¶ A schole of wise Conceytes, Wherin as euery Con­ceyte hath wit, so the most haue much mirth, Set forth in common pla­ces by order of the Alphabet.

Translated out of diuers Greke and Latine Wryters, by THOMAS BLAGE student of the Queenes Colledge in Cambridge.

Printed at London, by Henrie Binneman, dwel­ling in Knight rider streate, at the signe of the Marmayd. CVM PRIVILEGIO.

The names of the Authors vsed in this Booke.

  • LAurentius Abstemius.
  • Aulus Gellius.
  • Plinius Secundus Nouocomensis.
  • Nicolaus Gerbellius Phorcensis.
  • Petrus Crinitus.
  • Angelus Politianus.
  • Aesopus.
  • Gabrias.
  • Gulielmus Gowdanus.
  • Anianus.
  • Ioannes Antonius Campanus.
  • Horatius.
  • Gerardus Lew.
  • Poggius.
  • Bebelius.
  • Brasitanus.
  • Adrianus Barlandus.
  • Erasmus Roterodamus.
  • Hermanus.
  • Rimitius.

Virtutū non minus quàm literarum splendore clarissimo viro D. Guilielmo Chester equiti aurato, salutem, & in agnita veritate constantem zelum, à Domino IESV, vnico omnium piorum seruatore, Thomas Blage Cantabrigiensis optat, atque ex ani­mo precatur.

OMnes qui hac tempestate elucubrationum suarum, fructu aliquo Reipub. pro­desse volunt (vir ornatis­sime) id mihi polliceri vi­dentur, imò praestare me­ritò debent, vti omnino a­liquid in lucem proferant, quod ad Christiani hominis institutum, aut alioqui ad bonos mo­res componendos pertineat. Me verò si quis­piam rogitet cur [...] potissimum transfer­re aggrediar, huic ita responsum volo: Quia tātum in se [...] disciplinae ad corruptissimos nostri soeculi mores emēdan­dos complectantur, adeo vt vel minimi quispi­am iuditij, in his aliquantisper versatus, melio­ra prosequi, deteriora fugere discat: at (que) hoc citra laborem, quod in locos communes redi­gantur, & vnicui (que) rei sua Fabula (quantum [Page] potui) vere accommodetur. Proinde amicorum praecibus compulsus, hoc opus aggredi, absolu­tum (que) in lucem aedere, Patronum aliqucm mihi quaerere decreui, sub cuius angusto nomi­ne hic Libellus exiret: cum (que) animi oculos, huc, illuc, non parum volutassem, tu mihi tan­dem prae alijs magis arrisisti, tum nonnullis de causis, quas impresentiarum omitto, tum quia inter caeteros clarissimae huius Ciuitatis orna­tissimes vires, nominis tui splendor benè audi­at: saxit (que) omnipotens Deus, vt indies, quoad fieri potest, vna cum nomine cuncta foeliciter cedant. Accipe igitur pro tuo in nos studio, haec (licet exigua) & remissis interim grauioribus curis, haec leniora perlege. Gratius enim animi mei [...], aut luculentius meae ergate obseruantiae symbolum dare nequeo. Superest vt Christum Iesum comprecemur, tibi vt & vitam, & incolumitatem largia­tur, & istum animum quem in­didit, semper in maius proue­hat. Ʋale. Cantabrigiae vigesimo Decembris. Anno partae salutis 1569.

Ad eundem [...].


A Dialogue betwene the Author and the Printer.

AS I did musing lie,
with sundrie thoughtes opprest,
Séeking to salue my carefull minde,
of paine to be redrest:
And pondring how my youth
full ydiely I had spent,
In scilence only wrapped vp,
my minde it did torment.
From darknesse vnto light
I thought it best to call,
By setting forth some little booke,
which profite might vs all.
And that I did intende
is brought now to effect.
At ydle houres I did it penne
as time would me direct.
The worke you plainely sée,
frende Printer what it is,
Declare if printing it deserue,
and what there is amis.
Your meaning I perceiue,
your purpose I allowe,
[Page] In that you are so diligent
to prosecute your vowe.
And as in ages all,
those haue their prayses due,
Which painfully do runne their race,
and idlenesse eschue:
So can I not mislyke
your noble enterprise:
Which séeke to helpe your countreymen,
with this your fyne deuise.
But shall I tell you playne,
herein what is my mynde?
Be thinke this worke was done before,
and it in print I fynde:
For Esope as you knowe,
already englisht is:
And what doth yours, but taste of him?
naught do I sée but his.
This briefly vnderstande,
that Esope is not last
In this my booke, nor only he
alone doth stande agast:
But sundry writers else
aboute him here do stande,
Both wittie, learned, eloquent,
[Page] as hath ben tane in hande.
Besides, if well you marke,
comparyng that with myne,
It is as neare as East to Weast,
and drosse to Syluer fine.
Vncomely tales in that are founde,
and most absurde to reade,
Of reason voyde, of mirth bereft,
to no good ende they leade,
No head nor foote in them is had,
but set confusedly,
On Esope falsly forged tales,
what man can it denye?
As in the lyfe of Xanthus wyfe,
and others he doth write
So rudely, falsly, foolishly,
how then should this delite?
Of Esope that I write,
the Greeke text doth allowe.
Dissenting cleane from that you thinke,
let this content you nowe.
In common place it is reduced,
applying as I myght,
So truely, vnto euery thing
his proper place and right.
From nintéene authors else,
I haue selected out,
[Page] Their fine deuise, their sayings wise,
their pleasant déedes and stout.
The truth hereof you heare,
first trie, then iudgement giue:
If contrary you finde to this
then do not me beleue.
I haue compared since
your doings vnto his,
And contrarie to that I thought,
I fynde that nowe it is:
Besides vncomely tales,
and falsly forged Fables,
Wherwith his booke replenisht is,
perceyue I many bables.
For yours and his do farre
in euery case dissent,
I sée from whom you doe deriue,
your doings and intente.
To answer your demaund
full readie am I prest,
And will hereafter when you list,
accomplishe your request.

To the gentle Reader, in the commendation of Fables.

AS I reuolued in my minde the sundrie kindes of Wri­ters, which for the profit of Man haue put in remem­brance their imaginations, they that haue writ Fables are to be accoun­ted with the reste: for they haue not onely wonderfully delighted the harts of men, but also haue more allured them to doe thinges both good and profitable with their Fables, than Philosophers with their preceptes. For they with such a sweetnesse do so pierce the hartes of the Readers, and by similitudes do declare (whiche are of much force to moue affection) what men ought to take, and what to refuse, that thereby they are compelled, against their wils to agree vnto them. For the minde is disdaynfull to heare, neyther will it easely abyde things profitable and ho­nest, excepte they bee poudered with some merry ieste Hereunto beareth witnesse a certein Orator of Athens, who on a tyme speaking to the Athenians, when he per­ceyued them lesse attentiue, required them [Page] that they would vouchsafe to heare a Fable: they were contented: then he began thus: Ceres, the Swallowe and the Egle sometime iorneyed togither, when they were come to a riuer, the Swallowe flue ouer, and the Eele swam through the riuer: when he hadde so sayd he held his peace, then they asked him what Ceres didde? Your Gods (quod he) are offended at you whiche will not heare them that counsell you for your profit, but if they tell any tales ye heare them willingly. What force fables are of to moue affection, I could declare by many examples, yet will I pro­pound but three. The inhabitants of Samos would haue put their ruler to death, whome Aesope dissuaded saying: As a Foxe passed ouer a riuer, he was driuen into a ditch wher he stucke so fast in the mudde, that he could not escape, whō the flies stinged: the Hedge­hog seing him there, moued with compas­sion, asked him if he shoulde driue the flies from him. No (quod he) for these are full with my bloud and can litle trouble me, but if thou shouldest dryue them away, other hunger sterued flies wil occupie their romes, and suck out all the bloud that is left within me. The like shall happen to you O Sami­ans, [Page] for if ye slaye your Ruler whiche is so wealthie, ye must needes chose others, which whiles they enriche them selues, shall poll you of all that this man hath left: wherwith all the Samians being moued, left off their purpose. By the like meanes was Tiberius Caesar persuaded, when he appointed for e­uery day Magistrates, wherevpon (as Iose­phus telleth) the Countrey of Iurie was go­uerned by Cratus and Pilatus onely by the space of twentie yeares. For (as Statius saith) he that ruleth but a litle while, sheweth smal fauour to the people. The Himerians som­time minded to chose Captaine of their ar­mie Phalaris the tyrant of Agrigentum, whome Stesichorus the Poet with this Fable discouraged from their purpose, saying: A horse fed alone in a medow, at length came a Harte thither and spoyled it: wherevpon the Horse tooke the aduise of man, by what meane he might be reuenged, to whome the man sayde: If thou wilt take a bytte in thy mouth and suffer me armed to gette vpon thy backe, whose counsell he followed, and by his helpe put the Harte to flight and be­came the conquerer, but from that tyme forth he could not rid his mouth from the [Page] byt nor the man from his backe. Euen so (sayde Stesichorus) the like shall happen to you, if ye chose Phalaris your captayne, for your enimies ye shall subdue, but ye shall be in bondage to this Tyraunt for euer: with which wordes the Himerians being discou­raged, forsoke the counsell to chose suche a Captayne, what time the people of Rome separated themselues from the Senators, bi­cause they payd tribute and were combred with warfares, did not Agrippa Menenius turne them from their purpose with this fa­ble? Sometime (quoth he) ye Romaines, the members of man perceyuing the belly to be slouthfull, fell at variance with her and de­termined to giue her no longer any succor. It happened, that, bicause they denied her nourishment, they became faynt, whervpon they were at one againe. In like maner the Senate and people of Rome are as the belly and members, whiche neede one of anothers helpe, and as by discord they perishe, so by concord they are of strength: By whiche Tale the people turned from their purpose and became friends again with the Senate. Therfore not without good cause both the Greeke and Latin Poets, as Hesiodus and [Page] Horace, haue mingled such Fables amongst their workes, and also the chiefest and fa­mous Philosophers, as Plato, Aristotle, and Plutarche, with many moe, haue highly co­mended them, whose opinion was, that they much auayled to the instruction of a moral and ciuill lyfe: wherefore Leouicenus and Ʋalla, of late writers the best lerned, did trā ­slate Fables out of Greke into Latin, which they knew would be to their prayse, and to the delight and profite of others: Neyther were they deceyued, for they are dayly redde of most learned men. I can not therefore perceyue, why by translating these Fa­bles, I should be defrauded of the prayse due to me, whiche other haue had, excepte we be so spitefull, that to vs that is not lawful, which with great commendation to the Grecians and Lati­nistes is allowed. Fare well.

¶ The firste Fable, of the Penance of the Wolfe, the Foxe, and the Asle.

THe Wolfe, the Foxe, and Abuse of the simple. the Asse sometyme iournied togyther towardes Rome, to obtayne remission of theyr sinnes: In the way (bycause they thought the Pope woulde be other­wyse occupied, that he might not intende them) they agréed to be shriuen one of an other, and to suffer Penance at their dis­cretion. The Wolfe therfore made hys confession to the Foxe in this manner: That he sawe a sowe which had .xij. pigs, the which walked alone in the fields, wal­lowing in fatnesse, and suffered hir pigs at home to starue: wherfore he deuoured the sowe, bycause of hir heynous offence in forsaking hir yong ones: and after, be­ing moued to pitie, he killed also the pigs, to ridde them out of their payne, and eate them vp: This he tolde with teares, de­siring to know what penance he shoulde doo therfore. In fayth (quod the Foxe) thy [Page 2] fault is not great, say once a Pater noster and then thou shalt be pardoned. Straight after, the Foxe began his confession thus: A countryman had a Cocke of the game, which bet and vanquished all other cocks néere about, who with his shril crowing, troubled in euery quarter, not onely the hole, but also the sicke persons, especially those which had the headake, whose pride I could not well away with: as I founde him therfore on a tyme abroade with the hens, I caught him, and caried him awaye to my hole, where I deuoured him: for which déed the Hens kackled against me, & troubled me with their crying: I there­fore to reuenge the iniurie done vnto me, tore manye of them in pieces and eate them: herein I confesse that I offended, therfore I require pardon. Herevnto the Wolfe sayd: Thou didst well in qualify­ing the noyse and pride of the Cocke and Hens, and therfore it is but a small fault, yet will I ioyne thée thys penance, That the thrée frydayes following, thou eate no fleshe, if thou canst get none: for I wil shewe thée as much fauoure, as thou didst to mée. Well nowe Sir sayde they to the [Page 3] Asse, let vs heare thy confession, who be­gan thus: My moyling & drudgery which I endure, is not vnknowen to you my Lords, as in carying of corne sacks, stone, woode and water, yet once I offended, whereof I repented me ful oft: For a ser­uaunt of my Lordes, apointed ruler ouer me, being once a cold, a strawe appeared oute of hys shoo, whiche I snatched a­way from hym, whereby he tooke greate harme and colde of his féete. Therfore be mercifull vnto me, and ioyne me some penance. But they sayd, what haste thou done thou thefe? Mary fye on thée, by thy meanes that seruant had such hurte of his féete, that we thinke he is dead thereof, whereby thy soule is damned, and there­fore thy bodye ought not to escape scotte frée, then they killed and deuoured him.

Morall. The mighty and riche men in lyke maner do pardon one another, but to the poore they are harde harted and inexorable.

2 Of the Spider and the Gowte.

A Spider nigh wéeried with continuall Abūdanc [...] sometyme [...] perillous. laboure, ceassed of hys woorke & wal­ked [Page 4] abroade for disport: whom the Goute met, and accompanied as fast as he could, though it were with muche payne: when that dayes iourney was nigh at a pointe, they approched neere to a little town cal­led Tuche, where they determined to séeke fit lodging for their purpose. The Spider tooke litle héede but turned into the house of an excéeding riche man, where on eue­ry side he set vp his streamers. Thē were straight at hande, those lyke Diuels in a playe, which cast downe his webs, and as fast as he set them vp in any parte of the house, they were swept downe: he coulde not worke so closely, but it was founde out, such was his miserie, that in a house of so much wealth and abundance, he only wanted and was thrust downe. But the Goute went like a begger, (whiche cau­sed him to be the longer without lodging) at length he gotte him to the cottage of a poore man, where when he had layde him downe to reste, it is not to be tolde what miserie he endured: his supper was coorse bread, and a Cup of cold water to drinke, when he was drye: hys bed to resté hys wéerie bones vppon, was a harde boorde [Page 5] strewed without either boughs or grasse, but thinly with a litle strawe. I need not shewe, how ill agréed so harde a bed and so rude an hoste, to so tender limbes, and to his skin as soft as silke. When the day starre was scarse risen, the Goute and the Spider mette againe. Then the Spider first declared his nights yll reste, and how ofte he shifted his place: somtime vpbrai­ding the Maister with too much nicenesse, sometyme with the double diligēce of the swéepers. Ah (quod the Goute) the po­uertie of myne hoste is incredible: for if I had leisure, I could shew thee spots both black and blew, that my bed as harde as the Adamant, hath imprinted in my softe skin. Then they tooke counsaile thus once agayn, That the Spider should goo to the poore mans cottage, and the Goute to the riche mans house, wherevnto they bothe agréed. When it waxed darke, they came neere to a Citie, and the Goute remem­bring well hys appointment, faire and softly went into an excéeding riche mans house, where he hid him self: whom when the Maister had scarse sée ne, Iesu GOD, wt what harty good will, what kindnesse, [Page 6] and with what names dyd he entertayne him: straightway, he was layde vppon beds of Doune, hys bolsters stuffed with soft partriche feathers. I will not speake of the wynes, as swéete & darke wynes, wynes of Lesbus and Campania, birdes that féede on grapes, phesants, and partie coloured birds: to conclude, there was no kinde of pleasure that his fantasie lacked. The Spider went into a poore mans cot­tage and began hys webs on euery side, from wall to wall he hanged them vp, he followed his businesse with hande & féete, he brake it downe and sette it vp agayne, and that he beganne he ended: and to tel you at a woorde, he was Lorde and King alone, crafte and pollicie he feared none, for his building was so high, that he was without the reche of a broome. Not long after the Gowte spake with the Spider, to whom he magnified his pleasures, hys happinesse and riches: The Spider lyke­wise wonderfully praysed hys kingdome and libertie in building: They concluded therfore, that whyther so euer they iour­neyd, the Gowte should lodge at the riche mans house, and the Spider at the poore [Page 7] mans cottage.

Mor. Some sorte of men spéede bet­ter in some place than others, and rich mens houses are a mansion place for disseases: but where least riches are, there is most libertie.

3 Of an Asse, the Trumpeter, and a Hare, the Messanger.

THe Lyon King of foure féeted beastes, Abiectes. hauing warre with the Foules, sette his armie in aray, ready to ioyne battaill with them: whom the Beare asked what furderance the sluggish Asse, or the feare­full Hare would be, to winne the fielde, bycause he sawe them amongst the other Souldiours. He aunswered hym: The Asse with the sounde of hys Trumpette, shall encourage the Souldiours to fighte: and the Hare, bycause of hys swiftnesse, shall be a Messanger.

Mor. None is so vile, but he is good for some thing.

4 Of an old man.

A Certen deuoute man counsailled an Abstinēce olde man to leaue of the luftes of the [Page 8] fleshe, wherevnto he hadde bene outrage­ously gyuen. He aunswered him: Holly Father, I will obey your reuerende and holesome preceptes, for I perceyue that Venerie doth much hurte me, neyther am I able to followe that trade any longer.

Mor. Many abstayne from vyces, wherein they are nooseled, not for the loue of God or goodnesse, but bycause of infirmitie, and feare of punishment.

5 Of the Shepherd and the Sea.

AS a shéepherd kept his flocke néere the Sea side, and saw it calme, he desired Affliction. to be a Marchant venturer, wherevppon he solde his shéepe and bought Dates, and wayed his Anker. It happened, that a so­dayne tempeste arose, and that the shippe was in daunger of drowning, so that they were fayne to lighten it of all the burden, scarse able to escape emptie: Shortly af­ter, as one passed by on the Sea shore (for then by chaunce it was calme) he mar­uelled to sée it so still, wherevpon he said, The Sea longeth againe for Dates, and therfore it is so calme.

Mor. Miserie maketh a man warier.

6 Of an Heremité and a Souldiour.

A Certen Heremite, being a man of Agrement perforce. godly liuing, exhorted a Souldiour to leaue of the warfare in this world, which waye very few withoute offending God and hurte of their soule, do walke in, and to gyue him selfe to quietnesse, and pre­pare for his soules health. I will Father (quod the Souldier) do as ye will me, but truthe is, that in these dayes Souldiours maye neyther demaunde their wages, though it be very small, ne yet take any praie.

Mor. Many for sake their wicked ly­uing, bycause they can vse it no lōger.

7 Of the Foxe and the Bramble.

AS a Foxe climbed a hedge, hys féete Ayde. slipped, who (as he was falling) caught holde on a bramble to staye hym: wherefore when he hadde torne hys féete with the prickes thereof, being in payne, he sayd to the Bramble: woo is me, for I came to thée for helpe, who haste hurte mée worse: not so (quod the Briar) thou wast deceyued, for I catche euery thing, and thinkest thou to lay holde on me?

[Page 10] Mor. Some are so foolishe as to re­quire ayde of those whiche naturally are bent to hurte.

8 Of a Wagtayle and a Phesant.

THe Wagtayle wente to the Phesant and sayd: Ah wretche, why doest thou Accusing an other. not wype thyne eyes but lettest them cō ­tinually stande with water? the stenche of thyne eyes make thée lothesome. The Phesant herewith being wrothe, aun­swered, How darest thou check me, which art so vyle an outcaste? Thy tayle hath the palsy, and art thou busie to note my fault? Go mende thy owne first, and then mayst thou better heale me. The Wag­tayle hearing this, departed ashamed.

Mor. Hée that will condemne an o­ther, must first be cleare him selfe.

9 Of the Mise and the Frogs.

THe Mise on a tyme contended with the Frogs for the kingdome of the Ambition. Marshes, wherevppon they proclamed o­pen warre. The battaill being ioyned, at the first onset they behaued themselues so valiauntly, that the victorie was doutful. [Page 11] The wyly Mouse lurking in the grasse, priuilie as it were oute of an Ambushe­ment, assauted the Frogge. But the frog being of strength more puissaunt, incou­rage and leaping more valiaunt, with o­pen warre prouoked hys enimie: Their speares were bulrushes. It happened, as they were fighting, that a kight espied them a farre of, who incontinently made spéede vnto them: but these noble warri­ours, being earnest in fighting, & nothing regarding themselues, were snatched vp, and torne in pieces by the Kight.

Mor. The lyke happeneth to sediti­ous Citizens, whiche being inflamed with the greedie lustes of bearing rule, whiles they stryue eyther with other, who shal be hed officer, do hazard their goods, and commonly their liues.

10 Of the beastes and the birds.

THere was sometyme a battaille bet­wene Ambo­dexter. the beastes and the birds, the vi­ctorie was vncertain, for both hoped wel, yet much feare and daunger was, on ey­ther party. The Batte thinking the birds to be the weaker side, left their companie, [Page 12] and tooke parte with their enimies. The birds by the conducting and gouernement of the Egle wonne the fielde. The Batte was condemned for a runawaye, and ba­nished the companie of all birds, and that from thenceforth he shoulde neuer flye by day lighte, and this was the onely cause, that the Battes flie but by night.

Mor. He that will not take parte of the sowre, shall not taste of that which is sweete.

11 Of the Pecocke and the Nightingale.

THe Pecocke complayned to Iuno, Si­ster and wyfe to Iupiter, bycause the All things as god will. Nightingale song so swéete, and she hir­selfe for hir horsenesse, was a bywoorde to all men. To whome Iuno sayde: Euery one hath his propre gifte of GOD: The Nightingale in singing, but thou in co­lours of feathers passest all other birdes, euery man muste be contente with hys estate.

Mor. What God sendeth, receyue it thankfully, neyther seeke thou further, for God doth nothing vnaduisedly.

12 Of a yong man that song at the bu­riall of hys mother.

A Certen man wepte and lamented for All things not decent. his wyfe being caried to burying, but hys sonne did sing: whom his Father re­buked, as he had ben madde that he would sing when hys mother went to buriall, whereas he oughte with him to be heauy and lamente. Why Father (quod he) if thou haue hyred these Priestes to sing, why arte thou angry with mée that sing for nothing? That is no parte of thy of­fice sayd his Father, but belongeth to the Priest.

Mor. All things are not séemely for all men.

13 Of Heauen and Earth.

ON a tyme Heauen poured on Earthe Anger. many stormes, lightning, and thun­dring, wherewith he oppressed it. But she being angry, called the Aire to hir, and sayd Brother I praye thée meddle not be­twixt Heauen and me, for I meane to o­uerthrowe him, bycause he hath wrought me such iniurie, that I would fayne by all meanes be reuenged. Ah sister (quod the [Page 14] Aire) do not so, but pacifie thy wrath, for though that Heauē haue vexed thée now, you shal an other time be mery togyther. Yet Earth being impatient, woulde not yelde, but armed him selfe and began too warre with heauen. The aire beholding that, sent such a darke miste, yt the earthe coulde not discerne where heauen was. This darknesse continued so long be­twene heauen and earth, till the earthes fury was past: after which time the aire sent oute his windes, whiche draue away the mist.

Mor. All men ought to quenche fire, and not to kindle it.

14 Of a Lyon in loue with a Coun­treymans daughter.

A Lyon enamoured with a Countrey­mans Armed alwayes. daughter, desired hir greatly, whervpon he requested hir father to giue hir to him in mariage. What (quod the man) should I mary my daughter to a beaste? Then the Lyon frowned & grin­ded his téeth at him, wherewith the coun­treyman being afraid, went from his for­mer talke, & sayd: I would gladly match


[Page 17] grée, that as I occupie the daye, so thou maist runne thy race in the night. Let vs obey oure Creator, and be not lofty ouer me, but suffer mée to gyue light in the daye, and to preserue the good creatures of the Lorde. The Moone herewith beyng more vexed, departed in a chafe, and cal­led to hir the starres, of whiche she gathe­red a great armie, and beganne battaile with the Sunne, against whom she shot hir arrowes, and endeuored with hir dartes to stryke him. But the Sunne be­ [...] aboue hir and at the vauntage, came downe, and with a swoorde deuided the Moone in two, & threw down the starres, saying: In lyke maner I will vse thée, as often as thou arte rounde: whereof (as reporte goeth) it came to passe, that the Moone continueth not alwayes full, and that the starres do vse to fall. The Moone therfore hauing the ouerthrowe, was a­shamed and sayde: Better it is, when I am full to be deuided, than altogyther to be abolished.

Mor. Lykewyse many proude per­sons would be Rulers alone, and can not abyde to haue any their better or [Page 18] lyke to them.

17 Of the Spyder and the Swallowe.

A Spider offended with the Swallow, Attempt not aboue thy capaci­tie. bycause she deuoured the flies which were his meate, hanged vp hys webbes afore the hole, (from whence the Swal­lowe should flie) to take hir. The Swal­low flew forth and caried away ye webbe with the weauer. Then the Spider han­ging in the aire and perceyuing his death to be at hande, sayde: Iustly haue I thys deserued, which did thinke to catch great birds, when without great labor I could scarse get the smallest thing that flieth.

Mor. Attempt nothing aboue thy ca­pacitie.

18 Of a Dogge and a Wolfe.

AS a Dogge slept in a court before the house of hys maister, a Wolfe came Atten­dance. sodenly and caught hym: whome, as he would haue killed, the Dogge besought, saying: Good maister spare me nowe by­cause I am leane & thinne as thou séest, but if thou wilt tary, there shall be with­in these fewe dayes a great mariage kept [Page 19] at my Lordes, where I will so fill me and make me so fat, that then I shall doe thée more good. The Wolfe crediting his wordes, let him goo. Shortly after, the Wolfe came and founde the dog sléeping vpon the house toppe, to whom he called as he stoode beneath, willing him to per­forme his promisse: Nay verily (quod the Dog) but if from henceforth thou finde me sléeping without doores, tary not at all vpon hope of any mariage.

Mor The burnt hand euer after fea­reth the fire.

19 Of the Asse and the Foxe.

AN Asse put on a Lyons skinne and Bablers. walked abroade, putting all other beastes in feare, who on a tyme séeing a Fox, endeuoured to make him also afray­ed. But hée (for by chaunce he heard him braye) sayd to him: Thou knowest well that I would haue trembled at thée, if I had not heard thy braying.

Mor. Some vnlearned men whiche outwardly beare coūtenance, through their babling are reproued.

20 Of the Egle and the Pye.

THe Pye sometyme desired the Egle, to make him one of his friends of hys housholde, bycause the beauty of hys bo­dy deserued it, and also the redinesse of his speach to do messages: I woulde so doo, sayd the Egle, but I feare least that which I speak within doores, thou woul­dest preache it abroad on the house tops.

Mor. Keepe no bablers nor teltales in thy house.

21 Of a Nightingale fearing the Kite.

A Nightingale espying a Kyte flying abroad in the aire, & making a great crying was sore afrayde, to whome the Tyrustie sayde: Feare not sister, for this preparation to fight & these threatnings will light at length, eyther on a little mouse, or a chicken, we must take héede of the Hanke, whose gripes we shal first féele, ere we heare his voyce.

Mor. Quiet and close men are more to be dreaded, than threatners & great pratlers.

22 Of a Countreyman that would passe ouer a Ryuer.

A Coūtryman ready to passe a streame, which by chaunce was sodenly rysen, with late rayne that fell, sought the shal­low. When he had assayed that parte of the Riuer which was calmest, he founde it déeper than he supposed: agayn, where it was roughest, there he foūd it shallow­est, than he bethought hym whyther he might committe hys life to the calmest place of the water, or to the roughest.

Mor. Dread those lesse whiche are full of wordes and threatnings, than those that say nothing.

23 Of a Harte and a Vyne.

A Hart escaping the hunters, lay hidde Benefa­ctors. vnder a vine. When they were a litle past hir, she supposing she lay safe, began to féede on the vine leaues. Which being stirred, the Hunters returned: and iud­ging (as it was in déede) some beaste to lurke vnder the leaues, they with their arrowes slew the harte: who as she lay a dying, sayd thus: Rightly am I serued, for I ought not to haue hurte that which [Page 22] saued me.

Mor. They which do any wrong to their benefactors, are punished of god.

23 Of a man bitten with a Dog.

A Certen man being bitten by a Dog, wente aboute séeking for helpe. At Benefits yll bestowed. length one met hym, who as soone as he vnderstood what he would, sayde to him: If thou wouldest be healed, thou shalt néed no surgion: only let ye dog which bit thée licke the bloud from thy sore, for bet­ter remedie than this can not be founde. The other smyling at him sayd: If I do so, I shall be bitten of Dogs dayly more and more.

Mor. Naughty men hauing recey­ued good turnes, are the sooner ready to render displeasure.

24 Of an Asse that serued an vnkinde Maister

AN Asse serued a certen man many Benefites il rewarded yeares, in which time he neuer offen­ded him. It happened afterwarde, being heauy laden, that he stumbled in a rough way, and fell vnder hys burthen. Then his cruell Maister bette him sore, and in [Page 23] spite of his harte forced him to ryse, cal­ling him a slouthfull and sluggish beast: but this poore wretch thought thus with him selfe: Miserable is my estate, which haue happened to so vnkinde a Maister, for though I haue serued him a long time without displeasing him, yet doth he not forgyue me this one faulte, in recompēce of the good seruice that I haue done him.

Mor. This Fable is against those, which forgette the benefites that they haue receyued, and greuously punishe the least offence of their benefactors toward them done.

25 Of the Mouse that set the Kight at libertie.

A Mouse espied the Kight taken in a Foulers grin, on whom he toke com­passion, (though he were hys moste eni­mie) and gnewe the knots in pieces, and set him at libertie. The Kight remem­bring the good turn no lōger than it was in doing: When he perceyued him selfe loose, layd holde on the poore Mouse, and with his talents tore him in pieces.

Mor. Wicked men in like manner [Page 24] are wont to recompence theyr bene­factors.

26 Of a Husbandman pricked by a Bee.

A Husbandman being stoong by a Bée, maruelled that oute of the selfe same Benefites. mouth so swéete iuyce procéeded; and so grieuous a sting. The Bée aunswered, the more beneficiall I am, ye more I hate them, which do me wrong.

Mor. The more good men doo, the lesse iniurie they endure.

27 Of the tree Abrotanum and the Hare.

THe propertie of Abrotanum, is to drawe oute any thing that sticketh fast, with the helpe of Auxangia. Wher­fore on a tyme came a Hare halting to him, for a thorne which stuck in his foote, and sayde: O Phisitian both of body and soule, take pitie on me and helpe me, and forthwith shewed his right foote. This trée being moued with compassion, put him selfe vpon the wounde, brought oute the thorne and healed it. Wherfore the Hare remembring thys benefite, caried dayly a flaggō of water on his shoulders, [Page 25] and watered the roote of the trée, wherby he caused it to continue fresh and gréene.

Mor. Let vs alwayes gladly serue our benefactors.

