previous next

Blepyrus
There will be no more thieves then, eh?

Praxagora
Why steal, if you have a share of everything?

Blepyrus
People will not be robbed any more at night?

Praxagora
Not if you sleep at home. Even if you sleep outdoors there will be no more danger, for all will have the means of living. [670] Besides, if anyone wanted to steal your cloak, you would give it to him yourself. Why not? You will only have to go to the common store and be given a better one.

Blepyrus
There will be no more playing at dice?

Praxagora
What object will there be in playing?

Blepyrus
But what kind of life is it you propose to set up?

Praxagora
The life in common. Athens will become nothing more than a single house, in which everything will belong to everyone; [675] so that everybody will be able to go from one house to the other at pleasure.

Blepyrus
And where will the meals be served?

Praxagora
The law-courts and the porticoes will be turned into dining-halls.

Blepyrus
And what will the speaker's platform be used for?

Praxagora
I shall place the bowls and the ewers there; and young children will sing the glory of the brave from there, also the infamy of cowards, [680] who out of very shame will no longer dare to come to the public meals.

Blepyrus
Well thought out, by Apollo! And what will you do with the urns?

Praxagora
I shall have them taken to the market-place, and standing close to the statue of Harmodius, I shall draw a lot for each citizen, which by its letter will show the place where he must go to dine. Thus, those for whom I have drawn an R will go to the royal portico [685] if it's a T, they will go to the portico of Theseus; if it's an F, to that of the flour-market.

Blepyrus
To cram himself there like a capon?

Praxagora
No, to dine there.

Blepyrus
And the citizen whom the lot has not given a letter showing where he is to dine will be driven off by everyone?


Praxagora
With great solemnity.
But that will not occur. [690] Each man will have plenty; he will not leave the feast until he is well drunk, and then with a chaplet on his head and a torch in his hand; and then the women running to meet you in the crossroads [695] will say, “This way, come to our house, you will find a beautiful young girl there.” —“And I,” another will call from her balcony, “have one so pretty and as white as milk; [700] but before touching her, you must sleep with me.” And the ugly man, watching closely after the handsome fellows, will say, “Hi! friend, where are you running to? Go in, but you must do nothing; [705] it's the ugly and the flat-nosed to whom the law gives the right to make love first; amuse yourself on the porch while you wait, in handling your fig-leaves and playing with yourself.” [710] Well, tell me, does that picture suit you?

Blepyrus
Marvellously well.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Athens (Greece) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (2 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • T. G. Tucker, Commentary on Thucydides: Book 8, 8.90
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: