Sunday, November 30, 2008

Xennias :Makedonizon tin phone *

by Professor Elias Kapetanopoulos

A papyrus fragment (PSIXII (2) 1284), which may be from Arrian's τά μετά Άλέξανδρον (now lost), preserves the phrase Ξεννίας άνήρ μακεδονίζων τη φ[ω]νή. The fragment's historical setting has been identified with the conflict between Eumenes and Neoptolemos of 320 (321/20) B.C.[1] Eumenes, as reported in the fragment, sent for a second time (αύθις) Xennias άνήρ μακεδονίζων τη φωνή to address the Makedones, or the phalanx of Makedones, arrayed against him.

From the phrase μακεδονίζων τη φωνή and its context, A. B. Bosworth inferred that "... whatever its etymological roots, Macedonian was regarded in antiquity as a language separate from and alien to Greek" [2].

E. Badian, in his essay "Greeks and Macedonians"[3], dwelled on the theme of a separate "Makedonian language" and drew the inference that "...Xennias* name at once shows him to be a Macedonian". E. Badian's inference was based apparently on the name's double vv [4], reinforced at the same time by the phrase άνήρ μακε­δονίζων τη φωνη [5]. However, the name Xennias is almost exclusively attested outside a Makedo­nian context (below).

E. Badian also inferred from PSI XII (2) 1284 that Eumenes could not communicate with his Makedones, because he did not speak Makedonian or his (Eumene's) Greek would not have been understood by the phalanx of Makedones. This, then, would explain why Xennias άνήρ μακεδονίζων τη φωνή was sent to address the opposing Makedones. However, the writer has read the sources where Eumenes figures and noticed no language problem(s) between Eumenes and his Makedones. In fact the opposite is true, as there was excellent language communication between Eumenes and his Makedones. One example of this is Eumenes' speech which moved το άλλο πλήθος, i.e. the Makedonian phalanx, as contrasted to the άργυράσπιδες, to άχθος and κλαυθμός [6]. This is after he was seized and tied. Therefore, a language factor cannot, and should not, be introduced into Eumenes' relations with his Makedones[7].

As Plutarch tells us, once the Makedones greeted Eumenes, carried at the time on a litter, μακεδονιστί τή φωνή: άσπασάμενοι μακεδονιστί τή φωνή τάς τε ασπίδας άνείλοντο καί ταϊς σαρίσαις έπιδουπήσαντες ήλάλαξαν, ... (Eum. XIV. 5). Context shows that this greeting was spontaneous and complimentary at the same time[8], a result of the warmth that the troops (Makedones) felt toward Eumenes, their commander, whom they urged on to fight[9]. Plutarch does not say what the troops said μακεδονιστί τή φωνή[10], and accordingly it is impossible to infer anything. The same uncertainty, as far as what is meant by μακεδονιστί, is also observed when Plutarch states that some of the Ptolemies gave up τό μακεδονίζειν[11].

However, in the Kleitos affair, Plutarch defines Alexander's άνεβόα μακεδονιστί as a σύμβολον θορύβου μεγά­λου[12]. As R. A. Crossland has noted[13], such an expression as μακεδονιστί, or even μακεδονί­ζειν, is very imprecise in determining whether it is meant in the Makedonian fashion, Makedo­nian dialect, or even in a "Makedonian language"[14] which the existing evidence does not support. In the Eumenes instance φωνή accompanies μακεδονιστί, but compare τή φωνή λέγειν Άττικιστί (Άττικώς) in Demosthenes, υπέρ Μεγαλοπολιτών 2 [15].

Does this phrase imply a separate, non-Greek, Attic language?

The inscriptions from Makedon show that the entire area was Hellenic, although one could argue that this is the result of Hellenization[16]. However, it remains to be shown that this is so, and the arguments must rest upon indisputable evidence which does not exist. Moreover, it should be borne in mind that Herodotos, Thoukydides and Xenophon, for example, do not hint in any way to a distinct "Makedonian language" in their passages which deal with the Makedones17; and this is also true of Isokrates and Demosthenes[18].

