Pub. date: 2012 | Online Pub. Date: May 31, 2012 | DOI: 10.4135/9781452218458 | Print ISBN: 9781412981767 | Online ISBN: 9781452218458| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Aesop: Prehistory to 1400: Africa
Khonsura A. Wilson
Known through legend and literary interpretation, Aesop primarily has been depicted in history as a children's storyteller, and as a clothes horse for Victorian moral tales. Some have argued that the historical person of Aesop may have never existed. Concrete evidence of his existence is missing beyond Socrates's mention of his borrowing and retelling of Aesop's fables in Plato's Dialogue and Aristotle's imaginative construction of Aesop as a person. However, a content analysis of works commonly attributed to Aesop conducted by Richard Lobban suggests that Aesop not only existed but also suggests that in all probability he was an African in origin and more precisely, a Nubian Kummaji (folklorist). To begin, a general consensus exists on several facts. First, Aesop was born around the 6th century B.C.E. and died sometime around 546 B.C.E. Second, he was a native storyteller of Mesembria in the Greek mainland of Thrace. Third, he was ...