Petronius [Gaius Petronius Arbiter]

Gareth Schmeling (ed.), A Commentary on The Satyrica of Petronius

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Chapter 44

44. 1–18 Ganymedes objects to Phileros' speech and offers his own view of the world

It is B. Baldwin's contention that Ganymedes, as with Phileros above, makes a suitable semantic entrance after the pederastic passage.

§1 Ganymedes. In mythology the cup-bearer (Plautus Men. 144 Catameitus, catamite) of Zeus, but here (comically) the defender of traditional moral values; at 92. 3 Eumolpus refers to Giton as Ganymedes. narratis quod nec ad caelum nec ad terram pertinet. It seems that Ganymedes has read his Horace and agrees with the poet who comments that at his villa only matters of importance to the guests are discussed (Serm. 2. 6. 71–3): sermo oritur, non de villis domibusve alienis, / … sed quod magis ad nos pertinet. These words of Ganymedes are quoted in Erasmus' Adagiorum Chiliades 444 Ed. Poll-van de Lisdonk). narratis: M. Smith (1975) ad loc. sees in this word hint of impatience and cites Cicero Fam. 9. 15. 3. Perhaps it is better to understand Ganymedes as animated, eager to add his two cents' worth; cf. 129. 6 narrabo tibi, adulescens, paralysin cave and Hofmann (1978) §113. nec ad caelum nec ad terram pertinet is a proverb or part of one; Lucian Alex. 54 ὀκτώ‎ μοι‎ χρησμοὺς‎ ἔπεμψεν‎, οὔτε‎ γῆς‎ φασιν‎ οὔτε‎ οὐρανοῦ‎; Paroem. Gr. 1. 444; Otto (1890) caelum 2. In Italian there still survives the expression, 'Cose che non stanno né in cielo né in terra'. cum interim, 'yet at the same time', like a cum inversum construction, in which the chief idea is subordinated; Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 623. nemo curat, quid annona mordet, 'no one cares how much the price of wheat grinds us down'. The pessimism, or realism, about life articulated by Ganymedes should be compared with the popular attitude of Echion at 45. 4 et ecce habituri sumus munus excellente in triduo die festa, and the sarcasm of Juvenal's famous panem et circenses (10. 81). B. Baldwin (1994) 19 points out 'how similar in sentiment and language (e.g. usque ad infimam plebem descendente annona) is a diatribe by Pliny (19. 52–6) on food, pg 174luxury, and class distinction …'. Complaints about the high price of bread are not uncommon: Terence And. 744 ff.; Tacitus Ann. 2. 87, 6. 13; Historia Apollonii 9. In a series of Ep. (4. 6. 1, 8. 15. 1, 9. 15. 1, 9. 16. 1, 9. 20. 2, 9. 36. 6, 9. 37. 2; and Trajan's solutions, Pan. 29–30) Pliny records difficulties in getting a decent crop from the fields, which would account for high food prices; Garnsey (1988). Prices were set by the market with little evidence of regulation of grain-dealers by the government. It is impossible to ascertain here if grain-dealers were gouging the public, if public officials were taking kickbacks, if there was a drought, or Ganymedes' complaints are the usual jeremiads of consumers. A walk in a modern supermarket will show that complaints and discussions about food prices have not changed; Theophrastus Char. 3. 3. Cf. Casson (1980) 21–33 and bibliography; Marquardt (1886) 415. mordet in the sense of vexat, OLD mordeo 7; Hofmann (1978) §138. §10 annona pro luto erat. On the use of the indicative and subjunctive in indirect questions in the S.: Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 537 ff.; Petersmann (1977) 265–6.

§2 non mehercules hodie buccam panis invenire potui. On the price of bread (always thought by the consumer to be high): CIL iv. 8561b, 8566, 10674; Duncan-Jones (1982) 380–1; Mroẓek (1978) 153–5: in ad 37 Egyptian wheat appears less expensive in Puteoli than in Pompeii; Mroẓek (1987) 103 for the price of bread at 2 asses per day for 1 person. buccam, as 'mouthful', seems to be colloquial; 43. 3; Martial 7. 20. 8, 10. 5. 5; Suetonius Aug. 76. 2; Apicius 7. 6. 4. As bucca tends to become synonymous with os and mean mouth, it also acquires the meaning of mouthful, Italian boccone. esur<it>io add. Bücheler. On weather as a general (and boring) topic of conversation, Theophrastus Char. 3. 3. L&S read the esurio of H, as 'a hungry person' and follow Scheffer in emending fuit to fui; Plautus Per. 103 nam essurio venio, non advenio saturio.

