μικρόν γ’ ἄνωθεν, οὐ τὰ πρὸς τοῦτον μόνον240
πραχθένθ’, ἵν’ ᾖ σοι καὶ σαφῆ τὰ πράγματα.
ἐν τῷ δασεῖ τῷ πλησίον τῶν χωρίων
τούτων ἐποίμαινον τριακοστὴν ἴσως,
βέλτιστε, ταύτην ἡμέραν αὐτὸς μόνος
κἀκκείμενον παιδάριον εὗρον νήπιον245
ἔχον δέραια καὶ τοιουτονί τινα
περὶ τούτων ἐστίν.
οὐκ ἐᾷ λέγειν.
ἐὰν λαλῇς μεταξύ, τῇ βακτηρίαι
ἀνειλόμην, ἀπῆλθον οἴκαδ’ αὔτ’ ἔχων,250
τρέφειν ἔμελλον. ταῦτ’ ἔδοξέ μοι τότε·
ἐν νυκτὶ βουλὴν δ’, ὅπερ ἅπασι γίνεται,
διδοὺς ἐμαυτῷ διελογιζόμην· ἐμοὶ
τί παιδοτροφίας καὶ κακῶν; πόθεν δ’ ἐγὼ
τοσαῦτ’ ἀναλώσω; τί φροντίδων ἐμοί;255
τοιουτοσί τις ἦν. ἐποίμαινον πάλιν
ἕωθεν. ἦλθεν οὗτος—ἐστὶ δ’ ἀνθρακεύς—
εἰς τὸν τόπον τὸν αὐτὸν ἐκπρίσων ἐκεῖ
στελέχη· πρότερον δέ μοι συνήθης ἐγεγόνει.
λαλοῦμεν ἀλλήλοις. σκυθρωπὸν ὄντα με260
ἰδών, “τί σύννους” φησὶ “Δᾶος;” “τί γάρ;” ἐγώ,
“περίεργός εἰμι,” καὶ τὸ πρᾶγμ’ αὐτῷ λέγω,
ὡς εὗρον, ὡς ἀνειλόμην. ὁ δὲ τότε μὲν
εὐθὺς πρὶν εἰπεῖν πάντ’ ἐδεῖθ’, “οὕτω τί σοι
ἀγαθὸν γένοιτο Δᾶε” παρ’ ἕκαστον λέγων,265
“ἐμοὶ τὸ παιδίον δός. οὕτως εὐτυχής,
οὕτως ἐλεύθερος. γυναῖκά” φησι “γὰρ
ἔχω, τεκούσῃ δ’ ἀπέθανεν τὸ παιδίον”,
ταύτην λέγων, ἣ νῦν ἔχει τὸ παιδίον.
ὅλην τὴν ἡμέραν
κατέτριψε. λιπαροῦντι καὶ πείθοντί με
ὑπεσχόμην. ἔδωκ’, ἀπῆλθεν μυρία
εὐχόμενος ἀγαθά· λαμβάνων μου κατεφίλει
τὰς χεῖρας. ἐπόεις ταῦτα;
μετὰ τῆς γυναικὸς περιτυχών μοι νῦν ἄφνω275
τὰ τότε συνεκτεθέντα τούτῳ—μικρὰ δὲ
ἦν ταῦτα καὶ λῆρός τις, οὐθέν—ἀξιοῖ
ἀπολαμβάνειν καὶ δεινὰ πάσχειν φήσ’, ὅτι
οὐκ ἀποδίδωμ’, αὐτὸς δ’ ἔχειν ταῦτ’ ἀξιῶ.
ἐγὼ δέ γ’ αὐτόν φημι δεῖν ἔχειν χάριν280
οὗ μετέλαβεν δεόμενος· εἰ μὴ πάντα δὲ
τούτῳ δίδωμ’, οὐκ ἐξετασθῆναί με δεῖ.
εἰ καὶ βαδίζων εὗρεν ἅμ’ ἐμοὶ ταῦτα καὶ
ἦν κοινὸς Ἑρμῆς, τὸ μὲν ἂν οὗτος ἔλαβεν ἄν,
τὸ δ’ ἐγώ· μόνου δ’ εὑρόντος, οὐ παρὼν τότε285
ἅπαντ’ ἔχειν οἴει σε δεῖν, ἐμὲ δ’ οὐδὲ ἕν;
τὸ πέρας· δέδωκά σοι τι τῶν ἐμῶν ἐγώ·
εἰ τοῦτ’ ἀρεστόν ἐστί σοι, καὶ νῦν ἔχε·
εἰ δ’ οὐκ ἀρέσκει, μετανοεῖς δ’, ἀπόδος πάλιν
καὶ μηδὲν ἀδίκει μηδ’ ἐλαττοῦ. πάντα δέ,290
τὰ μὲν παρ’ ἑκόντος, τὰ δὲ κατισχύσαντά με,
οὐ δεῖ σ’ ἔχειν. εἴρηκα τόν γ’ ἐμὸν λόγον.
