October 17, 2002
Hesiod And His 'Theogeny'
The man who calls himself 'Hesiod Theogeny' has attempted to defend his misspelling of his own chosen surname. I won't give him a link, but the date is today (October 17th) and the time 11:30 AM. Here is the pertinent portion of the post:
POST POSTSCRIPT: Incidentally, some wrongwingers have been making hay [they believe] by pointing out that the last name I use as a pseudonym "Theogeny" is actually supposed to be "Theogony." This is derived from the transliteration of Hesiod's classic work. They are correct, of course, that this is the generally accepted transliteration.
Since a transliteration is a letter-by-letter transposition from one alphabet into another, the generally accepted transliteration is 'Theogonía' with the accent or 'Theogonia' without. 'Theogony' is the generally accepted translation -- not the same thing at all.
Similarly, the name of Homer's greatest work would be transliterated 'Ilias', but translated 'Iliad'. (Only ignorant undergraduates spell it 'Illiad' with a double L. One of my teachers in graduate school used to put one question on all her mythology exams: 'Spell Iliad'. There was always one student in every class who spelled it Illiad even with the correct spelling right in the question. Was he or she too suspicious to realize that it was not a trick question, or just stupid?)
"Theogeny," however is a less common version that is even used, on occasion, by classical scholars. It's not widely accepted, by any means. In fact, here's an arcticle in which a reviewing scholar actually takes an author to task for using that spelling.
The 'arcticle' that 'Hesiod' quotes is a book review in which a classical scholar politely but firmly criticizes an English professor for not knowing how to spell 'Theogony' ("author and editors alike are to be reproached for such blunders"). The spelling 'Theogeny' is only used by competent classical scholars when quoting incompetent nonclassicists. It is simply wrong. How do I know? I've read the Theogony in Greek and taught it (in translation) to hundreds of undergraduates at two different universities. I've also given a lecture that was partly on Hesiod (though mostly on Prometheus Bound) at five different universities in the U.S. and U.K. At one of these, the first question afterwards was asked by the world's leading authority on Hesiod, a man who has written at least four books on him. I wonder if Pseudo-Hesiod can name him.
In any event, "Theogony" is probably the more appropriate transliteration. But, it's too late to change now. Have you ever made a mistake that you noticed right after you commit[t]ed it, but figured, it's no big deal? Hell, I make all sorts of typing errors on my blog entries, only to have to go back and try to clean them up later. I know I still miss some of them.
In fact 'Theogony' or (more pedantically) 'Theogonia' are the only correct ways to spell the title of the original Hesiod's work in English: the ending may differ, but the O in the third syllable is certain.
It is certainly true that 'Hesiod' makes "all sorts of typing errors" in his blog entries, but I've never seen any evidence that he goes back and fixes them -- or any of his more serious mistakes, either.
Given how much my use of "Theogeny" irritates some chickenbloggers, I've elected to keep using it. Especially since, other than Chickenbloggers, and the occasional Classical scholar, who gives a rat's ass?
For "irritates" read "amuses in a sick sort of way". It is the contemptible use of words like 'chickenblogger' that irritates us and makes us think of 'Hesiod' as a weaselblogger, a ratblogger, a louseblogger, or a cockroachblogger. And who gives a rat's ass? Anyone who cares about English usage, a class that does not seem to include poor ignorant 'Hesiod'.
Plus, I've now been identified by Tapped as "Hesiod Theogeny," so I'm stuck!
Wow! What an honor! I suppose I would be impressed if I had ever had any desire be linked by Tapped myself.
Posted by Dr. Weevil at October 17, 2002 10:02 PM
Again, I ask how the constant use of the word "chickenblogger" is supposed to get us to accept Hesiod's point of view on things?
I also ask whether there is a thesaurus for insults, so that if Hesiod won't at least give us reasoned argument in the place of ad hominem attacks, he will at least come up with something to use other than "chickenblogger"?
You know, variety is the spice of wit, as well as life. I wish someone would tell Hesiod that.
And incidentally? how does the name "Hesiod Theogeny" even make sense in the first place? The writer was "Hesiod" and his work was the "Theogony." He wasn't named "Hesiod Theogeny" or "Hesiod Theogony" for heaven's sake.
