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XII.—Father Liber—Bacchus.

Ye yourselves say that Father Liber was assuredly twice begotten.  First of all he was born in India of Proserpine and Jupiter, and waging war against the Titans, when his blood was shed, he expired even as one of mortal men.  Again, restored from his death, in another womb Semele conceived him again of Jupiter, a second Maia, whose womb being divided, he is taken away near to birth from his dead mother, and as a nursling is given to be nourished to Nisus.  From this being twice born he is called Dionysus; and his religion is falsely observed in vanity; and they celebrate his orgies such that now they themselves seem to be either foolhardy or burlesquers of Mimnermomerus.  They conspire in evil; they practise beforehand with pretended heat, that they may deceive others into saying that a deity is present.  Hence you manifestly see men living a life like his, violently excited with the wine which he himself had pressed out; they have given him divine honour in the midst of their drunken excess.

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