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Aristophanes Index


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PLUTUS by Aristophanes, Part 18

CHREMYLUS
Yet, since you liked the wine, you should now consume the lees.
YOUTH
But these lees are quite rancid and fusty.
CHREMYLUS
Pass them through a straining-cloth; they'll clarify.
YOUTH
But I want to go in with you to offer these chaplets to the god.
OLD WOMAN
And I too have something to tell him.
YOUTH
Then I won't enter.
CHREMYLUS
Come, have no fear; she won't harm you.
YOUTH
That's true; I've been managing the old bark so long.
OLD WOMAN
Go in; Ill follow after you.
(They enter the house.)
CHREMYLUS
Good gods! that old hag has fastened herself to her youth like a
limpet to its rock.
(He follows them in.)

(Interlude of dancing by the CHORUS.)

(HERMES enters and begins knocking on the door.)
CARIO (opening the door)
Who is knocking at the door? Halloa! I see no one; it was then
by chance it gave forth that plaintive tone.
Hermes (to CARIO, who is about to close the door)
Cario! stop!
CARIO
Eh! friend, was it you who knocked so loudly? Tell me.
Hermes
No, I was going to knock and you forestalled me by opening.
Come, call your master quick, then his wife and his children, then his
slave and his dog, then yourself and his pig.
CARIO
And what's it all about?
Hermes
It's about this, rascal! Zeus wants to serve you all with the same
sauce and hurl the lot of you into the Barathrum.
CARIO (aside)
Have a care for your tongue, you bearer of ill tidings! (To
Hermes) But why does he want to treat us in that scurvy fashion?
Hermes
Because you have committed the most dreadful crime. Since Plutus
has recovered his sight, there is nothing for us other gods, neither
incense, nor laurels, nor cakes, nor victims, nor anything in the
world.
CARIO
And you will never be offered anything more; you governed us too
ill
Hermes
I care nothing at all about the other gods, but it's myself. I
tell you I am dying of hunger.
CARIO
That's reasoning like a wise fellow.
Hermes
Formerly, from earliest dawn, I was offered all sorts of good
things in the wine-shops,-wine-cakes, honey, dried figs, in short,
dishes worthy of Hermes. Now, I lie the livelong day on my back,
with my legs in the air, famishing.
CARIO
And quite right too, for you often had them punished who treated
you so well.
Hermes
Ah! the lovely cake they used to knead for me on the fourth of the
month!
CARIO
You recall it vainly; your regrets are useless!
Hermes
Ah! the ham I was wont to devour!
CARIO
Well then! make use of your legs and hop on one leg upon the
wine-skin, to while away the time.
Hermes
Oh! the grilled entrails I used to swallow down!
CARIO
Your own have got the colic, I think
Hermes
Oh! the delicious tipple, half-wine, half-water!
CARIO
Here, take this and be off. (He farts.)
Hermes (in tragic style)
Would you render service to the friend that loves you?
CARIO
Willingly, if I can.
Hermes
Give me some well-baked bread and a big hunk of the victims they
are sacrificing in your house.
CARIO
That would be stealing.
Hermes
Do you forget, then, how I used to take care he knew nothing about
it when you were stealing something from your master?
CARIO
Because I used to share it with you, you rogue; some cake or other
always came your way,

 

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