Ibycus, Testimonia

LCL 476: 208-209

Go To Section
Go To Section

Greek Lyric


Testimonia Vitae Atque Artis

1 Sud. I 80 (ii 607 Adler)

Ἴβυκος, Φυτίου, οἱ δὲ Πολυζήλου τοῦ Μεσσηνίου ἱστοριογράφου, οἱ δὲ Κέρδαντος· γένει Ῥηγῖνος. ἐνθένδε εἰς Σάμον ἦλθεν, ὅτε αὐτῆς ἦρχεν ὁ Πολυκράτους (Schmid: -κράτης codd.) τοῦ τυράννου πατήρ. χρόνος δὲ οὗτος ὁ ἐπὶ Κροίσου, ὀλυμπιὰς νδ΄. γέγονε δὲ ἐρωτομανέστατος περὶ μειράκια, καὶ πρῶτος εὗρε τὴν καλουμένην σαμβύκην· εἶδος δέ ἐστι κιθάρας τριγώνου. ἔστι δὲ αὐτοῦ τὰ βιβλία ζ΄ τῇ Δωρίδι διαλέκτῳ. συλληφθεὶς δὲ ὑπὸ λῃστῶν ἐπὶ ἐρημίας ἔφη κἂν τὰς γεράνους, ἃς ἔτυχεν ὑπερίπτασθαι, ἐκδίκους γενέσθαι. καὶ αὐτὸς μὲν ἀνῃρέθη. μετὰ δὲ ταῦτα τῶν λῃστῶν εἷς ἐν τῇ πόλει θεασάμενος γεράνους ἔφη· ἴδε, αἱ Ἰβύκου ἔκδικοι. ἀκούσαντος δέ τινος καὶ ἐπεξελθόντος τῷ εἰρημένῳ, τό τε γεγονὸς ὡμολογήθη καὶ δίκας ἔδωκαν





1 Suda1

Ibycus: son of Phytius2; but some say son of the historian3 Polyzelus of Messana, others son of Cerdas4; of Rhegium5 by birth. From there he went to Samos when it was ruled by the father6 of the tyrant Polycrates. This was in the time of Croesus, in the 54th Olympiad (564/560 b.c.).7 He was completely crazed with love for boys,8 and he was the inventor of the so-called sambyke,9 a kind of triangular cithara. His works are in seven books10 in the Doric dialect.11 Captured by bandits in a deserted place he declared that the cranes which happened to be flying overhead would be his avengers; he was murdered, but afterwards one of the bandits saw some cranes in the city and exclaimed, ‘Look, the avengers of Ibycus!’ Someone overheard and followed up his words: the crime was confessed and the

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.ibycus-testimonia.1991