BOOK THE FIRST
7. Chapter VII
While Glaucus was thus conversing, Lepidus, with closed eyes and scarce
perceptible breath, was undergoing all the mystic operations, not one of
which he ever suffered his attendants to omit. After the perfumes and the
unguents, they scattered over him the luxurious powder which prevented any
further accession of heat: and this being rubbed away by the smooth surface
of the pumice, he began to indue, not the garments he had put off, but those
more festive ones termed 'the synthesis', with which the Romans marked their
respect for the coming ceremony of supper, if rather, from its hour (three
o'clock in our measurement of time), it might not be more fitly denominated
dinner. This done, he at length opened his eyes and gave signs of returning
At the same time, too, Sallust betokened by a long yawn the evidence of
'It is supper time,' said the epicure; 'you, Glaucus and Lepidus, come and
sup with me.'
'Recollect you are all three engaged to my house next week,' cried Diomed,
who was mightily proud of the acquaintance of men of fashion.
'Ah, ah! we recollect,' said Sallust; 'the seat of memory, my Diomed, is
certainly in the stomach.'
Passing now once again into the cooler air, and so into the street, our
gallants of that day concluded the ceremony of a Pompeian bath.