ABOUT WHAT IS DUB TO THE BODIES OF THE DEAD AND
OF THE LIVING (i.e. ABOUT BURYING AND SUICIDE).
In the most ancient times the bodies of the dead were Primitive
exposed to the air by being thrown on the fields without customs.
any covering; also sick people were exposed on the
fields and in the mountains, and were left there. If
they died there, they had the fate just mentioned ; but
if they recovered, they returned to their dwellings.
Thereupon there appeared a legislator who ordered Page 283.
people to expose their dead to the wind. In conse¬
quence they constructed roofed buildings with walls of
rails, through which the wind blew, passing over the
dead, as something similar is the case in the grave-
towers of the Zoroastrians.
After they had practised this custom for a long time,
Narayana prescribed to them to hand the dead over to
the fire, and ever since .they are in the habit of burn¬
ing them, so that nothing remains of them, and every
defilement, dirt, and smell is annihilated at once, so
as scarcely to leave any trace behind.
Nowadays the Slavonians, too, burn their dead, whilst Greek par-
the ancient Greeks seem to have had both customs,
that of burning and that of burying. Socrates speaks
in the book Phaedo, after Crito had asked him in what
manner he wanted to be buried : " As you wish, when
you make arrangements for me. I shall not flee from
you." Then he spoke to those around him : "Give to
Crito regarding myself the opposite guarantee of that