Accius, Tragedies

LCL 314: 536-537

Go To Section
Go To Section



Nonius, 337, 17: ‘Lautum’ etiam inquinatum vel maculatum . . . —

Chorus vulnere taetro deformatum suo sibi lautum sanguine tepido.


When the Greeks landed in Mysia by mistake for the land of Troy, Telephus, heir to the throne of Mysia, repulsed them, but was wounded by Achilles’ spear. The Greeks, after their retirement, were broken up by a storm, but reassembled at Argos and made ready to set off once more for Troy. Meanwhile Telephus, seeking a cure for his wound, received from Delphi the answer: ‘He ho wounded shall cure.’ He found that Achilles was at Argos, went to that city, and was cured by rust on Achilles’ spear. He then went to Troy with the Greeks.


Priscianus, ap. G.L., III, 423, 35: Nec solum comici huiuscemodi sunt usi iambis, sed etiam tragici vetustissimi . . . Accius . . . (424, 24) in Telepho—

quantam Tyndareo gnata et Menelai domus molem excitarit belli pastorque Ilius.


Nonius, 503, 16: Ab eo quod est ‘fervit’ breviato accentu fervere facit, ut spernit, spernere . . . —

aere atque ferro fervere atque insignibus florere.

  • 616fervere Bentin. fervet cdd. atque insignibus W inque insignibus Bothe fervere et signis florere insignibus Mr. igni insignibus cdd. igni seclud. Ribb.



The punishment completed:

Nonius: ‘Lautum’ (bathed, washed) even means befouled or stained . . .—


misshapen by hideous wounding, bathed in his own warm blood.


Accius may have followed Euripides’ Τήλεφος; but, in Accius, Telephus is, according to some, in reality, and not by pretence, a beggar, and has been in fact driven from his kingdom. Some think his speeches are not subtle and sophistic like those of Telephus in Euripides, and that the model may therefore be Aeschylus. But it will be clear that, even in Accius, Telephus is keeping his true state secret from the Greeks. Cf. R., 344 ff. Scene: Argos.


From the prologue. The Greek army preparing:

Priscianus: And not only writers of comedies used iambics of this kind, but also the oldest tragic writers. . . . Accius . . . in Telephus

How mighty is the moil of war stirred up By Tyndareus’s daughter, by the house Of Menelaus, by an llian herdsman.


Nonius: From the verb ‘fervit’ is formed an infinitive ‘fervĕre,’ with a short vowel, like ‘spernere’ from ‘spernit’ . . .—

Glowing with bronze and iron and beflowered With emblems.

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.accius-tragedies.1936