The Monthly Magazine of the Junior Heritage Club
. The Junior Heritage Club: The Heritage Press . NY ,
PZ7.L463 Mon 1946 (Fable Collection, Reinert-Alumni Memorial Library)
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Here is a pamphlet helping to market the Leaf and Lawson version of Aesop's Fables. It has three sections on, respectively, Aesop, Lawson, and Leaf. The writer of the first is G.M., while the second and third are autobiographical. The first essay is unfortunately inaccurate. The first man to make a real collection of Aesop's fables was a Roman named Babrius (4), and Babrius wrote in Latin. The writer claims, rightly I think, that a person going into a bookshop in 1946 for a book of Aesop's fables would most likely be given a translation either by Croxall or by Jacobs. The challenge which the editors gave Munro Leaf was to write a good twentieth century English without American slang or wisecracks. The first essay quotes one of two early reviewers: I think Munro Leaf has done an exceedingly commonplace and not even clever modern job of Aesop. Lawson's autobiographical essay takes him on a long journey through being in the army in World War I and making greeting cards with his wife to becoming a book illustrator. He closes with his credo that children are reasoning human beings, with at least as much good sense, humor and taste as grown-ups, and probably more. Leaf's story took him, for example, to Grammar Can Be Fun. The only person Leaf is aware of who did not like Ferdinand the Bull was Adolph Hitler!