Unformatted text preview: 1 A C H A R N I A NS
Translated by G. Theodoridis
revisions by W.E. Major and others
with additional lyrics by David Johnston
DICAEOPOLIS: A farmer
HERALDS to the Assembly
DOUBLEGOD: An aristocrat
TWO AMBASSADORS to the PERSIAN COURT
THEORUS: Ambassador to Thrace
CHORUS of Charcoal Burners from Acharnae
BLONDIE: A slave to Dicaeopolis
A DAUGHTER to DICAEOPOLIS
EURIPIDES: The Athenian tragedian
A SERVANT to Euripides
LAMACHUS: A duly elected general
MEGARIAN: A poor man
TWO DAUGHTERS to the MEGARIAN
THEBAN: A merchant
ISMENIAS: His slave
NICARCHUS: Another informer.
DERKETES: A farmer
HERALDS P r o log u e (1-203) The st a ge is d ivided into two pa r ts. O n St a ge L e f t is D
St a ge Right is a bu i lding wh i ch wi l l se rve a s f i rst , the Pnyx, then E u r ip ides
a l t a r to D ionysus. The Pnyx ha s benches a round fo r the peop l e to si t upon
a nd t ab l es fo r the E xe cut ive C ommi t t e e .
D a y. The O pen A i r Assemb ly. D i c a eopo l is is st a nd ing, a l l a lone , wa i t ing.
N ext to h im is a sa c k of g a r l i c wh i ch he h a s b rought f rom h is f a rm. H e
p a c ing up and down, sh a k ing h is he a d, despondency slowly g iving wa y to
a nge r a nd, be twe en comed i c pa uses, he f a r ts, sc r a t ches h is a ss a nd c rot ch,
s t a r e s t e a r f u l l y i n t o t h e d i s t a n c e , s c r a t c h e s t h e g r ound w i t h h i s f e e t , s i t s
down, st a nds up, f r e ts.
DICAEOPOLIS: (S ighs seve r a l t imes be fo r e he spe a ks a nd when he does
so, h is spe e ch is ponde rous, agon iz ed and peppe r ed wi th mor e sighs.) God,
there are so many things that eat away at my poor little ticker! Oh, yes! So
many worries! And the pleasures? (Sh a k es h is he a d despondent ly) So few
pleasures! ( Th inks wh i l e count ing on h is f inge rs.) Four, to be utterly
precise! Four! Whereas my pains!
(Mor e sighs) Let me see, now. Which
of these pleasures were really worthy of the name? Oh, yes! (L a ughs) I
remember now! This was a real delectation, this one! It gave my soul
something to be really chirpy about. That was when our leader, Cleon, had
to vomit back the five talents (shows the f inge rs on h is h a nd a g a in) count
them five talents, to the Treasury! Five talents
(B a c k to count ing
h i s f i ng e r s a g a i n . )
What a beautiful job the Horsemen did on
him! I love them for that! Men and deed, worthy of Greece! ( Th inks fo r a
l i t t l e wh i l e a nd a thought sa ddens h im.) But then, there was this tragic
torture I had to endure. While I was at the theater, expecting some brilliant
My God! Can you imagine how that froze my heart? (B a c k to th ink ing. Th is
But then again, what a joy it was to have that
crap lyre-player, Moschus, followed by divine Dexitheus! Oh, what a 2
delightful voice that boy has! He came on to sing some lovely Boeotian
songs. Absolute delight! (B a c k to th ink ing. S igh of sa dness a g a in.)
Completely the opposite of what happened this year! Disgusting! Damn
near killed myself trying to look away when that gruesome sight of a flute
player, sneaked onto the stage to play his martial airs. Tararam, ta raram,
tarararararram! Horrible (Looks a round h im, ange r swe l l ing.) But, my God! My eyes have never
burned so much as they do now at the sight of this. Not since mo mmy gave
me my first bath, did they burn so much! (Wa ving h is a rms a bout ,
ind i c a t ing the empt iness of the p l a c e) Look at t
but this is a proper, normal day for the sitting of the Assembly. Yet, look at
usual or running up and down the place trying to avoid the staining rope of
the cops when they try to round them up. Even the Executives
- as always!- all in one go, preferring to push and
shove each other to get to the front row, rather than to talk about peace. Oh,
Athens, Athens! My poor little country! What are you doing? What are you
on about these days? HERALD: ( D i r e c t ing eve ryone) This way! This way please! Come in
through, into the consecrated area, please! This way! E nt e r D oub l egod, l a st of a l l and look ing conc e rned.
DOUBLEGOD: ( To D i c a eopol is) Has anyone spoken yet? D i c a eopo l is sh a k es h is he a d.
HERALD: Right! Is there anyone who wishes to speak?
DOUBLEGOD: I do!
HERALD: Who are you?
DOUBLEGOD: I am Doublegod!
HERALD: Here I am, as always the first one here and, as always, I sit and wait. And
wait, and wait! And, what can I do with myself? All alone, here? ( G roa ns) I
groan, and groan and I yawn and (St r e t ches h is l imbs) and I stretch and I
( F a r ts loud ly, then chuc k l es) and I fart and fart pooh, stinky
(Sc r a t che s h is g ro in) so I
Peace! How I long for peace! ( D e ep sigh.) re not a mortal? DOUBLEGOD: No, not a mortal. I am immortal! Because Doublegod Sr.
married Demeter and they gave birth to Triptolemos. By him was born
Keleos who wedded grandma
aenarete- from whom emerged
Doublegod! And as
such, the gods have entrusted me me alone- with the peace negotiations
with Sparta! But, men, though I am immortal, I still need financial support
but (p l e a ds) The Executive will just not give me that support!
HERALD: Archers! Out with this idiot! there. We supply everything ourselves
Here I am then, absolutely determined to scream and shout and swear at the
speakers if any of them want to talk about anything else but pe ace. E nt e r the E xe cut ive C ommi t t e e , a H e r a ld, two a r che rs a nd a c rowd, jost l ing
f o r t h e f r on t s e a t s .
and shoving each other to get to the front planks. Pushing, pushing,
pushing! Everyone is pushing! The a r che rs come a nd g r a b D oub l egod.
DOUBLEGOD: Oh Triptolemos and Keleos, have you forsaken me? D oub l egod is th rown out of the Pnyx by the a r che rs.
DICAEOPOLIS: Unfair! Unfair! The Committee is being unfair to the
Assembly by throwing out a man who wants to negotiate peace and to rid us 3
of our war shields! DICAEOPOLIS: Oh, Athens, great city of Kranaos! Can you feel how these
ambassadors are mocking you? HERALD: You, sit down and shut up!
DICAEOPOLIS: I will not sit down and shut up until you start discussing
those who drink and eat a great deal. HERALD: DICAEOPOLIS: (to the a ud i enc e) Whereas we, here in Athens, consider
real men those who fuck or get fucked a great deal! DICAEOPOLIS:
feathery, crappy ambassadors! 80
AMBASSADOR: At the end of the fourth year, we arrived at the Great HERALD: Quiet! for a swamp. And there they all sat and shat, for eight mont hs! Made huge
mountains of gold! Mountains and mountains of it! F rom St a ge r ight ent e r slowly a nd, pompously f e ign ing d ign i ty, the P e rsi a n
a mb a ssa do rs d r essed in ove rdone P e rsi a n g a rb. The i r ph a l luses p rot rude
t h r ough t h e i r m a ny f e a t h e r s .
DICAEOPOLIS: (to the a ud i enc e) Oh, Ekbatana, baby! Look at those
AMBASSADOR: (Add r essing the E xe cut ive C ommi t t e e . Ang r i ly.)
Gentlemen! You have sent us to the Great King on a salary of two drachmas
per day. That was over ten years ago, during the archonship of Euthymenes! DICAEOPOLIS: Affluent effluence! Hahaha! Eight months, hey? (Ye l l s so
th a t the a mba ssa do r ma y he a r h im) I wonder how long it took him to gather
this asshole of his back together again?
AMBASSADOR: (Respond ing to D i c a eopo l is) A full moon! Then he came
back home and made us eat oxen, roasted whole in the bread oven!
DICAEOPOLIS: Bulllllll- shit! Who ever saw oxen roasted in bread ovens?
AMBASSADOR: (St i l l w i th D i c a eopo l is) Swear to Zeus and hope to die! DICAEOPOLIS: (to the a ud i enc e) Ah, the poor little drachmas! hole (t rying to r emembe r) Lyre, no, Ripper!
AMBASSADOR: And we have suffered terribly. We were thoroughly
bored as we strolled under the sun umbrellas along the plains of Ca ystros,
DICAEOPOLIS: (to the a ud i enc e) While I was taking it easy, sleeping on
crap beds at the battlements! 90
shitful lies like this ripped us off of our two drachs per day! Per every day!
AMBASSADOR: And now, we have come here bringing with us,
Alottababba AMBASSADOR: And wherever we dined, the hosts would always force us
to drink out of golden goblets and crystal cups! All that sweet, unmixed
wine! DICAEOPOLIS: I wish the crows would rip your eye out, mister
Ambassador! 75 HERALD: (Ye l l s) 4 A lot t a b a bb a ) wi th h is two eunuchs. The i r a t t i r e is
of A lot t ab abb a is even mo r e pompous and condesc end ing. H e is we a r ing a
f r ight en ing ma sk upon wh i ch is p a int ed a huge eye , much l i k e those one
se es a t the sides of the f ront of o ld P e rsi a n sh ips.
