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quivers curiously adorned, feathered arrows, and bows of polished horn, tipped at either end with gold.
From these gorgeous and costly commodities the reader, we fear, will be reluctant to accompany us into the kitchen, where we must pick our way among kneading-troughs, pots and pans, Delphian cutlery and honey-jars. But as without these the warriors, as Homer himself acknowledges, could make but little use of their weapons, it is absolutely necessary we should inquire into their cooking conveniences. To commence, however, we must allow 3 Clearchos of Soli, to enumerate a few of the articles found among the furniture of this important part of the house. There was, first, says he, a three-legged table, then a chytra, or earthen pot, which, as in France, was always preferred for making soup. It was not, however, of coarse brown ware, as with us; for, Socrates, in his conversation with Hippias on the Beautiful, observes that, when properly made, round, smooth, and well-baked, the chytra was very handsome, particularly that large sort which contained upwards of seven gallons. It had two handles, and was evidently glazed. In stirring the chytra while boiling, the Attic cook made choice of a ladle turned from the wood of the fig-tree, which, it is said, communicated an agreeable flavour to the soup, and, in Socrates's opinion, was preferable to one of gold which, being very weighty, might chance to crack the pot, spill the broth, and extinguish the fire."
There was used in the kitchen a sort of candelabrum, or lamp-stand, which Clearchos merely names. Then followed the mortar, the stool, the sponge, the cauldron, the kneading-trough, the mug, the oil
2 Athen. xi. 50, olivn, a vinegar cruet.-Sch. Aristoph. Eq. 1301. öpxn, a pickle-jar.-Vesp. 676.
Athen. xiv. 60. 4 Plat. Hipp. Maj. t. v. p. 425, sqq.
3 Plat. Opp. t. v. p. 429. seq. Schol. Aristoph. Acharn. 244.
Alask, the rush-basket, the large knife, the cleaver, the wooden platter, the bowl, and the larding-pin. Pollux, who had, doubtless, served an apprenticeship to Marcus Aurelius's cook, gives a formidable list of culinary utensils, from which we must be content to select the most remarkable. First, however, we shall show how important a piece of sponge was to an Athenian cook. It often saved him his dinner; for, if any of his stewpans, crocks, or kettles, had suffered from the embraces of Hephæstos, in other words, had got a hole burnt in them, a bit of sponge was drawn into the aperture, and on went the cooking operations as before. In some houses culinary utensils were regarded as a nuisance, the presence of which was not to be constantly endured, and, accordingly, when the master desired to treat his friends, cookey was despatched early in the morning to hire pots and kettles of a broker. To this custom Alexis alludes in his Exile :
How fertile in new tricks is Chæriphon,
Gapes for the guests, glides in among the first. But we must not pass over the Pyreion or Trypanon, the clumsy contrivance which supplied the place of our lucifers, phosphorus, and tinder-boxes. This was a hollow piece of wood, in which another
1 See a figure, probably, of that instrument in Mus. Chiaramont. tay. 21.
2 Athen. xiv. 60. Poll. x. 95, sqq.-We find mention, also, of the cheese-rasp.-Schol. Aristoph. Pac. 251.
3 Aristoph. Acharn. 439. Brunck is vastly scandalised at the idea of the Scholiast, that any man should have been so poor in At
tica as to be driven to mend his
- Athen. iv. 58.
piece was turned rapidly till sparks of fire flew out.' Soldiers carried these fire-kindlers along with them as a necessary part of their kit.
The ordinary fuel of the Greeks consisted chiefly of wood and charcoal," (kept in rush or wicker baskets,) though the use of mineral coal was not altogether unknown to them. In Attica, where wood was always scarce, they economically made use of vine.cuttings, and even the green branches of the fig tree with the leaves on. The charcoal of Acharnæ, the best probably in the country, was sometimes prepared from the scarlet oak. To prevent the wood, used in their saloons, halls, and drawing-rooms from smoking, it was often boiled? in water or steeped in dregs of oil. The use of the bellows 8 was known in IIellas from the remotest antiquity. They had likewise a kind of osier flap, with a handle, and shaped like a fan, which at times supplied the place of a pair of bellows.
There were chopping-blocks' both of wood and stone, mortars, fish-kettles, frying-pans, and spits of all dimensions," some being so diminutive that thrushes and other small birds could be roasted on them. Their ends in the heroic ages rested on stone hobs, but afterwards andirons were invented, probably of fanciful shape as in modern France. Occasionally they would appear to have been manufactured of lead. To these we may add the ovens, the bean and barley-roasters, the sieves of bronze and other materials, the wine-strainers in the form of colanders, the crate for earthern-ware, and the chafing-dish.
i Plat. de Rep. iv. t. vi. p. 194. 8 Schol. Aristoph. Acharn. 853. Pollux. x. 146. vii. 113.
