And there was nothing extraordinary in the ancient cooks being experienced in sacrifices. At all events, they usually managed all marriage feasts and sacrifices. On which account Menander, in his Flatterer, introduces a cook, who on the fourth day of the month had been ministering in the festival of Aphrodite Pandemus, using the following language—
Now a libation. Boy, distribute roundAnd another cook, in Simonides, says—
The entrails. Whither are you looking now?
Now a libation—quick! you Sosia, quick!
[p. 1055] Quick! a libation. That will do; now pour.
First let us pray to the Olympian gods,
And now to all the Olympian goddesses:
Meantime address them; pray them all to give
Us safety, health, and all good things in future,
And full enjoyment of all present happiness.
Such shall be now our prayers.
And how I roasted, how I carved the meat,And the letter of Olympias to Alexander mentions the great experience of cooks in these matters. For, his mother having been entreated by him to buy him a cook who had experience in sacrifices, proceeds to say, “Accept the cook Pelignas from your mother; for he is thoroughly acquainted with the manner in which all your ancestral sacrifices, and all the mysterious rites, and all the sacred mysteries connected with the worship of Bacchus are performed, and every other sacrifice which Olympias practises he knows. Do not then disregard him, but accept him, and send him back again to me at as early a period as possible.”
You know: what is there that I can't do well?