DICAEOPOLIS: Great Hercules! Oh my, oh my, oh my, oh my God! Man
what an eye! What do you use it for, as a look out? Are you the one on the
eye on the
searching for a shit house, I mean, ship house? And what a
piece of beaten hide surrounds it! 109
DICAEOPOLIS: Masses my ass pervert as he is! Ah,
(To A l ot t ab a bb a ) be painting your ass Sardinian red. Now! Is that great king of yours going to
send us any gold? (A lot t a b a bba sh a k es h is he a d)
here are lying to us? (Th is t im e he nods. D i c a e opo l is is h igh ly su rp r ised.) AMBASSADOR: Right! Alottababba, now please tell the Athenians what
the Great King has sent you to say. (Looks c lose ly a t h im a nd a t the eunuchs) These faggots are all from around
Cleisthenes, the son of Hulk
(Looks c lose r) Cleisthenes
(Looks even c lose r a t h im unt i l . . . ) It is you! You, with
your hot, passionate and smooth-shaved ass! Did you really think you
could fool us, pretending to be a eunuch with this monkey beard? And this
ALOTTABABBA: ( M a k es rude gestur es, swing ing a nd po int ing f i rst a t h is
a ss, then a t h is pha l lus) Yee-aa mahny axy rool pissuna kinga! 123
HERALD: You! Shut up and sit down! Ahem! The Assembly invites The
Civic Banquet Hall! AMBASSADOR: (To the peop l e) Did you all get what he said? Amb a ssa do rs, A lot t ab a bb a a nd h is eunuchs l e a ve the Pnyx. Wh i l e
D i c a eopo l is spe a ks, the E xe cut ive C ommi t t e e p r ep a r es the next i t em in the
a g e nd a . DICAEOPOLIS: Not me, no! ALOTTABABBA: Grik widey-assy hole not get him muchy goldy. DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e)
homicidal? Here I am, straining to survive from one day to the next , while
the doors to the benquet halls are never shut for these crooks! ( Th inks fo r a
Doublegod? DICAEOPOLIS: Now, that was clear enough all right! Damned idiot! D oub l egod pok es h is he a d f rom beh ind a wa l l . AMBASSADOR: Yeah? What did he say? DOUBLEGOD: Here I am! Right here! AMBASSADOR: He said that the Great King will be sending you all a
great deal of gold (L e a ns to A l ot t a b a bb a and wh ispe rs in h is e a r) Say the DICAEOPOLIS:
masses of gold! 130
DICAEOPOLIS: Here, Doublegod. (Se a r ches in eve ry poc k e t a nd fo ld of
h is c lo a k a nd tun i c a nd g a the rs up some co ins. C ou nts them a nd ha nds
them to D oub l e god) Take these eight drachmas of mine and go and make
peace with the Spartans for me, my children and my nearest and dearest!
(To the E xe cut ive C ommi t t e e ) And you, gentlemen, you can go on with your 5
ambassadorizing and with your looking like idiotic dorks! D oub l egod runs of f . DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e) Now this will be good!
the real color of their money! HERALD: Let Theorus, ambassador from the court of Sitalces, King of
Thrace, approach! HERALD: Ahem! The Thracians whom Theorus has brought
approach! please t ed T h r a c i a n c l othes.
DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e) Here we go again! Another costume,
THEORUS: We would not DICAEOPOLIS: (L a ughs he a r t i ly a s he moc ks them) What is this ugly lot
( H e a pp ro a ches them fo r c lose r sc rut iny) talking
about Dickys... DICAEOPOLIS:
THEORUS: You are looking at the Odomantian Army, sir!
DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e) the time when Theognis, old with his tragedies, that boy! Brrrr!
THEORUS: I was drinking with King Sitalces during all that time. He loves
the Athenians so much! He adores them, you know! He lusts after them! So
eager to come to Athens and eat some of our sausages during our
festivals, so he begged his father to come to the aid of his newly adopted
country. To which his father agreed and took an oath and swore that he
would help the Athenians by sending them so huge an army that, when they
DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e)
except the part about the locusts!
THEORUS: (I nd i c a t ing beh ind the cu r t a in) So he has sent you these here
soldiers. They are from one of the most genuine war -loving tribes in
Thrace. DICAEOPOLIS: Odomantian what? (Po int ing a t the i r pha l luses) And who
snipped off the figskins from their Odomantian pricks?
THEORUS: (L i k e a n insu l t ed sa l esma n) These here soldiers if you give
otia conquered! f u r t i v e l y e a t i ng i t .
DICAEOPOLIS: Two drachs for these halfcocks? Oh, God! What tears
would flow from the eyes of those true soldiers, those rowers who fought
the really great battles, our city saviors, if they heard of this outrage! Two
drachs a day
(Se e s the so ld i e rs t e a r i ng hung r i ly a t
h is g a r l i c) Those Odomants are besieging my garlic! ( G r abs a sp r ing g a r l i c
f rom the t e e th of one of the so ld i e rs) Give it back!
Once they get a bit of garlic into them they turn into fighting cocks!
DICAEOPOLIS: (A t the E xe c . C ommi t t e e . F uming wi th a nge r) Are you lot
going to sit there and watch as a bunch of barbarians do this to me, in my
own country? (No r esponse f r om the C ommi t t e e) Right! Then I insist that 6
Assembly should be dismissed right now! Zeus has spoken. He has sent us
a signal. I have felt a drop of rain on my head! DICAEOPOLIS: (T a k e s the top of f a nd t a k es a sn i f f) Yuk! Pthuh! HERALD: Right! The Assembly is dismissed! The Thracians may come
back the day after tomorrow. DICAEOPOLIS: A l l st a nd up a nd l e a ve , wh i l e D i c a eopo l is is f ight ing wi th one of the
st a rving Thr a c i a ns ove r h is g a r l i c . The Pnyx is c l e a r ed a nd tu rned into the
f r on t o f E u r i p i d e s
DICAEOPOLIS: Damned thieves! Odomantian soldiers! Thieves, damned (Se es D oub l egod a pp ro a ch ing, out of b r e a th)
chasing me. Acharnians are DICAEOPOLIS:
DOUBLEGOD: I was on my way here, bringing you the peace treaties I
procured for you with Sparta, and I was running as fast as I could but then,
somehow, some old Acharnians, tough bits of stick the lot of them, hearts of
oak, twisted old soldiers from the days of Marathon, tough as maple and
steel and rock, sniffed me out and they all came after me, yelling at me,
ou, most godbringing peace treaties from Sparta
following me with shouts.
DICAEOPOLIS: Never mind their shouting. Have you brought me the
DOUBLEGOD: Of course! (B r ings out of h is c lo a k th r e e sma l l wine
bot t l es) I brought you three types to try. ( H a nds h im one) Here! This one
here is a five-year one. Taste it! DOUBLEGOD: 191
DOUBLEGOD: ( H a nds h im a nothe r bot t l e) All right, taste this one, then.
-year treaty. What do you think?
DICAEOPOLIS: (Sme l l s th is one a lso and is st i l l unsa t isf i e d) Naaaah! Very
sour! It really smells strongly of delegates going around the cities urging
their allies to get a move on with the war preparation.
DOUBLEGOD: (Anxious th a t the A ch a rn i ans might a ppe a r a ny se cond,
h a nds h im a th i rd bot t l e) Well, this one is a thirty-year treaty. For both sea
and land. Quick, have a taste!
DICAEOPOLIS: (Sme l l s i t a nd f inds i t most a g r e e a b l e . ) Mmmmm! What a
delicious, scrumptious aroma. (Sme l ls a g a in) Ah, yes! This is the scent of
(t a k es a nothe r wh i f f) let me see,
re does not utter (T a k es ye t a nothe r wh i f f , then puts h is e a r to the mouth of the bot t l e) This
and pour libations and drink it to the very last drop and wish the Acharnians
all the joy in the world. Loud shout ing of the a pp ro a ch ing A cha rn i a ns.
And I, n
to celebrate the Dionysiac festival.
DOUBLEGOD: (A wa r e of the no ises) And I shall rush off before the
Acharnians get me! E xi t D oub l egod, st a ge L e f t a nd D i c a eopo l is goes into h is house . A moment
l a t e r the cho rus rushes in, St age Right . They a r e the A cha rni a ns who a r e
pu rsu ing D oub l egod. V e ry o ld, out of b r e a th, in pu rsu i t of D oub l egod. They
a r e runn ing a l l a round the st age look ing fo r h im. 7 P a r a dos (204-236) (translated by David Johnston)
He has escaped us
Alas, how wretched are my advanced years
This would not have happened
In my younger days
Charcoal slung on my back, I kept up with Phayllus, running A sharpened reed deep into my enemy
Push it in till its end
So they will never trample my vines again
We must seek out this man
Across the face of the land
Until his lair is discovered
To beat him with stones
To beat him with stones! And this so-called herald of wine
Would have easily been mine
Would have escaped nobody
Would have not scurried away CHORUS:
Stone him!... CHORUS LEADER:
But my legs are stiff now
And poor Lacratides
He feels that his feet are just too heavy DICAEOPOLIS: (Shouts f rom wi th in h is house) Quiet! Quiet please, all!
Reverence from all of you, please! Reverence! E p i so d e 1 (237-488) 238
CHORUS 1: Sushhh Quiet a minute! Listen, f
( T h e y a l l p r i c k t h e i r e a r s) We must follow him
We must follow him D i c a eopo l is comes out of h is house , fo l lowe d by h is d a ughte r a nd two CHORUS:
He, O Father Zeus and the gods
Made a treaty with our enemies B l ond i e
house , st a nd ing by the window, wa t ch ing them. Though his hateful war
Grows through my support
To vindicate the destruction of my home DICAEOPOLIS: Reverence, reverence all! Basket bearer at the front!
Blondie! Hold that cock straight! Put the basket down here, please daughter,
so that we can begin the sacrifice. I will not rest
Until I vengefully plant They wa l k to the a l t a r of D ionysus upon wh i ch the d aught e r puts the b a sk e t . 8
DAUGHTER: Mum, bring me the ladle so that I can spread the sacred
potion on the bread. Mothe r obeys d a ught e r , who so l emn ly pou rs the pot ion onto the b r e a d.
D i c a e o po l i s obs e r v e s a nd ,
, he t a k es up a r eve r ent i a l
a t t i tude a nd, wi th a supe rviso ry g l a nc e a l l a round h im, demands a t t ent ion
f r om a l l . (263-279 translated by David Johnston)
Comrade of Bacchus
My fellow reveler, night rambler, adulterer, lover of little boys
After six years
I salute you DICAEOPOLIS: Right! (B lond i e t a k es th is a s a cue to st and st r a ight a g a in r espe c t ful ly. The se cond sl a ve a lso a d justs h is postu r e .)
Oh, Great Lor
allowing me, along with my own folks, to celebrate the Rural Dionysia and
for releasing us from the burdens of war. Through our offerings I ask you,
Lord, to let our Thirty-year Peace Treaty be joyous to us all.
(To h is d a ught e r) Now, sweetie, mind how you carry the basket around.
( D a ugh t e r p i c k s u p t h e b a s k e t )
keep up a stern face.
( D a ught e r t r i es. She wa l ks a he a d a l i t t l e a nd D i c a eopo l is t a l ks sa r c a st i c a l ly
b e h i nd h e r
yes! And, no doubt the two of you will produce a couple of little weasels,
just like you: morning farts instead of morn
lazing about all day!
