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This is what I had to say, my friends and messmates, O men far the first of all the Greeks, being what I know concerning the banquets of the ancients. But Plato the philosopher, in the first book of his treatise on the Laws of Banquets, speaks in this manner, describing the whole matter with the greatest accuracy—“And you would never see any where in the country or in the cities which are under the dominion of Lacedæmon, any drinking parties, nor any of their accompaniments, which are calculated to excite as much pleasure as possible. Nor is there any one who would not at once impose as heavy a fine as possible on any one whom he met carrying his revely to the degree of drunkenness; and he would not even excuse him if he had the pretext of the Dionysiac festival of Bacchus. As I have known to be the case among you, in the case of men carried in carriages, and at Tarentum among our own colonists, where I have seen the whole city drunk at the time of the Dionysiac festival. But at Lacedæmon nothing of the sort ever takes place.”
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