Onions (was Re: DWJ birthday card(s))

Hallie O'Donovan hallieod at indigo.ie
Fri Aug 20 06:59:45 EDT 2004


>  > Hopefully the words 'displacement activity' will be sufficient and I
>>  won't need to give detailed descriptions of my attempts to find
>>  mention of Odysseus eating an onion.
><perks up at the sign of the words 'displacement activity'> I wonder
>whether Perseus (online classical database) has a searchable Odyssey in
>English? Or I suppose I could search the Greek but I don't think their
>search function is all that good at finding all the different cases,

Well, happy to have provided you with displacement activity 
possibilities, but I don't think you need do the English search! 
Now, I suppose teaching myself enough Greek to do the search in Greek 
as well would be a displacement activity of epic proportions 
(sorry!), but that sounds a little overboard (sorry again!) in the 

>  > Anyway, the only onion I could
>>  find which goes near someone's mouth was in the Iliad rather than the
>>  Odyssey and has nothing to do with Odysseus, but is far weirder than
>>  anyone's having an onion in a boat.  It's the 'Pramneian wine' served
>>  for Nestor - a delightful mixture of wine, grated goat's milk cheese
>>  and barley.  And 'onion to go with the drinking'.  Yum.   (Circe also
>>  makes the drink but there's no mention of the onion, which is a bit
>>  of a relief.)
>Eep. Maybe it was a little cocktail onion on a stick?

Yeah.  I was also wondering whether there was an alternate tradition 
of Odysseus' sticking the cocktail onions in his ears to get by the 


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