§3 aediles—male eveniat, qui cum pistoribus colludunt. It was the duty of the aediles in a colonia or in Rome to supervise the wheat supplies. On collusion between aediles and bakers: CIL iv. 429: C. Iulium Polybium aed(ilem) o(ro) v(os) f(aciatis). panem bonum fert. On Tacitus Ann. 13. 48 Puteolanorum legationes … magistratuum … avaritiam increpantes, Wistrand (1981) 115 comments: 'There might be seditio, that is open conflict between the ruling aristocracy and the common people, between rich and poor.' On problems with the grain supply and political benefit from such shortages: Tacitus H. 4. 38, Brunt (1961) 213; on aediles, contracts with bakers, and grain supply, Casson (1980); Marquardt (1886) 415 ff. The syntax of aediles is difficult. If we consider an aposiopesis after aediles, it would read 'The aediles! may they go to hell'. Or aediles is an accusative object of male eveniat by analogy with male me habet; Guericke (1875) 52; Hofmann (1928) 508; Perrochat (1952) ad loc. pistoribus. Since the dole was provided in wheat-bread, bakers were useful people to know: CIL vi. 1958; Juvenal 10. 81 pg 175panem et circenses. serva me, servabo te. Such social comments are timeless but not specific; 45. 13 manus manum lavat. Heraeus (1937) 122 notes similar rhythmic expressions inscribed on rings (but these are personal comments): ama me, amabo te; memini tui, memento mei. Note the parataxis; Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 481; Hofmann (1978) §103. On such expressions as proverbs, Otto (1890) servare, manus 3. populus minutus, 'the man in the street', French le menu peuple. Perhaps a popular expression: Phaedrus 4. 6. 13 minuta plebes; Plautus Cist. 522 di me omnes, magni minutique; Heraeus (1937) 111; W. Slater (1974). isti maiores maxillae semper Saturnalia agunt. For difficulties between corrupt or self-serving local officials and the people and collusion between government officials and wealthy merchants to the detriment of the people, see n. above on aediles. isti is masculine and maxillae feminine: the agreement is constructio ad sensum not syntactical. At §18 udi refers to omnes and omnes to stolatae, since no males are mentioned; §5 larvasistos; Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 430 ff. Here maiores maxillae refers metaphorically to the aediles who grind the people down; Suetonius Tib. 21. 2 miserum populum Romanum qui sub tam lentis maxillis erit; Hofmann (1978) §82. While Ganymedes is of the opinion that the maiores maxillae semper Saturnalia agunt, Otto (1890) Saturnalia seems to demonstrate that those who party now will pay later: Seneca Apoc. 12. 2 non semper Saturnalia erunt; Lucian De merc. cond. 16 οἴει‎ γὰρ‎ εἰσαεὶ‎ Διονύσια‎ ἑορτάσειν‎. S. 58. 2 io Saturnalia refers to an uninhibited public holiday, 17–23 December; Latte (1960) 254–5; Blümner (1911) 288; Nilsson RE s.v. Saturnalia, 201–11.

§4 si haberemus illos leones, colloquial for 'real men'; cf. §14 si nos coleos haberemus … domi leones, foras vulpes. Otto (1890) leo 3; Hofmann (1978) §82. This is a rare case where the animal metonymy has a positive meaning. The opposite is much more often the case in the Cena: 37. 6 lupatria; 37. 7 pica; §14 vulpes; 57. 2 vervex; 58. 4 mus; 74. 9 canis; 75. 6 milva. cum primum ex Asia veni (Ganymedes). The merits of the previous generation (the good old days) are a regular and boring conversation subject; Theophrastus Char. 3. 3. T. is the only other freedman to mention that he came from the East (75. 10), tam magnus ex Asia veni; Ganymedes portrays himself as a 'little T'. At 2. 7 we learn that the awful Asianic style of rhetoric also came ex Asia, the birthplace of Ganymedes and T. Asia is that area of western Turkey, the old Kingdom of Pergamum, bequeathed by its king Attalus III to Rome.

