Private letter (?) about One-eyed Astrologer: Third/fourth century
A tantalising fragment of a letter (or quotation of one) which alludes to the activities of a one-eyed astrologer, as though part of a plot of a novel. The hand, however, which is informal and documentary, is not the sort expected for a literary text. The author refers to the arrival up there (ano) of one Serenilla, which sounds like an event of everyday life, and to a festival. Another event is dated by the narrator by the rise of the Dog-star, which presaged the rise of the Nile flood and was therefore important in the Egyptian calendar and religion.
. . . I withdrew and went to sleep, and I sent the astrologer the one-eyed one (monophthalmon) to call you and he said that he could not find you. At lamp-lighting I returned and when I heard from Serenilla the things that you had done to her I was upset that you behaved in a way unworthy of you. So receive her kindly up there before the (end of the?) festival. And I would have been there already had I not been dog-devoured (kunobrotos, i.e. bitten by a dog?) on the very day of the rise of the Dog star, the 25th, by a mad dog, and until now I . . . terribly . . ..
The Oxyrhynchus Papyri vol. LXI no. 4126