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Sicilian kalyx-krater, Maron Painter; mid-fourth century BC, Museo Archeologico Regionale Eoliano di Lipari

Odysseus receives wine from Maron, Odyssey Book 9

"I told the rest of my trustworthy crew
to stay there by the ship and guard it,
while I selected twelve of my best men
and went off to explore.  I took with me
a goatskin full of dark sweet wine.  Maron,
Euanthes' son, one of Apollo's priests,
the god who kept guard over Ismarus,
had given it me because, to show respect,
we had protected him, his wife, and child.
He lived in a grove of trees, a piece of ground 
sacred to Apollo.  He gave me splendid gifts—
seven finely crafted golden talents,
a pure silver mixing bowl, and wine as well,
a total of twelve jars poured out unmixed,
drink fit for gods.  None of his servants,
men or women in his household, knew
about this wine.  He was the only one,
other than his wife and one house steward.
Each time they drank that honey-sweet red wine,
he'd fill one cup with it and pour that out 
in twenty cups of water, and the smell
arising from the mixing bowl was sweet, 
astonishingly so—to tell the truth,
no one's heart could then refuse to drink it.
I took some of this wine in a large goatskin,
a pouch of food, as well.  My soldier's heart
was warning me a man might soon attack,
someone invested with enormous power,
a savage with no sense of law and justice.


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