Better Drunk Than Dead

Anacreonta 48

“Bring me a cup, son.
It is much better that I lie here
drunk instead of dead.”

φέρε μοι κύπελλον, ὦ παῖ·
μεθύοντα γάρ με κεῖσθαι
πολὺ κρεῖσσον ἢ θανόντα.

Anacreonta 52b

“The hair on my head is gray.
Boy, give me water, add some wine
Make my heart numb

Soon you will cover me, no longer alive
There’s nothing the dead desire.”

πολιαὶ στέφουσι κάραν·
δὸς ὕδωρ, βάλ᾿ οἶνον, ὦ παῖ·
τὴν ψυχήν μου κάρωσον.
βραχὺ μὴ ζῶντα καλύπτεις.
ὁ θανὼν οὐκ ἐπιθυμεῖ.

Section of an illuminated manuscript. Wrtingi at top, one drunk figure on his back, another facing him holding his head
Illumination from AM 147 4to of two intoxicated 15th century Icelanders


Leave a Reply