Aesop's Fables, translated by Laura Gibbs (2002)
350. APHRODITE AND THE WEASEL
Perry 50 (Babrius
A weasel once fell in love with a handsome young man and the blessed
goddess Aphrodite, the mother of desire, allowed the weasel to change
her shape, so that she appeared to be a beautiful woman whom any man would
be glad to take as his wife. As soon as the young man laid eyes on her,
he also fell in love and wanted to marry her. While the wedding feast
was in progress, a mouse ran by. The bride leaped up from her richly decorated
couch and began to run after the mouse, thus bringing an end to the wedding.
After having played his little joke, Eros took his leave: Nature had proved
stronger than Love.
Note: Eros is the Greek personification of Desire, like 'Cupid' in
Latin. This story has much in common with the Greek proverb, 'weasels
don't wear wedding gowns' (Zenobius 2.93, who directly associates this
proverb with the Aesopic fable).
Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura
Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.