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The Book of Greek and Roman Folktales, Legends, and Myths
Edited, translated, and introduced by William Hansen
With illustrations by Glynnis Fawkes

Book Description | Endorsements
Introduction [in PDF format]

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

List of Illustrations and Tables xxiii
Preface xxv
Abbreviations xxvii
Introduction 1
The Kinds of Ancient Story 7
The Present Book 37
Chapter 1 Kings and Princesses 47
1 Cupid and Psyche 47
2 The Treasury of Rhampsinitos 83
3 The Pharaoh and the Courtesan 86
Chapter 2 Gods and Ghosts 88
Divine Epiphanies 88
4 The Muses Appear to Hesiod 88
5 The Muses Appear to Archilochos 89
6 Thamyris Competes against the Muses 90
7 Stesichoros's Palinode 91
8 Asklepios Heals Pandaros 92
9 Asklepios Reveals Secrets of the Gods 93
10 Athena Saves the Lindians 97
11 The Altar of the Vulture God 98
12 A Fortune in Water 99
13 The Rescue of Simonides 100
Lower Mythology 101
14 Narcissus 101
15 Rhoikos and the Nymph103
16 "The Great God Pan Is Dead!"104
17 Bogies 105
Shape-Changers 108
18 The Werewolf 108
19 The Empousa 110
Ghosts 112
20 Philinnion 113
21 The Last Princess at Troy 117
22 The Grateful Dead Man 118
23 Murder at the Inn 119
24 Letter from the Middle of the Earth 120
25 The Haunted House 121
26 The Haunted Baths 123
27 The Haunted Battlefield 124
28 The Hero of Temesa 125
29 Periander's Wife 127
Early Wonder-Workers 128
30 Abaris the Hyperborean128
31 Aristeas of Prokonnesos 129
32 Hermotimos of Klazomenai 131
33 Epimenides of Crete 132
34 Pherekydes of Syros 133
35 Pythagoras 134
Transmigration of Souls 135
36 Pythagoras Remembers an Earlier Life 135
37 Pythagoras Discerns a Friend's Soul in a Dog 136
38 Empedokles Recalls His Earlier Lives 137
39 The Woman Who Remembers Too Much 137
Magicians and Witches 138
40 Pases the Magician 138
41 Attack by Star-Stroke 139
42 A Woman Dies from Spells 140
43 The Soul-Drawing Wand 140
44 Apollonios Cures a Plague 141
45 The Magician's Apprentice 143
46 Evil Landladies 144
Divination and Seers 145
47 The Language of Birds 145
48 The Acquisition of the Sibylline Oracles 146
49 What the Sibyl Wants 148
50 Bacchus Forsakes Antony 148
51 Cato Explains a Portent 149
52 Cato on Soothsayers 150
Fate 150
53 Polykrates's Ring 150
54 "Zeus, Why Me?" 152
55 The Last Days of Mykerinos 152
56 Kleonymos's Near-Death Experience 153
57 Eurynoos's Near-Death Experience 155
58 Curma's Near-Death Experience 155
Jews, Christians, and Pagans 156
59 The Origin of the Septuagint 156
60 Miracles of Jesus 157
61 Paul and Barnabas Mistaken for Pagan Gods159
62 The Discovery of the True Cross 160
63 The Last Delphic Oracle 162
64 "You Have Won, Galilean!" 163
65 The Murder of Hypatia 165
Chapter 3 Legends on Various Themes 167
The Bizarre 167
66 Capture of a Satyr 167
67 Capture of a Centaur 168
68 Sightings of Mermen and Mermaids 169
69 The Self-Sustaining Beast 170
70 In Love with a Statue 171
71 Animal Offspring 175
72 The Ugly Man 175
73 Male Parturition 176
74 Sudden Change of Sex 176
75 Periodic Ecstasy 180
76 The Laughing Tirynthians 180
77 The Man Who Loses His Laugh 181
78 A Strange Tomb 182
79 The Lame Man and the Blind Man 183
Irony 184
80 Intaphrenes's Wife 184
81 A Parent's Request 185
82 Plato's Characters 185
