Fabeln aus aller Welt
This is an impressive large-format book. It contains 110 fables. Impressive is the care at the book's end to list them in a T of C and an AI. There follows on 188 a list of sources, first for the fables whose authors are known and then for the fables whose authors are unknown. Finally there is a brief description of each of the known authors. These pages are done nicely in several colors. The book is impressive in its breadth of authors and sources and in its illustrations. Let me mention some of the best illustrations: the frightened hare about to commit suicide on 28-29; swan, pike, and crab pulling in different directions from different places on the pages (76-77); the anthropomorphic horse on 132-33 who has to carry the dead ass' burden and skin; and FC's artist (172-3). Among the briefest fables is Ein Vergleich by Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach (41), in which a molehill addresses a volcano, asking why he plays out his inner struggles before the whole world. I have my own struggles, but who ever saw me spew out fire? Novalis' Das Pferd with its poignant illustration raises the question of the price of enslavement (43). Grillparzer's Diplomatischer Rat makes a good point and is well illustrated (48-49). The marten asks the fox how to get hold of chickens. Use force! He uses force and drives the chickens right to the fox! A clever story, new to me, is attributed to Ivan Krylov: Warum das Schwein weinte (156), accompanied by another good illustration. People keep using Schwein as a put-down word, and the pig finally breaks down and cries. A little ass in the barn is sympathetic and asks why he is crying. He hears the whole story and then responds Ja, das ist wirklich eine Schweinerei! The last fable is presented as a Nachwort: I take it to be a challenging reflection on compassion, again accompanied by a strong illustration.