There is a great deal of exertion and labour in a game of ball, and it causes great straining of the neck and shoulders. Antiphanes says,
Wretch that I am, my neck's so stiff;and again Antiphanes describes the φαινίνδα thus:—
The player takes the ball elate,And it was called φαινίνδα from the rapid motion of those who played, or else because its inventor, as Juba the Mauritanian says, was Phænestius, a master of gymnastics. And Antiphanes,
And gives it safely to his mate,
Avoids the blows of th' other side,
And shouts to see them hitting wide;
List to the cries, “Hit here,” “hit there,” '
“Too far,” “too high,” “that is not fair,” —
See every man with ardour burns
To make good strokes and quick returns.
To play Phæninda at Ph$anestius' school.And those who played paid great attention to elegance of motion and attitude; and accordingly Demoxenus says:—
A youth I saw was playing ball,Ctesibius also of Chalcis, a philosopher, was no bad player. And there were many of the friends of Antigonus the king who used to take their coats off and play ball with him. Timocrates, too, the Lacedæmonian, wrote a book on playing ball.
Seventeen years of age and tall;
From Cos he came, and well I wot
The Gods look kindly on that spot.
For when he took the ball or threw it,
So pleased were all of us to view it,
We all cried out; so great his grace,
Such frank good humour in his face,
That every time he spoke or moved,
All felt as if that youth they loved.
Sure ne'er before had these eyes seen,
Nor ever since, so fair a mien;
Had I staid long most sad my plight
Had been to lose my wits outright,
And even now the recollection
Disturbs my senses' calm reflection.