Thursday, November 5, 2009

Round-Up: November 5

Here is a round-up of today's blog posts - and for previous posts, check out the Bestiaria Latina Blog archives. You can keep up with the latest posts by using the RSS feed, or you might prefer to subscribe by email.

HODIE: Nonae Novembres, the Nones of November. You can add a Roman calendar as a widget in your blog or webpage, or display it as a Google Calendar: here's how.

TODAY'S POEM: Here is today's little poem, from the Poetry Widget. Today's lines are the moral from one of the iambic fables by Phaedrus, the story of the donkey who insulted the boar. You can find the vocabulary for the entire poem at
Plerumque stulti, risum dum captant levem,
gravi destringunt alios contumelia,
et sibi nocivum concitant periculum.
English: "Often people who are foolish, when they want to make a light-hearted joke, insult other people with a serious affront and thus stir up dangerous trouble for themselves." The risqué humor of this fable results in it often being omitted from Aesopic collections, especially from collections intended for young people. The moral, however, works fine on its own - it's a dangerous business to insult someone, after all, even as a joke!


Vita Caesaris: You can see my IVLIVS CAESAR feed with a sentence from Plutarch's Life of Caesar each day in Greek, Latin and English. Today's Latin portion reports Cato's disgust with Caesar's use of marriage as a political tool: Neque multo post ipse Calpurniam Pisonis filiam duxit, eique consulatum in sequentem annum confecit, maxime tum Catone uociferante et testante ferendos non esse qui nuptiis principatum prostituant et mulierum causa prouincias copiasque mutuo sibi tradant.

Proverbiis Pipilo: You can see my Proverbia feed of Latin proverbs which I "tweet" while I am online each day (in English, too). Here's one from today: Amor et melle et felle est fecundissimus (English: Love is extremely abounding in both honey and bile… although the Latin word-play of melle-felle is lost, alas).


You can get access to all the proverb of the day scripts (also available as random proverb scripts) at the website.

Audio Latin Proverb of the Day: Today's audio Latin proverb is Quasi nix tabescit dies (English: Like snow, the day melts away). To read a brief essay about this proverb and to listen to the audio, visit the Latin Via Proverbs blog.

Maxims of Publilius Syrus: Today's proverb from Publilius Syrus is: Reus innocens fortunam, non testem timet. (English: When an innocent man is accused, he fears no witness, only chance… and, unfortunately - so to speak! - chance does play a role in the judicial process).

Rhyming Proverbs: Today's proverb in Leonine verse form is: Audi doctrinam, si vis vitare ruinam (English: Listen to your lessons if you want to avoid destruction - a fine bit of rhyme for both students and teachers!).

Proverbs of Polydorus: Today's proverb from Polydorus is: Dei facientes adiuvant. (English: The gods help those who are doers - something like the notion of "God helps them that help themselves").

Proverbium Perbreve of the Day: Today's two-word proverb is: Victrix patientia (English: Patience is the victor - although the Latin is especially charming with the feminine victrix to go with the feminine noun patientia).

Proverbium Breve of the Day: Today's three-word proverb is: Musica pellit curas (English: Music drives away worries - and remember, of course, that in Latin, musica is a gift of the Muses!).

Vulgate Verse of the Day: Today's verse is Benedicite maledicentibus vobis (Luke 6:28). For a translation, check out the polyglot Bible, in English, Hebrew, Latin and Greek, at the Sacred Texts Archive online.

Latin Animal Proverb of the Day: Today's animal proverb is Non oportet in urbe nutrire leonem (English: You shouldn't raise a lion in the city - which is good advice both literally AND metaphorically).

Latin Animal Proverb of the Day from Erasmus: Today's animal proverb is Pro perca scorpium (English: In place of a fish, a scorpion; from Adagia 2.6.6 - which, needless to say, is not a very pleasant surprise!).

Proper Name Proverb of the Day from Erasmus: Today's proper name proverb is Deo Fortunaeque committo (English: I put my trust in God and Fortune; from Adagia 3.8.96).

Greek Proverb of the Day: Today's proverb is Ῥόδον παρελθὼν μηκέτι ζήτει πάλιν (English: The rose, after it has faded, you should not seek again… and I cannot help but see an inadvertent pun here, as if Sarah Palin (πάλιν) should just put her political ambitions aside and not try to revive them, ha ha).


Ictibus Felicibus: Today's fable with macrons and accent marks is Puer Mendax, the famous story of the boy who cried "Wolf!"

Fable of the Day: Today's fable of the day from Barlow is DE SENE ET MORTE, the marvelous story of death, an old man - and the old man's surprising will to live! Here is an illustration for the story drawn by Francis Barlow:

Aesop's Fables in Latin now available at

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