Aesop's Fables: Phaedrus
Book III - XIX. Aesopus Respondet Garrulo (Perry
Aesopus domino solus cum esset familia,
parare cenam iussus est maturius.
Ignem ergo quaerens aliquot lustrauit domus,
tandemque inuenit ubi lacernam accenderet,
tum circumeunti fuerat quod iter longius
effecit breuius: namque recta per forum
coepit redire. Et quidam e turba garrulus:
"Aesope, medio sole quid tu lumine?"
"Hominem" inquit "quaero." Et abiit festinans domum.
Hoc si molestus ille ad animum rettulit,
sensit profecto se hominem non uisum seni,
intempestiue qui occupato adluserit.
Esop and the Importunate Fellow (trans. C. Smart)
Esop (no other slave at hand)
Received himself his lord's command
An early supper to provide.
From house to house he therefore tried
To beg the favor of a light;
At length he hit upon the right.
But as when first he sallied out
He made his tour quite round about,
On his return he took a race
Directly, cross the market-place:
When thus a talkative buffoon,
" Esop, what means this light at noon ?'
He answer'd briefly, as he ran,
"Fellow, I'm looking for a man."
Now if this jackanapes had weighed
The true intent of what was said,
He'd found that Esop had no sense
Of manhood in impertinence.
Latin text from Phaedrus at The
Latin Library (Ad Fontes), English translations from The
Fables of Phaedrus Translated into English Verse by Christopher Smart
(London: 1913). Ben Perry, Babrius and Phaedrus (Loeb),
contains the Latin texts of Phaedrus, with a facing English translation, along
with a valuable appendix listing all the Aesop's fables attested in Greek and/or
in Latin. Invaluable.