When I was taken out to Asia on the staff of a treasury official, I accepted some hospitality in Pergamum . . .
not only because of the smart house but also because my host had a very handsome son and I thought
up a way to prevent his father of becoming suspicious of me. Whenever any mention was made at the table
of taking advantage of pretty boys, I flared up so violently and was so stern about my ears being offended
by obscene talk that his mother regarded me as a real old world philosopher. From then on, I escorted the
young lad to the gymnasium, organized his studies, taught him and gave him good advice.
One holiday when the festivities had cut short his schoolwork, we were lounging in the dining
room, as the long day’s enjoyment had made us too lazy to go to bed. About midnight, I realized the boy
was awake. So in a very nervous whisper I breathed a prayer.
‘Dear Venus,’ I said, ‘if I can kiss this boy without his knowing it, I’ll give him a pair of doves
Hearing the price of my pleasure, the boy started snoring, and therefore I went to work on the
pretender and kissed him several times. Content with this beginning, I rose early the next morning and
brought him the choice pair of doves he was expecting and thus fulfilled my vow.
The next night, given the same opportunity, I altered my prayer.
‘If I can run my hands all over him,’ I said, ‘without his feeling anything, I’ll give him two really
savage fighting cocks for his patience.’
At this offer the boy moved over to me of his own accord. I think he was afraid I might fall asleep.
Naturally I dispelled his worries and his whole body became a whirlpool in which I lost myself, although I
stopped short of the ultimate pleasure. Then when day came, I brought the delighted boy what I’d promised.
The third night offered similar opportunities, and I got up, came close to his ear, as he tossed
restlessly, and said:
‘O eternal gods, if I can get the full satisfaction of my desires from his, for this happiness
tomorrow I shall give the boy the finest Macedonian thoroughbred — but only with this proviso: he must
The lad had never slept so soundly before. First I filled my hands with his milk-white breasts, then
I clung to his lips, and finally I reduced all my longing to one climax.
In the morning he sat in his room and waited for me to follow my usual practice. Of course, you
know how much easier it is to buy doves and cocks than a thoroughbred and, besides, I was nervous in case
such an extravagant gift might make my kindness seem suspect. So after walking around for a few hours, I
returned to my host’s house and gave the boy nothing more than a kiss. He looked around, as he threw his
arms around my neck, and said:
‘Please, sir, where’s my thoroughbred?’