PURA. Purism In Antiquity: Theories Of Language in Greek Atticist Lexica and their Legacy

Lexicographic entries

(Phryn. Ecl. 310, Poll. 10.12–3)

A. Main sources

(1) Phryn. Ecl. 310: ἐνδομενία ἀμαθῶς, δέον διττῶς λέγειν ὡς Εὔπολις Κόλαξι ‘σκεύη τὰ κατὰ τὴν οἰκίαν καὶ ἔπιπλα’.

ἐνδομενία already conjectured by de Pauw in Lobeck (1820, 334) : ἐνδυμενία codd., Lobeck, Rutherford, Fischer.

ἐνδομενία (‘household stuff’) [is used] ignorantly. One should say, with two separate words as Eupolis [does] in the Kolakes (fr. 161 = C.1), ‘the utensils and items of the house’.

(2) Poll. 10.12–3: τὴν δὲ τοιαύτην κατασκευὴν ἐνδομενίαν οἱ πολλοὶ καλοῦσιν· ἐγὼ δὲ οὐκ ἐπαινῶ μὲν τοὔνομα, μηνύω δέ, ὅστις εἰπὼν αὐτὸ ἀπολoγεῖσθαι βούλοιτο ὡς ἔστιν ἔν τινι βιβλίῳ, ὅτι ἐν Ὀλυμπιάδος ἀπογραφῇ, τῇ κατ’ ὄνομα περὶ τῶν φαμένων ἀφῃρῆσθαι τὰς δόσεις, οὕτως ἐγγέγραπται. κάλλιον δὲ ταύτην τὴν ἐνδομενίαν παγκτησίαν ἢ παμπησίαν ὀνομάσαι, ὡς ἐν Ἐκκλησιαζούσαις Ἀριστοφάνης· τραγικώτερον γὰρ ἡ παγκληρία. τὰ δὲ σκεύη καὶ σκευάρια φίλον τοῖς κωμῳδοῖς καλεῖν.

Common people call such equipment (i.e. household stuff) ἐνδομενία. I, however, do not approve of the word, though I make known – in case someone who uses it wishes to excuse it because it is attested in some written source – that it is found written in a register of an Olympiad, the one that goes by the name ‘on those who were accused of having stolen the offerings’ (i.e. the dedicated crowns?). It is more elegant to call this household stuff παγκτησία or παμπησία, as Aristophanes does in Assemblywomen (868), for παγκληρία is more appropriate to tragedy. Comic poets are fond of calling the utensils σκευάρια as well.

B. Other erudite sources

(1) Hsch. ε 2811: ἐνδομενία· κτῆσις. ἢ ἀποσκευή.

ἐνδομενία: Property. Or household goods.

(2) Su. ε 1194: ἐνδυοµενία. ‘τὴν µὲν ἐνδοµενίαν ἅπασαν ἐκ τῶν οἰκιῶν ἐξήρπασαν’. τὰ ἔπιπλα.

ἐνδυοµενία: ‘[They] plundered all the household stuff from the houses’ (Plb. 4.72 = C.2). The household items.

C. Loci classici, other relevant texts

(1) Eup. fr. 161:
ἄκουε δὴ σκεύη τὰ κατὰ τὴν οἰκίαν
παραπλησίως τε συγγέγραπται τἄπιπλα. (cf. A.1)

Now listen to the [list of] the objects in the house! And the household items have been listed likewise.

(2) Plb. 4.72.1: οἱ δὲ Μακεδόνες εἰσπεσόντες τὴν μὲν ἐνδομενίαν ἅπασαν ἐκ τῶν οἰκιῶν παραχρῆμα διήρπασαν […].

The Macedonians, having made an assault, at once plundered all the household stuff from the houses […]. (Cf. B.2)

(3) Corn. ND 14, p. 68 Torres: θήλειαι δὲ παρήχθησαν τῷ καὶ τὰς ἀρετὰς καὶ τὴν παιδείαν θηλυκὰ ὀνόματα ἐκ τύχης ἔχειν πρὸς σύμβολον τοῦ ἐνδομενείας καὶ ἑδραιότητος τὴν πολυμάθειαν περιγίνεσθαι.

