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Aesop's Human Zoo: Roman Stories About Our Bodies (Hardback)
  • Aesop's Human Zoo: Roman Stories About Our Bodies (Hardback)
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Aesop's Human Zoo: Roman Stories About Our Bodies (Hardback)

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£23.50
Hardback 128 Pages / Published: 12/10/2004
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Most of us grew up with the tales of woodland creatures and their underlying morals found in Aesop's Fables. However, the familiar versions of the stories attributed to this enigmatic and astute storyteller are actually based on the Roman slave Phaedrus's adaptations of Aesop's earlier works. But even Phaedrus's renderings have been rewritten so extensively over the centuries that they no longer resemble the originals. In Aesop's Human Zoo, legendary Cambridge classicist John Henderson puts together a surprising set of up-front poems that translate fifty sharp fables by Phaedrus into terse, colloquial English. Providing unusual insights into the heart of Roman civilization, these clever poems open up odd avenues of ancient lore and life as they explore social types and physical aspects of the body, often mocking the limitations of human nature and offering vulgar or promiscuous interpretations of common actions. Beginning to advanced classicists and Latin scholars will appreciate the original Latin text provided in this bilingual edition. And the inclusion of a number of witty nineteenth-century wood engravings by Thomas Bewick, the father of modern English book illustration, renders the collection complete. Including strange proverbs and satirical anecdotes, filled with saucy naughtiness and awful puns, Aesop's Human Zoo will amuse you with its eccentricity and impress you with its undeniably accurate translations and shrewdly (often brutally) candid messages. The entertainment offered in this volume is truly a novelty - a good and knowing laugh through classical literature.

Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226326818
Number of pages: 128
Weight: 290 g
Dimensions: 210 x 145 x 19 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"Henderson has applied his inimitable acuity, wit, and word power to the fables of the liberated Roman slave Phaedrus. In his sharp translations, he shows how Phaedrus turns tongue-wagging into finger-wagging. These fables explain male baldness, and nanny goats' beards, why dinner parties are a torment, and why dogs sniff other dogs' bottoms. Surely the perfect gift for anyone you know who needs to be told a few home truths about themselves!"

--Susanna Morton Braund, Stanford University
"A charming collection of surprising, reflective short poems about human and animal failures. "Aesop's Human Zoo" will prove a playful read for anyone interested in Aesopian fables, or in a form of poetry that reflects the anxieties and power dynamics of the early Roman imperial period. It is, also, simply fun to read."

--Shadi Bartsch, University of Chicago
Henderson has applied his inimitable acuity, wit, and word power to the fables of the liberated Roman slave Phaedrus.In his sharp translations, he shows how Phaedrus turns tongue-wagging into finger-wagging. These fables explain male baldness, and nanny goats beards, why dinner parties are a torment, and why dogs sniff other dogs bottoms.Surely the perfect gift for anyone you know who needs to be told a few home truths about themselves!
--Susanna Morton Braund, Stanford University"
A charming collection of surprising, reflective short poems about human and animal failures. "Aesop s Human Zoo" will prove a playful read for anyone interested in Aesopian fables, or in a form of poetry that reflects the anxieties and power dynamics of the early Roman imperial period. It is, also, simply fun to read.
--Shadi Bartsch, University of Chicago"

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