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Perry's Index to the Aesopica

Fables exist in many versions; here is one version in English:


The lion, the wolf, and the fox agreed to go hunting together. The fox caught a goose, the wolf caught a fat ram, and the lion caught a scrawny cow. Then it was time to eat. The lion told the wolf to divide their catch. The wolf said, 'Let each one take what he has caught: the lion will take the cow, I'll take the ram, and the fox will take the goose.' The lion was enraged and, raising his paw, he used his claws to strip the wolf's head of all its fur and skin. The lion then ordered the fox to divide the spoils. The fox said, 'My lord, you should eat as much of the fat ram as you want, since its meat is tender, then you should eat as much of the goose as you want, but you should eat the cow's flesh only in moderation, since it is so tough. Whatever is left over you can give to us, your servants.' 'Well done,' said the lion. 'Who taught you how to do such a good job of dividing the spoils?' The fox said, 'My lord, I have learned from my associate's red cap: his excoriated skull provides a very vivid lesson.'

Source: Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura Gibbs. Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
NOTE: New cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.

For an index of stories of this type, see Perry 339.


You can find a compilation of Perry's index to the Aesopica in the gigantic appendix to his edition of Babrius and Phaedrus for the Loeb Classical Library (Harvard University Press: Cambridge, 1965). This book is an absolute must for anyone interested in the Aesopic fable tradition. Invaluable.