(Loude r now, a dd r essing he r) And watch out that no one in the I made a treaty
On my own behalf
You have delivered me from my troubles and my woes
Now I have peace
It is more pleasing
O Phales (Phales)
To come upon the buxom maiden stealing wood
That Thracian woman
From the stony region, gonna grab her around the waist sl a ves) pinches your little jewels. Lift her up
Wrestle her to the ground
and do her (To B lond i e) Blondie! You and I will walk behind her bearing the sacred
phallus. ( C h ides h im) Erectly! (B lond i e a d justs) I shall now sing the phallic
song. You, wife, watch from the house. O Phales
My Phales (Phales)
Come have a post debauchery drink with us at dawn ( I n t on e s r e l i g i ous l y a s t h e y s t a r t w a l k i ng a r ound t h e a l t a r . )
A cup of Peace
The shield hangs useless over the sparks of my hearth Sudden ly the A cha rn i a ns jump out in f ront of them ye l l ing and th rowing
s t on e s a t t h e m . 9 280
despicable man, hit him! Come on, men, stone him! b a sk e t , pot a nd ph a l lus- a nd f l e e into
the house , sl a mming f i rm the doo r beh ind them. signed a truce with a people whose word is not bo und by either altar or faith
or Honor to their word. How could that be a good deed?
DICAEOPOLIS: Because, men, we blame the Spartans too much! I know
for certain that the Spartans are not the sole cause of all our problems. DICAEOPOLIS: ( F rom the w indow) 311
CHORUS: Is that right, you sly creep? They are not the cause o f our
problems? You dare say this to us so blatantly and expect us to spare you? CHORUS: DICAEOPOLIS:
can prove to you that they are also the victims of many of our own doings! DICAEOPOLIS: But why, dear, elderly Acharnians?
CHORUS: You dare ask why? You slimy, disgusting, traitor! You dare look
us in the face after you went and signed up a treaty with our enemy, all on
why I did that. Listen and let me explain it to you. CHORUS: ( F uming wi th a ng e r) Ooooh! You dare defend our enemies like
that! This is so awful! So terrible! (Puts h is h a nd to h is he a r t) Ohhhh! My
heart is boiling!
(ind i c a t ing the a ud i enc e),
CHORUS: on the chopping block!
aitor, neighbors, and beat him till an army cloak!
CHORUS: Listen to you? Liste
stones in a minute!
friends, stop and listen to me!
sandals for our brave, young Horsemen, one day. As for you, long speeches
DICAEOPOLIS: Dear friends! Forget the Spartans for a minute
getting this treaty.
DICAEOPOLIS: What black anger is burning your heart, Acharnians!
you listen to me? Will you really not listen to me?
CHORUS: Absolutely not!
CHORUS: Kill me if I ever listen to you!
DICAEOPOLIS: No, Acharnians, I beg you!
for yours! I have here as hostage the dearest of your friends! ( H e d isa ppe a rs
into the house .) 10
CHORUS: There! Now put your dagger down!
CHORUS: What does this threat mean, neighbors? Does he have one of our
? ba g fu l l of ch a r co a l i n
the co a l dust . The A ch a rn i ans a r e ho r ro r -st ruc k by th is. The sc ene p a rod i es
Telephus, in wh i ch T e l ephus ho lds host a ge the
b a by O r est es, son of A g a memnon, l e a de r of the G r e e k fo r c es in the T ro j a n
W a r . T h e p a r o d y w i l l r e su m e a l i t t l e l a t e r i n t h e p l a y .
DICAEOPOLIS: All right then. Cast your stones at me if you wish. But
of you love your coal
How much do you love
CHORUS: (To h is f r i ends) On, no!
( E xa mines
mo r e c lose ly the b a g a nd r e cogn izes i t) And that bag! I recogniz
from my village. (Shouts a t D i c a eopo l is)
thinking is all wrong! Nonononononono!
DICAEOPOLIS: ( F e igns a mu rde rous d isposi t ion)
and you can scream all you like!
CHORUS: No, please! This dear little bag is as old as we are. We grew up DICAEOPOLIS: d you? Well now DICAEOPOLIS: Oh yeah? Check your cloaks please and see that there are
no stones hiding in there! T h e A c h a r n i a n s a l l sh a k e t h e i r c l o a k s t o g i v e p r o o f t h a t t h e r e a r e n o s t o n e s
All shaken out.
count of three, put your dagger down. (A l l toge the r )
three! . At the D i c a eopo l is d rops h is d agge r a nd comes out of the house .
ed them! And if something did happen to them, it would be
the fault of their own neighbors. (Sh a k es the b l a c k dust f rom h is body) Poor
little bag. It got so frightened it spat out ink, like a squid
such awful manners, you Acharnians! All that shouting and stone throwing!
ead on the
block for my good arguments. I do love my life, you know!
CHORUS: (St i l l a ng ry) Well, come on then! Bring out your block and start
talking, you scum.
there is to say. CHORUS: You chose the means of judgment, so go get your block! coals! D i c a eopo l is goes into the house a nd comes out a g a in wi th the chopp ing
b loc k wh i ch he puts down. DICAEOPOLIS: First cast away your stones! The A ch a rn i a ns do so. 365
DICAEOPOLIS: Here we are. One block to act as court. (T a k es up postu r e
a s i f to ma k e a spe e ch) Ahem! I am a bad speaker, I know, but I just must 11
ot one to hide behind my
( L oo k s a b o u t h i m w i t h
some t r ep id a t ion)
, though. Because I know for
certain what peasants are like. They love it when some damned sycophant
comes along and flatters them and their city -rightly or wrongly. The
see these mongrels are traitors in it for the money and
f the men, I know their souls. I know in; but his body is there, lying down, constructing a play.
DICAEOPOLIS: Oh, dear Euripides, how fortunate you are to have such a
witty slave who can answer the door with such oh-so-clever remarks. Call
him for me, please!
SERVANT: had a few words to say about Cleon. Well, Cleon immediately rushed him
off to the Council and there spat out a whole tongue -torrent of spinning
abuses and lies and crap about him that the poor man nearly drowned in all
the injustice. So, in view of this, let me dress in the clothes which would
draw the most pity from you. I need to look like a real pauper, a real beggar. DICAEOPOLIS:
the door down. (Shouts) Hey, Euripides! (No a nswe r) Euripides! ( No
a nswe r a g a in)
me in before so let me in again, now! Euryyyyyyy!
from Cholleidae County! 385
CHORUS: Why all these twists and turns and tricky delays? For all we care
you can get yourself disguised as The Invisible Man, if you like! Go down
to Hades, get
ugly, hairy helmet and cover your ugly face
with it, or go and get one of Sisyph
going to wait any longer! EURIPIDES: ( F rom wi th in) I have not eternal time for ye to waste. The A ch a rn i a ns r e c ede to the b a c kg round wh i l e the next sc ene unfo lds.
DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e) This is where I must show what stuff
my soul is made of
Euripides. (Wa l k s ove r to
E u r ip ides
Hellooooo! Hey boy, are you
there? Slave? Where are you?
SERVANT: (Th rough a h a l f-opened doo r) Yes? Who is it?
DICAEOPOLIS: Is your master, Euripides, home? DICAEOPOLIS:
EURIPIDES: ( F rom wi th in) Impossible!
EURIPIDES: ( F rom wi th in)
my chronological lot! I shall not despise E u r ip i des is ro l l ed out , r e c l ining in bed, a l though he wi l l spe a k a s i f
spe a k ing f rom h igh a bove . A t h is b edside comes a nd si ts h is sl a ve . O n the
wa l l a nd e lsewhe r e h a ng va r ious o ld r a gs and b i ts a nd p i e c es of the a t r i c a l
costumes a nd othe r p rops. Both E u r ip ides a nd h is se rva nt a r e we a r ing
r a gged c lothes. F rom the sc rol ls a nd qu i l ls st r ewn a bout the bed ,
o b v i o u s E u r i p i d e s h a d b e e n w r i t i ng . SERVANT: (Ponde rously, pseudo-ph i losoph i c a l ly, condesc end ing ly) He is DICAEOPOLIS:
Dear Lord! Euripides! DICAEOPOLIS: (T r i es to wo r k i t out) He is a n d EURIPIDES: (M a k es h imse l f c omfo r t a b l e in h is bed) For what relief dost
thou cry? SERVANT: Just as I said, old man! In an
l os t ) (se e s th a t D i c a eopo l is is DICAEOPOLIS: E u r i p id e s 12
They rest upon there, atop Thyeste
here? On solid ground? No wonder all your characters are l
at your clothes! Rags! No wonder your characters are also paupers and
beggars! Euripides, I beg you! On my knee caps. Lend me some rags from
some old tragedy of yours so that I can make a long speech to the chorus
EURIPIDES: What raimant do you desire? That which I used for Oeneus,
that poor, unfortunate hero?
DICAEOPOLIS: No, not Oeneus someone worse off.
EURIPIDES: Blind Phoenix?
DICAEOPOLIS: (Th inks a moment) No
EURIPIDES: (To the se rva nt , a ng r i ly) For what rags doth this visitor
yearn? (B a c k to D i c a eopo l is) Do you mean those of wretched Philoctetes?
DICAEOPOLIS: No, no, even wretecheder than him!
EURIPIDES: I know it! You do mean the squalid garb of Bellerophon?
That sad, lame creature?
DICAEOPOLIS: EURIPIDES: Ah! Now I know the very man whose vestiges you pursue !
The Mysian, Telephus!
s! The Mysian! EURIPIDES: (To the se rva nt) Boy, give him Telephu S e r v a n t g e t s up a nd l oo k s f o r t h e m . DICAEOPOLIS: (T a k e s the costume a nd exa mines i t . Show is to the pub l i c .
rough a l l the ho l es a nd
b r ings the r a gs c lose to h is f a c e , wh i ch the a ud i enc e c an se e th rough the
ho l es.) Oh, holy Zeus! Zeus, whose eye sees through all things (st rugg l es to
p u t o n t h e c l o t h e s . H i s p h a l l u s i s i n t h e w a y a n d s t i c k s o u t f r om u n d e r t h e
tun i c and (ind i c a t ing h is pha l lus) sees below all things! Oh, Zeus, please
(Se es a c a p on the wa l l)
Euripides, since you were kind enough to lend me these rags, could you also
lend me something which will really matc h them? That little cap there,
but not to look
s put it. (I nd i c a t ing the
a ud i e n c e )
gaping at my subtle verbiage and loquacity. ( C huc k l es wi c k e d ly) What
EURIPIDES: (To the se rva nt) Bestow upon him the cap. To cover the dense
and subtle machinations within thy cranium.
DICAEOPOLIS: (T a k e s the c a p) Bless you, friend and to hell with
Telephus! Oh, I can feel my brain flooding with all these subtle little
phrases of yours. (Looks a bout h im) But I think I also need a walking stick.
