BESTIARIA LATINA BLOG - Latin Via Fables - Zoo - Legenda

Ranae et Sol

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Scroll down to find: Overview, Study Guide, Verse, Audio, and Segmented Prose Text

The story of The Frogs and The Sun is a poem by Caspar Barth. It is written in Sapphic stanzas.

The Perry number for this fable is Perry 314.

The tradition shows Aesop telling this story about the frogs on a particular social occasion. The neighborhood thief was getting married and he threw a big party for his neighbors. The foolish neighbors flocked to the party to celebrate, whereupon Aesop told the story of the frogs to show them how foolish they were being: in the same way that more Suns would cause trouble for the Frogs, more thieves would cause trouble for the neighborhood. You can see a 1501 woodcut illustration for this fable showing the thief's wedding at the University of Mannheim website.

You can find a translation of a different Latin version of this story in Aesop's Fables, by Laura Gibbs (Oxford University Press, 2003).

   Use this Study Guide to organize your learning activities.

Here is the poem (click "play" icon for brief audio sample):

Nuptias quondam celebrare Solem
In paludosis cecinit lacunis
Fama; gaudebant hilarae et parabant
Carmina Ranae.

Una quas, longo senio erudita,
Voce sic tamden patrua increpavit,
Stulta gens; unum male fertis, acri
Sidere Solem.

Porro quid vestro generi futurum est
Liberos uno generante plures?
Vota sic mortalia saepe contra
Se ipsa repugnant.

The following version puts the words in a more prose-like order so that it will be easier for you to read:

Fama cecinit quondam
Solem celebrare nuptias
in paludosis lacunis.

Additional grammar commentary to be added... meanwhile, if you have questions, use the Comments? Questions? Suggestions? link at the top or bottom of this page if you have a query. You might also want to look at these Tips on Using Segmented Texts.

Ranae hilarae
et parabant carmina.
longo senio
voce patrua
ranas sic increpavit:
Stulta gens!
Male fertis
unum Solem,
acri sidere.
Porro quid futurum est
vestro generi,
uno generante
liberos plures?
Sic saepe vota mortalia
contra se ipsa repugnant.

© The segmented texts, annotations and audio files at
are copyrighted by Laura Gibbs, 2007. No copyright is claimed for any images.