Aesop's Fables: Phaedrus
Book IV - IX. Vulpis et Caper (Perry
Homo in periclum simul ac uenit callidus,
reperire effugium quaerit alterius malo.
Cum decidisset uulpes in puteum inscia
et altiore clauderetur margine,
deuenit hircus sitiens in eundem locum.
Simul rogauit, esset an dulcis liquor
et copiosus, illa fraudem moliens:
"Descende, amice; tanta bonitas est aquae,
uoluptas ut satiari non possit mea."
Immisit se barbatus. Tum uulpecula
euasit puteo, nixa celsis cornibus,
hircumque clauso liquit haerentem uado.
The Fox and the Goat (trans. C. Smart)
A crafty knave will make escape,
When once he gets into a scrape,
Still meditating self-defence,
At any other man's expense.
A Fox by some disaster fell
Into a deep and fenced well:
A thirsty Goat came down in haste,
And ask'd about the water's taste,
If it was plentiful and sweet ?
At which the Fox, in rank deceit,
" So great the solace of the run,
I thought I never should have done.
Be quick, my friend, your sorrows drown,"
This said, the silly Goat comes down.
The subtle Fox herself avails,
And by his horns the mound she scales,
And leaves the Goat in all the mire,
To gratify his heart's desire.
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.