I put them in mind that some imagine that θερμόν, hot, is signified by ζωρότερον, and that hotter means simply faster, as when we command servants to bestir themselves more hotly or in hotter haste. But I must confess, your dispute is frivolous, since it is raised upon this supposition, that if ζωρότερον signifies more pure wine, Achilles's command would be absurd, as Zoilus of Amphipolis imagined. For first he did not consider that Achilles saw Phoenix and Ulysses to be old men, who are not pleased with diluted wine, and upon that account forbade any mixture. Besides, having been Chiron's scholar, and from him having learned the rules of diet, he considered that weaker and more diluted liquors were fittest for those bodies that lay at ease, and were not employed in their customary exercise or labor. Thus with the other provender he gave his horses smallage, [p. 323] and this upon very good reason; for horses that lie still grow sore in their feet, and smallage is the best remedy in the world against that. And you will not find smallage or any thing of the same nature given to any other horses in the whole Iliad. Thus Achilles, being skilled in physic, provided suitable provender for his horses, and used the lightest diet himself, as the fittest whilst he lay at ease. But those that had been wearied all day in fight he did not think convenient to treat like those that had lain at ease, but commanded more pure and stronger wine to be prepared. Besides, Achilles doth not appear to be naturally addicted to drinking, but he was of a haughty inexorable temper.
No pleasant humor, no soft mind he bore,And in another place very plainly Homer says, that
But was all fire and rage.
Many a sleepless night he knew.2Now little sleep cannot content those that drink strong liquors; and in his railing at Agamemnon, the first ill name he gives him is drunkard, proposing his great drinking as the chiefest of his faults. And for these reasons it is likely that, when they came, he thought his usual mixture too weak and not convenient for them.