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Posted - 06 Nov 2007 :  11:25:02  

I need help finding a complete quote that I believe is out of Herodotus' "The Histories." All I know of the quote is "the wooden walls alone shall not fail you." It should be in that part of the story where the Athenians are debating what to do about the approaching Persian hordes. It may also be referred to as the Oracle of Apollo. Any help is much appreciated.



615 Posts

Posted - 06 Nov 2007 :  20:38:26  



Check Herodotus' Histories, Book 7, ch. 141, where the oracle appears:

Pallas has not been able to soften the lord of Olympus,
Though she has often prayed him, and urged him with excellent counsel.
Yet once more I address thee in words than adamant firmer.
When the foe shall have taken whatever the limit of Cecrops
Holds within it, and all which divine Cithaeron, shelters,
Then far-seeing Jove grants this to the prayers of Athene;
Safe shall the wooden wall continue for thee and thy children.
Wait not the tramp of the horse, nor the footmen mightily moving
Over the land, but turn your hack to the foe, and retire ye.
Yet shall a day arrive when ye shall meet him in battle.
Holy Salamis, thou shalt destroy the offspring of women,
When men scatter the seed, or when they gather the harvest.

In Greek:

Οὐ δύναται Παλλὰς Δί΄ Ὀλύμπιον ἐξιλάσασθαι͵ λισσομένη πολλοῖσι λόγοις καὶ μήτιδι πυκνῇ· σοὶ δὲ τόδ΄ αὖτις ἔπος ἐρέω͵ ἀδάμαντι πελάσσας. Τῶν ἄλλων γὰρ ἁλισκομένων ὅσα Κέκροπος οὖρος ἐντὸς ἔχει κευθμών τε Κιθαιρῶνος ζαθέοιο͵ τεῖχος Τριτογενεῖ ξύλινον διδοῖ εὐρύοπα Ζεὺς μοῦνον ἀπόρθητον τελέθειν͵ τὸ σὲ τέκνα τ΄ ὀνήσει. Μηδὲ σύ γ΄ ἱπποσύνην τε μένειν καὶ πεζὸν ἰόντα πολλὸν ἀπ΄ ἠπείρου στρατὸν ἥσυχος͵ ἀλλ΄ ὑποχωρεῖν νῶτον ἐπιστρέψας· ἔτι τοί ποτε κἀντίος ἔσσῃ. Ὦ θείη Σαλαμίς͵ ἀπολεῖς δὲ σὺ τέκνα γυναικῶν ἤ που σκιδναμένης Δημήτερος ἢ συνιούσης.

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