§5 illud erat vivere. Colloquial expression: ILS 8626f (on a gaming table), see 42. 1 n.; Seneca Ep. 123. 10 esse, bibere, frui patrimonio, hoc est vivere; Heraeus (1937) 122. <si> simila siligine inferior e<sse>t Schmeling (simila si siligine inferior esset iam Bücheler 1882) ('if daily flour were inferior to the finest'):<si> simila Siciliae inferior erat M. Smith (1975) follows the suggestion of J. H. Simon, which is almost identical with that of Ernout (1958): similia sicilia interiores et H, printed by Müller as †similia sicilia interioreset. pg 176siligine. See Juvenal 5. 70 (Courtney), 'the finest flour'; but simila is also defined as the 'finest wheat flour'. et larvas … istos, 'those bogeymen'. See above, §3 isti … maxillae n.: logical instead of syntactical agreement. On larva as a term of abuse, Opelt (1965) 121, 259. percolopabant, 'they punched them out thoroughly'. Denominative of per + colaphus (κόλαφος‎); cf. 34. 2 colaphisque. It is interesting to note that while the narrator employs the regular form colaphus, with the aspiration and the internal a, Ganymedes uses the hybrid verb derived from the plebeian form with no aspiration (T. at 70. 2 uses colepio) and with the weakening of a in Vulgar pronunciation: percolopare < colopus (Heraeus 1937, 140; Boyce 1995, 42), from which comes the Italian colpo; Stefenelli (1962) 45–6; Väänänen (1967) §67. ut illis Iuppiter iratus esset, 'so that they thought that God Almighty was angry with them'. See n. at 58. 2 curabo, iam tibi Iovis iratus sit; 58. 7 Athana tibi irata sit, curabo.

§6 Safinium. An Osco-Samnitic name; Maiuri (1945) 236. ad arcum veterem. P. does not identify places with specifics, but perhaps the ancient reader of the complete S. might identify the place in the Graeca urbs (81. 3). piper, non homo. See the n. at 38. 15 for similar recurrent phrasing. For the meaning of pepper, Martial 8. 59. 4 piperata manus. There is still the Italian expression è tutto di pepe; the American expression is 'he is full of pep'.

§7 terram adurebat, 'he was a ball of fire'. Not listed in Otto (1890), but surely an adage. sed … sed. On this as a colloquial anaphora similar to 63. 8 non … non … non; 63. 9 sunt … sunt; Hofmann (1978) §63. amicus amico. See n. at 43. 4 for this expression. in tenebris micare: proverbial to indicate that a person was honest; Cicero Off. 3. 77 iam contritum est vestustate, proverbium: cum enim fidem alicuius … laudant, dignum esse dicunt, quicum in tenebris mices. micare. 64. 12. A game in which one player suddenly holds up a number of fingers for another player to guess; Cicero Div. 2. 85 (Pease); Pseudo-Acron on Horace Serm. 2. 3. 248 says the game is played with nuts not fingers. Perhaps it is the modern Italian game morra, in which two players raise a number of fingers and each tries to guess the total. De Jorio (2000) 450–3 compares the gestures of the game in P. with those in early-nineteenth-century Naples; Marquardt (1886) 836; Otto (1890) micare. In Pictures from Italy (1846), 'Genoa and its Neighbours', Charles Dickens writes: 'But the most favourite game is the national one of Mora, which they pursue with surprising ardour, and at which they will stake everything they possess. It is a destructive kind of gambling, requiring no accessories but the ten fingers … On a holiday evening, standing at a window, or walking in a garden … or sauntering in a quiet place about the town, you will hear this game in progress in a score of wine-shops at once.'

§8 {vel} pilabat {tractabat} del. Scheffer, Jacobs, Bücheler, Müller; as the diagram in Bücheler (1862) shows, vel tractabat will have been a gloss written above pilabat with vel extending to the left and and tractabat to the right, 'in the city council how he used to dress 'em down!' nec schemas loquebatur pg 177sed derectum, 'he did not use fancy phrases but spoke straight'. 126. 8. One of the rhetorical schemata was the σχῆμα‎ πλάγιον‎ (oblique), opposite of direct speech; Seneca Contr. 2. 4. 10 non schemate, sed derecto. The feminine schema occurs elsewhere (see OLD s.v.), but E. uses the classical neuter schema (126. 8). Another feminine for neuter in the S.: 45. 9, 69. 1 stigmam, which likewise involves a change of declension of the Greek word from third to first; Palmer (1954) 159 ff.; Boyce (1995) 48.