Recent archaeological discoveries testify to the close affinity of Makedon and the rest of Hellas[19], and literary evidence of about 700 B.C. identified the Makedones with the Greek world, as witnessed by Hesiod's fragment which makes Makedon a brother of Magnes, eponyms of the Makedones and Magnetes respectively[20]. The recognition of the Makedones as Greeks is also borne out by the Persians who called the Makedones (YAUNA TAKABARA)[21], and at Plataia they arrayed the Makedones, together with the inhabitants about Thessaly, against the Athen­ians[22], an act that truly presaged the later struggles between the Athenians and the Makedones. Moreover, the fact that Alexander I sent Makedones to safeguard the Boiotian cities[23] indicates that the Makedones, or at least these Makedones, spoke Greek, and perhaps of the Boiotian variety[24]. As for Alexander I himself, his speech before the Athenians[25] and the Lakedaimonia comment [26] are good testimony of his Greek. His participation in the Olympics was at first contested (ου βαρβάρων άγωνιστέων) by his contenders, but as an Argive he competed in the στάδιον and apparently won, or at least ran an equal race[27]. Herodotos identifies, it seems, the Makedones as Hellenes in V.22, for Έλληνας δέ είναι τούτους τούς από Περδίκκεω γεγονότας, κατά περ αυτοί λέγουσι, αυτός τε ούτω τυγχάνω επισταμένος και δή και εν τοΐσι δπισθε λό-γοισι άποδέξω ώς εισι Έλληνες[28], ..., must also refer to the Makedones involved in the incident therein, and not only to Alexander I and Amyntas[29].

As indicated elsewhere[30], Thoukydides does not explicitly recognize the Makedones as Hel­lenes, but at the same time he does not include them among the βάρβαροι. In II.80.7, Thou­kydides reports έπεμψε δέ και Περδίκκας κρύφα των Αθηναίων χιλίους Μακεδόνων, οϊ ύστερον ήλθον. From the comment οϊ ύστερον ήλθον, it is clear that the whole remark is a footnote to the preceding events and in no way places the Makedones on the same footing with the Chaones and others[31]. In Perdikkas' and Brasidas' expedition against Arrhabaios of Lynke-stis (IV. 124.1), Thoukydides writes ίππής δ'οί πάντες ήκολούθουν Μακεδόνων ξύν Χαλκιδεΰ-σιν ολίγον ές χιλίους, καί άλλος όμιλος των βαρβάρων πολύς. It is not certain who this όμιλος βαρβάρων is, but it is not the Makedones, for in 125.1 Thoukydides differentiates the Make­dones from the όμιλος βαρβάρων: οί μέν Μακεδόνες καί τό πλήθος τών βαρβάρων...[32] It should be also noted that in this expedition against the Lynkestians only the Illyrians are dis­tinctly called βάρβαροι.

In Xenophon's Hellenika (V.2.12), the ambassadors of Akanthos and Apollonia declared before the Lakedaimonians πράγμα μέγα φυόμενον έν τή Ελλάδι. From what follows it may be concluded that Makedon and Amyntas are considered as part of Hellas[33]. Although Xenophon's remarks on Makedon proper are brief, the impression gained is that the Makedones are part of the Greek world, but parts of later greater Makedon are ruled by βασιλείς and Elimea by Derdas, for whom Xenophon has only admiration[34]. Thoukydides also refers to these βασιλείς of the various εθνη of Makedones[35], and they are also mentioned in IG I3 89 of perhaps 423/2 B.C.[36] One relative remark to the discussion here is Thrasymachos' dramatic line in defense of the Larisaians: 'Αρχελάωι δουλεύσομεν Έλληνες όντες βαρβάρωι;[37]. This altered Euripidean line has been cited as evidence that the Makedones were barbarians[38], but it's a line out of context and involves only king Archelaos. There is the περί Πολιτείας, but it's a polemic treat­ise[39]. In Plato's Gorgias[40], Archelaos is simply called άθλιος-άθλιώτατος because of his deeds, but never βάρβαρος. As noted elsewhere, Demosthenes made a distinction in Μακεδόνες καί βάρβαροι[41], and Isokrates introduces us to the classification of Έλληνες-Μακεδόνες-βάρβαροι[42]. On the other hand, both Aischylos and Aristophanes saw Makedon and the Makedones as part of the Greek world, when Pelasgos is said to have ruled the lands west of the Strymon[43] and barbarian gods, Triballian (in conjunction with the Illyrians), are imagined to exist above Zeus[44].

