As was the common practice with the gods of Olympus,Zeus and Hermes were visiting the world in disguise. One day they came to a village. At a thousand house sthey knocked,and a thousand times they were refused rest and food and drink. At last they arrived at a humble cottage,where the old couple Baucis and her husband Philemon lived. Poor but at peace with world,they made the best of what life could offer them ,and felt truly grateful to the gods above. When the two travellers entered the hut,the old couple were glad with lively happiness. They offered their guests their best seat,and immediately set about preparing dinner for them. With no small difficulty they made fire,brought in a fresh cabbage,cut a fat piece of their long kept meat and put them over the fire to cook.
The one single goose they were ready to kill for the visitors,but it was saved at the last minute by the guests. The dining bench was a makeshift ,poor and patched but the best they had. The table was supported by a brick. The feast was quite modest,eggs and wine and cot tage cheese,and a variety of newly pickedfruit. The old couple humbly waited on the visiting guests withsincere looks and eager goodwill. Moved at the hospitality ofthe house,the gods told their true identity. "We are gods",saidZeus. "While the neigh bour hood pays the penalty for itswickedness you shall be free from misfortune. Onkaparinga
Baucis and Philemon, Greek mythology
Coming along with us". When they were near the top of the hill,Bancis and Phile mon looked back and saw all the village below covered by amarsh ,and that among the general ruin and destruction their old cottage alone survived,changed into a grand temple. At their request they were made the guardians of the sacred place of Zeus. When their span of worldly life came to an end they were turned into an ash and linden,standing side by side in front of the temple.