aleator classicus

Reading at Random in Classical Literature

Lucian, Saturnalia 13

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The first set of rules for the Saturnalia, as dictated by Cronos himself.

μηδένα μηδὲν μήτε ἀγοραῖον μήτε ἴδιον πράττειν ἐντὸς τῆς ἑορτῆς ἢ ὅσα ἐς παιδιὰν καὶ τρυφὴν καὶ θυμηδίαν· ὀψοποιοὶ μόνοι καὶ πεμματουργοὶ ἐνεργοὶ ἔστωσαν. ἰσοτιμία πᾶσιν ἔστω καὶ δούλοις καὶ ἐλευθέροις καὶ πένησι καὶ πλουσίοις. ὀργίζεσθαι ἢ ἀγανακτεῖν ἢ ἀπειλεῖν μηδενὶ ἐξέστω. λογισμοὺς παρὰ τῶν ἐπιμελουμένων Κρονίοις λαμβάνειν μηδὲ τοῦτο ἐξέστω. μηδεὶς τὸν ἄργυρον ἢ τὴν ἐσθῆτα ἐξεταζέτω μηδὲ ἀναγραφέτω ἐν τῇ ἑορτῇ μηδὲ γυμναζέσθω Κρονίοις μηδὲ λόγους ἀσκεῖν ἢ ἐπιδείκνυσθαι, πλὴν εἴ τινες ἀστεῖοι καὶ φαιδροὶ σκῶμμα καὶ παιδιὰν ἐμφαίνοντες.

No one is to do anything, either public or private business, during the festival, except for things to do with play, luxuriousness and rejoicing; only cooks and pastry-chefs may be at work. Let there be equal treatment for all – slaves and free people, paupers and rich people. Let no one be permitted to get angry, to be vexed, or to utter threats. Let it also not be permitted for anyone to audit accounts during the time devoted to Cronus. Let no one inspect or make an inventory of their silver or clothing during the festival, nor take part in athletics during Cronus’ time, nor practise their public speaking, nor put on a show, except for witty and cheery people who present jokes and playfulness.

Written by aleatorclassicus

December 23, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Posted in Lucian

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