28 Of the Crowe and the Dog.

AS the Crowe was offering sacrifice Benefites for aduaū ­tage. to Minerua, she bad the Dog to hir good cheare, but he aunswered hir: Why doest thou bestowe sacrifice to no pur­pose? For the Goddesse so hateth thée, that she suffereth thée to haue no credit in any diuination. To whome the Crowe sayd, for that cause the more do I sacri­fice vnto hir, that I might get hir fauour agayne.

Mor. Many for aduauntage, feare not to benefite their enimies.

29 Of a Hunter and a Partriche.

A Hunter hadde caught a Partriche, Betraying. whiche as hée would haue killed, she besought him pardon for hir lyfe, & to set hir at libertie, promising to bring to hys net many Partriches: The Fouler an­swered hir redily agayn, saying: I think that nowe thou arte more woorthy of [Page 26] death: bicause thou hast giuen thy woord to betray thy friend.

Mor. He whiche goeth about by de­ceyt to vndoo his friend, runneth head­long into miserie.

30 Of the Dolphin and the Eele.

A Certeyne Dolphin finding an Eele in the sea, pursued after hir, whome Beware of memyes. when he had often caught, but could not holde, bycause of hir slippernesse, he was wonderfull sory. But the Eele being di­sposed to mock him, and therby to escape, spake craftely to the Dolphin: I am sorie for thée, that thou art too muche wéeryed and gréeued with swimming after mée, but thy labor is lost: for in the déepe wa­ters thou shalte neuer take mée, but goe with me into the mudde, and thou shalte haue mée at thy plesure. The foolish Dol­phin being in a chafe, and also gréedie of his praie, began to swim after hir, inten­ding vtterly to destroy hir: when the Ele had led the Dolphin into shallow places she wounde hir selfe into the mudde, and sayd: Come vp to me, for I shal be stayed by the rootes of herbes, & thou shalt haue [Page 27] thy desire of mée. The Dolphin gaue a skip to catch the Eele, but she skipt into the mud, and she stack fast on dry groūd: In the meane tyme came a Fisher, and strake him thorough, wherof he dyed.

Mor. He that goeth with his foe, it is no maruell if he fall.

31 Offayre Trees, and deformed.

MAny Trées grewe togyther in one grounde, tall, streight, and withoute Beautie. knottes, amongst whom there was one trée low, crooked and knotty, whome for his deformitie the other mocked. It hap­ned that the lord of the soyle wold buylde an house, for whiche he commaunded all those trées to bee cutte downe, saue that which for his shortnesse and mishapyng, woulde disfigure the house: when the o­ther were he wed downe, the euill fauou­red trée sayd thus with himselfe: Of thée Nature wil I no longer complayn, that I am mishapē, seing that such fayre trées are always in daunger.

Mor. Lette no man bée gréeued in that beautie hurteth many.

32 Of a Lyonesse and the Foxe.

THe Fore oftentymes vpraided ye Lio­nesse, that she had but one whelpe at a tyme, truthe it is (quod she) but then that is a Lyon.

Mor. Beautie cōsisteth not in plen­tie, but in vertue.

33 Of an Astronomer and a Trauailer.

A Certen Astronomer diligently vew­ing the starres, vnwittingly fell into Boasters. a well, but a Trauailer by chaunce com­ming by, and séeing him sighing, sayde: Doest not thou sée the earth, whiche ga­uest thy minde vpward?

Mor. Many boast that they knowe of things to come, not knowing what presently happeneth.

34 Of Scholers.

A Certeine Whéele wright had ben of­ten deluded by Schollers, that were bagabūds, which came to him for almes saying they had greate skill in Magike, and that they could doe many thyngs: of which number, ther came one a begging to his doore, in the name of a Maister of [Page 29] the seuen liberal Arts, to whom he sayd: My friende, were not you here the laste yeare? No (quod the Scholer:) departe therfore (quod he) & come no more here, for I will giue thée nothing. The Schol­ler was offended, & asked why he spake in the singular number to him, béeing a Master of the seuen liberall Artes, and a Magitian. He answered: I know much more than thou doest: for with one han­diecraft labour I fynd me, my wyfe and children, but thou with thy seuen Artes canst not fynde thy selfe, but goest a beg­ging. Wherefore thou oughtest to reue­rence me, and not I thée. When hée had so sayde, the Scholer departed, well mocked.

Mor. It is a folly too boast of any ti­tle, where as knowledge wanteth of that which is professed.

35 Of a Boaster.

A Certein ragged and yll fauored man came into a Tauerne, and bicause he was lightly regarded, began to boast of his nobilitie, that he descended of an aun­cient house, to whome one aunswered: [Page 30] Auaunt knaue with thy nobilitie, oure Millers Asse is more noble than thou, for he goth with a man wayting on him, but thou goest without.

36 Of a Boaster.

A Certein man who hauing trauailed far, returned into his coūtrey, & made great vaunts of his manly acts yt he had done in many places, especially yt he had daunced a daūce at Rhodes, that none of yt place could: for proof wherof, he sayd, yt he had to witnesse thē which wer there pre­sent, to whom one of them that stoode by, answered: Sir, if this be true, what nee­deth witnesse, there stands Rhodes, and there is thy daunce.

Mor. All talke is superfluous, except we haue present proofe.

37 Of the Mole.

THe Mole a blynd beast, sayde some­tyme to hir mother: I sée a Mulbery trée, & streight after, I smell a gret sauor of Frankincense: but the third time shée said, I héere the noyse of the fall of an y­ron pellet: hir mother answered: As far [Page 31] as I perceiue, thou lackest not onely thy sight, but also thy smelling and hearing.

Mor. Some brag they can doo things impossible, & in the least are reproued.

38 Of the birth of Hilles.

THe talke was somtime that the hills did trauayle, whereof men hearing, Boastiag. came thither, and stoode gaping aboute wayting for some monstrous thing, not without great feare. At length the hilles were deliuered, and broughte foorth a Mouse: wherat there fel such a laughter amongst thē, yt they were redy to sowne.

Mor. Crakers will promise greate matters, but scarse perform the least.

39 Of the Frog and the Fox.

A Frog came foorth of the marishes in­to the wood amongst wild beasts, and sayd shée was well séene in phisicke, and that hir cunning was as good as Hipo­crates, or Galenes: all beasts gaue credit, only the For mocked hir saying: shal shée be counted skilful in phisicke, whose lips bée so pale? Let hir first heale hir selfe. And thus the Fore mocked hir. For the [Page 32] mouth of a Frog is of a skye colour.

Mor. It is mere folly to professe that wherof thou hast no skill.

40 Of a Pecock spoyled of his fea­thers by a Souldier.

A Pecoke boasted too a Souldyer that had decked his hat with Estriche fea­thers, that she had much fairer feathers: and to verifie hir saying, she spreade a­broade hir tayle: The Souldiour there­with being inamored, caught and spoy­led hir, wherewith he dacked his helmet: Then the Pecoke sayd to hirselfe: wo is me wretch & foole, too shew so precious a thing to a spoyler, which I ought to haue kept close.

Mor. By boasting of precious things many are stirred to become théeues.

42 Of the Kidde and the Wolfe.

AS a Kid looked out of a windowe, he espyed a wolf passing by, vpon whom Boldnesse. he rayled: Ah vngracius persone, sayde the wolf, it is not thou that tauntest me, but thy safe holde.

42 Of the Sunne and the Northeast winde.

SOmetyme the Sunne and the North­east winde contended, who was the stronger, whervpon they agréed to proue their strength on a wayfaring man, that he might haue the victorie whiche caused him to cast away his wallet. Firste the Northeast winde with sharpe stormes & bitter blastes assayed him: He stayed not a whit therefore, but as he wente, he wrapped hys clothes double about hym: When the Sun was come to his course, by litle & litle in spreading his beames, hée calmed the wind, then was this man in such a heate and swet, that he puffed & blowed excéedingly, and at length by the outragiousnesse thereof, being fainte, he could go no further, but got him into the coole shadowe, casting away his wallet, and sat him downe vnder a thicke wood: by which euident token, the Sunne was conquerer.

Mor. Looke afore thou leape, for though thou be strōg, yet perhaps ano­ther is strōger than thou, if not stron­ger, yet craftier, with his pollicie to gyue thée the foyle.

43 Of a Foxe and women eating of a Hen.

THe Foxe passing by a farme house, espied a great route of women eating Hens sumptuously prepared, but (God wot) there was no talke amongst them, to whom she sayd: what crying and bar­king of dogs would be after me if I shold doo as ye doo? Thou wicked beast (quod an old woman) we eate that is our own, but thou stealest from others.

Mor. We may not be so bolde with other mens goods, as ye right owners.

44 Of a Dog and Wolues.

A Great barking Dog was a sore eni­mie to the Wolues, for when they would haue entred the citie, he kept them out: wherfore they also hated the dogge, whom they would fayne haue killed. At length they sent two Ambassadours to ye Dog, desiring him to come abroad into ye fields, and they would make him their king, bycause he was mighty and vali­aunt: The foolish curre consented & went with them, whom they brought safely to ye other wolues that tare him in pieces.

Mor. Hée that will be hardy, let him kéepe him selfe in a sure defence.

45 Of the Pecocke and the Crane.

THe Pecocke and the Crane somtyme Bragging. supped togither, & amōgst other talke, the Pecocke bragged muche of his fayre tayle, despising the Crane: he graunted yt she was a faire birde in that pointe, yet was he able with his stoute flying, to en­ter amongst the clouds, when she coulde scarse flye to the house toppe.

Mor. Let not one thinke scorne of an­other, euery one hath his proper gift & vertue: for he that wāteth thy quali­tie, perhaps hath yt which thou lackest.

46 Of a Knight which had a brauling wife.

THere dwelt a Knight at Florence, des­cended Brauling Women. of a noble bloud, whiche had a wayward and brauling wife that dayly went to hir ghostly Father, to whom she complayned of hir husbāds demeanure: for which he much blamed the Knight. It happened not long after, that she desired hir ghostly father to set hir & hir husband at quiet, wherevppon he called him to shrift, saying, that if he came, he doubted not but to make them friendes againe. The Knight agréeing, the other required [Page 36] him to make declaration of his faultes. In fayth (quod ye knight) it shall not néed, for I know that my wife hath often tolde thee al that euer I did, yea and more too.

47 Of Arion and the Dolphin.

ARion was an auncient man, & came of a noble linage: he could sing to the Brute beastes kinder than men. harpe: he was borne in the citie of Me­thimne in the Isle of Lesbus, whom Peri­ander King of Corinthe loued for his cun­nings sake, from whom he departed to sée the famous countrey of Sicilie and Italie. When he was come thyther, & had well delighted the eares, and contented the minds of most mē in those partes, he gay­ned greatly, and liued in pleasure & loue of all men. Afterwarde hauing gathered much substance, he minded to returne to Corinth, whervpon he hired a Corinthian ship and mariners of that coaste, bycause he hoped to find friendship at their hands. The Corinthians receyued him, and laū ­ched into the déepe, who being gréedy of this great praie of money, tooke counsell to kill Arion. He vnderstanding of hys destruction, gaue them al the money that [Page 37] he had, praying them only to saue his life. But being past hope and sore afrayde, he requested that before his death, he might put on his apparell and take his Harpe & sing a mourning song to cōfort hys harté withall: The Mariners (though they were hard harted and cruell) desiring to heare him, graunted his petitiō. He being clad as he was accustomed, standing in y hinder part of the ship, song with a loude voyce, the song called Orithium. In the end of his song, as he stood with his harpe and in his clothes, he cast him selfe intoo the Sea. The shipmen nothing doubting but that he was drowned, kept on their voyage. But a straunge and wonderfull thing happened, for a Dolphin sodeynly swam by & receyued him, caried hym on his backe aboue the water, and brought him safe & soūd to Tenarus, in the land of Laconia: frō whēce Arion went straight to Corinthe, and shewed him selfe to King Periander, and howe he was caried of the Dolphin, declaring all that happened.

The King little beleeued this, but com­maunded him safely to be kept til ye truth were tried. The mariners were sought [Page 38] for (and Arion sent out of the way) who being brought before the king, he demaū ­ded of them (making no semblant that he had knowledge of Arion) whyther they hearde any thing of him in the parties whence they came: they aunswered, that when they set foorth he was in Italie, and liued wel there, and was highly estéemed in the cities: and also was excéeding rich. Whiles they thus spake, in came Arion with his Harpe, hauing on the same ap­parell wherewith he lept into the Sea, wherby the shipmē being amazed, & pric­ked in conscience, could not denie it.

Mor. In brute beasts we shall som­tyme finde more friendshippe, than in couetous men, which care for nothing but riches, neyther haue any sparke of humanitie, but the only phisnomie.

48 Of a Kid and a Wolfe.

A Kid straying frō the flock, and being pursued by a Wolf, turned backe to Busie bo­dies. him & sayde: O wolf, bycause I am per­suaded yt thou shalt eate mée, play first on thy pipe that I may daunce, least I die in sorow: As the wolf was playing and the [Page 39] Kid daūcing, ye dogs heard it & chased the wolf: who sayd to the kid: I haue well de­serued this, for I ought not being a cooke, to counterfet a minstrell.

Mor. They whiche regarde not that wher vnto thei are naturally inclined, but assaye that which to others belon­geth, fall into aduersitie.

49 Of the Crab and the Foxe.

A Crab fish came forth of the sea & fed, the Foxe being hungry & séeing him, caught him: who being ready to be de­uoured, sayd: I am wel serued, which be­ing a fishe of the sea, would liue on land.

Mor. Those mē are iustly miserable, yt forsaking their proper sciēce, doo medle wt that, which becommeth them not.

50 Of the Aple tree and the Pomegranat tree.

THe Pomgranat and the Apple trée cō ­tended aboute their beautie: When they hadde continued long in stryfe togy­ther, a bush, which was their neighbour, often hearing them, at length sayd: It is tyme friends to be at one.

Mor. The vilest persons sometyme will medle in their betters matters.

51 Of a Dog and his Maister.

A Certen man had a Dog whome he alwayes fed with his owne handes, Causers of euill. bycause he should loue him the more, and when he was bound he loosed him: But yet he cōmaunded hys seruant to tye him vp, and beate him, to the ende the dogge might perceyue he loued him, & that hys seruant did not. The dog taking it grée­uously to be dayly tied and beaten, ranne away. Whom when his maister rebuked as a churle and forgetfull of all his bene­fites, that he would run away from him which loued him so, and fed him, whome he neuer bound nor bet. Ah sir (sayd the dog) that your seruant doth at your com­maundement, I count it done by you.

Mor. Those are euill doers, whiche are causers of euill.

52 Of the Turtle.

A Certen Turtle being a widowe, ly­ued Chastitie. in great heauinesse for the death of hir mate, but she remayned chast: whō other birds pitying, desired hir to abyde with them, where vnto at length she con­sented: They made hir the beste chéere [Page 41] they could, but she séeing their abhomi­nation and whoordom, forsooke them, and led the rest of hir lyfe in chast widowhed.

Mor. Who protesteth chastitie, must set his mynde on no worldly affaires.

53 Of a scolding Woman.

A Certein man had a scold to his wife, A charm for Scolds. whiche alwayes brauled with him, what soeuer he did, whiche the more hée bet hir, the more fierce shée was. When he saw that stripes would not preuayle, he attempted an other way, for as often as shée chid, he played on a payre of Bag­pypes, wherof he had no skill. When hée had so done, she was more fierce: but at lengthe he continuing his playing, shée daunced for anger, & in the end she stroke the Bagpype out of his hād. But he tooke it agayne, and played, wherwith shée be­ing chafed, ran oute of the doores, saying, that shée woulde not endure his wicked­nesse and dronkennesse. The next day she began hir scolding afreshe, but hir hus­band played as he was wont. Then the womā declared that she was ouercome, and left of hir cursing, promising hir hus­hand [Page 42] to become most gentle vnto him, so that he woulde lay away his Bagpype.

Mor. Malaperte women by dyuers wayes must be charmed.

54 Of two Haukes and a Quayle.

TWoo haukes being confederate togi­ther, cōdescēded to deuide their praie Choose the least euill. equally. When they hunted on a tyme, they caught a Quayle from hir nest, too whom they sayd: Choose whether we shal eat thée alone, or else bring vs to thy nest that wée may eate thy yong ones wyth thée. The Quayle aunswered: I am in trouble on euery side, and what I shall doo I can not tell: it is better to fall into theyr handes alone, than to dye with my yong ones: but before they killed hir, she sayd: Better it is to suffer a little harme than a woorse.

Mor. Of two euills the least is to chosen.

55 Of the Wolfe and the Crane.

THe Wolfe sometyme hadde killed a sheepe, which as hée gréedely deuou­red, Churle. by chaūce the bones stuck fast in his [Page 43] throate: hée trauayled far and néere sée­king for help but founde none, for all mē iudged hym well serued for his greedy­nesse. At length by fayre flattring words, and greater promyses, hée allured the Crane too thrust his long neck intoo his throate, and to plucke out the bone that stucke fast. When the Crane had so done he required a rewarde: But the Wolfe laughed him to scorn, saying: Be packing thou patch, canst thou not be cōtent with thy lyfe, thou arte bounde to thanke mee therfore: for had I list, I might haue bit­ten off thy necke.

Mor. All is lost that is put in a riuen dishe.

56 Of the Fisher and the litle fishe.

A Fisher cast his hookes into the water Certentie. bayted wyth fleshe, wherewith he caught a litle fish, the prisoner besoughte him to release him, now being so little, and too lette hym growe bygger, that héereafter hée might haue the more com­moditie of him: Nay sayde the Fisher, I will not bye the pigge in the poke, for I vse too take what presently I can get.

[Page 44] Mor. Leaue not the bird in the hand, for that in the bushe.

58 Of a Foxe that woulde kill a Henne sittyng.

THe For being entred a countreymās house, found a Henne sitting on Egs in the nest, whiche besought him, saying: I pray thée kill me not now being leane, tary a while till my chickens be hatched, which thou mayst eat without any tooth­ake being yong: Ah (quod he) I were not woorthy too be called a For, if now being hungry, I would forsake my praie that is redy, vpon hope of chickens which are not yet oute of the shell: I haue strong téeth, which are able to grynd the hardest fleshe that is. And when he had so sayd, he deuoured the Henne.

Mor. He is not wise, which vpon vn­certayn hope of greater things, wyll let go that which he hath presently.

58 Of the Frogs and their King.

THe Frogs being frée besought Iupiter too giue them a kyng, hée laughed at Common people. theyr foolish petition, neuerthelesse they [Page 45] continued theyr instante sute so long, that at the length they forced hym there­vnto. He cast them down a beame, which with the fall thereof made a great noyse in the water. The Frogs being afrayde hild their peace, and did homage to their king, and approched by litle and litle ne­rer vntoo him. At length they boldly hop­ped vp and downe on him: and thus their foolish kyng became a laughing stock vn­to them. Then called they on Iupiter a­geyne, desiring of him a valiant king-He sent them the Storke, who walked lyke a stoute champion through the Marshes killing and deuouring as many Froggs as he met. At euen when the Stork was gone too rest, they came foorth of their ho­les, hoarsly crying, but to a deade man, for Iupiter his wil was, seing they were not content with a mercifull kyng, that they should be oppressed with a tyrant.

Mor. The like hapneth too the com­mon people, which hauing a merciful and gentle Prince & iudge hym a da­stard and slouthful, and pray that they may haue a stoute prince. Ageyne ha­uing a valiant Prince, they dispraise [Page 46] his crueltie, praysing the others cle­mency. Eyther it is, that wée are not cōtented with things present: or that is true, seldome commeth the better.

59 Of the Colyer and the Fuller.

A Colyer sometime desired a Fuller to dwell with hym in house togyther: Company. Nay (sayd the Fuller) this neyther plea­seth me, nor yet is for my profite. For I feare greately least that whiche I make cleane, thou shouldest raye as blacke as a coale.

Mor. Wée are héereby warned too kéepe company with those that be of a perfect honest lyfe, and to shunne the felowship of leude men, as a noysome plague.

60 Of a Shepherd which kept a Wolf amongest his Dogges.

A Shepherd finding a Wolues whelp, brought him home, and kept him a­mong his doggs that were a sauegarde for the shepe, which being well growne, began to kil shéepe, and to teach the dogs to eate with him, whiche thing the shep­herd marking, killed the Wolf, but yet [Page 47] he could not make the dogs leaue killing of shéepe. Then sayd the shepherd, wor­thily am I thus serued, bycause I put a Wolfe amongst the Dogs, whiche hath taught them too kill sheepe.

Mor. The fellowship of euill men corrupteth good manners.

61 Of the Rauen and Wolues.

A Rauen sometyme folowed Wolues ouer manye high hills, wherfore hée required to be part taker of theyr praie, bycause he had so far followed them, nei­ther had left their cōpanie. The Wolues made light of hym, bycause he followed not thē, but their praie, & in yt he wold as soon deuoure the harts of wolues, if they should be slayn, as of any other beast.

Mor. We must always mark not yt we doo, but of what mynde we are in doing.

62 Of the father and his sons.

A Husband man had many yong men Concord. to his sons, which wer always at va­riāce, whom hée diligently endeuored to vnite in loue toogether, and bycause hée wold plainly opē to thē the incōueniēces [Page 48] of theyr discord, hée brought a bundell of small sticks, whiche he cōmaunded them to bynde with a little corde, and then to breake it in péeces: they being but yong and weake, did their good wyll to breake it, but coulde not preuayle: Then theyr father loosed it, and gaue euery of them a little rod therof, which euery one accor­ding to his strength did easily breake: and foorthwith he sayde to them: Sonnes, if ye would agrée, and sticke thus one to an other, no man were able to vanquishe you: but if ye be eyger to hurt and pursue one an other with mortal hatred, ye shal soone be a praie for your enimie.

Mor By concord small thyngs en­crease. By discord great thyngs wast and consume.

63 Of Bulles and a Lyon.

THer were foure Bulls which agréeed to sticke one too an other as well in wealth as in woe, whome the Lyon per­ceiued féeding together, and therfore was afraide too assaile them though hée were verie hungry: but in the ende he deuised by some crafty way to seuer them: whom [Page 49] after they were parted he soon tore them in péeces.

Mor. Nothing is surer than concord and discord maketh the mighty weak

64 Of a Lyon which begged of the Wolfe part of his praie.

THe Wolf and the For entred felow­ship, Consenting perforce. and went a hunting, to whome, as they were diuiding the Harte whiche they had taken, the Lion came by chaūce, and chalenged the third part of the praie, bycause he was king of foure footed bea­stes: but the Wolf denyed it: then the Li­on being angry, layd hold on the Wolfe with his clawes, and plucked the skinne cleane from his head, and made it redde, whereby the Wolfe escaped searse with his life. After the Lion turned to the For and sayde: What sayest thou? Forsooth my lorde the Kyng (quod he) I graunte not only ye third part, but also the whole Hart vnto you: What (quod the Lion) hath any body taught thée to answere so wysely: Yea sir, (sayde the Fore:) The redde hatte which you put on my fellow the Wolfe hath taught me.

[Page 50] Mor. Better it is sometime to graūt a part than to léese the whole.

66 Of a Snayle.

THe Snayle being offended that he cō ­tinually Content in thy state. abode in moyst and low pla­ces, desired the Egle, (of whome he had heard, that shée flewe so hygh, that shée myght beholde the greatest parte of the Earth on euery side) to cary hym vp on high, wherby he myghte at once beholde both Hilles and Gaileys, the Fields and she Sea. Whiche thing, when the Egle hadde quickly done, shee cast him downe, whereby he fell on the grounde, and was dashed in péeces.

Mor Let no mā exalt himself higher than his state & nature doth require.

67 Of the Doue and the Kyte.

IN time past the Doues kept war with the Kyte, whom bicause they woulde banquishe, they chose the Hauke too bée theyr Kyng. When hée was come to the kingdome, hée was rather a mortall eni­mie to them than a King, he caughte and destroyed them as fast as the Kite. Then [Page 51] the Doues were wonderful sory for that they had doone, and iudged it muche safer for them to haue endured the perpetuall warres of the Kite, than the tyrānie and oppression of the Hauke.

Mor. Let no man bée too much grie­ued wyth hys estate, for nothyng is blessed on euery syde.

68 Of a Husbandman.

A Certeyne husbandman was discon­tented, that he dayly ploughed his earth, and could attayn no great wealth through his toyling, & had séen some soul­diers whiche when warre was broken vp, had so encreased theyr substance, that they went wel apparailed, fared sumptu­ously, and liued in all pleasure. Where­vppon hée solde his Sheepe, Goates, and Dxen, and bought horse and Armoure, and went a warfare, where, bycause he played not the man as he ought, he was spoyled of al that he had & wounded sore: then he misliked warfare, and mynded to occupye marchandise, hoping for greater gayne & lesse payne: when he had sold his Farme, and laded his shyppe with mar­chandise, [Page 52] he launched out into the déepe, where sodeynly there arose a great tem­pest of weather, the shyp was drowned, and he with all his companie were caste away.

Mor. Let euery man be content with his estate, seing that miserie is euery where at hand.

68 Of the Hare and the Fox.

THe Hare and the Foxe made theyr peticions too Iupiter, the one desired swiftnesse to his subtiltie, the other sub­tiltie to his swiftnesse: Iupiter aunswe­red them: In the begynning of ye world, wée gaue euery beaste his propre gifte bountifully: now if one should haue had all, other had ben wronged.

Mor. God hath bestowed his gifts so indifferently vpon euery mā, that we ought with our state to be satisfied.

69 Of the Elme and the Osier.

THere sprong vp an Elme in the bank Contention with supe­riours. of a Riuer, whiche mocked an Dsier that grew next him, for his weakenesse, bicause that with the least beating of the [Page 53] water he moued, but of his own strēgth and stoutnesse he boasted excedingly, and howe that he had continued there many yeares not able to be shaken by the vio­lence of the water. It hapned on a tyme, that by force of the waues he was brokē downe, and caried away by the streame: Then the Dsier mocked hym, saying: Whither away neyghbour, wilte thou nowe forsake me? Where is nowe thy strength become?

Mor. Those men are wiser that giue place to their betters, than they that doo contende and haue a fowle ouer­throwe.

70 Of the Serpent and the Crab.

THe Serpente and the Crab being en­tred friendship, liued together. The Crab being a true meaner, exhorted him to leaue off his gyle: but he would not o­bey him: the Crab therfore watched him, when he was a sléepe, and as well as hée coulde pressed hym downe and slue hym, be séeing the serpent when he was deade, sayd: Thou oughtest afore too haue bene strayght and simple, and then thou hadst [Page 54] escaped this punishment.

Mor. They which go craftily to their friends, doo rather hurt them selues.

72 Of the Hart and the Wolfe.

A Hart sometyme accused a Shepe be­fore the Wolfe, that he ought hym a bushell of wheate: The Shéepe in very déede knew nothing of this, yet for feare of the Wolfe promysed payment. A day was set, which being come, the Hart put the Shepe in remembraunce therof, she denyed it, excusing that promise too bee made for feare of the Wolues presence. Forced promises are not to be kept.

Mor. It is a clause of the lawe, force must haue the repulse by force. But thereof cometh a new sentence: It is lawfull to paye craft with the lyke.

73 Of a Feller of woode.

AS a Woodfeller was cuttyng wood néere a riuer side, he lost his axe, who being vncertayne what to doe, sate hym downe on the riuers banke and wepte. But Mercurius vnderstanding the cause, & moued with pitie, diued vnder the wa­ter, [Page 55] broughte vp a golden axe, and asked him, if that were it whiche he loste: Hee denyed it too bée his: then hée dyued a­geyne, and brought vp one of Siluer, the whiche hée refused too bee his, then hée dyued the thyrde tyme, and tooke vp his Axe, whiche he acknowledged to be his which he lost. Mercurius perceyuing him too bée a iust man and a true, gaue them all vnto hym, who foorthe with came too hys fellowes, and shewed them what hadde happened vnto hym. One of them bycause hee woulde also trye it, came to the Ryuer, and cast in his Axe willing­ly: then satte hym downe and wepte.

Vnto whome when Mercurius had ap­peared, and vnderstode the cause, he lyke­wyse dyued, and broughte vp a golden Axe, whiche he asked, if hée hadde loste: He reioycing, dyd affirme it too bee his. Whose impudent and manyfest falshod Mercurie perceyuing, neyther gaue hym the golden axe, nor his owne.

Mor. How muche GOD loueth the ryghtuous, so muche hée hateth the vnryghtuous.

73 Of the Cocke and the Foxe.

THe Foxe béeing sometyme very hun­gry, thoughte by suttletie too get his pray amongst the Hennes, which by the conduction of the Cocke were flowne in­to a hygher trée than hée coulde clymbe: whervpon he came to the Cocke, whome he gently saluted, and sayde: What ma­kest thou so hygh? Hast thou not hearde the newes of late, whiche are so good for vs? Verely (quod the Cocke) I heard no­thing: but I praye thée what are they? The Foxe sayde: I am come hyther to make thée pryuie of oure ioy: For there was lately a generall Counsell helde of all Beastes, wherein was concluded a continuall peace betwéene all Beastes: so that nowe withoute any manner of feare, molestation, or laying awayte of any, euery one may walke where as he list in safetie and quietnesse, therefore come downe and lette vs kéepe holy this day. The Cocke perceyuing the subtil­tie and crafte of the Foxe, sayde to him: Thy tydings are very good, whiche also I do lyke well: and foorthwith he stret­ched out his necke, and looked a farre off, [Page 57] as though he sawe some straunge thing, whom the Foxe asked, what he espied? The Cocke aunswered, I sée two dogges comming amayne with open mouth: the Fox there wt quaking for feare bad them Adieu, for tyme it is for me to be gone, & foorthwt tooke him to his féete: What sir (quod the Cocke) whyther runnest thou? what fearest thou? thou néedest doubt no­thing, if this peace be concluded: verily (quod ye Fox) I can not tell whither these Dogs haue heard of this decrée or not. Wherby one craft was paid with ye like.

74 Of a deceyuer.

THere was a certeyn man who sowed leade and other trifles in a péece of lether, as though it had ben som Iewel, & in the sight of a riche marchaunt & other men, he priuilie threw it to the ground, & after tooke it vp agayne, inquiring if any had lost it: This riche man being coue­tous, came and affirmed it to be his: to whom the deceyuer sayd: Is it a precious thing as it séemeth? The Marchaunt auouched it to bée. Mary (quod the other) thou shalt not haue it agayne except thou [Page 58] giue mée .x. Crownes for a reward, which he willingly gaue, & forth with departed & opened the leather, but he perceyuing it to be a small trifle, went to the Decey­uer, alleaging yt he was beguiled, where­fore he threatned to hang him, excepte he restored the .x. Crownes. Why (quod the deceyuer) didst thou craftly and falsly saye it was thine? and he caught holde on his hand and would haue brought him before ye maior to trie their honestie, but ye mar­chaūt plucked back his hand & ran away.

75 Of a Foxe caught by a Dog, whyles she fayned hir selfe dead.

A Foxe counterfeyting that she was dead, to the ende to entrap the birdes which should come to hir as to a dead car­case, being walowed in durt, did lie with hir face vpwarde in a field, wayting for Choughes and Rauens, & suche like grée­dy birdes, whiche she would deuoure. It happened a dog to come by, whiche snat­ched at hir and with his téeth tore hir. Wherat she sayd: I am worthily serued, for whiles I endeuoure subtilly to catche birds, my self am caught by an other.

[Page 59] Mor. They which lie in wayte for o­ther, ought not to be gréeued if they bée entrapped them selues.

