Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics

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Gnomes
(707 words)

Abstract

A gnome (or maxim) is a brief, succinct statement about particular aspects of human life and conduct, based on experience, expressing an opinion widely accepted, and giving advice for or against a course of action.

The Greek word gnṓmē, originally meaning ‘opinion’, is used since the 5th c. BCE (cf. Soph. Aj. 1091, Eur. fr. 362.3 Kannicht, Aristoph. Nub. 924, Xen. Mem. 4.2.9) to denote also a ‘maxim’ or a ‘wise saying’, i.e., a brief, general, succinct statement about particular aspects of human life and conduct,…

Cite this page
Dimitrios Christidis, “Gnomes”, in: Encyclopedia of Ancient Greek Language and Linguistics, General Editor: Georgios K. Giannakis. Consulted online on 08 December 2021 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2214-448X_eagll_SIM_00000464>
First published online: 2013



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