What's next? Shall we look forward to being regaled by a blog written by Dante Divina Commedia? How about William Hamlet? Or perhaps St. Augustine City of God? Niccolo Prince and Carl von On War can't be far behind either.
Also, does this work for musicians as well? Will there be a Wolfgang Amadeus Jupiter Symphony blogging soon? How about a Johann Sebastien The Goldberg Variations, BWV 988?
The mind boggles.
What is the latin translation of chickenblogger?
Sort of an odd thing happened with Hesiod site today. I followed a link to Eschaton and found a post concerning the bogus witness to the Home Depot sniping. The comment section had an inflammatory entry by Hesiod to the effect:
'Must have been a chickenblogger...'
Might have been 'chickenhawk'. Don't remember exactly. I did do a quick jump on Hesiod's name and got his site, where similar sentiments were posted. At any rate, I stepped out for a short meeting and the Eschaton site had updated and the Hesiod comment was gone. A little curious, I checked Hesiod's site and the similar post was gone also.
I think Hesiod's comment was deleted from Eschaton for being idiotic (Hesiodic as Steve Verdun puts it). And Hesiod then deleted the post from his site as quick as could be. Maybe some sense is returning to the debate from some of the left side blogs. A realization that delivery has hurt rather than helped them try to get their message out. Hope so anyway.
Doc, if I ever win the lottery and get to found that "perfect" private school I want, you'll be top on my list to head the Liberal Arts Department.
I like to call him "Hesiod Theogeny (sic)." Anyway, methinks the boy doth protest too much -- all he had to say was: "It was a typo/I wanted to spell it that way because..." or words to that effect, but instead he has to go into this whole long explicatory folderol that makes him look like an idiot. In fact, now he confirms that he does not bother to check or research anything in approved sophist-blogger fashion, which is why he resorts to ad hominem attacks, lame attempts at mockery, and the like. He's not even a good Sophist.
I guess it's too much to ask HT to tell the truth: He picked a title to make himself sound smart but was too stupid to check the spelling.
Joanne, you really are a humourless bitch.
Why do the 'Arlen P. Smithers' of the internet always hide behind fake e-mail and website-addresses when they insult their betters? Are they sock-puppets, or just contemptible two-legged slugs? This one's IP is 126.96.36.199. Anyone care to help track him down?
As for the question 'Smithers' asks in the second comment, the Latin translation of 'Arlen P. Smithers' is podex, a crude but not quite obscene word that means 'farthole', that part of the body with which one farts. (Similarly, the index is the part with which one points.) The word is found mostly in comic and satirical contexts, and has a very Beavis & Butt-Head tone to it.
Perhaps it's time for an internet poll: who is the Podex Maximus of the Blogosphere? I don't know who would win, but I think Max Sawicky would be in the top ten, and 'Hesiod', 'Atrios', and several of the 'WarbloggerWatchers' would fight it out for the top spot. Have I forgotten anyone?
Nice bit of pedantry, Doc. I'm always amazed (and amused) by the tenaciousness of you classicists.
But then, I can vividly recall writing a paper on the "Illiad" freshman year...at least that was a humiliation that taught me something.
I still would've made "Hesiod's" error about transliteration, though--if it is one. I thought the translation/transliteration distinction tracked the difference between words and names. Doesn't translation essentially involve the preservation of sense (i.e. meaning) rather than sound?
Which brings me to my question: how does one translate a name anyway, given that names have no meaning. (Insofar as they do, as with 'Dartmouth', their reference doesn't depend on the truth of the seeming description: the town is still Dartmouth even if it's not at the mouth of the Dart.)
If translation is tied to meaning, that would leave transliteration free to be more capacious, and to include the preservation of (something like) the sound of a name across different languages.
Indeed, according to American Heritage (via Dictionary.com), transliteration is defined as: "To represent (letters or words) in the corresponding characters of another alphabet." Now this is admittedly a bit dodgy: what could they mean by 'word' here, to preserve a distinction with translation? I suggest that the obvious answer is: a name.
