This new translation is the first to represent all the main fable collections in ancient Latin and Greek derived from the legendary Aesop, arranged according to the fables' contents and themes. It includes 600 fables, many of which come from sources never before translated into English.
These 10 fables are given a fresh treatment in rhyme, and a new look by Rayevsky. His foxes, bears, lions and other animals appear in medieval and Shakespearean capes, jerkins and plumed hats, all in deep reds, subtle browns and greens. The verses are not always successful, often indulging in inverted syntax to rhyme, and uneven metrics. But phrasing is often clever, and humor is everywhere. In true Aesopian fashion, the morals are soundly thumped at the end: mouse and lion awkwardly learn, ``Yes, sometimes the weak and sometimes the strong/ Must help each other to save right from wrong.'' The boy who cried wolf is more snappily told, ``Please learn your lesson/ Young man and beware:/ Never cry `Wolf!'/ When the wolf isn't there.'' Ages 4-7.