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The Fables of Aesop by Joseph Jacobs

The Fables of Aesop

by Joseph Jacobs

Other authors: Richard Heighway (Illustrator)

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The Fables of Aesop by Joseph Jacobs

It is my understanding that Jacobs' main thesis concerning the fables of Aesop - that they were derived from and influenced by the animal fables of ancient India - has been discredited by more current scholarship. Interestingly enough, I recently came across some discussion of a possible connection to the Sumerian tradition, in Barbara Bader's introduction to Aesop & Company With Scenes From His Legendary Life.

However that may be (and I'm not sure I'm well enough informed to venture an opinion), Jacobs' notes on the eighty-two fables contained herein are still useful, even if one ignores the Indian "connection." As someone intending to read the two classical sources for "Aesop's" fables, Babrius and Phaedrus, Jacobs' work in tracing each selection back to one of these authors is most helpful, as is his history of their medieval transmission.

I'm not sure just how far I want to take my recent Aesop "project" - whether I want to go beyond Babrius and Phaedrus, and really get into the scholarship in the area. Still, the process of reading these many adaptations and retellings has given me some added insight, both into the adaptability of such stories, and into the transmission (or lack thereof) of ancient literature. That alone has made it worthwhile... ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Jul 15, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Joseph Jacobsprimary authorall editionscalculated
Heighway, RichardIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0805201386, Paperback)

A collection of more than three hundred classic children's fables includes ""The Lion and the Mouse,"" ""The Dog in the Manger,"" and ""The Tortoise and the Hare,"" and is accompanied by twenty-three paintings and line drawings.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:43 -0400)

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