I'm too lazy to pull out the OED (and the magnifying glass), but could it be that you're being a bit hyper-correct here? Or don't you recognize that category? Test: do you cringe at "stadiums"? Because I refuse to say that the World Series is played in two different "stadia."
Not sure I want to nominate anyone for Podex Maximus either, but I will note that, in my professional opinion, everything that "Demosthenes" (at Shadow of the Hegemon) says about philosophy is dubious at best, and usually either false or nonsense.
That IP address belongs to Shaw Fiberlink of Calgary, Canada. Their webpage is http://www.shaw.ca/start.html. It is used by a computer named "px3nr.wp.shawcable.net."
It is likely a cable-modem customer of Shaw Cable. They can be contacted at https://secure.shaw.ca/need_help/Request_Help_Form.asp.
No need to be embarrassed but you have misspelled "arcticle" in your post.
Looks a bit bad in a post about spelling but it is of course just a typo.
My main wonder is that you bother even taking notice of morons like "Hesiod".
I must say, though, that "Theogeny" is how I mostly recollect seeing it spelt.
Actually, I was making fun of Hesiod misspelling it. I probably should have said "arcticle" instead of 'arcticle' once I got to my own comments, but I've gotten into bad habits from publishing articles in British journals, where single quotation marks are often (always?) used for direct quotations.
There are hundreds of examples of 'Theogeny' and 'Illiad' on the web, but they're still wrong. I think I mentioned before that hundreds of sites mention 'Xeno's Paradox', when the man's name was certainly Zeno (zeta, not xi). I think 'Theogeny' may come from confusion with 'ontogeny' and 'phylogeny' and 'homogenize'.
Perhaps Ms./Mr. Smithers would care to add her/his definition of "Es-cha-ta-ton-ic" (adjectival form of Eschaton) to mine and Minuteman's: the petulant, abrupt curtailment of discussion when contradiction inherent in one's point looms.
Doc, I have just realized that one of my worst nightmares would be having lunch with you and Victor Davis Hanson, with the topic of conversation: the classics.
My contribution: "Uh--I read Bulfinch's Mythology. Oh, and Hamilton's, too! Ooh--ooh--and I had to read the Iliad AND the Odyssey in college! But in English.
Say, you guys ever watch Xena?"
And then I would fall silent for the rest of the afternoon.
Now Meryl, this isn't your sly and subtle way of telling us that *you* are none other than the person behind the nom de blog "Hesiod Theogeny?" And that you mis-typed what was meant to be "Hesiod Theogyny?"
Mmmm, lunch with Doc Weevil and VDH...!
Can you guys spell 'anal retentive'?
The point, digitalTrumpet, is not so much that 'Hesiod' can't spell his own chosen surname -- though that's ridiculous enough -- as that he won't even admit it when called on it. He claims that some classicists spell it that way, and he is wrong.
If he were just pretentiously stupid and not also systematically offensive and dishonest, I'd let it pass. But the fact that he's an intellectual fraud is well worth demonstrating, even if the detailed argument necessary to show it can get a little tedious.
Finally, I'd rather be anal-retentive than anal-explosive, like 'Arlen P. Smithers' and 'Hesiod' himself -- assuming of course that they are not the same person.
"The point, digitalTrumpet, is not so much that 'Hesiod' can't spell his own chosen surname -- though that's ridiculous enough -- as that he won't even admit it when called on it. He claims that some classicists spell it that way, and he is wrong."
The point is that you're an insufferable prig.
I think his "anal retentive" comment was pretty accurate.
I am going to institute a permalink to this specific post of your to show everyone EXACTLY what I mean by "chickenblogger."
The irony is palpable.
Or is that "eironeia?"
Typical 'Hesiod': he maliciously defines any non-veteran who supports war on Iraq as a 'chickenblogger', then pretends to illustrate the word by linking to a post that has nothing to do with Iraq, war, or military service. And he's still too chicken himself to allow comments on his own precious weblog.
Of course, he's still upset that I made fun of his pathetic attempt to smear others as Nazis, in which he shot himself in the foot due to his complete ignorance of German. Not that there's anything wrong with being ignorant of German -- as long as you don't try to make vicious jokes in the language.
