Of these the first is etymologically correct (except that it should rather be " stitcher of verse "); the second was suggested by the fact, for which there is early evidence, that the reciter was accustomed to hold a wand in his hand - perhaps, like the sceptre in the Homeric assembly, as a symbol of the right to a hearing.3 The first notice of rhapsody meets us at Sicyon, in the reign of Cleisthenes (600-560 B.C.), who " put down the rhapsodists on account of the poems of Homer, because they are all about Argos and the Argives " (Hdt.
He tells us that the law required the rhapsodists to recite " taking each other up in order (E v7roXip,GEcos E.r/)e ijs), as they still do."
The question as between Solon and Hipparchus cannot be settled; but it is at least clear that a due order of recitation was secured by the presence of a person charged to give the rhapsodists their cue (uiro(iXXav).
The practice of poets or rhapsodists contending for the prize at the great religious festivals is of considerable antiquity, though apparently post-Homeric. It is brought vividly before us in the Hymn to Apollo (see the passage mentioned above), and in two Hymns to Aphrodite (v.
2.2), who applies it to the rhapsodists (` Op p15at pa1rrcm, EirEwz' aot501).
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