Friday, December 24, 2010

Boothby: The Panther and the Countryman

Evil with evil is repaid.
A Panther, in a pit-fall laid,
Some shepherds found; with clubs and stones,
They did their best to break his bones.
But one of a more generous nature
Humanely fed the suffering creature.
At night the shepherds went to bed,
Thinking next day to find him dead.
But renovate with rest and food,
He leap'd the pit and gain'd the wood.
In a few days again he came;
This visit was no more the same.
Shepherds and sheep before him fall;
In his vast rage he slaughters all.
He who had fed him, seiz'd with fear,
Begg'd the fierce beast his life to spare;
When he,"Friend lay aside alarm;
Who gave me bread I will not harm;
Of those, with stones, who treated me,
Alone, reveng'd I mean to be."

Source: Boothby - Phaedrus 3.2.
panthera et agrestes

Click here for a SLIDESHOW of all the colored Steinhowel images. You can see one man offering the panther some food, while another one wants to beat the panther with a club.

M0138 Perry494

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