aleator classicus

Reading at Random in Classical Literature

Polyaenus, Stratagems 1.2

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Polyaenus collects the clever military stratagems of both historical and mythological figures. Here’s Pan:

Διονύσου στρατηγὸς ἦν Πάν· οὗτος πρῶτος τάξιν εὗρεν, φάλαγγα ὠνόμασε, κέρας ἔταξε δεξιὸν καὶ λαιόν. ταύτῃ τοι ἄρα κερασφόρον τὸν Πᾶνα δημιουργοῦσιν· ἀλλὰ δὴ καὶ πρῶτος οὗτος πολεμίοις φόβον ἐνέβαλε σοφίᾳ καὶ τέχνῃ.

Pan was Dionysus’ general. He was the first to discover the battle order, which he called the phalanx, and ordered its right and left horns [i.e. ‘wings’]. It is for this reason that artists represent Pan with horns. He was also the first to cause fear in the enemy by means of cunning and artifice.

Written by aleatorclassicus

February 16, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Posted in Polyaenus

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