Date: Wed 08 Mar 2000 - 16:48:08 EET
>From: "Gary R Switzer" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: Cold Beef
>On Cattle as Sacrifices:
>I just finished an interesting book, "Courtesans & Fishcakes: The
>Concuming Passions of Classical Athens" by James Davidson
>(ISBN 0-06-097766-3) where the author makes the point that all
>domestic animals (beef, pork and mutton) were butchered after
>sacrifice in a manner to ensure that all the participants received
>equal portions, with no effort to distinguish between various cuts.
>That meant that some portions were mostly fat and bone while
>some were mostly rump or fillet, so that lots had to be drawn to
>give everyone an equal chance at a good bit. I am undecided
>as yet if the Orlanthi in general follow this practice. I'm sure
>someone somewhere does.
It seems a little unlikely. This practice clearly grew out of the
Athenian 'middling ideology' and their desire to eliminate social privilege
among citizens of the polis. Without that sort of incentive, it's sort of
illogical to ignore the different cuts on a meat animal. Orlanthi society,
however, is clearly stratified to some extent, since it has kings and
thanes and thralls, so it seems improbable that they would enact traditions
that aggressively undermine their social system.
Andrew E. Larsen
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