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Perry's Index to the Aesopica

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


They say that in the beginning, when the animals were being formed, they received their endowments from Zeus. To some he gave strength, and to some speed, and to others wings. Man, however, was still naked so he said to Zeus, 'I am the only one that you have left without a gift.' Zeus replied, 'You are unaware of the gift you have obtained, but it is the greatest gift of all: you have received the gift of speech and the ability to reason, which has power both among the gods and among mortals; it is stronger than the strong and swifter than the swift.' Man then recognized the gift he had been given and bowed down before Zeus, offering him thanks.
The fable shows that while we have all been honoured by God with the gift of speech and reason, there are some who are unaware of this great honour and are instead jealous of the animals even though the animals lack both speech and sense.

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.

Perry 311: Gibbs (Oxford) 514 [English]
Perry 311: Chambry 57 [Greek]

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.