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Encyclopedia > Aesop

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Aesop, as conceived by Diego Velázquez
Aesop, as conceived by Diego Velázquez
Aesop, as depicted in the Nuremberg Chronicle by Hartmann Schedel in 1493. Note the alternate spelling "Esopus", with a long s, and the truncated 'p'.
Aesop, as depicted in the Nuremberg Chronicle by Hartmann Schedel in 1493. Note the alternate spelling "Esopus", with a long s, and the truncated 'p'.

Aesop (also spelled Æsop, from the Greek ΑἴσωποςAisōpos), known only for the genre of fables ascribed to him, was by tradition a slave (δούλος) who was a contemporary of Croesus and Peisistratus in the mid-sixth century BC in ancient Greece. The various collections that go under the rubric "Aesop's Fables" are still taught as moral lessons and used as subjects for various entertainments, especially children's plays and cartoons. Most of what are known as Aesopic fables is a compilation of tales from various sources, many of which originated with authors who lived long before Aesop. Aesop himself is said to have composed many fables, which were passed down by oral tradition. Socrates was thought to have spent his time turning Aesop’s fables into verse while he was in prison. Demetrius Phalereus, another Greek philosopher, made the first collection of these fables around 300 BC. This was later translated into Latin by Phaedrus, a slave himself, around 25 BC. The fables from these two collections were soon brought together and were eventually retranslated into Greek by Babrius around A.D. 230. Many additional fables were included, and the collection was in turn translated to Arabic and Hebrew, further enriched by additional fables from these cultures. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 301 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (659 × 1312 pixel, file size: 158 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Diego Velasquez, Aesop Museo del Prado, Madrid (179 x 94 cm, c. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 301 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (659 × 1312 pixel, file size: 158 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Diego Velasquez, Aesop Museo del Prado, Madrid (179 x 94 cm, c. ... For others named Velázquez, see Velazquez (disambiguation). ... Download high resolution version (1628x1604, 1004 KB)Depiction of Aesop from the Nuremberg Chronicle. ... Download high resolution version (1628x1604, 1004 KB)Depiction of Aesop from the Nuremberg Chronicle. ... Page depicting Constantinople with added hand-colouring The Nuremberg Chronicle, written in Latin and German versions by Hartmann Schedel, is one of the best documented early printed books and, appearing in 1493, is an incunabulum. ... Hartmann Schedel, a german humanist and historian (* February 13, 1440 in Nuremberg, † November 28, 1514 in Nuremberg), was one of the first cartographers to make use of the printing press. ... 1493 was a common year starting on Sunday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... An italicized long s used in the word Congress in the United States Bill of Rights. ... Aesop may refer to: Acronym for Association of European Schools of Planning Aesop and Aesops Fables Roman tragedian Clodius Aesopus Rapper Aesop Rock Category: ... Employee-owned corporations are generally a model of ownership of a corporation where the corporation is owned in part or whole by the employees who work for it. ... For other uses, see Fable (disambiguation). ... Funerary stele: the slave represented as a shorter person, beside the mistress, Munich Glyptothek Slavery was an essential component of the development of Ancient Greece throughout its history. ... Croesus Croesus (IPA pronunciation: , CREE-sus) was the king of Lydia from 560/561 BC until his defeat by the Persians in about 547 BC. The English name Croesus come from the Latin transliteration of the Greek , in Arabic and Persian قارون, Qârun. ... Peisistratos or Peisistratus (Greek: )[1] (ca. ... (2nd millennium BC - 1st millennium BC - 1st millennium) The 6th century BC started on January 1, 600 BC and ended on December 31, 501 BC. // Monument 1, an Olmec colossal head at La Venta The 5th and 6th centuries BC were a time of empires, but more importantly, a time... The term ancient Greece refers to the periods of Greek history in Classical Antiquity, lasting ca. ... Aesop, as depicted in the Nuremberg Chronicle by Hartmann Schedel. ... For other uses, see Cartoon (disambiguation). ... This page is about the Classical Greek philosopher. ... Centuries: 4th century BC - 3rd century BC - 2nd century BC Decades: 350s BC 340s BC 330s BC 320s BC 310s BC - 300s BC - 290s BC 280s BC 270s BC 260s BC 250s BC Years: 305 BC 304 BC 303 BC 302 BC 301 BC - 300 BC - 299 BC 298 BC... For other uses, see Latin (disambiguation). ... Phaedrus, ¹ (15 B.C. – AD 50), Roman fabulist, was by birth a Macedonian and lived in the reigns of Augustus, Tiberius, Gaius and Claudius. ... Centuries: 2nd century BC - 1st century BC - 1st century Decades: 70s BC 60s BC 50s BC 40s BC 30s BC - 20s BC - 10s BC 0s 10s 20s 30s Years: 30 BC 29 BC 28 BC 27 BC 26 BC 25 BC 24 BC 23 BC 22 BC 21 BC 20...

