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Cleon
Oh! guardian goddess of our city! oh! Athena if it be true [765] that next to Lysicles, Cynna and Salabaccho none have done so much good for the Athenian people as I, suffer me to continue to be fed at the Prytaneum without working; but if I hate you, if I am not ready to fight in your defence alone and against all, may I perish, be sawn to bits alive and my skin cut up into thongs.

Sausage-Seller
And I, Demos, if it be not true, that I love and cherish you, [770] may I be cooked in a stew; and if that is not saying enough, may I be grated on this table with some cheese and then hashed, may a hook be passed through my balls and let me be dragged thus to the Ceramicus!

Cleon
Is it possible, Demos, to love you more than I do? And firstly, as long as you have governed with my consent, have I not filled your [775] treasury, putting pressure on some, torturing others or begging of them, indifferent to the opinion of private individuals, and solely anxious to please you?

Sausage-Seller
There is nothing so wonderful in all that, Demos; I will do as much; I will thieve the bread of others to serve up to you. No, he has neither love for you nor kindly feeling; [780] his only care is to warm himself with your wood, and I will prove it. You, who, sword in hand, saved Attica from the Median yoke at Marathon; you, whose glorious triumphs we love to extol unceasingly, look, he cares little whether he sees you seated uncomfortably upon a stone; whereas I, I bring you this cushion, which I have sewn with my own hands. [785] Rise and try this nice soft seat. Did you not put enough strain on your bottom at Salamis?

He gives Demos the cushion; Demos sits on it.

Demos
Who are you then? Can you be of the race of Harmodius? Upon my faith, that is nobly done and like a true friend of Demos.

Cleon
Petty flattery to prove him your goodwill!

Sausage-Seller
But you have caught him with even smaller baits!

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    • Basil L. Gildersleeve, Syntax of Classical Greek, The Article
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