A Turtle, a Horse, and a Courtesan Walk into a Bar

And all in the same way

Homeric Hymn to Hermes lines 25-28:

Ἑρμῆς τοι πρώτιστα χέλυν τεκτήνατ᾽ ἀοιδόν:
ἥ ῥά οἱ ἀντεβόλησεν ἐπ᾽ αὐλείῃσι θύρῃσι
βοσκομένη προπάροιθε δόμων ἐριθηλέα ποίην,
σαῦλα ποσὶν βαίνουσα:

For it was Hermes who first made the tortoise a singer. The creature fell in his way at the courtyard gate, where it was feeding on the rich grass before the dwelling, waddling along. (Hugh Evelyn-White translation)

Hermes it was who first crafted the singing tortoise. He encountered it at the yard entrance as it grazed on the lush grass in front of the dwelling, sidling along on its legs. (M.L. West translation)

Semonides 18 :

Etymologicum Genuinum

διασαυλούμενος: putting on airs and having an affected manner . . . from σαῦλος which means effeminate and haughty. Cf. Semonides in iambics:

with mincing gait and arched neck like a horse’s


διασαυλούμενος· ἁβρυνόμενος καὶ διαθρυπτόμενος . . . παρὰ τὸν σαῦλον τὸν τρυφερὸν καὶ γαῦρον. Σιμωνίδης ἐν ἰάμβοις·

καὶ σαῦλα βαίνων ἵππος ὣς †κορωνίτης. (David Campbell translation)

Anacreon 168:

Διονύσου σαῦλαι Βασσαρίδες

The hip-swaying Bassarids of Dionysus (David Campbell translation)

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