Contents

Life

The place of Aesop's birth was and still is disputed: Thrace, Phrygia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Samos, Athens, Sardis and Amorium all claimed the honour. It has been argued by modern writers that he may have been of African origin: the scholar Richard Lobban has argued that his name is likely derived from "Aethiopian", a word used by the Greeks to refer mostly to dark skinned people of the African interior. He continues by pointing out that the stories are populated by animals present in Africa, many of the creatures being quite foreign to Greece and Europe.[1] Thracian Tomb of Kazanlak  Thrace (Bulgarian: , Greek: , Attic Greek: ThrāíkÄ“ or ThrēíkÄ“, Latin: , Turkish: ) is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. ... In antiquity, Phrygia (Greek: ) was a kingdom in the west central part of the Anatolia. ... Samos (Greek: Σάμος) is a Greek island in the Eastern Aegean sea, located between the island of Chios to the North and the archipelagic complex of the Dodecanese to the South and in particular the island of Patmos and off the coast of Turkey, on what was formerly known as Ionia. ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... A recent view of the ceremonial court of the thermae–gymnasium complex in Sardis, dated to 211—212 AD Sardis, also Sardes (Lydian: Sfard, Greek: Σάρδεις, Persian: Sparda), modern Sart in the Manisa province of Turkey, was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, the seat of a proconsul under... Amorium Höyük (mound) as seen from the minaret of the village of Hisarköy The site John Kallos, Bishop of Amorion Amorium, is an ancient city in Turkey that dates back at least to the Hellenistic Period in Anatolia and that had acquired particular historical significance, in several... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ...


The life of Aesop himself is shrouded in obscurity. He is said to have lived as a slave in Samos around 550 B.C. An ancient account of his life is found in The book of Xanthus the Philosopher and His Slave Aesop. According to the sparse information gathered about him from references to him in several Greek works (he was mentioned by Aristophanes, Plato, Xenophon and Aristotle), Aesop was a slave for someone called Xanthus (Ξανθος), who resided on the island of Samos. Aesop must have been freed, for he conducted the public defense of a certain Samian demagogue (Aristotle, Rhetoric, ii. 20). He subsequently lived at the court of Croesus, where he met Solon, and dined in the company of the Seven Sages of Greece with Periander at Corinth. During the reign of Peisistratus he was said to have visited Athens, where he told the fable of The Frogs Who Desired a King to dissuade the citizens from attempting to depose Peisistratus for another ruler. A contrary story, however, said that Aesop spoke up for the common people against tyranny through his fables, which incensed Peisistratus, who was against free speech. This article is about the 5-4th century BC dramatist. ... For other uses, see Plato (disambiguation). ... Xenophon, Greek historian Xenophon (In Greek , ca. ... For other uses, see Aristotle (disambiguation). ... Samos (Greek: Σάμος) is a Greek island in the Eastern Aegean sea, located between the island of Chios to the North and the archipelagic complex of the Dodecanese to the South and in particular the island of Patmos and off the coast of Turkey, on what was formerly known as Ionia. ... Croesus Croesus (IPA pronunciation: , CREE-sus) was the king of Lydia from 560/561 BC until his defeat by the Persians in about 547 BC. The English name Croesus come from the Latin transliteration of the Greek , in Arabic and Persian قارون, Qârun. ... For other uses, see Solon (disambiguation). ... The Seven Sages (of Greece) (c. ... Periander Periander (Greek: Περίανδρος) was the second tyrant of Corinth, Greece in the 7th century BC. He was the son of the first tyrant, Cypselus. ... Corinth, or Korinth (Greek: Κόρινθος, Kórinthos; see also List of traditional Greek place names) is a Greek city-state, on the Isthmus of Corinth, the narrow stretch of land that joins the Peloponnesus to the mainland of Greece. ... Peisistratos or Peisistratus (Greek: )[1] (ca. ... This article is about the capital of Greece. ... The Frogs Who Desired a King is a fable ascribed to the slave Aesop. ... Freedom of speech is the right to freely say what one pleases, as well as the related right to hear what others have stated. ...


