Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Aries et Taurus (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 79 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:

Ariēs quīdam inter lānigerōs erat, tantā cornuum et capitis firmitāte ut cēterōs ariētēs statim facileque superāret. Quārē cum nullum amplius ariētem invenīret quī occursantī sibi audēret obsistere, crēbrīs ēlātus victōriīs taurum ausus est ad certāmen prōvocāre. Sed prīmō congressū, cum in taurīnam frontem ariētāsset, tam ātrōcī ictū repercussus est ut ferē moriēns haec dīceret: Stultus ego quid ēgī? cūr tam potentem adversārium ausus sum lacessere, cui mē imparem creāvit nātūra? Fābula indicat cum potentiōribus nōn esse dēcertandum.



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):

Áries quidam inter lanígeros erat, tanta córnuum et cápitis firmitáte ut céteros ariétes statim faciléque superáret. Quare cum nullum ámplius ariétem inveníret qui occursánti sibi audéret obsístere, crebris elátus victóriis taurum ausus est ad certámen provocáre. Sed primo congréssu, cum in taurínam frontem arietásset, tam atróci ictu repercússus est ut fere móriens haec díceret: "Stultus ego quid egi? Cur tam poténtem adversárium ausus sum lacéssere, cui me ímparem creávit natúra?" Fábula índicat cum potentióribus non esse decertándum.



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:

Aries quidam
inter lanigeros erat,
tanta cornuum et capitis firmitate
ut ceteros arietes
statim facileque superaret.
Quare
cum nullum amplius arietem
inveniret
qui
occursanti sibi auderet obsistere,
crebris elatus victoriis
taurum ausus est
ad certamen provocare.
Sed primo congressu,
cum in taurinam frontem arietasset,
tam atroci ictu repercussus est
ut fere moriens haec diceret:
"Stultus ego quid egi?
Cur tam potentem adversarium
ausus sum lacessere,
cui me imparem creavit natura?"
Fabula indicat
cum potentioribus
non esse decertandum.




IMAGE. Here is an illustration for the story (image source) showing a bull that would be more than a match for a ram:




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