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FLORUS, who loved the ancient customs, would not let the table be removed quite empty, but always left some meat upon it; declaring likewise that his father and grandfather were not only curious in this matter, but would never suffer the lamp after supper to be put out,—a thing about which the ancient Romans were very precise,—while those of the present day extinguish it immediately after supper, that they may lose no oil. Eustrophus the Athenian being present said: What could they get by that, unless they knew the cunning trick of our Polycharmus, who, after long deliberation how to find out a way to prevent the servants' stealing of the oil, at last with a great deal of difficulty happened upon this: As soon as you have put out the lamp, fill it up, and the next morning look carefully whether it remains full. Then Florus with a smile replied: Well, since we are agreed about that, let us enquire for what reason the ancients were so careful about their tables and their lamps.

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load focus Greek (Gregorius N. Bernardakis, 1892)
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