[The Muses] were presented as women because the words for the virtues and for education happen to be feminine and to symbolise the fact that learning comes from staying at home and from stability. (Transl. Boys-Stones 2018).

(4) P.Oxy. 3.493.15–8 (= TM 20629) [before 99 CE]: Πασίων Σα[ρα]πίων[ος] τοῦ Πασίωνο[ς π]εποίημαι σὺν τῇ γυναικὶ Βερενίκῃ τὴν διαθήκην καὶ καταλίπω με[τ]ὰ τὴ[ν τελε]υτὴν ε[ἶν]αι τοῦ ἀσφ[αλῶς περι]όντος τὰ τοῦ πρωτελευτήσ[α]ντος ἀπολειφθησόμενα σιτικὰ [ἐδάφη καὶ οἰκόπεδα] καὶ ἔπ[ιπλα καὶ σκε]ύη καὶ ἐνδομε[ν]είαν [καὶ γενή]ματα καὶ γυν<α>ικεῖον κόσμον […].

I, Pasion, son of Sarapion, son of Pasion, have made [this] will with my wife Berenice, and I stipulate (literally: ‘leave’) that after death the things left over by the one [of us] who has died first belong securely to the one who survives: the corn-producing [lands and the buildings], the household items, the utensils and household stuff, the produce, the female apparel […].

(5) BGU 7.1655.38–44 (= TM 9535) [Philadelphia, 169 CE]: γεινώσκ[ει]ν θέλω τέκνα μου στρατευόμ(ενα), ἐπειδὴ διὰ τὴ[ν] στρατείαν ἄπεισιν, μη[δέ]ν μοι ἐν δραχ[μ]αῖς Σεβασταῖς τὸ καθόλον ὑπάρχειν ἢ καταλ[ελε]ιφεν[αι], ἵνα μὴ τοῖς ἀδελφοῖς ἑαυτῶν [ ̣    ̣    ̣ λόγ]ους παρέξονται ὑπὲρ αὐτοῦ τοῦ πράγματος. καὶ ὁμοίως ὑπὲρ ἐνδυμεν[ε]ίας Τιτανιανῷ καὶ Νεμεσίλλῃ.

I want my children who are now in the army to know, since they are in the military service, that I neither possess any Augustan drachmae nor have bequeathed them anything, thus they do not have to produce an account to their brothers concerning this matter, and likewise regarding the household stuff to Titanianos and Nemesilla.

(6) Epiph.Const. Anac. 1.167.15: ἀποδεκατώσεις καὶ ἀπαρχαὶ καὶ ἐνδελεχὴς εὐχὴ καὶ σχήματα ἐθελοθρῃσκευτικὰ τῆς ἐνδυμενίας […].

[Also among the Pharisees there are] tithes and first-fruit offerings and perpetual prayer and a pretendedly religious style of dress […].

(7) P.Mil. 2.48.7–9 (= TM 21282) [Oxyrhynchus, 549 CE)]: […] καὶ δέξασθαί με παρὰ σοῦ λόγῳ μισθοῦ παντὸς τοῦ τριέτους χρόνου σὺν τῇ ἐμῇ τροφῇ καὶ τῇ ἐνδυμενίᾳ […].

[…] And that I receive from you an account of the whole payment of the three-year period, together with my food and clothing […].

(8) Mac.Aeg. Hom. 25.1: ὥσπερ ἐάν τις ἔχῃ μεγάλην οὐσίαν ἔν τε χρήμασι καὶ σκεύεσι, χρυσῷ τε καὶ ἀργύρῳ καὶ πάσῃ ἐνδυμενίᾳ, καὶ ἕτερος κεκτῆται οὐσίαν ἐλαχίστην ἐν πᾶσιν, ἄλλος δὲ σύμμετρον οὐσίαν κεκτῆται – οὕτω καὶ αἱ ψυχαί εἰσι τῶν ἀνθρώπων.

Just as one might have significant wealth in goods, objects in gold and silver, and all the household stuff, and another might own a very little property in all respects, and another one might own adequate property: thus also are the souls of men.

(9) Basilica 6.3.51: oἱ δὲ τῶν ἐπαρχιῶν ἄρχοντες μηδὲ ἀπὸ βασιλέως ἐπιτροπῆς κτιζέτωσαν ἢ ἀγοραζέτωσαν δίχα τῶν εἰς ἀποτροφὴν καὶ ἐνδυμενίαν […].

