- φάινεταί μοι κῆνος ἴσος θέοισιν ἔμμεν ὤνερ
ὄστις ἐναντίος τοι ἰζάνει
καὶ πλασίον ἀδυ φωνεί σας ὐπακούει
He seems to me, that man, equal to the gods,
Who opposite you sits,
And close, to your sweet voice, listens.
1. κῆνος is εκεινος "that" and .... ὤνερ is ἀνηρ "man". This demonstrates the very thing which Lingamish was protesting against so vociferously in his post here possibly about GGBB.
2. ἴσος θέοισιν means "equal to the gods" and uses the same vocabulary as Phil. 2:6 εἶναι ἴσα θεῷ - to be equal to God
3. πλασίον is actually πλησίον which means "close" "next to" or "neighbour" as in "love your neighbour" Gal. 5:14 - although I do not think this poem is about neighbourly love.
4. αδυ is really ηδυς which means "sweet, dear, pleasant, welcome"
5. φωνή is voice
6. ὐπακούει means listen, but also "submit" or "obey". Compare this with Rev. 3:20 ἐάν τις ἀκούσῃ τῆς φωνῆς μου - if anyone hears my voice
In this poem a man, equal to the gods, listens (submits) to the sweet voice of his beloved. I hope this gives you the goosebumps. The vocabulary is Greek but the sentiment seems closer to S. of S.
Note: The line segmentation and translation are my own, to make it more literal and word for word. :-)
Poems of Sappho
PS: If Hebrew scholars are "cooler" than Greek scholars, then it stands to reason that Greek scholars are warmer than Hebrew scholars. This post was prompted by Learning Dead Languages is a Drag.