Here is the quote:

ἐκαλεῖτο δέ τις καὶ βαλανωτὴ φιάλη, ἧς τῷ πυθμένι χρυσοῖ ὑπέκειντο ἀστράγαλοι. Σῆμος δ᾽ ἐν Δήλῳ ἀνακεῖσθαί φησι χαλκοῦν φοίνικα, Ναξίων ἀνάθημα, καὶ καρυωτὰς φιάλας χρυσᾶς. Ἀναξανδρίδης δὲ φιάλας Ἄρεος καλεῖ τὰ ποτήρια ταῦτα. Αἰολεῖς δὲ τὴν φιάλην ἀράκην καλοῦσι

The text is straight off Greek Wikisource. It's from book XI of the Deipnosophists. Translation attempt:

Some φίαλαι were also called acorn-adorned (βαλανωτή), when golden ἀστράγαλοι lay under their bottoms. Semos says a bronze phoenix was laid up in Delos, a votive offering to the Naxians, and golden καρυωτὰς(??) φίαλαι. Anaxandrides calls those drinking-cups Ares's φίαλαι. The Aeolians call φίαλαι ἀράκαι

Now, firstly, let me sort out the untranslated words:

  • φίαλαι (Aeolic accent, maybe out of place, but it's irrelevant) seems to be some sort of boiling vessel (bowl or saucepan) or a saucer; I guess it can also mean "goblet" or the likes, as an evolution of sense one due to some shape analogy;
  • ἀστράγαλοι (ditto for Aeolic accent) means knucklebone (among other senses), and may be some sort of decoration shaped somewhat like a knucklebone;
  • καρυωτὰς is not on Perseus, and I have no access to my bigger paper dictionary now, so it's somewhat mysterious…

Thus here is question 1:

What does καρυωτὰς mean? I assume its the femm.acc.pl. of καρυωτός, or perhaps καρυωτής, but I can find neither on Perseus…

The Wikisource text gives the penultimate word as ἀράκην, but Lobel-Page, quoting it in the critical note for fr. 192 of Sappho, gives ἄρακιν. So:

What did the tradition have, and if ἀράκην why did Lobel-Page change it, and if ἄρακιν where does ἀράκην (reported in LSJ btw) come from?

Self-ironic PS: What? A non-Sappho MickG question, and still about Greek? That's new! :)


Per @TKR's comments, I hereby:

  1. Change the translation of ἀνάθημα above from curse to votive offering;
  2. Note that Perseus has καρυωτός as date-palm or, when describing φίαλαι, as meaning nut-bossed, i.e. with nut-shaped bosses; therefore, Q1 is solved;
  3. Note that it seems the manuscripts have ἀρακίν, making Lobel-Page's form the simple Aeolicization of the tradition (via application of barytonesis); therefore, Q2 gets rewritten as:

Why have editors changed ἀρακίν to ἀράκην when simple Aeolicization yields ἄρακιν and the given form isn't even Aeolic since, AFAIK, an Aeolic form would be ἀράκαν?

  • 1
    ἀνάθημα in this context isn't a curse, but a dedication or votive offering. On καρυωτὰς, see: perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/…
    – TKR
    Oct 2, 2018 at 23:48
  • 1
    At perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/… LSJ says of the Athenaeus quote "ἀρακίν cod." -- i.e. it looks like the MS tradition has that spelling, but editors have emended it to ἀράκην.
    – TKR
    Oct 2, 2018 at 23:56
  • On Q2.b: in Attic the accusative of ἀρακίς would be ἀρακίδα, not ἀρακίν. I don't know enough about Aeolic to know whether it retains the distinction between the ἀσπίς, ἀσπίδος type and the χάρις, χάριτος type, which in other dialects corresponds to an accent difference.
    – TKR
    Oct 3, 2018 at 16:23
  • I've posted a question on that topic: latin.stackexchange.com/questions/7253/…
    – TKR
    Oct 3, 2018 at 16:56
  • 1
    @TKR FWIW Edmonds reconstructs verse 3 of the Gongyla poem as containing khárin, and then LP 155 (Polyanactida paida khairen, the number may be misremembered) appears to contain Pōlyanáktidă, though Bergk amends it to Polyanaktídāo.
    – MickG
    Oct 3, 2018 at 17:17

1 Answer 1


see the screenshots below from Kaibel 1890, v.3 (Teubner):

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  • So we don't know, but probably not arákēn, rather árakin or arakída. What does "at a." stand for in the Hesiod part?
    – MickG
    Oct 6, 2018 at 8:04
  • Just zoomed in and it's "et s.". What does s. stand for?
    – MickG
    Oct 6, 2018 at 8:05
  • 2
    @MickG. Probably "sub" in the sense "in his entry for the word X."
    – fdb
    Oct 7, 2018 at 11:33
  • 2
    @fdb Oh well, I thought Hes. was for Hesiod, but now I guess it's for Hesychius :).
    – MickG
    Oct 7, 2018 at 11:42

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