However, let's return once more to Xennias άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή.
How is this phrase appended to Xennias to be interpreted?

It may simply mean that Xennias spoke in some Makedo­nian fashion, and possibly he may not have been a Makedon himself, but hailed instead from Aitolia or Boiotia[45]. Nevertheless, the phrase άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή would indicate that the Makedones spoke in some particular mode. This is also indicated by Pausanias who says that the inhabitants of Messene recognized the intruders as Makedones and Demetrios, son of Phiuppos, from their όπλα and φωνή[46], which at the same time suggests that the Makedones' φωνή was understood by the populace of Messene. On the other hand, in the case of Xennias the phrase άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή appears to be an equivalent to Μακεδών, as in ... έκ Μακε­δονίας άνήρ Μακεδών, Αμύντας[47]. This equivalence finds support in a manumission inscription from Makedon, dated after A.D. 212. In this document, a two month old girl by the name of Nike is qualified by the phrase φωνή μακεδονική(ν)[48], which stands for the usual designation of γένει μακεδονικόν49.

No ancient source identifies the Makedones as δίγλωττοι, as Strabon does some inhabitants adjacent to Korkyra (fe'vtot δέ και δίγλωττοί εϊσι), to which area some extended Makedon, because of tonsure, διάλεκτος and chlamys (VII.7.8, C 327). This διάλεκτος kinship between Epeiros and Makedon is illustrated undoubtedly by Plutarch's story concerning the baby Pyrrhos and the flight to Makedonian Megara and then to Glaukias, king of the Illyrians, When attempting to cross into Makedon those carrying Pyrrhos communicated with the inhabitants across the river by means of a written message, showing undoubtedly that both parties spoke a common language[50]. The same is observed when Pyrrhos planted among the Makedones men pretending to be Makedones and urging the latter to rid themselves of Demetrios[51].

Thoukydides limits the designation δίγλωσσοι to the inhabitants of Akte (Athos) area: αϊ (πόλεις) οικούνται ξυμμίκτοις έθνεσι βαρβάρων δίγλωσσων (IV. 109.4). Arrian identifies Laomedon as δίγλωσσος, but this is in reference to the βαρβαρικά γράμματα and the αιχμάλωτοι βάρβαροι (III.6.6)[52]. Nor is there any mention in the sources that the Makedones have been hellenized, as Thoukydides remarks about part of the Amphilochians: καϊ ήλληνίσθησαν τήν νυν γλώσσαν τό πρώτον από τών Άμπρακιωτών ξυνοικησάντων οί δέ άλλοι Άμφίλοχοι βάρ­βαροι είσιν (II.68.5). In his Life of Pyrrhos (1.3), Plutarch speaks of some kings of the Molossoi (and Thesprotoi) as once έκβαρβαρωθέντες, with Tharrhypas introducing Έλληνικοΐς έθεσι και γράμμασι καί νόμοις φιλανθρώποις[53].

Curtius' account of the Philotas affair may be taken as an indication of διγλωσσία, as he has Alexander in a contio asking Philotas whether he will address the Makedones in the sermo patrius. In this contio apparently the koine was used, and Curtius makes no mention of inter­preters for the benefit of the Makedones who may not have known the koine, nor does Curtius specify in what language Boion, Philotas' accuser, spoke[54]. Later Curtius mentions an inter­preter, but this is between Philotas and the Makedones: qui (· Philotas) non erubesceret, Macedo natus, homines linguae suae per interpretem audire[55]. However, Curtius' account of the Philotas affair must be closely scrutinized as to how it fits into his scheme. The sermo patrius, with Philotas not knowing it, is undoubtedly a dramatic introduction by Curtius or his source(s) to spice up the Philotas controversy, in view of the friction between Alexander and Philotas[56], Moreover, Curtius' sermo patrius and the drama thereof may be a mere creation out of μακεδο­νίου or μακεδονίζειν found in his source(s).

