Because We Need It: Timoclea

Painting of Timoclea standing before Alexander the Great - Domenichino c. 1615

“Oh, I’m sorry, were you saying you wanted a piece of this?”

Politically, things seem to be getting worse, not better. There’s been a deadly earthquake in Mexico, a deadly hurricane in the Caribbean — no, not that one, the other one. No, not that one, the other other one. And in the middle of it all, Congress has decided to take another swing at destroying healthcare, and as one might expect, this verse is worse than the first. But when things get hard, we can always think about Timoclea of Thebes.

So I’m not going to pretend that the height of Timoclea’s story opens on a high note, and I’m not even going to go into details, because it’s definitely not what we need right now. (Details are here.) Let’s just say that back in 335 BCE, during the sacking of Thebes, a Thracian captain did something very bad, and he had bad things coming. So he was all, “Hey, now that I’ve completely violated you, do you know of any hidden stashes of money?” And she was all, “Yeah, you’ve done absolutely nothing that would make me resentful of you, so let me show you where there’s some money.” So she leads him into her garden, and she points to the well and says, “Money’s in there,” and the Thracian captain says, “I have no reason to be suspicious, so I’m going to look in that well,” and Timoclea pushed him into the fucking well. And then threw rocks at him until she was sure he was good and dead.

Painting of Timoclea of Thebes pushing a Thracian captain into a well - Elisabetta Sirani, 1959

“Looking for money, huh? WELL, WELL, WE — Eh, never mind, fuck you.”

So in these difficult times, let’s here it for Timoclea, because seriously, fuck that guy.