76 Of a Boy and a Theefe.

A Boy sat wéeping on the brinke of a Well, whom a Théefe demaūded the cause thereof. Mary (quod he) as I drew water my rope brake, and a pot of gold is fallen in. This théefe beléeuing him, put of his clothes and lept into the Well to séeke it: which, bycause he founde not, he came vp again, where he coulde neyther sée the Boy nor his cote, for the Boy was gone with it.

Mor. Hée that vseth deceipt, somtime is deceyued.

77 Of the Thrushe.

THe Thrush made his vaunts yt he had won the friendship of the Swallow, to whom his mother sayde: Thou arte a foole sonne, if thou think to liue with hir, séeing eyther of you desireth contrarie places, for she abideth in hot places, but thou in colde.

Mor. Make not those thy friendes, whose liuing disagréeth from thine.

81 Of the Aire and the vvinde.

THe Aire on a time cited the winde be­fore the Iudge & maker of all things, and sayd: O Lorde of all things, beholde and take pitie of me, ye haue placed me Prince lyke inough, for which I giue you thanks, bycause ye haue appointed me to be the life of all liuing things, but herein I was deceyued, for this wind doth make me so cold and intemperate, therefore I say to him, if he presume frō hencé foorth to blowe vpon me, I will choke him: to whom the Creator sayd: Aire thou sayst ill, though the winde make thée colde and tosse thée, yet he maketh thée holsome and temperate. If the wind blew not on thée, thou shouldest be corrupt, lothsome, infe­cted and hated of all men: wherfore thou oughtest to loue him whiche preserueth thy health, wherewith the Aire was at one with the Winde.

Mor. We ought to loue, and pacient­ly suffer them which correct vs.

82 Of a Trauailer.

A Wayfaring man hauing trauayled farre, vowed, if he found any thing to Couetous­nesse. [Page 61] offer the half thereof to Mercurius. He found a bag full of Almonds and Dates, whiche he tooke and eate: but the Date stones and shells of the Almonds he layd vppon an Altare, saying: Thou haste O Mercury, my vowe, for with thée I par­take both the outside & the inside of that I found.

Mor. The Fable is against coue­tous men, whiche for couetousnesse deceyued the Gods.

83 Of a Woman and a Hen.

A Certen Widowe had a Hen, whiche day by daye laid an egge: she suppo­sing, if she gaue hir more barley, that she would lay twise a day, did so: but the hen being fat, could not lay once a day.

Mor. Sometime they loose the pre­sent commoditie, which through coue­tousnesse séeke after more.

84 Of a couetous man.

A Couetous man hauing solde all hys goods, made a wedge of golde, whiche in a certein place he buried togither wt his soule & mind, to which he dayly went [Page 62] to sée it: One of the workmen watching him on a time, and perceyuing what was done, digged vp the wedge and caried it away: afterward he came, who séeing the place empty, began to lament and plucke him self by the haire. Whē one saw him thus wéeping, and vnderstoode the cause thereof, he sayd: Friend be not sory, for hauing golde, thou hadst it not, take ther­fore a stone, and hide it for thy gold: and suppose that it is golde, and it shall be all one to thée, for as I perceyue, whē it was golde, thou didst not occupie it.

Mor. It auayleth nothing to be en­dued with possessions, except we haue the vse thereof

81 Of the Chough and the Doues.

A Chough séeing Doues in a certeyn douehouse wel kept, coloured him self white, and wēt thyther, bicause he would be partaker of their foode. They as long as he helde his peace, supposing him to be a Doue, receyued him into their compa­nie. But he forgetting him self on a time chatted, whose nature they then know­ing, bette him and draue him away: Of [Page 63] which meate being depriued, he returned to ye Choughs: they bicause of his colour not knowing him, draue him frō féeding with them: so coueting both, enioyed ney­ther.

Mor. We must be content with our owne, considering that couetousnesse, besides that it nothing auayleth, some­time is the cause to loose the preseut good that we haue.

82 Of the Dog and the shadowe.

AS a Dog by chaunce swam ouer the Riuer, he caried in his iawes a piece of flesh. The sunne then shyning, as cō ­monly it happeneth, the shadowe thereof appeared in the water: which when hée had séene, supposing it to be another piece of flesh, snatched gréedely thereat, & so lost that he had in his iawes. The Dog being stroken at the harte, bothe with the losse of his fleshe and also of his foolishe hope, barked thus in his language: Ah wretch, whiche lackedst a measure in thy gréedie desire. Thou hadst inough and too much hadst thou not doted, nowe throughe thy follie thou hast nothing left thée.

[Page 64] Mor. We are warned of modestie and wisedome, in desiring and eschu­ing of things, and to vse a meane in our desires.

88 Of a couetous Ambassadour,

ACertē couetous man being sent Em­bassadour for his countrey to another Citie, there were straigth at hand trum­peters to welcome him, and to delight his eares with musicke, hoping thereby to fill their purses with money. He sent them woord, it was now no time to play bycause his hart was heauy for the death of his mother: the Trumpeters decey­ued of their purpose, departed sorowing. Then a friende of his hearing of his so­rowe, came to sée and comforte him, and asked him, how long it was since his mo­ther died? Forty yeares (quod he) then his friende vnderstanding the wilie de­ceyt of the Ambassadoure, laughed excée­dingly.

Mor. This Fable belongeth to coue­tous men, which studie all the wayes to the wood to saue their money.

89 Of a couetous man dying.

AS a couetous man lay a dying, and vnderstood that at length he shoulde cary nothing with him, he turned him to his friendes and neyghboures whome he sawe present, and sayd: Learne of mée, whiche al my life time haue endeuoured to gather goods, that ye trauaill not too much too heape vp riches: for of so many Acres of land, of so much precious appa­rell whiche with so great sweating I haue gotte, I shall haue but a hole of fiue foot, and one shéet, wherwith being dead, I shall be couered.

Mor. It is a foolishe and miserable thing to bestowe so much labor in ga­thering of goods, whiche (whyther we will or not) we must quickly leaue.

90 Of a Rauen taken by Dogs.

TWo Rauens féeding on a carcase, had torne away two great gobbets of flesh, which thei purposed to cary through the Aire: but Dogs comming sodenly vpon them, the one of them leauing hys piece of the carcase, straight flewe farr­away from the sight of them: The o­ther [Page 66] gréedie of his praye, and staying to let goe his piece, was taken by the dogs: Who séeing that he should presently die, sayde: Ah wretche and vnhappie packe that I am, whiche for so small a commo­ditie léese so many pleasures of life.

Mor. Insaciable gréedinesse hath com­monly bene the vndooing of couetous men.

91 Of a Gote and a Dog.

A Gote being hungrie, desired to enter a Gardin where he sawe gréene pot­herbes: but a Bandog, whom the Gardi­ner had set to be kéeper, would not giue him leaue, but swore his death if he step­ped in. The Gote aunswered, why doest thou forbid me to eate that, whiche auay­leth thee nothing? I wil in no wise do this (quod the Dog) bycause it is my natu­rall disposition.

Mor. This Fable sheweth the nature of couetous men which haue plenty of many things, whereof they haue no vse, neyther suffer others to enioy it.

92 Of a couetous mā that eate vvithered Apples.

A Couetous man had gathered many Apples and faire, suche as the Poets [Page 67] report to haue bin in the Gardins of Al­cinous and the Hesperians: whiche he did so spare, that he durst eate none, excepte they began to perishe. His sonne being very liberall, brought his fellowes very often into the Apple loftes, saying: Take of these what ye will, but touch not them that are perished, for my father wil haue them serued alwayes after meate, which thing they willingly obeyed.

Mor. Nothing is more miserable than a couetous man whiche kéepeth for others that whiche God hath lent him to vse.

93 Of a Iester and a Bishop.

A Certē Iester came in the calends of Ianuarie to a Bishop, who was ve­ry Couetous Prelats. rich, but couetous: Of whom he beg­ged a piece of gold for a new yeares gift. This Prelate sayd that he was mad, in that he supposed to haue so muche money giuen him for a newe yéeres gifte. Then the fellow begged a piece of siluer, but he sayd that was too much. Agayn, he requi­red of him ye least coyne of brasse: but whē be could not obtayn y, he sayd: I pray thée [Page 68] yet (reuerend father) at the least, bestow thy blissing on me in steade of a present. Then sayde the Bishop: Knéele downe sonne that I may blisse thée. Nay, then (quod hée) I care not for your blissing, if it be so good cheape, for if it had bē worth a farthing, you would not haue graunted it to mée.

Mor. This is against Bishops and Priests, whiche sette more by riches than all holy misteries of the Church.

94 Of a Priest which buried his Dog.

A Countrey Prieste dwelling in Tus­cia, who was very riche, had a litle Dogge whom he dearely loued: whiche, when it died, he buried in the churchyard. Whereof the Bishop of that Diocesse being aduertised, and being couetous, supposing thereby to get some great sum of money, therevppon he somoned the Priest to appeare before him. He know­ing well the pretence of the Bishoppe, tooke with him fifty pieces of golde, and came to the Bishop, who layde sore to his charge the burying of his Dogge, for which he commaunded hym to prison. [Page 69] The Prieste (as he was riche) so beyng witty withall, humbly aunswered him, saying: Reuerend Father, if your holy­nesse vnderstoode the singuler wisdome of my Dogge, ye woulde nothing mar­uell that he was buried amongst men: For his wit passed mans reason, as well in his life time as at the houre of hys death. What is this (quod the Bishop) that thou sayest? Forsothe (quod the Priest) he made a Wil at his latter end, and knowing your necessitie, he beque­thed you fifty pieces of golde, whiche I haue brought with mée. The Bishoppe, when he had receyued the money (being well pleased) sent away the Prieste vn­punished.

95 Of a Shepherd that encouraged his flocke against the Wolfe.

A Shepherd whiche had a great flocke of Gotes and shéepe, séeing his flocke dayly to be a praie to the wolf, and to de­crease, he gathered them all togyther, & wt long talke exhorted them not to feare the wolfe (séeing they were moe in num­ber, and besides that fenced with hornes, which ye wolf lacked) but that they would [Page 70] at once withall their might defēde thēsel­ues frō his assault, promising thē his own ayde to the vttermost. They being here­with encouraged, did promis and sweare that they would not stir an ynche for the wolf. But shortly after when they heard that the wolf came, they were so afrayd, that the shepherds wordes coulde by no meanes stay them from running away. Then sayde the Shepherd to him selfe: it is not possible that nature sholde be al­tered.

Mor. Dull heads and cowards are afraid, not only of the sight, but also of the report of their enimies, neyther cā they be encouraged to manhood by a­ny talke of their Captayne.

96 Of a Fisher and fiue Fishes.

THere were fiue Fishes, yong, fat, and lustie, whiche swam in a créeke of the Counsell. sea, whom a Fisher espying that passed by, set his nets to take them. They séeing that, sayde: It is good that we strongly swimme togither and breake those nets, that hereafter they may deceyue no more fishe, for we are strong, and this we may [Page 71] stoutely do. Then an auncient and wit­ty Sturgion lying at reste in the water, and hearing this, started vp saying: litle ones, your intent is foolishe, therefore I counsell you, if ye will be safe, to auoyde the nets, otherwise when ye are faste in them ye will be sory. These Fishes be­ing yong, and trusting in their owne strength, despised the counsell of the el­der, and they swamme togither ouer the nets, minding to breake them, but the nets yelded, and their rushing did not preuayle, so that, when they were ta­ken, they mourned, lamented and syghed to late.

Mor. It is good to beléeue our elders, which are wiser than our selues.

97 Of the Owle.

SOmetime the most part of birds went to the Owle and desired hir no longer to abide in holes of houses, but rather in the boughs of trées, where is swéeter sin­ging. And incontinently they shewed hir a yong Oke newe sprong vp, small and tender, where she might sitte very [Page 72] softly, and builde hir nest: she woulde not agrée therto, but gaue them counsell not to credite the yong plante, for it woulde beare in tyme to come, birdlyme, whiche would be their destruction. They being a light kinde of birdes and often flitting, despised the good coūsel of the Owle: but when the Oke was growē, it was brode and full of boughes: then the birdes to­gither did flie amongst the boughs, there they tooke their pleasure, hopped vp and downe, played and song togither. In the meane time the Oke brought forth bird­lime. Then the smal birds all too late re­pented, that they refused that holsome counsell: and this is the cause (men say) why all birdes, as soone as they sée the Owle, come clustering about hir, follow hir, sit aboute hir and flie with hir, for they remembring that counsell, accounte hir wise, and come aboute hir by flockes, that they might learne wisdome and knowledge of hir.

Mor Despise not the counsel of him that giueth it a right.

98 Of a Fox.

A Foxe being caught in a snare, when Counsell for priuate gayne. she had escaped with hir tayle cut of, was ashamed of hir life, where vppon she pretended to persuade other Foxes ther­to, so as by a cōmon mischiefe she myght couer hir owne shame: When shée had assembled them all togither, she coūselled them to cutte off their tayles, alledging that they were not onely vncomely but also a superfluous burthen: One of the Foxes aunswered hir: Truely sister, yf this thing were not only for thy profite, thou wouldst not counsell vs thertoo.

Mor. Wicked men gyue counsell too their neighbours for no good will, but for their owne aduantage.

99 Of the Lyon and the Gote.

A Lyon by chaunce espyed a Gote vpō Crafty mē an high rock, whom he counselled ra­ther to come downe and féed in the gréene medow: so wold I sayde the gote, if thou were thence, for thou geuest me counsell, not for my pleasure, but to slake thy hunger.

Mor. Credit not euery mans talke, [Page 74] for some counsel not to profit thée, but themselues.

100 Of a Fox taken by a Countryman.

A Foxe being taken by a Countryman Craftie men. of whose Hens he had kylled many, with flattering woords besought hym to set him at libertie, swearyng deuoutely that thencefoorth he would neuer do him harme. The Countryman aunswered, I woulde willingly forgiue thée, and let thée go safe and sounde, but that I know thée to be craftie, and a promise breaker, and I certenly know, that thou canst not hinder mée béeing deade, but I mystrust thée being alyue.

Mor. We must giue no credit to false and craftie men.

101 Of a Woman that woulde dye for hir Husband.

A Certeyne chaste Matrone that loued hir husbande well, was grieued at Craft of women. the heart for the sickenesse of hym, wée­ping and mournyng much: & bycause hir hearty good will might appéere the more, shée besought death, if néedes he woulde [Page 75] haue hir Husbande, rather too take hir and to excuse him: whiles she thus spake, she espied Death with his lothesome loo­kes approching, wherewith she beyng a­gast, and already repenting, sayd: I am not that body which thou seekest, he lyeth in the bed whom thou camest to slea.

Mor. No man loueth hys friende so well, but he loueth hym selfe better: Néere is my coate, but neerer is my skinne.

102 Of a Lyon being olde.

THere was a Lion which in his youth Crueltie requited. through his fiercenesse had purchased the displeasure of many: whereof in hys olde age hée receyued iust punishement. Euery beast in recompence of their hurt requited hys quarell: The Bore wyth his tuske, the Bull strake him with hys horns, and especialy the Asse, (béeing in­flamed to cast off the name of a cowarde) with chyding and kickyng, couragiously didde beate him. The Lion then wayling lamentably sayde: Those whome some­time I haue hurt, pay me agein with the same measure, and not without a cause: [Page 76] Agein, those to whome sometyme I haue done good, requite not now my goodnesse, but rather vniustly are my foes: greate was my follie when I made so many my enimies, but greter, in that I trusted false friendes.

Mor. When thou art in prosperous estate be not lofty nor fierce, if fortune once frown or looke awry, they whom thou haste hurte, shall reuenge theyr quarell: if thou haue fréends, put a dif­ferēce betwene them, some are frends not too thée, but too thy table, and to thy fortune, which as the wynde turneth, will turne, and happye shalte thou be if they be not thy foes.

103 Of an Egle and a Conie.

SOmtime an Egle buylt hir nest in an high trée, who by chaunce espyed yong Rabbettes a farre off féeding, whiche he snatched vp, and caried to his yong ones to féede on. The Conye with flatteryng woords besoughte him to restore his son. But the Egle supposing him being but a small beaste, and earthly, by no meanes able to hurt him, tore thē in péeces with [Page 77] hir clawes in the sight of the Conie, and gaue thē to hir yong ones to make merie withall. The Conies heart earning sore at the death of hir Rabbets, woulde not let it rest vnreuenged, but digged vp by the rootes that trée where hir nest was, which with the least blast of winde was ouerthrowne: By which meanes the E­gles yong ones being without feathers, and not able to flie, fell to the grounde, and were destroyed. Which thing not a little comforted the Conie.

Mor. No man bearing him selfe stiff of his owne strength, ought to despise the weaker, seing sometyme the feeble do reuenge the wrong don to them by the mightie.

104 Of the Hares and the Frogs.

IT hapned that Hares hering a strange Courage. roaring in the woode, all trembling be­gan swiftly to runne away: In running they stayed at a marishe, being in doute what to doe, séeing danger on euery syde: and to encrease theyr feare they espied Frogs there drowned. Then one wyser than the rest sayd: Wherfore are we so [Page 78] fondly afraid? Let vs take a good hart, for swiftnesse in rūning we lack not, but only a couragious stomack, as for this hur­ly burly we néed not fear but set it light.

Mor. In all things take a good hart: strength without courage is but dead: for the cheefe heade of strength is har­dinesse.

105 Of the Bee and Inpiter.

THe Bée whych as men think, was the firste make of Waxe, came some­tyme Cursing. to sacrifice to the Gods, whose obla­tiō to Iupiter was a house of hony, wher­with Iupiter reioycing, commaunded hir petition whatsoeuer it were, to be graū ­ted. Then the Bée asked thus: most pui­sant god of al gods, I besech thée graūt to thy handmayde, that who soeuer cōmeth to the hyue to steale away hir hony, may forth with dye as I haue pricked him. Iu­piter being abashed at hir requeste, by­cause he loued mankinde farre aboue all other, at lengthe sayde to hir: Be thou contente if thou sting hym that stealeth thy honye, that thou mayst leese thy sting and foorthwyth dye, and that in thy sting [Page 79] thy lyfe may lye.

Mor. We curse oure enemyes, but it commonly lyghteth on oure owne heads.

106 Of a hart and a Lyon.

A Harte escaping Hunters, entred a Daunger. caue, where he chaunced on a Lyon, by whome he was taken: As he was dy­ing, he sayde: Woe is mée, that fléeing from men, haue happened on the cruel­lest of all beasts.

Mor. Many men auoyding smal dan­gers, runne into great.

107 Of the Towne Dogs.

A Great route of Towne dogs coursed sore a Country dog which ran away and durst not resist: at the last he turned ageyne and shewed his téethe to them, then they all stoode still, and durste not come néere him, where as the Capteine generall of the hoste was presente, who turned to his souldiers, & sayd: Felowes, this sighte warneth vs not to flée, séeing we sée more daunger to them that runne away, than to those that resist.

108 Of two Pots.

TWo Pots stoode togither on a bank­the Dealyng. one was of earth, the other of brasse, which both were sodeinly caught by the force of the streames, the earthen Pot fering to be broken went swiftliest, whom the Brasen potte comforted, wil­ling him to feare nothyng: for he coulde take heede ynough, that they shoulde not knocke togither. Nay (said the other) I knowe well inough, whether the Riuer beate thée agaynst mée, or mée againste thee, I shall be in hazarde on euery side. Therfore haue I determined to kéepe no companie with thée.

Mor. Better it is too deale with thy fellowe, than with thy better, for the myghtyer man can sooner hurte thée, than thou him.

109 Of the Swanne svngying at the poynt of death.

A Swan being nere at the poynt of death, was asked of the Storke, why Death. he soong sweter, being nigh his death, (which all other beasts do so much hate) than in all his lyfe tyme before, seing at [Page 81] that tyme he ought to be sory: the Swan aunswered: Bicause from hencefoorth I shall not bée troubled with séekyng for meate, neither shall I neede to feare the Foulers ginne.

Mor. Wée are warned hereby not to feare death, being by that bereft from all miseries.

110 Of an Olde man whych set Trees.

A Man of very old age, was mocked of a yong man, bicause he planted trées, wher of he shold neuer sée fruite: The old man aunswered: Neyther thou perhaps shalte gather fruite of those whiche thou gost about to set. Shortly after the yong man fell out of a trée, whiche he clymbed to gather beries, and brake his necke.

Mor. Death spareth no age.

111 Of the Phesaunt and the Pecocke.

THe birds somtime being at debate a­bout Debate. a certen election, at length chose the Phesant and the Pecocke, who also straue for their prerogatiue, and about it consumed their substance. Then ye birdes [Page 82] assembled before the Egle, to whom they shewed their election, crauing that hée as an indifferent Judge would confirme it. The Egle, bicause he would perfectly vn­derstand the case, sent for them both to heare them. The Phesaunt beganne his tale thus: Oryghtuous iudge howe pas­sing faire a birde I am thou mayest per­ceyue, howe swéete also my flesh is, it is not vnknowne, wherefore I thinke my selfe worthy of the Lordshippe. Then the Pecocke layde for hym selfe thus: Moste gracious Lady, the woordes whiche the Phesaunt hath alleaged are vntrue, for in beautie I farre exceede him, besydes that my varyable tayle of ryght chalen­geth this honor, & forthwith she spred out hir tayle: When the Egle had heard both their argumentes, hée began first with the Pecocke, and sayd: In setting vp thy tayle thou haste dispraysed thy selfe, for thy filthy féete declare thée vnworthy to bée ruler: Then turning to the Phesant he sayde: bycause thou art weake and al­wayes weeping, and further canste not sing, I depriue thée also of this office. And so both were put out.

[Page 83] Mor. They which wil be lords must not striue.

112 Of the Ape and the Brocke.

THe Ape came to a Brocke to borowe Dettes. an Hundreth markes, bycause hée woulde occupie beyonde the Sea, pro­mysing him halfe the gayne: the Brocke aunswered, I am content, if thou canste fynd sufficient sureties for payment, with an Oblygatyon of theyr handes. The Ape broughte the Bugle and the Bull to bée his suretyes, and left the obligati­on in the custodie of the Horse, and went on his iourney, but neuer returned. The Brocke séeing hym selfe thus deluded by the Ape, did demaunde the dette of the sureties, but they scorned hym, where­fore hée complayned vnto the Judge, and shewed the obligation, who compel­led the sureties to paye it, but they euer after persecuted the Brocke, and woun­ded him sore.

Mor. He that boroweth not, kéepeth hym selfe oute of stryfe and greate trouble.

113 Of the Dog and the Cocke.

THe Dog & the Cock entred friendship & iorneyd togither: when night drew Deceyte. néere, the Cocke flew vp into a trée, and rested, but the dog slept at the roote of the hollow trée. It hapned that the Cocke, as he was wōt, crowed in the night season, whome the Fox hearing, ranne towarde him, and as he stoode on the grounde, he prayed the Cock to come downe, bicause he greately desired to embrace so trim a singing birde: the Cocke bade him that he shoulde first wake the porter, whiche slept at the root of the trée, and that when he had opened he woulde come downe: as the Foxe sought meanes too call hym vp, the Dog starte vp and tore him in pieces.

Mor. Wyse men wil by pollicy send their enimies to myghtier than them­selues.

114 Of the Foxe and the Storke.

A Foxe sometyme bad a Storke to sup­per, when the seruice was broughte in, the Foxe set broth on the table, which bycause it was thyn, the Storke assayed to picke vp with his bill, but coulde not, [Page 85] whiche the Foxe easily licked vp: the o­ther thus deluded, departed with muche shame. Within few days after ye Stork returned and likewise bade the Fox too supper: A glasse full of meate was set on the boorde, which bycause it had a narow necke, the Foxe might well looke on and be hungry, but he coulde not once licke his lips withall, which the Storke with his bill easely pulled out.

Mor. Laughing, iesting, craftie and deceytfull dealing muste be requited with the like.

115 Of a Frier, a Layman, and the Wolfe.

A Certaine religious man of the order Deceytfull persons. of S. Anthonie, begged of a Husband­man a portion of corne, for which he pro­mised to warrant all that he had, especi­ally that his Shéepe that yere should bée safe. The coūtryman giuing credit to his promises, lette his Shéepe stray abroade where they list, wherof the gretest num­ber a Wolf destroyed: the Farmer ther­with chasing, when the nexte yeare the gatherer came for corne, did not only de­nie [Page 86] him his almes, but also blamed him for his foolishe promises. Why what is the matter (quod hée)? The other aun­swered, his shéepe were destroyed by the Wolfe: What the Wolf? (said he) sure­ly that is a naughtie beast, trust him not, but beware of him: for he would not only deceiue S. Anthony but also Chryst him selfe, if hée could. It is therfore follie to credit those whose marke that they shoote at is onely to deceyue.

116 Of a Parat.

A Parat being brought out of the East partes into the West, where no such Deserts re­warded. birds are wont to bréede, maruelled that he was more estéemed there, than in his natiue countrey: for hée was kepte in a Cage of yuorie wrought wyth Syluer­wire, fed with most swéete meate, which thyng happened not to other birdes of the west partes, whiche in beautie and spea­king as farre excelled. Then the Turtle béeing shutte vp in the same cage, sayde: This is not maruel woorthy, for no man in his owne countrey is rewarded as hée deserueth.

117 Of an Asse.

SOmetyme an Asse serued a Gardiner Desire of new things of whose crueltie he complayned to Iu­piter beseching him to haue a new mai­ster. Iupiter graunted his request, & put him to a tyler, whō bicause he laded hym with much heuier burdens, he mislyked: He therefore prayed Iupiter yet once a­geyne, to shift hys seruice from hym to a gentler Mayster. The God smyled at hys follie, yet the Asse continued so long an earnest suter, that he forced him ther­to. Thē he serued a Curryer, whose trade when the Asse had well perceiued, he re­pented, saying: Ah wretche that I am, which can be contented with no maister, for now I haue got suche a one, which as I suppose, will also currie my skin.

Mor. Things presente we neuer al­low, but seeke for new.

118 Of waxe that desired hardnesse.

THe Wax lamented that he was made Desire that is fit. soft, & in danger to be hurt with euery light stroke. On a time he espied yt tyles were made of earthe, muche softer than hée was, who by the heate of the fire were made so harde, that they continued [Page 88] many yéeres, he likewise cast himself in­to the fire, hoping therby to come to that perfection of hardnesse that they were: but the Waxe streight way béeing mel­ted, consumed away.

Mor. We are forbiddē to couet that which is contrary to our nature.

119 Of a Pacient and a Physitian.

A Physitian tooke vppon him to cure a Pacient, who at length dyed: then Dyet. sayd he to the Pacientes kinsfolke: this man caste hym selfe awaye for lacke of good dyet.

Mor. Hée that vseth quaffing and ly­ueth inordinatly, shall neuer be olde, or else shall haue a very shorte lyfe.

120 Of an Asse carying an Image.

AN Asse caryed an Image of siluer on his shoulders, whiche euery one that Dignitie. met it, did worship: wherwith béeing in­solent, he woulde no longer be an Asse: then was it tolde hym that hée was no God, but caried an Idoll.

Mor. They that are placed in dignity ought to know that they are men.

121 Of a Fisher.

A Fisher fished in a certē ryuer, where he spread abroade hys nets and com­passed in the water, tying a stone to ey­ther of his ropes, and thus continued bea­ting the water that the Fishes shooting by, might vnawares fall into his nets: which one of the inhabitauntes therea­bout séeing, rebuked him for troubling ye riuer, that he suffered it not to haue the cléere water: he aunswered: Excepte the riuer be thus troubled, I shoulde dye for hunger.

Mor. The Rulers of Cities doo most of all enriche them selues, when they stirre vp discord amongst the people.

122 Of the Belly and other members.

THe members of man perceyuing the Discord. Belly would not worke, fell at vari­aunce with him and denied their helpe any longer. It happened, that they began to faynt, the cause whereof they percey­ued to bée: that the Belly, hauing recey­ued ye meate, did equally parte it to euery member, whervpon they became friends agayne.

[Page 90] Mor. Great things by discorde de­caye, but small things by concorde are of force.

123 Of the Frog and the Crab.

A Frogge séeing a Crab swimming by the water side, sayd: What is he so yl­fauoured and foule, that dare trouble my water? séeing I am mightie and strong, I will put him to flight. When he had so sayd, he lept vpon the Crab saying: why wast not thou ashamed O wretch, to en­ter into my resting place? Didst not thou blush being so foule and so black, to defile the cleare water? The Crab, as his maner is, began to go backe and sayde: I pray thée sister say not so, for I would be at one with thée, therfore come not thus vpon mée. The Frog séeing him go back, supposed that he did it for feare of him, whereby he waxed more fierse against him, saying: Drawe not back thou filth, for thou maist not escape, this day will I giue thy flesh to the fish, and incontinent he skipped vpō him to kill him. The Crab séeing the present daunger turned about, and with his clawes byt the Frog & tore him in pieces.

[Page 91] Mor. Euery man, as much as in him lieth, let him studie to auoyde warre and discord.

124 Of a Leopard and an Vnicorne fighting with a Dragon.

THe Leopard sometime fought with ye Dragon, against whome (bycause he could not preuayle) he besought the Vni­corne to ayde him, and sayd: Thou art a goodly beast, expert in fighting & valiaūt, wherfore I pray thée helpe me. The Vni­corne hearing this commendatiō of him­self, aunswered: Thou sayst truthe, for I haue skill in fighting, and therfore I wil valiauntly defende thée, for when ye Dra­gon shall open his mouthe, I will thrust him into the throte with my horne. Whē they were both come to the Dragon, the Leopard gaue the onset, trusting to the strength of the Vnicorne, but the Dragō fought with them & spit fire at them. The Vnicorne séeing him open his mouth ran hastely to thrust him through, but he cast his head at one side, whereby ye Vnicorne missing him, smot his horne fast into the ground and died.

[Page 92] Mor. Hée that wil fight for another, séeketh his owne destruction.

125 Of the enuious Dog and the Oxe.

A Dogge lay sléeping in a racke full of hey, thyther came an Oxe to féede. Despite. The Dog séeing him comming, barked & for bad him. To whom the Oxe sayd: the Diuell choke thée with this thy despite, which neyther canst eate hey thy self, nor yet will suffer me.

Mor. Many are of that disposition, yt they will grudge others that, whiche they for lacke of wit can not attayne vnto.

126 Of a yong Man.

A Certen yong Man espied an old man going crooked like a bent bow, whom Despise nothing. he asked if he would sell a bowe? Haste thou (quod hée) any néede to loose thy mo­ney? If thou liue til my age, nature shal giue thée a bowe without money.

Mor. The faultes of age are not to be laughed at, bicause no man, if he liue, can escape it.

127 Of a Countryman and Peares.

A Certein gluttonous man tooke hys iourney to go to a Wedding where­vnto he was biddē. By the way he found an heape of peares, but none of them he touched, albeit he was excéeding hungry, which in cōtempt he made water on, for he thought scorne of such meate, going to so good cheare. But as he passed on his way, he came to a streame lately risen with rayne, whiche without daunger of his life he could not passe ouer, therefore he returned home againe: and by the way he was so hungry (bicause of his lōg fasting) that if he had not eatē the peares that he pissed on, séeing there was no­thing else, he had famished.

Mor. Despise nothing, for what is so vile or base, that will not at one time or another serue for some purpose?

