An astonishment a day- 
drives your depression away...

The art of stuffing, or the 'Trojan Pig'.

As an introduction hundred year old wine from Falerno was served. Then, the servants, while singing a greeting song composed by the host, brought in a huge tray with a mountain of cold cuts: spicy pigs udder, rooster combs, rabbits, testicles, flamingo tongues, ostrich brains, etc.. The feast begins. On the table appear snails in sweet and sour sauce, fried dormice which are eaten whole dipped in honey and sprinkled with poppy seeds, and other delicacies. Fish are brought out still alive and blanched with a boiling hot sauce. Guests eat them still alive. The poultry is served next. Small ortolans fed with figs, covered in egg yolk and sprinkled with pepper are also eaten whole. Next is the baked geese and swan - but here is a surprise - it turns out that it is not poultry after all, but carved pork done to look just like the birds. And then finally the main course - the proud host and cook present - a whole calf stuffed with lamb, stuffed with piglet, stuffed with rooster, stuffed with chicken, stuffed with rabbit, stuffed with thrush. 

After this multi layered meal, some of the patrons retreat to the 'vomitorium' - a room created especially for the vomiting needs of the guests This allows them to consume more meals after emptying their stomachs. The Romans would eat to vomit, and vomit to carry on eating as observed by Seneca. But poets love to make nasty comments......

One of the courses was an entire pig. When the servants triumphantly brought it out, the host fell into a rage of fury. It turns out that the cook had forgotten to gut the animal. For this he will receive the appropriate punishment - that is to be strangled in front of all of the guests, and his last act will be to correct his mistake. The cook - begging for his life to be spared pokes his knife into the belly of the pig. And to the delight of the host and the guests, a mountain of sausages tumbles out of the pig. The cook is awarded a crown for his great idea, and the guests indulge in the fabulous sausages of the meal which is called the 'Trojan pig' after the well known 'Trojan horse' from Greek history. 

There were many more courses, and many visits to the 'vomitorium' and all due to Trimalchion, the Roman millionaire, a former slave, who was in a position to but buy anything that the world offered... 



Romans knew how to feast.. 



(C) (selected from publications of 
 R. Antoszewski

Titirangi, Auckland, 
New Zeland

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April 2003