The Classics Club: Aesop’s Fables

Aesop's Fables

My spirits and my reading have been good recently, but I have struggled to keep my attention fastened to one novel. In which case Aesop’s Fables was the perfect solution as I could read one or two fables at a time. I am not usually a fan of short story collections; for this reason this poor collection has been on my kindle growing dusty since I received my kindle last Christmas! Reading this though may have changed my mind for good and I have now downloaded a whole lot more short story collections to try too.

Aesop’s Fables is a collection of fables about animals, nature, and gods credited to Aesop, who is believed to have been a freed slave who lived in Ancient Greece. Apart from the fables themselves very little written evidence of Aesop the man or his life has been found. Considering this collection is believed to have been written in the 5th century BC I found it very easy to read and the style didn’t feel particularly archaic at all. Each story varied in length from a short paragraph to a page and a bit which meant I whipped through them pretty quick. They were perfect to dip in and out of before bed or when waiting for appointments.

Aesop’s Fables is probably best known for the moral messages that each fable contains. I instantly recognised ‘the boy who cried wolf’ however not every moral was as obvious. Some of the fables ended with a short moral explanation, most didn’t though so I was left to decipher them on my own which is when I noticed the age of this work. On whole I think I understood the message that each fable was representing. There was a few that due to context and cultural differences I didn’t understand. These were few and far between though so didn’t let it dampen my enjoyment of the rest of the collection.

Since childhood I have enjoyed tales of animals, nature, and gods so these fables did play straight into that. There is an element of mythology to the feel of this collection, like mythology though the stories aren’t particularly happy. As each fable is meant to represent a moral this means they often contain death, theft, abuse, lies, and other things that we aren’t meant to be doing. As much as I enjoyed reading this it certainly isn’t the happiest work I’ve read recently.

Aesop’s Fables is an interesting and easy read best enjoyed at a leisurely pace. I highly recommend to those interested in reading classic short stories. This is my 7th read towards The Classics Club. Now I have a taste for short stories myself I have moved straight on to The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

Have you read Aesop’s Fables? Did you enjoy it?


12 thoughts on “The Classics Club: Aesop’s Fables

  1. No…I have not read Aesop’s Fables. Unless I have forgotten and had to read it in high school English Class.


    Stopping by from Carole’s December Books I Loved. I am in that list as #4.

    Silver’s Reviews
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  2. The only one I remember that isn’t famous is Swan Song. I believe it was 80 or something (one of those random childhood memories). Very sad story, I think I remember it because of the easy title. I like the fables in that appreciative way, but they are quite difficult to love.

  3. I’m currently reading a fable a night, before bed. (I can’t read novels in bed. I fall asleep. A fable I can manage! And it’s crazy how something so short relaxes me.)

    I’m reading the hardcover edition illustrated by Ernest Griset.

    1. That is exactly what I was doing Mabel. Nothing worse than waking up to realise you’ve dropped your book and lost your place! One or two fables and then you can easily settle down for the night. I hadn’t heard of Ernest Griset before, but just looked him up. Your edition must be wonderfully illustrated.

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