Monday, February 4, 2013

Latin Proverbs and Fables Round-Up: February 4

Here is a round-up of today's proverbs and fables - and for previous posts, check out the Bestiaria Latina Blog archives. In addition to a free PDF copy of Brevissima: 1001 Tiny Latin Poems, you can also get a free PDF copy of Mille Fabulae et Una: 1001 Aesop's Fables in Latin. If you prefer the heft of a book in your hand, you can get the books in printed form from

HODIE (Roman Calendar): pridie Nonas Februarias.

MYTHS and LEGENDS: The art image for today's legend shows The Choice of Heracles; you can also see the legends for the current week listed together here.


3-WORD MOTTOES: Today's 3-word motto is Grata sume manu (English: Take things with a grateful hand).

3-WORD PROVERBS: Today's 3-word proverb is Cedant arma legibus (English: Let weapons yield to the laws ... an apt saying for the current national debate!).

RHYMING PROVERBS: Today's proverb with rhyme is: Omnia Mors tollit, quam nulla potentia mollit (English: Death, which no power can mollify, takes away everything).

VULGATE VERSES: Today's verse is Dignus est operarius mercede sua (Luke 10:7). For a translation, check out the polyglot Bible, in English, Hebrew, Latin and Greek, at the Sacred Texts Archive online.

ELIZABETHAN PROVERBS: Here is today's proverb commentary, this time by Taverner: Ne quaere mollia, ne tibi contingant dura: Seke not softe thinges lest hard thinges happen unto the. It is commonly sene, that they which unmeasurablie seke pleasures, do fall, ere they be ware, into bitter and harde grevaunces.

BREVISSIMA: The distich poster for today is De Bono et Malo. Click here for a full-sized view; the poem has a vocabulary list and an English translation, too.

And here is today's proverbial lolcat:


FABULAE FACILES: The fable from the Fabulae Faciles widget is Platanus et Viatores, the story of a tree who doesn't get any respect (this fable has a vocabulary list).

MILLE FABULAE: The fable from the Mille Fabulae et Una widget is Venator Meticulosus, the story of a hunter who is not ready to face the lion after all.

Leo et Venator Meticulosus

GreekLOLz - and Latin and English, too. Below is one of my GreekLOLz; for the Latin and English versions of the graphic, see the blog post: Ἀγεωμέτρητος μηδεὶς εἰσίτω. Geometriae ignarus nullus ingrediatur. Let no one enter who is ignorant of geometry.


Ulrich said...

Wow! I remember enough Latin and Bible verses to connect one with the other in today's quote from the Vulgata. I wonder if those who fight the minimum wage know their Luke...

Laura Gibbs said...

The vocabulary of wages and salary in the ancient world is a really fascinating topic, exactly because the idea of paying laborers (i.e. having to pay them since they were not slaves) is something that was not the norm in the slave societies of ancient Greece and Rome.

Ulrich said...

Fascinating indeed--I never made the connection. Especially in light of the fact that the Old Testament definitely accepts slavery--if I'm not mistaken, whenever modern translations refer to "your servant", e.g. in Leviticus, it should read "your slave." Or in the 10th commandment, where we're told not to covet your neighbor's servant, which makes no sense in the list of personal property items in which it occurs, but makes eminent sense if we substitute "slave." Jesus, as usual, was onto something...

Ulrich said...

I'm re-reading this and realize that my last sentence could be misunderstood. I'm referring to Jesus as he appears in the gospels, the friend of the down-trodden with a visceral hatred of the rich, who insisted that the spirit of the law is more important than the letter--just about the opposite of what the church has made of him.