I could permalink one of Pseudo-Hesiod's comments or weblog entries as a definition of some quality, but it would difficult to decide whether it would define "moron", "troll", "propagandist", "intellectual bully", "pseudo-intellectual", "hypocrite", or just "asshole". If these seem a little harsh, particularly the last, note that he has called me "Goebbels-esque" more than once.
And yes, 'Hesiod', irony is 'eironeia' in transliterated Greek. What it is not, in any language, is 'ireny'.
One more thing:
My subtitle lists "pedantry" as the second leading subject of this weblog. Pedantry is not to everyone's taste, and readers who dislike it are more than welcome to take their eyes elsewhere. To put it another way: if you find me "insufferable", there's a very easy way to put an end to your suffering (besides sleeping pills and razor blades, I mean).
Man, he must have *really* hit a nerve...
[Fraudulent and offensive e-mail address has been edited to give a more appropriate, but equally offensive, message.]
You folks all have way too much spare time.
You people need to shut off your computers every now and then and GO THE FUCK OUTSIDE. Your brains could obviously use the fresh air.
And once again, Hesiod substitutes ad hominem insults for argument. I still wait for him to explain to us how the constant use of "chickenblogger" will get anyone to accept his point of view.
Why won't you answer my question, Hesiod? Is it because you can't?
Hmmm, 'Ken' thinks I'm wasting my time arguing with 'Hesiod' (he may be right), but he doesn't have anything more important to do than come up with a clever address like 'firstname.lastname@example.org'.
I'm still wondering why there are so many people in the blogosphere who think it's clever to hide behind fake names and addresses and insult people who have never done them any harm. I don't wonder why so many of them are referred here by 'Hesiod': that seems utterly appropriate.
As usual, Weevil you lose.
"Chickenblogger" is not the same as "chickenhawk." It has nothing to do with Iraq or the war on terror [two mutually exclusive issues, incidentally].
Nope. Your post is a perfect example of chickenblogging.
I'll be sending you a lot of links.
You should thank me.
"Of course, he's still upset that I made fun of his pathetic attempt to smear others as Nazis, in which he shot himself in the foot due to his complete ignorance of German. Not that there's anything wrong with being ignorant of German -- as long as you don't try to make vicious jokes in the language."
Still upset? Interesting. I'd moved on from that a LOOONG time ago.
You do seem to be fixated on it though. And on me.
"I could permalink one of Pseudo-Hesiod's comments or weblog entries as a definition of some quality, but it would difficult to decide whether it would define "moron", "troll", "propagandist", "intellectual bully", "pseudo-intellectual", "hypocrite", or just "asshole". If these seem a little harsh, particularly the last, note that he has called me "Goebbels-esque" more than once."
You could do that, as it's your prerogative. But, of course, that would me flatteringly imitative of you, wouldn't it? Sort of like a trained monkey.
And how chickenbloggerish of you to whine like a 3-year-old at Toys-R-us about me calling you "Goebbels-esque."
I was, of course, referring to his famous propaganda techniques, not his NAZI ideology.
But, you knew that.
I'd hate to think you didn't know that, or it would make you look colossally stupid.
"And yes, 'Hesiod', irony is 'eironeia' in transliterated Greek. What it is not, in any language, is 'ireny'."
LOL!! Still fixated on that, are you?
"To put it another way: if you find me "insufferable", there's a very easy way to put an end to your suffering (besides sleeping pills and razor blades, I mean)."
"And once again, Hesiod substitutes ad hominem insults for argument. I still wait for him to explain to us how the constant use of "chickenblogger" will get anyone to accept his point of view.
Why won't you answer my question, Hesiod? Is it because you can't?"
Reasonable people are not insulted by the term "chickenblogger," because...well...they're REASONABLE.
They know I'm not talking about them. And, quite frankly, they're the only ones I care about.
Wackos such as yourself and weevil, are beyond mortal help. If George W. Bush arrested your family, summarily executed them, and thgen blamed it on Saddam Hussein...you'd bend over and ask for more.
So why should I be civil with you?
I tried that route, and got insulted for my trouble.
If you can't take it, go circle jerk on Instapundit, and Little Green Footballs.
