Saturday, January 2, 2010

Vulpes et Aquila (Nequam)

SOURCE: The fables of the medieval scholar and poet Alexander Nequam are available in several different editions at GoogleBooks. This is poem 23 in Nequam. For parallel versions, see Perry 1. You can find the word list for this fable online at NoDictionaries.com and use it interactively.

READ OUT LOUD. Choose which marked text you prefer to practice with - macrons in verse form, or macrons in prose order, or accent marks in prose order, or focusing on the meter. You will find materials for all of these options below. :-)


VERSE MACRONS. Here is the verse text with macrons:

In nīdum vulpis catulōs Iovis armiger ōlim
sustulit ut pullōs pasceret inde suōs.
Flēns aquilam sequitur vulpes, reddīque precātur
omnibus ista modīs; omnibus ille negat.
Nīl precibus faciēns, solitās dēcurrit ad artēs
et nīdō stipulam lignaque supposuit.
Addidit hīs ignem; flammīs fūmōque coēgit,
cauta, sibī reddī quod prece nōn potuit.
Sīc sua vir repetat vel vī vel quālibet arte,
cum nequeunt humilēs pondus habēre precēs!


PROSE MACRONS. Here is the same text with macrons written out in prose word order:

Ōlim armiger Iovis vulpis catulōs sustulit in nīdum ut inde pullōs suōs pasceret. Vulpes, flēns, aquilam sequitur , et modīs omnibus ista reddī precātur ; ille omnibus negat. Precibus nīl faciēns, ad artēs solitās dēcurrit et stipulam lignaque nīdō supposuit. Hīs ignem addidit; flammīs fūmōque, cauta, coēgit sibī reddī quod prece nōn potuit. Sīc vir vel vī vel quālibet arte sua repetat cum precēs humilēs pondus habēre nequeunt!


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

Olim ármiger Iovis vulpis cátulos sústulit in nidum ut inde pullos suos pásceret. Vulpes, flens, áquilam séquitur, et modis ómnibus ista reddi precátur ; ille ómnibus negat. Précibus nil fáciens, ad artes sólitas decúrrit et stípulam lignáque nido suppósuit. His ignem áddidit; flammis fumóque, cauta, coégit sibi reddi quod prece non pótuit. Sic vir vel vi vel quálibet arte sua répetat cum preces húmiles pondus habére néqueunt!



ELEGIAC COUPLET METER. Below I have used an interpunct dot · to indicate the metrical elements in each line, and a double line || to indicate the hemistichs of the pentameter line.

In nī·dum vul·pis catu·lōs Iovis· armiger· ōlim
sustulit· ut pul·lōs || pasceret· inde su·ōs.
Flēns aqui·lam sequi·tur vul·pes, red·dīque pre·cātur
omnibus· ista mo·dīs; || omnibus· ille ne·gat.
Nīl preci·bus faci·ēns, soli·tās dē·currit ad· artēs
et nī·dō stipu·lam || lignaque· supposu·it.
Addidit· hīs ig·nem; flam·mīs fū·mōque co·ēgit,
cauta, si·bī red·dī || quod prece· nōn potu·it.
Sīc sua· vir repe·tat vel· vī vel· quālibet· arte,
cum neque·unt humi·lēs || pondus ha·bēre pre·cēs!


IMAGE. Here's an illustration for the fable (image source) by Francis Barlow:


What follows is an unmarked version of the prose rendering to faciliate word searches:
Olim armiger Iovis vulpis catulos sustulit in nidum ut inde pullos suos pasceret. Vulpes, flens, aquilam sequitur , et modis omnibus ista reddi precatur ; ille omnibus negat. Precibus nil faciens, ad artes solitas decurrit et stipulam lignaque nido supposuit. His ignem addidit; flammis fumoque, cauta, coegit sibi reddi quod prece non potuit. Sic vir vel vi vel qualibet arte sua repetat cum preces humiles pondus habere nequeunt!

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