But concerning the name of Mania, which we have just mentioned, the same Machon says this:—
Some one perhaps of those who hear this now,[p. 925]
May fairly wonder how it came to pass
That an Athenian woman had a name,
Or e'en a nickname, such as Mania.
For 'tis disgraceful for a woman thus
To bear a Phrygian name; she being, too,
A courtesan from the very heart of Greece.
And how came she to sink the city of Athens,
By which all other nations are much sway'd?
The fact is that her name from early childhood
Was this—Melitta. And as she grew up
A trifle shorter than her playfellows,
But with a sweet voice and engaging manners,
And with such beauty and excellence of face
As made a deep impression upon all men,
She 'd many lovers, foreigners and citizens.
So that when any conversation
Arose about this woman, each man said,
The fair Melitta was his madness (μανία.) Aye,
And she herself contributed to this name;
For when she jested she would oft repeat
This word μανία; and when in sport she blamed
Or praised any one, she would bring in,
In either sentence, this word μανία.
So some one of her lovers, dwelling on
The word, appears to have nicknamed the girl
Mania; and this extra name prevailed
More than her real one. It seems, besides,
That Mania was afflicted with the stone.