EURIPIDES: (Nods to the se r va nt , who goes a nd b r ings a wa l k ing st i c k to
D i c a eopo l is) Take it. N
nough! Evacuate my marble abode! la DICAEOPOLIS: SERVANT: ( H a nds them to D i c a eopo l is) Here you are. DICAEOPOLIS: ( F e igns hu r t sou l) Ooooh! (Add r essing h is sou l) Poor
many items? No, I need to be a bit gluey here. One of those really oily
beggars. (B a c k to E u r ip ides) Euripides, please give me that little cane lamp
EURIPIDES: What is thine purpose with that cane lamp holder?
DICAEOPOLIS: 13 EURIPIDES: ( G e t t ing imp a t i e nt) Know that thou vexest me and must ye
begone from my house!
DICAEOPOLIS: Oh, all right, all right and may the gods grant you your
(Imp i sh ly conf iding to the a ud i enc e) Selling cabbages,
EURIPIDES: ( F u r ious) Now go away!
DICAEOPOLIS: All right, all right! ( G oes towa rds the ex i t but r emembe rs)
What about a litt
EURIPIDES: (Nods to the se r va nt , who f inds i t and h a nds i t to D i c a eopo l is)
Take it and go fuck yourself! You are a pox upon my house.
DICAEOPOLIS: (T a k e s the cup a nd ex a mines i t . Then r emembe rs.) Oh, no!
How this hurts! Euripides
dearest Euripides, friend! One mo
know one of those with a hole broken in it
EURIPIDES: Sir! Ye thieve the right heart of my tragedy! DICAEOPOLIS: ( E xa mines t he l e a ves a nd puts them in the l a mp ho lde r)
, dear Euripides
( M ov e s t o w a r d s
the exi t but onc e a ga in he r emembe rs) Oh, no! I forgot again! Darling
e ire of
s would say, hey? But I forgot the most important
thing, Euripides. Sweet, sweet, Euripides
you? Sooooo much! Kill me if I ask you for any
outEURIPIDES: (I nt e r rupts h im i nfu r i a t ed) The man mocks us! (To the
se rva nt) Bolt the fasteners to our residence! T h e s e r v a n t i s ob e d i e n t . B a c k t o t h e
chopp ing b loc k is st i l l the r e . T he cho rus is slowly moving in on h im.
DICAEOPOLIS: (To h imse l f)
got to do the whole thing without the parsley now! Poor soul! Have you any
about to make a speech in
favor of the Spartans! (A f t e r a f ew moments, he sighs a nd l i f ts h is ch in up.)
All right then. Head erect, my soul,
( M ov e s t o
ma k e a spe e ch but se es the chopp ing b loc k a nd r e co i ls) ( T h e s e r v a n t h a nds i t t o D i c a e o po l i s , . ) Euripides. How could you go wrong? Courage, my soul! Go ( P u t s h i s p h a l l us o n t h e b l o c k ) Now, take it and be off!
DICAEOPOLIS: ( E xa mines the cup)
( H e s i t a t e s)
without it! Sweet, sweet, Euripides
Just give me some of those cabbage leaves your mother throws out. I need
to put them in this cane lamp holder. (The se rva nt h a s p roduc ed the l e a ves)
EURIPIDES: Gone are the trappings of my dramaturgy! Behold! I am a
ruin! A go n (489-571) Telephus r esumes,
insp i r ed by a sc ene in wh i ch the begg a r ly k ing p l e a ds h is c ase to the G r e e k
CHORUS: at are you doing? What are you going to say? You against all of us! (Tu rns to h is co l l e a gues wi th su rp r ise ) The
bother him at all, men! (B a c k to D i c a eopo l is) All right then, speak, if you 14
want! be ing pe rsu a ded by the a rgument , into two c a mps. , a s they a r e 496
DICAEOPOLIS: Well, here I am, a pauper and a writer of comedies, no
less! And I am about to speak to you, my dear audience of matters that are
important to our city. You all think this is a dreadful thing to do, I know.
about justice, no matter how hard it sounds to your ears. The things I will
you, not one, so our leader, Cleon (sp i ts a t
accuse me as he did last year
celebrating our own Lenaea festival, no foreigners of any sort, dependents
or allies. No one! What we have here is thoroughly w
us. No chaff
the sound of h is n a me ) Folks, I really hate the Spartans. I really do, and I hope that Poseidon, their
own God, sends them a damned huge earthquake and sinks all their houses,
because the scum have torn down my o wn vines, as well. But then,
speaking to my friends here, can we really blame the Spartans for this?
Because some of our own men, some Athenians
Athens, listen carefull
Athens the city but
Athenians, the men. Some men! Or, rather some vile and hateful morons,
losers, dishonorable scum. Human forgeries, strange strangers have begun
making accusations about some products from Megara, calling them
Megarian cloaks, then the
cucumbers, and then the rabbits and then the little piggies and then the
garlic, and then the rock salt! No sooner would they see anyone selling kidnapping our own whores, two of them, belonging to A
own whore. So there you have it! The whole war amongst all the Greeks
begins here; because of three whores! Because you see, Pericles our own,
Olympian marvel, our own glorious Pericles got so angry that he began
shooting lightning out of his mouth and making thunder and stirring the
whole of Greece with laws which sounded like an old drinking song:
not remain on the land or in the marketplace or
on the sea or in the sky
starving, in fact. So what could they do? They began begging the
Spartans to reverse that whore-begotten law! They had asked us, Athenians,
many times but we had refused. And here begins the clamor of the clashing
shields. One may say that there was no need for that but then one might also
ask, well then, what was it we needed to do? If, for example, someone
discovered that the Spartans sailed over, say, to one of our tiny islands,
Seriphos, for example, and smuggled out of there some little puppy, what
would you do, sta
launching three hundred ships immediately, and the city would be drowned
under the noise of soldiers choosing their captain and distributing their pay,
of the figure heads of
Athena were being re-gilded and the Piraeus market would be buzzing with
crowds distributing wheat at one stall, men buying wine skins and oar straps
and wine-brimming jars at another stall, and garlic and oil and sacks of
onions at yet another stall,
flutes, whistles, whistling commands to the oa ( I n d i c a t i ng h i s c o s t um e )
And do we not know that Telephus himself would also be acting thus? If we
Well, so far, we might call this a petty crime, the sort that we do
But then these drunken fools, they went to Megara
and kidnapped their whore, Simetha. Well, we all know Simetha is By now the A cha rn i a ns a r e spl i t into two sides.
SEMI-CHORUS 1: (Se es the sp l i t in the r a nks a nd ge ts ve ry a ng ry) Is that
right, you screwed up piece of disgrace? You you, a mere beggar dare
o be an 15
SEMI-CHORUS 2: By Zeus! I think that every word Dicaeopolis said was
the truth. Not a single lie among them! DICAEOPOLIS:
know I said a little too much! SEMI-CHORUS 1: ( C h a rg ing towa rds D i c a eopo l is, int end ing to be a t h im
up) Truth or not, there was no need to mention all this stuff. This boldness LAMACHUS: What did you say about Athens? Tell me! SEMI-CHORUS 2: ( T rying to stop C ho rus 1) Hey, hold it! Hold it! What
are you getting angry for? Stop! Stop! Hey listen! ( C ho rus 1 stops a nd looks
th r e a t en ing ly b a c k a t C ho rus 2, who sudden ly be comes f r ight ened.) If you O the r membe rs of the cho rus come a nd g r a b h im no isi ly f rom the wa ist .
SEMI-CHORUS 1: O Lamachus! You, whose eyes are like lightning!
Wearer of the terrifying helmet! Friend and relative! Come and help me!
(To the a ud i enc e) And you, captains and generals and attackers of walls,
E p i so d e 2 (572-625)
No isy, bomb a st i c , ma r t i a l f a nf a r e int roduc es L ama chus, who is fu l ly a rmed,
wi th swo rd a nd sh i e ld a t the r e a dy. H e is we a r ing a he lme t wi th a lud i c rous
a bund a nc e of p lumes and f e a the rs. A huge b r ight a nd f r ighten ing go rgon is
p a int ed on h is sh i e ld. L ama chus wa s a r e a l pe rson a nd wa s a gene r a l a t the
t ime . In the A then i a n democ r a cy, the posi t ion of gene r a l was a n e l e c t ed
of f i c e .
LAMACHUS: Who shouted the war cry? Who needs my help? What
clamor must I join? Who stirred the Gorgon on my shield?
DICAEOPOLIS: Oh, (S a r c a st i c a l ly) Here he
feathered crests and armies!
SEMI-CHORUS 1: (I nd i c a t ing D i c a eopo l is) This man has been saying
nasty things about our city for hours now!
LAMACHUS: ( To D i c a eopo l is) You? A beggar? You dare speak against
Athens? A beggar dares speak against mighty Athens? DICAEOPOLIS: ( F e igns n a use a )
(Ind i c a t ing the sh i e ld) can you put that
beastie gorgon of yours away?
LAMACHUS: ( Moves sh i e ld a wa y f rom h im.) There!
LAMACHUS: ( D oes so) There!
that feather from your helmet! ok like a wash basin. Now give me 585
LAMACHUS: ( D oes so) Here, take it!
DICAEOPOLIS: ( H e t i c k l es h is f a c e wi th i t) Yiiiik! Now hold on to my
head so I can vomit. These plumes make me so sick!
LAMACHUS: ( T r i e s to sn a t ch th e f e a the r a wa y f rom h im) Oi! What do you
LAMACHUS: ( F uming wi th a nge r) ! DICAEOPOLIS:
fo r t e! Your fo r t e is to
decapitate pricks. ( D i c a eopo l is shows h is ph a l lus) Here! Come on, do
the tools you need! 16
beggar? LAMACHUS: Oh Democracy! Do we have to put up with this? DICAEOPOLIS: Me? A mere beggar? DICAEOPOLIS: Not unless you get paid for it, right? LAMACHUS: Of course you are. What else? 620
LAMACHUS: (I nfu r i a t ed) 595
simple Private Dick, whereas you! As soon as the war starts you rush off
and become a Fully Paid Dick!
LAMACHUS: (I nd ign a nt) I was elected!
DICAEOPOLIS: Sure you were. By three cuckoo birds! T
to the front line while you, you, young pricklets run away from it. Some of
you go off to Thrace, drawing three drachmas a day! Like Tisa-bloodyfanny-pus and Pano-bloody-prickatus and then there are those near Chari bloody-tus and others around Chaon. As well as the other lot: Geresbloody-godsgift-prickus and Pede-bloody-rastus and those at Kamarine and
Gela and Gela-not!
