The Literary Salon

A free salon wherein patrons and passers-by may view or contribute ideas on literary and generally intellectual matters. The blog will strive to maintain its commitment to wit, humour and perspicuous analysis.

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Location: Toronto, now Ottawa, Ont, Canada

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Belated Valentine/Marriage post

As I was desultorily flipping through volume I of Plutarch's Lives (the Dryden Translation, which is not translated by John Dryden), I happened to come across a passage of some interest to modern readers in the life of Romulus, legendary founder of Rome. Given the scarcity of women and the necessity of population/generation for the maintenance of a state or city, Romulus and his men went over and abducted Sabine women. After this Plutarch writes the following:

It continues also a custom at this very day for the bride not of herself to pass her husband’s threshold, but to be lifted over, in memory that the Sabine virgins were carried in by violence, and did not go in of their own will.

How touching. I wonder if it's true.


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