128 Of a man that refused Clysters.

A Certen rich German fell sick, to whō Despray­sers of Phisicke. came many Phisitians to cure him, (for to hony come flies by heapes) amōgst whome one helde opinion that he must take a Clyster, if he woulde récouer hys [Page 94] health: The pacient hearing this (bicause hée had neuer taken any such medicine) was wood angrie, and commaunded all ye Phisitians to be put out of doores, saying that they were mad, whiche would mini­ster to his tayle, when his head aked.

Mor. All holsome things seeme tedi­ous to them which neuer assayed thē.

129 Of a Deceyuer.

A Certein poore man being sick, vowed to the Gods, if he might recouer hys Dissem­blers. health, an hundred Oxen in sacrifice: the Gods (bicause they would trie him) made him whole. When he was well, bicause he had no Oxen, he made an hundred Oxē of paste, which on the Altar he sacrifised. The Gods meaning to punish him ther­fore, appeared to him in a dreame, & sayd: Go to the sea shore in such a place & there thou shalt find an hūdred talents of gold. This fellow when he awaked, reioysing greatly, went to the place yt was shewed him and sought for it, where he was takē by Pirates, whome he prayed for his li­berty, promising thē a M. talents of gold, but to him they gaue no credit, but caried [Page 95] him away and solde him for a M. Grotes.

Mor. God hateth dissemblers & lyers.

130 Of a Cat and Mise.

A Cat hearing that there were many Dissimu­lation. Mise in a certein house, came thither: of which, those that she caught she deuou­red: The Mise séeing them selues dayly diminished, agréed togither to come down no more, least they should al be destroied: for if the Cat come not hither (sayd they) we shall be safe. The Cat perceyuing the Mise descended not, thought by deceyt to take them, and climbed vp on a beame, wheron she hanged hir self, fayning to be dead, whom one of the Mise, as he looked downward espied, and sayd to him: verily my friende, though I knewe thou were dead, yet would I not come downe.

Mor. A wise man once deceyued through the falshood of a wicked man, will neuer after credite hys dissimu­lation.

131 Of the, Wolf and the Sheepe.

A Wolfe being bitten by Dogs and e­uill entreated, laye prostrate along: [Page 96] he lacking meate, espied a shéep, whome he desired to bring him some of the run­ning water to drink, saying: If thou wilt giue me drink, I will prouide meate my self she aunswered: if I giue thée drink, thou wilt eate mée.

Mor. This Fable is against an euil body, whiche by dissimulation lyeth in wayte.

132 Of the sicke Asse.

THe report was, that the Asse lay sick, nigh at the point of death, there came both the Wolues and Dogges to visite him, and demaunded of his Sonne, howe his Father dyd, he aunswered (looking through the chinkes of the doore) better than ye would.

Mor. This Fable speaketh of them, that fayne to take heauily the death of other, where as they wishe them dead long before.

133 Of a Foxe.

A Foxe came into a Vineyarde where he espyed faire clusters of Grapes which were ripe, of them fayne would he [Page 97] eate, and bicause they were past his reach, he thought to find some shift to gette them: but perceyuing his labor to be lost, and that by no meanes he could satisfie his desire, he turned his sorowe into ioye, saying: Those Clusters be yet to soure to eate, for they would set my téeth on edge.

Mor. It is wisdome to dissemble that he careth not for that whiche he know­eth he can not get.

134 Of a man that would kil a Hog.

IT was a custome in a certeyn Citie of Picene in Italie, that he whiche killed a Hog in Winter should bid his neighbours to supper. Now there was one which min­ded to kill a Hog, but lothe he was to be at any charges, wherevppon he asked the ad­uise of his Godfather, how he might shifte of the expences. Tell abroade (quod hée) to morow, that this night there was a Hog stollen from thée. It happened the same night, (he nothing mistrusting it) that one verily conueyed a Hogge from him. In the morning whē he rose, he looked for his hogs, wherof missing one, he wént incōtinent to his Godfather, and cried a loude, that one of [Page 98] his Hogs were stollē. Wel done (quod hée) thou playest y wise fellow, for so I taught thée to speake: the other swore by all the Gods he did not lie. I conne thee thāk (sayd his Godfather) thou followest wel my coū ­sell. The other for all that did sweare and stare the more that it was true. Thou arte to be cōmended (quod hée) for I for warned thée so to saye, and my counsell was good. The other seing him selfe thus flouted, de­parted heauily.

135 Of the Egle that cited al maner of birds.

THe Eagle called togither all manner of wildfoule: which being assembled, as he Disobedi­ [...]nce. corrected certein faultes, there came Hun­ters which set abroade their nets to catche the birds. The Egle seing the present daū ­ger, made proclamation by his criers, that all should follow the banner of the Egle, & flie with hir, if they would escape: then as many as flew with hir escaped, but some gluttonous & disobediēt, who beholding the pray & coueting it, flew into ye nets, wher­in being entangled, they cried piteously.

Mor. Hée that will not obey, falleth into mischief.

136 Of a Satyr and a wayfaring Man.

A Satyr, which in old time was counted Double tonged. God of the Woods, walking abroade, found a wayfaring mā couered with snow & nigh dead with cold: on whom taking pi­tie, he brought him into his denne & made a fire & cherished him. It happened that the Satir espied him breathing on his hands, wher of demaūding the cause, he answered: to heate his hands. And being set downe to meate, the trauayler blowed on fried bar­ley that was on his trencher. He asked a­gaine, why he did so? to coole it (quod he.) Thē the Satir draue him out of his denne, & told him that he would harbor none that had so variable a mouth.

Mor. Deale not with that man, which hath a double hart, or is vnstable in hys wordes.

137 Of a tyrannous Griffon.

THe Griffon sometime tooke vppon him Do as ye woulde be done vnto. the gouernement of a Realme, whiche with Tyrannie he ruled, commaunding that no Straunger should bye or sell any thing amongst them. Secondly, that none shoulde come from other Countreys to them. Thirdly, that none of hys subiectes. [Page 100] should trauell to other places: These thrée things being straightly executed, he liued in pleasure and waxed riche, whereof he neuer gaue any thing. It happened that his Countrey was destroyed by lightning and tempestes, wherefore hys Citizens cried out, that they might trauaile abroade, least they died for hunger. Then he sent Ambas­sadoures to other Nations, desiring to sell them of their marchādise and barter them at their pleasure. But they denied it, by­cause he neuer would sell any thing to thē: then he required that they woulde come with their ware to him, but they woulde not. Last of all he prayed them to receyue him and his people being then in miserie: but they sayd: Thou wouldest neuer come till néede made thée, therefore we will not receyue thée. Then hée and his people being thus reprobate, died miserably.

Mor. We must doo, as we woulde be done vnto.

138 Of a Pie and a Cuckow.

A Pie espying a Cuckow lurking amōgst the boughes of a trée, supposed it to be Doubt the worst. a Hauke, wher with being moued, flewe a­way: [Page 101] which thing other birdes néere at hād beholding, mocked the Pie, that in stead of a Hauke, she flew frō the Cuckow, she an­swered: I had rather be mocked of you, thā my friends should wéepe for mée.

Mor. It is better to minister occasion for our foes to laugh at, than our friends to wéepe at.

139 Of a Serpent.

A Serpent being troden vpon by many, Dreadfulnesse. made his moane to Iupiter, but he sayd to him: If thou hadst stinged him whiche first kicked thée, the next would neuer haue attempted it.

Mor. They which withstande their as­saulters, become a terror to others.

140 Of the rule of womē of their husbands.

A Certein man caried about through the Dread without need. whole worlde a paire of bootes, whiche he woulde giue that man who feared not his wife. He could find none a great while, which would take them. But at length a Countreyman receyued them, to whome he sayde: Soft lette me put them in thy bo­some and wype them. But the Coūtryman [Page 102] (bycause his shirt was new & white) sayd: I dare not least my wife taūt me for blac­king my shirt: thē he tooke away the bootes & bet him therwith, saying: Get thée hence in the Diuels name, bicause thou dreadest thy wife for a litle trifle, thou didst meane to deceyue me of my bootes, and he straight way departed. But I think he hath not yet bestowed them iustly of any man.

141 Of a woman.

A Certen Woman had a dronkard to hir husband, from whiche vice (bicause she Dronken­nesse. would rid him) she vsed this pollicie: She watched him when he was dronken heauy a sléepe, & like a dead man without féeling, and tooke him on hir shoulders, caried him into the churchyard, layde him in a graue & departed. When she supposed that he was sober, she went and knocked at the head of the tombe, who asked, who knocketh at the doore: his wife aunswered, I am here, and haue brought meate for the dead. Ah (quod hée) bring mée rather some drink thā meat, thou doest trouble me in speaking of meate and no drinke. The good woman stroke hir breast and sayd: woe is mée wretch, for my [Page 103] craft will do no good: thou my husband art nothing mended, but become worse, so that this disease hath got an habit in thée.

Mor. We must not continue in euill déeds, for custome sometime créepeth on a man.

142 Of the Bore and the Countryman.

THere was a Bore which routed vp the corne, whose eare a Countreyman cut Dulspirited. off. It chaunced he came againe the second time, then he cut off his other eare. When he came yet againe, he caught him & caried him into the citie and gaue it his Attorney to make mery withall. At the feaste when he was broken vp, his hart was not sound. Then his Maister was wrothe with the Cooke therfore. Sir (quod the Countrymā) it is no maruell yt his hart is not here, for I think the foolish Bore had no harte, for if he had had any, he would not haue come so oft into my corne to his cost. Then all the guestes laughed excéedingly at his foolish­nesse.

Mor. Many liue so without spirite or boldnesse, that it is doubtfull whether they haue a harte or not.

143 Of a Gnat.

A Gnat in the Winterseason, supposing [...]ducation [...] youth. that he should die for hunger and cold, came to a Hyue of bées, of whom he desired meate & lodging, promising (if they would graunt it him) to teache their children the arte of Musicke. Then one of the Bées aun­swered: I had rather my children learned some trade whiche can kéepe them from hunger and colde.

Mor. We are warned to bring vp our children in those sciences, whereby they may be able to get their liuing.

144 Of a Norisher of Bees.

A Certein man, when the Owner was absent, came to the place where hony [...]nimie. was made, and stole away an hony combe: the owner at his returne séeing the hiues emptie, stode vp and sought if ought were left. The Bées returning from féeding, and fynding him there, pricked him with their stings, and handeled him very yll. Then he sayde to them: O vile beastes, whiche haue lette eskape vnhurt him whiche hath stollen your honycombes, and strike me which take care ouer you.

[Page 105] Mor. Some men through follie cannot beware of their enimies, and driue back their friends, as such that lay awayte to deceyue.

145 Of many creeping Wormes and Beastes.

MAny créeping beastes sat a sunning, a­mōgst whom the cockatrice was, who cryed aloude: Who so dare fight with mée, let him come foorth. The Snayle cam forth to fyght with hir: as they were togyther striuyng, ye Cockatrice would haue bit the Snaile, and poysoned him, but he drew his hed into his shell that she coulde not touch him, afterward the Snayle came forth and bit the serpent, wherby she was ouercome. Not long after, she being agein encoraged, excused hir self, that she was not valiantly ouerthrowne: wherfore she sayd: If there were any other warrior amongst thē, shee would reuenge hir self, and make him run away. The Hedgehog hearing this came foorth, who was full of prickles, whom the Serpent assaulted, but the Hedgehog pric­ked hir sore, and wounded hir, wherof she was ashamed: but a Frog willing to be re­uenged [Page 106] of the Serpente, wente on hir, and would haue slayn hir, but she though wea­rie hardned hir heart, and tooke the Frog and deuoured him.

Mor. Hée is a foole which being vnar­med, will assault his enimie.

143 Of the Kings fisher.

THe Kings fisher is a solitarie birde, al­ways liuyng in the sea, whiche as it is sayd, taketh heede of mens huntings, & ther­fore buildeth hir nest vpon the rocks in the sea, who on a tyme being redie to bréed, did make hir nest: As she was gone out to hir pastyme, it chaunced the sea to arise (being stirred wyth a boysterous wynde) aboue hir nest, whiche being drowned, hir yong ones perished. Shée at hir returne, seyng what hadde happened, sayde: Wo is mée wretche, whiche fearing to be betrayed on lande, haue runne to this which is more de­ceiptfull.

Mor Some men taking héede of their foes, doo vn wyttyngly happen vppon friendes who are muche crueller than theyr enimies.

147 Of the Apes and the Libard.

IN the lande of the Moores there is great store of Apes, whose enimie by kynde is the Lybarde, whome bycause hée can not match with strong arme (seing they clymb into high trées) hee practiseth this pollicie against them: he layeth himself along vn­der the boughs, and stretching out his legs faineth himselfe deade. At whiche sight the Apes that sit in the trées, doo much reioyce, then they supposing hym to be deade, sende out a scoute watch to descrie the truth: The Ape commeth tripping warely and softely, who perceiuing no tokē of life, bicause the Libard in al pointes counterfeteth a deade carkas, boldely ventureth to go vpon him: the other Apes séeing his boldnesse, al feare sette aparte, come downe, and leape vpon him, which he quietly endureth: at length when they haue in contempte kicked him so long that they are nigh wearie: he star­teth vp sodeynly, and one with his téeth, an other with his nayles, he teareth in péeces and deuoureth.

Mor. Wée ought chiefly to eschue that enimie, whiche fayneth his strength to fayle.

148 Of the Henne and the Fox.

A For entred into a poultrie house, wher he saw a Henne on hir nest being sicke, whom he asked, how she did: Ah (quod the Hen) I should do much better (sister) were thou gone.

Mor. The presence of our enimies doth much hurte vs.

149 Of two Enimies.

TWo men hating one an other deadly, sayled together in one ship, wherof the one satte in the foreparte of the ship, the o­ther in the hinder parte thereof, sodeinely there arose a tempest, which put the ship in hazarde: then he that set in the sterne, as­ked the master which part of the shyp shold first be drowned, the sterne (quod he:) then he sayd: My death shal nothing gréeue me if I may see myne enimie die before mée.

Mor. Many men care not what harme they haue, so that they may sée theyr e­nimies before them hurte.

150 Of the Crow and the Rauen.

THe Crowe enuied the Rauen bycause by him men tooke diuination, fór which [Page 109] he was supposed to for shew things to com: wherupon he espying trauailers by, flewe vp into a trée, where shée stoode and cryed lyke a Rauen: They at hir crying turning asyde and wondring, at the last vnderstan­standing the truth, one of them sayde: Let vs be going fellows, it was the Crow that cried, and she hath no soothsaying.

Mor. Those men whiche striue with their betters, besides that they are neuer able too matche them, deserue to bée laughed at.

151 Of the Wolfe and the Foxe.

THe Wolfe hauyng muche prouisyon Enuie. of meate, liued at ease, to whome the Foxe came and demaunded the cause of his ease: the Wolfe perceiuing that he enuied his good fare, fayned sickenesse too bée the cause thereof, and hée prayed the Foxe, too beseech the Gods for his health: The Foxe being grieued that his purpose woulde not prosper, went to a Shepeherd, and willed him to go to the Wolues denne, where so­deinly he might take his enimie that liued voyde of care: the shepeherde assaulted the Wolfe, and slue him, the Fox possessed his [Page 110] denne with al the good chere, but he enioyed it no long time, for the same Shepeherde caught him likewise.

Mor. Enuie is a lothesome thing, and hée that is the cause thereof commonly maketh a rod for his owne tayle.

152 Of the Couetous man and the Enuious.

TWoo men made their prayer to Iupiter, a Couetous man and an enuious, who sent Apollo to them to satisfy their desires, he gaue them free libertie to desire vppon this condition, that what soeuer the one re­quired, the other shuld receiue double. The couetous man was long in doute, bycause he thought nothing was ynough: at length he asked no small thyng, hys companyon receyued double so muche. The Enuious man requested one of his owne eyes to be put out, greately reioycing that his fellow shoulde lose bothe.

Mor. Couetousnesse neuer sayth ho: as for Enuie nothing is more mad, which wisheth him selfe mischief to hurte an­other withall.

153 Of the Wolfe and the Asse.

THe Wolfe and the Asse were sawyers togither, but the Asse wrought aboue, and the Wolfe beneath, who sought occa­sion to slea his fellowe, wherfore he sayd: Ah wretched Asse, why doest thou cast dust into myne eyes? Forsooth (quod he) I doo not, but rule it after my knowledge: if it please thee to sawe aboue, I will beneath. Tushe (quod the Wolfe) I sée what thou dost, if thou cast any more into my eyes I will plucke oute thine: when he had thus saide, the Wolfe blew harde, that the dust might flie vp in to his felows eyes, but the timber staying it, it fell into his owne: wherewith béeing sore troubled, he sware, that he would ouerthrow the porters, but sodeinly it fell, and killed the Wolfe.

Mor. Mischief commonly lighteth vp­on the pate of the Author.

154 Of the Lyon and the Wolfe.

THe Lyon béeing stricken in age fell sicke, and laye in his denne, all beastes saue onely the Foxe came to visite theyr Kyng: Wherevppon the Wolfe hauyng [Page 112] oportunitie, accused the Foxe vnto the Ly­on, as one that sette naught by hym béeing theyr Lorde, for whiche cause hée came not to sée him: By chaunce the Foxe came in, and hearde the latter ende of the Wolues tale. Then the Lyon roared ageynste the Foxe, who incontinent crauyng space too make aunswere, sayde: which of all those that are here present, hath done so muche good as I, which haue trauayled farre and néere to seeke a remedie for thée of the phy­sition, which I haue lerned: Then the Li­on commaunding him foorth with to tel the medicine, he sayde: The Wolues skin be­ing yet alyue, to be plucked from his backe and put warme about thée, is the medicine and onely remedy. As the wolfe lay along, the Fox laughed at him, saying: It becom­meth not thee to prouoke thy lord to wrath, but to fauour and good will.

Mor. Hée whiche continually diggeth pits, at length turneth him selfe therein.

155 Of the Harte and the Oxen.

A Harte being pursued of a Hunter, ran Escaping of dangers hard. into an Oxe stall, praying the Oxen to hide him in their rack: they tolde him that [Page 113] there was no safe harboring, for both their maister and his seruants woulde come thi­ther: He answered that he was safe inough so that they woulde not bewray him: the seruāt came in, & mistrusting nothing to be hid in the hey, departed: the Hart was exce­dingly glad, and feared nothing. Then one of the Oxen older and wiser than the rest, sayd to him: It is an easy matter to deceiue him, that is as blinde as a Mole, but if thou escape our maister, which hath an hundred eyes, I will warrant thée: Streight after came in the maister to redresse his seruāts negligence, looked rounde aboute, and gro­ping in the rack, felt the horns of the Hart, & cryed out for his seruantes, who straight way came, tooke the beast and slue him.

Mor. When one is in perill, it is harde to fynde a place to hyde him in, eyther it is that Fortune tosseth the oppressed, or that being afrayd, and vncertaine what to doe, thorough follie they betray them selues.

156 Of the Cock and the Cat.

A Cat sometyme being hungry came to Euill me [...] deuoure a Cock, whome bycause shée [Page 114] had no iust cause to hurt, layd to his charge his great noise that he was wont to make, bycause that with his shrill crowing, he did let men of their rest in the night: the Cock replied that he was therof giltlesse, séeing by that meanes he raised vp men to theyr dayly trauell: It is but lost labor (sayd the Cat) to pleade thus: for thou treadest thy mother, neither art thou so content, but thou medlest with thy sister: the Cock be­ing readie to purge him selfe of that fault, the Cat waxed more eger against him, say­ing: thou striuest against the streame, for this daye I will bee thy préest.

Mor. If any man would beat a dogge, he shall soone fynde a staffe. The euill man by hooke or by crooke, if he list will throw thee downe.

157 Of the Countryman and the Serpent.

AS a Countryman walked aboute his grounds, he found a Serpēt in the snow nigh deade with colde, whiche hée pitying [...]ill for [...]od. much, brought home, and layde him by the fires syde. The Serpent by reason of the fire, came again to his strēgth and venim, [Page 115] coulde no longer endure the heate, but fil­led all the Cottage with his hyssing. The Countryman gotte vp a stake, and ranne at hym, wherwith he stroke him, and then tooke him vp for that displeasure, saying: Wylt thou thus recompence my curtesy? Goest thou aboute to destroy him that sa­ued thy lyfe?

Mor. It chanceth often, if a man saue a théefe from the gallowes, hée will soo­nest séeke his death, and on whom men bestowe moste labour, of him they shall reape least good.

158 Of a Seruant which cast his Ma­sters Asse from a Rock.

A Certeine Husbādmans Seruāt threw From eui [...] to Worse. downe his maisters Asse hedlong from an high Rock, that hée might not dayly bee forced to driue him too and fro, but hée told his maister, that hée fell down him selfe: wherefore his maister dydde cause hym to beare all thyngs on his shoulders, which the Asse was woont before to carrie. The which thyng the euill seruant markyng, sayd: I was not well aduised when I slue [Page 116] my innocent fellow, which eased mée of so great trauaile, I am thus worthily serued.

Mor. Whyles fooles would auoyde a­ny euill, they fall into woorse.

159 Of the Bat, the Bramble, and the Cormoraunt.

THe Bat, the Bramble, and the Cormo­rant entred fréendship togither, and de­termined [...]xercise. to liue lyke merchants, whervp­pon the Bat borowed money, and shipped it, the Bramble toke garmentes, and the Cormorant Brasse, and sailed together. It chanced a greate storme too aryse, that the ship was drowned, and all their goods lost, and they escaped to lande: since which time the Cormorant sitteth on the sea shore, to sée if the sea will caste vp the Brasse any where. The Bat fearing his creditours, sheweth not his head by day light, but goth to feede by nyght: And the Bramble doeth catche hold of the garments of such as are passers by, séekyng if hée can fynde hys owne.

Mor. Wherevnto wée doo apply our selues, in tyme to come wée followe the same.

160 Of the Worme.

THe Worme that lurketh in the durte Experiēc [...] went abrode vpon lande, and said to all beasts, that shée was as learned a phisitian for medicines as euer was Poeen phisitian to the Gods: Why (quod the Foxe) canste thou cure others, & canst not heale thy selfe of thy lamenesse?

Mor. All talke is in vaine, except expe­rience haue ben had before.

161 Of a Dog and a Butcher.

SOmetime a Dogge had stolne a péece of flesh from a Butcher in the market, and streight ran away: the Butcher being cold at the heart with the losse of the thing, first helde his peace: then remembryng hym­selfe, cried out after him, saying: O vile théef, for this time runne safely, thou goest scotfrée for thy swiftnesse, but hereafter I will watche thée narrowtier.

Mor. The burnte hande feareth the fyre.

162 Of Cockles.

A Countreymans sonne rosted Cockles, whome as he heard hissing, he sayd: O [Page 118] O euill beasts whiche when youre housen be burnt do sing.

Mor. All things done out of due order, are to be discommended.

163 Of the Asse and the Fox.

THe Asse the Foxe being entred friend­ship, [...]lshod in [...]lowship. went forth a hunting, whom a Li­on méeting, the Fox séeing the present dan­ger, went to the Lion' and promised to deli­uer ye Asse into his hands, so that she might scape scotfrée: the Lyon agréed: then she led the asse, and caused him to be trapped in a net: but the Lion seing him so fast, that he might not escape, first layd hold on ye Foxe, and after he serued the Asse likewise.

Mor. They which betray their felows vndoo them selues vnawares.

164 Of a Dog and the Asse.

A Bandog (whiche is able too vanquishe [...]alse wit­ [...]sse. not only Wolues, but also Beares) had iornied a long way with an Asse which caryed a sacke full of bread. As they wente on their way, a tempeste arose, then the Asse hapned on a medow, where withgood grasse he filled his belly full: but the Dog [Page 119] desired the Asse to giue him a little péece of bread least he sterued: he not onely denied him that, but also scoffingly counselled him to feede on grasse with him. In the meane tyme the Asse espying the Wolfe cōming, besought the Dog to ayde him. Nay (quod he) thou didst counsel me to feede on grasse to slake my hunger, so I will thee to defend thy selfe with thy yron heeles agaynst the Wolfe.

Mor. They which aide not them which néede help, are wont to be destitute of the succor of others in the time of néede.

165 Of the Dog and the sheepe.

A Dog brought an action ageinst a Shéep for a lofe of bread which he ought him, the sheepe denied it, wherupon they ioyned issue, then the Dog broughte in the Kight, the Wolfe, and the Rauen to beare wit­nesse to the debt, who affirmed it for truth: the Shéepe was condemned, whome the Dog caughte, and pulled the skinne from his backe.

Mor. It is well knowne, that by false witnesse many are oppressed and ouer­come.

166 Of an Asse.

THere was an Asse amongest the Cuma­nes, whiche was weary of his bondage, [...]aults. who by chaunce brake his coller and ranne awaye into the Forrest, where hée founde a Lions skynne, whiche hée made fitte for his bodie, and thus behaued hymselfe lyke a Lyon, puttyng bothe men and peastes in feare with his tayle: For the Cumanes knewe not a Lion. In this wyse hée liued there a good while, bothe counted and drea­ded for a fierse Lyon, vntyll that a cer­tayne Straunger comming vnto that Ci­tie, (whiche oftentymes hadde séene both a Lion and an Asse,) and therefore easy to be known, perceyued by his long hanging eares, and other euidente sygnes, that hée was an Asse, (whom hée did wel beat with a staffe, and deliuered hym to his maister. In the meane tyme the Cumanes laughed excéedingly at the Asse, whiche was sup­posed lately to be a Lion, especially those whom hée had welnigh driuen out of their wyttes.

Mor. Wée can hardely hide those faul­tes, whiche wée haue vsed from oure chyldhood.

167 Of a wicked Man and the Diuell.

A Wicked mā hauing committed many Faultes punished. heynous offences, for which he was of­ten apprehended and committed to prison, where he was kepte very straightly, be­sought the helpe of a Diuell, whiche often had ayded and deliuered him out of trouble. At length he was taken again, who (as he wonted) required succoure of the Diuell: who came to him, carying a great bundell of shooes on his shoulders and sayd: friend, I can helpe thée no longer, for I haue trot­ted to so many places for thy deliueraunce, that I haue worne out all these shooes, and I haue no money left me to bye any more, wherfore thou must néedes perishe.

Mor. Lette vs not beléeue alwayes to scape scotfrée with our faultes.

168 Of a Camell.

WHat time the Camell was first séen, Familia­ritie. he was much dreaded, and bicause of his hugenesse, men fled from him. But in processe of time, his tamnesse being know­en, they tooke a good hart and came to him: afterward vnderstanding the beastes cou­rage, they so farre forth despised him, that [Page 122] they put a byt in his mouth, and deliuered him to be driuen by boyes.

Mor. Custome & dayly cōpanie, make terrible things to be litle set by.

169 Of the Foxe and the Lyon.

THere was a Foxe which had not ben v­sed to the sight of a Lion, whome when he sawe by chaunce once or twise, he qua­ked for feare and fled away: As he mette him ye third time, he stood nothing in doubt of him, but boldly approched and saluted him.

Mor. Familiar conuersation maketh men bold, euen with those whome they were afrayd afore to looke on.

170 Of a Hinde calfe.

SOmetime a Hinde calfe sayd to a Hart, Father thou art borne greater and swif­ter [...]eare. than Dogges, thou hast hornes also to reuenge thée, why then doest thou so feare them? where at he laughed, saying: Thou tellest truthe, but I know this one thing, that as soone as I heare the Dogge barke, I am fayne to flie away, but how it cometh I can not tell.

[Page 123] Mor. They which of nature are feare­full, by no persuasion can be boldned.

171 Of the Lyon and the Frogge.

A Lyon hearing a voyce, came foorth lea­ping, wherewith sodenly afrayde, he stood still, wayting for some straunge sight: at length a litle Frogge came forth of the water: whome when the Lion had espied, (all feare set a parte) he came néerer and dashed him in pieces with his foote.

Mor. This fable for biddeth vayn feare.

172 Of the Egle.

THe Egle for his beautie preferred him selfe before all other birds, which thing al did affirme that it was true, but the Pe­cock sayd to him selfe: Thy feathers make not thée beautifull, but thy bill and thy ta­lands, bicause none of vs dare cōtend with thée about their beautie for feare of them.

Mor. Mightier mens affaires are pray­sed of many, more for feare than truthe.

173 Of a Dog fearing the Rayne.

A Certein Dog as oft as it rayned, durst not come foorth of the house, and being [Page 124] demaunded of an other Dog why he did so, aunswered: bycause sometime I was seal­ded with hot water.

Mor. They which haue tasted of great euils, are afrayd of the smallest.

174 Of a Cock.

A Cock being taken by a Foxe, escaped from him very hardly. Not long after, he sawe a Foxes skin, wherewith beyng sore afrayd, ran away, whome other birds mocked that he was afrayd of nothing. Ah (quod hée) if ye had bin in the Foxes gripes as I haue bin, ye would be afryad of his foote steps, how much more of his skin?

Mor They whiche haue escaped great daungers, dread the least.

175 Of a sick man and the Phisitian.

A Sick man being demaūded of the Phi­sitian how he did, aunswered: that he Flatterie. swette more than néeded. Well (quod the Phisitian) that is good. The second time being asked, how he did, sayd: I shiuer and quake sore: that is good (quod the other.) The third time he demaunded his patient as before, who aunswered, that he had the [Page 125] dropsy: that is also good sayd the Phisitian. Then one of the household asked him, how hée did: in fayth (quod hée) through so many good things I perish.

Mor. We ought chiefly to abhorre thē which only speake to delight the eare.

176 Of the Rauen and the Foxe.

A Rauen sometime hauing got his pray, made a great noyse in the boughes, whom the Foxe séeing thus reioyse, ranne vnto hir and sayd: I gréete you with al my harte, I haue often heard reports to be vn­true, but now in déed I find it: for as I pas­sed by this way, by chaunce I espied thée in a trée, I am therfore come vnto thée, being offended with reporte: for they saye that thou art blacker than pitch, but in my sight thou art whiter than snowe. In my iudge­ment thou passest the Swā, thou art fairer than white Iuie: If thy voyce were agrea­ble to thy beautie, I would sooner acounte thée the Quéene of al birds. The Rauen al­lured with this smoothe tale, prepared him self to sing. In the meane while the praye fell out of his bill, whiche the Foxe caught vp, laughing excéedingly, whereof the silly [Page 126] Rauen being ashamed, repented his follie.

Mor. Eschewe vaynglorie, and that venemous secte of Flatterers may ease­ly be auoyded: but if thou couet to be magnified, Maister Parasite wil wayte on you at an ynche.

177 Of a man and his two Wiues.

A Certen man of middle age being dain­tily brought vp, whose hayre was halfe Fellowship of women. black halfe graye, maried two wiues at once in the spring tune, whereof the one was yōg, the other old, which both dwelled togither in one house: the elder bicause she wold allure him only to loue hir, dayly kē ­med his head, & plucked out yt black haires. The yonger likewise (bicause she woulde entise him to hir, from the olde womans companie) plucked out his white haires. At length betwene them, they had plucked off so much haire, that he became balde and a common mocking stocke.

Mor. Nothing is better for olde men, than to leaue the companie of women, especially those that be yong, excepte he wil be cloyed.