§9 nec expuit. As an orator Safinius does not spit; Quintilian (11. 3. 56) berates spitting as a defect among orators: tussire et exspuere … pituitam trochleis adducere et oris humore proximos spargere. Whether Ganymedes appreciates this point of rhetorical etiquette or not is unclear, but he seems to have been within range and not spat upon. puto eum nescioquid assi {a dis} habuisse Schmeling, 'I think that he possessed some kind of dryness' (with all his fine attributes, none of which he received from the gods, Sufinus is, according to Burman, favoured by the gods with dryness; we would expect the gods to be credited with more important blessings; the form dis occurs nowhere else in the S.: diibus 1 ×, diis 4 ×): assi a dis Burman, Müller: asia dis H, Bücheler here, followed by Friedländer (1906) ad loc., prints asiadis (quid asiadis, 'something of Asia'), a hapax, which alludes to Asiatics not spitting (see above). Since Ganymedes was Asiatic, he is credited (if Bücheler is right) with knowing about spitting and that not spitting was a plus mark for Safinius; Nonius 395. 1–3, ii. 634 Lindsay Persae propter exercitationes puerilis modicas eo consecuti corporis siccitatem, ut neque spuerent neque emungerentur.

§10 et quam benignus resalutare, nomina omnia reddere, tamquam unus de nobis. Ganymedes' reminiscence marks the contrast between 'them' and 'us'; such a small kindness from a local magistrate named Safinius is enough to endear him to Ganymedes. The implication is that the aristocracy did not always greet freedmen or call them by name: Martial 10. 70. 5; Juvenal 3. 184–5 (Courtney); Historia Apollonii 8 ( 215): Hellenicus ait: 'ave, rex Apolloni!' at ille salutatus fecit quod potentes facere consueverunt: sprevit hominem plebeium. tunc senex indignatus iterato salutavit eum et ait: 'ave, inquam, Apolloni, resaluta et noli despicere paupertatem.' unus de nobis. On the changing nature of unus, see Petersmann (1977) 145. In the S. we note de + noun at 26. 9, 46. 7, 66. 3, though in the S. unus is almost always followed by ex (30. 5, etc.); Petersmann (1977) 72–3 examines the uses of de and ex in his study of the gentitive in P. pro luto, 'dirt cheap'. Repeated at 51. 6, 67. 10; on its use as a proverb, Otto (1890) lutum 5.

§11 asse panem quem emisses, non potuisses cum altero devorare. For HS ¼ = 1 as one could buy a loaf of bread to satisfy more than two people. P.'s original readers, a coterie around Nero, might be reminded of the food shortage of ad 64; Tacitus Ann. 15. 39. Duncan-Jones (1982) 244–5 notes that evidence from the mid-first century ad supports a common price of 2 asses pg 178per loaf, making a 1 as price very low; Diehl (1930) no. 390; CIL iv. 5380. nunc oculum bublum. Ganymedes uses the syncopated form of bubul- here; at 35. 3 E. uses bubulae; cf. peduclum 57. 7; ridicli 57. 8; offla 56. 8, 56. 9, 58. 2; Boyce (1991) 42 on syncope. Smith (1995) ad loc. feels that the 'context demands that "bull's eye" should denote some small object other than bread: "Nowadays I've seen bigger buns [say] than the loaves they sell"'. Friedländer (1906) ad loc. suggest that bublum might be the name of the small buns or rolls uncovered in excavations at Pompeii.

§12 heu, heu, quotidie peius. See 42. 4 n.; 64. 3. On the ellipsis of the verb in P., see Petersmann (1977) 41–5. colonia retroversus crescit tamquam coda vituli. The colonia—for such is the Graeca urbs (81. 3): §16; 57. 9, 76. 10—grows 'downwards', 'in reversed order'. For the expression: Blümner (1920) 339; Otto (1890) cauda cites this example only of the proverb. coda: the vulgar form for the Classical cauda of Eumolpus at 89 v. 38; see 40. 7 lotam n.; the vulgar form (coliculi) appears even in a verse of E. at 132. 8 v. 2.

§13 quare {non} habemus aedilem <non> trium cauniarum transp. Bücheler (in the apparatus) Müller, 'not worth three Caunian figs'. Otto (1890) triobulus, lists a similar expression: Plautus Poen. 463 non homo trioboli. cauniae: the popular pronunciation of cauneae (sc. ficus), dried figs from Caunus in Caria (Cicero Div. 2. 84; Pliny NH 15. 83). For e > i in the S. see Boyce (1991), 40–1. Hofmann (1978) §78 notes the vernacular and colloquial use of numerals in negative judgements: 58. 4, 5, 14, 74. 15. itaque domi gaudet. Cf. the proverbial expression in sinu gaudere: Cicero Tusc. 3. 51; [Tibullus] 4. 13. 8; Otto (1890) sinus 2. quam alter patrimonium habet. Almost a repetition from 37. 8. In popular speech alter is beginning to replace alius; Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 208; it becomes the Italian altro.

