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cynics:avidienus

Avidienus

Horace, Satires 2.2

Ofellus judges that a mean life is differet
From a plain one: so it’s foolish for you to avoid
One fault and steer towards another. Avidienus
To whom the nickname of ‘the Dog’ rightly clings,
Eats olives five-years old and cornels from the woods,
And won’t decant his wine till it’s soured, you’d detest
The smell of his olive oil, yet even on birthdays
Or weddings, or other occasions, in a clean toga,
He drips it on the salad from a two-pint horn,
With his own hands, though he’s free with his old vinegar.
What mode should the wise man adopt, which of these two
Should he copy? One side the wolf, as they say, the other
The dog. Well he’ll be worldly enough not to offend us
By meanness, and cultured enough not to be wretched
In either way. He’ll neither be cruel to his slaves
Like old Albucius, when apportioning their duties,
Nor like Naevius thoughtless in offering his guests
Greasy water: that’s also a serious mistake.
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cynics/avidienus.txt · Last modified: 2014/01/14 23:19 (external edit)