am sure than I can see, Mother!" In the desire to prove to him
his mistake, his Mother placed before him a few grains of
frankincense, and asked, "What is it?' The young Mole said, "It
is a pebble." His Mother exclaimed: "My son, I am afraid that you
are not only blind, but that you have lost your sense of smell.
The Herdsman and the Lost Bull
A HERDSMAN tending his flock in a forest lost a Bull-calf from
the fold. After a long and fruitless search, he made a vow that,
if he could only discover the thief who had stolen the Calf, he
would offer a lamb in sacrifice to Hermes, Pan, and the Guardian
Deities of the forest. Not long afterwards, as he ascended a
small hillock, he saw at its foot a Lion feeding on the Calf.
Terrified at the sight, he lifted his eyes and his hands to
heaven, and said: "Just now I vowed to offer a lamb to the
Guardian Deities of the forest if I could only find out who had
robbed me; but now that I have discovered the thief, I would
willingly add a full-grown Bull to the Calf I have lost, if I may
only secure my own escape from him in safety."
The Hare and the Tortoise
A HARE one day ridiculed the short feet and slow pace of the
Tortoise, who replied, laughing: "Though you be swift as the
wind, I will beat you in a race." The Hare, believing her
assertion to be simply impossible, assented to the proposal; and
they agreed that the Fox should choose the course and fix the
goal. On the day appointed for the race the two started
together. The Tortoise never for a moment stopped, but went on
with a slow but steady pace straight to the end of the course.
The Hare, lying down by the wayside, fell fast asleep. At last
waking up, and moving as fast as he could, he saw the Tortoise
had reached the goal, and was comfortably dozing after her
Slow but steady wins the race.
The Pomegranate, Apple-Tree, and Bramble
THE POMEGRANATE and Apple-Tree disputed as to which was the most
beautiful. When their strife was at its height, a Bramble from
the neighboring hedge lifted up its voice, and said in a boastful
tone: "Pray, my dear friends, in my presence at least cease from
such vain disputings."
The Farmer and the Stork
A FARMER placed nets on his newly-sown plowlands and caught a
number of Cranes, which came to pick up his seed. With them he
trapped a Stork that had fractured his leg in the net and was
earnestly beseeching the Farmer to spare his life. "Pray save
me, Master," he said, "and let me go free this once. My broken
limb should excite your pity. Besides, I am no Crane, I am a
Stork, a bird of excellent character; and see how I love and
slave for my father and mother. Look too, at my feathers--
they are not the least like those of a Crane." The Farmer
laughed aloud and said, "It may be all as you say, I only know
this: I have taken you with these robbers, the Cranes, and you
must die in their company."