§14 iam scio unde acceperit denarios mille aureos, literally 'I now know …'; but if we have a iam which sums up the aedile's malfeasances and Ganymedes' conspiratorial awareness of them, we might translate iam and following, 'For you see, I know where he got the HS 100,000 from', viz. the amount necessary to qualify for the aedileship. Ganymedes obliquely accuses him of corruption in office. Pliny Ep. 1. 19. 2 (Sherwin-White) cites for Comum HS 100,000 as the property qualification for the decurionate; Duncan-Jones (1982) 243. Bodel (2003a) 276 adds that Ganymedes implies that the aedile values hard cash above the lives of the citizens. sed si nos coleos haberemus. 39. 7 in geminis autem nascuntur bigae et boves et colei. colei appears twice in the S., both times in the speeches of freedmen. Adams (1982) 66 wonders if such expressions are obscene: Cicero Fam. 9. 22. 4; Martial 9. 27. 1; Priapea 14. 8, 25. 7, 29. 4. For the sentiment expressed in sexual terms: Persius 1. 103–4; Quintilian 1. 10. 31 (music). Martial 12. 83. 2 uses colei in synecdoche, and it is used humorously at CIL iv. 4488 seni supino colei culum tegunt. At 35. 3, 39. 7 gemini is a play on words for testiculi. nunc populus est domi leones, foras vulpes. 30. 3, 47. 5; Stefenelli (1962) 86–7. The pg 179sentiment has a long history: Aristophanes Pax 1189–90 ὄντες‎ οἴκοι‎ μὲν‎ λέοντες‎ / ὲν‎ μάχῃ‎ δ‎ʼ ἀλώπεκες‎; Sidonius Ep. 5. 7. 5 cum sint in praetoriis leones, in castris lepores; Tertullian de Cor. 1. 5 in pace leones et in proelio cervos; Otto (1890) leo 3. foras; for foris; CIL iv. 3494

§15 (pannos …) casulas. Plural for singular as at 46. 2, 57. 6 glebulas emi; Juvenal 9. 61; Petersmann (1977) 57–8. The diminutive force is preserved; Hofmann (1978) §129 discusses its colloquial use. Ganymedes' abode is not merely a casa instead of a domus, just as his clothes are not vestes but panni. Adams (2003b) 21 notes that this rare word casula also appears in the colloquial Tab. Vind. 3. 643.

§16 ita meos fruniscar. For the form of the wish: 25. 4 habeam; Seneca Apoc. 1. 3 ita illum salvum et felicem habeam. fruniscar. 43. 6; also with the accusative at 75. 3; Gellius 17. 2. 5–8 on its use with accusative and ablative; Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 123. ut ego puto omnia illa <ab> aedilibus fieri H: a diibus Bücheler Müller. The ab is omitted between -a and ae-. Heraeus (1937) 139–40 notes that the form a diibus is not found in the glosses, but M. Smith (1975) ad loc. comments that it occurs often in inscriptions. The omnia illa refers to the annona and things going wrong in the community for which the current generation is responsible. He has been complaining that haec colonia retroversus crescit tamquam coda vituli (§12) because the (aedilis) sibi mavult assem quam vitam nostram (§13). The cause of his troubles is the aedilis or several aediles, who control the food supply and thus his life: omnia illa <ab> aedilibus fieri.