LAMACHUS: (P roud ly) Every one of them elected!
DICAEOPOLIS: So why is it that you lot somehow always get paid,
whereas those (I nd i c a t ing some membe rs of the cho rus) poor old buggers,
get nothing? You, Marilades, old age is closing in on you. Have you ever
been made an ambassador? (M a r i l a des sh a k es h is he a d) See? He says
hat about you
Drakyllos? You Euphorides or you, Prinides? Has any one of you ever been
to Ekbatana or Chaon? (They a l l sh a k e the i r he a ds) See? They all said no.
But ask Lamachus and ask
to know these places very well. People like these two who, only yesterday,
because of their mounting debts and unpaid subscriptions, folks would yell
right! with the navy and with the infantry! With all my might and strength! E x i t s i n a ng e r . S i m i l a r m a r t i a l f a n f a r e .
DICAEOPOLIS: And I shall announce that all the Peloponnesians and the
Megarians and the Boeotians may come and buy and sell from me as they
(Shouts a t the ba c k of L a ma chus) to forget about Lamachus! E xi ts a lso in a nge r .
P a r a b a sis (626-718)
CHORUS: The man has completely changed the minds of the people about
the peace treaties.
But, men, and march to the business at hand. Since the days our poet has first begun putting on plays, he had never used
the opportunity to boast about how fantastic he is at it. However, seeing that
his enemies have managed to persuade the gullible Athenians that he has
made fun of them and berated our city, he finds himself today, forced to
answer these charges.
ple, the fact that you
are no longer so easily persuaded by foreigners who come here trying to
seduce you and cheat you with flattery, is due to his good teaching.
The fact that you are no longer the gorking twits that you once were, is
thanks to Aristophanes. In earlier days, all these foreign ambassadors had to
do was to call you violet-crowned men
you bouncing on your asses. Or, if one of them tickled your vanity with
anything he wanted. well, our poet, simply by the fact that he warned you against these awful
He has also shown the governments of our subject states how our sort of
Democracy is really governing them!
Now, the next time these ambassadors come to pay their taxes, they would
want to see the best of your poets, the one who put himself in so much
danger so as to show the Athenians what justice is.
His fame and audacity has reached so far that the Great King of Persia
himself, examining the Spartan ambassadors about the fate of our war,
asked them first who has the best navy and then he wa nted to know about
which side the poet says nasty things. strength which burns like a spark amidst the coals of oak! Show us the
spark which flares with the breeze to fry the frying fish for some and to
bake a cake or two for others, while others yet a slave or two knead
bread or spin with spinning hands the Thasian appetizers. So come to us,
neighbors to you, one and all with rustic fervor in your song. (The C ho rus r e sumes i ts d ispensing of advi c e .)
We oldsters accuse the city of not cherishing our old age in a manner
worthy of all our naval exploits. Because instead of respect, we suffer
terrible indignities and, as aged men, the youth is constantly taking us to
as well as deaf and overused flute holes. Our walking sticks are the only
Poseidon, our only savior and support.
shadow of justice! Whereas our prosecutor, a youth himself and a lusty
youth at that wanting to show just how lusty his youth is at our
expense, of course bombards us with huge, well-rounded missiles of
words. d demand to keep our
special place, Aegina. Not because they want the little island for
extra territory but because they can then claim our poet to be one of them.
And you, you should never give him up, because his comedies will always
be a fight for justice. Well some young and lusty, self-important prosecutor, hauls him up onto
the stand and sets upon him with traps and lures and with muddying the
waters and leaving the poor man, confounded, mumbling and withdrawing
from court with a stinging fine. Outside, the poor gentleman, as old as the
story of Tithonus, sees his friends and begins to whimper and cry that the your lot a happier o
holes or making you false
promises, or giving you some sleeky trickery, or hocus-pocus or raining
praises upon you. Just good old, pure teaching. The best of it.
As for Cleon, let him do his worst. His schemes and tricks will bear no fruit.
Justice and the Good are his allies; and good o
caught hanging around the city like him, a coward and a letch-ass! (The C ho rus r i ses in song.)
How can this be fair, to ruin such an elderly man in a place where the
speeches are timed and regulated? Is that a court of justice or what? A man
who suffered so much and spilled so much manly, hot sweat fighting at
Marathon? A Man, worthy of the name, worthy of our city? One minute we
are fighting at Marathon and the next we are pursued by idiots until we are
ruined! What would smart-ass orator Grabberman say to that? ( T h e c h o r us s i ngs a nd d a n c e s a n i n t e r l ud e . )
So, come to us, O Muse! Show us now your fiery glow and your Acharnian (The C ho rus f inishe s the i r ch a nt .)
The cho rus sings of a n o ld po l i t i c i an n a med Thucyd ides (not the f a mous 18
h isto r i a n of the sa me n a me ), who wa s a r iva l of P e r i c l es but was now in h is
sevent i es a nd h ad suf f e r ed a br e a kdown when p rose cut ed in a cou r t c a se .
Or Thucydides, another poor old warrior! Is it right that such a man, bent
with years to be lost in a real brutal, Scythian type of legal desert against
Kephisodemos, another savage, crap-spitting prosecutor?
I was so sad, I cried when I saw this hateful archer torture this old man. By
Demeter, when Thucydides was a young man, when he was the true
and he would have floored ten hefty wrestlers, no lesser than Euathlos
himself. He would have shouted down three thousand archers and his own
arrows would have pierced through them and through their whole family
court. Let the old man have his toothless old lawyer and let the young man
have his young Alcibiades, you know that wide-holed chatterbox son of
Kleinias. So make such laws as necessary to have old men brought to court
by old men and young men by one of their own age. A c h a r n i a n s w i t hd r a w t o t h e s i d e s .
D u r i ng t h e P a r a b a s i s , D i c a e o po l i s , w i t h t h e h e l p o f h i s s l a v e s , h i s w i f e a nd
d a ught e r , h a ve si l ent ly se t up a coup l e of ma r k e t st a l ls whe r eupon va r ious
p roduc ts a r e a r r a yed. They me a su r e a sp a c e and d r a w l ines a nd put
The wo r k is comp l e t ed just a s the cho rus h a s f inished spe a k ing.
E ve ryone exc ept D i c a eopo l is h a s gone b a c k into the house . H e h a s just
th a nk ed eve ryone , sma c k ed h is h a nds c l e a n a nd, put t ing on a smi l e of se l f sa t isf a c t ion, t a k es h is p l a c e beh ind one o f the st a l ls to wa i t fo r custome rs. E p i so d e 3 (719-835)
DICAEOPOLIS: (Po int ing a t the bound a r i es he d r ew) Right then! Here are
the boundaries of my market place where everyone, Peloponnesians as well
as Megarians and Boeotians, can come and trade with me and (Shouts a t
L ama chus doo r) Lamachus can go and get stuffed! ( H e ind i c a t es the th r e e
l e a the r wh ips) As inspectors of the market place I appoint these three horse
have no sycop
law pillar and place it right here, so that everyone can see it. G oes into the house . E nt e r a M eg a r i a n wi th h is two d a ughte rs a nd a n
a lmost empty sa c k on h is ba c k .
market! Athenian market, beloved to awl
Megarians, hey there
momma! ( T a k es h is b a g down a nd of f e rs i t to h is d a ught e rs) Come on
, no good daughters of a
father, see if you
t. ( They ex a mine the sa c k a nd f ind on ly some o ld l e a ves wh i ch they
th row down. They sh a k e the i r he a ds) Well then, let yer empty bellies hear
me well nuff: Whaddya prefer be sold or be starved?
DAUGHTERS: Sell us! Sell us!
hat Ah say, too! ( E xa mines them wi th d issa t isf a c t ion)
ake such an obvious loss? (Th ink s fo r a minut e
a nd comes up wi th a so lut ion)
membered an old
turn you both into little pigs! Hee hee hee! ( Looks into
h is sa c k a nd f inds some sma l l hooves) Here we are. Put these on your hands
and feet! ( They do so but the i r postu r e is c a r e l ess) Come on, girls! Try and
look like yer from good stock. Make pretend that a good sow gave birth to
of a real hunger when we get home! ( Looks into h is sa c k a ga in a nd comes
up wi th two snouts wh i ch he ha nds to them) Now put these snouts on. (They
obey and he exa mines them. H e is sa t isf i e d) Now squeeze yourselves into
forget, every now and then squeal and make a grunt, make the
sort of piggy noises that the sacrificial piggies make, alright? (Nods f rom
wi th i n the s a c k )
(Ye l l s) Hey, Dicaeopolis! Dicky
where are you? ( D i c a eopo l is a ppe a rs a t the doo r c a r rying the l a w p i l l a r .)
You want to buy some little piggies? DICAEOPOLIS: Is it garlic, then? 750
DICAEOPOLIS: (V e ry exc i t e d a t the sight of the M eg a r i a n) What? A real
Megarian? MEGARIAN: Garlic? What garlic? Whenever you lot attacke
come charging into our fields like mice and burrow yourselves underground
and rip all their heads off! MEGARIAN: DICAEOPOLIS: So what have you got in here, then? DICAEOPOLIS: Ah, good god, very good! (puts the l a w p i l l a r down) So,
how are things in Megara, then? MEGARIAN: (P roud ly) I am bringing you piggy pussies. Little beauties.
Special. The sort they use for sacrifices. MEGARIAN: (M i se r a b ly) Ah, well! ( G estu r ing a t h is stoma ch) Our bellies
are still singing around the fireplace! 765
DICAEOPOLIS: Oh! Well done! Show me! DICAEOPOLIS: Ah, yes, the stomach and the fireplace! The hungry
stomach and the empty fireplace? All they need is a good flute player, for a
party, right? What else is new? MEGARIAN: Oh ho! You gonna love this! They are so beautiful! Feel
them if you like! They are so plump, so delicious! MEGARIAN: What else? Well, let
market, the politicians were wondering what to do to bring about the
quickest possible death to us all! DICAEOPOLIS:
MEGARIAN: A pussy piglet, I swear! A little sow! DICAEOPOLIS: That would put a certain end to all of your worries then, DICAEOPOLIS:
r e a r s . B e c o m e s mo r e
a nd mo r e susp i c ious.) Pussies? And where do such piggies grow? MEGARIAN: Damn straight! MEGARIAN: DICAEOPOLIS:
these days? DICAEOPOLIS: ( F e e l s a round the sa c k a b i t mo r e .) think MEGARIAN: Wheat? The price of wheat is at an absolute premium! It has
DICAEOPOLIS: ( Nods in symp a thy, then, ind i c a t ing the sa c k) Is this salt
e bringing us? MEGARIAN: Wanna bet? Ho, ho ho! What a silly doubting Dicky you are!