δάσος -ους τό: thicket
ποιμαίνω ποιμήσω ἐποίμαινον: to herd
βέλτιστος -η -ον: best, most excellent
ἐκκεῖμαι: to lie out in the open
παιδάριον -ου τό: little child
νήπιος -ου ὁ: infant
δέραιον -ου τό: necklace
βακτηρία -ας ἡ: staff, cane
καθικνέομαι καθίξομαι: to attack
ἀναιρέω ἀναιρήσω ἀνεῖλον: pick up
ἀπέρχομαι ἀπελεύσομαι ἀπῆλθον: to depart from, go away
οἴκαδε: to home
διαλογίζομαι διαλογιοῦμαι διελογιζόμην: to balance one’s accounts, count, calculate
παιδοτροφία -ας ἡ: childrearing
πόθεν: from where
ἀναλίσκω ἀναλώσω: to use up, spend
φροντίς φροντίδος ἡ: thought, care
ποιμαίνω: to herd, tend
ἕωθεν: at earliest dawn, morning
ἀνθρακεύς -έως ὁ: charcoal-burner
ἐκπρίω ἐκπρίσω: to saw off
στέλεχος -εος τό: trunk, stump
συνήθης -ες: acquainted, known
σκυθρωπός -ή -όν: sad, gloomy, melancholy
σύννους -ουν: in deep thought, thoughtful
περίεργος -ον: meddlesome, a busy body
ἀναιρέω ἀναιρήσω ἀνεῖλον: pick up
παιδίον -ου τό: little child, young child
εὐτυχής -ές: lucky
ἔγωγε: = ἐγώ + γε
κατατρίβω κατατρίψω κατέτριψα: to rub down, wear away
λιπαρέω: to persist, persevere
ὑπισχνέομαι ὑποσχήσομαι ὑπεσχόμην: promise
ἀπέρχομαι ἀπελεύσομαι ἀπῆλθον: to go away
εὔχομαι: to pray
καταφιλέω: to kiss
περιτυγχάνω περιτεύξομαι περιέτυχον: to come around
ἄφνω: all of a sudden
συνεκτίθημι: to set out
λῆρος -α -ον: trashy, worthless
ἀπολαμβάνω: to take from
μεταλαμβάνω μεταλήψομαι μετέλαβον: to get a share of
ἐξετάζω: to examine
βαδίζω: to walk
Ἑρμῆς -οῦ ὁ: Hermes
πέρας -ατος τό: the last thing, lastly
ἀρεστός -ή -όν: acceptable, pleasing
ἀρέσκω: to please
μετανοέω: to change one’s mind
ἐλάττομαι: to suffer (to reduce, to be on the losing end of a contest)
ἑκών ἑκοῦσα ἑκόν: willingly
κατισχύω κατισχύσω κατίσχυσα: to οverpower
240 μικρόν γ’ ἄνωθεν: “(I’ll start with) a little earlier…”
240-241 οὐ τὰ πρὸς τοῦτον μόνον/ πραχθένθ(α): “not only the things done with him (Syros)”
245 κἀκκείμενον: = καὶ ἐκκείμενον
246 ἔχον: > ἔχω, neut. acc. sing. pres. part. act. agreeing with παιδάριον and having δέραια … κόσμον as objects. τοιουτονί: = τοιοῦτον + deictic (“pointing”) iota (“this here…”)
249: SMIKRINES addresses DAOS to get him to resume his speech.
248 ἐᾷ: > ἐάω, 3rd sing. pres. indic. act.
251 ταῦτ(α): referring to the things that DAOS will talk about next.
252 ἐν νυκτὶ βουλὴν …διδοὺς: An ancient grammarian explains that this was a colloquial phrase for staying awake at night pondering things.
256 τοιουτοσί: = τοιοῦτος + deictic (“pointing”) iota (“this here…”)
258 ἐκπρίσων: > ἐκπρίω, masc. nom. sing. fut. part. act. expressing purpose
259 ἐγεγόνει: > γίγνομαι, 3rd sing. plup. indic. act.