"I'm still wondering why there are so many people in the blogosphere who think it's clever to hide behind fake names and addresses and insult people who have never done them any harm. I don't wonder why so many of them are referred here by 'Hesiod': that seems utterly appropriate."
You should see the e-mails I get from your gutless fellow-travellers, Weevil.
I've already forwarded a few to the FBI [not that they'd actually do anything.].
I'm going to ask people to stop posting such things in your comments section, however.
Um, could we please get back to this idea of lunch with Dr. Weevil and VDH?
'Hesiod' pretends not to understand that 'Goebbels-esque' has Nazi implications. Here's an analogy even he may understand. Suppose I were to call 'Hesiod' "turd-like" and then claim that I was not calling him filthy, foul-smelling, unclean, disgusting, or worthy of being flushed into the sewer never to return. Suppose I were to say that I was comparing 'Hesiod' to a turd only because both are three-dimensional objects of organic origin that obey the laws of gravity and make excellent fertilizer when buried in fields. Wouldn't it be dishonest to deny any negative implications in such a comparison? After all, there are plenty of other objects in the world that fit the description given, and the only reason to compare him to that particular one is to defame him.
If 'Hesiod' wants to accuse me of using dishonest rhetoric, he needs to (a) offer some evidence, which he has so far failed to do, and (b) either admit that he's calling me a Nazi or find a non-Nazi example. There is no shortage of dishonest rhetoricians in the history of the world, but somehow 'Hesiod' keeps coming back to Goebbels.
As for my supposed fixation on 'Hesiod', I never mentioned him until the German joke incident. He posted no fewer than eight comments on that single post, one of which compared me to Goebbels, and claims he tried to post two more. He has gone out of his way ever since to make me his enemy, and I am not particularly inclined to turn the other cheek, particularly when he brings his filthy comments to my weblog. If he were to offer a non-aggression pact, promising never to mention or link to me if I do the same for him, I would consider it, but (a) it's a little late for that, and (b) he hasn't offered it. Apparently he wants to continue insulting me, and then insult me for responding if I respond. As I've said before, he is (among other unpleasant things) an intellectual bully, who likes to dish out the insults but can't stand it when anyone criticizes him, even (or especially) when he is in fact wrong.
Question for my readers: Is there any good reason why 'Hesiod' should not be banned from this site until he either apologizes for his consistently contemptible behavior or opens his own site to comments? This particular guest has long since worn out his welcome. Comments, anyone? (Anyone but 'Hesiod', I mean.)
Wrong, oh weevilly one, he's an unintellectual bully. I found his frequent references to physical attacks strongly indicative of personal cowardice. And there is no reason not to ban him, in fact, there is a lot of reason to ignore the louse.
Thanks, RR. I hadn't noticed his second-to-last comment when replying to the last one, so I only just now saw "you'd bend over and ask for more" and "circle jerk". That does it. He's banned. No doubt he'll whine about it on his weblog, but it's not like I'm going to be able to write comments there.
By the way, a few months ago I deleted two blogs from my blogroll for similar language (e.g. blogger A "is performing rhetorical cunnilingus" on blogger B). And those were bloggers whose stuff I otherwise liked. Perhaps it's arbitrary to judge that kind of thing (with specific names included) more offensive than simple sexual or scatological epithets, but I do. And this is my weblog, so 'Hesiod' is no longer welcome here.
There's a whole section of the blogsphere that I read solely to keep up with the events of our country, because I don't have time to track down the interesting events myself. Beyond the aspect of posting links to possibly informative but relatively unimportant news, I don't really read into what most bloggers have to say because so much of it is tough-guy political posturing. Hesoid does it a lot, but he also links to a lot of articles that are interesting for liberals to read. I laugh at how much you bloggers love to sling mud at everyone. It's not just Hesoid and liberals, either. Conservatives love it just as much, if not more. Maybe rather than spending time calling everyone who doesn't agree with us a Nazi, or specifically ripping someone's moniker apart because they started using a different spelling of it, we could actually do some writing on, well, serious topics.
I like a lot of what Weevil has to say, and I like a lot of what Hesoid has to say, but I haven't seen arguing this embittered since my brother and I were younger than 10.
