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Aesop's Fables   


entertained no anticipation of danger. Some boatmen sailing by
saw her, and taking a successful aim, mortally wounded her.
Yielding up her last breath, she gasped forth this lament: "O
wretched creature that I am! to take such precaution against the
land, and after all to find this seashore, to which I had come
for safety, so much more perilous."


The Shepherd and the Sea

A SHEPHERD, keeping watch over his sheep near the shore, saw the
Sea very calm and smooth, and longed to make a voyage with a view
to commerce. He sold all his flock, invested it in a cargo of
dates, and set sail. But a very great tempest came on, and the
ship being in danger of sinking, he threw all his merchandise
overboard, and barely escaped with his life in the empty ship.
Not long afterwards when someone passed by and observed the
unruffled calm of the Sea, he interrupted him and said, "It is
again in want of dates, and therefore looks quiet."


The Ass, the Cock, and the Lion

AN ASS and a Cock were in a straw-yard together when a Lion,
desperate from hunger, approached the spot. He was about to
spring upon the Ass, when the Cock (to the sound of whose voice
the Lion, it is said, has a singular aversion) crowed loudly, and
the Lion fled away as fast as he could. The Ass, observing his
trepidation at the mere crowing of a Cock summoned courage to
attack him, and galloped after him for that purpose. He had run
no long distance, when the Lion, turning about, seized him and
tore him to pieces.

False confidence often leads into danger.


The Mice and the Weasels

THE WEASELS and the Mice waged a perpetual war with each other,
in which much blood was shed. The Weasels were always the
victors. The Mice thought that the cause of their frequent
defeats was that they had no leaders set apart from the general
army to command them, and that they were exposed to dangers from
lack of discipline. They therefore chose as leaders Mice that
were most renowned for their family descent, strength, and
counsel, as well as those most noted for their courage in the
fight, so that they might be better marshaled in battle array and
formed into troops, regiments, and battalions. When all this was
done, and the army disciplined, and the herald Mouse had duly
proclaimed war by challenging the Weasels, the newly chosen
generals bound their heads with straws, that they might be more
conspicuous to all their troops. Scarcely had the battle begun,
when a great rout overwhelmed the Mice, who scampered off as fast
as they could to their holes. The generals, not being able to
get in on account of the ornaments on their heads, were all
captured and eaten by the Weasels.

The more honor the more danger.


The Mice in Council

THE MICE summoned a council to decide how they might best devise
means of warning themselves of the approach of their great enemy

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