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AESOPUS.

taining 136 fables, published first A. D. 1610, from MSS. at Heidelberg. This is so clumsy a forgery, that it mentions the orator Demades, who lived 200 years after Aesop, and contains a whole sentence from the book of Job (yv^vol yap TjA^Ojuev ol irdvres, "yv^voi ovv ctTreAeixro/xeOa). Some of the passages Bentley has shewn to be fragments of Choliambic verses, and has made it tolerably cer­tain that they were stolen from Babrius. The other collection was made by the above mentioned monk of Constantinople, Maximus Planndes. These contain at least one Hebraism (/3ocoy ez> rfj /cap5/a : compare e. g. Eccles. xi. 1, elirov kv rrj KccpSia juoi'), and among them are words entirely modern, as jSouraAis a bird, jSoui/eupoi/ a beast, and also traces of the Choliambics of Babrius. The third collection was found in a MS. at Florence, and published in 1809. Its date is about a cen­tury before the time of Planudes, and it contains the life which was prefixed to his collection, and commonly supposed to be his own.

Bentley's dissertation on Aesop is appended to those on Phalaris. The genuineness of the existing forgeries was stoutly maintained by his Oxford antagonists (Preface to Aesopicurum Fabularum Delectus, Oxford 1628); but there is no one in our day who disputes his decision.

It remains to notice briefly the theory which assigns to Aesop's fables an oriental origin. Among the writers of Arabia, one of the most famous is Lukman, whom some traditions make contempo­rary with David, others the son of a sister or aunt of Job, while again he has been represented as an ancient king or chief of the tribe of Ad. " Lukman's wisdom" is proverbial among the Arabs, and joined with Joseph's beauty and David's melody. [See the Thousand and One Nights (Lane's translation), Story of Prince Kamer-ez-Zeman and Princess Budoor, and Note 59 to chapter x.] The Persian accounts of this Lukman represent him as an ugly black slave, and it seems probable that the author of the Life en­grafted this and other circumstances in the Oriental traditions of Lukman upon the classical tales re­specting Aesop. The fables ascribed to Aesop have in many respects an eastern character, alluding to Asiatic customs, and introducing panthers, pea­cocks, and monkeys among their dramatis personee. All this makes it likely that the fables attri­buted both to Lukman and Aesop are derived from the same Indo-Persian source.

The principal editions of Aesop's Fables are, 1. The collection formed by Planudes with a Latin translation, published at Milan by Buono Accorso at the end of the 15th century. 2. An­other edition of the same collection, with some additional fables from a MS. in the Bibliotheque du Roi at Paris, by Robert Stephanus, 1546. 3. The edition of Novelet, 1610, which added to these the Heidelberg collection, published at Frank­fort on the Main. These have been followed by editions of all or some of the Fables, by Hudson at Oxford (1718), Hauptmann at Leipzig (1741), Heusinger at Leipzig (1756), Ernesti at the same place (1781), and G. H. Schaefer again at Leipzig (1810, 1818, 1820). Francesco de Furia added to the above the new fables from the Flo­rentine MS., and his edition was reprinted by Coray at Paris (1810). All the fables have been put together and published, 231 in number, by J. G. Sclmeider, at Breslau, in 1810. [G. E. L. C.]

AESOPUS.

AESOPUS, a Greek historian, who wrote a life of Alexander the Great. The original is lost, but there is a Latin translation of it by Julius Valerius [valerius], of which Franciscus Juretus had, he says (ad Symmach. Ep. x. 54), a manu­script. It was first published, however, by A. Mai from a MS. in the Ambrosian library, Milan, 1817, 4to., reprinted Frankfort, 1818, 8vo. The title is " Itinerarium ad Constantinum Atigustum, etc. : accedunt Julii Valerii Res gestae Alexandri Mace-donis," etc. The time when Aesopus lived is un­certain, and even his existence has been doubted. (Barth, Adversar. ii. 10.) Mai, in the preface to his edition, contended that the work was written before 389, a. d., because the temple of Serapis at Alexandria, which was destroyed by order of Theodosius, is spoken of in the translation (Jul. Valer. i. 31) as still standing. But serious objec­tions to this inference have been raised by Letronno

«/

(Journ. des Savans, 1818, p. 617), who refers it to the seventh or eighth century, which the weight of internal evidence would rather point to. The book is full of the most extravagant stories and glaring mistakes, and is a work of no credit. [A. A.] AESO'PUS, CLAU'DIUS or CLO'DiUS, the most celebrated tragic actor at Rome in the Cice­ronian period, probably a freedman of the Cloclia gens. Horace {Ep. ii. 1. 82) and other authors put him on a level with Roscius. (Fronto, p. 44, ed. Niebuhr.) Each was preeminent in his own department; Roscius in comedy, being, with respect to action and delivery (prommtiatio), more rapid (citatior, Qiimtil. Inst. Or. xi. 3. §111); Ae-sopus in tragedy, being more weighty (gravior, Quintil. I.e.}. Aesopus took great pains to perfect himself in his art by various methods. He dili­gently studied the exhibition of character in real life ; and when any important trial was going on, especially, for example, when Hortensius was to plead, he was constantly in attendance, that he might watch and be able to represent the more truthfully the feelings which were actually dis­played on such occasions. (Val. Max. viii. 10. § 2.) He never, it is said, put on the mask for the cha­racter he had to perform in, without first looking at it attentively from a distance for some time, that so in performing he might preserve his voice and action in perfect keeping with the appearance he would have. (Fronto, de Eloq. 5. 1, p. 37.) Perhaps this anecdote may confirm the opinion (Diet, of Ant. s.v. Persona], that masks had only lately been introduced in the regular drama at Rome, and were not always used even for leading characters ; for, according to Cicero (de Div. i. 37 J, Aesopus excelled in power of face and fire of ex­pression (tantum ardorem vultuum atque motuum"), which of course would not have been visible if he had performed only with a mask. From the whole passage in Cicero and from the anec­dotes recorded of him, his acting would seem to have been characterised chiefly by strong emphasis and vehemence. On the whole, Cicero calls him summits artifex, and says he was fitted to act a leading part no less in real life than on the stage. (Pro Sext. 56.) It does not appear that he ever performed in comedy. Valerius Maximus (viii. 10. § 2) calls Aesopus and Roscius both " ludicrae artis peritissimos viros,'' but this may merely de­note the theatrical art in general, including tragedy as well as comedy. (Comp. ludicrae tibiae, Plin. H. .ZV.xvi. 36.) Fronto calls him (p. 87) Traywus Ae~

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