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the myth was localized in Sicily; the Sicilian myth Theocritus knew, but he adapted it to his literary purposes. The befuddling with wine and the blindness he rejected as objectionable; for the wine-incident he substituted the wrath of Aphrodite at the compact made between the nymph and Daphnis; the love-goddess, according to my conception of Theocritus's version, inspired Daphnis with passion for another maiden. There are traces, also, in the eighth and twentyseventh idylls, if these be genuine, and also in the sixth, that Theocritus did not hesitate to let his fancy invent other incidents appropriate to the Daphnis-myth. Theocritus, I assume, was a Sicilian. Several writers, not Sicilian, and with less first-hand knowledge of the myth,1 adapted it to their own purposes; Sositheus, and possibly others, joined in one story Daphnis and Lityerses; Alexander Aetolus joined Daphnis and Marsyas; Hermesianax of Colophon joined Daphnis and Menalcas. These writers represent the tendency to combine prominent heroes in one myth; their Daphnis is not the Daphnis of the original myth, but a rather conventionalized figure. Even in Theocritus, the heroic Daphnis is getting obscured. This obscuration and conventionalization of the original Daphnis, beginning possibly in the Alexandrine period, continued during the succeeding periods of Greek literature, although we cannot trace its development; in Vergil and Longus, at any rate, the heroic Daphnis has succumbed.


1 It should be noted, however, that, with the exception of Sositheus, these writers are members of the so-called Coan School, and possibly the Daphnismyth was the common property of this literary fraternity; and possibly Theocritus inspired the other poets to make use of it.

2 That is, if Ps.-Servius's "Pimplea" belongs to this plot.

8 I regret that the article by R. Helm, Daphnis bei Theokrit, Philologus, LVIII (N.F. XII), p. III, has reached me too late for consideration.



HE greater part of what is written on the Greek and Roman religions has to do with divinities and rites, the externals of the ancient cults. Little is said of the 'true inwardness' of these forms of religion or of the attitude of mind of the worshipper towards them. I propose to say something on these more internal aspects of the Greek religion. The most natural source of information on this subject would seem to be the 'Comedy of Life and Manners,' such as was the New Comedy of the Greeks. But unfortunately very little of that literature remains, and that only in fragments accidentally preserved. Our chief knowledge of it comes from the Latin imitations in Plautus, Terence, and a few fragments of other comedians. The freedom with which these writers treated their originals has thrown suspicion upon them as authorities for either Greek or Roman life, so that they are considered practically useless for any scientific evidence. This suspicion is in the main justified. A definite custom alluded to in the Latin plays cannot be assumed as Greek, because it may be the author's own addition, nor as Roman, because he may have borrowed it from the original. Thus this most valuable source is wholly vitiated and has ordinarily been abandoned. I think, however, that this sceptical tendency has often been carried too far. Though it is almost impossible to draw a line separating the original matter from the adapter's work, yet there are some things of which we may be reasonably certain. No one, I think, will suppose that the Roman adapters did invent or could have invented their plots or even the incidents of the plays or the characters. Whatever, then, is closely bound up with either of these so as to be an integral part of them may justly be regarded as Greek. The same is true, though perhaps in a less degree, of the general tone of the plays, the ideals and views of life, the philosophical con

ceptions so far as these are retained, the attitude of the characters to each other and to their surroundings, in fact, everything that is general rather than detailed. Inasmuch as the questions with which I shall deal are of this kind and have to do with mental attitudes and general ideas, there is very little which bears on the subject at all that need be rejected as doubtful on account of the recognized faultiness of the source, even if we should reject all the details as untrustworthy. With these principles in mind I have gathered from the Latin comedy all the citations bearing on the conceptions of the Greeks as to their religion and on the effect upon them of their religious beliefs. To these I have added many citations from the fragments of the New Comedy preserved in the original Greek form. These I will give with brief notes where it seems desirable, and in order to make my processes and conclusions more immediately intelligible, I shall translate the passages for the most part.


A. The first subject on which the evidence bears is that of the sanctity of an oath and the supposed activity of the gods in enforcing this obligation. The indications here are very plain indeed. In Aulularia1 772 ff., Lyconides swears solemnly by Jupiter that he has not stolen a pot of gold. Euclio, though at the time in a violent frenzy, is satisfied and accepts this as proof. This is so closely connected with the action of the play that it is hardly possible to suppose it an interpolation of Plautus.