According to the historian Herodotus, Aesop met with a violent death at the hands of the inhabitants of Delphi, though the cause was not stated. Various suggestions were made by later writers, such as his insulting sarcasms, the embezzlement of money entrusted to him by Croesus for distribution at Delphi, and his alleged sacrilege of a silver cup. A pestilence that ensued was blamed on his execution, and the Delphians declared their willingness to make compensation, which, in default of a nearer connection, was claimed by Iadmon (Ιάδμων), grandson of Aesop's former master. Herodotus of Halicarnassus (Greek: HÄ“ródotos Halikarnāsseús) was a Greek historian who lived in the 5th century BC (ca. ... For other uses, see Delphi (disambiguation). ... Croesus Croesus (IPA pronunciation: , CREE-sus) was the king of Lydia from 560/561 BC until his defeat by the Persians in about 547 BC. The English name Croesus come from the Latin transliteration of the Greek , in Arabic and Persian قارون, Qârun. ...


Popular stories surrounding Aesop were assembled in a vita prefixed to a collection of fables under his name, compiled by Maximus Planudes, a fourteenth-century monk. He was by tradition extremely ugly and deformed, which is the sole basis for making a grotesque marble figure in the Villa Albani, Rome, a "portrait of Aesop". This biography had actually existed a century before Planudes. It appeared in a thirteenth century manuscript found in Florence. However, according to another Greek historian Plutarch's account of the symposium of the Seven Sages, at which Aesop was a guest, there were many jests on his former servile status, but nothing derogatory was said about his personal appearance. Aesop's deformity was further disputed by the Athenians, who erected in his honour a noble statue by the sculptor Lysippus. Some suppose the sura, or "chapter," in the Qur'an titled Luqman to be referring to Aesop, a well-known figure in Arabia during the time of Muhammad. Vita or VITA can refer to any of a number of things: Vita (Latin for life) can also refer to a brief biography, often that of a saint (i. ... Maximus Planudes (c. ... Alessandro Albani (Urbino October 15, 1692–Rome December 11, 1779), of the distinguished family of Urbino that was descended from refugees from Albania when it fell to the Ottoman Turks in the 15th century, was a collector and patron of the arts, who built Villa Albani, 1760, to house his... For other uses, see Rome (disambiguation). ... This article is about the city in Italy. ... Mestrius Plutarchus (Greek: Πλούταρχος; 46 - 127), better known in English as Plutarch, was a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist. ... Lysippos was a Greek sculptor of the fourth century BC. Among the works attributed to him are Eros Stringing the Bow (various copies exist; the best is in the British Museum); Agias (known from a marble copy found and preserved in Delphi); Weary Hercules (originally placed in the Baths of... Sura (sometimes spelt Surah , plural Suwar ) is an Arabic term literally meaning something enclosed or surrounded by a fence or wall. ... The Qur’ān [1] (Arabic: , literally the recitation; also sometimes transliterated as Quran, Koran, or Al-Quran) is the central religious text of Islam. ... Surat Luqman (Luqman) is the 31st sura of the Quran with 34 ayat. ... The Arabian Peninsula The Arabian Peninsula is a mainly desert peninsula in Southwest Asia at the junction of Africa and Asia and an important part of the greater Middle East. ... Muhammad in a new genre of Islamic calligraphy started in the 17th century by Hafiz Osman. ...


Aesop was also briefly mentioned in the classic Egyptian myth, "The Girl and the Rose-Red Slippers", considered by many to be history's first Cinderella story. In the myth, the freed slave Rhodopis mentions that a slave named Aesop told her many entrancing stories and fables while they were slaves on the island of Samos. Aesop died afterward by execution. Gustave Dorés illustration for Cendrillon Cinderella (French: Cendrillon) is a popular fairy tale embodying a classic folk tale myth-element of unjust oppression/triumphant reward. ... Rhodopis is an Ancient Egyptian variant of Cinderella. ... Samos (Greek: Σάμος) is a Greek island in the Eastern Aegean sea, located between the island of Chios to the North and the archipelagic complex of the Dodecanese to the South and in particular the island of Patmos and off the coast of Turkey, on what was formerly known as Ionia. ...


