Welcome to Aesop's Books!

Welcome to Aesop's Books, a blog where you can find illustrated fables in English and learn about full-text Aesop books online. As of July 13 2017, I've posted fables and illustrations from over 30 books in the Book Library, and there are now over 1700 illustrated fables in the Fable Library, representing over 450 different fable types. See below for more information about the Books and about the Fable Types. There's also a Frequency Listing so you can see all the fables arranged in order of "popularity" (based on how many versions I have at this site).


Random Fables. Each time you refresh this page, you will see a random fable illustration (here) and also a random illustration with the fable text (at the bottom of the post). To find out more about the random items you see, click on the "more info" link.



ABOUT THE BOOKS

The fables with texts come from the following books which you can browse here at this blog, and I'll be adding new books as the summer progress. Here are my top ten favorites, arranged by year of publication:
  1. Fables of Phaedrus from 1667. Since the text here is in Latin, I used an 18th-century English translation of Phaedrus by Christopher Smart to accompany the illustrations.
  2. Select Fables of Aesop with illustrations by Thomas Bewick, published in 1784. This is a wonderful collection of both classical and modern fables, showing how wide the range of "Aesopica" was in the 18th century.
  3. Fables of Aesop and Others, Translated into Human Nature by Charles H. Bennett, published in 1857. The fables in this book are sharply satirical, and the illustrations are remarkable examples of animals-as-humans. I also found a version with colored illustrations!
  4. Fables of La Fontaine, illustrated by Grandville. Of the many illustrations done for La Fontaine, Grandville's are my favorite. I used Elizur Wright's English translation for the text.
  5. The Baby's Own Aesop, with limericks by W. J. Linton and illustrations by Walter Crane, published in 1887. Walter Crane was one of the most brilliant book illustrators of the 19th century, and his book belongs among his masterpieces.
  6. The Fables of Aesop by Joseph Jacobs with illustrations by Richard Heighway, published in 1894. Joseph Jacobs was one of the foremost Aesop scholars of the 19th century.
  7. A Hundred Fables of La Fontaine with illustrations by Percy J. Billinghurst, published in 1900. The English text is from Elizur Wright's verse translation of La Fontaine.
  8. Aesop's Fables with illustrations by J. M. Conde, published in 1905; the text is an adaptation of the Townsend translation. I have only included the color illustrations; later on, I need to go back and grab the black-and-white illustrations also.
  9. The Fables of Aesop illustrated by Edward Julius Detmold and published in 1909. Detmold's illustrations are gorgeous!
  10. Aesop's Fables by V. S. Vernon Jones, with illustrations by the ever-wonderful Arthur Rackham, published in 1912. You will find both color and black-and-white illustrations here.
For more books, see the sidebar of the blog.


ABOUT THE FABLE TYPES

At the bottom of each fable post you will see an index link, with either a Perry fable number, or a number from my own Mille Fabulae et Una fable collection, or an "Other" number (for fables not in Perry and not in my Latin collection).


To see more versions of the fable, just click on that index link! There is also a list in the sidebar of the fables for which I have the largest number of versions so far, and here is the complete Fable Type Index.

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