Those who are heads of the districts shall not build or buy [property] except by imperial authorisation, unless [it is] for nourishment and clothing […].

(10) Vitae Sancti Martiniani 4.8–11: καὶ περιειλαμένη τὸν κόσμον αὐτῆς ἀπ’ αὐτῆς περιεβάλετο ῥακώδη καὶ ῥάκος περιεδήσατο τὴν κεφαλὴν αὐτῆς καὶ σχοινίον περιεζώσατο, καὶ λαβοῦσα πήραν ἔβαλεν ἐν αὐτῇ πᾶσαν τὴν ἐνδυμενίαν τοῦ καλλωπισμοῦ αὐτῆς.

And tossing [all] ornament away from herself she put on a ragged [dress], bound her head with a rag, girded herself with a rope, and, taking a leather pouch, threw all the stuff of her adornment inside it.

D. General commentary

The Eclogue entry (A.1) concerns the feminine noun ἐνδομενία ‘household stuff’. This noun, which occurs only from the Hellenistic age onwards, was often confused, both graphically and semantically, with another word, ἐνδυμενία ‘clothing’, which is itself not attested before the 4th century CE. The manuscripts of the Eclogue (A.1) have ἐνδυμενία, which has been corrected to ἐνδομενία by de Pauw (in Lobeck 1820, 334), since the required meaning in the passage is ‘household stuff’ (as indicated by the alternative expression that Phrynichus provides: σκεύη τὰ κατὰ τὴν οἰκίαν καὶ ἔπιπλα) and not ‘clothing’ (see below for a discussion of more attestations). Given the confusion between ἐνδομενία and ἐνδυμενία, we shall address both forms in this article, following Montevecchi (1942).

ἐνδομενία is best explained as the nominalisation of a compound of ἔνδονἔνδον andμένω μένω, i.e. probably a form in -μένης, indicating something ‘which stays inside the house’. Compounds in -μένης are a rarity in Greek, however, where μένω usually produces verb-first formations in μενε-. The only possible parallel for the orientation of ἐνδομενία is ἀγρομενής, a hapax reported by Hsch. α 822 (ἀγρομενής· ὁ ἐν ἀγρῷ διατρίβων καὶ εἰς ἄστυ μὴ κατιών ‘one who stays in the fields and does not go to the city’). Notice that while Cornutus (C.3) correctly analyses ἐνδομενεία (with this spelling) as a form connected with ἔνδον and μένω, he is unique in interpreting it as an abstract noun indicating the act of staying indoors. This is clearly a para-etymology which he produces in the context of his allegorical interpretation of the Muses. The rarity and morphological obscurity of ἐνδομενία could have led to its reinterpretation as a form based on ἔνδυμι/ἐνδύομαιἔνδυμι and to the creation of the by-form ἐνδυμενία, itself probably influenced by ἔνδυμαἔνδυμα ‘clothing’. As Montevecchi (1942, 84) notes, ἐνδυμενία is never the object of lexicographic attention. This suggests that its meaning was sufficiently transparent, a fact which could explain why it crept into the manuscript tradition of some texts where ἐνδομενία ‘household stuff’ is required instead (examples include the lemma in the Suda, B.2, which refers to ἐνδομενία ‘household stuff’ but spells the word as ἐνδυοµενία, which is clearly influenced by ἐνδύω).

