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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



9613
Plutarch, Dinner Of The Seven Wise Men, 159b


nan[16] Yea, doubtless, replies Solon, or we may be reputed more injudicious than the Egyptians. For when any person dies among them, they open him and show him so dissected to the sun; his guts they throw into the river, to the remaining parts they allow a decent burial, for they think the body now pure and clean; and to speak truly, they are the foulest parts of the body, and like that lower hell crammed with dead carcasses and at the same time flowing with offensive rivers, such as flame with fire and are disturbed with tempests. No live creature feeds upon another living creature, but we first take away their lives


nanCertainly," said Solon, "let us not show ourselves to be less discriminating than the Egyptians, who cut open the dead body and expose it to the sun, and then cast certain parts of it into the river, and perform their offices on the rest of the body, feeling that this part has now at last been made clean. For this, in truth, it is which constitutes the pollution of our flesh and its bowels of Hell, as it were, teeming with frightful streams and wind, intermingled with burning fire and corpses. For no living man feeds upon another living creature; nay, we put to death the animate creatures and destroy these things that grow in the ground, which also are partakers in life, in that they absorb food, and increase in size; and herein we do wrong.


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egypt Nihan and Frevel, Purity and the Forming of Religious Traditions in the Ancient Mediterranean World and Ancient Judaism (2013) 273
funeral (also burial)' Nihan and Frevel, Purity and the Forming of Religious Traditions in the Ancient Mediterranean World and Ancient Judaism (2013) 273
judea Nihan and Frevel, Purity and the Forming of Religious Traditions in the Ancient Mediterranean World and Ancient Judaism (2013) 273