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The Works and Days is a didactic poem of some lines written by the ancient Greek poet Hesiod around BC. At its center, the Works and Days is a. 1 Muses of Pieria, you who make glory [kleos] with your songs,. 2 come and tell of Zeus, making a song about your father,. 3 on account of whom there are.
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Beggar envies beggar, singer envies singer. And if you are traveling [at nighttime], do not urinate either on the road or off the road, and do not get naked. For if you say something bad, soon you will hear something spoken about you that is even worse. But when the gods completed this deception of sheer doom, against which there is no remedy,. And I expect that you. And in this context it is argued that what was left in the jar was not Hope as we know it, but the "expectation of ills" so that Man would be unpleasantly surprised by ills that befell him instead of expecting them. But the man who seizes something [instead of having it as a gift], yielding to dishonorableness [ anaideia ],.
This text is part of: Greek and Roman Materials. Search the Perseus Catalog for: Current location in this text. Here we see the localized perspective. Here we see the pan-Hellenic perspective. One of them promotes evil war and strife, 15 the wretched one! As for the other one, she was the first of the two to be born of dark Night. This Eris is good for mortals.
Beggar envies beggar, singer envies singer. Well, you will not be getting a second chance 35 to do what you are now doing. For that reason he [Zeus] devised plans that were to be baneful for humankind. Angered at him, Zeus, the cloud-gatherer, spoke: But a great pain awaits both you and future mankind. Zeus spoke, and the gods obeyed the Lord Son of Kronos. Athena dressed her and tied her girdle, adorning her. Pallas Athena placed on her skin every manner of ornament [ kosmos ]. She devised baneful anxieties for humankind.
It did not fly out. Full is the earth of evils, full is the sea. Diseases for humans are a day-to-day thing.
Now, if you are so disposed, I shall sum up for you another thing I have to say. I shall do it well, and with expertise, and you should put it in your thoughts. In the very beginning, a Golden Generation of shining-faced humans was made by the immortals who abide in Olympian homes.
They were in the time of Kronos, when he was king over the sky. Their feet and hands did not change, and they had good times [verb terpesthai ] at feasts [ thaliai ], exempt from all evils. They exist because of the Will of Zeus. Death still took them, terrifying as they were, yes, black Death took them, and they left behind them the bright light of the Sun. They will be worn down, and the gods will give harsh cares.
Still, despite all this, even they will have some good mixed in with the bad. Nor will a brother be philos , as he had been before. They will reproach their parents, shouting at them with harsh words. And there will be nothing to ward off evil. Now I will tell an ainos to kings, discerning as they presumably are.
But he spoke to her from his position of superior power: You will go wherever I take you, singer [poet] that you are. I can do what I wish with you: For them the earth bears much life-sustenance. Their wooly sheep are laden with fleeces.
And the people waste away. Their women do not give birth, and their households are depleted— all on account of the plans of Zeus the Olympian. And put crooked dikai out of your mind completely. A bad plan is the worst plan for the one who planned it. The Eye of Zeus sees all and takes note of all in his noos.
I call on you to put these things in your mind. The future lineage of such a man will be left darkened over. To be evil is an easy choice, and there are many ways to do it. The way of evil is smooth and accessible. Hunger is the natural companion of the utterly idle man. It is from working that men get many sheep and wealth. And it is by working that a man becomes more philos than other men to the immortals and to mortals. They all hate the idle. Brazenness goes with being wealthy.
This way, you will be buying the arable land of others, not the other way around. The man who is most important to invite is the one who lives nearest to you. For if some misfortune happens in any given place, the neighbors come over in haste, ungirt, but the in-laws come girt. A bad neighbor is as much a pain as a good one is a great boon.
You will never lose as much as an ox if you have a good neighbor. Have the grain measured out properly when you borrow from a neighbor, and pay it back properly in the same measure or even better, if you can. This way, when you are in need, you can find something to rely on. Give to the one who would give to you, and do not give to the one who would not. But the man who seizes something [instead of having it as a gift], yielding to dishonorableness [ anaideia ], no matter how small it is, it will freeze over the heart [of the person who is being robbed].
Whatever is already stored up at home will not take care of a man. Thrift is dreadful when you reach the bottom. Men have been undone both by being trusting and by not being so. It is the best thing to have an only child to maintain the ancestral household. That is the way that wealth can increase in the house. This is the way it is done on the plains. And for when you reap. This way, you will avoid being in need in the future, having to go begging to the households of others—and accomplishing nothing. For I can easily imagine that you could succeed twice, or maybe even three times.
Attention to your work will make the yield increase. That is the way that is fitting. It is better this way. This way, if you break the one, you have the other to hitch up to your oxen. They will be the best to do work with. They will not get into a fight with each other right in the middle of plowing, breaking the plow and making futile all the work done up to then. Let the oxen be driven by a sturdy man of forty years. For his meal, let him eat a loaf scored into eight portions and broken into four.
A younger man would let his attention flutter towards his peers. Then it is that you should give fodder to the horned oxen in their stalls. For it is easy to say: Get to work early, so that your fields will yield produce in plenty. Sow on fallow land when it is still loose [from the rain].
Fallow land can be a talisman, warding off disaster. So also with the grapes: You will be covered with dust, an unhappy man. It is not a real hope that cares for a man who is in need, as he sits around in a lounge while he has no adequate means. Point out to your servants, even in the middle of the summer: And the earth and the forest roar.
