O.K. (caprinus) wrote in linguaphiles,

Not another Latin question!

I lied, it totally is. Also Hellenistic Greek.

William Blake's Proverbs of Hell contain:

The pride of the peacock is the glory of God.
The lust of the goat is the bounty of God.
The wrath of the lion is the wisdom of God.
The nakedness of woman is the work of God.

Would the first line be accurately translated as "pavi superbia gloria Dei [est]" (I realize some arguments may be made in favour of other words for "pride", but I am mostly making sure I declined it properly)? Anyone want to give the other three lines a stab?

Extra credit: what would the first line be in Hellenistic Greek? Specifically, the sort St. Irenaeus might have written his 2nd cent. CE κατὰ αἱρέσεων (Against Heresies) in? (I am trying to pinpoint the era because I think the word for "peacock" is one of those that changed somewhat depending on the kind of ancient Greek one spoke. But I haven't gone to check at Perseus or anything.)

Now, Irenaeus's most famous line, in AH4.34.5-7 (some of you may see where I am heading with this) is usually translated as "Man fully alive is the glory of God" -- "gloria [enim] Dei vivens homo" in the Latin (the original Greek has been lost, I believe). This means, by the law of aphoristic commutation, that "the pride of a peacock is a human alive", but really the best we can say is that in both being equated to the glory of God, the two are alike, not equivalent. So "homo vivens pavi superbia" (assuming "pavi superbia" is right) is too strong -- how would I stress, in Latin (and perhaps Greek), that "homo vivens" is like "pavi superbia" -- a simile instead of a metaphor?


PS: Not one person was able to help with my Thai question a while back... have we no Thai speakers in the comm? *sadface*
Tags: greek, latin, translation request


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