And the tenth to madness extreme enough to make people throw stones

From Apuleius’ Florida (20.1-2 in the Loeb edition):

There is a famous saying of a wise man over dinner: “The first bowl,” said he, “is for thirst, the second for cheer, the third for pleasure, the fourth for delirium.” Not so the Muses’ bowl: the more often drunk and the more strongly mixed, the more it promotes the health of the mind.

Sapientis viri super mensam celebre dictum est: “Prima,” inquit, “creterra ad sitim pertinet, secunda ad hilaritatem, tertia ad voluptatem, quarta ad insaniam.” Verum enimvero Musarum creterra versa vice quanto crebrior quantoque meracior, tanto propior ad animi sanitatem.

The footnote compares this to a saying of Anarcharsis reported by Diogenes Laertius (1.103):

It was a saying of his that the vine bore three kinds of grapes: the first of pleasure, the next of intoxication, and the third of disgust.

Οὗτος τὴν ἄμπελον εἶπε τρεῖς φέρειν βότρυς· τὸν πρῶτον ἡδονῆς· τὸν δεύτερον μέθης· τὸν τρίτον ἀηδίας.

But there is a more extensive and more amusing version by Eubulus quoted in Athenaeus (2.36.c). Dionysus is speaking:

Because I mix up only three bowls of wine for
sensible people. One is dedicated to good health,
and they drink it first. The second is dedicated
to love and pleasure, and the third to sleep;
wise guests finish it up
and go home. The fourth bowl no longer
belongs to me but to outrage.
The fifth belongs to arguments;
the sixth to wandering drunk through the streets; the seventh to black eyes;
the eighth to the bailiff; the ninth to an ugly black humor;
and the tenth to madness extreme enough to make people throw stones.

τρεῖς γὰρ μόνους κρατῆρας ἐγκεραννύω
τοῖς εὖ φρονοῦσι· τὸν μὲν ὑγιείας ἕνα,
ὃν πρῶτον ἐκπίνουσι, τὸν δὲ δεύτερον |
ἔρωτος ἡδονῆς τε, τὸν τρίτον δ᾿ ὕπνου,
ὃν ἐκπιόντες οἱ σοφοὶ κεκλημένοι
οἴκαδε βαδίζουσ᾿. ὁ δὲ τέταρτος οὐκέτι ἡμέτερός ἐστ᾿, ἀλλ᾿
ὕβρεος· ὁ δὲ πέμπτος βοῆς·
ἕκτος δὲ κώμων· ἕβδομος δ᾿ ὑπωπίων·
<ὁ δ᾿> ὄγδοος κλητῆρος· ὁ δ᾿ ἔνατος χολῆς·
δέκατος δὲ μανίας, ὥστε καὶ βάλλειν ποεῖ

Somewhere in my head there’s a related French proverb or quote but all I can conjure right now is Après bon vin, bon coussin (after good wine, a good pillow).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s