vendredi 4 mai 2018

Ethiopia/ Ancient Greece: Aesop, the Father of the Fables was an African.

But who was Aesop?



Born in Nubia between VII and VI century B.C., he is taken to Phrygia where he is sold as a slave. In other words, Aesop was an African. According to Plutarch, Aesop is a former stave slave with a particularly ungrateful physical. After having dreamed that Fortune loosened his tongue, he awakened one day, cured of his stuttering. Purchased by a slave trader, he arrived in the home of a philosopher of the island of Samos named Xanthius, with whom his vivacity of mind and his ability to solve the enigmas would have allowed him to regain his freedom. He would have taken advantage of his new freedom by traveling, from Egypt to Babylon (present-day Iraq), before returning to Asia Minor at the court of Croesus, Sardis, then capital of Lydia, also frequented by the man of Athenian state Solon, one of the Seven Sages of Greece, with whom he would have spoken. He puts his talent at the service of the king of Babylon who rejoices in his enigmas. Charged by Croesus, to bring offerings to the temple of Delphi, he reveals the frauds committed by the priests of Apollo. They avenge themselves by accusing him of stealing a gold cup dedicated to God. He is judged and condemned to be precipitated from the Hyampean rock, the year 564 BC. J.-C .. After his death, the misfortune, it is said, falls on Delphi and its inhabitants. This is what the Chevalier Lestrange tells us about him: “We must believe Planude, Camerarius, and a few others, Aesop was born at Ammorius, a town in Great Phrygia. There are some who do Thracin, others Samian. He was a slave and the most deformed of all men. He had a pointed head, a flat nose, and fat lips; he was hunchbacked in front and behind”. He had a prodigious belly, turtled legs, and the tanned complexion that gave rise to his name, because Aesop and Ethiopian are the same thing. The term Ethiopian means in Greek "face burned by the sun", it is thus that the Greeks named in antiquity all the people having the skin "black". The collection, which today is called Aesop, is a compilation, consisting of prose paraphrases of the fables of Babrius, which was established in the eleventh century. His writings were to strongly influence the literature of the West; they inspired Jean de la Fontaine, Phaedrus, Avianus, and many others. The 358 fables of Aesop, collected by Demetrius of Phaleron, are part of the culture of the Indo-European peoples and undoubtedly represent the collection of fables most read literature. Jean De La Fontaine acknowledges it: "I sing the heroes of which Aesop is the father, Troupe of whom the story, although false, Contains truths which serve as lessons". Yet from the African origin of Aesop, it does not speak much: it is an information that is not mentioned in the courses of French and Literature; information that even teachers do not know ... In his book Austere's Country, Condition, Figure, and Spirits, Maxime Planude, grammarian and philologist of the 13th century, wrote about Aesop: "Many great men have endeavored to examine the nature of human things, and the causes of revolutions, to instruct posterity. It seems, when one considers the wisdom and good sense that shines in the works of Aesop, that he was divinely inspired, to give to men so many precepts of morality, so beautiful and so useful, and which surpass infinitely all those whom the greatest philosophers had hitherto given”.
Bibliography:
-Weiss Charles, Biographie universelle
(Universal Biography), 1841.
-Litchfild West Martin, La Fable : huit exposés suivis de
discussions (The Fable: eight presentations followed by discussions), Hardt Foundation, Geneva, 1984.
-Carl Karl and Vandendorpe, La fable : Vade-mecum du professeur de français
  (The Fable: Vademecum of the French teacher), Didier Hatier, Brussels-Paris, 1993.
-Jouano Corinne, Vie d’Ésope : livre du philosophe Xanthos et de son esclave Ésope : du mode de vie d'Ésope
(Life of Aesop: book of the philosopher Xanthos and his slave Aesop: of the way of life of Aesop, Les Belles Lettres, Paris, 2006.
-Chambery Emile, Esope : Fables  (Aesop: Fables),
Les Belles lettres, Paris, 2006.
-Thuram Lilian, Mes étoiles noires : de Lucy à Barack Obama
  (My black stars: from Lucy to Barack Obama, Philippe Rey, Paris, 2010.
-Esope, Fables,
Flammarion, Paris, 2014.
-Lacarrière Jacques, Les fables d’Esope : Suivies d’un essai sur le symbolisme des fables
  (Aesop's Fables: Followed by an essay on the symbolism of fables), Albin Michel, Paris, 2016.
Filmography:
-The Tortoise and the hare
, Animated Short, by Harryhausen, U.K., 2002.

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