Ha! (To the a ud i enc e)
glets! Could you believe it? I y
MEGARIAN: DICAEOPOLIS: (Look ing even mo r e unc e r t a in) 20
MEGARIAN: (Not g iving a n inch) But of course they are! Of course they
are! By our Grand, Megarian hero, Diocles! They are my very own varie ty.
Whose did you think they were? (Se es th a t D i c a eopo l is is not convinc ed)
Do you want to hear their voice?
MEGARIAN: Right you are! Right, my little piggies, say hello! (S i l enc e
f rom the sa c k . L e a ns ove r a nd, a f t e r sma c k ing one on the he a d, spe a k s
sof t ly but st e rn ly to them.) Se cond d a ught e r eme rges f rom the sa c k .
DICAEOPOLIS: Oh, ho! Well, look at that! These cunts look identical!
MEGARIAN: Same momma, same daddy! (I nd i c a t ing the i r cunts) And
when these little pretties grow up
l be perfect for the altar of Aphrodite!
DICAEOPOLIS: altar! (The g i r ls sque a l .) MEGARIAN:
they? But sh
heart! And, course, after th
of these little piglets is so scrumptious! MEGARIAN: Now, was that a pussy or not? DICAEOPOLIS: Can they eat without their mother yet? D i c a eopo l is is a bout to l a ugh but cont ro ls h imse l f . Inst e a d he mumb l es,
of f . MEGARIAN: Course! As well as without their daddy!
DICAEOPOLIS: the d a ught e rs jumps up! DICAEOPOLIS: (To the d a ught e rs) Hohohohoho!
MEGARIAN: In five ye they like eating mostly? MEGARIAN: DICAEOPOLIS: (Bu r sts into l a ught e r) (The g i r ls sque a l .)
mma! DICAEOPOLIS: 800
DICAEOPOLIS: MEGARIAN: What? Cou (The g i r ls sque a l .) 785
DICAEOPOLIS: (Wa l k s a round the d a ught e r a nd inspe c ts he r c lose ly) But DICAEOPOLIS: And figs from Phibalos? MEGARIAN: DICAEOPOLIS: You eat figs, too, do you? (The g i r ls sque a l .) (The g i r ls sque a l exc i t ed ly.) em and the flesh self! 21 DICAEOPOLIS: How loudly you squeal about the figs! (Shouts towa rds
the house) Blondie! MEGARIAN: B l ond i e a pp e a r s a t t h e doo r . INFORMER:
enemy products! DICAEOPOLIS: Blondie, bring us some figs from
these piggies will eat them. MEGARIAN: Here we go again! This is the sort of crap that caused our
problems in the first place! ( H e g r a bs a t the ba g p rot e c t ive ly) B lond i e d isa ppe a rs into the house , comes b a c k wi th the f igs. As soon a s the INFORMER:
d r a g the sa c k a wa y) Let go of the sack! DICAEOPOLIS: Wow! They sure love their figs! Look how greedily MEGARIAN: (Shouts) Dicaeopolis! Dicky! A snitch is here and he says
gonna expose me! Dicky, help! piggies are from, Gluttony? DICAEOPOLIS: ( F rom wi th i n. V e ry a ng ry.) Who? An informer? Who?
? ( C ome s out of the house , rushes to h is st a l l , pu l ls
down the wh ip and looks fu r iously a t the info rme r . Add r essing the wh ip.) 810
MEGARIAN: Ah, sorry, bud
DICAEOPOLIS: I love the way they eat! - porkers? market place, shall we? (To the info rme r) Now! What sort of exposure have
we here, hey?
INFORMER: ( F r ight ened a b i t but de f i a nt)
Should I not expose the enemy? MEGARIAN:
MEGARIAN: stop it now! ( H e t r i e s to (To the a ud i enc e) Oh Hermes! God of xposing the enemy. 827
DICAEOPOLIS: ( C omes a round the st a l l to the I nfo rme r a nd ch a ses h im
a wa y) Piss off! Go and do your exposing somewhere else! E x i t t h e I n f o r m e r . T h e p i g l e t s c o m e ou t a g a i n . D i c a eopo l is goes to h is house , stops a t the po r ch whe r e the g a r l i c is
h a ng ing, looks a t a nd ponde rs ove r the i r d imin ish ing q ua nt i ty fo r a moment MEGARIAN: What a slimy plague this species must be to you Athenians,
Ah bet? goes inside to ge t the sa l t . Wh i l e a l l th is is go ing on, an Info rme r ent e rs,
b r a nd ish ing a f e a r fu l t runcheon a nd look ing ve ry me a n. H e a pp ro a ches the
M eg a r i a n a nd h is d aught e rs. The d a ught e rs se e h im a nd, f r ight ened,
sc r amb l e b a c k into the sa c k . DICAEOPOLIS: ( H a nds h im the goods)
string of garlic and the salt, and good luck to you!
MEGARIAN: W INFORMER: You! Where are you from? talk about luck in Megara any more! 22
DICAEOPOLIS: A bit too much Good luck MEGARIAN: (To h is d a ught e rs) Well, my little piglets, even without your
daddy, now, you should still try and get whatever they give
salt, prick. Take whatever they give
. Or that other slimy character, Artemos, who calls himself a musician and
whose armpits stin
Or that crook, Pauson
hungry O d e (836-859)
CHORUS: toss insults at you any more, and
Lysistratos, that piece of shame from
for longer than thirty days a month! E p i so d e 4 (860-970)
E nt e r a Theb a n, wi th Ismen i a s, h is sl a ve . Both a r e bu rdened by a g r e a t
ma ny wa r es fo r the ma r k e t . They a r e fo l lowed by some f lut e p l a ye rs. ! himself well, simply by sitting down at his own little market. THEBAN: (I n a gony)
eally stuffed up my shoulder with
all this. Ismenias, put the oregano down gently! And you, Theban
on your bony flutes. And if informers like Ktesias
tears. The musi c is into l e r ab l e fo r D i c a eopo l is a nd the r est . F rom now on, D i c a eopo l is a nd h is f a mi ly inc lud ing h is da ught e r , the two
c o m e a nd go , b r i ng i ng v a r i ous s t u f f
out to the st a l l and t a k ing othe r stuf f b a c k inside , gene r a l ly look ing busy
a nd j o l l y . B l ond i e
a cqu isi t ions. E ve ryone is st i l l the r e when the Boeot i an ent e rs. DICAEOPOLIS: What the hell
ing wasps away from my
gates! How did these children of Cheris, that dreadful bag pipe player, get
to my door? No other man will be able to cheat you with your shopping, Dicaeopolis
by buying everything before you get to the market
before everyone else! Choose your goods at your own pace! Hahahaha! behind
blown off all the tips of my oregano! You want to buy some of my stuff?
birds and beasts! And Prepis that loose-ass
nose) Ewww! s on you. (P inches h is THEBAN: anger, 873
DICAEOPOLIS: A Theban! Breadstick lovers one and all! Welcome!
Greetings, And Cleonymus
of your market without bumping into characters like Hyperbolus, the
you know the
one? The skinhead sort. The one which makes him look like a real
sleazdick! THEBAN: All of Boeo
woodcocks, water fowl, wrens, divers
DICAEOPOLIS: (I nt e r rupts h im)
that drops all the birds fro m the sky!
THEBAN: Ah, but I also bring geese, rabbits, foxes, moles, porcupines,
cats, lyres, martins, otters and Copaic eels. 23 ( P o i n t i ng a t a j a r ) DICAEOPOLIS: Ahhhhhh! Copaic eels! My friend! You have brought me
the most delicious of morsels. Let me say hello to your ee ls! DICAEOPOLIS: THEBAN: (To h is e e ls) Come! Let the eldest of the fifty Copaic water
virgins come out of there and make this stranger happy. THEBAN:
money if I took one of them back with me. Full of dirty monkey business,
they are! DICAEOPOLIS:
poets sighs hot sighs for you and Morychus adores you! Finally, oh, finally,
(To h is s l a ves) Get the grill and the bellows out, boys, and
get the coal for our delicious, darling stranger! Take her in, folks , and even E n t e r N i c a r c h us
d i c t a to r i a l . H e , too, b r a nd ishes a f e a r fu l t runcheon.
DICAEOPOLIS: Nicarchus! THEBAN
beet root! D i c a eopo l is h a nds the e e l to B lond i e
house to p r epa r e the e e l . App rop r i a t e a s we l l a s in a pp ropr i a t e
issue f rom the r e , suggest ing a good t ime in the k i t chen. DICAEOPOLIS: Short but full of venom! no i s e s 895
THEBAN: What about me? Where is my money? NICARCHUS: Then I expose them as enemy products!
THEBAN: (Moc ks h im a nd l a ughs)
Dicky birds? THEBAN: The lot, of course!
DICAEOPOLIS: Tell me then, how much do you want? Or would you
Boeotian THEBAN: wa r es wi th h is t runcheon) Whose THEBAN: Mine. I brought it all the way from Thebes. (Se e s th a t
N i c a r chus is doubt ful) Swear by Zeus! DICAEOPOLIS: The eel is the price of your entry into the market. What
else do you want to sell me? DICAEOPOLIS: ( E xa mines h is wa r e s)
from Phale 910
NICARCHUS: (Po int ing a t the
load is this? NICARCHUS: Yes, I shall expose your Dicky birds as well as you!
THEBAN: Me? What have I done to you? Anchovies 915
NICARCHUS: (Pompously ind i c a t ing the a ud i enc e a nd wi th h is t runcheon
p o i n t i n g a t t h e w a r e s)
brought to this country ENEMY WICKS.
NICARCHUS: Indeed! One man could set a whole fleet on fire with a lamp
CHORUS: DICAEOPOLIS: A whole fleet, with one wick? DICAEOPOLIS:
s used as a pestle to grind lawsuits and foul indictments, a wick to he use of a prick like that, then? NICARCHUS:
DICAEOPOLIS: How? CHORUS: How can anyone feel safe using such a foul-sounding tool? NICARCHUS: A Boeotian can tie the wick to the wings of a mosquito, then
light it, then shove it into the sewer which leads to the docks, wait there for
a strong Northerly wind, which, when it gets there, will make the flames big
enough and strong enough to turn our whole navy into ashes, within
w i t h s a t i s f a c t i on)
(Sma c ks h im on the he a d wi th the but t
of the wh ip) you escaped fart! A spark and a mossy can turn our navy into
ashes? THEBAN: (L a ughs) Yeah! It looks like harvest time! 926
NICARCHUS: ( D ist r essed tu rns to eve ryone a round h im)
DICAEOPOLIS: Grab him! Shut his mouth up! (They a l l a t t a c k a nd g r a b
N i c a r chus) Bring me some of that packing, someone. ( Theb a n h ands h im
some st r a w)
there. CHORUS: (To the Theb a n) ne a good job with the straw. CHORUS:
now and make what good use you can of him. Take him all around and
expose him to everyone for the informer that he is.