178 Of a Souldiour.

A Certein Souldiour being bidden of his Flying of daunger. fellowes, to helpe them at a certen Ci­tie of Italie, which fell away from the king of Fraunce, aunswered them: If the right Lord of the soyle shal besiege the citie, who shall bring vs helpe? They sayd: The king of Fraunce. Then the Souldiour climed vp on a Tombe and cried thrice with a loude voyce, O king of Fraunce but when no an­swere was giuen him, he turned to them that had him, saying: I will not come thi­ther, when hée that should helpe mecā not heare me requiring ayde. The other which went thither, were besieged of the Lord of the towne, which being wonne, they were taken and killed.

Mor. They are fooles which like Hare­braines put themselues in daunger.

179 Of Trauailers.

TWo men iourneid togither, whereof Fellowship. the one founde an Axe, the other war­ned him that he shoulde not saye, I haue found, but we haue founde. Straight af­ter, as they came togither to those whiche [Page 128] had lost it, he which had the axe, following his fellow which iorneyed with him, sayd: we are vndone, nay (quod the other) saye I am vndone not wée: for when thou found­dest the axe, thou didst saye, I haue founde, not wée.

Mor. They whiche were no parteners in prosperitie, are no sure friendes in miserie.

181 Of a Lyon and a Beare.

A Lion and a Beare hauing got a Hind­calfe Fighting. did fight togither for him. When they had long fought and were giddy and wearie, they laye downe to rest. But the Foxe went aboute them, and séeing them layd flat with the Hindecalf in the midst, ranne betwene them and tooke away the Calfe, they might sée him, but coulde not a­rise, wherefore they sayd: what fooles are we to labor for the Foxe?

Mor. Fooles lay the pooles, but wise mē haue the fishe.

182 Of a rich man and his seruaunt.

A Riche man hadde a dulhead to his ser­uaunt, whom he vsed to cal the king of Follie. [Page 129] foolish: He being often offended with hys wordes, thought he would be euē with his maister, and on a time he turned again to him and sayde: I woulde I were King of fooles, then in all the worlde there were no greater kingdome thā myne, yea and thou also shouldest be in subiection to mée.

Mor. Al things are full of follie.

183 Of a woman that bet hir Husband.

A Certen Woman of a manly courage, Fooles. hadde shrewdly beaten hir Husbande, which was a coward and dolte, bicause the Kight had stollē one of the chickens, which she going foorth, left him to tende: where­fore when his Wife was absent agayne, he tyed all the chickens to one thréed, and kept them more diligently, least the Kight should snatche any of them whiche he was put in trust to kéepe: but the Kight com­ming sodenly, caught one in his clawes, whiche as he would haue caried away, he drew vp all the rest togither into the Aire. This wretched husband remembring that for one chickē lost he was so yll handeled of his wife, was afrayde of more mischief to come, and thought it therfore better to die, [Page 130] thā to trie his wiues fury again. Now this witty woman had put certen figs in a litle pot, wel dressed with hony and swéet spices, whereof she warned hir wise husbande, whose lickerousnesse she feared, yt he should not taste thereof, bicause presente poyson was in them. Hir husband willing to die, did eate vp all the figs, supposing that to be the best way to die & to escape his wiues anger. When the woman came home and knew that the Kight had snatched away al hir chickens, she tooke vp a staffe and de­termined to beate hir husband, bicause he kept the chickens so yll: to whome hir foo­lish husband sayd: I praye thée wife beate me not now being ready to die, for I haue eaten vp all the poyson in the glasse, to pu­nish my selfe for my faulte. Then the wo­man turning hir anger into laughter, for­gaue hir husband, whiche for kéeping hir chickens yll, otherwise contented hir.

Mor. There is no fitte remedie a­gainst fooles.

184 Of Fishers.

SOmetime Fishers went a fishing: wher­with Fortune. being weary and hadde caught no­thing, [Page 131] they were very sorie and minded to departe: forthwith a Tunny being chased by an other great fishe, skipped into their boate, whom they tooke & departed merily.

Mor. Fortune commonly giueth that, which by cunning can not be got.

185 Of a riche man and a poore.

A Certen man being maruellous weary Fortune frowneth on the poore. of the great abundance of his riches, offered a begger an. 100. crowns, if he wold go to Fortune (whiche dwelled in the fur­thest partes of the world) and beseche hir in his name to bestowe no more goods vppon him. The poore man being agast bicause of the trauaill of so long a iourney, refused at the firste: but afterwarde chaunging his minde, and promising that he would goe, the riche man sayd he would giue but. 90. The poore man supposing it to be a small rewarde for so great paynes, first woulde not agrée therevnto, but after requiring 90. the rich man could hardly be persuaded to giue him. 80. The begger refusing that summe, and after requiring it, the other rebated always ten frō the number which he offred, till it came but to ten pieces.

[Page 132] At length the begger, whiche refused. 100. Crownes, being forced by pouertie, tooke the. 10. Crownes, and went vnto Fortune, whome with many prayers he besought to giue no more goods to the riche man, but rather that she would be bountiful to him, which from his tender age had liued in con­tinuall pouertie, whō fortune aunswered: I haue determined to double yea & treble the riche mans goods whiche sent thée whe­ther he will or not, but thée will I make to liue continually in extreme pouertie: be­sides that, thou shouldest neuer haue had y 10. Crownes which thou receyuedst, had I not ben very fast a sléepe.

Mor. Against a miserable person For­tune always frowneth, but to a Fortu­nate person she is cōtinually beneficiall euen against his will.

186 Of a Phisitian.

A Phisitian hauing the cure of a sick mā, whose chaunce was to die, sayd to them Friendes. which caried the corps, this mā if he had re­frayned wine & taken clisters, had bin aliue at this day: thē one of thē that were by an­swered: Sir your aduise shoulde haue ben shewed whē it might haue done good, & not [Page 133] now when it is too late to call him backe.

Mor. Friendes should helpe in time of néede.

187 Of the Countryman and the Mouse.

THere was a Countreyman very poore, but yet so merie conceyted, yt in his most miserie he forgat not his natural pleasant­nesse. It happened that his ferme house by chaunce was set on fire, whiche burned so sore, that he mistrusted ye quenching, which with heauie chéere he beheld. In the meane time he espied a Mouse running out of the ferme, which made hast to escape burning. The Countryman forgetting his losse, ran after the mouse, caught him, and flong him into the midst of the fire saying: Thou vn­thankfull beast, in time of my prosperitie thou dwelledst with me, now bicause For­tune is chaunged, thou hast left my house.

Mor. Those are no true friends which cleaue to thée like a burre in thy felicity, but in aduersitie swiftly runne away.

188 Of the Lyon and the Hogge.

THe Lion intended to get him a compa­nion, wherevpon many beastes desired [Page 134] to be matched with him, yea and instantly required it, but he sette light by them, and chose only yt hog into his fellowship, wher­fo being demaūded ye cause answered: this beast is so faithfull that he neuer forsaketh his friends or fellowes in the greatest daū ­ger that can be.

Mor. We séeke the friendship of those men which in time of néed cleane to vs, and not those which giue vs the slippe.

189 Of the Dog that deuoured the sheepe.

A Certen shepherd gaue his Dog charge Friendship fayned. ouer his shéep to looke to thē, for whiche he fed him with the best meate. Neuerthe­lesse the Dog often killed a shéepe and de­uoured him, whiche when the shepherd had espied, caught the Dogge and woulde haue killed him. Why (quod the dogge) wouldest thou destroy me? I am one of the houshold, stay the wolf rather which continually ly­eth in wayte to destroy thy shéep. Nay (quod the shepherd) I think thée rather worthy of death than the wolf, for he is my open eni­mie, but thou vnder the colour of friend­ship doest dayly decrease my flocke.

[Page 135] Mor. They are more greuously to be punished which vnder ye pretence of friēd­ship do hurt vs, than those whiche shewe them selues to be our open enimies.

190 Of the Larke.

A Lark being caught in a net, wept and sayd: Woe is mée wretch and vnhappy Gayne. birde, for I haue taken from no man either gold, siluer, or any other precious thing, but for a litle grain of corne I must die.

Mor This fable is against those which for a trifling gayne put them selues in daunger.

191 Of a wilde Asse.

A Wild Asse séeing a tame Asse in a sūny place, went to him and accounted him blissed, bicause he had good féeding and was in good lyking: after ward seing him beare burthens, and the horsekéeper follow, stry­king him with a staff, he sayd: I think thee now no more happy, for. I sée yt with much sorow thou enioyest this felicitie.

Mor. Gayn full of miserie and daun­ger, is not to be followed.

192 Of the Théefe and the Dog.

A Théefe somtime offred a Dog a piece of bread to stop his mouth withall, to whom he answered: I know thy pretence, thou giuest me a piece of bread to leaue my barking, but thy gift I vtterly abhorre, for if I receyue this bread, thou wilt carie a­way all things out of this house.

Mor. Take héede that for a litle lu­cres sake thou loose not a great thing: beware how thou trustest euery man: for some there are whiche vnder a co­lour, not only will pretende friendship in worde, but also in déed.

193 Of the Wood and the Countryman.

WHat time as trées had their proper language, a Countryman came into the Woode and required a handle for his Axe, they graunted his requeste. When he had well mended his Axe, he began to cut downe the trées: then the Wood al too late repented his gentlenesse, and was full sory that he had made a rod for his owne tayle.

Mor. Take héed whō thou pleasurest, for many hauing receyued good turnes, haue abused it to ye destructiō of ye giuer.

194 Of a Country man and a Counseller.

A Certaine countreyman being in lawe vp to the eares, came to a Counseller, to the end that by his help he might winde him selfe out of the lawe. But this Coun­seller being otherwise occupied, sente hym woorde that he had no leysure to talk with him now, praying him to returne an other time. The Countreyman accounting him for his sure friend, came often, but coulde not speake with him. At length he retur­ned ageyne and brought with him a yong sucking Kid and fat, with which he stood at the Lawyers gate, and often plucked him to make him bleate: the Porter (whome his master commaunded to open the gates to them that broughte presentes) hearyng the voyce of the Kid, streight way opened the gate, and bade him come in: Then the Countryman turned to the Kid, and sayde: I thank thée my little Kid, for thou art the cause that I come in so lightly.

Mor. Nothing is so hard, but with gifts it is mollifyed.

195 Of Iupiter.

WHat tyme as Iupiter made a feast at a mariage, al beasts brought in their [Page 138] presents, euery one after his habilitie, among whom the Serpent was: with a rose in his mouthe, whiche he offered: Iupiter seeing him, sayde aloude, euery mans be­neuolence I williugly accept, but thine in no wise I will receiue.

Mor. The wise man may well gesse that the wicked offer nothing without a crafty pretence.

195 Of Flies.

FLies flew into a hole ful of honie, wher­of they did eate: their féete stucke fast Gluttonie therein, that they coulde not escape, who being nigh choaked, sayde: Ah wretches, which for a little meate doe perishe.

Mor. Gluttonie is the cause of muche euill to many.

196 Of Landbirds and Waterfoules.

THe Birds of the lande were offended that the Waterfoules did féede both on water and on lande, whervpon they sente for them, and after communication hadde, they gaue thē warnyng to medle no more vpon lande, vpon payn of their liues. Dere sisters (quod they) this talke lyketh not vs [Page 139] very well, neuerthelesse if ye will vouche­safe to take parte with vs, our hearts shal be much lightened, and we the better con­tented to obey your request. The Birds of the lande by reason of theyr gluttonie, de­siryng to eate of the meate in the water, flew altogither with them into the water, but bicause they coulde not swimme, they were in great hazard of drowning, wher­fore they besoughte them to take pitie on them: the Waterfoules being mercyfull, tooke them vp on their backes, and brought them to lande: for whiche déede the Land­birdes gaue vnto the Waterfoules frée libertie to feede bothe on the water and on the lande.

Mor. Gluttonous persons thynke all too little that goeth besides their owne mouth.

197 Of the Egle and the Rauen.

AN Egle came down from an high rock Glorieng. and light on a lambs back, which thing the Rauen séeing, desired to counterfet him in his dooings, and discēded vppon a Ram, where bicause his claws stuck fast, he was caught and cast out to play withall.

[Page 140] Mor. Let no man account of himselfe by an other mans manhod, but by his own power. Cut thy cote after thy cloth.

198 Of two Yong men.

TWo yong mē came into a Cookes shop as though they woulde haue boughte God kno­weth all. meate, the Cooke béeing occupied, the one stole a péece of meate out of the basket, and gaue it his felow to hide vnder his garmēt: the Cooke perceiuing y a péece of flesh was gone, accused them bothe of theft: then hée that tooke it, swore by Iupiter he had it not: the other that had it, swore that he tooke it not, wel (quod the Cooke) the théefe I know not, but he that you haue sworne by, bothe sawe and knoweth the théefe.

Mor. If we haue ought offended, men know it not streight way, but God that rideth on the heauens and beholdeth the depthes of the sea, séeth al things: if men would remember this, they woulde of­fende lesse.

199 Of Money.

SOmetyme Money being demaunded of vertue, why she rather went to the euill Goods euil gotten. than the good, aunswered: bycause good men [Page 141] brought vp in thy schoole neuer learned too lye and for swere, and to occupy vsurie, and to robbe others, for these things are wont to draw me vnto them: forsooth (quod ver­tue) I had rather that my scholers lyued in pouertie, than they shoulde defile them sel­ues with these vices, for both of them haue a short ende: the good leauing euerlastyng glorie vpon earth, flie vp to the kingdome of heauen: but the euill with slaunder y­nough, leauing their riches, shal go downe to the bottome of Hell.

Mor. Gather riches after no yll way, for it will not only bring in this lyfe an euill reporte, but also after death perpe­tuall torment.

200 Of the Thorne and the wilde Gote.

A Wild Gote somtime came to a Thorn which was new sprong vp, whereof he fed him selfe ful: Not long after, the Gote remembring the good taste of the Thorne, returned vnto it, mynding to féede thereof as before, but the Thornes being hardned, stoocke fast as shée would haue swallowed them in hir throte & the roofe of hir mouth: The Gote with payne thus vexed, spake [Page 142] opprobriously ageynst the Thorne, saying: Ah wretche, thy beginning was good, but now thou hast little vauntaged me.

Mor. Many men likewise begin wel, but their end is yll, whereby they bring the curse vpon them.

201 Of a Gote and a Vine.

THe Vine sayd to the Gote, thou hurtest me by shearing my leaues: thou kno­west I am no grasse, but though thou doo me this harme, I will prouide great plen­tie of Wyne to sacrifice thée to the Gods.

Mor. Commonly a man helpeth hym, to whome he would do some mischiefe.

202 Of the Ant.

AN Ant being thirstie came to a wel to drinke, wherin by mischaunce he fell, Good turne. whiche a Doue far off espying, cast downe a bough from an high tree, and holpe him: the Ant clymed vp theron, & escaped. Im­mediatly after, a Fowler set vp his nettes to catche the Doue: then the Ant for to re­compence his benefactoure, came softely stealyng on the Fowler, and bit his foote, wherby the Doue flew away.

[Page 143] Mor. We must requite a good turne with the like.

203 Of a Gardiner.

A Gardiner taking a Mole wold haue kil Good Will. led bir, to whome she saide, I pray thée good maister, kill not me thy poore seruant which haue so faire a skin, and doth digge vp thy gardins for nothing: Ah (quod the Gardiner) thou shalt not pacifie me with these flattering words, bycause that in dig­ging vp my gardins ageinst my will, as thou sayest, thou rootest vp al the herbes to feed thy self, & to bring me to beggers state.

Mor. In all things the good will of men is to be marked.

204 Of Mise that would hang a bell aboute a Cats neck.

THe Mise assembled together and tooke Great tal­kers. counsel by what policie or cunning they might escape the Cats wyles: then one which in age and experiēce passed the rest, sayd: I haue found a way which shall saue vs harmlesse from so greate dangers, if yée will be ruled by mee: lette vs hang a Bell aboute hir necke, by the sounde whereof, wée shal know and perceyue the comming [Page 144] of the Catte: then all with one voyce com­mended his counsel as good, and sayde, they must so doe. Then an other elder than the rest starte vp, commaunding silence, and sayde: I also allowe this opinion, but who will be so hardie, that dare hang the Bell about the Catts neck? but when euery one refused to do it, their talke was in vaine.

Mor. Many cōmend those things that ought to be done, but few are founde to execute the same.

205 Of Fishers.

ON a tyme Fishers drew their nets out of the sea, whiche they perceiuing to be Griefe for sodaine chaunce. heauie, reioyced greately, supposyng they had a great multitude of Fishes, but when they drew the nette to lande and founde a great stone but few Fishes, they waxed he­uie, not for the small number, but bicause it fel out otherwise than they iudged: then one of the company being an auncient mā sayd: let vs not be grieued: for sorow wai­teth vpon pleasure, and therfore we ought to be sory in some thing, bicause we reioy­ced so much before.

Mor. We ought not to be greued, being [Page 145] defeated of our purpose.

206 Of the Tygre and the Foxe.

A Hunter pursued wylde Beastes with dartes, wherevppon the Tygre com­maunded all other beasts to depart, and he only would end that fight: the Hunter stil cast his dartes, the Tygre foorthwith was wounded: As hée fled out of the fielde and drewe oute the darte, the Foxe asked who had so sore wounded so valiant a beast: he aunswered, that the doer he knew not, but by the greatnesse of the wounde, he toke it to be some man.

Mor Strong men for the most part are more hardy than néedeth, but cunning pas­seth force, and policie strength.

207 Of the wolfe and the Sow.

AS a Sowe was ready to farrowe, the Hastinesse Wolfe came vnto hir, promisyng to be a safegarde for hir yong Pigges: she an­swered: Of thy seruice I haue no néede, but if thou wilte be accoūted religious, or shewe mée any pleasure, I pray thée de­part further from mée, for with thyne ab­sence thy seruice shall stande mée in bet­ter [Page 146] stede than with thy presence.

Mor. All men deserue not credit in all things: for many promyse their endeuor not for thy sake, but for their owne com­moditie.

208 Of a Cat.

A Certein man hadde a great Chéese in a ceffer, which a Mouse had tasted, ther­fore by the coūsel of a friend of his, he shut in the Cat there, which after she had killed the Mouse, deuoured the whole Chéese.

Mor. Those oughte to bée no kepers, which can no lesse hurt vs than our eni­mies.

209 Of a Man that would trye his Wiues mynde.

A Certein crafty man desirous to vnder­stande his Wiues mynde, bycause shée Hasty [...]. had often sayd that so derely shee loued him that if shée might wish shée would redéeme his life with hir death, he willingly let fall vpon both their bare féete a burning stick. Then the woman being in paine, and for­getting the loue she bare to hir husbande, didde shake off the burning sticke from hir féete onely.

Mor. Credite not women when they [Page 147] say they loue their husbands better than themselues.

210 Of the Cock and the Capon.

A Cock and a Capon dwelled together in a poultry house, but the Cock was lord of the Hens, and the Capon fed amongst them: It happened that a Fox caught this Cock, and deuoured him, and his combe he touched not, but kept it safe and brought it to the Capon, saying: O brother capon, thy fellow is dead, wherfore I haue broughte thée his combe euen for pure loue which I beare to thée, nowe if it please thée to come downe, I wil crown thée, that thou mayst take the regiment of the Hens as the cock dyd: the Capon being ambitious & gréedie of promotiō, flew down from his roost, and cam to ye Fox, who reioycing therof, caught the Capon incontinent, and killed hym.

Mor. Take hede how thou credit al mē.

211 Of the Fouler and the Larke.

A Fowler set his nets for birds, whom ye Larke a far of espying, asked him what he did, he answered, yt he built a Citie, then he went a good way back, and bid himselfe: the Lark crediting his woordes came to the [Page 148] nette and was taken: too it the Fowler ranne, to whom the Larke sayd: Friend, if thou buylde suche a Citie, thou shalte fynde fewe dwellers therein.

Mor. Houses and Cities then chiefly become desolate, when the Rulers are busy bodies.

212 Of a Goose.

THere was a Goose whiche day by day layde a golden Egge: hir maister desi­rous Hast ma­eth wast. in all the haste to be riche, killed the Goose, hopyng that there was some hidden Treasure within hir: and then finding hir emptie, the wretche was amazed, and af­ter mourned and syghed, that he had loste both his hope and substance.

Mor. Wee muste measure oure affecti­ons and that we be not to hastie, for hast maketh wast, and he that all wold haue, sometyme loseth all.

213 Of a woman and hir Louer.

A Lewde woman wept bitterly for hir louer ready to depart from hir, whom Harlots. she had nere polled of al that he had: wher­vppon hir neighbour demaunded the cause [Page 149] why shée wept so comfortles, for sooth (quod shée) his departing doth not greue me, but the cloke which I left him to put on.

Mor. Harlots loue not their louers, but their Money.

214 Of a Serpent and a Husbandman.

A Serpent lurking in the entry of a hus­bandmans Hatred. house, slue his boye, for whome his parentes mourned muche, but his father for sorow tooke an axe, went out & would haue killed the Serpent, the Hus­bandman seeing him looke vp, made hast to strike hym, but he missed him, for he stroke the mouth of his hole: when the Serpente was gone in and the Husbandeman thin­king that he had forgot the wrong, he came and set bread and salte before his hole, but the Serpent softely hissing, sayde: Hereaf­ter neither trust or friendship shall bee be­twéene vs as long as I see a stone and thou thy sons graue.

Mor. None forgetteth hatred or ven­geance as long as he séeth the cause of his gréefe.

215 Of a Man and a Woman twice maried.

A Certain man hauing buried his wyfe, whiche hée loued wel, and maried a wi­dow [Page 150] which dayly layd in his dish the māly­nesse of hir former husband: he bycause he wold be euē with hir, dasht in hir teeth his other wiues honest behauiour and chast li­uing. It happned on a time, when she was angry, a begger came too the dore, & asked theyr almes, to whome she gaue a peece of Capon which she for hir owne supper and hir husbandes boyled, saying: I giue thée this for the soule of my first husband: Hir good man hearing that, called the poore mā and gaue him the rest of the Capon, saying: I giue thée this for the soule of my Wyfe that is dead: By whych meanes either spy­tyng other, at length had nothing for theyr supper.

Mor. We muste not fight with those that can reuenge their quarell.

216 Of a Wolfe and Dogs.

A Wolfe espyed twoo Dogs, which were kéepers of the flock of shéepe, fighting together, and with theyr byting tearyng eche other, was in good hope that he might safely assaulte the shéepe. Therefore with greate violence he ran vpon the shéepe, and tooke a fat one quickly, with whiche he fled [Page 151] away spéedily. The Dogs seing that, lefte off their stryfe, and ouertooke the Wolfe runnyng away, whome they wounded so sore that he could scarce escape: but streight after being demaunded by an other Wolf why he sette on the flocke alone, where so strong resisters were? In fayth (quod he) I was deceyued by their mutuall fighting.

Mor. The hatred whiche we beare to straungers, are woont to set at one the debate betweene neighbours.

217 Of the Countryman and the Horse.

A Countryman draue by the way a spare Helpe in neede. Horse, and an Asse sore laden wyth packs, the Asse being weary with trauay­ling, prayed the Horse if he would saue his lyfe, to ease him somewhat of his burthen, the Horse thoughte skorne and denyed his helpe: It hapned as they trauayled on in their iorney, yt the Asse being ouerladen, fel vnder his burthen & dyed: then his master layde al ye asses burthen & eke the skin vpon the horse, wherwithall his backe began to crack: Ah wretch yt I am, sayd the Horse, I am thus iustly serued, bycause lately I re­fused to help the poore laboring Asse.

[Page 152] Mor. We must help oure frends that are in miserie, for part of our rising our country claimeth, and part our friends.

218 Of a Fox that fell into a Well.

A Foxe being falne in to a Well, and at the poynt to be drowned, besought the Wolfe which was on the welles brink to cast downe a rope and helpe him vp: The Wolfe sayd: How fellest thou in here? Ah (quod the Foxe) this is no time to tell thée, but when thou hast drawne me out, I wil shew thée all things in order.

Mor. Men in danger had néed of present help, & not spend the tyme in ydle talke.

219 Of a Pig and his fathers will.

A Pig wept muche for the death of his parents, but when he had red his will Heritage. and founde that a greate heape of Acornes and many bushels of meale were left him, he held his peace: and being asked why hée wept no more, answered: The meale and the Acornes haue stopped vp my mouth.

Mor. A greate heritage causeth the heyres quickely to leaue theyr mour­ning.

220 Of the Cockatrice and Seawolf.

THe Cockatrice on a time went to the Hipocrisie. sea side in the clothing of a Monke, and called to him the Wolf saying: O brother, since thou wast marked with the signe of the crosse, thou art become a perfecte Chri­stian, I pray thee therefore come vnto mee, and instruct me in the faith of Christe, that I may be baptized, and therby escape euer­lasting iudgement, and haue fruition of e­ternall ioye. The Wolf fishe marking him well and knowing what he was, sayde: O thou Hipocrite, a coule maketh not a Fri­er, thy wordes are full of wickednesse and craft, neyther entendest thou to be baptized of me, but rather thou wouldst begyle and poyson mée: therfore I wil not heare thée, and forth with he swam away, and left him all ashamed.

Mor. Beware of those which come in shéeps clothing outwardly, but in ward­ly are rauening wolues.

221 Of the Wolf and the Dog.

A Wolf met a dog by chaunce very ear­ly Home is homely. going through a Wood, whō he cur­teously saluted, being very glad of his cō ­ming: [Page 154] at length he asked him by what meanes he was in so good lyking: he aun­swered, that his maister loued him dearly, for whē he fawned on him, he stroked him, and fed him with meate frō his table, and that he neuer slept by daylight: moreouer, time would not serue to tell how muche I am made off by all the seruauntes. Mary sayd the Wolfe, thou arte happie in déede, which hast so good and so louing a maister, if I might dwell with him, I would think my selfe the happiest of all liuing beastes. The Dog perceyuing the Wolf very desi­rous to chaunge his accustomed trade of li­uing, promised his help to bring it to passe, that he might be retayned to his maister, so that he were content to become tamer, & to liue in bondage: The Wolfe was con­tent and it pleased him well to walke to­warde the Towne. By the way they had very pleasaunt talke, but when it waxed light day, the Wolfe perceyued the Dogs necke worne bare, wherevppon he asked him, what ment this barenesse of his neck, he aunswered, the cause is, that when I was fierce, I barked at my friends as well as my fees, and sometime did byte them, [Page 155] wherewithall my Maister not well plea­sed, did beate me often, forbidding me to assaulte any, saue a théefe or a Wolfe, and by this meanes I am tamer and cary the mark in remembraunce of my fiercenesse: the Wolfe hearing him say so, told him he would not bye his Lords loue so deare, say­ing, farewel therfore, for I esteeme my li­bertie far better than this bondage.

Mor. Better is a drie morsell in a lowe house where a man is ruler, than in the kings pallace to fare delicatly, and to be in seruitude: for libertie in the courte hath no place.

222 Of a Lynnet.

A Certē Linnet was kept vp daintily by Hunger. a rich man, who much delighted in his singing. It happened in time of dearth, that many poore birds came to ye Linnet & asked his almes, but nothing would he giue thē, saue of the fragments & broken meate that was lefte, whiche he cared not for, but the birds reioysing therof, eate it vp swéetely.

Mor. It is an yll dish, which a man wil refuse when he is hungry.

223 Of a Mule.

A Mule being fat and pricked with pro­uender, Honor. cryed aloude and sayde: My [Page 122] Father is a swift running horse, and I am altogither like him, but once when he shold néedes runne, and in running stayed, he straight way remembred that he was an Asses foale.

Mor. Though time bring a man to promotion, yet ought he not to forget his estate, for this life is vnstable.

224 Of a King and Apes.

A Certein King of Egipt appointed Apes to be taught to daunce, whiche as no beast is of liker fauoure to a man, so none counterfaiteth better or willinglier a man in his dooings. They hauing learned very quickly the arte of dauncing: on a daye ap­pointed they beganne to daunce and were clad with the richest purple. Their daun­cing delighted the companie a long time, vntill a merie conceyted fellow cast down amongst them nuts, whiche he priuily had caried in his bosome: the Apes had no soo­ner seene the nuts, but forgetting ye daūce, became as they were afore time: of daun­cers, Apes, byting and tearing their clothes, in pieces, & fighting togither for the nuts, not without great laughter of ye beholders.

[Page 157] Mor. The giftes of Fortune chaunge not a mans disposition.

225 Of Oxen.

A Heardman entred the stable and saw the Oxen skipping for ioy, he therefore axed them the cause of their ioy, they an­swered: Our hope is to spende this daye in the goodly leasues. Why (quod hée) What thing hath brought you to this hope? We dreamed sayd they, it should be so: Ah (quod hée) giue no credit to such dreames, whiche ye are like to finde vntrue, for I dreamed that ye should ploughe to daye, and mens dreames are wont to be truer thā beastes.

Mor. Nothing is so soone begyled, as the hope of men.

226 Of a Hogge.

A Hog was blamed of a shéep that he yel­ded no profit to his Maister, of whome he was so diligently fed: séeing they gaue him milke, wooll and lambes. He aunswe­red: when I am dead, my fruite commeth in, for he féedeth me for a purpose.

Mor. None wil take paynes without hope of reward.

227 Of a man which hid a treasure.

A Certein rich man hid a treasure in the wood, wherof none knew but his God­father, whom he greatly trusted. But whē he came within few dayes after to sée it, he found that it was digged vp & caried away: he therfore iudged (as it was in deed) that his Godfather had taken it away: he went and spake with him, saying: Godfather, I will also hide a. 1000. crownes more where my treasure is. Hée being desirous to gayn more, brought again the treasure and layd it where it was: whē the true owner came shortly after thither and found it, he tooke it home with him and went to his Godfa­ther and sayd: Thou promisie breaker, be­stow no more labor in vayne to goe to the treasure, for thou shalt find it no more.

Mor It is an easy thing to deceyue a coueious man with hope of money.

228 Of the Pigarde and the Egle.

THe Pigard sometyme being pursued by a Hauke, flyed to the Eagle for sa­liegard, Humilitie. saying: Thou arte great and mer­cifull, therefore came I to thée for ayde and [Page 159] succoure, which am small and weake, cra­uing that I may be vnder the shadowe of thy wings, to defende me from the furie of my enimie. The Eagle moued with pitie and compassion, sayd: Bicause of thy low­linesse and imbecillitie abyde with mée, & feare nothing as long as thou arte in my companie.

Mor. They that are mightie, ought to defende the méeke and lowly.

229 Of the Dog and the Cooke.

A Dog brake loose and ranne into a kit­chen, Heart. where he stole away a Harte whiles the Cooke was otherwise occupied, who turning about and séeing him run­ning, sayd: Truste me, where soeuer thou become, I will watche thée, for thou haste not taken a harte from mée, but rather gy­uen me a harte.

Mor. Often harmes are warnings to a man.

230 Of a man stoned.

A Certeyn man being stoned to death of the people, rose agayne: who beyng [Page 150] asked of one, what did most gréeue him in that stoning, sayd: Nothing so much as the stone which one did throwe whome I sup­posed to be my friende, although it touched mée not.

Mor The hurte done by our friendes doth more gréeue vs, than that whiche our enimies doe.

