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date: 30 November 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter presents observations about the relationship between the poetry of Hesiod and of Solon (Works and Days 213–326 and Solon frr. 4 and 13). In the first half of fr. 4 Solon, through a series of allusions, incorporates into his poem Hesiod’s authority on dikē to validate condemnation of injustice in his own city, and in the second half of the poem he turns the Hesiodic pessimism of this injustice into an optimistic hope for his city’s just future. In fr. 13 Solon expands Hesiod’s notion of Zeus as the punisher of injustice to create a pessimistic view of human life darker than Hesiod’s own. A final discussion of the scholarly division on the question of whether dikē in Solon is essentially Hesiodic or something new in Greek thought rounds out the observations on the relation between the poets and confirms Solon’s dependence on Hesiod.

Keywords: dikē, straight justice, pessimism, optimism, natural law, Eunomia, Dusnomia

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