Both ἐνδομενία and ἐνδυμενία occur in post-classical, mostly low-register, texts. This explains why Phrynichus (A.1) and Pollux (A.2) disapprove of ἐνδομενία. As an alternative, Phrynichus prescribes the expression σκεύη τὰ κατὰ τὴν οἰκίαν καὶ ἔπιπλα, as used by Eupolis (C.1), who belongs to his small group of approved Old Comedy poets (the textual history of the fragment, which is quoted more fully by Pollux 10.10, is difficult: see Napolitano 2012, 84–6; Olson 2016, 58–60). Unlike in other entries of the Eclogue, however, Phrynichus is not here recommending an archaic Attic usage. In other texts too the association between ἐνδομενία, σκεύη, and ἔπιπλα is frequent: see C.4 (ἔπιπλα καὶ σκεύη καὶ ἐνδομενείαν), Ph. De specialibus legibus 3.206.4Ph. De specialibus legibus 3.206.4 (σκεύη δὲ καὶ ἔπιπλα καὶ ὅσα ἄλλα ἔνδον), Polyaen. 7.29.2Polyaen. 7.29.2 (ἔπιπλα καὶ σκεύη), and Chrys. In epistulam ad Philippenses MPG 62.197.19Chrys. In epistulam ad Philippenses MPG 62.197.19 (σκεύη, καὶ κλῖναι, καὶ ἔπιπλα), among other examples (a full list of occurrences in the papyri is provided by Montevecchi 1942, 80–2).

These passages show that ἐνδομενία could denote both lighter utensils such as pots and pans (σκεύη) and heavier household goods such as furniture (ἔπιπλα, loosely ‘household items’: on the meaning of this noun, see Poll. 10.10, Harp. ε 109, and Su. ε 2510, all discussed, alongside other examples, in Olson 2016, 58–9; see too Napolitano 2012, 85 n. 200 and 86 n. 201). Pollux (A.2) however equates ἐνδομενία with words that denote property in general: παγκτησία (first attested in Philo of Alexandria), παμπησία, and παγκληρία (both attested in Attic poetry, the latter only in tragedy). This use of ἐνδομενία to denote movable property more broadly is also attested in legal papyri. Consider for instance C.4, a unique joint will by a husband and wife (on the text and the wealthy couple, see van Minnen 1998, 61–4), and C.5, another will, the Greek translation of a lost Latin text.

Pollux (A.2) disparagingly attributes ἐνδομενία to the language of the πολλοίοἱ πολλοί and adds, for those who still wish to use it, that he has found it attested only in one ancient source: ἐν Ὀλυμπιάδος ἀπογραφῇ, τῇ κατ’ ὄνομα περὶ τῶν φαμένων ἀφῃρῆσθαι τὰς δόσεις. In the translation offered here, ἐν Ὀλυμπιάδος ἀπογραφῇ is interpreted as a reference to a register (perhaps an inscription) concerning an Olympiad, which took its name from those who were accused of having stolen the offerings (perhaps to be interpreted as the victory crowns offered to the gods). The analysis of the passage cannot be advanced further since we have no other evidence concerning a document of this kind. The interpretation offered by Hemsterhuys (in Lederlin, Hemsterhuys 1706, vol. 2, 1154) is to be rejected. Hemsterhuys took Ὀλυμπιάδος to refer to the mother of Alexander the Great and advanced the hypothesis that the word was Macedonian, an opinion followed by Sturz (1808, 165) and Lobeck (1820, 334). This linguistic hypothesis has little factual basis. The Atticists’ condemnation of ἐνδομενία is unlikely to have concerned the origin of the word and must be due rather to its association with low-register language, as confirmed by its rare occurrence in Polybius (C.2) and the several attestations in legal papyri (e.g. C.4, C.5, P.Amh. 2.152 (= TM 24876)P.Amh. 2.152 (= TM 24876) [late 5th–early 6th c. CE]). In later periods, ἐνδομενία crops up mostly in Christian writings (e.g. C.8) or legal texts that depend on earlier sources. It would also be odd if Pollux, in condemning ἐνδομενία as a low-register word, would point those who still wish to use it in the direction of a text attributed to a Macedonian, however royal she may be. It makes more sense to assume that his reference is to an official inscription, one which was likely better known to Pollux’s contemporaries than to us. In some later sources, ἐνδομενία and ἐνδυμενία ‘clothing’ are confused. Apart from its occurrence in the manuscripts of Phrynichus’ Eclogue (A.1, see apparatus), ἐνδυμενία is first securely attested in Epiphanius’ Panarion (C.6, 4th century CE: on this work and its style, see Williams 2009, xx–xxxi) and slightly later in a contract from Oxyrhynchus (C.7). The other occurrences of ἐνδυμενία in the meaning ‘clothing’ are all in Byzantine texts (see e.g. C.9, C.10).