231 Of a sheep crying.

A Shéep being caught by a Dogge which was keeper of the flocke, made a great crying, but being taken by the Wolfe, did not crie at all: who being demaunded of the shepherd, why she did so? aunswered: It greeueth me more to be hurt of the dog, which should be my kéeper and friend, than of the Wolfe, who naturally is my foe.

Mor. The hurt by them of the houshold done, more hurteth than that whiche is done by straungers.

232 Of a Rauen and a serpent.

A Rauen lacking meate, sée a Serpente sléeping on a sunnie banke, at whome Hurtfull gaine. he slewe downe and caught him vp: who turned again and byt him: the Rauē ther­with [Page 161] nighe dead sayde: Ah wretch that I am, which haue found such a gaine wherof I perishe.

Mor. This fable is against him, which by finding a treasure, hath put him selfe in daunger of his life.

233 Of a poore Man.

A Certeyn poore Man had nothing but a Hurtful things. house vnderset with shores, whiche was like to fall. It happened on a tyme as he returned from the fieldes, he found it fallen, and bicause he had not wherewith to set it vp agayne, he was so muche trou­bled in his minde, that he fell to mourning and wéeping out of measure. But as this poore man thus made his moane, he espied a brasen pot, whiche many yeares had ben hidden in the Wall, lying amongest the stones and rubbishe, which when he hadde taken vp and opened, he founde it full of golde, wherwith his hart hopping for ioy, he left off his wéeping.

Mor. Sometime that we thinke hurt­full, turneth to oure great profite and commoditie.

234 Of a learned man not esteemed.

A Certeyn learned man being bidden to [...]esting. the feasie of a Prince, and commaun­ded to sit down in the neathermost roomes, when the other guestes had great fishes set before thē, but to him very small ones, he did eate none, but put them firste one af­ter an other to his mouth, thē to his eares, as though he would demaunde some thing of them, & after layde them downe whole & vntouched in the dishes again: whome the maister of the feast asked why he did so? he aunswered, two yéere agoe in these parties my father through shipwracke was cast a­way, and what became of his body I could not afterwards knowe, I did therefore de­maunde of these litle fishes if they could tel any tydings of him, but they aunswered, yt at that time they were not bredde: where­fore I must aske the greater Fishes. The Prince hearing so merry a saying, com­maunded of the greater fishes to be set be­fore him, and euer after he placed him a­mongst his chiefest guestes.

Mor. Amongst vnlearned mē, learning is not so profitable to the learned as is pleasaunt and mery talke.

235 Of a Phisitian.

A Nolde Woman being troubled with Ignorāce. payn of hir eyes, bargained with a Phi­sitian for a certen summe of money to pay him if he healed hir: if not, he should haue nothing. The Phisitian went about his cure, who dayly came and anoynted bir eyes, but she (that houre he dressed hir) cold sée nothing: then hée at his departure, ca­ried some thing out of the house. The olde woman sée hir stuff dayly decrease, so that whē she was healed, scarse any thing was left, to whom when the Phisitian came & required his bargain, bicause she could sée clearely, and thereof brought witnesses, she sayd: Truely I rather sée lesse than before, for whē I was blind I could sée much stuff in my house, but now that I can sée, as thou sayst, I perceyue nothing of yt which I had.

Mor. Wicked persons not knowing what they doe, speake often against them selues.

236 Of Dogs.

A Certen man had two Dogs, whereof ye one he taught to hunt, the other to kéep his house, if it chaunced the hounde to catch any thing, he whiche kept him was parta­any [Page 164] thing, he whiche being offended, cast oft in his fellowes téeth that he dayly tooke payres, and the other did nothing, and yet he was fed with his trauaill: his fellowe aunswered and sayde: Blame not me but my Maister, whiche neuer taught me to labor, but to eate that an other hath swet for.

Mor. Yong men which know nothing, are not to be blamed, seeing their Pa­rents brought them vp so.

237 Of a Sheep wasting Corne.

A Husbandman complayned that ye shéep destroyed all his Corne, wherevppon Immode­atenesse. Iupiter commaunded the shéep to féed tem­perately, and bicause they obeyed not his will, the Wolfe was appointed to afflicte them moderately. But when the shepherd complayned that all his flocke was killed by the Wolfe, Iupiter was offended, and bad the Hunter kil the Wolf, which thing he quickly did.

Mor. No immoderate thing is conti­nuall.

238 Of the Owle and the Larke.

THe Larke came to the Owle and sayd: Impossible promises. Deare sister, I pray thée beare me com­panie to morowe at noone, for my louer desireth to see me by Sunne light: Nowe if I be matched with thée, I shall séeme more beautifull. The Owle promised to be there, for he was ashamed to sticke with hir for so small a trifle. When day was vp and the Sunne did shyne very cleare, the Larke wayted for him, but the Owle durst not appeare by Sun light, bicause she could not see, and therfore came not, wherwith ye Lark being offended, alwayes after abhor­red and pursued hir: wherefore the Owle flieth not by daye for feare of the Lark, but seeketh his meate by night.

Mor. None ought to promise that, which he can not performe.

139 Of the Reed.

THe Réed was displeased that not onely all other trées, but also sometime grasse Inconstācy did beare a nest, but he only of that honour was depriued: he therefore prayed a litle birde to build hir nest vpon him, so would I (quod she) but I mistrust thy inconstācy, [Page 166] for I wil not build my childrens house vp­on so ticklish a foundation.

Mor. We ought not to commit our selues or our children to inconstant persons.

240 Of the Eele.

THe Eele sayd to a Serpent, why do mē pursue me rather than thée, séeing we are so néere kin and so like? Mary (quod hée) If they hunte mée, they seldome scape scot frée.

Mor. They are least hurt, whiche vse to reuenge their iniuries

241 Of the Crowe and the Sheep.

A Crowe lighted on a shéeps back & made a great noyse, then sayde the shéepe: If [...]nnocēcie. thou shouldest do so to a dog, thou mightest chaunce catch copper. Yea (sayd the Crow) I know with whome I deale, for I am to the pacient gréeuous, and to the angry plesaunt.

Mor. The wicked striue cōtinually with the féeble and simple folke: the innocent is troden vnder foote, but no man gayn­sayeth the vngodly, if he be stout.

242 Of the Ape and the Foxe.

THe Ape prayed the Foxe to giue him a Inough hath none piece of his tayle to couer his buttockes withall, bicause that whiche to him was a burthen, would stande him in good stéede and do him much worship. The Foxe aun­swered and sayd, that she hadde nothing too much, and she had rather swéep the ground therewith, than it shoulde couer the Apes buttockes.

Mor. Some haue great scarcitie, and some haue great plentie, yet fewe riche men are so well bent as to helpe the poore with any thing of their excesse and superfluitie.

243 Of the Frogs and the Sunne.

THe Frogges reioysed at the mariage Ʋayne ioye. of the Sunne, to whome one sayde: O wretched kinde, if we only feare the sunne beames, who will abyde hym if he gette children?

Mor. This Fable is agaynst those, which ignorauntly reioyce at their owne harme.

244 Of a Wolf fallen into a pit.

A Foxe espying a Wolfe fallen into a hole, did laugh, and reioycing skipped about the brinkes of the Pit, calling him foolish beaste, which would not beware of mens deceytes. As he thus wantonly scof­fed, the earth fayled, and caried him head­long in also: whome the Wolfe séeing to fall, sayd: I shall nowe cary a great com­fort of my death to hell, bicause I sée the Foxe, (whiche mocked me) perishe with mée.

Mor. We ought not reioyce at an o­thers miserie, seing we may fal into the same likewise.

245 Of two Hogs.

A Certeyn man had two Hogges which bare so mortall hatred one toward an­other, that dayly they tore eche other with their téeth: but when their Maister killed one of them, the other was wonderfull glad, séeing that his enimie should die in­continent: within fewe dayes after, when he him selfe was drawen to death, he tor­mēted him self, saying: Woe is me wretch, Why did I so reioyce ouer my enimies [Page 169] death, whome so soone I do followe too the same ende.

Mor. None ought too reioyce, no not o­uer the deathe of his enimie, séeyng it is euident that all must dye.

246 Of a Wolf that put on a Shepes skin.

A Wolfe put on a Shéepes skin, and was Iudging outwardly conuersant amongst the Shéepe, of whom he dayly deuoured one, which thing when the shepherd had espyed, he hanged him vp in an high trée, then other shepherds asked him why he hóong vp a Sheepe: Ah (quod he) the skin as ye sée is a shéepe, but in his déedes he was a Wolfe.

Mor. Men muste not be estéemed after their apparell, but after their woorkes, for many are vnder shéepes skinnes ra­uening Wolues.

247 Of the Elephant.

AS the Lyon passed by the wilde beasts through the desert, they made theyr o­beisance to him as King of beasts, only the Elephant bowed not his knée, bicause hée could not, but some beasts enuying him, re­ported yll of him to the Lion, hée sente for him foorthwith, and sayd: Why art thou so [Page 170] stubborne, that thou doest not thy dutie as the rest? My Lord, according to my power I honour thée, but I can not knéele bicause I lack knées. The Lion sayde, if thou doe it in thy harte, it suffiseth: wherefore he con­demned hys accusers, and promoted the Elephant.

Mor. We ought to gyue no iudge­ment, before the truthe be tried.

248 Of an Asse.

THe Asse in the winter season was much troubled for ye extréeme colde yt he suffe­red, Labor. & yt he liued only by strawe, whervpon he wished for the spring tide, that he might féede of the swéete grasse. When the spring was come, his Maister being a potter, com­pelled him to carry clay into his worke­house and wood to the furnace, and thence to cary bricke and tyle into diuers places: wherewith being anoyed, he longed for sommer, hoping thē to take his ease when his maister was busie in his haruest: but then he caried wheate into the barne, and from thence home, and had no rest: where­fore he thought if Autūne were once come to haue an ende of his trauaile: but he could not yet be eased of hys trauaile, but [Page 171] as then caried wine, fruit and wood: then he desired for frost & snow again, yt at the last he might haue some ease of his trauaile.

Mor. In this life there is no time voyde of continuall labour.

249 Of a Countryman and Bees.

A Certen Countryman kept an Hiue of Bées, by which he became rich: neuer­thelesse Learning. he was oftē stong when he fetched away the hony cōbes, wherewith being of­fended, he threatned the Bées saying: If hereafter ye touche me I will surely ouer­throwe you & driue you away. What (quod the Bées) thou canst be content to gather ye swéete, but arte loth to tast of the soure: be quiet, or we will forsake thée. It happened, when he came again to gather hony, a Bée stong him, wherewith being mad, he ouer­threw the hiues, thē the bées forsooke him, wherby ye couetous churle fel into pouerty.

Mor. Who so will haue gayne, must endure some payne.

250 Of a Husbandman and a Poet.

A Certen Husbandman came to a Poet, whose groundes he tilled, whome by­cause he found alone sitting amongst his books, asked him by what meanes he could [Page 172] liue so solitarie? Mary (quod he) I was not alone afore thou camest here.

Mor. Learned men which dayly are in company of such as they are, be neuer a­lone, but when they are amongest the vnlearned.

251 Of a Rich man vnlearned, and a Poore man learned.

A Certein man being rich but vnlerned, mocked a learned mā which was poore, bicause that he hymself with his owne tra­uaile hadde gathered muche goodes, but he which was so learned was in great penu­rie: No maruaile (quod hée) bycause thou haste studied to gather Riches, but I haue endeuored to get lerning, which doth farre excell riches. Hereupon there fel a conten­tion betwéene the riche man and the lear­ned, whither lerning or riches were more excellent, which coulde not be ended seyng both had many fauorers, but the rich man had most: At length by this meanes it was knowne that learning excelled riches, tho­rough ciuile discord being bothe compelled to liue in banishment, when they could ca­ry nothing a waye with them of their sub­stance [Page 173] they went away into an other citie, where the learned man was hyred to teach for a great stipende, and had in honour and estimation: but he which was rich, through pouertie being fayne to beg his bread from doore to doore, confessed that in his opinion he had erred.

Mor. The gifts of Fortune, bycause they passe too and fro, are farre subiect to the gifts of the mynde, whiche are pro­per and euerlasting.

252 Of a Parat.

A Parat dwelling in a kings court was asked of other birds, why shée was so highly estemed? Who aunswered, bycause I haue learned to speake as a man.

Mor. Wée must learne good and libe­rall sciences if we wil be had in honour and estimation.

253 Of the Pike and the Tenche.

AS a certein Fisher angled, he so bayted Learne by others. his hooks that the Fishes could not per­ceiue them, whiche the Pyke & the Tenche séeing, were very desyrous of it: but the Pyke being subtil sayd to the Tench: This [Page 174] This Bayte séemeth to be good and deli­cate, yet I think it is layd to deceyue fishes withall, therfore let vs forsake it least we perishe through the lustes of gluttonie. In fayth (quod the Tenche) it were a folly to leaue so good a morsel for feare of nothing: I will first trie it and make mery with it, and looke thou what will hap. As he swal­lowed the Bayte, he felt the deceyte of the hooke and wold fayne haue retired, but the Fisher first plucked him vp, then the Pyke swam away and sayd: Lette vs learne by our fellowes mischance, least we perishe.

Mor. Happy is hée, whom other mens harmes do make to beware.

254 Of a Mermayd and a Lechour.

A Certen shamelesse and lecherous per­son sayling on ye sea, espied a most beau­tifull Mermayde, after whome he lusted so much, that he prouoked hir to lecherie, but she did sing much swéeter and prepared hir selfe to beguyle thys Marchaunt, saying: as I perceyue thou louest mée, but if thou wilt haue thy pleasure of me, come into the water, and it shall be at thy commaun­dement. This fellow was so enflamed wt [Page 175] lust, that he cleane forgot his owne estate, and therefore skipped into the Sea to hir: She séeing that, left him in great daunger and swam away.

Mor. This Fable willeth vncleane men to beware that they likewise pe­rish not through the beautie of a womā.

255 Of a Ielous man.

A Certeyn Ielous man maried a Wife, Leude­nesse of women. whom he knew vnhonest, wherevpon he deliuered hir to a trusty friend of his to keepe, promising him a great reward, if he kept hir so safely, that by no meanes the bonde of wedlocke were broken. When he had tried hir a fewe dayes and percey­ued that she might hardly be kept safe, by­cause through hir subtiltie he was night ouercome, went to hir husbande and told him that he would not take so great charge vpon him, séeing that Argus himselfe, with an hūdred eyes, were not able to kéepe hir by cōstraint: he sayd moreouer, if he might be put to choyse, he had rather by the space of one whole yeare, dayly carry into the fieldes a sackefull of fleas, and turne them all to grasse, and bring them home agayne [Page 176] at euening, thā one day too haue the charge of a leude woman.

Mor. No kéeper be he neuer so diligent can kéepe safely a wanton mynion.

256 Of a Liberall man.

A Frank and Liberall man toward all Libera­litie. mē, trauailing far, fel amōgst théeues, who standing about him, and ready to slay him, one of them cried out: kill not this man which hath much holpen me, for som­time he did not only receiue me gētly into his house, but also norished me being sick, and caused a phisitian too looke vnto me, with which woords his felowes relenting, suffted him to depart vnhurt..

Mor. As far as we may, we shoulde do good to all men.

257 Of a Couetous man.

A Very harde head bought a riche farme and plentifull, whiche was set withal kinde of Trées that bare fruite, which yel­ded to the former lord greate abundance of frute, although it were vnfensed and com­mon for all trauailers: the new lord suppo­sing that if it were dressed better and loo­ked [Page 177] too, it would beare fruite more aboun­dantly, tooke great paynes about it, and in­closed it with thicke hedges and walles, & appointed kéepers to watch it, but it being so diligently tended, yelded litle encrease. Then God being asked wherof this came, aunswered thus: Thou art the cause of so great euill, bicause thou kéepest on euery side the fields fenced with hedges & strong walles: sometime I gaue great encrease bicause many required much, but now sée­ing it serueth thee alone, why doest thou aske so much?

Mor. God gyueth plenty to a liberall man, bycause he might supplie the ne­cessitie of many.

258 Of the Dog and the Lyon.

A Dog by chaunce met with a Lyon, to Libertie. whom he sayd meryly, what wandrest thou (O miser) through woods and deserts nighe pined for hunger? Marke how fatte and trim I am: I neuer take payns for it, but get it ydelly Truthe it is (sayd ye Lyō) that thou farest well, yet thou (O foole) art in bondage, serue thou which canst serue, for I am frée and will not serue.

[Page 178] Mor. In euery thing liberty farre ex­celleth.

259 Of the Lynnet and the Boy.

A Bey asked a Linnet in whome he had a singular delight, and had fedde hym fat with good meate, why he would not re­turne into the cage whence he went out? Bycause (quod hee) I might féede at my owne pleasure, not at thine.

Mor. Libertie is to be prefered aboue all dainties.

260 Of a Foxe and a Crocodile.

THe Foxe and the Crocodile dyd stryue about their Nobilitie: The Crocodile [...]. layd for him selfe many proud things con­cerning the worthinesse of his auncesters, that they had prices in games. Whereat the Foxe laughed, saying: Trulye friend, though thou neuer namedst that, yet it ap­peareth by thy skin, that thou haste bin a great dooer in old time.

Mor. The thing it selfe reproueth ly­ers of their falshood.

261 Of the Shepherd and the Hus­band men.

A Boy kept shéep in a great pasture, who three or foure tymes dyd crye in ieste that the Wolfe was come: whiche thing caused the Husbande men (oute of euery Quarter of the Countreys) to assemble there. It chaunced verely, that the Wolfe came at length, and the Boy called for help as before, but they being oft deluded, wold not once stirre out of their doores, whereby the sheepe were all destroyed.

Mor. He that vseth lying, though he chaunce once to tell a truthe, shall not soone be credited.

262 Of Mercurius.

IVpiter commaunded Mercurius to be­stow amongst craftes men the medicine to make them lye, which when he had well stamped and measured, he poured it equal­ly vpon euery one. The shoomaker only re­mayned, on whom (bycause muche of the medicine was left) he poured all in the morter: whereof it came to passe, that all craftes men are lyers, but moste of all are shoomakers.

[Page 180] Mor. This Fable is against lying workmen.

263 Of an old Man and his Sonne.

A Certeyn olde Man being thrust out of [...] doores by his Sonne, liued in an Hospi­tall. On a time he espied his sonne trauay­ling that way, whom he prayed, that at the least he would sende him two towels of all his linnen, for which he had swet full sore: who being at length moued with his Fa­thers prayers, commaunded a litle Boye his sonne, to fetche his Grandfather ye lin­nen that he required. The Boy being wit­ty and worthy of such a father, brought but one, whom his Father rebuked bycause he brought not two as he was bidden: forsoth (quod hée) I kéepe the other for thée, yt when thou arte old and liuest in an Hospitall, I might sende it to thée.

Mor. Looke what loue we beare to­ward our Parentes, the same will our children beare toward vs.

264 Of the Falcon and the Cock.

A Certen Knight had a Falcon, of whom Liue in [...]hy voca­tion. he much reioyced, whome he alwayes [Page 181] caried on his fiste, and fed him well, but on a tyme he lette hys Falcon flie, bycause he would cal hir to his hand, and whistled for hir, but the Falcon would not came down. A Cock séeing this, exalted him selfe, say­ing: What doe I poore wretch alwayes li­uing in durte and myre, am I not as fayre and as great as the Falcon? Sure I will light on hys gloue and be fedde with my Lords meate. When he had lighted on hys fiste, the Knight (though he were sory) yet somwhat reioyced & tooke the Cock, whom he killed, but hys fleshe he shewed to the Falcon, to bring him againe to his hand, which the Falcon séeing, came hastily too it.

Mor. Let euery man walke in his vo­cation, and let no man exalte him selfe aboue his degrée.

265 Of the Camell.

A Camell being weary of his estate, cō ­playned that the Buls had goodly hor­nes, but he him selfe had no defence to re­siste other beastes: He therefore besought Iupiter to gyue hym hornes also: Who laughed at his foolish request, whereof not [Page 182] only he was denied, but also had his eares cropped.

Mor. Lette euery man be content with his calling, for as some hunte after bet­ter fortune, they happen to worse.

266 Of the Asse, the Ape, and the Mole.

THe Asse complayned that he lacked hor­nes, and the Ape that he wāted a tayle. Peace fooles (quod the Mole) for I am blind also.

Mor. Some are not content with their estate, but if they wayed well other mens misfortunes, they woulde quiet­lier endure their owne.

267 Of the Snayle and Frogs.

A Snayle espied many Frogs féeding in one poole togither, so light and nimble, that they would easely leape euery where, then he accused nature for creating him so slowe a beast, and for carying so great a burthen, that scarce he could stirre withal: But when he perceyued the Frogges to be deuoured of Snakes, and to be in daunger of euery trifle, he cōforted him selfe saying: Oh how much better is it to cary a burthē, [Page 183] which may be a safegarde agaynst al wea­thers, than to be so oft in daūger of death?

Mor. We must not be gréeued with the gifts of nature, which are sometime more for our profite, than we can vn­derstand.

268 Of a rich man.

A Riche man had two daughters, wher­of Loue of money. the one died, at whose buriall he hy­red women to lament: the other sayde: What wretches are wée, for to vs this mourning belongeth, but we can not skill thereof, and they which haue nothing to doo there with, how pitifully doe they wayle? To whom hir mother sayde: Maruell not daughter, if they lament so, for they doe it bicause of money.

Mor. Some men for loue of money feare not to picke aduauntage from an others miserie.

269 Of the Nightingale and the Hauke.

A Nightingale sitting vppon a trée, dyd Lucre. sing as he was wonte, but the Hauke séeing him and lacking meate, flew at the Nightingale, whiche being ready to be killed, besought the Hauke not to de­uoure [Page 184] him, bicause she coulde not suffise to fill his belly, but he ought, lacking meate, to fall to greater birds. Nay (quod he) then were I mad, if I shoulde let goe that I am sure of, and pursue that I sée not.

Mor. Some men are so foolish, that vp­on hope of greater things which are vn­certaine, put away that they haue pre­sently.

270 Of a mad Man.

A Certein mad Man wandring through Cities, cryed aloud that he had wisdom Madnesse. to sell, then one offered money and requi­red it, to whome he lent a blowe and gaue him a long thréed, saying: Thou shalt be wise if thou kéepe thée as farre from mad men, as this is long.

Mor. We must haue nothing to do with mad men.

271 Of a Priest and his Boy.

A Priest gyuen to belly good chéere, deli­uered Mad­seruaunts. to his Boy ten fat thrushes put vpon a Spit to be rosted, saying that he shoulde eate them all at a byt, if he lette them fall into the ashes. Within a short [Page 185] while after, when he returned (for he was gone out to doo certein businesse) he founde the boy crying, who being demaunded why he wept, aunswered, bicause he could eate but nine when they fell into the ashes, re­questing that he might not be forced to eat the tenth bycause he was full swolne more than inough. The priest being offended, as well with the madnesse of the boye, as by­cause he saw that he had lost his supper, led the boy without the thresholde of the doore, and shewed him thrée ways, saying: Choose which of these thou wilt, for here thou shalt not lodge this night.

Mor. Wee ought not too kéepe madde seruants in oure house.

272 Of a Foxe.

AS a Fore passed ouer a Riuer, hée was Magi­strates. driuen into a ditche, where he stucke so fast in the mudde that he coulde not escape, whom the flies sore stinged. The Hedge­hog séeing him there, tooke compassion on him, and asked him whether he shold driue the flyes from him: No (quod he) these are full with my bloud, and can little trouble me, but if thou shouldest driue them away, [Page 186] other hūger sterued flies will occupie their roomes, and sucke out all the bloud that is left within me.

Mor. Olde Magistrates must remayne in their office,

273 Of an Asse.

AN Asse bare great malice to a Hogge which dwelt with his maister, bicause he did nothing, & yet was fed with diuers kindes of meates and became dayly fatter, but he him selfe continually drudging dyd fare hardly, whereby he was so leane, that he could scarse goe. But at length when he sawe his fellow caried to the Butchers to be killed for mans meate, he somewhat re­uiued and sayd: Ah, this is the end that mē take such paynes in féeding a Hog. O how far better is it to be an Asse, than a Hog?

Mor. We ought not to enuie those, whom we thinke happy, whereas that cloked felicitie, to many is cause of mi­serie.

274 Of a yong man.

A Certein yong man whiche should ma­rie Mariage. a Wife, being demaunded whyther [Page 187] he would haue hir, turned him to his friēds and neyghboures present, saying: Why stand ye lyke dumbe men, why doe ye not praye God to helpe mée this day? for if we praye God helpe them that nyse where no daunger is, how much more ought ye now to praye for mée, to whome so great daun­ger is at hand?

Mor. They whiche marie, enter into great daunger.

275 Of Iupiter.

IVpiter celebrating a mariage, receyued Meane life. all beasts vnto the feaste, only ye Snayle made slow hast, the cause whereof he mar­uelling at, asked him why he came not to the feast? he answered: My house is deare to mee and excellent: whereat Iupiter bée­ing angry, gaue sentence that he shoulde cary his house about him.

Mor. Some men had rather liue hard­ly at home, than daintily abroade.

276 Of a Foxe and a Weasel.

THe Foxe had so long tyme fasted with­out getting any maner of praye, that he [Page 188] looked very leane and thin, and by chaunce crept through a narrow hole, into a vault of corne, where when hee had well fed, hée assayed to go foorth ageine, but his belly be­ing ful let him: the Wesill séeing him a far off struggling to get out, coūselled him if he would get out, to come as fresh and fasting as he went in. This fable reherseth Ho­race thus:

Sometyme did passe a narrow hole,
a hungrie Foxe and thin,
To come vnto a vaulte of wheate
where easly he got in:
And being full, coulde not repasse,
to whome a Weasill spake,
Come fastyng foorth as in thou wentst,
this way needes must thou take.

277 Of an Apple tree.

AN Apple trée mocked ye Oliue trée that he bare small beries, seing she brought foorth so great Aples, that hir boughs could hardly bear thē: sodainly ther arose a wind, and all the Apples almost, bycause of their weyghte and vyolence of the tempest fell downe, and hir boughes were broken, but the Oliue trée stoode whole: then sayd shée [Page 189] to hir self, how far better had it bin for mée to haue borne lesser frute?

Mor. Wée oughte to be contente with small things, seyng abundance of riches can not bée enioyed without great dan­ger.

278 Of the Flye and the Ant.

THe Flie striued with the Ant about his nobility, the Fly alleaged that she was of a noble bloud, and that she flyed, dwelts in Kings pallaces, fared deyntily, there vn­to idelly atchieuing, and the Ant to be base born, to créepe on the earth, to liue in holes to gnaw on corne, and to drink water. The Ant replied that she was no base born, yet contented with hir birthe, the Flie to be a vagabund, hir selfe none, she tasted of corne and running water, the Fly of bakemeats and swéete wine, and she got not hir liuing ydelly, but with trauaile: furthermore the Ant to be always merry in safetie, beloued of all men, beside that an example of labor, the Flie to be in danger, hatred, and spited of all men, yea & a figure of slouthfulnesse: the Ant to be mindefull of Winter, and to lay vp this prouision, the Fly to liue from day to day, and in the winter to be hungry, [Page 190] or else die for hunger.

Mor. A meane life, quietly out of check­ing, is better thā a delicate life in much trouble.

279 Of a Husbandman and his Dogs.

A Husbandman wintered in the Coun­trey a good many dayes: at length he Maisters. began to want his necessary things. Firste he began to kill his shéepe, after his gotes, last of all his Oxen, to kéepe life and soule togither, bicause he was nighe pyned with hunger. The Dogs séeing that, determined to saue their lyues by running away, for they supposed in that he spared not his oxē, whiche for husbandry he occupied, that he would serue them with the like sause.

Mor. Take héede in what house thou serue for hyre, some maisters are moste vncurteous, whiche in their rage care not what mischief or displeasure they doo to their seruaunts.

280 Of the Lampurne and the Crocodile.

THe Lampurne on a tyme finding the Meading with strā ­gers. broude of a Crocodile, killed them all, & departed. When the Crocodile returned & [Page 191] found hir yong ones dead, she was out of measure sory, and desired by all meanes possible to reuenge their death, wherevp­on she went armed to deuoure the Lam­purn, but on a tyme shée found a cruell ser­pent and venomous, and she supposed it to be the Lampurn, whō she assayled, saying: Ah wretche, nowe canst thou not escape, thou hast without cause slayn my sonnes, therfore now I wil dispatch thée: the snake aunswered, take héede of me, for I am no Lāpurne but a venomous Viper. Ah (quod the Crocodile) thou canst not deceyue mée, for thou art no Snake but a Lampurn, and altogither like to one, and therefore I will kill thée, but as she went to slaye him, the serpent prepared him selfe, byt hir, and al­so poysoned hir.

Mor. No man ought to fight with him whom he knoweth not.

281 Of a Lyon and a Mouse.

IT happened that a Lyon (wearied with Mercy in Princes. running and heate of the weather) layde him downe to rest in the shadowe vnder the gréene trées, who being sodenly wa­ked with a flocke of Mise that ran ouer his [Page 192] backe, caught one amongst the rest. Thys poore prisoner besoughte him earnestly to set hym at libertie, saying that he was al­togither vnworthy to stirre him to anger. The Lyon considering it wold be no com­mendation for him to slay so small a beast, let him go frée. Not long after it chaunced as the Lyon ran through the thick wood, he fell into a net, well might he roare, but es­cape he coulde not: This Mouse hearyng the Lyon so lamentably roaryng, streighte way knewe his voyce, and crepte in at the holes of the earth, and diligently sought for the knots of the snare: which hauing foūd, he gnew in pieces, by whiche meanes the Lyon escaped out of the net.

Mor. Mighty men must vse mercy, for Fortune changing as the wynde, euen the stoutest at a tyme may néede helpe of ye basest: therfore a wise mā though it lay in his power to hurt any mā, ought to feare that, he that feareth not that, do­teth greatly: and why so? Though it be so, yt bering thée bold of thine office thou carest for no mā, the day may come that thou maist be aferd. It is not vnknown what hath hapned to noble and mightie [Page 193] Princes, who haue not only bin glad to séeke ayde of most vile persons, but also haue feared their displeasure.

282 Of the Wolfe and the Lambe.

AS a Wolfe was drinking at the head Might. of a spring, he espied a Lambe farre be­neath also drinking of the same Spring, wherat grudging, ran hastily to the Lābe and roughly rebuked him for troubling the spring. The Lambe al trembling besought him to she we cōpassion on him, being ther­of giltlesse, alleaging that bycause he drank farre beneath him by no meanes he coulde trouble hys drinking, neyther yet ment it. The Wolfe hauing determined euen at the firste sight, the death of ye Lābe, threatned hym moste rigorously, saying: Thy labor is in vayne to aske pardon, for thou art alwayes my enimie, thy Father, thy mother, and all thy cursed kinred are willingly my foes: but this daye I will be reuenged of thée.

Mor. The mighty if he be disposed to hurt, easely findeth occasion thereto. A small thing is a great faulte, if a man deale with his Superiours.

283 Of the Hares and the Frogs.

THe Hares sometime assembled and be­wayled Miserie of others easeth some. their life as full of daunger and feare, that they were deuoured by men, dogs, and Eagles, and many other: wher­vpon they decréed that it was better once to die, than all their life to be in feare: then they rushed to the marsheward, as thoughe they would fall therein and be choked: but Frogs whiche sat on the banks, hearing a noyse of running, skipped into it. Whiche thing one of the Hares wyser than the rest séeing, sayd: stay fellowes & do your selues no harme, for there are other beastes more fearfull than wée.