83 The Unbreakable Glass Bowl 186
Animals 186
84 The Dolphin Rider 186
85 The Grateful Dolphin 189
86 Androkles and the Lion 189
87 How Ophiteia Gets Its Name 191
88 Xanthippos's Dog 192
89 The Accidental Killing of a Cat 193
Children 194
90 The Children Play King 194
91 The Children Play Priest 195
92 The Children Play War 197
93 A Child Steals from the Goddess 197
Friends 198
94 Damon and Phintias 198
95 Friends Unknown 200
96 Abauchas's Choice 201
Rulers and Tyrants 202
97 Plato Teaches a Tyrant about Democracy 202
98 The City of Forbidden Expression 202
99 Ismenias's Subterfuge 203
100 Queen for a Day 204
101 The Absentminded Emperor 205
Justice 205
102 Zeus's Ledger 205
103 The Golden Ax 206
104 The Judge of the Ants 207
105 Tarpeia's Reward 208
106 The Cranes of Ibykos 209
107 The Murder of Mitys of Argos 209
108 An Eye for an Eye 210
109 The Trial of the Courtesan Phryne 211
110 The Problem of Dreamt Sex 212
111 The Disputed Child 214
112 Abusive Son of an Abusive Father 215
Chapter 4 Tricksters and Lovers 216
Trickery and Cleverness 216
113 Trophonios and Agamedes 216
114 The Dishonest Banker 217
115 The Joint Depositors 218
116 The Two Thieves 218
117 Aesop and the Figs 219
118 Never Heard Before 221
119 The Slaves Take Over 222
120 The Milesians Hold a Party 223
121 Saving Lampsakos 225
122 The Suckling Daughter 225
123 A Donkey's Shadow 226
124 The Hoax 227
Lovers and Seducers 228
125 Zeus and Hera Wrangle over Sexuality 228
126 The Affair of Ares and Aphrodite 229
127 Iphimedeia Desires Poseidon 233
128 Hippolytos and Phaidra 234
129 The Husband's Untimely Return: 1 235
130 The Husband's Untimely Return: 2 236
131 The Signal 237
132 The Widow of Ephesos 238
133 Sleeping with a God 240
134 The Pergamene Boy 243
135 Aesop and the Master's Wife 245
136 The King's Trusted Friend 247
137 Dream-Lovers 251
138 The Astute Physician 253
139 Hero and Leander 254
140 Xanthos, Who Longs for His Wife 256
141 Ariston and His Friend's Wife 257
142 Olympians in the Bedroom 259
Chapter 5 Artists and Athletes 260
Artists and the Arts 260
143 Herakles Fooled 260
144 Nature Fooled 260
145 Painter Fooled 261
146 The Sculptor Polykleitos 262
147 Models for Helen of Troy 262
148 Helen's Chalice 263
149 Archilochos: Lethal Iambics 264
150 Hipponax: More Lethal Iambics 265
151 The Cicada 265
152 A Singer's Compensation 266
153 Pindar's Sacrifice 266
154 Pindar's House 267
155 Phrynichos Fined 267
156 The Chorus of Aeschylus's Eumenides 268
157 Sophocles on Himself and Euripides 268
158 "I See a Weasel" 269
159 "Mother, I Call to You" 269
160 Saved by Euripides 270
161 How Menander Composes His Plays 272
162 The First Line of Plato's Republic 272
163 Ovid's Worst Lines 273
Athletes 274
164 The Origin of the Stadium 274
165 The First Marathon 275
166 The Origin of Nude Athletes 276
167 The Origin of Nude Trainers 278
168 Polymestor the Sprinter 278
169 Ageus the Long-Distance Runner 279
170 Milon the Wrestler 280
171 Eumastas the Strongman 281
172 Theagenes's Statue 282
173 Poulydamas the Pancratiast 283
174 Kleomedes Runs Amok 284
175 Astylos Angers His Hometown 286
176 Exainetos Pleases His Hometown 286
177 Glaukos the Boxer 286
178 The Reluctant Dueler 287
Chapter 6 Memorable Words, Notable Actions 290
Portents 290
179 The Infant Pindar on Mt Helikon 290
180 The Infant Plato on Mt Hymettos 291
