The Ancient Library
 
This book contains Greek and English on facing pages.

Scanned text contains errors.

ON SACRIFICES

in view of what the dolts do at their sacrifices and their feasts and processions in honour of the gods, what they pray for and vow, and what opinions they hold about the gods, I doubt if anyone is so gloomy and woe-begone that he will not laugh to see the idiocy of their actions. Indeed, long before he laughs, I think, he will ask himself whether he

o * *

should call them devout or, on the contrary, irreligious and pestilent, inasmuch as they have taken it for granted that the gods are so low and mean as to stand in need of men and to enjoy being flattered and to get angry when they are slighted.

Anyhow, the Aetolian incidents—the hardships of the Calydonians, all the violent deaths, and the dis­solution of Meleager — were all due, they say, to Artemis, who held a grudge because she had not been included in Oeneus' invitation to his sacrifice; so deeply was she impressed by the superiority of his victims! Methinks I can see her in Heaven then, left all by herself when the other gods and goddesses had gone to the house of Oeneus, fussing and scolding about being left out of such a feast!

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