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*Ba/brios), or BA'BRIAS (Βαβρίας), sometimes also called GA'BRIAS (Γαβρίας), who is not a different person from Babrius, as Bentley supposed, a Greek poet, who after the example of Socrates turned the Aesopean fables into verse. The emperor Julian (Ep. 90) is the first writer who mentions Babrius; but as some of Babrius's verses are quoted by Apollonius in his Homeric Lexicon (s. v. ἄειδε), though without mentioning his name, he lived in all probability before the time of Augustus. [APOLLONIUS, No. 5.] This is in accordance with the account of Avianus, who speaks (Praef.) of Babrius before Phaedrus.



The work of Babrius, which was in Choliambic verses [see p. 47b.], was called Μύθοι and Μυθίαμβοι, and was comprised in ten books according to Suidas (s. v. Βάβριος), or two volumes (volumina) according to Avianus. His version, which is one of no ordinary merit, seems to have been the basis of all the Aesopean fables which have come down to us in various forms. Later writers of Aesopean fables, such as Maximus Planudes, probably turned the poems of Babrius into prose, but they did it in so clumsy a manner, that many choliambic verses may still be traced in their fables, as Bentley has shewn in his dissertation on Aesop's fables. [AESOPUS, p. 48a.] Bentley was the first writer who called the attention of the learned to this fact, which was proved still more clearly by Tyrwhitt in his dissertation " De Babrio, Fabularum Aesopearum Scriptore," Lond. 1776, reprinted at Erlangen, 1785, ed. Harles.


To this dissertation de Babrio Tyrwhitt added the fragments of Babrius, which were but few in number and chiefly taken from Suidas; but several of his complete poems have been discovered in a Florentine and Vatican MS., and were first published by de Furia under the title of" Fabulae Aesopicae, quales ante Planudem ferebantur," Flor. 1809. They have also been edited by J. Gl. Schneider, " Aesopi Fabulae, cum Fabulis Babrii," Vratisl. 1812; by Berger, Βαβρίου μύθων χωλιαμβικῶν βιβλία τρία, &c., Monach. 1816; and by Knoch, "Babrii Fabulae et Fabularum Fragmenta," Halis Sax. 1835.

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