Aelian, Historical Miscellany

LCL 486: 342-343

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1. Ἀσπασία ἡ Ἑρμοτίμου θυγάτηρ ἡ Φωκαῒς ἐτράφη [μὲν]1 ἐν ὀρφανίᾳ, τῆς μητρὸς αὐτῆς ἀποθανούσης ἐν ὠδῖσιν. ἐκ δὴ τούτων ἐν πενίᾳ μὲν ἐτράφη ἡ Ἀσπασία, σωφρόνως μέντοι καὶ ἐγκρατῶς.2 ὄνειρος δὲ αὐτῇ συνεχῶς ἐπεφοίτα καὶ ἐμαντεύετο αὐτῇ χρηστόν,3 τὴν μέλλουσαν αὐτῆς τύχην ὑπαινιττόμενος, ὅτι καλῷ καὶ ἀγαθῷ συνέσται ἀνδρί. παῖς δ᾿ ἔτι οὖσα, γίνεται αὐτῇ κατὰ τοῦ προσώπου φῦμα ὑπ᾿ αὐτὸ τὸ γένειον καὶ ἦν ἰδεῖν μοχθηρὸν καὶ ἐλύπει τόν τε πατέρα καὶ τὴν παῖδα. δείκνυσιν οὖν αὐτὴν ὁ πατὴρ ἰατρῷ· ὁ δὲ ὑπέσχετο ἰάσεσθαι,4 εἰ λάβοι τρεῖς στατῆρας. ὁ δὲ ἔφατο μὴ ἔχειν, ὁ δὲ ἰατρὸς μηδὲ αὐτὸς εὐπορεῖν φαρμάκου φησί. καὶ ἠνιᾶτο ὥσπερ εἰκὸς ἐπὶ τούτοις ἡ Ἀσπασία καὶ ἀπελθοῦσα ἔξω ἔκλαεν· ἔχουσα <δ᾿>5 ἐν τοῖς γόνασι κάτοπτρον καὶ ὁρῶσα ἑαυτὴν ἐν αὐτῷ σφόδρα ἤλγει. ἀδείπνῳ δὲ οὔσῃ ὑπὸ τῆς ἀνίας ἀφίκετό οἱ εὖ μάλα εὔκαιρος ὕπνος, καὶ ἅμα τῷ ὕπνῳ [ἡ]6 περιστερὰ παραγίνεται, καὶ γενομένη γυνὴ

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Book 12

Book Twelve

1. Aspasia of Phocaea, the daughter of Hermotimus, was brought up as an orphan, as her mother died in childbirth. After that Aspasia was brought up in poverty, but learning modesty and self-control. She regularly had a dream which prophesied good fortune for her, hinting at her future destiny, that she would live with a handsome and noble man. While she was still a child a growth developed right under the chin; it was unpleasant to look at and caused distress both to father and daughter. Her father took her to a doctor, who promised to cure her if he received three staters.1 The father said he did not have the money, and the doctor said he did not have much of the medicine. Aspasia was naturally pained by this and went out in tears; putting a mirror on her lap and looking at herself in it she was very upset. In her distress she ate no dinner, and sleep came over her at a very timely moment. During her sleep a dove arrived,2 which turned into a

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.aelian-historical_miscellany.1997