AGAPAW, FILEW: correction

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at
Thu Oct 18 10:41:59 EDT 2001

At 9:50 AM -0400 10/18/01, Carl W. Conrad wrote:
>Classical Greek idiom uses FILEW to express natural tendencies. I'm drawing
>a blank (mark of senescence) on Aristotle's best-cited FILEI hH FUSIS ...
>--can anyone spell me out? But the one that comes most readily to mind is
>Thucydides' PANTA FILEi ELASSOUSQAI = "Everything has a natural tendency to
>deteriorate"--or, more colloquially, "Everything loves to go bad." How's
>that for focus on the emotional side? I'd still prefer to go back to the
>etymological element: FILEW is "have kindred feeling for"--seems to me that
>attitudes toward kin run across the entire spectrum of positive and

The Thucydides citation doesn't have FILEI but rather PEFUKE, which is used
exactly the same way as FILEI, but the usage of FILEI is sort of cute, I
think, but it's an extension from the notion of kindred association
inherent in the root.

Perseus LSJ: FILEW:
II. after Hom., c. inf., love to do, be fond of doing, and so to be wont or
used to do, phileei ho theos ta huperechonta kolouein Hdt.7.10 .e; ên
hamartôsi tou patrikou tupou . . phileousi diaphtheiresthai Democr.228 ;
Moisa memnasthai ph. Pi. N.1.12 , cf. P.3.18; philei de tiktein hubris . .
hubrin A.Ag.763 (lyr.); tois thanousi toi philousi pantes keimenois
epengelan S.Aj.989 , etc.; rarely with part. for inf., phileis de drôs'
auto sphodra Ar.Pl.645 .
2. of things, events, etc., aurê apo psuchrou tinos phileei pneein Hdt.2.27
; philei ôdina tiktein nux A.Supp.769 ; emporôn epê ph. planasthai S.OC 304
; philei gar pôs ta toiauth' heterai trepesthai Ar.Nu.813 (lyr.); philei
megala stratopeda ekplêgnusthai Th.4.125 ; ho dê ph. ho erôs empoiein
Pl.Smp.182c : esp. with gignesthai of what usually happens, apo peirês
panta anthrôpoisi phileei ginesthai everything comes to man by experience,
Hdt.7.9.g, cf. 7.10.z, 7.50, Th.3.42, Isoc.6.104, Pl. R.494c, al.; hoia ph.
gignesthai Th.7.79 , cf. Hdt.8.128; without gignesthai, hoia dê philei as
is wont, Pl.R.467b; hopoia ph. Luc.Am.9 .
3. impers., phileei de kôs prosêmainein (sc. ho theos), eut' an . .
Hdt.6.27; hôs dê philei . . logon

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
Most months: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad at OR cwconrad at

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