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Page history last edited by Laura Gibbs 11 years, 2 months ago


HOME | Barlow's Aesop: Previous Page - Next Page




ONLINE FORUM: At the Aesopus Ning Forum, you can ask questions about this fable. You will also  find links there to additional learning materials to help you in reading the Latin (vocabulary, grammar commentary, simplified version, quizzes, macrons, etc.).


Columbae olim cum Milvo haud incruentum gerebant bellum et, ut Milvum penitus expugnarent, delegerunt sibi regem Accipitrem. Qui rex factus, hostem agit, non regem. Nam, non segnius ac Milvus, Columbas rapit laniatque. Paenitebat igitur Columbas incepti, satius fuisse putantes bella pati Milvi quam Accipitris subire tyrannidem.


Translation: Once upon a time, the doves were waging a war with the Kite, not lacking in bloodshed, and in order to finally defeat the Kite they chose as their king the Hawk. When the Hawk was made king, he played the role of enemy, not king. For with no less zeal than the Kite, the Hawk seized the Doves and butchered them. As a result, the Doves regretted what they had begun, thinking that it had been more than enough to suffer the Kite's wars rather than to submit to the Hawk's tyranny.


[This translation is meant as a help in understanding the story, not as a "crib" for the Latin. I have not hesitated to change the syntax to make it flow more smoothly in English, altering the verb tense consistently to narrative past tense, etc.]


The Moral of the Story:


Quamvis pauci

admodum sorte sua contenti vivunt,

nemo tamen

aut Fortunam aut Rationem

petulanti lacessat lingua;


nova sorte quaesita,

veterem rursus optavere;

ita Natura

sumus omnes comparati,

ut nosmet

nostri saepe consilii paeniteat.


Illustration: Here is an illustration for the fable of the doves, from an early edition of Steinhowel's Aesop.



Here is an illustration for the peacock fable, from this edition by the renowned artist Francis Barlow; click on the image for a larger view. Note that it does not match the Latin fable that appears on this page.


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