Ian Rutherford has lately been kind enough to allow me an early view of a detailed study
of the paean he has been preparing, in which he has discussed the difficult problems of the
Fourth Paean in detail. And now Lutz Käppel has published a learned study of the same
genre (Paian: Studien zur Geschichte einer Gattung (Berlin, 1992), which includes, in its
third chapter (p. 87f.), the most detailed commentary on the Fourth Paean so far published.
Written for the Ceans to perform at Delos, this poem tells how Euxantios, son of Minos by
the Cean princess Dexithea, refused to abandon his rocky native island for the sake of a
kingdom in his father's much greater island, Crete. The work of Rutherford and Käppel has
stimulated me into making an attempt to solve two major cruces which have puzzled
everyone who has had to do with this poem, ever since Grenfell and Hunt in 1908 published
Part V of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri and with it P.Oxy. 841, which contains almost all that we
possess of it.
Addressing his own mind, i.e. himself, Euxantios tells it to leave alone the cypress, and
to leave alone something else which I will not at this point try to translate. Then he says that
to him has been given a small.
.. - then follow corrupt words - but that he has no share in
mourning or in revolutions:
¶a, frÆn, kupãri!-
!on, ¶a d¢ nomÚn peridãion.
§mo‹ dÉ Ùl¤gon d°dotai ya[
oÈ peny°vn dÉ ¶laxon, <oÈ> !ta!¤vn
S ]dotai ya`[
et Plutarcho (vid. infra) suppl. Blass et edd.pr. Plutarchus, De exilio
œi dÉ ¶je!tin eF! mikrån épobãnti n∞!on oÈ mikr«n éphllãxyai kak«n,
êyliÒ! §!ti mØ pro!lal«n •aut«i tå Pindarikã mhdÉ §pãidvn pollãki!
§lafrån kupãri!!on fil°ein, §çn d¢ nomÒn KrÆta! perida¤vn. §mo‹ dÉ Ùl¤gon m¢n
d°dotai, ˜yen êdru!, peny°vn dÉ oÈk ¶laxon !ta!¤vn oÈd¢ pro!tagmãtvn
≤gemonik«n oÈdÉ Ípourgi«n §n politika›! xre¤ai! ka‹ leitourgi«n du!paraitÆtvn.
- the latter word is Hermann's correction of Plutarch's
was taken by the first editors to mean 'the region around Mount Ida'. Grenfell and Hunt
were rebuked by Housman, Cl.Rev. 22 (1908) 10 = Classical Papers (1972) II 766 for not
knowing that the iota of the word
was long, and Wilamowitz, Pindaros (1922), 475
raised the same objection, taking
to mean 'ein Revier zwischen Feinden'.
Käppel, op.cit., p.124, n.127 rightly objects that the Cretans were not enemies, but when he
defends the view of the first editors, quoting as a parallel the variable quantity of the first
, he does not convince. The existence of the common noun