Wealth and wisdom are for mortals ever irresistible

Theognis 1157-1160, text from the Loeb Greek Elegiac Poetry.

πλοῦτος καὶ σοφίη θνητοῖς ἀμαχώτατοι αἰεί·
οὔτε γὰρ ἂν πλούτου θυμὸν ὑπερκορέσαις·
ὣς δ᾿ αὔτως σοφίην ὁ σοφώτατος οὐκ ἀποφεύγει,
ἀλλ᾿ ἔραται, θυμὸν δ᾿ οὐ δύναται τελέσαι.

Wealth and cleverness are ever most difficult for mortals to conquer; for you cannot glut your desire for wealth. Similarly the cleverest man does not shun (more) cleverness, but craves it and cannot satisfy his desire.

The editor, Gerber, glosses σοφίη – which he translates as ‘cleverness’ – with the alternative ‘wisdom.’  Given Theognis’ 6th century dates, I’m curious what prompted him to take what I think of as the 5th century post-sophistic meaning – the negatively connoted ‘cleverness’ – over the older traditional neutral->positive wisdom. 

The poem is less striking in thought and progression if σοφίη – ‘cleverness’ – enters as a term with the same potential ambivalence as wealth.  I instead read the first line as a jarring claim, a setting parallel (in one aspect) of two traditionally separate (even sometimes directly opposed) concepts – the ambivalent πλοῦτος and the praiseworthy σοφίη.  The second line, addressed to the first term πλοῦτος, posits by implication the nature of that connection – man’s insatiability.  The third, now adding the second term σοφίη, completes that alignment.  The first and third lines connect in pulling from martial imagery (ἀμαχώτατοι, ἀποφεύγει), the second and fourth in the language of sensuality and excess (ὑπερκορέσαις, ἔραται).  κορέννῡμι in Homer is used most often with food and wine – as in οἴνοιο κορεσσάμενος καὶ ἐδωδῆς (Il. 19.167) – and its always lurking possibility for excess is pulled to the fore here by Theognis’ prefix ὑπερ.  This same sense of overpowering excess appears in ἔραται in the fourth line – whose senses I am too lazy to gloss.  Finally, the repetition in those lines of θυμὸν – that alongside πλοῦτος and σοφίη is the only term to appear more than once – reveals the core unification point of πλοῦτος and σοφίη, something like the zone of their impact and intersection – man’s unfillable spirit.  

Things I have been too lazy to touch here – the significant switch from 2nd to 3rd person between lines 2 and 3 and Gerber’s unjustified ‘(more)’ in line 3.  I offer my translation instead.

πλοῦτος καὶ σοφίη θνητοῖς ἀμαχώτατοι αἰεί·
οὔτε γὰρ ἂν πλούτου θυμὸν ὑπερκορέσαις·
ὣς δ᾿ αὔτως σοφίην ὁ σοφώτατος οὐκ ἀποφεύγει,
ἀλλ᾿ ἔραται, θυμὸν δ᾿ οὐ δύναται τελέσαι.

Wealth and wisdom are for mortals ever irresistible;
For as you cannot glut your desire for wealth.
So too the wisest man does not flee from wisdom,
but longs for it, and cannot put an end to his desire.

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