Montevecchi (1942, 80 and 84) discusses the possibility that the earliest attestation of ἐνδυμενία could be in Polybius. She defends the reading ἐνδυμενία offered in cod. Monac. gr. 388 (D, 14th century) and cod. Paris. gr. 1648 (E, 14th century) for δύναμιν of Plb. 5.81.3Plb. 5.81.3 (κατὰ δὲ τὴν ἐσθῆτα καὶ τὴν ἄλλην περικοπὴν ἀνεπισήμαντος διὰ τὸ ποικίλην εἶναι κἀκείνων τὴν δύναμιν ‘for his dress and the other apparel [Theodotus] was not noticeable, because their army too was diversified [in its apparel]’). κἀκείνων τὴν δύναμιν is the reading of cod. Vat. gr. 124 (A, mid-10th century), which is the oldest manuscript of Polybius, and Büttner-Wobst (1889, L) accepts this reading against that of the later manuscripts. This seems the safest option. Not only would the reading ἐνδυμενίαν be a repetition of the preceding ἐσθῆτα while δύναμιν introduces a variatio, but its presence here would go against the other information we have on the history of this word, which safely place it in the late antique and Byzantine periods (as discussed by Montevecchi 1942 herself). Moreover, the corruption of a supposedly original ἐνδυμενίαν into δύναμιν is difficult to understand in a linguistic context in which ἐνδυμενία was not a rare word. The opposite corruption of δύναμιν into ἐνδυμενίαν can be justified on these exact grounds. It could be a slip (or a conscious intervention?) of a copyist who, on account of the preceding ἐσθῆτα, changed the more difficult δύναμιν into the more everyday word ἐνδυμενίαν: Polybius here writes ‘army’ (δύναμις) but the intended meaning is ‘the clothes worn by the army’, which may require an explanation.

E. Byzantine and Modern Greek commentary

Both ἐνδομενία and ἐνδυμενία are avoided in all high-register texts and remain rare even in legal texts such as the Basilica (C.9) and hagiographies such as the late 9th-century CE Life of Saint Martinianus (C.10). Neither noun is registered in Kriaras, LME.

F. Commentary on individual texts and occurrences



Boys-Stones, G. (2018). L. Annaeus Cornutus. Greek Theology, Fragments, And Testimonia. Translated with an Introduction and Notes. Atlanta.

Büttner-Wobst, T. (1889). Polybii Historiae. 5 vols. Leipzig.

Lederlin, J. H.; Hemsterhuys, T. (1706). Iulii Pollucis Onomasticum. Graece et Latine. Cum commentariis Jungermanni, Kühnii, Seberi et aliorum. 2 vols. Amsterdam.

Lobeck, C. A. (1820). Phrynichi Eclogae nominum et verborum Atticorum. Leipzig.

Montevecchi, O. (1942). ‘ΕΝΔΟΜΕΝΙΑ–ΕΝΔΥΜΕΝΙΑ’. Aegyptus 22, 77–84.

Napolitano, M. (2012). I Kolakes di Eupoli. Introduzione, traduzione, commento. Mainz.

Olson, S. D. (2016). Eupolis. Heilotes – Chrysoun genos (frr. 147–325). Translation and Commentary. Heidelberg.

Sturz, F. W. (1808). De dialecto Macedonica et Alexandrina liber. Leipzig.

Van Minnen, P. (1998). ‘Berenice, A Business Woman from Oxyrhynchus. Appearance and Reality’. Verhoogt, A. M. F. W.; Vleeming, S. P. (eds.), The Two Faces of Graeco-Roman Egypt. Greek and Demotic and Greek-Demotic Texts and Studies Presented to P. W. Pestman. Leiden, Boston, Köln, 59–70.

Williams, F. (2009). The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis. Vol. 1: Sects 1–46. 2nd edition. Leiden, Boston.


Olga Tribulato, 'ἐνδoμενία (Phryn. Ecl. 310, Poll. 10.12–3)', in Olga Tribulato (ed.), Digital Encyclopedia of Atticism. With the assistance of E. N. Merisio.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.30687/DEA/2021/01/031

This article provides a philological and linguistic commentary on the word ἐνδoμενία (with its graphic variant ἐνδυμενία), discussed in the Atticist lexica Phryn. Ecl. 310 and Poll. 10.12–3).