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Appendix 19. Scrofa et Lupus


Parallels: For parallel versions, see Perry 547.


Premente partu scrofa cum gemeret iacens.

Accurrit lupus et obstetricis partibus

se posse fungi dixit, promittens opem.

Quae vero nosset pectoris fraudem improbi,

suspectum officium repudiavit malefici

et "Satis est" inquit "si recedis longius."

Quodsi perfidiae se commisisset lupi,

pari dolore fata deflesset sua.


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


Cum scrofa iacens gemeret,

premente partu,

lupus accurrit, promittens opem,

et dixit se posse fungi obstetricis partibus.

Scrofa vero nosset fraudem improbi pectoris,

repudiavit suspectum officium malefici

et inquit: "Satis est si recedis longius."

Quodsi commisisset se perfidiae lupi,

deflesset sua fata pari dolore.


Here is the poem with meter marks:


Premen~te par~tu scro~fa cum ~ gem'ret ~ iacens.

Accur~rit lup's ~ et ob~stetri~cis par~tibus

se pos~se fun~gi dix~it, pro~mittens ~ opem.

Quae ve~ro nos~set pec~toris ~ fraud(em) im~probi,

suspec~t(um) offic~jum re~pudja~vit mal'fici

et "Sat's ~ est" in~quit "si ~ rece~dis lon~gius."

Quodsi ~ perfid~jae se ~ commi~sisset ~ lupi,

pari ~ dolo~re fa~ta de~flesset ~ sua.




When a breeding sow was lying on the ground, groaning as her delivery drew near, the wolf came up, offering help, and said that he could play the role of the midwife. The sow actually recognized the trick in the wolf's wicked mind; she rejected the evildoer's suspicious favor and said: "It is enough for me if you will move farther away." But if the sow had put her trust in the wolf's treachery, she would have lamented her fate with a commensurate pain.


[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 from an early printed edition; click on the image for a larger view.




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