PHILOSOPHIES GOING CHEAP

Scene: A large auction-room with a platform at one end. The proprietors, Zeus and Hermes, and two of their employees are preparing for a sale.

ZEUS [to one of the assistants]: Here, you ! Put out the chairs and get the place ready for the customers. [Turning to the other.] And you bring in the philosophers and line them up on the platform. Only do tidy them up a bit first, so that they look reasonably attractive. Try and give them as much sales-appeal as possible.

[The assistants carry out his orders.]

Hermes, would you act as auctioneer? Collect as many customers as you can, and ask them to step inside. Say we've got a wide selection of philosophical systems for sale, in fact all the brands available. If anyone can't pay cash, he can do it by instalments spread over the next twelve months - with suitable security, of course.

[Hermes goes out into the street, and customers soon start streaming into the auction-room and sitting down on the chairs. Finally Hermes returns and closes the door.]

HERMES [quietly, to Zeus]: Well, we've got a full house. We'd better not hang about and keep them waiting.

ZEUS: All right, let's start the sale.

HERMES: Who do you want put up first?

ZEUS: That long-haired type from Ionia. He's the most impressive to look at.

HERMES: Hey, you! Pythagoras! Come down and let the gentlemen take a look at you.

[A lean, bearded man, badly in need of a hair-cut, steps down off the platform and starts parading slowly round the room.]

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Satirical Sketches
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Lucian - Satirical Sketches *
  • Contents *
  • Introduction *
  • Talks *
  • The Dream or a Chapter of My Life 23
  • Zeuxis or Centaurs and Elephants *
  • Sketches *
  • Conversations in Low Society *
  • Mother Knows Best or a Young Girl's Guide to Success *
  • The Language of True Love 41
  • The Results of Shooting a Line 43
  • Conversations in High Society *
  • The New Sleeping Partner *
  • Zeus is Indisposed 51
  • The Reluctant Parent 53
  • A Beauty Competition 55
  • Conversations in the Underworld *
  • No Baggage Allowance *
  • Menippus Gets Away with It 72
  • A Slight Change of Sex 74
  • How to Enjoy Life after Seventy 75
  • Charon Sees Life *
  • Menippus Goes to Hell *
  • Icaromenippus or Up in the Clouds *
  • An Interview with Hesiod *
  • Some Awkward Questions for Zeus *
  • Philosophies Going Cheap *
  • Fishing for Phonies or the Philosophers' Day out *
  • The Pathological Liar or the Unbeliever *
  • Stories *
  • Alexander or the Bogus Oracle *
  • The True History *
  • Notes and Glossary *
  • Notes *
  • Glossary *
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