Chariton, Callirhoe

LCL 481: 280-281

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1. Ἐπεὶ δὲ ἔμελλε βασιλεὺς τῇ ὑστεραίᾳ δικάζειν πότερον Χαιρέου γυναῖκα Καλλιρόην εἶναι δεῖ ἢ Διονυσίου, μετέωρος ἦν πᾶσα Βαβυλών, καὶ ἐν οἰκίαις τε πρὸς ἀλλήλους καὶ ἐν τοῖς στενωποῖς οἱ ἀπαντῶντες ἔλεγον “αὔριον τῆς Καλλιρόης οἱ γάμοι. τίς εὐτυχέστερος 2ἄρα;” διέσχιστο δὲ ἡ πόλις, καὶ οἱ μὲν Χαιρέᾳ σπεύδοντες ἔλεγον “πρῶτος ἦν ἀνήρ, παρθένον ἔγημεν ἐρῶσαν ἐρῶν· πατὴρ ἐξέδωκεν αὐτῷ, πατρὶς ἔθαψε· τοὺς γάμους οὐκ ἀπέλιπεν· οὐκ ἀπελείφθη. Διονύσιος δὲ ἠγόρασεν, οὐκ ἔγημεν. λῃσταὶ <μὲν> 3ἐπώλησαν· οὐκ ἐξὸν δὲ τὴν ἐλευθέραν ἀγοράσαι.” οἱ δὲ Διονυσίῳ σπεύδοντες ἀντέλεγον πάλιν “ἐξήγαγε πειρατηρίου τὴν μέλλουσαν φονεύεσθαι· τάλαντον ἔδωκεν ὑπὲρ τῆς σωτηρίας αὐτῆς· πρῶτον ἔσωσεν, εἶτα ἔγημε· Χαιρέας δὲ γήμας ἀπέκτεινε· μνημονεύειν ὀφείλει Καλλιρόη τοῦ τάφου· μέγιστον δὲ Διονυσίῳ πρόσεστιν εἰς τὸ νικᾶν ὅτι καὶ τέκνον ἔχουσι κοινόν.” 4ταῦτα μὲν οὖν οἱ ἄνδρες· αἱ δὲ γυναῖκες οὐκ ἐρρητόρευον μόνον, ἀλλὰ καὶ συνεβούλευον ὡς παρούσῃ Καλλιρόῃ “μὴ παρῇς τὸν παρθένιον· ἑλοῦ τὸν πρῶτον


Book 6.1

Book 6

1. When, on the following day, the king was about to rule whether Callirhoe should be the wife of Chaereas or of Dionysius, all Babylon was at fever pitch: people at home and meeting each other in the streets were saying, “Tomorrow is Callirhoe’s wedding. Who will be the lucky man?” The city was divided, and the supporters of Chaereas argued, “He was her first husband; she was a virgin when he married her, and each loved the other. Her father gave her to him; her country buried her. He did not desert his bride; he was not deserted by her. Dionysius bought her; he did not marry her. Pirates put her up for sale; but it is not permissible to buy a freeborn woman.” The supporters of Dionysius, on the other hand, retorted, “He rescued her from a pirate band when she was about to be killed; he paid a talent to save her. First he saved her, then he married her; but Chaereas married her and then killed her. Callirhoe ought to remember her tomb. But the chief point favoring Dionysius’ victory is that they have a child in common.” Such were the arguments of the men. But the women not only made speeches, but actually offered advice to Callirhoe as though she were listening. “Do not pass over your maiden love; take the man who loved

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.chariton-callirhoe.1995