Fabeln des achtzehnten Jahrhunderts
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About five fables each from Gellert, Gleim, Pfeffel, Hagedorn, and Lichtwer. The 24 Chodowiecki illustrations are well executed – and, according to the colophon, here gathered together for the first time – but prohibitively small: 1¼" x 2". Many of the fables here are traditional, but they are of course carefully executed in verse by these poets. Several catch my eye. The gardener woman asks the bee how it sucks from every flower when some are poisonous (Gleim, 45). Bee: "I leave the poison in the flower." A boy finds a golden coin but a Jew nearby declares it fake, and the boy throws it into a fountain (Pfeffel 56). Pfeffel berates such unasked exorcists of faith. Among the best illustrations is "Horse and Wolf" facing 62. The T of C at the end misses a whole fable from Hagedorn, a good one: "The Fisherman and the Treasure." A praiseworthy fisherman finds a dead body and drags it for burial to higher ground. Digging the grave he finds a treasure (73). Fate will reward virtue. Lichtwer has a fable on the shotgun and the hare (83). The latter goes right up to the former while the gun's owner naps. The gun threatens and asks how the hare can be so stupid. Hare: "You don't harm anyone unless he is awake and directing you." The moral is surprising to me: What good is law or punishment when authority and princes are asleep? Not in Bodemann. Only 88 pages long – plus the 24 illustrations, unpaginated.