Monday, February 15, 2010

Asinus et Herus Ingratus (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 68 in the collection. Although this is about a donkey, it is very similar to the traditional Aesopic fable about the old dog and his master, Perry 532.

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:

Asinus, quī virō cuidam ingrātō multōs annōs inoffēnsō pede servīerat, semel, ut fit, dum sarcina pressus gravī et salebrōsā incēdit viā, sub onere ceciderat. Tum dominus implācābilis multīs verberibus surgere compellēbat, pigrum animal et ignāvum nuncupāns. At ille miser inter verbera haec sēcum dīcēbat: Infēlix ego quam ingrātum sortītus sum herum. Num quamvīs eī multō tempore sine offēnsā servīerim, tamen nōn hoc ūnum dēlictum tot meīs pristinīs beneficiīs compēnsat. Haec fābula in eōs conficta est, quī, beneficiōrum sibi collātōrum immemorēs, etiam minimam benefactōris suī in sē offēnsam ātrōcī poenā prōsequuntur.



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):

Ásinus, qui viro cuidam ingráto multos annos inoffénso pede servíerat, semel, ut fit, dum sárcina pressus gravi et salebrósa incédit via, sub ónere cecíderat. Tum dóminus implacábilis multis verbéribus súrgere compellébat, pigrum ánimal et ignávum núncupans. At ille miser inter vérbera haec secum dicébat: "Infélix ego quam ingrátum sortítus sum herum. Num quamvis ei multo témpore sine offénsa servíerim, tamen non hoc unum delíctum tot meis prístinis benefíciis compénsat." Haec fábula in eos confícta est, qui, beneficiórum sibi collatórum immémores, étiam mínimam benefactóris sui in se offénsam atróci poena prosequúntur.



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:

Asinus,
qui
viro cuidam ingrato
multos annos
inoffenso pede servierat,
semel, ut fit,
dum sarcina pressus gravi
et salebrosa incedit via,
sub onere ceciderat.
Tum dominus implacabilis
multis verberibus surgere compellebat,
pigrum animal et ignavum nuncupans.
At ille miser
inter verbera haec
secum dicebat:
"Infelix ego
quam ingratum sortitus sum herum.
Num quamvis ei
multo tempore sine offensa servierim,
tamen non hoc unum delictum
tot meis pristinis beneficiis compensat."
Haec fabula in eos conficta est,
qui,
beneficiorum sibi collatorum
immemores,
etiam minimam
benefactoris sui in se offensam
atroci poena prosequuntur.




IMAGE. Here is an illustration for the story (image source), showing a very sad donkey!




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