Nekroruktas

200px-Vasnetsov_Grave_digger
© Viktor Vasnetsov

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

Ὡς δὲ εἶδεν ἡ Χαριτὼ τηλικαῦτα σημεῖα, ἀναβοᾷ καὶ διαρρήξασα ἑαυτῆς τά τε ἐνδύματα καὶ τὸ ἱμάτιον ἀπό τε τῆς κεφαλῆς ῥίψασα τὸν κεκρύφαλον πεσοῦσά τε εἰς τὴν γῆν καὶ περιχυθεῖσα τοῖς γνωρίσμασιν ἐξ ἀρχῆς ἐποίει τὸ πένθος. θεωρῶν δὲ ὁ ξένος τὸ γινόμενον καὶ πάντας ὄντας ὑπερπαθεῖς καὶ θρηνοῦντας, ὡσανεὶ νῦν μέλλοντας κατορύττειν τὴν ἄνθρωπον, συνεχεῖτο καὶ παρεκάλει δεόμενος παύσασθαι, ἐπαγγελλόμενος, ἐὰν παραγένηται, δείξειν αὐτήν. ἡ δὲ πεισθεῖσα καὶ ἐντειλαμένη αὐτῷ φροντίσαι μὴ παρέργως τῶν ἐπηγγελμένων ἀπελύθη πρὸς αὑτήν. νυκτὸς δέ ἐπιγενομένης καὶ τῆς ὥρας οὔσης, καθ’ ἣν ἡ Φιλίννιον εἰώθει παραγίνεσθαι πρός αὑτόν, οἱ μὲν προσετήρουν εἰδῆσαι θέλοντες τήν ἄφιξιν, ἡ δὲ ἧκεν. εἰσελθούσης δέ κατὰ τὸν εἰθισμένον καιρόν καί καθεζομένης ἐπὶ τήν κλίνην, ούδέν προσποιηθεὶς ὁ Μαχάτης, ἐξετάσαι δὲ τὸ πρᾶγμα βουλόμενος, τό πλέον ού πιστεύων, εἰ νεκρᾷ πλησιάζοι, οὕτως ἐπιμελῶς παραγιγνομένης κατὰ τὸν αὑτὸν καιρόν, ἔτι δέ δειπνούσης μετ’ αὑτοῦ καὶ συμπινούσης, ἀπίστως εἶχεν οἷς ἐκεῖνοι προήγγειλαν, ᾤετο δὲ νεκρορύκτας τινάς διωρυχέναι τόν τάφον καί πεπρακέναι τὰ ἱμάτια καί τά χρυσία τῷ πατρὶ τῆς ἀνθρώπου. βουλόμενος οὖν τήν ἀκρίβειαν εἰδῆσαι πέμπει τοὺς παῖδας λάθρᾳ καλοῦντας αὐτούς. ταχέως δέ παραγενομένων τοῦ τε Δημοστράτου καί τῆς Χαριτοῦς ἰδόντων τε αὐτήν καί γενομένων τὸ μέν πρῶτον ἀφώνων τε καὶ ἐκπλαγῶν διὰ τό παράδοξον τῆς ὄψεως, ὕστερον δέ ἀναβοησάντων μέγα καὶ περιπεσόντων τῇ θυγατρί, τότε ἡ Φιλίννιον τοσαῦτ’ εἶπεν αὑτοῖς· “ὧ μῆτερ καί πάτερ, ὡς ἀδίκως ἐφθονήσατέ μοι μετὰ τοῦ ξένου ἐπὶ τρεῖς ἡμέρας γενέσθαι ἐν τῇ πατρῴᾳ οἰκίᾳ λυποῦσαν ούδέν. τοιγαροῦν ὑμεῖς μὲν πενθήσετε ἐξ ἀρχῆς διὰ τήν πολυπραγμοσύνην, ἐγὼ δέ ἄπειμι πάλιν εἰς τὸν διατεταγμένον τόπον· ού γάρ ἄνευ θείας βουλήσεως ἦλθον εἰς ταῦτα.” τοσαῦτα εἰποῦσα παραχρῆμα ἐγένετο νεκρά, ἐξετέτατό τε ἐπὶ τῆς κλίνης ἐμφανὲς τὸ σῶμα. τῆς δέ μητρὸς περιχυθείσης καὶ τοῦ πατρὸς περὶ αὐτὴν καί θορύβου πολλοῦ καί θρήνου κατὰ τήν οἰκίαν γενομένου διά τό πάθος, ὡς ἀνηκέστου γεγονότος συμπτώματος ἅμα τε ἀπίστου θεάματος, ταχέως ἐγένετο διὰ πόλεως τὸ πρᾶγμα περιβόητον καί μοι προσηγγέλθη. τὴν μέν οὖν νύκτα έκείνην διακατέσχον ἐγὼ τοὺς ὄχλους ἀθροιζομένους ἐπὶ τὴν οἰκίαν, εὑλαβηθεὶς μή τις εἴη νεωτερισμὸς διαδεδομένης τοιαύτης φήμης.
(Phlegon, Peri thaumasiōn 1.8-13)

When Charito saw this evidence she uttered a cry, tore her clothes, cast her headdress from her head and fell to the ground, throwing herself upon the tokens and beginning her grief anew. As the guest observed what was happening, how all were grieving and wailing as if they were about to lay the girl into her grave, he became upset and called upon them to stop, promising to show them the girl if she came again. Charito accepted this and bade him carefully keep his promise to her. Night came on and now it was the hour when Philinnion was accustomed to come to him. The household kept watch, wanting to know of her arrival. She entered at the usual time and sat down on the bed. Machates pretended that nothing was wrong, since he wished to investigate the whole incredible matter to find out if the girl he was consorting with, who took care to come to him at the same hour, was actually dead. As she ate and drank with him, he simply could not believe what the others had told him, and he supposed that some grave-robbers had dug into the tomb and sold the clothes and the gold to her father. But in his wish to learn exactly what the case was, he secretly sent his slaves to summon Demostratos and Charito. They came quickly. When they first saw her they were speechless and panic-stricken by the amazing sight, bur after that they cried aloud and embraced their daughter. Then Philinnion said to them: ‘Mother and father, how unfairly you have grudged my being with the guest for three days in my father’s house, since I have caused no one any pain. For this reason, on account of your meddling, you shall grieve all over again, and I shall return ro the place appointed for me. For it was not without divine will that I came here.’ Immediately upon speaking these words she was dead, and her body lay stretched out visibly on the bed. Her father and mother threw themselves upon her, and there was much confusion and wailing in the house because of the calamity. The misfortune was unbearable and the sight incredible. The event was quickly heard through the city and was reported to me. Accordingly during the night I kept in check the crowds that gathered at the house, since, with news like this going from mouth to mouth, I wanted to make sure there would be no trouble. (tr. William Hansen)

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