She has not yet learned the works of golden Aphrodite. But it shines more tardily for all the Hellenes. Then it is that the creatures of the forest, horned and unhorned alike, gnash their teeth pitifully as they flee through the woods of the glens.
For all of them there is one thing in their phrenes: You must weave thick woof on a thin warp. Wear this, and the hairs will not bristle, standing on end all over your body. Make them snug with felt on the inside. This way, you will have on your back something to keep off the rain. This way, your ears will not get wet. For the dawn is cold when the wind Boreas swoops down. Avoid it, for this is the month that is most harsh. It is wintry, harsh for livestock and harsh for men.
She comes back to the light for humankind, as springtime begins anew. Avoid sitting down in shady places and sleeping till dawn in the season of harvesting, when the sun scorches the skin. This way, you will have sufficient life-sustenance. Dawn gets you started on your journey, and it gets you started on your work.
A servant-woman with a little calf under her [a child to nurse] is a bad thing. Take good care of the sharp-toothed dog. Do not begrudge him his food. Show them to the sun ten days and ten nights. At this time you must not have ships sailing the wine-colored sea. Haul up your ship on dry land and pack it with stones all over, which will stand up to the power of the winds blowing their dampness. Hang up the well-made steering-oar over the smoke [of the fireplace].
And he settled down near Helikon, in a settlement afflicted with human woes, Ascra by name. That goes especially for navigation. Praise the small ship, but put your cargo into a big one. The greater the cargo, the more profit [ kerdos ] you can pile on top of profit [ kerdos ] — provided the winds hold back their evil [ kakai ] blasts.
It was there that I, heading for the funeral games of warlike Amphidamas, crossed over to Khalkis. For the fulfillment of all things, both good and bad, is in their hands. Haul your ship down to the pontos and put in all your cargo. Then you are ready do embark upon the sea. This, then, is the time of navigation in the spring. And yet, even these things are done by men, in their acts of ignorance in matters of noos. It is a fearful thing to die among the waves. Do not put all your means of livelihood inside hollow ships. Take care to keep things moderate. Timing [ kairos ] is best in all things.
This is a seasonal marriage. Marry a virgin, so that you may teach her the ways of affection. The man, no matter how strong he may be, is burned out by the fire of such a woman. Guard against the anger of the blessed immortals. Do not make a comrade equal to a brother. But if you do, you should not beat him to it by hurting him first. And do not lie just to please your tongue. It [the poverty] is sent by the blessed immortals.
The best treasure for mortals is a tongue that is sparing. Do not pour a libation of bright-colored wine to Zeus after dawn with unwashed hands. Nor should you do so to any other immortal. Otherwise, they will not heed your prayers but will spit them back. Do not stand upright, with your face turned toward the sun, when you urinate. And if you are traveling [at nighttime], do not urinate either on the road or off the road, and do not get naked.
The nights belong to the blessed ones [the gods]. The godly person, who knows what is sensible, does it squatting.
Or else, he goes to the wall of an enclosed court. But do so after a banquet of the gods. Do not put the wine-pouring vessel on top of the wine-mixing vessel when people are drinking. Otherwise, a cawing crow may roost on it and make a croaking sound. It makes a man unmanly. Nor let a twelve-month-old boy do so. For here too a similar thing happens. Avoid it at all costs. And do not relieve yourself into them.
It is not a very good thing to do that. For ominous talk is a bad thing. Do this for your servants. But the twelfth is much better than the eleventh. On that day a woman should set up her loom and get on with her work. But it is the best day for getting your plants bedded in. Also for making an enclosure for the sheep. Do the same with the work-enduring asses on the twelfth.
The tenth is favorable for a boy to be born; for a girl, it is the fourth of the mid-month. They are harsh and ominous. On the fourth, begin to build sleek ships. But the first ninth is the most painless for humans. It is never a completely bad day.
As evening approaches, it is less good. These, then, are the days, a great blessing for earth-bound men. Notes [ back ] 1. The CHS is dedicated to the reassertion of the humanism of the ancient world, centering on Hellenic civilization in its widest sense. Today, it stands as a premier research facility, cultivating a repository of materials that attracts scholars, researchers, and students from all over the world Please enter the Email address that you used to register for CHS. We will send you an email with a link that you may use to reset your password. One of them promotes evil war and strife,.
No mortal loves this one, but, by necessity,. And Zeus, seated on high, abiding in the aether, made her to be. She rouses even the resourceless person to work. For when one man who needs work looks at another man. Potter envies potter, carpenter envies carpenter. Well, you will not be getting a second chance. Earlier, we divided up our inheritance, and then you seized and took away. Right away, you could store your steering-oar over the fireplace,. To make up for the fire, I will give them an evil thing, in which they may all.
Thus spoke the father of men and gods, and he laughed out loud. Then he ordered Hephaistos, renowned all over, to shape. And he ordered Athena. And he ordered Aphrodite to shed golden charm over her head;. And he ordered Hermes, the messenger and Argos-killer,. Right away the famed Lame One shaped out of the clay of the Earth. And within her breast the messenger and Argos-killer fashioned. And the messenger of the gods.
Father Zeus sent the famed Argos-killer to Epimetheus,. Epic narrative Greek religion In Greek mythology: The works of Hesiod: Theogony and Works and Days In Greek mythology: Myths of the ages of the world history of astronomy In astronomy: Help us improve this article! Contact our editors with your feedback.
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