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Page history last edited by Laura Gibbs 15 years, 7 months ago


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Appendix 18. Gallus et Feles


Parallels: For parallel versions, see Perry 546.


Feles habebat gallus lecticarios.

Hunc gloriose vulpes ut vidit vehi,

sic est locuta: "Moneo praecaveas dolum;

istorum vultus namque si consideres,

praedam portare iudices, non sarcinam."

Postquam esurire coepit felum societas,

discerpsit dominum et fecit partes funeris.


Here is the poem in a more prose-like word order for easy reading:


Gallus habebat feles lecticarios.

Ut vulpes vidit

hunc gallum gloriose vehi,

sic locuta est:

"Moneo praecaveas dolum;

namque si consideres vultus istorum,


portare praedam, non sarcinam."

Postquam societas felum coepit esurire,

discerpsit dominum

et fecit partes funeris.


Here is the poem with meter marks:


Feles ~ habe~bat gal~lus lec~tica~rios.

Hunc glo~rio~se vul~pes ut ~ vidit ~ vehi,

sic est ~ locu~ta: "Mon'~o prae~cav'as ~ dolum;

isto~rum vul~tus nam~que si ~ consi~deres,

praedam ~ porta~re iu~dices, ~ non sar~cinam."

Postqu(am) e~suri~re coe~pit fe~lum soc~jetas,

discerp~sit dom'~n(um) et fe~cit par~tes fu~neris.




A rooster had cats as his litter bearers. When the fox saw the rooster being proudly carried about, she said to him: "I advise you to beware of treachery: for if you look into the faces of those cats, you will realize that they are not bearing a burden -- they are carting off loot!" Later, the pack of cats began to grow hungry, tore their master to pieces and divided his remains amongst themselves.


[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.]




Here is an illustration of a different "cat and rooster" fable from an early printed edition; click on the image for a larger view (if you are curious about the fable that goes with this story, visit aesopica.net).




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