In this Italian anthology, LP 21 l. 2 (the first line where the papyrus has letters) is read as containing επαβολησ (and perhaps vestigia around it). The first word in the translation is "esperta", which I know not to match the following line's ολοφυν, known to mean "lament" from a Hesychius gloss. So it is l. 2 that must give us "esperta". How though? No Greek word for that on Woodhouse even comes close to επαβολησ. The footnotes pointed me to the Hesychius gloss, but "esperta" has no footnote, so it would seem I'm missing something obvious. Is it so? Otherwise, where is the "esperta" in our επαβολησ?

2 Answers 2


"I've got this", so then, by LSJ

ἐπήβολ-ος (Aeol. ἐπάβ- dub. in Sapph. Supp. 10.2), ον,

having reached, achieved, or gained a thing, c. gen., οὐ νηὸς ἐ. οὐδʼ ἐρετάων γίγνομαι Od. 2.319; τούτων ἐ. Hdt. 9.94; ἱματίου ἐ. γενέσθαι PSI 4.418.22 (iii B.C.); τούτων τῶν θεῶν ἐ. in possession of . ., Hdt. 8.111; τερπνῆς . . τῆσδʼ ἐ. νόσου A. Ag. 542; ἐ. φρενῶν, Lat. compos mentis, Id. Pr. 444, S. Ant. 492; ἐπιστήμης, παιδείας ἐ., Pl. Euthd. 289b, Lg. 724b, cf. Hp. Lex 2; μήτε πόλεως μήτε πολιτείας Hyp. Fr. 78; μεγάλων καὶ καλῶν Arist. EN 1101a13; νόος οἰκωφελίας αἷσιν ἐπάβολος whose mind is skilled in housewifery, Theoc. 28.2; τῶν ὄντων ἐ. γενόμενος having become acquainted with the true facts, Hld. 10.20: c. inf., most dexterous at . ., κλέψαι -ώτατος Plu. Arat. 10.

Bailly 2020: qui atteint le but, dʼoù : 1 qui parvient à, qui obtient, qui possède, gén. Od. 2, 319, etc. ; en prose, ἐπήβολος ἐπιστήμης, Plat. Euthyd. 289 b, ou παιδείας, Plat. Leg. 724 b, qui possède du savoir, de lʼinstruction ; ἐπ. φρενῶν, Eschl. Pr. 444 ; Soph. Ant. 492, maître de sa raison ; ἐπήβολος avec lʼinf. qui parvient à faire, apte à faire qqe ch. Plut. Arat. 10 || 2 qui convient à, dat. Thcr. Idyl. 28, 2, etc. ||


One possibility is Hesychius again, more specifically:

<ἐπάβολος>· ἐπιτυχών

So the word would mean more like "successful" than "expert", but maybe as a stretch… though seriously, if that is how this came about, the stretch is totally unwarranted in that tatter.

Anyways, at that point one might supplement ἐπαβόλ' ἦσ[θα. It must needs be ἐπαβόλ'/ἐπάβολ', for Aeolic wouldn't give ἐπαβόλη in the feminine. I'd guess it's ἐπαβόλα, given the feminine singular in the translation.

Or perhaps:

<ἐπήβολος>· *ἔμπειρος AS ἐπιστάτης. δεσπότης A. μέτοχος. ἐπιβολὴν ἔχων. δεσπόζων (β 319)

Thus "experienced, chief/governor, master, member, having the imposition(?), being lord", the first meaning being taken for a hypothised Aeolic form ἐπάβολος. The first sense seems to match LSJ's sense "most dexterous at".

  • 2
    ὁ ἐπιτυχών more usually means "random person, anyone you happen to meet".
    – TKR
    Sep 15, 2019 at 1:26
  • @TKR What probably happened there is I looked the word up on Perseus, opened LSJ for epitygkhánø, and looked for a sense matching "expert", landing on "to be lucky, successful at a thing".
    – MickG
    Sep 15, 2019 at 7:48
  • Loeb's might think otherwise : (in possession of?), so, then, μέτοχος. Oct 15, 2019 at 18:09

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