Chr. F. Gellert's sämtliche Fabeln und Erzählungen in drei Büchern
Gellert, Christian Fürchtegott
. Hahn'sche Buchhandlung . Leipzig
Language note: German
PT1883.A17 1861 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
Language note: German
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This book is similar to but apparently seriously antedates an edition by the same publisher for which I have guessed a date of 1910. That edition claimed on its title-page Nach den ältesten Ausgaben. It was a Neue Ausgabe as opposed to this Volks- Ausgabe. It had fifteen illustrations as against the twelve here, and its frontispiece was Roth's portrait of Gellert. Here the frontispiece is Damokles. The publisher is here only in Leipzig; there he adds Hannover. The Vorwort there is four pages long; here it is only two. There is here an identical beginning T of C. I decided for that Gellert edition to examine the first eight illustrated fables, and I will repeat here what I found. Der Tanzbär (2) presents a bear who has had to dance for his living; now he breaks away and rejoins the bears. He shows them his new skills. They try to do the same and fail. Soon they ask him to leave. Show skill and people will talk about you, and soon envy will follow, and your talent will become a crime. Also illustrated is Das Gespenst (17): you can use poetry, even or especially bad poetry, to drive away ghosts! Der Hund (22) tells of a miserly dog that, even in death, will not give up his treasured bones. Der Bettler (27) gives us a beggar; with a sword in his hand and a plea for compassion, he is like the writer who pays compliments and says that he trusts our sense of justice--but also uses threats. Die zärtliche Frau (39) is about a woman who at her husband's deathbed cries out Death, come and take me! When death shows up and asks if someone called, she points to her husband and says that he called. Damokles (53) is straightforward and true to the ancient anecdote. Der grüne Esel (61) is the story of instant notoriety and fast movement into being passé. Die kranke Frau (71) presents a woman who cannot be healed by doctors but only by a tailor's new dress! Because of its good illustration, I gave myself a bonus: Der beherzte Entschluss (127). It is worth it! A condemned man finds an old spinster pleading for him. The judge says that he will spare him if he will marry her. The prisoner choses death and asks the judge to kill him now. Canvas spine.