A Selection of Fables from Florian and Other Authors
Graham, Elizabeth Susanna Davenport
. J. Hatchard and Son 187 Picadilly, . London
PQ1983.F6 E5 1837 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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It is rare to find Florian translated into English. In this small (3½ x 5½) pamphlet one finds twelve from Florian, three from Dodsley, and three Scraps from a Portfolio. Most of Florian's twelve are in my collections of outlines of his fables. Several are new to me. In Horse and Colt, a colt wants to break out into the new. His wise father horse leads him around through hardship to his own meadow, which he then declares to be the best place in the world. In Linnet, a wise crow admonishes the linnet, who thinks he is outstanding in qualities, to go and test himself against others. Adversity can teach one a great deal in a minute. In The Lion's Education, a lion has a son and wonders who should educate him. Tiger, bear, and fox nominate themselves for their power, wisdom, and political cleverness, respectively. Dog speaks up against each of these. Lion appoints him teacher. Dog keeps young lion's birth from him and teaches him the inequity and injustice of life. Once a tiger attacks dog and young lion defends him, dog declares it is time for this lion to rule. He has lost a son--but taught him well! In Parrot, a critic criticizes every bird around. Finally they ask him to sing. Embarrassed, he says No, I only hiss. I can't do any more than that. Unfortunately, 37-38 are missing. The Owl and the Eagle by Dodsley is off to a great start! This is ephemera at its best.