Homer, too, represents Ulysses as a great eater, and a very voracious man, when he says—
What histories of toil I could declare,For in these lines his gluttony appears prodigious, when it induces him on so unseasonable an occasion to utter apophthegms about his stomach. For he ought, if he had been ever so hungry, to have endured it, or at all events to have [p. 650] been moderate in his food. But this last passage shows the extreme voracity and gluttony of the man—
But still long-wearied nature wants repair.1
Spent with fatigue and shrunk with pining fast,
My craving bowels still require repast;
Howe'er the noble suffering mind may grieve
Its load of anguish, and disdain to live,
Necessity demands our daily bread;
Hunger is insolent and will be fed.
For all my mind is overwhelm'd with care,For even the notorious Sardanapalus would hardly have ventured to give utterance to such sentiments as those. Moreover, when Ulysses was an old man—
But hunger is the worst of griefs to bear;
Still does my stomach bid me eat and drink,
Lest on my sorrows I too deeply think.
Food makes me all my sufferings forget,
And fear not those which may surround me yet.
Voraciously he endless dishes ate,
And quaff'd unceasing cups of wine. . .