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[71] Trimalchio cheered up at this dispute and said,“Ah, my friends, a slave is a man and drank his mother's milk like ourselves, even if cruel fate has trodden him down. Yes, and if I live they shall soon taste the water of freedom. In fact I am setting them all free in my will. I am leaving a property and his good woman to Philargyrus as well, and to Cario a block of buildings, and his manumission fees, and a bed and bedding. I am making Fortunata my heir, and I recommend her to all my friends. I am making all this known so that my slaves may love me now as it I were dead.” They all began to thank their master for his kindness, when he turned serious, and had a copy of the will brought in, which he read aloud from beginning to end, while the slaves moaned and groaned. Then he looked at Habinnas and said, “Now tell me, my dear friend: you will erect a monument as I have directed? I beg you earnestly to put up round the feet of my statue my little dog, and some wreaths, and bottles of perfume, and all the fights of Petraites,1 [p. 139] so that your kindness may bring me a life after death; and I want the monument to have a frontage of one hundred feet and to be two hundred feet in depth. For I should like to have all kinds of fruit growing round my ashes, and plenty of vines. It is quite wrong for a man to decorate his house while he is alive, and not to trouble about the house where he must make a longer stay. So above all things I want added to the inscription, 'This monument is not to descend to my heir.' I shall certainly take care to provide in my will against any injury being done to me when I am dead. I am appointing one of the freedmen to be caretaker of the tomb and prevent the common people from running up and defiling it. I beg you to put ships in full sail on the monument, and me sitting in official robes on my official seat, wearing five gold rings and distributing coin publicly out of a bag;2 you remember that I gave a free dinner worth two denarii a head. I should like a dining-room table put in too, if you can arrange it. And let me have the whole people there enjoying themselves. On my right hand put a statue of dear Fortunata holding a dove, and let her be leading a little dog with a waistband on; and my dear little boy, and big jars sealed with gypsum, so that the wine may not run out. And have a broken urn carved with a boy weeping over it. And a sundial in the middle, so that anyone who looks at the time will read my name whether he likes it or[p. 141] not. And again, please think carefully whether this in scription seems to you quite appropriate: 'Here lieth Caius Pompeius Trimalchio, freedman of Maecenas.3 The degree of Priest of Augustus was conferred upon him in his absence. He might have been attendant on any magistrate in Rome, but refused it.4 God-fearing, gallant, constant, he started with very little and left thirty millions. He never listened to a philosopher. Fare thee well, Trimalchio: and thou too, passer-by.” '

1 See note, p. 91.

2 Members of the college of Augustus were allowed on important public occasions to sit on a throne and to wear a toga praetexta. Trimalchio may have earned the right to wear gold rings by giving a public dinner: after his term of office as a Sevir Augusti (see note, p. 43) expired, he would not be entitled to wear them. See c. 32, where he wears a ring made to look like gold at a distance.

3 Trimalchio was allowed to have this name because he had been in the service of a master named Maecenas before he became a slave in the family of the Pompeii. Slaves were allowed to retain their old master's name on transfer in order to prevent confusion arising from similarities in their names where they were very numerous.

4 Trimalchio boasts that if he had chosen to go to Rome as a freedman he could have become a member of the decuries, the orders or guilds which supplied the lower branches of the public service, e.g. lictors, scribes, criers, and street officers.

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