Aesop's Fables

Main article: Aesop's Fables

Aesop's Fables or the collection of fables assembled as Aesopica refers to various collections of moralized fables credited to Aesop. "Aesop's Fables" has also become a blanket term for collections of brief fables, usually involving personified animals. The Fox and the Grapes (from which the idiom "sour grapes" is derived), The Tortoise and the Hare, The North Wind and the Sun, The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing, and The Shepherd Boy and the Wolf (also known as The Boy Who Cried Wolf) are well-known throughout the world. Aesop, as depicted in the Nuremberg Chronicle by Hartmann Schedel. ... For other uses, see Fable (disambiguation). ... A blanket term is a word or phrase that is used to describe multiple groups of related things. ... The Fox and the Grapes is a fable attributed to Aesop. ... An idiom is an expression (i. ... The Tortoise and the Hare, illustrated by Milo Winter in a 1919 Aesop anthology The Tortoise and the Hare, illustrated in a 1921 story anthology The Tortoise and the Hare is a fable attributed to Aesop. ... The North Wind and the Sun is a fable attributed to Aesop. ... The Wolf in Sheeps Clothing is a fable ascribed to Aesop. ... The Boy Who Cried Wolf, illustrated by Milo Winter in a 1919 Aesop anthology For other uses, see Cry Wolf (disambiguation). ...


French poet Jean de La Fontaine adapted many of the fables. Engraving by Étienne-Jehandier Desrochers Jean de La Fontaine (July 8, 1621 – April 13, 1695) was the most famous French fabulist and probably the most widely read French poet of the 17th century. ...


Russian writers Leo Tolstoy and Ivan Krylov wrote free adaptations of some of his fables. Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy(Lyof, Lyoff) (September 9 [O.S. August 28] 1828 – November 20 [O.S. November 7] 1910) (Russian: , IPA:  ), commonly referred to in English as Leo Tolstoy, was a Russian writer – novelist, essayist, dramatist and philosopher – as well as pacifist Christian anarchist and educational reformer. ... Ivan Andreyevich Krylov (Иван Андреевич Крылов in Russian) (February 13, 1769 - November 21, 1844) was a famous Russian fabulist. ...


Sources

  • Caxton, William, 1484. The history and fables of Aesop, Westminster. Modern reprint edited by Robert T. Lenaghan (Harvard University Press: Cambridge, 1967).
  • Anthony, Mayvis, 2006. "The Legendary Life and Fables of Aesop", Mayant Press
    • Caxton's famous Epilogue to the Fables, dated March 26, 1484
  • Bentley, Richard, 1697. Dissertation upon the Epistles of Phalaris... and the Fables of Æsop. London.
  • Compton, Todd, Victim of the Muses: Poet as Scapegoat, Warrior and Hero in Greco-Roman and Indo-European Myth and History. Washington, D.C.: Center for Hellenic Studies/Harvard University Press, 2006, pp. 19-40.
  • Jacobs, Joseph, 1889. The Fables of Aesop: Selected, Told Anew, and Their History Traced, as first printed by William Caxton, 1484, from his French translation
    • i. A short history of the Aesopic fable
    • ii. The Fables of Aesop
  • Handford, S. A., 1954. Fables of Aesop. New York: Penguin.
  • Holzberg, N., 2002. The Ancient Fable: An Introduction. Trans. by C. Jackson-Holzberg. Bloomington, IN.
  • Nagy, Gregory. The Best of the Achaeans: Concepts of the Hero in Archaic Greek Poetry. The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1979, pp. 280-90 in print edition.
  • Perry, Ben E. (editor), 1965. Babrius and Phaedrus, (Loeb Classical Library) Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1965. English translations of 143 Greek verse fables by Babrius, 126 Latin verse fables by Phaedrus, 328 Greek fables not extant in Babrius, and 128 Latin fables not extant in Phaedrus (including some medieval materials) for a total of 725 fables.
  • Temple, Olivia and Robert (translators), 1998. Aesop, The Complete Fables, New York: Penguin Classics. (ISBN 0-14-044649-4)
  • Wiechers, A. Aesop in Delphi. Meisenheim am Glam 1961.
    • Bryn Mawr Classical Review, with Aesop bibliography
  1. ^ Lobban, Richard. "Aesop." Historical dictionary of ancient and medieval Nubia. Scarecrow Press, c2004

“Caxton” redirects here. ... March 26 is the 85th day of the year (86th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1484 was a leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar). ... Richard Bentley (January 27, 1662 – July 14, 1742) was an English theologian, Classics scholar and critic. ...