Mor. Wretched men are comforted by the miserie of others being greater.

284 Of a Swanne.

A Rich man brought vp a Swanne and a Goose togither, but not both to one Musick. purpose, for the one shold serue to sing, the other for the table. When the tyme was come that the goose shold doe that for which he was kept vp, it chaunced to be night, so that one coulde not be knowen from the o­ther, and the Swan was caried, away instead [Page 195] of the goose, who soong a song at ye be­ginning of hir death, by whiche she shewed hir nature, & by hir sweete singing escaped death.

Mor. Cōmonly Musicke prolongeth life.

285 Of a Moore.

A Certen mā bought a Moore, who thin­king that the blacknesse of his skinne Nature. hapned through the negligence of his first Maister, tooke him home and ceassed not cōtinually to washe him with suche things as would make him white, by which mea­nes he so vexed the poore slaue, that he brought him into a sicknesse, his skin re­mayning still as black as before.

Mor. Nature will abyde as it was first.

286 Of a Horseman and a Husbandman.

A Horseman required a Husbandmā to Necessity catch a Hare, whiche he tooke in hys handes and asked the price, and foorthwith set spurs to his horsse: but the Husbandmā sayd: Make no haste, for I will giue it thée for a present.

Mor. This Fable toucheth those which refuse their own vpon necessitie.

287 Of a Man and his Dog.

A Certen man hauing forgot to shut the doore where the Hens roosted: When Negli­gence of seruaunts. he arose in the morning, founde that they were all killed and caried away by ye Fox: He was wroth therefore with the Dog, bicause he had not well tended hys goods, & bet him sore. Why, (quod he) if thou hast bin negligēt in shutting the doore, for whō the Hens layd egs, and hatched Chickens, is it any maruell if I being in a dead sléepe and haue no profit by thē, did not perceyue the Foxe comming?

Mor. We must neuer hope to haue di­ligent seruaunts, where the maister is negligent.

288 Of a Foxe.

A Fox durst not assaulte by night a flock of Hens for feare of a Dogge which he knew to lodge amongst them: but when Neighbor he vnderstood that they were gone to an o­ther place to companie with other Hens where no dog was, supposing to obtayn his purpose went thither and killed them all.

Mor. It is better to haue a good and couragious neighboure dwelling néere, [Page 197] than cowardly kinsmen.

289 Of foure footed Beastes.

WHen war was proclaimed betwene No ayde, no fellows. foure footed beastes, and foules: The Beastes made a league with the Fishes, that by their ayde they might be defended from the rigorousnesse of the Foules. Whē they looked for helpe at their hands, the Fi­shes sent their Ambassadoures to declare that they could not come by lande vnto thē.

Mor. Make not those thy fellowes, which can not helpe in tyme of néede.

290 Of a Souldiour and his Horse.

THere was a Souldiour whiche hadde a Newe things best. passing fine horse, and bought an other in goodnesse nothing like vnto him, whom more nicely he kept than the firste: Then sayd he to his fellow, why doth my Maister keepe me passingly aboue thée, séeing I am not to be compared to thée, neyther in cōli­nesse, strength, nor swiftnesse? He answe­red him: This is the course of the worlde, that new guestes are best welcome.

Mor. Suche is the madnesse of men, that they preferre newe things afore [Page 198] old, though they be worser.

291 Of the Kid and the Wolfe.

A Gote going abroade to feed, shut vp hir yong Kid at home, charging him not to Obedience. open the doore till hir returne: The Wolf by chaunce hearing that, after hir depar­ture knocked at ye doore, fayning the voyce of the Gote, and bad him open it. The Kid perceyuing his pretence, denied to open the doore, saying: Though thy voyce be like a Gotes, yet I see a Wolfe throughe the chinkes.

Mor. It is good for childrē to obey their Parents, yong men to be ruled by age.

292 Of a Chicken caught by a Kight.

A Hen hauing many chickens did great­ly feare least the Kight should catch thē, wherevpon when she sawe the Kight, she gathered them often vnder hir wings to saue them from their enimie. But one day espying the kight flying toward hir, she called hir chickens togither, which al came quickly at their dāmes clocking, onely one excepted, which despising hir calling, why­les she coueted to eate a corne of wheat, was snatched vp in the clawes of the cruel Kight into the Aire.

[Page 199] Mor. They whiche obey not their Pa­rents cōmaundement, fall into miserie.

293 Of a Philosopher.

A Philosopher of the secte of Cynicus in Offences vnpuni­shed. chyding being stricken, was not onely ther with cōtented, but also rewarded him that strake, with a piece of siluer: Whiche thing whē all that were present maruelled at, & sayd that he was worthy to be beaten ageyn, ah (quod hée) ye knowe not what I haue done now, but herafter ye shal know: not long after as that stryker would haue beaten an other (for he hoped to gayn som­what) he receyued his deaths wounde, and féeling death to come vppon him, he sayd: how much better had it bin for me to haue bin striken again of the Philosopher, than to be rewarded with a siluer peny?

Mor. When offenders scape scot frée, it doth thē somtime more hurte thā punish­ment.

294 Of the Foxe and the Egle.

ON a tim a yong Fox wandring frō hir Oppression of poore. hole, was snatched vp by an Eagle, thē he cried for his Dāme to haue ayde of hir: She hearing hir yong one crie out, came hastily running and besought the Eagle to [Page 200] set him at libertie: The Eagle hauing got that praie, would not departe withall, but caried it vp to hir nest. The Foxe desirous to be reuenged, caught vp a firebrand, fol­lowing after him to sette fire on his nest: when she had climbed vp into the trée, she sayd to him: Saue thée and thy chickens if thou cāst. The Egle fearing to be burnt, prayed hir to take pitie of him and his litle ones, and what soeuer he hadde of his, he would restore.

Mor. By the Eagle is vnderstoode the mighty and men of stout courage. By y Foxe the poore, whom the riche are ear­nestly bēt with forged crimes to charge and slaunder: yet the Antes, when their anger taketh effecte, though they be a weake people, sometyme their iniurie wreakes very well.

295 Of an Oliue Tree.

AN Oliue trée maruelled yt a wild Vine Ouer ha­ [...]inesse. which grew néere vnto him, had shooted vp so high in so short time, that he was far higher than hée which had continued many péeres in one place: but winter cōming on, the wild vine withered away. Then the Oliue sayde: We ought not enuie those [Page 201] things that shoote vp apace, whose ende is so soone at hand.

Mor. Things soon ripe, are soone rotten.

296 Of the Mouse and the Cat.

A Flocke of Myse had their abiding in a hollow wall, wherèout by chaunce pée­ping, they espied a Catte, whiche satte in a chaumber lookyng grimly, and hangyng downe hir head. Then sayde one of them: This beaste seemeth very gentle and sim­ple, for hir countenaunce pretendeth holy­nesse, I will therfore go speake with hir, & contract a perfect league of friendship with hir that shal neuer be broken. Whē he had so sayd, he came nerer vnto hir, whom the Catte caught and tore in pieces: the other séeing that, sayd: Verily, verily, wee must not credit smooth lookes.

Mor. Wée must not iudge any man by his countenaunce, but by his good woor­kes: for in a shéepes skin oft are wrap­ped rauening wolues.

297 Of the Kyte and the Hauke.

THe Kyght contended wyth the Hauke before the Egle aboute his excellencie, Outward iudgemēt. alledging that for the greatnesse of his bo­die hée ought to be preferred. The Hauke [Page 220] ageyne sayde, that the stature ought not to be considered, but the strength. Then the Egle sayd, Goe ye on hunting, & whyther of you shall bring me the worthier praie, I will iudge him chiefest: but when the kight had brought a litle mouse, the Hauk a pigeon, the Eagle sayd: How much big­ger the doue is than the mouse, so muche I declare thée Hauke to excell the Kight.

Mor. Men must be iudged by their va­liaunt actes, not their huge stature.

298 Of Cocks and a Partriche.

A Certen man hauing Cocks at home, bought a Partriche, whom he put with Pacience. them to feed, but she being beaten & driuen from their company was very sory, suppo­sing that for being a stranger she was thus handled: but seing them shortly after fight one with an other, she left off sorrowe and sayd: Hereafter, if I see them fighting, I will not be gréeued.

Mor. Wise men paciently suffer wrōg of straungers, perceyuing that they ab­stayne not from their natiue Country­men.

299 Of the Sowe and the Dog.

A Sowe mocked a Spaniell, bycause he Pacience for gayne. vsed to faune on his maister, whiche so oft had beaten him, and plucked him by the eares, to teache him to hunte. Thou madde body (quod the Dogge) thou knowest not what I haue gayned by these stripes, for hereby doe I eate the swéete Partriches & Quayles.

Mor. We must not be gréeued if our Maister beate vs, for thereof issueth plentyfull goodnesse.

300 Of a Lambe and a Wolfe.

A Lamb standing in an highe place, ray­led Pacience perforce. on the Wolfe as he passed by be­neath, calling him naughty beast and ra­uening: to whom the Wolfturning sayd: Thou doest not taunte me, but the toure whereon thou standest.

Mor Some suffer wrong of vile per­sons, for feare of greater men.

301 Of a Flie.

A Flye by chaunce fell into a fleshe pot, wherein being nighe choked, sayd [Page 204] to himselfe, beholde I haue eats and dronk so much, and so wel washed me, that now being so full I am content to dye.

Mor. A wise man will stoutely beare out that which by no meanes can bée a­uoyded.

302 Of a Wolfe and the Lyon.

THe Wolfe and the Lyon being entred frendship together, did seek their liuing: when the Wolfe heard the baying of shéep, hée sayde: Truste to it friende, wée shall haue meate anone: When he therfore by folowing the noyse of Shéepe, was come to the penne, he founde it well fensed, and the Dogs néere a sléepe: Then he returned to the Lyon, saying: It pleaseth me not that at this tyme wee eate of shéepe, for they are very leane, let them growe fatte, and wée will returne when they be fat.

Mor. The Fable noteth those, which being lette of their purpose, doo alleage that they would not.

303 Of the Ape and his two sonnes.

THe report is, that if the Ape chaunce to haue a twinne, shée loueth the one, and [...]arentes. [Page 205] hateth the other: It came to passe, that she had two at a clap, who by chaunce béeing put in feare, bicause she would escape the present daunger, carried that she loued in hir armes, which as she ran headlong, she dashed ageynst a rock, and slue it, the other whiche she hated, sat on hir rough backe, and went scot frée.

Mor. It chaunceth commonly that pa­rents bring that chyld to naught whom they make wanton, & whome lesse they cocker, to proue a valiant & good man.

304 Of an old man which caried an Asse.

IT was talked sometyme amongest the Please e­uery body. Popes Secretaries, that those men whiche framed their lyfe after the opinion of the common people, were in a mysera­ble bondage, bycause it was impossible to please euery one, seing they are of sundry iudgements. To whiche opinion one told, that there was an olde man whiche went to market, with his sonne to sell an Asse, whiche he draue vnladen before him. As he passed on his way, there were men labou­ring by in the fields, which blamed the old man, bycause that neither he nor his sonne [Page 206] did ryde on the Asse whiche went empty, séeing the one for his age, the other for hys infancie had néede to be caried. Then the old man set his sonne on the Asse and him self went by on foote, which thing other sée­ing, sayd that he doted for letting his sonne ryde whiche was stronger, and hée being old woulde followe on foote: forth with he chaunged his minde and set off his sonne & ryd him selfe. When he had ridden a litle further, other met him, who blamed him, yt he hád no regard to the age of his litle son, but would let him follow him as a drudge, and him selfe being his Father did ride on the Asse: where with he being moued, sette his sonne also on the Asse. Not long after he was asked by other, whose ye Asse was: Mary (quod hée) it is myne: then they re­buked him that he had no pitie on his poore Asse, but to set two on him, seeing one was sufficient. Then the man being troubled with so sundry opinions, & seeing he coulde not be in quiet, but still was checked, he bound the foure Asses feete togither, and on a stast caried him on his owne shoulders & his sonnes to market: whereat all men wondring, laughed excéedingly, blaming [Page 207] both their follies, especially the Fathers. The old mā there with chafed, went to the riuers side and cast his Asse bounde into the water and so lost him and returned home: by which meanes the silly old man desirous to content euery body, coulde please none, but lost his Asse.

305 Of a sumptuous feast of the Lion.

THe Lion made a sumptuous banket to all other brute beasts, wherein Hens & Thrushes and such like birds were dressed, some rosted, some soddē. This feast pleased very well the dog & the Cat and other bea­stes that deuoure flesh, but the rest what­soeuer féede on grasse and barley, iudged this feast as vnsauerie.

Mor. It is harde to content the diuers opinions & fantasie of ye cōmon people.

306 Of the Plantin and the Ape.

PLantin is an hearbe profitable to heale a quartain, whereof an Ape hearing, which hadde a Sonne vexed with that dis­ease and coulde not be cured thoughe she had spent much vpō Phisitians, came vnto one Macer and sayd: I haue wandred far & [Page 208] nere, and can fynd no helpe for my sonne, but now I haue found thée whom I know to be a greate phisitian: therefore giue mée thy counsell, that I may get help for my son of the quarterne. Then Macer bycause he woulde bée iustified therin, sayd: Take foure roots of Plantine, and giue them the pacient and he shal soone be cured: the Ape hearing that, prepared the medicine which he ministred, and therwith healed him.

Mor. Let vs seeke out a lerned phisitiā if we woulde be restored to health.

307 Of the Firre Tree and the Bush.

THe report was somtime, that the Firre trée despysed the Bushes, and boasted Pleasure. of his owne tall stature, that he was pla­ced in houses, and too beare a sayle in the ships: but the Bushes to be low, vile and good for nothing: then they framed him this answer: thou beastest much (O Firre trée) of thy goodnesse, and skornest our euils, be­sides this thou concealest thy mischief, and passest ouer oure good fortune, but when thou shalt be cut downe with the axe, how gladly woldest thou be like vnto vs which are voyde of care?

[Page 209] Mor. Felicitie hath euils to accōpany hir, as misery hath good things. In sūme, this is safe and voyd of care, the other is neuer out of feare nor voyd of daunger.

308 Of the Sowe and the Bitch.

THe Sowe and the Bitch contended a­bout Perfectiō. their nobilitie: The Bitch allea­ged that of all foure footed beastes she was the fruitfullest. The Sowe quickly replied saying: Seeing thou sayst so, knowe thou, that thy whelpes be borne blinde?

Mor. Things are not iudged by quick spéede, but by full perfection.

309 Of the Dog and the Asse.

WHen the Dog fauned on his Lord or Perseue­raunce in his voca­tion. the seruaunte, they stroked him with their hands and made much of him: which thing the Asse marking well sighed déeply, being weary of his estate, yea & he thought it vniustly appointed that the Dog should so be beloued of all men, as to be fed at his maisters table, and therevnto to attayne with ease and playe: contrarywise, him­self to cary packs, to be whipped, to labour without ceassing, and yet neuerthelesse to be hated of all men: Seeing these things [Page 210] come to passe by fauning, he purposed to followe that trade of liuing being so pro­fitable: and watching a conuentent time, when his Lorde returned home, bicause he would put the thing in triall, he ran afore to méete him: incontinently he lept on him and knocked at him with his héeles. Then his maister cried out for help, which thing his seruaunts hearing, ranne spéedi­ly to him: & the foolish Asse whiche thought him selfe ciuill and curteous, was well beaten with a staffe.

Mor. All men can not doe all things, neyther all things become all men. Let no man meddle aboue his capacitie, nor go about that, whiche he is most vnto­wardly in.

310 Of a Camell and Iupiter.

A Crooked Camel required horns of god, whom for his euill pretence, God moc­ked, Petitions. and from thencefoorth cropped his ea­res, and made his head smaller, wherby he myght séeme altogether deformed.

Mor. Wée oughte to require of GOD that which is séemely.

311 Of an Oxe.

AN Oxe was offended, that Nature had giuen him strength withoute any de­fence, bicause he lacked weapons, whiche he thought better than strength: he there­fore besought Iupiter that he would vouch­safe to giue him horns, which when he had obtained, he forthwith repented him of his petition: For afore béeing naked, hée was frée, and could be caught by none, but now that he had horns, he was caught in a snare and ledde to Ploughe, and compelled to great paines.

Mor. Wée must aske nothing of God, but that wée vnderstand will do vs good.

312 Of the Wesill and the Myse.

THe Weasil through age lacking stren­gthe, and not able to hunte the Mise as he was wonte, he therefore to practise some shift, hid himself in a heape of meale, thinking therby easily to catche them: the Myse gréedie of the meale, ranne into it, and were all deuoured by the Weasill.

Mor. Where thou canste doo no good with a Lyons skin on thy backe, put on a Foxes skinne.

313 Of the Crowe and the Pitcher.

A Crowe being thirsty, found a Pitcher of water, whiche bycause it was déeper than he coulde well reache, he assayed to poure out the water, but he could not pre­uayle, then gathered hee stones on the sande, which he cast in, whereby the water was raysed higher, and he drank thereof.

Mor. Sometime that whiche can not be done by strength, may be by pollicie and counsell.

314 Of a Lyon and a Fore.

A Lion being taken in a snare, endeuou­red with all hys force to breake the bandes: the harder he plucked, the straigh­ter he was helde. The Foxe hauing an er­rande that way, and séeing this, sayde: O King, by no strength mayest thou escape hence, but by pollicie, for the snare must be lette out and loosed, and not drawen in. Which whē the Lion had done, he straight­way loosed the snare wherewith he was bound, and escaped frée.

Mor. Pollicie is farre better than strength.

315 Or a Wolfe being hungry.

A Wolfe in hys olde age not able any Poore and riche. more to hunte, was sore a hungred, nei­ther could he finde any kinsman or friende which would helpe him with meate. As he therefore wandred throughe a great Woode heauyly, he chaunced vpon a dead carcase of an Oxe, whiche he had scarse be­gonne to teare, but a companie of other wolues, rauens, and crowes came thither & prayed him to receyue them as hys friends to partake of his praie: Then the Wolfe sayd to him selfe: behold me whome lately my brethrē and sonnes regarded not, now straunge beastes reuerence, and desire my friendship, but they doe not this honour to mée, but to the Oxe.

Mor. A poore man is hated of all men, but the rich are honoured.

316 Of the Horsse and the Harte.

THe Horsse kept warre with the Harte, Pouertie praysed. and being often driuen from his meate and put to the worste, he lamentably desi­red the ayde of men, with whome he came into the fielde: then he that afore hadde the ouerthrow, became cōqueror: but his eni­mie [Page 214] being ouer come, and subdued, he him selfe became bond too man, fayne too carye him on his back, and a bit in his mouth. Of this fable writeth Horace.

A Hart in fight excelling much
the horsse, from meate him draue,
The strife was long, but horse was fayn,
the help of man to craue.
The byt he tooke with merry cheere,
straight vanquisht was his foe,
His Ryder yet he durst not cast,
nor yet his byt forgoe,
So he that dreadeth pouertie,
and can not vse a meane,
Shall leade his life in seruitude,
and loose his freedom cleane.

317 Of Geese.

THe Géese and the Cranes destroyed a péece of grounde, whereof the country men hearing, came sodainly vppon them, the Cranes espied them and flewe away, but the géese, bycause of the myght of their body not able to escape were taken.

Mor. When a towne is woonne, the poore escape easily, but the rich are taken captiue: for riches in warfare, are ra­ther a burthen, than a commoditie.

318 Of the Ape and his yong ones.

IVpiter sent out a precept, commaunding Praise not thy selfe. all liuyng things to appeare before him, that he mighte giue iudgement whose of­spring were the best fauored: ye beasts came running, the birds flying, and the Fishes swymming thither. Laste of all came the Ape, and with him his yong one, at whose ylfauoured buttockes euery one laughed. Tush (quod the Ape) whom pleaseth God Iupiter shall haue the victorie, yet in my iudgement this my chyld is faire, and ther­fore of right before al other to be preferred: whereat Iupiter also smyled.

Mor. We & ours seeme good in our own eies, but of vs & our doings, let other iudge.

319 Of Mariners.

IT hapned as many Maryners were say­ling Prayer. on the sea, that there arose a greate tempest sodeinly: then euery one prayed to his God for helpe, but one amongst the rest sayde: Ye know not what ye pray, for before these gods can goe to the Lorde for oure succoure, wée shall perishe thorough this storme: therefore I do thinke it beste to pray vnto that God which withoute the helpe of any other can deliuer vs from this [Page 216] present daunger: Then they cried to al­mighty God for helpe, and straight way the storme ceased.

Mor. We must not séeke for helpe at the foote, when we may go to the head.

320 Of the Owle.

IN the assemblie of birds, the Eagle sayde that he would choose the yong ones of o­ther Prayse of our owne. birds to serue in his court: and when euery one stroue to preferre his owne, the Owle sayd: I pray thee (O Quéene) receiue myne, which in beautie passe all the reste: why (quod the Egle) what beauty are thy sonnes of? The Owle aunswered: Of the same that I my selfe am: Then all the birds laughed excéedingly.

Mor No child is so deformed, which to his parents seemeth not faire.

321 Of a Foxe and a Dog.

A Fox being coursed by a Dog, and euen at ye point to be caught, hauing no way Prayse an­other for aduaūtage to shift him sayd: why woldest thou destroy mee thou dog, seeing my flesh thou canst not eate? Goe catch rather that hare (for there was one thē hard by) whose flesh mē iudge to be ye sweetest: the dog harkned to ye coun­sell of the Fox, & let him goe free, pursuing [Page 217] the hare, whom bycause of hys wonderfull swiftnesse he could not ouertake. Not long after, the Hare mette with the Foxe, bla­ming him for setting the Dog at him. The Fox answered him: I maruell what thou meanest to accuse me, whiche praysed thée so greatly: what wouldest thou haue sayd, if I had dispraysed thée?

Mor. Many vnder the colour of pray­sing, deuise vtter vndoing to some men.

322 Of the Wolfe and Porkupine.

ON a time the Wolf being hungry had Prepara­tion. a good fansy to deuoure a Porkupine, whom bicause of his sharpe pricks he durst not assayle, but inuented a craftie wyle to trap him in, coūselling hym not to trouble his backe with so many weapons in tyme of peace, séeing that other Archers carried none with them but when they go to war­fare: Nay (quod the Porkupine) we must suppose that there is no tyme voide of war ageinst a Wolfe.

Mor. A wise man ought always to be armed ageinst ye assaults of his enimies.

323 Of an Old man loth to dye.

A Certeine olde man desired death which Prepara­tiō to die. came to take his lyfe from him, to spare [Page 218] him till he might make his will, and pro­uide all other necessaries fit for suche a ior­ney: whom Death aunswered: Why hast not thou prepared thy self being so oft war­ned by me? Mary (quod he) I neuer sawe thée afore? Why (quod Death) when I dayly tooke, not onely those whiche were of lyke yeares to thyne (of which number ve­ry fewe remayne) but also yong men, chil­dren and babes, was it not sufficient war­ning that thou art mortal? when thy eyes wared dimmo, thy hearing thick, other sen­ses dayly decaying, & thy body being woorse and woorse, did I not tell thée that I was néere at hand? and yet thou sayest thou hast no warnyng: wherefore I will no longer prolong the tyme.

Mor. We must direct our life, as though death were alwayes before our eyes.

324 Of a Dog brought vp to hunting.

A Certeine man brought vp his Dog in Presente gayne re­membred. hunting, whome bycause hée was olde he pricked forward, but in vayne it was, for his pace was slacked, he could make no great hast. It chaūced that he caught a wild beast, which bycause he was toothlesse, slip­ped [Page 219] from him, whom his maister rebuked muche for that fault, and bet him also: the Dog aunswered, that of ryght he ought to pardon him, bycause he was now olde, but when he was yong he did his endeuor cou­ragiously: but I perceiue sayd he, that with out profite nothing pleaseth you, when I was yong and lustie, thou madest much of me, but now that I am old, thou castest me off for Hauks meate: when I got any pray I was welcome, but now that I am slow and toothlesse, I am put back: but if thou were a good master, for my good déeds that I haue done, thou wouldest cherishe me in my age.

Mor. A good turn once past is soone for­gotten, if it be to come it is not much re­garded, if there bée any profit presently, it is well remembred.

325 Of a Man which plucked vp a Hedge.

A Certeine man rayled ageinst a hedge, Preser­uers. wherewith his vyne was enclosed, by­cause it was barren, which he cut vp & cast away as a thing vnprofitable. Then the Vyne lying opē, & made common both for men & cattaile, was wasted by euery body. [Page 220] The Lord of the Vine seing this, blamed hym selfe of follie, seyng so foolishly he had remoued the hedge yt preserued his grapes.

Mor. They whiche preserue thinges, though they séeme ydle, do no lesse than they whiche haue gathered them togy­ther with their trauaile.

326 Of the Asse and the Lyon.

THe Cock sometyme fed with an Asse, to whō as the Lion was cōming, ye Cocke Presump­tion. crowed out aloude, and the Lion straight­way fled (for men saye) he is afeard at the crowyng of a Cocke. The Asse supposing that he ranne away bicause of hym, went streyght after the Lyon, whome when hée had so farre pursued that they were with­out the hearing of the Cocks crowing, the Lion returned and deuoured him, who as he was dying, cryed out: Ah wretche and madde body that I am, for I am borne of none that were warriors, and wherefore haue I rushed into the hoste?

Mr. Many men assaile their enimies which vpon set purpose do humble them selues, by the whyche meanes they are slayne.

327 Of Cocks.

AS two Cocks fought together for the Pryde. Hens, the one put the other to flyghte, which hid him selfe in a darke corner: But the cōqueror flew vp to an high wall, wher he stoode and crowed aloude: forth with an Egle flewe at hym and caught hym: since which time, he that hid himself did treade the Hens without feare.

Mor. God withstandeth the proude, but on yt lowly he poureth his goodnesse.

328 Of the Horse and the Asse.

SOmetyme a Horsse decked wyth fayre trappers and a sadle, greatly neyghing, ran thorough a hygh way, whose running an Asse laden by chaunce dyd let, he all ra­ging and chewyng his bit for anger, sayd: Ah lither lurdeyn, why withstandest thou the Horse? Giue place or I will tread thée downe: the Asse durste not once bray, but quietly auoyded. It happened as the Horse ran his race, his hoofe brake, who then be­ing paste running or making any shewe, was spoyled of his ornamentes, and after solde to a Tanner. The Asse séeing him coming with a Tanner, sayde vnto him: [Page 222] What good sir, how hapneth this kynde of wéede? where is thy gilt saddle, thy studded trappers and glittering brydle? Thus it is fit my friende to happen to euery one that is proude.

Mor. Many men in their prosperity are so puft vp with pride, that they clean for­get them selues and al modestie, but for their presumption they soone suffer ad­uersitie.

329 Of a Crane.

A Crane séeing an Egle flying vp as high as the sunne, and to behold it perfectly, he sayd to himself: I am as faire and great as the Egle, I will therefore flie vp to the Sun, and looke vppon it as stedfastly as the Egle, and after I shal be estéemed as high­ly as she: but as he mounted vp toward the starres, his strengthe was gone thorough wearinesse, neyther could he flie vp to the Sun: yet such was his pride, that he would not come downe, but began to mount vp­ward still. But being thus combred, that be neither coulde stay himselfe, neither flie to the sunne, he fell downe.

Mor. Who so clymbeth higher than he should, falleth lower than he would.

330 Of Iupiter and the Rauen.

ON a tyme Iupiter myndyng too create a Proude of an others purse. king of the foules, appoynted a day of assemblie, to the ende that hée whiche was comliest shold be appoynted king. The Ra­uen hearing therof, and knowing his owne deformitie, gathered together diuers fea­thers and decked himself, that he was good­lyest of all. When the day appoynted was come, the foules assembled together: then Iupiter would haue made the Rauen king bycause of his gaynesse, whereat the other disdayning, plucked euery one his feathers from him, whereof he being spoiled was a Rauen as before time.

Mor. He that hangeth on another mans sléeue, if he chaunce to fall from him, all the world shall know what he is.

331 Of a Flea and a Lyon.

THe Flea came to the Lyon and sayde: Falles of pride. Neyther feare I thée, neither arte thou stronger than I, but I pray thée what is thy strength? thou scratchest with thy nayles, and with thy téethe thou bytest, so doeth a woman fyghting wyth hir husband: but [Page 224] in strength I farre excéede thée, and if thou wilt, let vs go fight. The Trumpet being blowen, the Flea stucke faste aboute his nosethrills byting: but the Lyon with hys owne nayles tore him selfe til he was cha­fed: The Flea hauing ouercome the Lion sounded the Trumpet, and reioyced: but as he flew away, he was entangled in a Cop­web: and being redy to be deuoured, he la­mented that hée stroue with the greatest beasts, & now to bée kild by a vile Spyder.

Mor. This fable is ageinst those which vanquishe greate men, and are vanqui­shed by meane persons.

332 Of the Pecock and the Chough.

WHen the birds woulde make them a king, ye Pecock prayd them to choose Princes. him for his beautie: when they so mynded, the Chough began to say: if in thy raigne ye Egle pursue vs, how wilt thou help vs?

Mor. Princes must be chosen not one­ly for their beautie, but also for their strength and wisedome.

333 Of a Man and a Dog.

A Certein man had prepared a supper, to whiche hée badde certein of his friends, [Page 225] whose Dog likewise desired another Dog, saying: Friend, come and suppe with mée. Which Dog being come in at the doores, & séeing such great chéere toward, reioyced greatly and sayd to him self: Oh what ioye hath hapned mée of late, for I shall fill my belly so full, that I shall not be hungry to morrow: and as he wagged his tayle for ioye, bicause he trusted in hys friende, the Cooke seing him thus do, caught him by the legs and cast him out of the window: whē the Dog was fallen, he rose vp quickly and ran howling away: As he went a dog met him, and asked him what good chéere he had to supper, the dogge aunswered: I was so out of measure dronk, that I knew not the way whereout I came.

Mor. We must not trust to those which promise vs a good turne of an other mans gifte.

333 Of a Heardman.

AS a Heardman kept a Heard of Buls, he lost a Calf, whom in euery desert he sought a long tyme, but when he could not finde him, he prayed to Iupiter, promising if he would shewe hym the Théefe whiche [Page 226] stole his Calfe, to offer a Gote in sacrifice to him. It hapned as he walked in a groue of Okes, he found that his calf was deuou­red by the Lion, whereat trembling for feare, he cast vp his handes to heauen and sayd: God lupiter I promised to giue thée a kid if I found ye Théefe, now if I escape his hands, I wil vndertake to giue thée a Bul.

Mor. This Fable is against vnluckie men, that lacking ought, praye to finde it, whiche hauing founde, they séeke to auoyde.

334 Of the Lyon and the Foxe.

WHat time the Lion fell sick, al beasts came to visite him, only the Fox stac­ked his comming, to whome the Lion sent his Ambassadours to summon him to ap­pere before him, bicause his only presence would much delight the king, besides that, suspicion of daunger there is none, firste, bicause the Lion is his chiefest friend, ther­fore desireth greatly to speake with him: againe, he lay sore sick, so as if he ment to hurte him, he hadde no force thereto. The Fox wrote again, wishing recouerie of his health, for which he woulde praye vnto the [Page 227] Gods, but in no wise he would come to sée him: for he was afrayde of the foote steps, whiche all looked toward his Denne, but none backward, by which it was euidēt, ye many beasts came in, but none returned.

