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My brother Lamprias, being of a scoffing, jeering nature, said: Since we are in a trifling humor, I can show that the Latin names of these meals are a thousand times more proper than the Greek; δεῖπνον, suppler, they call coena (κοῖνα διὰ τὴν κοινωνίαν), from community; because they took their ἄριστον by themselves, but their coena with their friends. ῎Αριστον, dinner, they call prandium, from the time of the day; for ἔνδιον signifies noon-tide, and to rest after dinner is expressed by ἐνδιάζειν; or else by prandium they denote a bit taken in the morning, πρὶν ἐνδεεῖς γενέσθαι, before they have need of any. And not to mention stragula from στρώματα, vinum from οἶνος, oleum from ἔλαιον, mel from μέλι, gustare from γεύσασθαι, propinare from προπίνειν, and a great [p. 419] many more words which they have plainly borrowed from the Greeks,—who can deny but that they have taken their comessatio, banqueting, from our κῶμος, and miscere, to mingle, from the Greeks too? Thus in Homer, τῆς ἐν μέσω θέσεως, placing it in the middle; bread, panem, from satisfying πεῖναν, hunger; a garland, coronam, from κάρηνον, the head;—and Homer somewhat likens κράνος, a head-piece, to a garland;—caedere to beat, from δέρειν; and dentes, teeth, from ὀδόντας; lips they call labra, from λαμβάνειν τῆν βόραν δἰ αὐτῶν, taking our victuals with them. Therefore we must either hear such fooleries as these without laughing, or not give them so ready access by means of words....
1 Odyss. X. 356.
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