Friday Fable: Aesop's “The Frogs and the Sun”*

Posted by jlubans on June 06, 2014

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Caption: Parasol hoisting frogs.

“On marriage of a knave of state,
Esop this fable did relate:
‘Report had thro' the marshes spread,
That Sol was on the point to wed;
The croaking tribe made such a clatter,
That Jove inquir'd what was the matter.
‘One Sun,’ a frighted Frog replies,
‘Consumes us, when our lake he dries:
Then what will be our wretched fate,
Should this new couple propagate!’"


Likewise, in one metropolis there were three major libraries. One of the directorships opened and was duly filled. Shortly after, the second library’s top job became vacant and, the decision-makers, for unknown reasons, hired the spouse of the first library director. Apparently, the threat of like-mindedness and the lack of diverse thinking, made little difference in the hiring decision. Shortly after, the third library’s executive job became vacant and that institution hired a former colleague of the first director who was also a good friend of the second director! I can well imagine the staff of these three libraries, like the frogs, were concerned about how these three similar personalities – none was particularly visionary or innovative - would influence the cooperative initiatives. Did these appointments help or hinder. Hard to say, but I would tend to lean toward the latter since all three were traditional in view and perspective. Why make these hires? Perhaps it was that each institution’s boss wanted to get the decision made and, after all, “it was just a library”, so what matter if the three were of a similar mindset?

*Source: Boothby, Brooke. Boothby, Brooke, Phaedrus, Aesop, and Marquard Gude. 1809. Fables and satires: with a preface on the Esopean fable. Edinburgh: Printed by George Ramsay and Company for Archibald Constable and Co. Available at Google Books.
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Caption: Sir Brooke Boothby, 1781 by Joseph Wright of Derby
Prof. Laura Gibbs introduced me to Mr. Boothby’s fables. Ms. Gibbs is an excellent source for the fable-phile and the aspiring fabulist. Here is one of her several sites dedicated to Aesop and other fable writers and translators.



@Copyright John Lubans 2014
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Comments

Posted by Miriam Holley on June 06, 2014  •  10:12:48

What City? What Libraries...
So right...just libraries...they're just the collection of humanities total knowlegde...they so don't matter. (not)...
That old trickle down theory is so much worse when everyone at the top conforms to every other ceo or directors ideas and views....and when iinstitutions leaders don't want to hire anyone who has better ideas or is brighter then they are...the top becomes dumbed down quickly and that trickle down effect beomes prevasive...

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