Little Doggie in Heaven

Lucian, Assembly of the Gods, 5

 “And the most absurd thing of all, Gods, is that even the dog of Erigone–he has been raised up so that that little girl won’t be upset because she can’t have her sweet little doggie in heaven! Doesn’t this seem to be an insult, a drunken joke? Listen, there’s more.”

 καὶ ὃ πάντων γελοιότατον, ὦ θεοί, καὶ τὸν κύνα τῆς Ἠριγόνης, καὶ τοῦτον ἀνήγαγεν, ὡς μὴ ἀνιῷτο ἡ παῖς εἰ μὴ ἕξει ἐν τῷ οὐρανῷ τὸ ξύνηθες ἐκεῖνο καὶ ὅπερ ἠγάπα κυνίδιον. ταῦτα οὐχ ὕβρις ὑμῖν δοκεῖ καὶ παροινία καὶ γέλως; ἀκούσατε δ᾿ οὖν καὶ ἄλλους.

Literary Papyri, 109.2

“A dog is interred beneath this marker—
Tauron who was not undone when faced with a killer.
For he encountered a boar in direct combat-
It could not be passed as it puffed out its jaw
And drove a furrow in his chest as it dripped with white foam.
But the dog struck two feet into its back
And grabbed the bristling beast in the middle of its chest
And drove it down into the ground—he made a gift
Of the beast to Hades and died himself, as is the custom for an Indian.
He saved the life of Zenon, the hunter he followed.
So he is buried here beneath this light dust.”

σκύλαξ ὁ τύμβωι τῶιδ᾿ ὕπ᾿ ἐκτερισμένος
Ταύρων, ἐπ᾿ αὐθένταισιν οὐκ ἀμήχανος·
κάπρωι γὰρ ὡς συνῆλθεν ἀντίαν ἔριν,
ὁ μέν τις ὡς ἄπλατος οἰδήσας γένυν
5στῆθος κατηλόκιζε λευκαίνων ἀφρῶι,
ὁ δ᾿ ἀμφὶ νώτωι δισσὸν ἐμβαλὼν ἴχνος
ἐδράξατο φρίσσοντος ἐκ στέρνων μέσων
καὶ γᾶι συνεσπείρασεν· Ἀίδαι δὲ δοὺς
τὸν αὐτόχειρ᾿ ἔθναισκεν, Ἰνδὸν ὡς νόμος.
σώιζων δὲ τὸν κυναγὸν ὧι παρείπετο
Ζήνων᾿ ἐλαφρᾶι τᾶιδ᾿ ὑπεστάλη κόνει.

Epigram 11

“Glaukos, overseer, I will place another saying in your thoughts:
Give the dogs dinner first near the courtyard’s gates.
This is better: for the dog hears first when a man
Approaches or if a wild beast dares near the fence.”

Γλαῦκε πέπων, ἐπιών τοι ἔπος τι ἐνὶ φρεσὶ θήσω•
πρῶτον μὲν κυσὶ δεῖπνον ἐπ’ αὐλείῃσι θύρῃσι
δοῦναι• ὣς γὰρ ἄμεινον• ὃ γὰρ καὶ πρῶτον ἀκούει
ἀνδρὸς ἐπερχομένου καὶ ἐς ἕρκεα θηρὸς ἰόντος.

Munich, Staatliche Antikensammlungen, A hound carrying her pup, 500-475 BCE

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