Thursday, February 15, 2007

Plutarch Explains the Romans

It seems that the Greeks were curious about why Roman guys always called ahead.

Plutarch: Roman Questions (Part 1 of 5): "9 Why is it that, when men who have wives at home are returning either from the country or from abroad, they send ahead to tell their wives that they are coming?

Is it because this is the mark of a man who is confident that his wife is not up to any mischief, whereas coming suddenly and unexpectedly is, as it were, an arrival by stratagem and unfair vigilance; and are they eager to send good tidings about themselves to their wives as if they felt certain that their wives would be longing for them and expecting them?
Or is it rather that the men themselves long to hear news of their wives, if they shall find them safe at home and longing for their husbands?
Or is it because during their husbands' absence the wives have more household duties and occasions, and also dissensions and outbursts against those of the household? Therefore the notice is given in advance that the wife may rid herself of these matters and make for her husband his welcome home undisturbed and pleasant. "

2 comments:

Steve said...

I'd say it means that even in imperial Rome married men were p-whipped.

(I know as I'm married...)

Mitch Kief said...

Yep. Even after a hard campaign of sacking and looting, a Roman general had to let his wife know what time he'd thought he would be home.