Athen. ï. 71. . Cf. Schol. Aristoph. Acharn. 9 Schol. Aristoph. Acharn. 319. 34, 302, 314. Plat. de Legg. t. Vesp. 238. kredypa a flesh-hook. viii. 116.
Sch. Eq. 769. 3 Theoph. de Lap. $ 16.
10 Schol. Aristoph. Vesp. 924. 4 Schol. Aristoph. Lysist. 308. 11 Schol. Aristoph. Nub. 179.
5 Schol. Aristoph. Acharn. 312. 1. Aristoph. Acharn. 34. Cooks' Cf. Schol. Vesp. 145,326.
tables were made of wicker-work 1 Sch. Aristopli. Acharn. 587. or olive-wood. Etym. Mag. 298. i Plin. Hist. Nat. xv. 8. 36, seq.
FOOD OF HOMERIC TIMES — MEAT, FISH, ETC.
HAVING described the implements with which a Greek meal was prepared, let us next inquire of what materials it consisted, and how it was eaten. There will be no occasion in pursuing this investigation to adhere to any very strict method. It will probably be sufficient to make a few broad divisions and a flexible outline which we can fill up as the materials fall in our way.
What the original inhabitants of Hellas ate might no doubt be satisfactorily inferred from the accounts we possess of nations still existing in the same state of civilisation. But it is nevertheless curious to examine their traditions relating to the subject. Ælian, who has preserved many notices of remote antiquity, gives a list of various kinds of food, which, as he would appear to think, constituted the chief, if not the whole, sustenance of several ancient nations. The Arcadians lived, he says, upon acorns; the Argives upon pears, the Athenians upon figs ;' the wild pear-tree furnished the Tirynthians with their favourite food; a sort of cane was the chief dainty of the Indians; of the Karamanians? the date; millet of the Mæotæ and Sauromatæ ; while the Persians delighted chiefly in cardamums and pistachio nuts.*
1 Cf. Plut. Quæst. Græc. 51. 2 Cf. Dion. Perieg. 1082.
3 These people were great eaters, and held none in estimation but those who resembled them. Aristoph. Acharn, 74. sqq.
* Ælian. Var. Hist. iii. 39.
Perizonius in his note on this passage observes, that aniog and axpás are but different names. for the same thing, both signifying “ the pear," the former term prevailing among the Argives, the latter among the Tirynthians and
The tradition that while some degree of civilisation already existed in the East, many tribes of Hellas still subsisted upon acorns, has given rise to much curious disquisition. It is abundantly clear, however, that the fruit of our English oak is not what is meant; for, upon this, no one who has made the experiment will for one moment imagine that man could subsist; but every kind of production comprehended by the Greeks under the term “ acorn,” (Cámavos). Gerard, an old English botanist, enumerates chestnuts among acorns, and Xenophon calls dates “the acorns of the palm-tree.” The mast, however, of a tree common in Greece, would, as Mitford thinks, afford a not unwholesome nourishment, though he is quite right in supposing that it could not have been a favourite food in more civilised times. While upon the subject of acorns, this ingenious and able writer appears disposed to make somewhat merry with a certain project of Socrates. If we rightly comprehend him, which very possibly we do not, he means to accuse the philosopher of reducing the citizens of his airy republic to very short commons indeed, nothing but a little beech-mast, and a few myrtle-berries. This borders strongly on the notion of the comic writer, who describes the Athenians as living on air and hope. But though abstemious enough, Socrates was not so unreasonable as to require even his Utopians to fight and philosophise upon a diet so scanty.
Laconians. By the other Greeks both words were used promiscuously, though ärlog was the more common. This able commenta tor objects to the assertion of his author, that the Hindoos lived on cane, since they also ate millet, * rice, &c. But Ælian could really have intended nothing more than that the articles he enumerates were in common use among the nations spoken of. Otherwise
the whole must be regarded as a mere fable. The canes, mentioned by Ælian, are those from which sugar has been from very remote antiquity extracted.
Quique bibunt tenerâ dulces ab arundine succos.
Lucan. Pharsal. iii. 237. 1 See Goguet, i. 160, seq.
. Hist. of Greece, i. 9, note. Cf. Anab. ii. 3.