Golden Ass

The romance of Apuleius, written in the second century, and called the golden because of its excellency. It contains the adventures of Lucian, a young man who, being accidentally metamorphosed into an ass while sojourning in Thessaly, fell into the hands of robbers, eunuchs, magistrates, and so on, by whom he was ill-treated; but ultimately he recovered his human form. Boccaccio has borrowed largely from this admirable romance; and the incidents of the robbers' cave in Gil Blas are taken from it.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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