"Throw Fear To The Winds"

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Last Updated on August 14, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 199

Context: The quotation is alien to the Greeks and is instead the result of translation, being as it is an English proverb usually given as "throw cares to the wind." Another proverb of late Elizabethan times is embodied in an anonymous quotation, "He throw'd to th' wind all regard for whats law-full." This latter is in the spirit of the comedy by Aristophanes, who is rebuking the demagogues of Athens, especially the jurors who feather their nests with vindictive judgments. An old man Philocleon (a satiric attack on Cleon) has been imprisoned in his own house by his son to prevent the old juror from joining the other dicasts, the villainous lawyers, and the judges at court. A mock trial is held to show the old fellow the ridiculousness of the legal life and how much better it would be to enjoy life, "to throw fears to the wind," or indulge in one continuous round of pleasures, if everyone threw off the tyranny of the dishonest politicians. The play ends on a hilarious note of the old man's stealing a flute girl and dancing licentiously in the street, where he, indeed, and the barristers,

throw fear to the winds.

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