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17
THE PLAGUE AND THE MERCHANTS.

goods and chattels, and having no homes, they lived in stifling booths and in tents. Dying men lay tumbling one upon another in the streets, and about every spring and conduit. The temples, also, were full of dead, for, oppressed with the violence of the calamity, and not knowing what to do, men grew careless even of holy things. The laws which they formerly used touching funerals were all broken. When one had made a funeral pile, another getting before him would throw in his dead and give it fire. And when one was burning, another would come, and having cast therein him whom he carried, go his way again. Yet up to that time no feeling amongst the Athenians was more profound than their respect for the dead.

The city was filled with wailing, horror, and loathsomeness, but in the midst of despair there were frantic outbursts of outrageous pleasures. Licentiousness was unbridled, and men