Friday, August 20, 2010

12. The Lion in Love

A lion had fallen madly in love with the daughter of a man who lived in a cabin in the woods. The lion said to the woman's father, "I love your daughter very much; please let me marry her." The man replied that this was impossible. "My daughter is so delicate and so defenseless," he said. "She could never endure your sharp claws and teeth." The lion then asked, "If I no longer had these sharp claws and teeth, then could I marry your daughter?" "Yes," the man said, "under those conditions, you could marry my daughter." So the lion agreed to have his claws and his teeth removed. One by one, the man tore out the lion's claws and, one by one, he tore out the lion's teeth, and the lion endured it all patiently. Then, when the man saw that the lion had no weapons with which to fight back, he attacked the lion with sticks and clubs, driving the lion off into the woods. "Alas," groaned the lion as he painfully made his escape, "because of love's madness, I am now far worse off than I was before."

Here is the Latin original.

Leo Amatorius

Click here for a SLIDESHOW of all the Crane images. In this illustration, we can see why the poor lion has fallen in love: Cupid has struck him with one of love's arrows!

M0012 Perry140

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