" Per Fortunas vestrosque Genios , sic ad meae senectutis spatia validi laetique veniatis , decepto seni subsistite meumque parvulum ab inferis ereptum canis meis reddite . Nepos namque meus et itineris huius suavis comes , dum forte passerem incantantem sepiculae consectatur arripere , delapsus in proximam foveam , quae fruticibus imis subpatet , in extremo iam vitae consistit periculo , quippe cum de fletu ac voce ipsius avum sibi saepicule clamitantis vivere illum quidem sentiam , sed per corporis , ut videtis , mei defectam valetudinem opitulari nequeam . At vobis aetatis et robori beneficio facile est subpetiari miserrimo seni puerumque illum novissimum successionis meae atque unicam stirpem sospitem mihi facere . "
‘May Fortune and your guardian spirits smile on you , ’ he sobbed , ‘may you be healthy and happy when you reach my years , only help a wretched old man , save my grandson from death , and spare him to my old grey head . My sweet comrade on this journey , he was trying to catch a sparrow singing in the hedge when he fell into a pit that yawned at its feet , and now he’s doomed to death , though I know he’s alive from his calls to me , and his weeping . I’m too weak to save him , as you see , but your youth and strength could easily aid a poor old man and save the youngest of my line , my only heir . ’
‘I implore you by your Fortunes and your Guardian Spirits , if you hope to reach my age in health and happiness , come to the aid of an old man in his bereavement , rescue my little boy from death and restore him to his white-haired grandfather . My grandson , my darling travelling-companion , was trying to catch a bird that was singing in the hedgerow , and fell into a yawning pit in the bottom of the thicket . Now he is in peril of his life ; I know he is alive , for I can hear him crying and calling " Grandfather " over and over again , but as you see I am too feeble in body to be able to rescue him . But you are young and strong , and it will be no trouble to you to help a poor old man and to restore to me this child , the last of my line and all the family I have left . ’