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Philinna. Her Mother

Mother. You must be mad, Philinna; what was the matter with you at the dinner last night? Diphilus was in tears this morning when he came and told me how he had been treated. You were tipsy, he said, and made an exhibition of yourself, dancing when he asked you not to; then you kissed his friend Lamprias, and when Diphilus did not like that, you left him

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and went and put your arms round Lamprias; and he choking with rage all the time. And afterwards you would not go near him, but let him cry by himself, and kept singing and teasing him.

Phi. Ah, mother, he never told you how he behaved; if you knew how rude he was, you would not take his part. He neglected me and made up to Thais, Lamprias's girl, before Lamprias came. I was angry, and let him see what I thought of him, and then he took hold of Thais's ear, bent her neck back and gave her--oh, such a kiss! I thought it would never end. So I began to cry; but he only laughed, and kept whispering to her--about me, of course; Thais was looking at me and smiling. However, when they heard Lamprias coming, and had had enough of each other at last, I did take my place by him all the same, not to give him an excuse for a fuss afterwards. It was Thais got up and danced first, showing her ankles ever so much, as if no one else had pretty ones. And when she stopped, Lamprias never said a word, but Diphilus praised her to the skies--such perfect time! such varied steps! foot and music always right; and what a lovely ankle! and so on, and so on; it might have been the Sosandra of Calamis he was complimenting, and not Thais; what she is really like, you know well enough. And how she insulted me, too! 'If some one is not ashamed of her spindle-shanks,' she said, 'she will get up and dance now.' Well, that is all, mammy; of course I did get up and dance. What was I to do? take it quietly and make her words seem true and let her be queen?

Mother. You are too touchy, my lass; you should have taken no notice. But go on.

Phi. Well, the others applauded, but Diphilus lay on his back and looked up at the ceiling, till I was tired and gave up. Mother. But what about kissing Lamprias? is that true?

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and going across and embracing him? Well, why don't you speak? Those are things I cannot forgive.

Phi. I wanted to pay him out.

Mother. And then not sitting near him! singing while he was in tears! Think how poor we are, girl; you forget how much we have had from him, and what last winter would have been if Aphrodite had not sent him to us.

Phi. I dare say! and I am to let him outrage my feelings just for that?

Mother. Oh, be as angry as you like, but no tit for tat. You ought to know that if a lover's feelings are outraged his love ends, and he finds out his folly. You have always been too hard on the lad; pull too tight, and the rope breaks, you know.


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