From other parallels, it can be said that μακεδονιστί or μακεδονίζειν points to a Makedo­nian mode of speech rather than to a separate "Makedonian language", as advocated by some[57]. Arrian, for example, has a man from Boiotia approaching Alexander and addressing him βοιω-τιάζοντα άμα τή φωνή, but what follows is regular Greek; the Boiotian dialect or pronunciation is not reproduced[58]. In contrast, Plutarch gives us an example of τή φωνή λακωνίζων, when speaking of Mandrokleidas[59]. There is a specimen of "Makedonian" in the Βίος Αλεξάνδρου, where Peukoiaos addresses the dying Alexander μακεδονιστί, after an address in common Greek60. The "Makedonian" specimen has no peculiarities and is comparable to the Boiotian example given above61. There is also Stratus' line from his play the Makedones, but it cannot be identified exclusively as Makedonian, since the speaker of that line remains unknown[62]. The inscriptions, of course, have only revealed a Greek language in Makedon (above), with dialectic remains[61]. Moreover, it was a man wearing a Greek chlamys and dressed in Greek in other respects and speaking Greek that moved Nearchos' men to emotion and jubilation, when they learned from him that Alexander's camp was not far away[64]. This strengthens the evidence that Greek was the language of Alexander's army of Makedones and Hellenes (and others), and as Koinos told Alexander there was no shortage of Makedones and Hellenes to follow the king[65]. E. Badian, for example, has dwelled on this distinction of Makedones and Hellenes[66], but its significance is to be traced to their eponyms Makedon and Hellen respectively[67]. Makedon, the country, was part of Hellas[68], or at least came to be considered as such, although this does not always appear in our sources. Moreover, there is no evidence of the Makedones ever reacting against Greek culture per se, as they did when the Μακεδόνικα ονόματα (άγημα, πεζέταιροι, κτλ.) came to include Persians and Medes[69]. Thus, if the Makedones had felt that they were not part of Greek culture, they would have manifested this in some way, as they were so-to-speak overenamoured with their "Makedonism"[70].

Lastly, with reference to Xennias άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή, a parallel is found in Diodo-ros, XIX.41 (n. 72 below). In this passage, where Eumenes is about to clash with Antigonos (or vice versa), Antigenes, the Argyraspids' commander, dispatched one of his Makedonian horse­men to address the phalanx of Makedones with Antigonos before the battle began. This was a correct, and courteous, diplomatic move as the combatants were principally Makedones[71]. The Makedonian horseman approached Antigonos' Makedones and called them κακαί κεφαλαί, which may be a Makedonian expression, since Alexander also used it twice, once at Attalos and again at Kleitos, and the Argyraspids, too[72]. In any case, the horseman's address caused a tu­mult in Antigonos' lines, but eventually the two contestants joined battle. Diodoros' Makedo­nian horseman parallels Xennias άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή and at the same time strengthens the argument that the phrase άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή stands for Μακεδών (above).

But what inferences are to be drawn from Antigenes' Makedonian horseman?

Is it to be inferred that Antigenes did not speak or understand Makedonian and this is why he sent the Makedonian horseman to address the opposing Makedones, as it has been speculated about Eumenes? No such speculation is possible here, because Antigenes was a Makedon himself, although one could choose to argue, for argument's sake, that Antigenes did not know Makedonian, even though a Makedon, as Curtius reports ahout Philotas (above).

However, as also stated earlier, a Makedon would have been most fitting to address opposing fellow Makedones, because this was mainly a combat between Makedones[73]. Therefore, it does not follow that one can do much or anything with Xennias άνήρ μακεδονίζων τή φωνή, or with similar imprecise instances, as far as a separate "Makedonian language" is concerned. Nor can the same phrase be used to inject nonexistent language difficulties into the relations of Eumenes and his Makedonian troops. As it has been stated above, there are no observable language obstacles between Eumenes and his Makedones, and his speech which greatly moved the common Makedonian soldiers best exemplifies this[74].

For Fair Use Only

*The notes as and the appendixes you can read them in Professor Kapetanopoulos website in this link. You need Greek fonts in order to read some of the words of this academaic essay.

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