EVCL. Dic bona fide; tu id aurum non surripuisti? Lvc. Bona.
EVCL. Neque (eum) scis qui abstulerit? LYC. Istuc quoque bona.
EVCL. Atque id si scies

qui abstulerit, mihi indicabis? Lyc. Faciam. EVCL. Neque partem tibi ab eo qui habet indipisces neque furem excipies? Lyc. Ita. EVCL. Quid (si) fallis? Lyc. Tum me faciat quod volt magnus Iuppiter. EVCL. Sat habeo. Age nunc loquere quid vis.

'What if you speak falsely. Then may great Jove do with me as he will. I am content.

Come, now, say whatever you wish.'

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In Bacchides 1025 ff. a young man is trying to get money from his father by a 'blackmail' game.

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NIC. Nunc si me fas est obsecrare abs te, pater,
da mihi ducentos nummos Philippos, te obsecro.'

CHRYS. Ne unum quidem hercle, si sapis. NIC. Sine perlegam.


Ego ius iurandum verbis conceptis dedi, daturum id me hodie mulieri ante vesperum,

prius quam a me abiret. Nunc, pater, ne perierem
cura atque abduce me hinc ab hac quantum potest,
quam propter tantum damni feci et flagiti.'

'Now if it is proper for me to beg from you, father, give me two hundred nummi, I entreat you. Not a single one, by Jove, if you are wise. Let me read on. I have sworn a formal oath that I would give it to the woman to-day before evening, before she left me. Now, father, take good care that I do not perjure myself, etc.'

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Here, also, there is close connection with the action, and the son evidently regards this oath as the most potent means to get the money.

In Hecyra1 750 ff. Bacchis the meretrix says:

Si aliud scirem qui firmare meam apud vos possem fidem
sanctius quam ius iurandum id pollicerer tibi, Laches,
segregatum habuisse uxorem ut duxit a me Pamphilum.

'If I knew anything else more sacred than an oath to strengthen your belief in me, I would offer it, etc.'

Here, of course, the asseveration might be made in some other form without changing the action, but still it is essential to the plot. Later (771) Laches says:

Bacchis deierat persancte.

The reply of Phidippus is instructive :

Nec pol istae metuont deos neque has respicere deos opinor.

'That kind of women have no fear of the gods, nor I fancy do the gods care much for them.' (So their oath is nought).

The greater part of the Prologue of the Rudens turns on perjury. This prologue may not be a direct adaptation from the Greek, but

1 Terence is cited from Dziatzko.

the whole movement of it is sufficient assurance that in all essentials it is original and not made up by Plautus or any Latin workman. Inasmuch as a storm at sea is the means of working out the plot in the punishment of a perjurer and the rescue of a pious maiden, Arcturus is introduced as Prologus to explain matters, claiming to be the agent of Jove in punishing perjury. It is to be noticed that though he speaks of crime somewhat generally yet all the details relate to perjury proper, as in v. 13 falsas lites, etc., v. 14 abiurant pecuniam, v. 17 periurio, v. 18 res falsas, v. 19 iudicat, v. 25 periuris.

Qui gentes omnes mariaque et terras movet,
eius sum civis civitate caelitum.

Ita sum ut videtis splendens stella candida,
signum quod semper tempore exoritur suo
hic atque in caelo. Nomen Arcturost mihi.
[Noctu sum in caelo clarus atque inter deos,
inter mortalis ambulo interdius.]

Et alia signa de caelo ad terram accidunt.
quist imperator divom atque hominum Iuppiter,
is nos per gentis hic alium alia disparat,
qui facta, hominum mores, pietatem et fidem
noscamus, ut quemque adiuvet opulentia.
Qui falsas litis falsis testimoniis
petunt quique in iure abiurant pecuniam,
eorum referimus nomina exscripta ad Iovem.
Cotidie ille scit quis hic quaerat malum.
Qui hic litem apisci postulant periurio
mali, res falsas qui impetrant aput iudicem,
iterum ille eam rem iudicatam iudicat:

maiore multa multat quam litem auferunt.
Bonos in aliis tabulis exscriptos habet.

Atque hoc scelesti illi in animum inducunt suom,
Iovem se placare posse donis, hostiis.

Et operam et sumptum perdunt. Id eo fit, quia :
nihil ei acceptumst a periuris supplici.
Facilius siqui pius est a dis supplicans
Quam qui scelestust inveniet veniam sibi.
Idcirco moneo vos ego haec, qui estis boni
Quique aetatem agitis cum pietate et cum fide :
retinete porro, post factum ut laetemini.

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