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Thus did she speak, and they did even as she had said: twenty of them went to the fountain for water, and the others set themselves busily to work about the house. The men who were in attendance on the suitors also came up and began chopping firewood. By and by the women returned from the fountain, and the swineherd came after them with the three best pigs he could pick out. These he let feed about the premises, and then he said with good humor to Odysseus, "Stranger, are the suitors treating you any better now, or are they as insolent as ever?"

"May heaven," answered Odysseus, "requite to them the wickedness with which they deal high-handedly in another man's house without any sense of shame [aidôs]."

Thus did they converse; meanwhile Melanthios the goatherd came up, for he too was bringing in his best goats for the suitors’ dinner; and he had two shepherds with him. They tied the goats up under the gatehouse, and then Melanthios began gibing at Odysseus. "Are you still here, stranger," said he, "to pester people by begging about the house? Why can you not go elsewhere? You and I shall not come to an understanding before we have given each other a taste of our fists. You beg without any sense of decency [kosmos]: are there not feasts elsewhere among the Achaeans, as well as here?"

Odysseus made no answer, but bowed his head and brooded. Then a third man, Philoitios, joined them, who was bringing in a barren heifer and some goats. These were brought over by the boatmen who are there to take people over when any one comes to them. So Philoitios made his heifer and his goats secure under the gatehouse, and then went up to the swineherd. "Who, Swineherd," said he, "is this stranger that is lately come here? Is he one of your men? What is his family? Where does he come from? Poor fellow, he looks as if he had been some great man, but the gods give sorrow to whom they will - even to kings if it so pleases them

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  • Cross-references to this page (1):
    • Raphael Kühner, Friedrich Blass, Ausführliche Grammatik der Griechischen Sprache, Dritte Deklination.
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