DICAEOPOLIS: It took a bit out of me, but I managed to do a good job
( H a nds the rope to the Theb a n)
THEBAN: (T a k es the rope f r om D i c a eopo l is but of f e rs i t to h is sl a ve)
Here, Isminias, take him and be careful how you handle him. ( N i c a r c h us
D i c a e o po l i s a nd
the cho rus sing a p a c k ing song in l ines 929-951 a s they do so.) DICAEOPOLIS:
a profit out of informing on informers would be a good thing. CHORUS: Tie him well, Dicky. Tie his prick well
wobble about and break on the way. Theb a n , N i c a r chus and Ismen i a s exi t . D i c a eopo l is goes inside h is house . A
s l a v e c om e s ou t
hous e . DICAEOPOLIS:
( T a ps a nd pu l l s
ph a l lus wh i ch, in r esponse ma k es a n odd sound)
sort of sound! SLAVE: Dicaeopolis! Dicky! Diiiickyyyyy!
DICAEOPOLIS: Yes? Who is it? ( C omes out) Yeah, what do you want? 25
SLAVE: Lamachus has asked me to ask you to sell him some Dicky birds
and a bit of
going to the festival of Wine Cups.
DICAEOPOLIS: Lamachus? Lamachus? Who is this Lamachus who wants
some of my eel?
SLAVE: You know Lamachus! My master! That fearful, bull-strong, shaker
of the shield upon which a fierce Gorgon is painted and wears three plumes
that beshadow his mighty shadow crest.
L ama chus c a n he a r h im)
anything, even if he gave me that shield of his. Let him and his plumes eat
( P i c k s up
h is wh ip a nd sh a k es i t a t the sl a ve)
e market inspectors again! enjoying ourselves with all sorts of delightful things, in he goes and does all
the harm he can, smashing and spilling everything and arguing and fighting
with everyone; and no matter how often I told him to sit down and to take
this lovely cup and enjoy the drink, he still went on and wildly burned down
my vine stakes and even more wildly spilled all our wine! D i c a eopo l is comes out and c a r e fu l ly, p roud ly, p l a c es a bundl e of f e a the rs
next to h is doo r . They a r e the fe a the rs of the ch i c k ens a nd a l l the othe r
b i r ds t h e
b u r ps , f a r t s , c h u c k l e s a n d g o e s b a c k i ns i d e .
Whereas, this man, Dicky, here, has his table covered with delicious
Oh Peace! Ohhhh! Stunning companion of Aphrodite! Beloved of the (St a r ts do ing so a s he intones : ) Oh,
O d e (971-999)
Wh i l e the cho rus spe a ks, a l l the membe rs of D i
a nd he lp b r ing a l l the me r ch and ise into the house , unt i l they a r e a l l inside .
The doo r shuts f i rmly beh ind them. Ag a in, no ises a r e he a rd wh i ch suggest a
good t ime in the k i t chen a nd e lsewhe r e in the house . Ohhh! If only, if only Eros would join us
somehow! just you and me together Even in a painting, like those which the artists draw with all those wreaths
e hee hee! CHORUS: (To the a ud i enc e) Did you see, Athenians? Did you all see how
wise and prudent this man is?
How with his own treaty he managed to buy all the things he needs for his
household and all the delicious things that are worthy of his table? So
al by anointing our bodies
Without bother or fuss, all good things come to him.
I shall never invite War into my house, nor will I sing with him the martial
songs of Harmodius the Tyrant-Killer. with olive oil. 26
E p i so d e 5 (1000-1142)
HERALD: Hear me, people! Let everyone, at the sound of the trumpet,
drink fast from his jug. He whose jug is the first to be empty, will, as did
our forefathers, win a wine skin the size of
stomach! DICAEOPOLIS: Yeah? Well, on your way, miseryany misery today, thanks! need DERKETES: (St r e t ches out h is cup to h im) Dear Dicaeopolis, darling H e r a l d l e a ve s.
DICAEOPOLIS: ( F rom wi th i n.) Did you hear that, boys and wives? Did
you all hear the proclamation? Move! Boil and roast and turn the meat DICAEOPOLIS: Why? What happened to you?
DERKETES: n! the skewers to stick into the Dicky birds! DICAEOPOLIS: How? A moment l a t e r D i c a eopo l is comes out , f lust e r ed but ha ppy wi th
a n t i c i p a t i on . DERKETES: The Boeotians invaded my village, Phylae. They ran off with
them. CHORUS: (To D i c a eopo l is, in the f i rst p a r t of a l i t t l e ch a nt, 1008-1017)
I envy your good sense but even more, I envy your joy! DICAEOPOLIS:
dressed in white. DICAEOPOLIS:
roasted Dicky birds! DERKETES: Well, shit is right! The oxen made me wealthy with their
manure! CHORUS: DICAEOPOLIS: So what is it you would possibly need then? DICAEOPOLIS: ( G oes to the window a nd shouts che f - l i k e comma nds a t
the househo ld) Stir the fire a bit! DERKETES:
my sight. Please, Dicky, if you care for poor Derketes from Phylae, just rub
a bit of your peace on my eyes, quick! CHORUS: (To the a ud i enc e ) Do you hear him? See what a refined cook he
is? See how well he knows the art of cooking?
E nt e r D e r k e t es, a f a r me r , d r essed in b r ight , we a l th-wh i t e c lothes. H e is
d r essed a s a b l ind begg a r , c a r rying a cup. H e looks ve ry sa d. DICAEOPOLIS:
medicine, like Dr. Pittalos!
DICAEOPOLIS: DERKETES: Hell, hell, hell, hell!
DICAEOPOLIS: Who on Earth is that? DERKETES: ( F rom h is c lo a k he t a k es out a l i t t l e r e ed) Please, Dicky, just
drop me a drop or two of your peace in this tiny little reed. CHORUS: Some poor, god-forsaken, misery-clogged man. DICAEOPOLIS: No, not even a droplet. Go cry elsewhere! 27
DERKETES: Oh, my plowing oxen! My poor, poor plowing oxen! screwing instead of going to war. E x i t D e r k e t e s. DICAEOPOLIS:
giving you any of my peace, not for a million drachs! ( H e not i c es the
B r idesma id.) CHORUS: (To D i c a eopo l is, in th e othe r ha l f of the i r l i t t l e ch a nt , 10371046 )
it with anyone else. D i c a eopo l is goes b a c k to h is window a nd shouts simi l a r ch e f - l i k e o rde rs to
t hos e w i t h i n
DICAEOPOLIS: Hey, you! Spread a bit of honey over the entrails and turn
the Dicky birds over!
CHORUS: (To the a ud i enc e) Hear him? His orders are as sweet as a song!
DICAEOPOLIS: And toss the eels!
CHORUS: (To D i c a eopo l is)
this smoke and all your shouts will also kill the neighbors.
DICAEOPOLIS: ( E ven mo r e pompously)
brown! ( G oe s inside to show them wh a t he me a ns) E nt e r a B est M a n a nd B r idesma id. H e h a s come f rom the wedd ing f e a st a nd
ng a p l a t t e r wi th food on i t a nd a sma l l bot t l e . BEST MAN: This here is the Bridesmaid and
for you from the bride. Hihihihihi!
DICAEOPOLIS: Well, come on, then, tell me! (She moves towa rds h im a nd
ma n a ges to wh ispe r coyly. D i c a eopo l is l a ughs a t he r messa ge a nd they a l l
l a ugh toge the r) Hahaha! Oh gods! What a funny thing! What a funny thing
me to help her keep the
home! Ohhohohoho! ( C a l l out
towa rds the house) Blondie! Bring here my peace bottle. This is the only
( B l ond i e
b r ings the pe a c e bot t l e a nd hands i t to D i c a eopo l is) Come, darling, bring
me your little bottle. ( D i c a eopo l is pou rs some wine into he r bot t l e) Now,
you know what to do? Tell the bride that when the order comes for the men (She nods.) Good! ( H a nds the pe a c e bot t l e to B lond i e) Right! Blondie, take
this back and bring me the goods for the festival. I must be off.
B lond i e t a k es the bot t l e a nd runs b a c k inside . B r idesma id and B est M a n
hop of f . E nt e r , unh a pp i ly ,
CHORUS: BEST MAN: Dicaeopolis! Hey, Dicky!
DICAEOPOLIS: ( F rom wi th i n) What? Who? ( C omes out) Where?
meat for you from his wedding dinner. (Both chuc k l e) 1071
HERALD A: Oh what tortures and pains! Worthy of Lamachus himself! DICAEOPOLIS: C omes down a nd inspe c ts the me a t)
very well, whoever he is! LAMACHUS: (Bomb a st i c a l ly wi th in) Who knocks upon the doors of these
war-blessed halls, where the shiny bronze of shields and spears outshine the
sun? BEST MAN: He asks, in return for this meat hihihihihi!- for you to put a
bit of your peace in this alabaster bottle, so that he can go on hihihihihihi!- HERALD A: The generals, sir, have given orders that you should take all
your troops and all your helmets and all your plumes and hurry to the snow, 28
Boeotian thieves are coming
to the Festival of the Cups to do their usual dirty work.
LAMACHUS: (By now he h a s opened the doo r . H is Ph a l lus is sa d.)
Damned Generals! High in number, low in use! How dreadful! How
terrible! Can I not at least have time for one festival? E xi t H e r a ld A .
DICAEOPOLIS: tune) Oh, Lamachus the LAMACHUS: ( F u r ious a t h is misfo r tune a s we l l a s a t D i c a eopo l is) You!
-cursed coward! You dare laugh at me?
mighty four-winged Geryon ) And is this the LAMACHUS: ( D ist r essed) Oioioioioio! What a terrible message the
messenger has brought me! LAMACHUS: ( E ven mo r e d ist r essed a nd g r e en wi th envy) Oioioioioioioi!
Luck has forsaken me! E xi t H e r a ld B
DICAEOPOLIS: (To L a ma chus) Well, what can I say? You chose the great
ugly Gorgon, I chose sweet, beautiful peace! Blondie! Shut the door behind
you and prepare the platter for the dinner.
