And Diodorus of Sinope, in his Female Flute-player, says—
When any one, O Crito, drinks ten cups,And it was not without some wit that Lysander the Spartan, as Hegesander relates in his Commentaries, when some vintners sold wine which had been much watered in hi camp, ordered some one to supply it properly tempered, that his men might buy it with less water in it. And Alexis has said something which comes to nearly the same thing, in his Aesop; thus—
Consider, I do beg you, whether he
Who never once allows the wine to pass
Is in a fit state for discussion.
A. That is a good idea of yours, O Solon,
And cleverly imagined, which you have
Adopted in your city.
S. What is that?
A. You don't let men drink neat wine at their feasts.
S. Why, if I did, 'twould not be very easy
For men to get it, when the innkeepers
[p. 682] Water it ere it comes out of the waggon.
No doubt they do not do so to make money,
But only out of prudent care for those
Who buy the liquor; so that they may have
Their heads from every pang of headache free.
This now is, as you see, a Grecian drink;
So that men, drinking cups of moderate strength,
May chat and gossip cheerfully with each other:
For too much water is more like a bath
Than like a wine-cup; and the wine-cooler
Mix'd with the cask, my friend, is death itself.