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Before each one of the guests in Homer is placed a separate cup. Demodocus has a basket and a table and a cup placed before him,
To drink whene'er his soul desired.1
Again the goblets are crowned with drink; that is to say, they are filled so that the liquor stands above the brim, and the cups have a sort of crown of wine on them. Now the cupbearers filled them so for the sake of the omen; and then they pour out
πᾶσιν, ἐπαρξάμενοι δεπάεσσιν,2
the word πᾶσιν referring not to the cups but to the men. Accordingly Alcinous says to Pontonous,
Let all around the due libation pay
To Jove, who guides the wanderer on his way;3
and then he goes on,
All drink the juice that glads the heart of man.
And due honour is paid at those banquets to all the most eminent men. Accordingly, Tydides is honoured with great quantities of meat and wine; and Ajax receives the compliment of a whole chine of beef. And the kings are treated in the same way:—
A rump of beef they set before the king:4
[p. 22] that is, before Menelaus. And in like manner he honours Idomeneus and Agamemnon
With ever brimming cups of rosy wine.5
And Sarpedon, among the Lycians, receives the same respect, and has the highest seat, and the most meat.

They had also a way of saluting in drinking one another's health; and so even the gods,

In golden goblets pledged each other's health;
that is, they took one another by the right hand while drinking. And so some one δείδεκτ᾽ ᾿αχιλλέα, which is the same as if he had said ἐδεξιοῦτο, that is, took him by the right hand. He drank to him, proffering him the goblet in his right hand. They also gave some of their own portion to those to whom they wished to show attention; as, Ulysses having cut off a piece of chine of beef which was set before himself, sent it to Demodocus.

1 Odyss. vii. 70.

2 Iliad, i. 471.

3 Odyss. vii. 179.

4 Il. iv. 65.

5 Iliad, iv. 3.

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