UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE ANCIENT WORLD.
The great day was the day of the procession. In the morning outside of the city the
throngs gathered. Here the column was formed. At the head of the procession came a band
of flute players and citharists. Then followed the Athenian soldiery-infantry and cavalry.
Behind this division marched all those who had ever been crowned as victors in the public
contests of the country. The next division was composed of priests, leading the animals
presently to be offered in sacrifice. Next followed the old men of Athens, each carrying
some costly gift to be offered to the goddess. Then came the woman's column of the
procession-matrons and maidens chosen for their beauty and reputation. In the midst they
drew in a car the peplos, or embroidered robe, with which the statue of Pallas was to be
clad at the end of the march.
Through the beautiful streets of the city the procession made its way, pausing at the
various shrines and altars, and then ascended the hill to the citadel. Before the temple a
burst of music was sounded from the instruments, and then, in the sublime presence of the
Protector of the city, the votive gifts were laid and the sacrifices offered by the
If the Greek mind, participating in these great festivals, could have been fathomed, there
would have been revealed a double class of sentiments; the one looking joyfully upon life,
and the other scanning death with apprehension and dread. There were exhibited in the
different parts of the ceremonies the traces of these conflicting feelings, the one class
tending to produce merriment and even _________________________________ 1 No one can
thoughtfully study the life of the Athenians without being constantly reminded of the
Parisians of the last and present centuries. Athens was the Paris of antiquity, and Paris
is the Athens of the modern world. There are to be seen in both peoples the same qualities
of nature-that same excitability of temper, in which are strangely mingled the opposites
of heroism and weakness, of excessive joyousness and deep gloom, of hope and despair.