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"The Greek word pharmakon poses a quandary for translators- it is both a remedy and a poison." --Sholem Stein

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  1. A state of not knowing what to decide; a state of difficulty or perplexity; a state of uncertainty, hesitation or puzzlement; a pickle; a predicament.
  2. A dilemma, a difficult decision or choice.
    • 1995, Robert Frost, Collected Poems, Prose & Plays, page 475
      To quote the oracle of Delphi, / Love thou thy neighbor as thyself, aye, / And hate him as thyself thou hatest. / There quandary is at its greatest.
    • 1995, Douglas N. Walton & Erik C. W. Krabbe, Commitment in Dialogue: Basic Concepts of Interpersonal Reasoning‎, page 54
      But we may suppose that John has set his priorities in such a way that the quandary is spurious.
    • 2000, Carol Ann Strip & Gretchen Hirsch, Helping Gifted Children Soar‎, page 208
      What a difficult quandary for a bright, talented child!
    • 2004, Jennifer Traig, Devil in the Details: Scenes from an Obsessive Girlhood‎, page 181
      Then I would begin contemplating the next quandary: "Does the Torah say it's okay to portray a hooker, and is a heart of gold a mitigating factor?"


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