. ἔστησαν δὲ καὶ τρόπαιον τῆς νησομαχίας ἐπὶ τῇ κεφαλῇ τοῦ κήτους μίαν τῶν πολεμίων νῆσον ἀνασταυρώσαντες. ἐκείνην μὲν οὖν τὴν νύκτα περὶ τὸ θηρίον ηὐλίσαντο ἐξάψαντες αὐτοῦ τὰ ἀπόγεια καὶ ἐπ᾽ ἀγκυρῶν πλησίον ὁρμισάμενοι· καὶ γὰρ ἀγκύραις ἐχρῶντο μεγάλαις ὑαλίναις καρτεραῖς. τῇ ὑστεραίᾳ δὲ θύσαντες ἐπὶ τοῦ κήτους καὶ τοὺς οἰκείους θάψαντες ἐπ᾽ αὐτοῦ ἀπέπλεον ἡδόμενοι καὶ ὥσπερ παιᾶνας ᾄδοντες. ταῦτα μὲν τὰ κατὰ τὴν νησομαχίαν γενόμενα.

ἐγεγένητο: plupf. of γίγνομαι, "had come about."

ὡς ἐδόκει: "as it seemed" (S. 2992).

δελφίνων: stealing dolphins instead of herds of cattle, a common event in myth and history.

ἐληλακέναι: perf. infin. of ἐλαύνω in indir. statement after ἐλέγετο, "was said to have driven off."

ὡς ἦν: "since it was possible" S. 1985), explaining the source of his knowledge.

ἐπικαλούντων, ἐπιβοωμένων: pres. part. gen. pl. after ἀκούειν, "to hear them disputing (with each other) and shouting."

τέλος δέ: "and at last" (S. 1611).

οἱ τοῦ Αἰολοκενταύρου: "the men on the side of Gleaming-centaur" (for the substantival power of the article, see S. 1153d).

ἀμφὶ τὰς πεντήκοντα καὶ ἑκατόν: "around 150," ἀμφί means "around, approximately" with numbers (S. 1681).

αὐτοῖς ἀνδράσιν: "men and all" (S. 1525).

πρύμναν κρουσάμεναι: "back watering" (i.e. reversing the direction of the oars so as to slow the boat down).

μέχρι τινὸς: "for some time."

τραπόμενοι: 2nd aor. from τρέπω, "after turning (back)."

ἐπεκράτησαν: aor. 3 pl. of ἐπικρατέω, "they took possession of (+ gen.)."

τὰ (sc. ναυάγια) ἑαυτῶν ἀνείλοντο: aor. 3 pl. of ἀναιρέω, "they picked up their own (wrecks)," i.e. salvaged what they could from their own damaged boats.

ἐκείνων...νῆσοι οὐκ ἐλάττους τῶν ὀγδοήκοντα: ἐλάττους, nom. pl., "no fewer than 80 of their islands," (lit. "the islands of those people, no fewer than 80)." 

ἔστησαν τρόπαιον τῆς νησομαχίας: aor. 3 pl. of ἵστημι, "they set up a trophy of the island-fight." νησομαχία appears only here and Lucian presumably coined it on analogy with words like ναυμαχία (sea-battle), τειχομαχία (siege), etc.

ἀνασταυρώσαντες: aor. part. of ἀνασταυρόω, used instrumentally, "by transfixing (one of the islands)." They improbably set up an island on the head of the whale as a kind of nautical analogue to a trophy used to mark the turning point in a land battle.

ἐκείνην μὲν οὖν τὴν νύκτα: "now for that night," μὲν οὖν used here to mark a transition (Denniston GP 470-472). For the case of νύκτα, see S. 1582 and G. 538.

ἐξάψαντες αὐτοῦ τὰ ἀπόγεια: aor. part. of ἐξάπτω, "attaching their shore lines to it (i.e. the whale)." αὐτοῦ is genitive because it is associated with a verb of touching or taking hold of (S. 1345).

ἐπ’ ἀγκυρῶν πλησίον ὁρμισάμενοι: "riding at anchor close (to the whale)."  ἐπ’ ἀγκυρῶν ὁρμεῖν, "to ride at anchor," means to secure a boat by letting an anchor sink down to the bottom of the sea.

ἀγκύραις...ὑαλίναις: "glass anchors."  Harmon (Loeb translator) suggests that ὑαλίναις was chosen for its similarity to ξυλίναις "wooden." In so doing, Lucian suggests the existence of strong glass anchors while simultaneously alluding to a more typical material for anchors. For more on the choice of glass here, see Georgiadou and Larmour ad loc.

τῇ ὑστεραίᾳ (sc. ἡμέρᾳ): "on the following (day)" (G. 527c; S. 1539 and 1540).

θάψαντες: aor. part. of θάπτω, "having buried."

ὥσπερ παιᾶνας: "some sort of victory songs."

γενόμενα: aor. part. of γίνομαι (=γίγνομαι: S. 89), "the events."

VERB LIST

Αἰολοκένταυρος, ὁ: "Gleaming-centaur"

Θαλασσοπότης, -ου, ὁ: "Sea-drinker"

λεία, ἡ: booty, plunder, piracy

ἀγέλη, ἡ: a herd

δελφίς, -ῖνος, ὁ: a dolphin

ἐπικαλέω: call upon; dispute with (+ dat.)

ἐπιβοάω: call upon or to, cry out to

καταδύω: go down, sink; (causal) make to sink, sink

πεντήκοντα: fifty

ἑκατόν: a hundred

πρύμνα, -ης, ἡ: the stern, poop

κρούω: strike, smite

ἑσπέρα, ἡ: evening

ναυάγιον, τό: a piece of wreckage; a wreck

ἐπικρατέω: rule over (+ gen.)

καταδύω: go down, sink, set

ὀγδοήκοντα: eighty

τρόπαιον, τό: a trophy

νησομαχία, ἡ: an island-fight

κῆτος, -ους, τό: a sea-monster, huge fish, whale 

ἀνασταυρόω: impale, transfix

θηρίον, τό: a wild animal, beast

αὐλίζομαι: camp

ἐξάπτω: fasten (something acc. to something gen.)

ἀπόγεια, τά: shore lines

ἄγκυρα, ἡ: anchor

ὁρμίζω: moor, anchor

ὑάλινος, -η, -ον: of crystal or glass

καρτερός, -ά, -όν: strong

ὑστεραῖος, -α, -ον: following, next (sc. day)

θάπτω: pay the last dues to a corpse, bury

ἀποπλέω: sail away, sail off

ἥδομαι: enjoy, take pleasure

παιάν, παιᾶνος, ὁ: song of triumph

ᾄδω (ἀείδω): sing

μηκέτι: no more, no longer

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Suggested Citation

Eric Casey, Stephen Nimis, and Evan Hayes, Lucian: True History, Book 1. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2014. ISBN: 978-1-947822-05-4. http://dcc.dickinson.edu/lucian-true/book-1/1-42