But you prefer having all the objects of your love shaved and hairless. And this custom of shaving the beard originated in the age of Alexander, as Chrysippus tells us in the fourth book of his treatise on The Beautiful and on Pleasure. And I think it will not be unseasonable if I quote what he says; for he is an author of whom I am very fond, on account of his great learning and his gentle good-humoured disposition. And this is the language of the philosopher:— “The custom of shaving the beard was introduced in the time of Alexander, for the people in earlier times did not practise it; and Timotheus the flute-player used to play on the flute having a very long beard. And at Athens they even now remember that the man who first shaved his chin, (and he is not a very ancient man indeed,) was given the surname of κόρσης;1: on which account Alexis says—
Do you see any man whose beard has beenAnd Diogenes, when he saw some one once whose chin was smooth, said, 'I am afraid you think you have great ground to accuse nature, for having made you a man and not a woman.' And once, when he saw another man, riding a horse, who was shaved in the same manner, and perfumed all over, and clothed, too, in a fashion corresponding to those particulars, he said that he had often asked what a ῾ιππόπορνος was; and now he had found out. And at Rhodes, though there is a law against shaving, still no one ever prosecutes another for doing so, as the whole population is shaved. And at Byzantium, though there is a penalty to which any barber is liable who is possessed of a razor, still every one uses a razor none the less for that law.” And this is the statement of the admirable Chrysippus.
Removed by sharp pitch-plasters or by razors?
In one of these two ways he may be spoken of:
Either he seems to me to think of war,
And so to be rehearsing acts of fierce
Hostility against his beard and chin;
Or else he's some complaint of wealthy men.
For how, I pray you, do your beards annoy you?—
Beards by which best you may be known as men?
Unless, indeed, you're planning now some deed
Unworthy of the character of men.