Secret Alias wrote: ↑
Wed Sep 16, 2020 4:02 pm
Clement Exhortation 2.13.2
Πάρεστι δὲ καὶ ἄλλως μυθήριά σοι νοεῖν ἀντιστοιχούντων τῶν γραμμάτων τὰ μυστήρια
You may understand mysteria in another way, as mytheria, the letters of the two words being interchanged
Does this represent the earliest reference to the letter stigma?
i.e. μυθήριά and μυϛηρια?
How else can the transposition of two letters work? It can't be standard spelling of mysteria μυστήρια. ἀντιστοιχούντων implies a one for one pairing or interchange.
I think the ligature stigma
is much later than Clement; I think it is medieval, based on the minuscules.
I hear what you are saying about ἀντιστοιχέω (strictly speaking, it should mean one to one), but I think Clement just made this word up (and therefore was not speaking strictly, since he was just getting his dumb pun to work):
You may understand mysteria [μυστήρια] in another way, as mytheria [μυθήρια], the letters of the two words being interchanged; for certainly fables of this sort hunt [θηρεύουσι] after the most barbarous of the Thracians, the most senseless of the Phrygians, and the superstitious among the Greeks.
I cannot find this word, μυθήριά, anywhere in ancient or medieval Greek except
for this passage in Clement, a quotation of this same passage in Eusebius, and some medieval lexical entries speculating about the origin of the word μυστήρια.