Title

Footrace, Dance, and Desire: The ΧορόΣ of Danaids in Pindar's Pythian 9

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2007

Abstract

This paper offers a new interpretation of Pindar's Pythian 9.112-16, which relates the story of Danaos marrying off his forty-eight daughters. Previously, these lines have been understood as describing a footrace by the daughter's suitors to determine which suitor would marry which daughter. By reanalyzing Pindar's diction I suggest that this passage also depicts Danaos' daughters in the marked terms of choral performance. This interpretation not only matches the representation of the Danaids as a performing chorus in Phyrnicus' Danaids and Aeschylus' Suppliants, but it also further illuminates the way desire permeates and organizes this particular Pindaric ode.