Of Their Traffic Notes from Utopia

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Utopia Of Their Traffic

The families in Utopia are made of people closely related to one another. Although the women marry out of their homes, the men, their children and grandchildren remain living in the same house. They are all obedient to the eldest relative whose understanding has not been weakened. The maximum number of families per city (not including the country around it) is six thousand. People can be moved from one family to the other if necessary to maintain the minimum number of people per family (ten). Also, families may be moved from one town to another if a certain town is overpopulated or under-populated. On a larger scale, if the number of inhabitants in the country falls, people may be called back from the colonies in order to inhabit it.

With respect to the families, the oldest man is called the 'governor'. It is the wives' duty to serve their husbands, the children's duties to serve their parents, and the young to serve the elder.

Topic Tracking: Values 2

Each city is divided into four sections, each with its own marketplace where the fathers go and take what they need from others, and supply to others what they have produced. People do not take more than they need because they know that there will be more supplies whenever they return, and they are never denied anything because there is plenty of everything.

Outside the towns, there are places allocated for killing animals. Slaves do this as the slaughtering of animals is thought to decrease human affection and pity. The sick are taken care of very well and are accommodated in well-equipped, well-staffed, public hospitals, away from the town centers, so that infectious diseases will not spread.

At dinnertime, the best of what is left in the market is distributed among the community halls, which are in the middle of every street. Each street consists of thirty houses, and is overlooked by a Philarch. At dinnertime, the families that each Philarch overlooks are called together by a trumpet, and dine together. The seating at dinner is specific: the men sit towards the wall, and the women sit on the other side. This is so that if any woman were to become sick or go into labor, she can quickly leave without disturbing anyone. Also, there is clean water and nurses near the women's side. The children sit with the nurses until they are fit for marriage, at which point they sit with the rest of the men and women. Every child is nursed by their mother, unless the mother is sick or dies, at which point the wife of the Philarch will find a volunteer to nurse the child.

The Philarch and his wife sit in the middle at the first table, with the two oldest men. They are honored and respected, and are served first. The chairs of the old are different than the chairs of the young. The old are always served food before the young. Thus, old men are greatly revered. Prior to dinner, the old men give some sort of lecture, which is short and not tedious. Music always accompanies supper, as do perfumes, fruits, and meats. Although this is the case in towns, in the country, each family eats at home.

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