Palaiōmen

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This is part 2 of 3. Part 1 is here. Part 3 is here.

Κἀπειδὴ ἀφίκετό ποτε ὁ Ἵππαρχος, λουσάμενοι ἐδειπνοῦμεν καὶ πότος ἦν συχνὸς ἡμῶν ὁμιλούντων· εἶτα τοῦ ὕπνου καταψευσάμενος ἀνίσταμαι καὶ ἔργῳ ἀπῄειν ἔνθα ᾤκουν. πάντα δὲ τὰ ἔνδον εὖ παρεσκεύαστο· τῷ μὲν παιδὶ ἔξω ὑπέστρωτο, τράπεζα δὲ τῇ κλίνῃ παρειστήκει ποτήριον ἔχουσα· καὶ οἶνος αὐτοῦ παρέκειτο καὶ ὕδωρ ἕτοιμον καὶ ψυχρὸν καὶ θερμόν. πᾶσα δὲ ἦν αὕτη τῆς Παλαίστρας παρασκευή. τῶν δὲ στρωμάτων ῥόδα πολλὰ κατεπέπαστο, τὰ μὲν οὕτω γυμνὰ καθ’ αὑτά, τὰ δὲ λελυμένα, τὰ δὲ στεφάνοις συμπεπλεγμένα. κἀγὼ τὸ συμπόσιον εὑρὼν ἕτοιμον ἔμενον τὸν συμπότην. ἡ δὲ ἐπειδὴ κατέκλινε τὴν δέσποιναν, σπουδῇ παρ’ ἐμὲ ἧκε, καὶ ἦν εὐφροσύνη τὸν οἶνον ἡμῶν καὶ τὰ φιλήματα προπινόντων ἀλλήλοις. ὡς δὲ τῷ ποτῷ παρεσκευάσαμεν ἑαυτοὺς εὖ πρὸς τὴν νύκτα, λέγει πρός με ἡ Παλαίστρα· “τοῦτο μὲν πάντως δεῖ σε μνημονεύειν, ὦ νεανίσκε, ὅτι εἰς Παλαίστραν ἐμπέπτωκας, καὶ χρή σε νῦν ἐπιδεῖξαι εἰ γέγονας ἐν τοῖς ἐφήβοις γοργὸς καὶ παλαίσματα πολλὰ ἔμαθές ποτε.”—”ἀλλ᾽ οὐκ ἂν ἴδοις φεύγοντά με τὸν ἔλεγχον τοῦτον· ὥστε ἀπόδυσαι, καὶ ἤδη παλαίωμεν.” ἡ δέ “οὕτως” ἔφη “ὡς ἐγὼ θέλω, παράσχου μοι τὴν ἐπίδειξιν· ἐγὼ μὲν νόμῳ διδασκάλου καὶ ἐπιστάτου τὰ ὀνόματα τῶν παλαισμάτων ὧν ἐθέλω εὑροῦσα ἐρῶ, σὺ δὲ ἕτοιμος γίνου ἐς τὸ ὑπακούειν καὶ ποιεῖν πᾶν τὸ κελευόμενον.”—”ἀλλ’ ἐπίταττε” ἔφην “καὶ σκόπει ὅπως εὐχερῶς καὶ ὑγρῶς τὰ παλαίσματα καὶ εὐτόνως ἔσται.” ἡ δὲ ἀποδυσαμένη τὴν ἐσθῆτα καὶ στᾶσα ὅλη γυμνὴ ἔνθεν ἤρξατο ἐπιτάττειν, “ὦ μειράκιον, ἔκδυσαι καὶ ἀλειψάμενος ἔνθεν ἐκ τοῦ μύρου συμπλέκου τῷ ἀνταγωνιστῇ· δύο μηρῶν σπάσας κλῖνον ὑπτίαν, ἔπειτα  νώτερος ὑποβάλων διὰ μηρῶν καὶ διαστείλας αἰώρει καὶ τεῖνε ἄνω τὰ σκέλη, καὶ χαλάσας καὶ στήσας κολλῶ αὐτῷ καὶ παρεισελθὼν βάλε καὶ πρώσας νύσσε ἤδη πανταχοῦ ἕως πονέσῃ, καὶ ἡ ὀσφὺς ἰσχυέτω, εἶτα ἐξελκύσας κατὰ πλάτος διὰ βουβῶνος δῆξον, καὶ πάλιν συνώθει εἰς τὸν τοῖχον, εἶτα τύπτε· ἐπειδὰν δὲ χάλασμα ἴδῃς, τότ’ ἤδη ἐπιβὰς ἅμμα κατ’ ἰξύος δήσας σύνεχε, καὶ πειρῶ μὴ σπεύδειν, ἀλλ’ ὀλίγον διακαρτερήσας σύντρεχε. ἤδη ἀπολέλυσαι.”
(Lucian, Loukios ē Onos 7-9)

When Hipparchus eventually arrived, we washed and had dinner, drinking a great deal as we talked. Then I pretended I was sleepy, got up and did in fact go off to my room. Everything inside the room had been beautifully prepared. Bedding had been made up for my servant outside, while beside my bed was a table with a cup. There was wine there, and hot and cold water had been left ready; this was all the work of Palaestra. Over the bedclothes roses had been strewn in profusion, some of them in their natural state, some plucked apart, and others plaited into garlands. Finding the room prepared for the celebrations, I awaited my companion. Once she had seen her mistress to bed, she hurried to my room, and we made merry as we offered each other toasts and kisses. When we had fortified ourselves with wine for the night ahead. Palaestra said to me, “Young fellow, you must remember that it’s Palaestra with whom you’ve come to grips, and you must now show whether you’ve become a lad of mettle and have learnt many a wrestling hold.”—”Indeed you won’t see me shirking this trial of strength. Strip then, and let’s start our wrestling now.”—”You must follow my wishes as you demonstrate your prowess. I shall be like a trainer and supervisor, thinking up and calling out the names of the holds I wish, and you must be ready to obey and carry out all your orders.”—”Well give your orders,” said I, “and see how readily, how nimbly and how vigorously I shall display my holds.” She stripped off her clothing and, standing completely naked, began her instructions there and then. “Strip off, my lad; rub on some of that ointment from over there, and grapple with your adversary. Grab me by both thighs and put me on my back. Next get on top of me, slip in through my thighs and open me up, keeping your legs poised above me and stretched out. Then drop them into position, keeping glued to your target. Go right into the assault, and push forward everywhere now with a sharp attack till your opponent is worn out, and let your weapon show its strength. Then withdraw, attack on a broad front and stab your foe through the groin. Push forward again to the wall and then strike. When you notice that the resistance is weakening, that’s the very time to lock yourself in close combat and grip your opponent by the waist. Try not to hurry, but be patient for a little and match your pace to mine. Now you can fall out from class.” (tr. Matthew D. Macleod)

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