They both go into the i r r espe c t ive houses but both c an be se en th rough the
LAMACHUS: Slave, bring my army sack!
DICAEOPOLIS: Slave, bring me my food platter!
LAMACHUS: Some salt with oregano and onions!
DICAEOPOLIS: Fish for me, Blondie. I hate onions!
LAMACHUS: Some of the anchovies. The ones cooked in fig leaves. DICAEOPOLIS: Oioioioioi! What message will this messenger will bring
HERALD B: Dicaeopolis! (T r i es to c a t ch h is b r e a th)
DICAEOPOLIS: (I mp a t i ent) Yes? What is it?
HERALD B: (T a k e s a de ep b r e a th now and r a t t l es of f th is long l ist of
good i es in such a wa y tha t i t hu r ts L am
H e r a ld tu rns oc c a sion a l ly to L a ma chus. D i c a eopo l is, of cou rse , is e cst a t i c . )
Quick, grab your food platter and your cup and run to the dinner. The priest
hours to begin the orgy I mean the festivities. Everything is ready.
Couches, tables, mattresses, cushions, garlands, perfumes, sweets of all
sorts, whores galore, cakes, pastry bits and pieces, sesame rolls, little
ers, those beautiful lovers of DICAEOPOLIS: Some nice tripe in my fig leaves, Blondie
LAMACHUS: Bring me my plumes!
DICAEOPOLIS: Bring me the pigeons and the Dicky birds!
LAMACHUS: ( C he c k ing i t a nd p roud ly d isp l a ying i t to the a ud i enc e) This
plume is beautiful. Ostrich! So white!
DICAEOPOLIS: (S imi l a r ly d isp l a ying i t to the a ud i enc e) Ohhhh! This
Dicky bird is so scrumptious, so brown!
LAMACHUS: (Ang ry a t D i c a eopo l is) Will you stop mocking my war stuff, 29
LAMACHUS: My round shield, the one adorned with the Gorgon.
DICAEOPOLIS: Man, you wanna stop ogling my Dicky bird?
LAMACHUS: (B a c k to h is sl a ve) Bring me the case for the three plumes. 1125
DICAEOPOLIS: And my pie 1110
DICAEOPOLIS: Bring me the platter with the hare. LAMACHUS: (I nd i c a t ing the a ud i enc e)
people? LAMACHUS: ( E xa min ing the p lumes) Damn! The hair-worms have eaten
these plumes! DICAEOPOLIS: ( D i sp l a ying i t to the a ud i enc e)
sweet cheese pie for the people? DICAEOPOLIS: Shall I eat this hare before dinner? LAMACHUS: Boy, put a bit of oil on this shield. I can see a man in it, one
about to be prosecuted for cowardice. LAMACHUS: (Ang r i e r , a t D i c a eopo l is) Man, would you stop talking to
here! (To B lond i e) Would you like to bet on what is nicer, locusts or Dicky
LAMACHUS: ( To the a ud i enc e) Look how the man insults me!
DICAEOPOLIS: (To the a ud i enc e) Yep, he prefers the locusts, all right!
LAMACHUS: Take down my spear and bring it to me, boy!
DICAEOPOLIS: Boy, pull the sausages out of the fire and bring them to
LAMACHUS: Come, slave, hold this spear for me so that I can pull it out
DICAEOPOLIS: (I nd i c a t ing his ph a l lus) And you, little piglet, hold tight
LAMACHUS: Boy, bring the braces for my shield.
DICAEOPOLIS: the one adorned with cheese.
bad joke for the 1130
DICAEOPOLIS: You pour the honey now
Lamachus the Gorgonhead!
LAMACHUS: Boy, bring me my battle-proof breast plate!
DICAEOPOLIS: Boy, my battle-proof wine cup!
LAMACHUS: (Puts h is b r e a st p l a t e on a nd sma c ks a t i t wi th p r ide) Ah,
yes! Armed with this,
DICAEOPOLIS: (B r a nd ish ing the cup)
right amongst my drinking mates!
LAMACHUS: Secure the mats on the shield.
DICAEOPOLIS: Secure the food into the basket.
snowing. Brrrr! This is wintry work! in front of a delicious
cuttlefish, all nicely salted, deliciously cooked, just served sizzling hot! DICAEOPOLIS: Boy, pick up
orgy! L ama chus a nd h is sl a ve exi t .
D i c a eopo l is a nd B lond i e
out of the i r r espe c t ive houses. L ama chus is in fu l l a rmo r a nd h is sl a ve ,
lo a ded wi th mi l i t a ry equ ipment , is t r emb l ing wi th f e a r a nd t r ep id a t ion. The
B l ond i e
is c a r rying a b a sk e t of good i es fo r the f est iva l . In cont r a st to L ama chus and
h i s s l a v e , D i c a e o po l i s a nd h i s r e t i nu e l oo k s v e r y h a ppy . B o t h s i d e s g l a n c e
a t e a ch othe r wi th a pp rop r i a t e exp r essions of sco rn, be fo r e they exi t f rom
d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i on s . Still with me, Antimachus? Your eyes are devouring this beautiful cuttle fish
and your mouth as usual dripping spit everywhere. Well, just as your
hand moves towards it, what happens?
A dog snatches it from under your nose and runs off with it! May the gods
One which takes place at night.
and sweaty and utterly bothered. O d e (1143-1173)
gongs you one on the head.
CHORUS: Go forth, young men, each on a very different path to the other!
One path ends with drinks and garlands,
the other with ice and snow and outpost guard duty.
The first though, ah, the first! you want a
No, you grab a turd a freshly made one, of course! As for Antimachus, that creep, that saliva drip, that so-called author of lyric
poems you know the one! S The one who wrote up a petition to stop the chorus sponsors from paying
May Zeus murder you! The stingy bum left me me! A poor chorus master,
to go home after the stunning show I put on a couple of years ago, he made
me go home starving.
-the- Still with me, Antimachus? 31
SLAVE: Hey, servants of Lamachus! Quick, get some water! Get some hot
water, quick. Heat some water in a pot! (A se rva nt comes out of the house)
Quick! Get some cloth and waxed wool and lint and bandages and stuff, for
his ankle. (The se rva nt runs of f inside a nd sl a ve now tu rns to the a ud i enc e)
The master hurt himself jumping over a ditch. He hit a stake and dislocated
and twisted his ankle, broke his head by some falling stone and the Gorgon
shot off right out of his shield! Swoosh! Ah, the poor man! How his
beautiful plumes rolled on the ground. He got so angry at tha t, he let out
such a sad, sad lamentation! He said, (T a k es up a t r a g i c postu r e)
sees a band of thieves, so he gets up out of the ditch and chases the thieves
and all the other runaways with his spear. Right up their bum his spear was!
Ah, here he is now! e i the r side . Bod i es a nd ph a l luses a r e in conc e r t a s to the st a t e of the i r
gene r a l d isposi t ion. LAMACHUS: ( E nvious) Oioioioioioioiiiiii! What suffering, what bitter
pain these fiery wounds give me! Oioioioioiiii!
DICAEOPOLIS: Ohohoho! Well, hello, Sir Lamachus, Sir Knight of the
LAMACHUS: ( Mo r e envious) Oioioioioioiiiii! Achhhh!
DICAEOPOLIS: (To one of the g i r ls) Will you kiss me? Erotically? (She
does a nd a s she does, he r h a nd l e ts go of h is ph a l lus.)
LAMACHUS: ( G r e en wi th envy) Oioioioioioiioiii! Achhhhh!
DICAEOPOLIS: (A f t e r the k iss, tu rns to the othe r g i r l) Will you bite me?
Erotically? (She does so and a lso l e ts he r h a nd of f h is ph a l lus, wh i ch, now
unp ropped, d rops.)
LAMACHUS: ( G r e ene r wi th envy) Oioioiiii! How hard I paid for that
battle! E xo dos : 1190-1234
LAMACHUS: Oioioioioioiiiiiii! What awful pains! Achhhh! Dreadful DICAEOPOLIS: Has everyone paid their dues for the orgy?
LAMACHUS: ( D isgust ed) Oh Apollo, Apollo, Apollo!
going to see me like this and laugh at me and at my woes! Oioioioioioioiiiii! , of
d runk , ve ry h appy and wi th a g a r l a nd somewhe r e a round the vi c in i ty of the 1198
DICAEOPOLIS: Oioioioioiiiiii! What delightful tits! Firm like quinces!
Mmmmmm! (To one of them) Oh, sweet, sweet, sweetie porky pie, give me
prize for winning the drinking contest! Hick! I was the first to empty my
cup, you know! Hick! DICAEOPOLIS: (I nd i c a t ing his ph a l lus)
LAMACHUS: ( E ven mo r e d isgust ed) Take me, boy, take me by the arms!
Friends hold me!
DICAEOPOLIS: (Ag a in ind i c a t ing h is pha l lus) Me, too, girls, grab my
prick from the middle and hold it! Pleeeeeease! (They do. D ign i ty is
r e s t o r e d !)
LAMACHUS: (se e k ing symp a thy)
sight is fading. he stone hit me and my 32
DICAEOPOLIS: Me too! I wanna go to bed. (I nd i c a t ing h is ph a l lus) Look,
LAMACHUS: (Se e k ing mo r e symp a thy) Quick, men! Take me to Dr.
DICAEOPOLIS: And me, take me to the judges! (About to wa l k but
stumb l es) Oooops, someone else do the driving. Where is the chief? I
LAMACHUS: ( D espe r a t e ly se e k ing symp a thy) The sharp spear ran itself
right through my bones!
DICAEOPOLIS: (Sudden ly d iscove rs h is cup) Ohhhh! Look at my poor
empty cup! Hurray for me! Hurray for my victory! ( To the g i r ls, the
a ud i enc e a nd the cho rus) Come on, shout with me, hurray! (They a l l do so)
CHORUS: Well, hurray!
Hurray for your brilliant victory, Dicaeopolis!
Hurray for our old Dicky!
DICAEOPOLIS: Hee hee hee! Once again, I drained my brimming cup, a
cup full of unmixed wine! One glug! One solitary glug! (Shows the empty
cup a round) See? My cup is empty!
Go and get your prize, Dicky boy!
DICAEOPOLIS: (To the g i r ls a s he he ads towa rds the ex i t to go a nd c l a im
h is p r ize ) Come with me, girls,
CHORUS: ( F o l lowing h im towa rds the ex i t)
yours, Dicky Boy! ou, boy! E xi t a l l , sing ing and d a nc ing . ...
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This note was uploaded on 02/09/2012 for the course CLST 3040 taught by Professor Major during the Fall '09 term at LSU.
- Fall '09