Thursday, January 7, 2010

Rusticus et Ceres (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 2 in the collection.

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:

Impetrāvit ā Cerere rusticus quīdam ut trīticum absque aristīs nascerētur, nē metentium trītūrantiumque manus laederet. Quod ubī ināruit, ā minūtīs avibus dēpastum est. Tum rusticus, "Quam indigna (inquit) patior, quī parvae commoditātis causā ēmolumenta quam maxima perdidī." Fābula indicat parva incommoda māiōrī utilitāte pēnsanda.

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):

Impetrávit a Cérere rústicus quidam ut tríticum absque arístis nascerétur, ne meténtium triturantiúmque manus laéderet. Quod ubi ináruit, a minútis ávibus depástum est. Tum rústicus, "Quam indígna (inquit) pátior, qui parvae commoditátis causa emoluménta quam máxima pérdidi." Fábula índicat parva incómmoda maióri utilitáte pensánda.

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:

Impetravit a Cerere
rusticus quidam
ut triticum absque aristis nasceretur,
metentium triturantiumque manus
Quod ubi inaruit,
a minutis avibus depastum est.
Tum rusticus,
"Quam indigna (inquit) patior,
qui parvae commoditatis causa
emolumenta quam maxima perdidi."
Fabula indicat
parva incommoda
maiori utilitate pensanda.

IMAGE. Here is an illustration for the story (image source) showing the naturally prickly ears of wheat!

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