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Aegean civilization is a general term for the Bronze Age civilizations of Greece and the Aegean. ... The Minoan civilization was a bronze age civilization which arose on Crete, an island in the Aegean Sea. ... This article is about the Greek archaeological site. ... The Greek Dark Ages (ca. ... Parthenon This article is on the term Classical Greece itself. ... The Hellenistic period of Greek history was the period between the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BC and the annexation of the Greek peninsula and islands by Rome in 146 BC. Although the establishment of Roman rule did not break the continuity of Hellenistic society and culture, which... Roman Greece is the period of Greek history following the Roman victory over the Corinthians at the Battle of Corinth in 146 BC until the reestablishment of the city of Byzantium and the naming of the city by Emperor Constantine I as the capital of the Roman Empire (as Nova... This an alphabetical list of ancient Greeks. ... For the film of the same name, see Alexander the Great (1956 film). ... // Lycurgus Lycurgus (Greek: , Lukoûrgos; 700 BC?–630 BC) was the legendary lawgiver of Sparta, who established the military-oriented reformation of Spartan society in accordance with the Oracle of Apollo at Delphi. ... For the Shakespeare play, see Pericles, Prince of Tyre. ... Alcibiades Cleiniou Scambonides (Greek: ; English /ælsɪbaɪədi:z/; 450 BC–404 BC), also transliterated as Alkibiades, was a prominent Athenian statesman, orator, and general. ... Demosthenes (384–322 BC, Greek: Δημοσθένης, Dēmosthénēs) was a prominent Greek statesman and orator of ancient Athens. ... Themistocles (Greek: ; c. ... For other uses, see Archimedes (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Hippocrates (disambiguation). ... The Charioteer of Delphi, Delphi Archaeological Museum. ... The great kouros of Samos, the largest surviving kouros in Greece (Samos Archaeological Museum) The Ancient Greek word kouros meant a male youth, and is used by Homer to refer to young soldiers. ... The Lady of Auxerre, an example of a kore Kore (Greek - maiden), plural korai, is the name given to a type of ancient Greek sculpture of the archaic period, the female equivalent of a kouros. ... The Kritios boy belongs to the Late Archaic period and is considered the precursor to the later classical sculptures of athletes. ... The Doryphoros of Polykleitos The Doryphoros (Greek δορυφόρος, lit. ... Statue of Zeus The Greek sculptor Phidias created the 12-m (40-ft) tall Statue of Zeus in about 435 bc. ... Townley Discobolus, London, British Museum, with incorrectly restored head defying the balance of the figure The Discobolus of Myron (discus thrower Greek Δισκοβόλος του Μύρωνα) is a famous Roman marble copy of a lost Greek bronze original, completed during the zenith of the classical period between 460-450 BC. Myrons Discobolus was... -1... The statue of Laocoön and His Sons, also called the Laocoön Group, is a monumental marble sculpture, now in the Vatican Museums, Rome. ... Phidias Showing the Frieze of the Parthenon to his Friends by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema Phidias (or Pheidias) (in ancient Greek, ) (c. ... Death of Sarpedon, painted by Euphronios Euphronios was a Greek painter and potter of red-figure vases, active in Athens between 520 and 470 BC, the time of the Persian Wars. ... Polykleitos (or Polycletus, Polyklitos, Polycleitus, Polyclitus) the Elder was a Greek sculptor of the 5th century BC and the early 4th century BC. Next to famous Phidias, Myron and Kresilas he is the most important sculptor of the Classical antiquity. ... Minotaur, from a fountain in Athens, reflecting Myrons lost group of Theseus and the Minotaur (National Archeological Museum, Athens) Myron of Eleutherae (Greek Μύρων) working 480-444 BCE, was an Athenian sculptor from the mid-fifth century BCE.[1] He was born in Eleutherae on the borders of Boeotia and... Cavalry from the Parthenon Frieze, West II, British Museum. ... Praxiteles of Athens, the son of Cephisodotus, was the greatest of the Attic sculptors of the 4th century BC, who has left an imperishable mark on the history of art. ...

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