I've been very impressed by the online archive of classical texts at theoi.com, and have been using it to verify dubious-sounding claims from e.g. Robert Graves against the text of the myths themselves.

However, sometimes, theoi will cite a "scholiast" as a source for its information - for example "Schol. ad Theocrit" (Scholiast of Theocritus). Printed references, like Smith's "Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology" also sometimes cite these. And while the text of the myths is hosted on theoi to check against, I cannot find the scholia anywhere, either on that site or on the wider Internet!

This is mostly a request for information on where to find English translations of the scholia. But if these translations generally don't exist - if the scholars tend to work from the original Greek and Latin texts of these, for example - then please let me know. I really don't want to spend too long fruitlessly searching for e.g. "Schol. ad Apollon. Rhod" (which AFAICT is actually a scholiast on his Argonautica!)


1 Answer 1


As far as I know (having been searching for a long time), there's no published translation (English or otherwise) of any complete set of Greek scholia. But there are possible workarounds.

  1. Commentaries often quote or paraphrase scholia, so you might start by looking at a commentary on the quoted passage. For example, Perseus has a digitized copy of a Commentary on Apollonius' Argonautica. A search (for "schol") reveals that the scholiast is quoted at least 431 times in the work. If you look in the commentary, you might find a mention of the scholia you're looking for in translation or paraphrase.

  2. If you have a scholarly book on a relevant topic (scholia or mythology), look in the back for an index or index locorum, and see if the scholia you're looking for are referred to in the book. The scholia might be quoted and translated.

  3. If you happen to be looking for scholia on Euripides' Orestes, the Euripides Scholia database has some (not all) of them translated.

  4. Obviously, if all else fails, you can look in the original Greek and translate it yourself. For example, scholia on Apollonius Rhodius can be found here.

  • My thanks for that - even though you were the bearer of bad news, I wish I had enough reputation to upvote this answer! I'll probably accept it by clicking on the tickmark, but I'll just wait a little longer in case anyone else answers. Nov 13, 2019 at 9:18
  • Incidentally, do you have links to the (untranslated) scholiast of Theocritus, or of Pindar's Olympian Ode? Euripides' Orestes was one of the ones I was looking for, thanks for that! Nov 13, 2019 at 10:23
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    Theocritus, Pindar Olympian Odes
    – b a
    Nov 13, 2019 at 10:38
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    For future reference, Scaife viewer has the major scholia as text. If you're looking for scholia on archive.org, what I do is control+f "scholia" here to find it and then paste the id number after the url archive.org/details/, or if it's not there, just search directly on archive.org
    – b a
    Nov 13, 2019 at 10:45
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    @Astrid_Redfern I think you would have to check manually through each book through each book, since the numbers in the interface don't correspond to the numbers in Homer. But ctrl+f of 18.486 in the XML file worked for me to locate the passages. As it turns out, the numbers to type in "passage reference" are 2.18.198 and 6a.18.64
    – b a
    Nov 15, 2019 at 1:01

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