An Entertaining Tale of Quadrupeds is the first English verse translation of the Greek satirical poem Diegesis Paidiophrastos ton Zoon ton Tetrapodon. Written by an anonymous author in fourteenth-century Byzantium, this vernacular allegorical poem has long been recognized as a unique document, one that appears to have originated independently of comparable works in other traditions. A medieval Animal Farm, the story describes a convention of animals in which each beast vaunts its uses to humanity while denigrating others, resulting in a cataclysmic battle. The authors provide extensive textual analysis and notes on the form, style, and context of the poem.
Nick Nicholas is a research fellow in the Department of Linguistics and Applied Linguistics at the University of Melbourne, Australia, and a contributor to the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae project at the University of California, Irvine.George Baloglou is an associate professor of mathematics at the State University of New York, Oswego.