181 Young Demosthenes in Court 291
Characterizations 292
182 A Statue of Homer 292
183 Themistokles and the Man from Seriphos 292
184 Aristeides the Just 292
185 Timon the Misanthrope 293
186 The Arrest of Theramenes 295
187 Socrates's Hardihood 296
188 Socrates Ponders a Problem 297
189 Demosthenes's Handicaps 297
190 "Delivery!" 299
191 Only Human 299
192 What Alexander Sleeps Upon 300
193 Cleopatra's Wager 300
194 The Lamprey Pools 302
195 A Principled Man 303
196 Nero Fiddles 304
197 "Where Would He Be Now?" 306
198 A Slave's Eye 306
199 The People of Akragas 307
Laconic Spartans 307
200 Too Many Words 307
201 A Spartan Mother 308
202 Discussion at Thermopylae 308
203 Alexander the Great Becomes a God 309
204 On Spartan Adultery 309
Delusion 310
205 Menekrates, Who Calls Himself Zeus 310
206 Menekrates-Zeus Writes to King Philip 311
207 Philip Hosts Menekrates 312
208 Hannon's Birds 313
209 The Woman Who Holds Up the World with Her Finger 313
210 The House Called Trireme 314
211 The Happy Shipowner 315
212 The Happy Playgoer 315
Memorable Words 316
213 Ars Longa, Vita Brevis 316
214 Which Came First? 316
215 Alter Ego 317
216 "Give Me a Place to Stand, and I'll Move the World!" 317
217 Life Is Like the Olympic Games 319
218 "The Die Is Cast" 320
219 "Et tu, Brute?" 322
220 In Hoc Signo Vinces 323
Memorable Experiences 325
221 Toxic Honey 325
222 A Narrow Escape 326
223 The Great Fish 327
224 The Discovery of Archimedes's Tomb 328
Summing Up and Last Words 329
225 Counting One's Blessings 329
226 Socrates 330
227 Theophrastos's Lament 331
228 Vespasian's Last Words 332
Deaths 333
229 Pythagoras 333
230 Aeschylus 334
231 Euripides 335
232 Philemon 336
233 Diogenes the Cynic 337
234 Zenon 338
235 Cleopatra 338
236 Petronius Arbiter 340
237 Archimedes 342
Chapter 7 Sages and Philosophers 344
Truth and Wisdom 344
238 The Seven Sages and the Prize of Wisdom 344
239 Thales on Life and Death 346
240 A Question of Responsibility 346
241 A Problem of Identity 346
242 Secundus the Silent Philosopher 347
Converting to Philosophy 348
243 Plato 348
244 Axiothea 349
245 Epicurus 349
Benefits and Perils of Philosophy 350
246 Aristippos on the Philosopher's Advantage 350
247 Aristippos on the Benefits of Philosophy 350
248 Antisthenes on the Benefits of Philosophy 350
249 Diogenes on the Benefits of Philosophy 351
250 Krates on the Benefits of Philosophy 351
251 The Most Useful Man in Ephesos 351
252 Protagoras's Books Burned 352
253 Sinning against Philosophy 352
The Philosophic Life 353
254 Thales in the Well 353
255 Thales and the Olive Presses 354
Wealth vs Wisdom 354
256 Simonides's View 354
257 Aristippos's View 355
The Cynics 355
258 Diogenes on Being Laughed At 355
259 Diogenes and the Lantern 356
260 The Meeting of Diogenes and Alexander 356
261 Alexander's Offer 357
262 Diogenes on Personal Attire 357
263 Diogenes on Temple Theft 358
264 Diogenes on a Public Reading 358
265 Diogenes Visits a Brothel 358
266 Diogenes on the City of Myndos 358
267 "Watch Out!" 359
268 Krates and Hipparchia 359
269 Monimos on Wealth 360
Philosophers Criticize One Another 360
270 Diogenes Criticizes Plato 360
271 Plato Criticizes Diogenes 361
272 Plato Characterizes Diogenes 361
273 Diogenes on Plato's Theory of Ideas 361
274 Diogenes on a Definition of Plato's 361
