Dionysus is rowing throughout the lake the the Underworld come a steady rhythm as soon as he is interrupted through the frog chorus, to sing to the accompaniment that the aulos (a dual pipe, not a banjo) – standardly the instrument provided to companion the dramatic chorus, and likewise used by the keleustēs (controller) to set the rhythm because that rowers in Athenian trirem

es. The frogs in the underworld (i.e. Ex-frogs) describe brekekekex koax koax as the track they used to sing ‘in the marshland increase above’ — but they space singing it at a pace too rapid for Dionysus’s comfort.

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Eventually Dionysus realises the only means to assert his very own rhythm is to eliminate the aulos from the keleustēs. That snatches it, leave the frogs tuneless. Without music, their utterance has far less power, but they effort to assert your rhythm through chanting unmusically. Dionysus is maybe to loss the frogs (who clearly represent aulos-players because of the method their cheeks inflate) by chanting end them at his own slower pace until they space silenced.

This translation provides the Greek message in verse, abridged and re-cast in a way that functions for power in English. Ns attempt a one-man rendition here: https://www.facebook.com/li.dionysus/videos/2881346528654307

FROGS singing in ~ a rapid pace

Brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax, brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax!

We youngsters of the fountain and the lake,let ours full-throated chorus come awake!Hear the aulos blaring outto the loud and piercing shoutof the song we used to love,in the marshland increase above.

Brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax, brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax!

DIONYSUS speaking at a slow pace

Oh dear, oh dear, I execute declareyour beat’s too quick for me come bear.Shut up through your infernal hum,I’m getting blisters on my bum.You rowdy disrespectful lot,it appears that you don’t treatment a jot!

FROGS singing to a rapid beat

Brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax, brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax!

DIONYSUS speaking at slow-moving pace

Damn you, and your ko-axing too,it’s nothing yet ko-ax with you.My hands room chafed and blistered sore;my cheeks listed below are bursting more,and something’s coming with the cracks —


Brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax, brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax!


O tuneful frogs, don’t carry out this, don’t!Please curb her song.


♫ hard luck, us won’t!

Brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax,brekekekex, ko-ax, ko-ax!

DIONYSUSseizes the aulos from the frog-aulete

Look, currently I’ve seized your track from you.

FROGS speaking fast

This action way the finish of us!Can’t us some deteriorate discuss?

DIONYSUS in slower rhythm 

Far worse because that me mine day would certainly goif i exploded while ns row!Your music’s gone, your cupboard’s bare,you croak away, because that all ns care.

FROGS croaking fast

Fine, we’ll croak and croak ours hearts out,all day long we’ll croak our hearts out!

DIONYSUS asserting his slower pace

That isn’t going to success the day,for I will croak and also croak away.Bre-ke-ke-kex ko-ax ko-ax!Bre-ke-ke-kex ko-ax ko-ax!

The frogs fall silent. At last those pesky frogs room making tracks!I had to put an end to their ko-ax.

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A full elaboration that this explanation (with Greek text and also musical and also metrical suggestions) have the right to be uncovered in mine chapter, ‘The music Frogs in Frogs’ (2020), in Ancient Greek Comedy eds. A. Fries and D. Kanellakis (De Gruyter), 187-198.