Her master called her Boukephalē, which was "a Christian compliment." He meant it, he said, as an allusion to the great wild horse tamed by young Alexander the Great. (Of course, Alexander was calling the animal "Ox Head.")
She was not originally from Macedonia, because her mother was Libyan. And her father (clearly Greek from her skin and eyes and nose though not her hair) no one but her mother knew. Her master, Korigedora, had a kind affection for her. He used her not only in the fields but also in his famous church library. She cataloged for him the various books from Alexandria and from Jerusalem, Korinth, Philippi, Antioch, Syria, Silisia, Thessaloniki, Ptolemaida, and Ephesus. She did all required to keep him the faithful Bishop of Vergina: serving him - this husband of Mariam (ΜΑΡΙΑΣ) the Jewess - to make him the requisite "one-wife man" (ΜΙΑΣ ΓΥΝΑΙΚΟΣ ΑΝΗΡ). His sons, then, were Jews. They were circumcised on the eighth day - though more out of custom, he announced, than out of law. He himself was proudly an ethnic of the believers (ΤΩΝ ΠΕΠΙΣΤΕΥΚΟΤΩΝ ΕΘΝΩΝ); specifically, he was Greek - a good label from the collected writings of that Sent-Apostle Paul, the Tarsusian (who, was also "Jewish, Hebrew, a son of Isra-El" and a "Roman" who invariably wrote in Hellene, even to Hellene men). And he prided himself on handling slaves lovingly. On the wall of his study, he had posted a bit of one of the scriptures, a letter of Paul:
ΟΙ ΔΟΥΛΟΙ ΥΠΑΚΟΥΕΤΕ ΤΟΙΣ ΚΥΡΙΟΙΣ ΚΑΤΑ ΣΑΡΚΑ ΜΕΤΑ ΦΟΒΟΥ ΚΑΙ ΤΡΟΜΟΥ ΕΝ ΑΠΛΟΤΗΤΙ ΤΗΣ ΚΑΡΔΙΑΣ ΥΜΩΝ ΩΣ ΤΩ ΧΡΙΣΤΩ ΜΗ ΚΑΤ ΟΦΘΑΛΜΟΔΟΥΛΕΙΑΝ ΩΣ ΑΝΘΡΩΠΑΡΕΣΚΟΙ ΑΛΛ ΩΣ ΔΟΥΛΟΙ ΤΟΥ ΧΡΙΣΤΟΥ ΠΟΙΟΥΝΤΕΣ ΤΟ ΘΕΛΗΜΑ ΤΟΥ ΘΕΟΥ ΕΚ ΨΥΧΗΣ ΜΕΤ ΕΥΝΟΙΑΣ ΔΟΥΛΕΥΟΝΤΕΣ ΤΩ ΚΥΡΙΩ ΚΑΙ ΟΥΚ ΑΝΘΡΩΠΟΙΣ ΕΙΔΟΤΕΣ ΟΤΙ Ο ΕΑΝ ΤΙ ΕΚΑΣΤΟΣ ΠΟΙΗΣΗ ΑΓΑΘΟΝ ΤΟΥΤΟ ΚΟΜΙΕΙΤΑΙ ΠΑΡΑ ΤΟΥ ΚΥΡΙΟΥ ΕΙΤΕ ΔΟΥΛΟΣ ΕΙΤΕ ΕΛΕΥΘΕΡΟΣ ΚΑΙ ΟΙ ΚΥΡΙΟΙ ΤΑ ΑΥΤΑ ΠΟΙΕΙΤΕ ΠΡΟΣ ΑΥΤΟΥΣ ΑΝΙΕΝΤΕΣ ΤΗΝ ΑΠΕΙΛΗΝ ΕΙΔΟΤΕΣ ΟΤΙ ΚΑΙ ΥΜΩΝ ΑΥΤΩΝ Ο ΚΥΡΙΟΣ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΕΝ ΟΥΡΑΝΟΙΣ ΚΑΙ ΠΡΟΣΩΠΟΛΗΨΙΑ ΟΥΚ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΠΑΡ ΑΥΤΩ ΤΟ ΛΟΙΠΟΝ ΑΔΕΛΦΟΙ ΜΟΥ ΕΝΔΥΝΑΜΟΥΣΘΕ ΕΝ ΚΥΡΙΩ ΚΑΙ ΕΝ ΤΩ ΚΡΑΤΕΙ ΤΗΣ ΙΣΧΥΟΣ ΑΥΤΟΥ ΕΝΔΥΣΑΣΘΕ ΤΗΝ ΠΑΝΟΠΛΙΑΝ ΤΟΥ ΘΕΟΥ ΠΡΟΣ ΤΟ ΔΥΝΑΣΘΑΙ ΥΜΑΣ ΣΤΗΝΑΙ ΠΡΟΣ ΤΑΣ ΜΕΘΟΔΕΙΑΣ ΤΟΥ ΔΙΑΒΟΛΟΥHe taught her many things in the privacy of that library.
So, when he was away on a long trip with his sons, and when Miriam was asleep for the night, this slave girl would bring her mother, the Lybian, to the library. She'd unroll the scrolls of the Penta-Teuch. She'd stop at the fifth chapter of ἈΡΙΘΜΟΊ. She'd read aloud to her illiterate mama as if Helen in the plays of Euripides. Except this Helen spoke with bar-bar-ian lips, the mother tongue, that Berber of home. And her reading was playful, what Karen Jobes calls a "bilingual quotation," which she overhears Lynn Visson calling "Condensation, deliberate omission and addition, synecdoche and metonymy, antonymic constructions, grammatical inversion, and the use of semantic equivalents are a few of the tools that help do the job." In her play acting, she did not pretend to be objective. This slave girl was free from that. "I am not certain that the translator is even obliged to make the modern reader understand what is overheard," she said to her mother, as if quoting Phyllis A. Bird.
Or was she quoting Paul, writing to the men in Korinth who taught their women at home after church?
She had the most fun with her mama, unfolding the pages of the copy of that letter Handy the slave (ὈΝΗΣΙΜΟΣ) handed to his master from Paul. (But since her name is lost, or is simply Corrigedora or Buchephalas as if within a parenthetical afterthought, this remains only one of those terribly inventive, easy fables.)