I therefore, my most learned grammarian, warn you to beware of the courtesans who want a high price, because
You may see other damsels play the flute,as Epicrates says in his Anti-Lais; in which play he also uses the following expressions concerning the celebrated Lais:—
All playing th' air of Phœbus, or of Jove;
But these play no air save the air of the hawk,
But this fair Lais is both drunk and lazy,Anaxandrides also, in his Old Man's Madness, mentions Lais, and includes her with many other courtesans in a list which he gives in the following lines:-
And cares for nothing, save what she may eat
[p. 912] And drink all day. And she, as I do think,
Has the same fate the eagles have; for they,
When they are young, down from the mountains stoop,
Ravage the flocks and eat the timid hares,
Bearing their prey aloft with fearful might.
But when they're old, on temple tops they perch,
Hungry and helpless; and the soothsayers
Turn such a sight into a prodigy.
And so might Lais well be thought an omen;
For when she was a maiden, young and fresh,
She was quite savage with her wondrous riches;
And you might easier get access to
The satrap Pharnabazus. But at present,
Now that she 's more advanced in years, and age
Has meddled with her body's round proportions,
'Tis easy both to see her and to scorn her.
Now she runs everywhere to get some drink;
She'll take a stater—aye, or a triobolus;
She will admit you, young or old; and is
Become so tame, so utterly subdued,
That she will take the money from your hand.
A. You know Corinthian Lais?
B. To be sure;
A. Well, she had a friend,
By name Anthea.
B. Yes; I knew her well.
A. Well, in those days Lagisca was in beauty;
Theolyta, too, was wondrous fair to see,
And seemed likely to be fairer still;
And Ocimon was beautiful as any.