Friday, February 12, 2010

Ovis et Pastor (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 83 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:

Ovis convīciābātur pastōrī, quod nōn contentus lacte, quod in ūsum suum fīliōrumque ab eā mulgēbat, īnsuper eam vellere dēnūdāret. Tunc pastor īrātus fīlium eius trahēbat ad mortem. Ecquid, inquit ovis, pēius mihi facere potēs? Ut tē, inquit pastor, occīdam et lupīs canibusque proiiciam dēvorandam: siluit ovis māiōra adhuc mala formīdāns. Haec fābula indicat, nōn dēbēre hominēs in Deum excandescere, sī dīvitiās, sī fīliōs ipsīs permittat auferrī, cum etiam māiōra et vīventibus et mortuīs possit inferre supplicia.



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):

Ovis conviciabátur pastóri, quod non conténtus lacte, quod in usum suum filiorúmque ab ea mulgébat, ínsuper eam véllere denudáret. Tunc pastor irátus fílium eius trahébat ad mortem. "Ecquid (inquit ovis) peius mihi fácere potes?" "Ut te (inquit pastor) occídam et lupis canibúsque proiíciam devorándam." Síluit ovis maióra adhuc mala formídans. Haec fábula índicat non debére hómines in Deum excandéscere, si divítias, si fílios ipsis permíttat auférri, cum étiam maióra et vivéntibus et mórtuis possit inférre supplícia.



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:

Ovis conviciabatur pastori,
quod non contentus lacte,
quod in usum suum filiorumque
ab ea mulgebat,
insuper eam vellere denudaret.
Tunc pastor iratus
filium eius trahebat ad mortem.
"Ecquid (inquit ovis)
peius mihi facere potes?"
"Ut te (inquit pastor) occidam
et lupis canibusque
proiiciam devorendam."
Siluit ovis
maiora adhuc mala formidans.
Haec fabula indicat
non debere homines
in Deum excandescere,
si divitias, si filios
ipsis permittat auferri,
cum etiam maiora
et viventibus et mortuis
possit inferre supplicia.




IMAGE. Here is an illustration for the story (image source), showing an unhappy sheep:




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