Philetas also, the Coin poet, was a very thin man; so that, by reason of the leanness of his body, he used to wear balls made of lead fastened to his feet, to prevent himself from being blown over by the wind. And Polemo, surnamed Periegetes, in his treatise on Wonderful People and Things, says that Archestratus the soothsayer, being taken prisoner by the enemy, and being put into the scale, was found to weigh only one obol, so very thin was he. The same man also relates that Panaretus never had occasion to consult a physician, but that he used to be a pupil of Arcesilaus the philosopher; and that he was a companion of Ptolemy Euergetes, receiving from him a salary of twelve talents every year. And he was the thinnest of men, though he never had any illness all his life. But Metrodorus the Scepsian, in the second book of his treatise on the Art of Training, says that Hipponax the poet was not only very diminutive in person, but also very thin; and that he, nevertheless, was so strong in his sinews, that, among other feats of strength, he could throw an empty oil cruise an extraordinary distance, although light bodies are not easy to be propelled violently, because they cannot cut the air so well. Philippides, also, was extremely thin, against whom there is an oration extant of Hyperides the orator, who says that he was one of those men who governed the state. And he was very insignificant in appearance by reason of his thinness, as Hyperides has related. And Alexis, in his Thesprotians, said—
O Mercury, sent by the gods above,And Aristophon, in his play called Plato, says—
You who've obtained Philippides by lot;
And you, too, eye of darkly-robed night.
A. I will within these three days make this manAnd Menander, in his Passion, says— [p. 885]
Thinner than e'en Philippides.
B. How so?
Can you kill men in such a very short time?
If hunger should attack your well-shaped person,And the word πεφιλιππιδῶσθαι was used for being extremely thin, as we find in Alexis; who, in his Women taking Mandragora, says—
'Twould make you thinner than Philippides.
A. You must be ill. You are, by Jove, the veryAt all events, it is much better to look like that, than to be like the man of whom Antiphanes in his Aeolus says—
Leanest of sparrows—a complete Philippides (πεφιλιππίδωσαι).
B. Don't tell me such strange things: I'm all but dead.
A. I pity your sad case.
This man then, such a sot and glutton is he,And Heraclides of Pontus, in his treatise on Pleasure, says that Dinias the perfumer gave himself up to love because of his luxury, and spent a vast sum of money on it; and when, at last, he failed in his desires, out of grief he mutilated himself, his unbridled luxury bringing him into this trouble.
And so enormous is his size of body,
Is called by all his countrymen the Bladder.