So sorry you thought my email address was "offensive," which begs the question: why were you trying to email me, anyway???
Which is the reason I don't use my *real* email address in the first place...
Hesiod, I never insulted you. Find a comment where I did. I just asked you questions, and you failed to answer them. Instead, you just resorted to the kindergarten humor that appears to be your sole gift. What's worse: you delivered it in a manner so thoroughly incoherent, I ended up being more amused than insulted. I'm sorry you appear incapable of surpassing that kind of low behavior, but at least I tried to be civil with you. I'm sorry you haven't the wit to reciprocate, or the honesty to prove yourself a worthy interlocutor in the first place.
This is probably the silliest and most anal thread (responsibility spilit between Doc, Hesiod, and most of y'all fellow travellers) that I have seen in blogdom yet. But, alas, I am not immune to being sucked in.
So in the spirit of even more pedantry, I offer this trivial shot at Dr. Weevil that proves nothing except that I, too, like to waste my time in pointless, egotistical demonstrations of one-upsmanship--
On a past post wherein Doc takes some random shots at HT (linked to above w.r.t. the Nazi thing), Doc says: "Too bad copyright on names doesn't extend to 2750 years."
Too bad you can't copyright names (or titles) at all. You can try to trademark names, although that generally expires when you stop using it. What can I say, except that pettiness is contagious?
Oh, and that Doc's random shot at Max Sawicky shows his true colours...if you're annoying enough to get banned from someone's comments, you should at least have the decency to suck it up and take like a...uh...insect...
Hesiod now claims, on my blog, that "chickenblogging" has NOTHING (caps his) to do with the "chickenhawk" slur. He doth protest too much, methinks:
Re: Pejman's comments right up there at the top, I did consider posting comments on a site I would rather not admit to visiting as Dante St. Ferneaux...
As for pseudo-Hesiod, "Quosque tandem abutere patientia nostra?" might be asked of him, but let's face it, "errare mehercule malo cum curculione quam cum iste vera sentire."
Thank you for banning him. There really is not point in arguing with someone as ignorant and petty as Hesiod.
Unorthodox Rhetorical Revenge!
(Those who know, know. Those who don't, well, don't worry.)
Hesiod is a troll, pure and simple. Don't feed the troll.
I wasn't trying to e-mail you, dork, I was trying to shame you into realizing that hiding behind such a bland and undistinctive pseudonym and such an offensive e-mail address is something only cowardly trolls do. It's perfectly possible to remain pseudonymous while using a distinctive name (e.g. 'dave z from buffalo') and a hotmail address that actually works. Failing to do so puts you in the same class as people who scrawl anonymous insults on toilet walls.
Eric No-Last-Name (not Eric M. Coe):
Not to be too petty, but my confusion of patents and trademarks was corrected by a commenter on the same post. Maybe I should spend more time adding 'Updates' or comments that say "touché" in such cases, but I figure allowing such a correction to go undisputed will usually suffice.
As for Max Sawicky, I was banned from his site for pointing out that he was utterly wrong in stating that 'warbloggers' treat Oliver North as a hero, and that the evidence he used to back up his assertion was fraudulent. I don't doubt that my behavior was "annoying", but calling it that omits the fact that his was dishonest.
You also might want to pass on your advice about "sucking it up" when you've been banned from someone's comments section to 'Hesiod': he needs it at least as much as I do.
If not more...
now that Jay Caruso is kicking his moronic ass around the block.
One problem with Trolls is that even when you kill them, they can come back to life.
The only thing a blogger presents to the world are his or her words. As such the care and quality with which those words are presented are necessarily a reflection on the writer. Certainly there's room for casual usage of language, but a complete absence of concern for the quality of the medium with which you interact with the world is akin to walking around in dirty rags and not bothering to take a shower or brush your teeth or comb your hair. Maybe if an unkempt, smelly, dirty bum with rank breath and body odor was to approach you and say something to you you might be inclined to listen to him, most likely though you would not.
I do not think "Hesiod" has anything so important or profound to say that he can so easily excuse his lack of attention to quality in writing.
Wouldn't "theogeny" mean becoming a god? So maybe he's just as egotistic as his blog sounds, a pedant with delusions of grandeur.