Aug. 14th, 2012

hawkwing_lb: (Ned virtue)
I went for a walk from Plataia Viktoria up to Omonia, and from Omonia on to Monastiraki. On the way I passed a "Fantasy Shop," with Game of Thrones trading cards in the window and advertising for Magic the Gathering Friday night tournaments and Warhammer 40K gaming sessions.

Geekdom is international, and so is the curiously off-putting subliminal chauvinism in the posters. (Just once, I would like woman not to equal afterthought in the advertising.)

Anyway, on my way down to Plaka, I decided to walk through Athens' covered meat market...

It's an antechamber of hell.

Okay, I exaggerate. So I'm not that squeamish. But it's about 100m long, and the space between the meat displays is three people wide. The butchers aren't behind the meat displays, but in front, hacking off cuts with cleavers the size of my head. THUNK THUNK THUNK. There are chips of bone and bits of meatflesh on the cobbles, and something flew free from a THUNK twice on my way down and a meatfleck landed on my face. There were skinned lambs' heads with the eyeballs still attached, and a lamb's skin with a butcher still taking out the legs. Halves of sheep's carcases hanging suspending on racks, the bones thinly sheathed in fat and flesh, the ribs white where a bit had been sawn off. A pair of flies buzzing over a heaped tray of fresh mince. The smell of liver - liver itself, glistening darkly beside kidneys on the metal trays - and meat and old blood didn't exactly turn my stomach - it was realising that chips of bone and meatflesh had stuck to the bottom of my shoe that did that.

Yeah, I'm not about to turn vegetarian. But I think I prefer my butchers' filled with less THUNKing. And fewer flying flecks. And with more room to avoid the men wielding their knives.

I'm too young to remember if there were ever meat markets like this in Dublin. But in conclusion: will never make an industrial butcher, me.
hawkwing_lb: (Default)
Section 5:

ἔτι δὲ καὶ τὰ ἐκ τῶν ἄλλων ἱερῶν προσετίθει χρήματα οὐκ ὀλίγα, οἷς χρήσεσθαι αὐτούς, καὶ ἢν πάνυ ἐξείργωνται πάντων, καὶ αὐτῆς τῆς θεοῦ τοῖς περικειμένοις χρυσίοις: ἀπέφαινε δ᾽ ἔχον τὸ ἄγαλμα τεσσαράκοντα τάλαντα σταθμὸν χρυσίου ἀπέφθου, καὶ περιαιρετὸν εἶναι ἅπαν. χρησαμένους τε ἐπὶ σωτηρίᾳ ἔφη χρῆναι μὴ ἐλάσσω ἀντικαταστῆσαι πάλιν.

And still he added the things from the other sacred places, no small property, with which they could furnish themselves, and if they should be altogether constrained in all matters, also [they could furnish themselves] with the golden adornments of the goddess herself: for the image showed forth having forty talents' weight of refined gold, and the whole [able] to be taken off. Having furnished themselves with it, he said, upon their deliverance, it would be necessary to restore no less [to the goddess].

Section 6:

χρήμασι μὲν οὖν οὕτως ἐθάρσυνεν αὐτούς, ὁπλίτας δὲ τρισχιλίους καὶ μυρίους εἶναι ἄνευ τῶν ἐν τοῖς φρουρίοις καὶ τῶν παρ᾽ ἔπαλξιν ἑξακισχιλίων καὶ μυρίων.

In money therefore in this way they were of good cheer for themselves, and they had thirteen thousand hoplites without those in the forts and the ones along the defences, sixteen thousand.

Section 7:

τοσοῦτοι γὰρ ἐφύλασσον τὸ πρῶτον ὁπότε οἱ πολέμιοι ἐσβάλοιεν, ἀπό τε τῶν πρεσβυτάτων καὶ τῶν νεωτάτων, καὶ μετοίκων ὅσοι ὁπλῖται ἦσαν. τοῦ τε γὰρ Φαληρικοῦ τείχους στάδιοι ἦσαν πέντε καὶ τριάκοντα πρὸς τὸν κύκλον τοῦ ἄστεως, καὶ αὐτοῦ τοῦ κύκλου τὸ φυλασσόμενον τρεῖς καὶ τεσσαράκοντα (ἔστι δὲ αὐτοῦ ὃ καὶ ἀφύλακτον ἦν, τὸ μεταξὺ τοῦ τε μακροῦ καὶ τοῦ Φαληρικοῦ), τὰ δὲ μακρὰ τείχη πρὸς τὸν Πειραιᾶ τεσσαράκοντα σταδίων, ὧν τὸ ἔξωθεν ἐτηρεῖτο: καὶ τοῦ Πειραιῶς ξὺν Μουνιχίᾳ ἑξήκοντα μὲν σταδίων ὁ ἅπας περίβολος, τὸ δ᾽ ἐν φυλακῇ ὂν ἥμισυ τούτου.

For so great a number were the first on guard lest the enemy should invade, and they were from the oldest and the youngest and as many of the metics as had hoplite gear. For the Phaleric wall ran for five stades and thirty towards the ring of the city, and the watch-standing of the ring three and forty [stades] (it was this one of which half was also unguarded, the stretch in between the Long and the Phaleric, and the Long Walls towards the Peiraias were forty stades, which were watched from without: and of the Peiraias together with Mounichia the whole circuit was sixty stades, and half of this was guarded.

Section 8:

ἱππέας δὲ ἀπέφαινε διακοσίους καὶ χιλίους ξὺν ἱπποτοξόταις, ἑξακοσίους δὲ καὶ χιλίους τοξότας, καὶ τριήρεις τὰς πλωίμους τριακοσίας.

And the horsemen were twelve hundred, together with the mounted horse-archers, sixteen hundred bowmen, and three hundred triremes fit for sailing.

Section 9:

ταῦτα γὰρ ὑπῆρχεν Ἀθηναίοις καὶ οὐκ ἐλάσσω ἕκαστα τούτων, ὅτε ἡ ἐσβολὴ τὸ πρῶτον ἔμελλε Πελοποννησίων ἔσεσθαι καὶ ἐς τὸν πόλεμον καθίσταντο. ἔλεγε δὲ καὶ ἄλλα οἷάπερ εἰώθει Περικλῆς ἐς ἀπόδειξιν τοῦ περιέσεσθαι τῷ πολέμῳ.

For these things were ready for the Athenians, and not less than each of these things, when the first incursion of the Peleponnesians was about to take place, and they were set down into battle. Perikles said other things of this kind, as was his wont, in demonstration of their superiority in war.


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