These lines conclude the account of Hermes inventing the primitive method of producing fire by friction, and it is evident that the writer had in mind σ 308:
περ δ ξλα κγχανα θ;καν,
αα πλαι περκηλα, νον κεκεασμνα χαλκ,
cf. also ε 240. Gemoll accordingly in his edition (1886) read αα λαβν, and for so doing was rebuked by Messrs. S. and A. in their best dogmatic manner: ‘Gemoll's αα cannot be accepted; ολα is sound, though the meaning is not certain.’ In other words: ‘Whether ολα makes sense or nonsense, it is right.’ Finally, they say that ολα probably means ‘whole’, and this translation is, I think, confirmed by l. 137; but then it follows that the hymn-writer was flatly contradicting the κεκεασμνα in Homer's line, and knew no more about fire-lighting than these trenchant editors. Ignition fuel has a character of its own, and from this point of view Gemoll has the advantage.