Plutarch having said this, and being applauded by every one, asked for a phiala, from which he made a libation to the Muses, and to Mnemosyne their mother, and drank the health of every one present, saying,—As if any one, taking a cup in his hand, being a rich man, were to make a present of it, foaming over with the juice of the vine;"— and drinking not only to the young bridegroom, but also to all his friends; and he gave the cup to the boy, desiring him to carry it round to every one, saying that this was the proper meaning of the phrase κύκλῳ πίνειν, reciting the verses of Menander in his Perinthian Woman—
And the old woman did not leave untouch'dAnd again, in his Fanatical Woman, he says— [p. 807]
One single cup, but drank of all that came.
And then again she carries round to allAnd Euripides, in his Cretan Women, says—
A cup of unmix'd wine.
Farewell all other things, as longAnd then, when Leonidas the grammarian demanded a larger cup, and said,—Let us drink hard (κρατηρίζωμεν), my friends, (for that was the word which Lysanias the Cyrenean says that Herodorus used to apply to drinking parties, when he says, “But when they had finished the sacrifice they turned to the banquet, and to craters, and prayers, and peas;” and the poet, who was the author of the poem called the Buffoons—a play which Duris says that the wise Plato always had in his hands—says, somewhere, ἐκεκρατηρίχημες, for “we had drunk;”) But now, in the name of the gods, said Pontianus, you are drinking in a manner which is scarcely becoming, out of large cups, having that most delightful and witty author Xenophon before your eyes, who in his Banquet says,—“But Socrates, in his turn, said, But it seems to me now, O men, that we ought to drink hard. For wine, in reality, while it moistens the spirit, lulls the griefs to sleep as mandragora does men; but it awakens all cheerful feelings, as oil does fire. And it appears to me that the bodies of men are liable to the same influences which affect the bodies of those things which grow in the ground; for the very plants, when God gives them too much to drink, cannot hold up their heads, nor can they expand at their proper seasons. But when they drink just as much as is good for them, and no more, then they grow in an upright attitude, and flourish, and come in a flourishing state to produce fruit. And so, too, in our case, if we take too much drink all at once, our bodies and our minds rapidly get disordered, and we cannot even breathe correctly, much less speak. But if our slaves bedew us (to use Gorgias-like language) in small quantities with small cups, then we are not compelled to be intoxicated by the wine; but being gently induced, we proceed to a merry and cheerful temperament.”
As cups of wine go freely round.