265 ἕκαστον: refers to the each of the things that SYROS said, to which he added “οὕτω τί σοι ἀγαθὸν γένοιτο, Δᾶε.” DAOS is portraying SYROS as begging desperately.
268 τεκούσῃ: > τίκτω, dat. sing. fem. aor. part. act. “(to her) when she gave birth”
269 ταύτην: refers to Syros’ wife, who is on stage with the baby but who does not speak during the scene.
270 ἐδέου: > δέομαι, 2nd sing. impf. indic. mid. “Didn’t you beg?” ἔγωγε: a standard Greek way of answering “yes” to a question (CGCG 38.21).
274 ἐπόεις: = ἐποίεις. ἐπόουν: = ἐποίουν
276 συνεκτεθέντα: > συνεκτίθημι, neut. acc. pl. aor. part. pass.
277 οὐθέν: = οὐδέν
282 ἐξετασθῆναι: > ἐξετάζω, aor. inf. pass.
283 κοινὸς Ἑρμῆς: a colloquial expression that those who find something together should share it. SYROS will refer back to it in his speech (line 317).
286 οἴει: > οἴομαι, 2nd sing. pres. indic. mid.
289 ἀπόδος: > ἀποδίδωμι, 2nd sing. aor. imper. act.
290 ἐλαττοῦ: > ἐλάττομαι, 2nd sing. pres. imper. mid.
(nervous, but not unprepared)
(240) Well, I guess I’ll start a little earlier than all the business with him, just to make it all real understandable for you. I was tendin’ to my sheep in the woods, y’know the ones right around here, maybe thirty days ago, and I was out there alone, right? Except the sheep, of course, they-
(angry grunt from SMIKRINES)
(245) Well, anyway, I found a lil’ baby boy lying out there with necklaces
(pulling out a handful of things from a bag)
and knickknacks like this and-
And that’s what this is about!
He’s not lettin’ me talk!
If you don’t stop interrupting, I’ll-I’ll
(looking around, grabs cane and gestures threateningly with it)
I’ll whack you with my cane!
That is fair.
Well? GO ON!
I’m goin’, I’m goin’! (250) So, I picked him up
(mimes picking up baby, rocking it)
and I took him home, see I was plannin’ on raisin’ him myself ‘cuz it seemed like the best plan at the time, but that night, that thing that happens to ev’rybody, y’know when you think to yourself “why on earth am I doin’ this? all this hassle for what? and what about the money?” (255) so it went like that all night long! The next mornin’ while I was out herdin’, THIS guy
(points to SYROS)
marches on up – he’s a charcoal-burner, y’know, so he was coming to saw some logs – and I knew a little about him before hand, so we were chattin’ away and (260) he saw how sad I was
“Why so thoughtful, Daos?” he says,
(back to being DAOS)
“Why?” I say, “Because I’m in trouble!” and I tell him the whole damn thing, how I found the lil’ baby, how I picked him up – but then! Straightaway, before I could even get it all out, he BEGGED me
(drops to his knees, imitating SYROS)
“Ohhhh bless you, Daos!” (265)
(breaking his imitation)
he said it each time
“Give the child to me! You’re in luck, you’ll be free! For I have a wife”
he says “but oh! alas! the child she gave birth to died!” He meant that woman there
(pointing her out)
who has the baby now. (270) Didn’t you beg?
(before SYROS can explain)
(270) He wasted the whole day pleadin’, I was held up by all his persistin’ and persuadin’, so I gave in and he went off blabberin’ all his thank you’s and bless you’s and you won’t believe it – when he took the kid he even kissed my hands! Didn’t ya?
Then he left! (275) But now he’s back to bother me and he brought his wife. All of a sudden the little thingamabobs – the trinkets set out with the baby, they were nothing, small, trashy – he says he deserves to take ‘em and I deserve
“to suffer terrible things” because I won’t give ‘em up. (280) Well, I think he needs t’ be grateful for the part of it he did get! I don’t need t’be interrogated just ‘cuz I didn’t give him all of it! If he’d a’been out there walking with me and found ‘em with me – like a finders-keepers kinda thing – we’d’ve split it, (285) but I was all alone out there!
(turning to SYROS)
You weren’t even there! You think you deserve to get all of it and I’ll just walk away with nothing! For the last time, Igave you something that was mine! If you want it, keep it, but if ya don’t, give it back. (290) Don’t try to pull one over on me and don’t go feelin’ sorry for yourself! It’s not right for you to have all of it – not when you got some from me willingly and some by strong armin’ me!
(taking a deep breath)
There, I’ve said my piece.