Now if you consider this, my friend Timocrates, with which of the Greek feasts that you ever heard of do you think this banquet, which has just been described to you, can be compared? When even Antiphanes the comic writer jokingly said in the Œnomaus, or perhaps it is in the Pelops—
What could the Greeks, of sparing tables fond,And Aristophanes, in his Acharnians, extolling the magnificence of the barbarians, says—
Eaters of salads, do? where you may get
Four scanty chops or steaks for one small penny.
But among the ancestors of our nation
Men roasted oxen, deer, and lambs entire,
And last of all the cook, outdoing all
His predecessors, set before the king
A roasted camel, smoking, hump and all.
A. Then he received me, and to dinner ask'd me,And Anaxandrides, in his Protesilaus, ridiculing the feast made at the marriage of Iphicrates when he married the daughter of Cotys king of the Thracians, says—
And set before us whole fat oxen roasted.
B. Who ever saw a roasted ox? The braggart!
A. I'll take my oath he likewise put on table
A bird three times as burly as Cleonymus;
Its name, I well remember, was Th' Impostor.