Multilingual Folk Tale Database


Vacca et capella, ovis et leo (Phaedrus)

The Cow, the Goat, the Sheep, and the Lion Vacca et capella, ovis et leo
Maarten Janssen Phaedrus
English Latin

There is no safety in allying with the strongest, and here is a story to show it.
A cow, a goat and a sheep were associated with the Lion in the forest. They caught a large deer and the Lion distributed it saying:
- They call me the king of the forest, so the first part is mine; you should give me the second part because I am your partner; the third part is for me for the strength I possess; and the fourth, woe to anyone who touches it!
And so, he dishonestly took it all.

Numquam est fidelis cum potente societas.
Testatur haec fabella propositum meum.
Vacca et capella et patiens ovis iniuriae
socii fuere cum leone in saltibus.
Hi cum cepissent cervum vasti corporis,
sic est locutus partibus factis leo:
'Ego primam tollo nomine hoc quia rex cluo;
secundam, quia sum consors, tribuetis mihi;
tum, quia plus valeo, me sequetur tertia;
malo adficietur si quis quartam tetigerit'.
Sic totam praedam sola improbitas abstulit.



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