275 Diogenes on the Impossibility of Motion 362
Education and Learning 362
276 A Song before Dying 362
277 The Entrance to Plato's Classroom 363
278 The Delian Problem 363
279 The Worst Punishment 364
Discoveries and Inventions 364
280 The Invention of Hunting 364
281 The Invention of Board Games 365
282 The Original Language 366
283 Thales Inscribes a Triangle in a Circle 367
284 Thales Measures the Height of the Pyramids 367
285 Thales Predicts an Eclipse 368
286 The Pythagorean Theorem 368
287 "Eureka!" 369
Happiness and Contentment 371
288 The Origin of Human Miseries 371
289 The Rock of Tantalos 373
290 The Sword of Damocles 374
291 King Midas 375
292 Wealth and Happiness 376
293 Water and a Loaf of Bread 378
294 Gold vs Figs 378
295 Untouched by Grief 378
296 The Happy Mute 380
297 Pyrrhos and Kineas 380
On Drinking 382
298 The Third Cup of Wine 382
On Behaving Like Animals 383
299 The Different Stages of Life 383
300 The Different Kinds of People384
301 The Different Kinds of Women 384
Aesopic Fables 385
302 The Fox and the Crane 385
303 The Dog with a Piece of Meat 386
304 The Raven with a Piece of Meat 387
305 The King of the Apes 387
306 The Ape with Important Ancestors 388
307 The Sour Grapes 388
308 The Ant and the Cicada 389
309 The Lion's Share 390
310 The Race of the Tortoise and the Hare 390
311 The Lion and the Mouse 391
312 The Plump Dog 391
313 The Transformed Weasel 392
314 The Goose That Lays Golden Eggs 392
315 The Tortoise That Wishes to Fly 393
316 The King of the Frogs 393
317 The Astronomer 394
318 The Shepherd Who Cries "Wolf !" 394
319 "Here Is Rhodes!" 395
320 The Belly and the Feet 395
321 The Oak and the Reed 396
Short Fables 397
322 The Mountain in Labor 397
323 The Attentive Donkey 397
Chapter 8 Numskulls and Sybarites 398
Traditional Numskulls 398
324 Margites 398
325 Meletides 399
326 Koroibos 399
327 Morychos 399
328 Akko 399
329 The Foolish Kymaians 400
330 The Foolish Abderites 401
Other Numskulls 402
331 Carrying the Load 402
332 Acquiring Sense 403
333 Seeing the Doctor 404
334 The Trained Donkey 404
335 The Books 405
336 The Slave 405
337 A Call of Nature 405
338 The Twins 405
339 The Funeral 406
340 The Ball in the Well 406
341 The Educated Son 406
342 The Travelers 406
343 The Grateful Father 407
344 A Pair of Twins 407
345 The Fugitives 407
346 The Pillow 408
Wits 408
347 Too Healthy 408
348 What Does It Taste Like? 409
349 All in the Family 409
350 The Strongest Thing 409
351 Caesar's Soldiers Sing 410
Miscellaneous 410
352 Not at Home 410
353 The Portent 411
354 The Deaf Judge 412
355 The Scythian 413
356 The Cold Reading 413
357 The Covetous Man and the Envious Man 413
The Delicate Sybarites 414
358 Uncomfortable Sleep 415
359 The Suitor 415
360 Noise Policy 416
361 The Affliction of Work 416
362 Excursions to the Country 416
363 Chamber Pots 417
364 Piped Wine 417
365 Policy on Parties 417
366 Dancing Horses 417
Tall Tales 418
367 Topsy-Turvy Land 418
368 Frozen Speech 418
369 Thin Men 418
Appendix Across the Genres: Ancient Terms, Belief, and Relative Numbers 421
Notes on the Tales 433
Glossary 479
Bibliography 483
Ancient Sources 515
List of International Stories 521
Index 527

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File created: 3/8/2017

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