The word fable is derived from the Latin word fibula, which means "a story," and a derivative of the word fari, which means "to speak." The fable is a literary device that can be defined as a concise and short story intended to provide a moral lesson at the end.
In literature, it is described as a didactic lesson given through some kind of animal story. In prose and verse, a fable is described through plants, animals, forces of nature, and inanimate objects giving them human attributes in which they demonstrate a moral lesson at the end.
Characteristics of a fable
A fable is intended to provide a moral story.
They present with anthropomorphic characteristics, such as the ability to speak and reason.
Fables personify animal characters.
Examples of fables in literature
Example # 1: The fox and the crow (from Aesop's fables)
“A crow was sitting on a branch of a tree with a piece of cheese in its beak when a fox observed it and he put his wits to work to discover some way to get the cheese. Arriving and standing under the tree, he looked up and helped himself, 'What a noble bird I see above me! Her beauty is unsurpassed ... "The cheese came down, of course, and the fox snatched it and said," You have a voice, madam, I understand: what you want is mind. «
Aesop is probably the most notable author of famous examples of fable. Aesopian fables put the emphasis on people's social communication and therefore the morality he draws deals with the realities of life. In this excerpt, Aesop gives a moral lesson that flatterers should not be trusted: Animal Farm (By George Orwell)
“Well, comrades, what is the nature of our life? Let's be honest: our lives are miserable, arduous and short. We are born, we just get so much nourishment How will the breath hold in our bodies ... and the moment our usefulness comes to an end ... No animal in England knows the importance of happiness or leisure after it is one year old. No animal is free in England. The life of an animal is misery and slavery… ”
Here the old major is talking to other animals. It is represented as th The story of the development and emergence of Soviet communism through an animal fable. He advises animals to fight against humans, telling them that rebellion is the only possible way out of their miserable situation.
Example # 3: The Ancient Sailor's Frost (By S. Coleridge)
Renewal of your smooth response —
What makes that ship move so fast?
What is the ocean doing? "
" Still a slave to his master,
The ocean has no explosion ...
Even the moon is projected ...
Look! Look! (I yelled) She doesn't turn anymore ...
"No breeze, no tide,
Steady with keel upright!"
The voices in this poem explain the ship in motion without waves or wind. There is a supernatural force at work. This literary play is one of the well-written examples of fable teaching about repentance, redemption, and sin. The killing of a bird symbolizes original sin.
Example 4: Gulliver's Travels (by Jonathan Swift)
“I tried to get up but couldn't move: because when I happened to be on my back, I noticed that my arms and legs were up each side were firmly attached to the floor; and my long and thick hair was tied up in the same way… In a short time I felt something living moving on my left leg, gently moving forward over my chest and almost to my chin… ”
Gulliver's Travels is One Mixture of political allegory, moral fable, pseudo utopia and social anatomy. In this excerpt, Captain Gulliver comes to an unknown place among strange creatures that speak a strange language. This is a kind of modern fable intended to mock political vices.
Function of Fable
The purpose of writing fables is to convey a moral doctrine and message. Fables also give readers a chance to laugh at people's follies, and they can be used for the purpose of satire and criticism. They are very helpful in teaching children good lessons through examples. However, in literature, fables are used on a much broader level for didactic purposes.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw