But Theagenes of Thasos, the athlete, ate a bull single-handed, as Posidippus tells us in his Epigrams.
And as I'd undertaken, I did eatAnd Milo of Crotona, as Theodorus of Hierapolis tells us in his book upon Games, ate twenty minæ1 weight of meat, and an equal quantity of bread, and drank three choes2 of wine. And once at Olympia he took a four year old bull on his shoulders, and carried it all round the course, and after that he killed it and cut it up, and ate it all up by himself in one day. And Titormus the Aetolian had a contest with him as to which could eat an ox with the greatest speed, as Alexander the Aetolian relates. But Phylarchus, in the third book of his Histories, says that Milo, while lying down before the altar of Jupiter, ate a bull, on which account Dorieus the poet made the following epigram on him:—
A Thracian bull. My own poor native land
Of Thasos could not have purvey'd a meal
Sufficient for the hunger of Theagenes.
I ate all I could get, then ask'd for more.
And, therefore, here you see, I stand in brass,
Holding my right hand forth; put something in it.
Milo could lift enormous weights from earth,But Astydamas the Milesian, having gained the victory at Olympia three times in the pancratium, being once invited to supper by Ariobarzanes the Persian, when he had come, offered to eat everything that had been prepared for the whole party, and did eat it. And when, Theodorus relates, the Persian entreated him to do something suitable to his enormous strength, he broke off a large brazen ornament in the shape of a lentil from the couch and crushed it in his hand. And when he died, and when his body was burnt, one urn would not contain his bones, and scarcely two could do so. And they say that the dinner which he ate by himself at Ariobarzanes's table had been prepared for nine persons.
A heifer four years old, at Jove's high feast,
And on his shoulders the huge beast he bore,
As it had been a young and little lamb,
All round the wondering crowd of standers by.
But he did still a greater feat than this,
[p. 651] Before the altar of Olympian Jove;
For there he bore aloft an untamed bull
In the procession, then he cut it up,
And by himself ate every bit of it.