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.]