previous next

We forbid the gods, the sons of Zeus, to pass through our city [1265] and the mortals to send them the smoke of their sacrifices by this road.

It's odd that the messenger [1270] we sent to the mortals has never returned.

The Herald enters, wearing a golden garland on his head.

Oh! blessed Pisthetaerus, very wise, very illustrious, very gracious, thrice happy, very ... Come, prompt me, somebody, do

Get to your story!

[1275] All peoples are filled with admiration for your wisdom, and they award you this golden crown.

I accept it. But tell me, why do the people admire me?

Oh you, who have founded so illustrious a city in the air, you know not in what esteem men hold you and how many there are who burn with desire to dwell in it. [1280] Before your city was built, all men had a mania for Sparta; long hair and fasting were held in honor, men went dirty like Socrates and carried staves. Now all is changed. [1285] Firstly, as soon as it's dawn, they all spring out of bed together to go and seek their food, the same as you do; then they fly off towards the notices and finally devour the decrees. [1290] The bird-madness is so clear that many actually bear the names of birds. There is a halting victualler, who styles himself the partridge; Menippus calls himself the swallow; Opuntius the one-eyed crow; [1295] Philocles the lark; Theogenes the fox-goose; Lycurgus the ibis; Chaerephon the bat; Syracosius the magpie; Midias the quail; indeed he looks like a quail that has been hit hard on the head. [1300] Out of love for the birds they repeat all the songs which concern the swallow, the teal, the goose or the pigeon; in each verse you see wings, or at all events a few feathers. This is what is happening down there. [1305] Finally, there are more than ten thousand folk who are coming here from earth to ask you for feathers and hooked claws; so, mind you supply yourself with wings for the immigrants.

Ah! by Zeus, there's no time for idling. To some slaves. Go as quick as possible and fill every hamper, [1310] every basket you can find with wings. Manes will bring them to me outside the walls, where I will welcome those who present themselves.

load focus Greek (F.W. Hall and W.M. Geldart, 1907)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Sparta (Greece) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (2 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: