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Aesop was an Ancient Greek story-teller and slave, famed and cherished for his short fables that often involve personified animals. In the renowned collection of works that is Aesop's Fables, he weaves moral education and entertainment together into tales that have been enjoyed by many, many generations. A lot of the stories in Aesop's Fables, such as The Fox and the Grapes (giving us the term "sour grapes"), The Tortoise and the Hare, The North Wind and the Sun and The Boy Who Cried Wolf, are well-known across the world.
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AESOP'S FABLES (82 Fables)
The Cock and the Pearl The Frog and the Ox The Wolf and the Lamb Androcles The Dog and the Shadow The Bat, the Birds, and the Beasts The Lion's Share The Hart and the Hunter The Wolf and the Crane The Serpent and the File The Man and the Serpent The Man and the Wood The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse The Dog and the Wolf The Fox and the Crow The Belly and the Members The Sick Lion The Hart in the Ox-Stall The Ass and the Lapdog The Fox and the Grapes The Lion and the Mouse The Horse, Hunter, and Stag The Swallow and the Other Birds The Peacock and Juno The Frogs Desiring a King The Fox and the Lion The Mountains in Labour The Lion and the Statue The Hares and the Frogs The Ant and the Grasshopper The Wolf and the Kid The Tree and the Reed The Woodman and the Serpent The Fox and the Cat The Bald Man and the Fly The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing The Fox and the Stork The Dog in the Manger The Fox and the Mask The Man and the Wooden God The Jay and the Peacock The Fisher
The Shepherd's Boy The Miser and His Gold The Young Thief and His Mother The Fox and the Mosquitoes The Man and His Two Wives The Fox Without a Tail The Nurse and the Wolf The One-Eyed Doe The Tortoise and the Birds Belling the Cat The Two Crabs The Hare and the Tortoise The Ass in the Lion's Skin The Old Man and Death The Two Fellows and the Bear The Hare With Many Friends The Two Pots The Lion in Love The Four Oxen and the Lion The Bundle of Sticks The Fisher and the Little Fish The Lion, the Fox, and the Beasts Avaricious and Envious The Ass's Brains The Crow and the Pitcher The Eagle and the Arrow The Man and the Satyr The Milkmaid and Her Pail The Goose With the Golden Eggs The Cat-Maiden The Labourer and the Nightingale The Horse and the Ass The Fox, the Cock, and the Dog The Trumpeter Taken Prisoner The Wind and the Sun The Buffoon and the Countryman Hercules and the Waggoner The Old Woman and the Wine-Jar The Man, the Boy, and the Donkey The Fox and the Goat
The Cock and the Pearl
A cock was once strutting up and down the farmyard among the hens when suddenly he espied something shinning amid the straw. "Ho! ho!" quoth he, "that's for me," and soon rooted it out from beneath the straw. What did it turn out to be but a Pearl that by some chance had been lost in the yard? "You may be a treasure," quoth Master Cock, "to men that prize you, but for me I would rather have a single barley-corn than a peck of pearls."
Precious things are for those that can prize them.
The Wolf and the Lamb
Once upon a time a Wolf was lapping at a spring on a hillside, when, looking up, what should he see but a Lamb just beginning to drink a little lower down. "There's my supper," thought he, "if only I can find some excuse to seize it." Then he called out to the Lamb, "How dare you muddle the water from which I am drinking?"
"Nay, master, nay," said Lambikin; "if the water be muddy up there, I cannot be the cause of it, for it runs down from you to me."
"Well, then," said the Wolf, "why did you call me bad names this time last year?"
"That cannot be," said the Lamb; "I am only six months old."
"I don't care," snarled the Wolf; "if it was not you it wasyour father;" and with that he rushed upon the poor little Lamband .WARRA WARRA WARRA WARRA WARRA .ate her all up. But before she died she gasped out ."Any excuse will serve a tyrant."
The Dog and the Shadow
It happened that a Dog had got a piece of meat and was carrying it home in his mouth to eat it in peace. Now on his way home he had to cross a plank lying across a running brook. As he crossed, he looked down and saw his own shadow reflected in the water beneath. Thinking it was another dog with another piece of meat, he made up his mind to have that also. So he made a snap at the shadow in the water, but as he opened his mouth the piece of meat fell out, dropped into the water and was never seen more.
Beware lest you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow.
The Lion's Share
The Lion went once a-hunting along with the Fox, the Jackal, and the Wolf. They hunted and they hunted till at last they surprised a Stag, and soon took its life. Then came the question how the spoil should be divided. "Quarter me this Stag," roared the Lion; so the other animals skinned it and cut it into four parts. Then the Lion took his stand in front of the carcass and pronounced judgment: The first quarter is for me in my capacity as King of Beasts; the second is mine as arbiter; another share comes to me for my part in the chase; and as for the fourth quarter, well, as for that, I should like to see which of you will dare to lay a paw upon it."
"Humph," grumbled the Fox as he walked away with his tail between his legs; but he spoke in a low growl ."You may share the labours of the great, but you will not share the spoil."
The Wolf and the Crane
A Wolf had been gorging on an animal he had killed, when suddenly a small bone in the meat stuck in his throat and he could not swallow it. He soon felt terrible pain in his throat, and ran up and down groaning and groaning and seeking for something to relieve the pain. He tried to induce every one he met to remove the bone. "I would give anything," said he, "if you would take it out." At last the Crane agreed to try, and told the Wolf to lie on his side and open his jaws as wide as he could. Then the Crane put its long neck down the Wolf's throat, and with its beak loosened the bone, till at last it got it out.
"Will you kindly give me the reward you promised?" said theCrane.
The Wolf grinned and showed his teeth and said: "Be content. You have put your head inside a Wolf's mouth and taken it out again in safety; that ought to be reward enough for you."
Gratitude and greed go not together.
The Man and the Serpent
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