§17 nemo enim caelum caelum putat, nemo ieiunium servat, nemo Iovem pili facit, sed omnes opertis oculis bona sua computant. The use of anaphora and a tricolon is almost elegant. The juncture caelum caelum seems to be unique to P., and the use of caelum for the gods rather than for their abode could be an Orientalsim. The Ieiunium Cereris (4 October) dates to 191 bc in Rome (Livy 36. 37. 4; Friedländer (1906) ad loc.); but Ganymedes, freedman ex Asia, is not likely to be reckoning back to a fast ordered in the Sibylline Books. Iovem. The proper deity to invoke for rain; Tibullus 1. 7. 26; Tertullian Apol. 40. 14–15 rants that the Romans still invoke Jupiter for rain; Appel (1909) 87. Horace Serm. 2. 3. 291–2 (Iuppiter) mane die quo tu indicis ieiunia nudus / in Tiberi stabit, knows of a day of fasting. CIL iv. 6779 mentions the days of the week and among them (dies) Iovis. opertis oculis. 62. 12, 141. 7. Perhaps it is similar to capite velato; Cicero ND 2. 10 capite velato, for a discussion of it in religion; Seneca Tranq. 1. 16 opertis oculis for its secular use. Ganymedes complains that these people only pretend to pray, eyes covered, but in truth calculate their bank balances—a curious conclusion to a statement from one of the freedmen at T.'s Cena, who spend the majority of their time thinking about money.

§18 antea stolatae ibant nudis pedibus in clivum, passis capillis … Iovem aquam exorabant. 'In the good old days' = antea. The only occurrence in P. pg 180of the correct classical adverbial form; elsewhere (17×) P. uses ante, which prevails in popular speech; Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 223; Petersmann (1977) 24 n. 9. On the stola as a long dress for Roman matrons: Marquardt (1886) 575; W. Lowe (1905). stolatae. There is a strong element of (outer) respectability to the title femina stolata, which later becomes a title for a woman granted the ius trium liberorum (whether of not she had three children); Heraeus (1937) 65. nudis pedibus. Virgil, A. 4. 518 provides Pease an opportunity for a lengthy list of references to bare feet; on the nudipedalia, Tertullian Apol. 40. 14; de Ieiunio 16.5; Stemplinger (1950) 157; worshippers nudis pedibus would be in immediate contact (magic) with the earth which needed the rain; on bare feet in rituals, Heckenbach (1911) 21–31. The clivus is at the Capitolium; Bodel (1984) 219. passis capillis. 111. 2 (see n.). Mention is made in cult practice of women with untied hair: Virgil A. 1. 480; Livy 1. 13. 1; Ovid F. 3. 257–8. The magical significance seems to be the same as for bare feet: Horace Serm. 1. 8. 24 pedibus nudis passoque capillo. Iovem aquam exorabat. On double accusatives after exoro, Szantyr–Hofmann (1965) 43. For rain one calls upon Jupiter; Tibullus 1. 7. 26 pluvio … Iovi; Horace Ep. 2. 1. 135 caelestis implorat aquas, in a passage in which poetry is described as still endowed with the magical and religious power of the carmen of the past. urceatim, 'by the bucket'. For adverbs in -tim, Leumann–Hofmann–Szantyr (1963) §215. A hapax. The fine hand of P. turns the story towards humour. plovebat. The classical form is pluebat, but the Vulgar form avoids hiatus and anticipates the Italian piove; Stefenelli (1962) 88; Väänänen (1937) 46 and Boyce (1991) 39 adduce CIL iv. 3730 (where the inscription reads poveri for pueri) and support the reading of H. aut tunc aut numquam. For colloquial or proverbial expression without a verb; Petersmann (1977) 41–5; in a literary text the verb would be retained as in Cicero Amic. 9 aut enim nemo … aut, si quisquam, ille sapiens fuit. redibant (Jacobs, Wehle 1861, 20 Müller: ridebant H) udi tamquam mures, 'they returned like drowned mice'. It is difficult to follow H, which would yield 'they all smiled like drenched/drowned mice', since mice cannot smile. M. Smith (1975) ad loc. incorrectly lists rats as well as mice under mus. There seems to be no evidence for rats in the classical world; Zinsser (1940) 194: 'It is quite impossible to make a case for the presence of true rats in Europe proper during the Classical time …'. di pedes lanatos habent. From Porphyrio on Horace C. 3. 2. 31–2 it can be surmised that the expression could refer to the slowness of even angry gods to punish the guilty: deos iratos pedes lanatos habere quia nonnumquam tarde veniunt nocentibus. Macrobius Sat. 1. 8. 5 quotes an assertion that Saturn's statue is bound with a bond of wool but set free for the Saturnalia, and that in this custom lies the origin of the proverb deos laneos pedes habere. The woollen bond seems to be regarded as an impediment to punishing the guilty and helping the innocent. Otto (1890) deus 10. quia nos religiosi non sumus, agri iacent. A stock complaint pg 181of the laudatores temporis acti (Horace Ep. 2. 1. 80 periisse pudorem) in Italy to this day ('non c'è più religione').

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