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THE LOVER OF LIES
" When I was on my way home from Egypt I heard that this shrine in Mallus was very famous and very truthful, and that it responded clearly, answering word for word whatever one wrote in his tablet and turned over to the prophet. So I thought that it would be well to give the oracle a trial in passing and ask the god for some advice about the future—"
While Eucrates was still saying these words, since I could see how the business would turn out and that the cock-and-bull story about oracles upon which he was embarking would not be short, I left him sailing from Egypt to Mallus, not choosing to oppose everyone all alone : I was aware, too, that they were put out at my being there to criticise their lies. " I am going away," I said, " to look up Leontichus, for I want to speak to him about something. As for you, since you do not think that human experiences afford you a sufficient field, go ahead and call in the gods themselves to help you out in your romancing." With that I went out. They were glad to have a free hand, and continued, of course, to feast and to gorge themselves with lies.
There you have it, Philocles ! After hearing all that at the house of Eucrates I am going about like a man who has drunk sweet must, with a swollen belly, craving an emetic. I should be glad if I could anywhere buy at a high price a dose of forget-fulness, so that the memory of what I heard may not stay with me and work me some harm. In fact, I think 1 see apparitions and spirits and Hecates!