Monday, January 11, 2010

Mulus et Equus (Abstemius)

SOURCE: This fable comes from the first Hecatomythium ("100 Fables") of Laurentius Abstemius (Lorenzo Bevilaqua), a fifteenth-century Italian scholar. Of all the neo-Latin fable collections, Abstemius's was the most popular, and his stories are frequently anthologized in the 16th-, 17th- and 18th-century collections of Aesop's fables in Latin. Here is a 1499 edition of the book online. This is fable 47 in the collection, and it is very similar to the ancient fable of the donkey and the horse, Perry 565.

READ OUT LOUD. Choose which marked text you prefer to practice with - macrons or accent marks - and read the text out loud until you feel comfortable and confident. Then, try reading the unmarked text at the bottom. It should be easy for you after practicing with the marked texts. :-)


MACRONS. Here is the text with macrons:

Mūlus cōnspiciēns equum aureō frēnō ephippiōque īnsignem, et purpureīs opertum phalerīs, rumpēbātur invidiā, illum beātum reputāns, quī continuē optimīs vescerētur cibīs et decōrō amicīrētur ornātū, sē autem prae illō infēlīcem, quī clītellīs male dolātīs oppressus, quotīdiē maxima onera ferre cōgeret. At ubī vīdit equum pugnā redeuntem multīs affectum vulneribus prae illīus calamitāte sē fēlīcem appellābat, longē melius esse dīcēns quotīdiānō labōre dūrum victum quaeritāre et turpiter vestīrī, quam post opīmōs et dēlicātōs cibōs et tantōs ornātūs mortis adīre discrīmina. Haec fābula monet rēgibus et principibus minimē invidendum, quia dīvitiīs et opibus abundent, ut cum vītam eōrum longē plūribus perīculīs quam pauperum videāmus esse subiectam.



ACCENT MARKS. Here is the text with stress accents, plus some color-coding for the words of three or more syllables (blue: penultimate stress; red: antepenultimate stress):

Mulus conspíciens equum aúreo freno ephippióque insígnem, et purpúreis opértum pháleris, rumpebátur invídia, illum beátum réputans, qui contínue óptimis vescerétur cibis et decóro amicirétur ornátu, se autem prae illo infelícem, qui clitéllis male dolátis oppréssus, quotídie máxima ónera ferre cógeret. At ubi vidit equum pugna redeúntem multis afféctum vulnéribus prae illíus calamitáte se felícem appellábat, longe mélius esse dicens quotidiáno labóre durum victum quaeritáre et túrpiter vestíri, quam post opímos et delicátos cibos et tantos ornátus mortis adíre discrímina. Haec fábula monet régibus et princípibus mínime invidéndum, quia divítiis et ópibus abúndent, ut cum vitam eórum longe plúribus perículis quam paúperum videámus esse subiéctam.



UNMARKED TEXT. Here is the unmarked text - after practicing with the marked text that you prefer, you should not have any trouble with the unmarked text. I've put in some line breaks to show the natural pauses in the story:

Mulus
conspiciens equum
aureo freno ephippioque insignem,
et purpureis opertum phaleris,
rumpebatur invidia,
illum beatum reputans,
qui
continue optimis vesceretur cibis
et decoro amiciretur ornatu,
se autem prae illo infelicem,
qui clitellis male dolatis oppressus,
quotidie
maxima onera ferre cogeret.
At ubi vidit equum
pugna redeuntem
multis affectum vulneribus
prae illius calamitate
se felicem appellabat,
longe melius esse
dicens
quotidiano labore
durum victum quaeritare
et turpiter vestiri,
quam
post opimos et delicatos cibos
et tantos ornatus
mortis adire discrimina.
Haec fabula monet
regibus et principibus
minime invidendum,
quia divitiis et opibus abundent,
ut cum vitam eorum
longe pluribus periculis
quam pauperum
videamus esse subiectam.




IMAGE. Here is an illustration for the story (image source), taken from a 1521 edition of Aesop's fables, showing the proud horse before his comedown:




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