The aunswer of the crafty Fox
vnto the Lion sent,
Which in his Den lay very sick,
to shew is my intent:
Bycause the tract of many beasts
I finde to enter there,
But none of them returns agayne,
which giues me cause of feare.

Mor. Take héed how thou trustest pro­mises, whiche except thou doo, thou shalt oft be beguyled: for of words, & déedes a man may first coniecture & after iudge.

335 Of a man created Cardinall.

A Certein merry conceyted fellowe, hea­ring Promotiō. his friend to be created Cardinal, came to gréete him for his promotion: he lofty & swelling with pride, coūterfayting that he knewe not his olde friende, asked who he was: the other being ready in his merry aunswer, sayde: I pitie thée and o­thers that come to suche promotion, for as [Page 228] soone as ye haue got suche honours, ye léese so your sight, feeling, and other senses, that ye cleane forget your old friendes.

Mor. Some being promoted to digni­tie, despise their old acquaintaunce.

336 Of the Foxe and the Gote.

THe Foxe and the Gote beyng bothe thirsty, descended into a Well to drink: Prouidēce after they hadde bothe dronk their fill, the Gote looked round about to get out, to whō the Foxe sayd: Be of good chere, for I haue found a shift to help vs both out, for if thou wilt stand vpright & leane on thy forféete, and pitch thy hornes fast to the Wall that I may climbe vp on thy backe, when I haue got foorth, I will also drawe thee foorth: The Gote with all his harte follo­wed his aduise. When the Fox therby had skipped out of the well, he lested about the brinks thereof, reioysing much, for whiche he blamed the Fox that hée broken promis with him. Nay (quod the Foxe) if thou hadst as much witte as thou hast haires in thy beard, thou wouldest not haue gone downe into the Well before thou haddest well pondered how to come out.

[Page 229] Mor. Wise men will firste for sée the ende of a thing, and after enterprise it.

337 Of Field Mise.

A Flocke of Fielde Mise appointed to gnawe downe an oke full of mast that they might haue their meate the redier, so as they neede not so oft runne vp and down for it. Then one wiser than the rest forbad thē, saying: If we destroye our nourisher, who shall giue foode to vs and our seede in time to come?

Mor. A wyse man ought not onely to beholde things present, but also things to come.

338 Of a Flea.

AS a Flea was byting a mā, he was ta­ken, who asked what he was, seeing he Punishmē [...] of vices. fed of him: aunswered, he was of that kind of beastes, which as nature ordeyned, liued by that meanes, praying him not to kill him, bycause he could not do muche harme, whereat the man laughed, saying: I will therfore the sooner kil thée, bicause it is not lawfull to hurt any, eyther muche or litle.

Mor. We must not fauour the wic­ked, [Page 230] whither their trespas be small or great.

339 Of the Sheepe and the Shepherd.

A Shéepe sometime rayled on the Shep­herd, Rayling. bicause he could not be cōtēt with the milke that she gaue him for his foode & his sōnes, but he did fliece him of his wooll. The shepherd offēded with this talke, lead hir Lambe to the slaughter: What (quod the shéepe) canst thou doo me any worse vil­lanie? Yea (quod the sheperd) that I can, for I may slaye thée and cast thee out to be torne in pieces by Wolues & Dogs: then the sheepe durst not mutter, being afrayd of some further inconuenience.

Mor. We ought not to be angry with God, if he suffer our goods and our chil­dren to be taken frō vs, séeing he is able more gréeuously to punishe bothe the quicke and the dead.

340 Of Frogs.

TWo Frogs fed in the marishes, it hap­ned that Sommer that the water dried Rashnesse. vp, wherevpon they forsoke it and sought another, at length they found a déepe well: which when they hadde seene, the one sayd [Page 231] to the other: Lette vs goe downe into this Well. Nay, soft (quod his fellowe) howe shall we get vp again, if the water be dried vp here?

Mor. We ought to enterprise nothing vnaduisedly.

341 Of a Fisher.

A Certein Fisher being but a noouice in that arte, tooke his pypes and his nets and went to the Sea, and standing on a rocke, played first with his pype, supposing that by his swéete melodie the fishes would daunce: but when he had long tryed yt way and could not prosper, he layde downe his pype and tooke vp his net, which he cast in­to the Sea, wherin he drewe many fishes. When he had emptied his nette and sawe them skipping, he sayd: Oh wicked Crea­tures, when I piped, ye would not daunce, & now that I haue left off, ye begin to skip.

Mor. This fable is against those which do any thing without aduisement, and out of tyme.

342 Of the Ape and the Foxe.

IN the assemblie of brute beastes, the Ape daunced, for which he was created King. [Page 232] The Foxe enuying him, brought him to a place where he had espied fleshe in a snare, to whom he shewed that he hadde founde a treasure which he coulde not haue bycause by the lawe it is the kings right, willing him to take it bycause he was king. The Ape went rashly in, and forthwith was caught in the snare: Then he accused the Foxe of treason toward his person. Why (quod the Foxe) shalt thou be King ouer beastes, which art so mad?

Mor. Hée which goeth rashly to worke, falleth hastely into misfortune.

343 Of a Doue.

A Doue being very thirsty, espied in a certeine place a pot of water painted, which he supposing to be verely, flew with great force, and vnawares dashed against the table, wherewith she brake hir wings, fell to the grounde, and was caught vp by one that passed by.

Mor. Some men for great ioye, vnad­uisedly taking matters in hand, do ther­by cast them selues away.

344 Of a Currier and a Hunter.

ON a time a Currier came to a Hunter to bye a beares skin, for which he drew [Page 233] money to haue paid. In faith (quod the hun­ter) presently I haue none, but to morrow I wil go a hunting, and if I chaunce to kil a Beare, thou shalt haue his skinne. The Currier (to refresh his spirites) went into the forest with him, and bycause he would the better behold the pastime betwene the Hunter and the Beare, he climbed into an excéeding highe trée. The Hūter went bold­ly to the Beares Denne, who put in hys dogs and rouzed him. It happened that the Beare shunned hys blowe and foorthwith strake the Hunter to the grounde: who knowing the nature of the beast to bee, to take pitie of a carcase, helde his breath and fayned him self to be dead. The beare smel­led at him euerywhere, & perceyuing by no meanes any life in him, departed away. When the Currier saw that the beast was gone, and that there was no daunger, he came downe out of ye trée and went to the Hunter, whom he bad arise, and afterward demaunded what the Beare sayde in hys eare? He warned mée (quod he) that here­after I sell not a Beares skinne, before I haue caught him.

Mor. We ought not accounte that we [Page 234] haue not, as sure as that we haue.

345 Of the Beauer.

THe Beauer is a foure footed beast, com­monly liuing in pooles, whose members Regard of health. Phisitians occupie: who beyng pursued & ready to be taken, and knowing the cause of his persecution, cuts of hys priuie mem­bers, and casts it to them whiche followe him, whereby he escapeth.

Mor. Wise men hauing regard of their health, ought to spare for no cost.

346 Of the Houpe.

THe most parte of birdes were bidden to the Mariage of the Eagle, there the Regard of gaye clothes. Houpe was set vp aboue the reste, bicause of his faire Crowne and goodly feathers, whereat the other birds disdayned, for that he vsed to tumble in dunghils and in the fylth.

347 Of the Beame.

A Great piece of Timber being caried in a Carte, rebuked the Oxen that they Reioysing. went so slowly, saying: Come for shame ye slouthfull luskes, your burden is but light. Thou mockest vs (quod the oxen) yet doest [Page 235] thou not knowe what hangeth ouer thy head: we will soone caste off this lode, but thou shalt beare a wayte till thou be ready to breake. Then the Beame repented, and from thence foorth durst not once shoote out a rayling woord against them.

Mor. Lette no man reioyce ouer an o­thers miserie, seeing he may be subiecte to greater.

349 Of the Lion, the Bore, and the Rauens.

THe Lion sometime prepared to fight a­gainst the Bore: wherfore the Rauens beheld them from aboue, that they might forthwith deuoure him whiche was ouer­come. But they became friēds again, & the other were disapointed of their purpose.

Mor. We should not reioyce at an o­ther mans harme.

350 Of a Wolfe.

A Wolfe being old and not able any lon­ger Religious men. to hunte, gaue him selfe to religion: put vpon him a Monks attyre, and begged meate from doore to doore: and being re­buked by another Wolfe, sayde: What wouldest thou I should doe? My téeth are oute, and runne I can not, wherefore I [Page 236] mistrust otherwise how to liue.

Mor. Many addict them selues to Reli­gion bicause they cā not otherwyse liue.

351 Of a Beare.

AS a Beare scolded by chaunce with his Repētance to late. Wife, he thrust out hir eyes, but after repēting, he was so greeued therwith, that he byt of his nayles. And when in talking he sayd, that for ye loue he bare to hir he had cast away his best defēce: What good (quod his wife) doth this to mée? Thou shouldest haue done this before thou scratchedst out my eyes.

Mor. After harme done it is too late to repent, seeing that which is done, can not be vndone.

352 Of a simple Countryman.

THere was a Countryman which as he came frō market, heard two Cuckoes Reward for well doing. aunswering one an other out of two sun­drie woods. And when the Cuckoe of the o­ther wood had néere put to silence his coun­trycuckoe, he lighted off hys horsse & clim­bed a tree, and as well as he could, he holpe his countrycuckoe with his crying. In the [Page 237] meane time a Wolf deuoured his horsse: thē was he fayn to go home on foote, where he complayned to his neighbours, how for the honour of his country he had holpe his Cuckoe, whereby he had susteyned great losse. Then they all with one accorde payd his damages, supposing that it was not fit that any should receyue hinderance, which had trauelled for their common wealth.

353 Of the Egle and the Dorre.

A Hare being pursued by an Eagle, ran into the hole of a Dorre, requiring suc­cour Reuenge­ment. of him. The Dorre besought the Ea­gle not to kill his suppliaunt, desiring him for mightie God Iupiters sake not to des­pise his weaknesse: but she being displea­sed, wafted at ye Dorre with hir wings, and snatched away the Hare, which she deuou­red. The Dorre flew after the Eagle, to learn where hir nest was: When he was come at it, he rolled downe the egs & brake them. She was sore displeased that any durst enterprise to do it: yet she made hir nest the second time in an higher trée, there the Dorre serued hir agayne as before. Then the Eagle being altogither in doubt [Page 238] what to do, flew vp to Iupiter to whom she is consecrated, and layde hir thirde brood in his lap, committing them to his custodie. But y Dorre roiled togither a ball of dung whiche he caried vp and lette fall into Iu­piters bosome, who rose vp to shake off the Dung, & forgetting the egs cast thē downe, by meane wherof they were brokē. When Iupiter vnderstood by the Dorre that he had done this to be reuenged of the Eagle, for she had not only iniuried the Dorre, but al­so committed wickednesse against Iupiter him selfe, he tolde the Eagle when she re­turned, that the Dorre was the cause of hir woe, and that he did it iustly. Therefore Iupiter, bicause he would not haue the kind of Eagles to be scant, counselled the Dorre to be at one with the Egle: but bycause he would not be persuaded, Iupiter appointed the Eagles to breade in that time, when the Dorres appeare not.

Mor. Despise no mā, seing there is none but being prouoked can reuenge himself.

354 Of the Storke and the Swallow.

THe Strorke somtime built in the top of a Toure, & a Swallow with in, which [Page 239] for ioy that she had yong ones, made great thattering, wherewith the Storke was of­fended, bicause he could take no rest with his yong ones, for hir great noyse. Whē ye Swallow was abroade, he plucked down hir nest and killed hir yong, who being re­turned to hir nest, made great sorrowe for that mischaunce, but bicause she knew not the doer, she reuēged it not. Shortly after, the Swallow made a new nest and hadde yong, for ioy of whom she agayn chattered. But the Storke being newly disquieted, called to hir, saying: I will serue thee and thy birdes agayne as lately I did, excepte thou leaue of thy chattering that I may take my rest. The Swallow hearing this, was greatly inflamed to be reuēged: wher­fore on a time when the Stork was a sleep in hir nest, the Swallow set fire thereon & burnt hir and hir chickens to ashes.

Mor. We ought to doo no wrong to our inferiours least priuily they hurt vs.

355 Of the Town Mouse and the Coūtry Mouse.

IT pleased a town Mouse for his recreati­on Riches. to walke abroad into the coūtry, whō when the cuntry Mouse had espied, he desi­red [Page 240] him home to his house, where al things were made ready, and to supper they went: he brought out all his prouision of victuals that he had layd vp against the winter, to make this iolly gueste some daintly théere. The towne Mouse frouning thereat, disa­lowed much the scarcitie of the Countrey, and forthwith commended the plentie of the Citie. As he returned to the Citie, he brought with him the country Mouse, to the ende to accomplishe his craking wyth effecte: They fell to their meate, whiche sumptuously the towne Mouse had ready prepared. And as they were merry togy­ther: in the midst of their feast they heard the noyse of a key in the locke, there was quaking and trembling with a great hurly burly, and happy was hée that could escape soonest. The country Mouse vnaccustomed to such flights, besides that ignorant of the place, scaped very narrowly. When the seruaunt was gone, the towne Mouse re­turned to the feast and called for the coun­try Mouse: He being yet afrayd, came crée­ping out, and after desired by the Towne Mouse to fall to his meate, he asked, why­ther this were a cōmon custome with him? [Page 241] Yea (quod hée) it is dayly, and therefore not to be wayed: What dayly? sayd the coun­try Mouse. I promise you, these dainties tast more of the sowre than of the swéete: for my part I had rather liue like a begger quietly, than with these delicates in suche ieoperdie.

Mor. Riches truly make a semblant of pleasure, but if thou consider them ear­nestly, they are not without much daū ­ger and pensiuenesse.

356 Of the Mule and the Horsle.

A Mule espied a Horsse gorgeously dec­ked with a gilt byt, a faire sadle, & pur­ple trappers, at whose Fortune he enuted much, supposing him to be happy, bicause he alwayes fared well, and went gayly: contrarywise, his owne estate in compari­son of his to be miserable. For (quod hée) I am ouerladē with the packsadle, and I am dayly drudge to cary burthens. But shortly after, he espied the horsse returning from battaile sore wounded, then he accounted his owne estate better than the horses, say­ing: I hadde rather get my liuing hardly with my dayly labour, and to be cladde in [Page 242] vile aray, than after such faire and trim ap­parell to be in daunger of my life.

Mor. We must not enuie Kings and Princes bicause of their wealth & sub­stance, séeing they are subiecte to many moe perils than poore men are.

357 Of a Deuill.

A Deuil wādring through the world (as his maner is) marked a certeine yong man reioysing at the death of his parents, whereat he was very gladde: but going a litle further he wept, séeing an other very heauy at his Fathers buriall, who beyng demaūded the cause of so diuers affections, aunswered: The laughing of the sonne for the death of his parēts, declareth that those being riche are deade, of whiche number very fewe escape our handes: but the wée­ping is a token of the fathers pouertie: and the kingdome of Heauen, for the moste parte, is wont to belong to those whiche are poore.

Mor. Too much riches do cary a man downe to hell.

358 Of the Birds.

THe Birds were greatly afrayd least the Rich eni­mies. Dorres should kill them with shooting off Bals, bicause they heard that they had rolled togither a great heape of bals. Feare not sayd the Sparrow, for how shall they shoote bals at vs that flie in the aire, when they can not carry them on earth but with much toyle?

Mor. We néede not feare the riches of our foes, when we see they lacke wit.

360 Of an Oxe and a Bullock.

AN Oxe being well strykē in age, dayly Riottous­nesse. went to plow. It hapned yt a yong hey­fer whiche neuer had laboured, fetched his friskes in the pastures not farre off, and scorned the toyling of the older, boasting much of his own libertie, that he had tasted neither yoke nor chayn, but y others necke was worne bare with labor. The Oxe pre­sently answered nothing: not long after he espied this royster led to be sacrificed, then hee sayd thus to him: What end hath now thy easy life? Thy carelesse liuing at harts ease hath brought thee to ye axe, I think now thou wilt rather counsel me to labor thā to [Page 244] idlenesse, which is the cause of thy death.

Mor. To leade an honest life there née­deth trauell: the Sluggard and hée that is bent to riottous liuing, shall come to that which he would be lothe.

361 Of Birds.

THe Birds tooke counsell to choose them [...]ulers. sundrie Kings, bicause the Eagle alone was not able to gouerne so many flockes: which thing they had put in execution, had not the Crowe warned them to leaue off their purpose: who being demaunded the cause, why she thought it not meet to choose many Kings, aunswered: Sooner is one sack filled than many.

Mor. It is better to bée vnder the domi­nion of one than many.

362 Of a wicked Man.

A Wicked Man went to Apollo whiche is in Delphus, to trie his cunning, for [...]ecretes [...]nowen to [...]od. whiche purpose he tooke a Sparowe with him in his hande, which vnder his cloke he hidde: who as he stood néere to the golden table in Apollos temple, asked the GOD, saying: O Apollo, that whiche I holde in [Page 245] my hande, is it a liue or dead? If he hadde sayd dead, he would haue shewed the Spa­row aliue: if aliue, he woulde haue stran­gled it and shewed it dead. But God Apol­lo knowing his wicked pretēce, sayd: whi­ther thou wilt, doo: for it is in thy power eyther to shewe him aliue or dead.

Mor. God can not be deceyued, ney­ther is any thing hid from him.

363 Of a Boy that would not learne.

A Boye whiche hated learning, being brought by his Father into a Schoole, could not be enticed by any faire meanes of his Maister, to speake the first letter of the Alphabete: Then sayde his Maister, open thy mouth, for that this Letter requireth, but he gaped and spake not. The Maister seeing his labor lost, bad him sitte amongst his fellowes, warning them to persuade him to speake onely this Letter: then his schoolefellows exhorted him in the best ma­ner that they coulde, saying: Is it such a payne to sayd A? Nay (quod the Boy) but if I spake that, he would make me learne B. and so the rest. But neyther my maister nor my Father shall haue the power to [Page 246] make me learne.

Mor. They which are vnwilling to learne, can neuer be forced to it.

364 Of the Doue and the Crowe.

A Doue being fed in a douehouse, was [...]eruaunts. excéeding proude of hir fertilitie: The Crowe hearing therof, sayd to hir: Friend, brag no more hereof, for the more thou bréedest the more care thou heapest.

Mor. Amongest seruaunts, those are most miserable, which in time of their bondage get many children.

365 Of the Asse and the Calfe.

AN Asse and a Calfe fed togither in one pasture, by chaūce they heard the sound of a bell, which they supposed to be a signe that their enimies were at hand, to whom the Calfe sayde: Let vs be packing hence fellowe, least our enimies take vs priso­ners. Nay, flie thou hence rather (quod the Asse) whom they vse to kill and eate, for I care not, I know this, where soeuer I be­come my life shall be to cary burdens.

Mor. Let not seruaunts feare muche to chaunge their maisters, least the last be [Page 247] woorser than the first.

366 Of the Bat and the Weasell.

A Bat by chaunce fell to the ground, and Shiftes. was caught by a Weasell, who ready to be killed, besought him to saue his life: but he sayd, that he could not let hir escape, bicause he naturally hated all birdes: she aunswered, yt she was no bird but a mouse, whereby she was loused. Again falling an other time & being taken by an other We­sell, she prayed that he would not deuoure hir. Nay (quod hée) I am an enimie to all Mise: she aunswered that she was a Bat & no Mouse, whereby she escaped again: and so it chaunced that by changing hir name twice she got hir pardon.

Mor. We must not always sing one song, seing they that turne as the world doeth, commonly escape daunger.

367 Of the Foxe and the Cat.

IT hapned amongst other talke that the Foxe had with the Cat, he bragged that hée had so sundrie kinds of shifts, yt hée could fil a bag withal. For my part (quod ye Cat) I haue but one to trust vnto at a pinche: [Page 248] As they were thus in their talke, a great route of Dogs came hastily running vpon them: Then the Cat skipped vp into an highe trée, but the Fox being inclosed with the dogs, was caught.

Mor. One counsell so it be true and of force, is better than many wyles.

368 Of a Marchant and a Ievve.

A Certein prodigall fellowe hauing wa­sted all his Fathers goods, applied his minde to practise deceyte. It happened on a time, that he wrapped a piece of ordure in a cloute and brought it into the market, saying that he had a precious thing whiche was of suche force, that if any man tasted the least crumnie therof, he shold haue ful­filled what soeuer he thought of. But a Jewe, whose maner is priuily to marke al things, thought, if he did buy it, that he would haue in his minde many Townes and Lordships, when he tasted of it (by­cause he would be excéeding riche) He came therfore secretly vnto him and asked the price, whervnto this prodigall fellow sayd: Auaūt, thou shalt not buy it, for thy clothes declare, that thou art not able. The Jewe [Page 249] sayd to him, how knowest thou? Tell mée the price, he aunswered. 700. Crownes: the Jewe payd him the money, vpon cōdition, that if he had sayd true, he should enioye it: but when he had tasted it, he spit it out, and sayd it was ordure. Then the seller hauing performed his promise, pleaded the cause before the maior, and enioyed the money.

369 Of a Carter.

A Certein Carter asked his wagon, why Sick folks that whéele which was worst made so much creaking, séeing none of the reste dyd so? The waggon aunswered: Sick folkes are wayward, and alwayes complayning.

Mor. Diseases cause men to cōplayne.

370 Of an old Woman.

MEn commonly will (if through their follie any mischaūce happen to them) Sinners. laye the blame to Fortune or the Deuill, to excuse them selues, they doo so much fol­low their appetites: wherewith the De­uill not contented, when by chaunce he es­pied an olde woman climbing a tree, whēce he perceyued she was like to fall, and then the faulte would be layde on his necke, he [Page 250] called for witnesses, to whom he sayd: Be­hold, that same old womā hath climbed that trée without my consent, where I sée she will fall: beare witnesse therfore with me that I counselled hir not to goe vp. Imme­diatly she fell: then being demaunded why she climbed that trée, answered, the Deuil forced me: then he brought foorth his wit­nesses, and proued that she did that with­out his aduise.

Mor. Those men deserue no pardon, which voluntarily sinning, blame For­tune or the Deuill therfore.

371 Of the Nightingale and the Rauen.

ON a solemne feastday the Eagle bad ye birds to dinner: after it was done, the Singing. Egle called forth the Nightingale, whome he bad to sing some melodie to lighten their hartes withall. She forthwith soong swéet­ly, that it delited the hearers. In the meane time a Rauen passing by and hearing this, sayd: I will also sing with ye Nightingale, for I haue a base voyce which shal be heard farre off, and hée began to crooke very loth­somely, which caused the Nightingale to hold hir peace. The other birds were offen­ded with the Rauen for troubling ye feast: [Page 251] then the Egle commaunded him, eyther to departe or to hold his peace, but he answe­red that he would sing, & for hir he would not stir an ynch. The Egle cōmaunded him again to auoyd, which bicause he stubborn­ly disobeyed, was cōmaunded to be slayn.

Mor. It is vayne to sing, where the hea­rers are vnwilling.

372 Of the Doue and the Pie.

THe Pie asked the Doue what was the Simpli­citie. cause that she alwayes built in one place where hir chickens were always ta­ken away: she aunswered, simplicitie.

Mor. Good men are easely beguyled.

373 Of an Asse and Frogs.

AS an Asse laden with wood passed tho­rough a marshe, by chaunce he slipped Slouthful­nesse. and fell, who not being able to aryse, lamē ­ted & sighed, but the Frogs which were in the marshe, hearing him sighing, sayde: What wouldst thou doo sirra, if thou hadst continued here so long as we haue, whiche for so small a time doest so mourne?

Mor. This talke may any man vse to a slouthful person, which for a litle paynes is troubled, being able easely to ouer­come great affaires.

374 Of the Pellican.

THe Goose and the Duck made somtime a great feast, to the whiche they bad all tame Foules, but to sette out their Sup­per, they went into the wildernesse and found the Pellican, whome they brought with them to their banket. Whē the feast was done, they all besought the Pellican to abide with them and not to liue so soli­tarily in suche penurie, who at length be­ing somewhat persuaded, continued a few dayes with them and made great bankets: but when he would haue prayd, he was in­terrupted with their chattering: wherfore he left their company, and liued the rest of his life in solitarinesse.

Mor. Who so will serue God truly, must doe it alone quietly.

375 Of the Smith and his Dog.

A Certein Smith had a whelpe, whiche Sluggards all the while he stroke on his yron, did slepe: but when he went to meate, the dog would straightway arise & eate the crums that fell from the table, or bones, or any thing else. Whiche thing the Smith mar­king well, sayd to his Dog: Thou wretch, [Page 253] I cā not tell how to handle thée, for whiles I am busie in my worke, thou liest snor­ting and sléeping, but when my téeth goe, thou startest vp and waggest to mée thy tayle.

Mor. Idle sluggardes which liue of an other mans sweate, must be punished according to the rigour of the law.

376 Of the Bull and the Mouse.

A Mouse did byte a Bull by the foote, and Strength. straightway ran into his hole: the Bul shaked his hornes and sought for his eni­mie, but sée him he could not: then ye mouse laughed him to scorne, saying: Bicause of thy strēgth despise not euery body, for now a silly Mouse hath hurte thee, & scaped frée.

Mor. Let no man regarde his enimie.

377 Of a Weasell.

A Weasell came into a Smiths shop, & Stryfe. licked on a fyle which lay there, wher­with hir tong being torne, bled very much: She reioyced greatly, supposing to cary a­way something from the yron, vntill hir tong altogither was worne away.

Mor. This fable is against those which [Page 254] in strife hurt them selues.

378 Of Hares.

THe Hares sometime holding war with the Eagles, required ayde of the Foxes: but they aunswered, we would helpe you, but that we knowe what ye are, and with whom ye fight.

Mor. They whiche striue with their betters, set litle by their owne health.

379 Of the Ramme and the Bull.

THere was a Ramme amongs many o­thers which with strēgth of his hornes and his head, at the first conflict easely sub­dued al the rest, whom bicause none durst meete (he had so often the victorie) he swel­led with pride and chalenged the Bull to fight: but at the first onset when he rushed against the Buls forehead, he was stricken again so vehemētly, that he was nie dead, & then sayde: Ah foole, what haue I done? Why haue I prouoked so mighty an ad­uersarie, to whome nature hath made mée vnequall?

Mor. We must not striue with our betters.

380 Of the Quayle and the Larke.

THe Quayle bicause of preseruation of Societie. his kinred, desired to haue a league of a­mitie with ye Gossehauke, wherfore he desi­red the Larke to make his commēdations, and to require peace with him on his be­half. The Larke did the message honestly, wherwith the Gossehauke being troubled, aunswered: This request is hard to graūt, neuerthelesse I will that the Quayle come with thée vnto mee and speake for hir self: The Larke shewed hir this aunswer, who much reioysing therof, went to the Hauke to confirme the league, who being rauished with the sight of them, forthwith deuou­red them both.

Mor. None ought to match him selfe with his better.

381 Of the Nut tree, the Asse, and the Woman.

A Certeine Woman questioned with a Stripes. Nut trée growing by the high way side, which was alwayes pelted with stones by passengers, why he was so mad, yt the more he were beaten, the more encrease he yel­ded, the Walnut aunswered: Remember you not the old Prouerbe? The Nut trée ye Asse, & the Womā, are al vnder one law: [Page 256] which thrée will doo nothing well without great store of stripes.

Mor. Some men make a rod often­times for their own tayle.

382 Of the Beare and the Bee.

A Beare sometime stinged of a Bée, was so wood angry thereat, that with hys Suffering wrong. nayles he tore in pieces the hyues where the Bées made hony: The Bas seing their hiues plucked down, their food caried away, & their yong ones slayn: rushing al at once, assayled the Beare, and nighe stong him to death. He hardly scaping from them, sayde to himself: how much better had it bin for mee, paciently to haue suffered the stinging of one Bée, than to prouoke so many eni­mies against mee?

Mor. Sometime it is farre better to suffer wrong done by one, than in re­quiting it to procure many foes.

383 Of the Sovve and the Dog.

THe Sowe and the Dog taunted eyther other: The Sowe swore by Venus, Tauntes. that without doubte she woulde teare the Dog in pieces: Hee aunswered hir againe [Page 257] flowtingly, saying: Ye sweare very well by Venus, for ye shewe that shée loueth you well, bicause that tasting thy filthy fleshe, she suffereth thée not at al to enter hir tem­ple. The Sowe sayd: For this cause it ap­peareth that the Goddesse loueth mée the more, for him that either killeth or hurteth mée, she vtterly abhorreth: as for thée, ey­ther aliue or dead, thou sauourest yll.

Mor. Wise Oratours cunningly con­uert to their own prayse the tauntes of their enimies.

384 Of a Boy and his Mother.

A Boy stole his Fellowes Booke out of the Schoole, whiche he brought to his Theft. mother: but she corrected him not there­fore, but rather made much of him: Who waxing elder, stole greater things: and at a time being taken with the manner, he was straightway led to execution, whome his mother followe and lamented: but he prayed the Hangman that he might talke a woorde or two in his mothers eare, who straightway layde hir eare to his mouth, which he with his téeth byt off: his mother and diuers others rebuked him that he had [Page 258] not only played the théefe, but also vsed vil­lanie to his mother. She (sayde hée) is the cause of my vndoing: for if she had chasti­sed me when I stoale the Booke, I had not new bin led to hanging.

Mor. Faults which are not at the firste corrected, do increase greater.

385 Of Mercurius and Tyresias.

MErcurius desirous to knowe, whether the prophecie of Tyresias were true, he stole his oxen in the countrey, and came to him in the likenesse of a man into the citie, and lodged with him. Tyresias vnder­standing his oxen to be lost, went abroade and tooke with him Mercurius, to consider by diuination of the théefe, whom he bad to tell him what birde he did sée: he aunswe­red that he sawe an Eagle on the left hand, flying toward the right hande, he sayd that he had nothing to doo with hir. The seconde tyme Mercurius tolde him, that he sawe a Crowe sitting vpō a trée, sometime looking vp, sometime leaning downe, who as soone as he vnderstoode it, sayde: This Crowe sweareth by heauen and earth, that if thou wilt, I shall receyue my oxen.

[Page 259] Mor. This kind of talke any mā may vse against a théefe.

386 Of a theeuish Partriche.

A Partriche sometime in the absence of an other bird, stale hir egs: who retur­ning to hir nest and séeing it robbed, was full heauy, she went about seeking so long till at length she found them and the théef, whereof she shewed the Iudge, who cited the théefe, and craftily examined him ther­of: He vtterly denied it, wherof the Iudge could giue no sentence for lack of witnesse, but the accuser sayd to him: thou oughtest to torment him till he confesse the truthe. Nay (quod the Iudge) thou shalt proue that thou sayest, that I may iudge therof right, or else I will martyr thée with him. Then she bicause no profe was made, was tor­mented, and the fellony enquired off. In the ende the théefe declared al, and many other theftes whiche he had committed, whereof the Iudge commaunded to hang him vp out of hand.

Mor. Who so accuseth any one, lette him first examin him self, whether he be [Page 260] of like faulte gyltie.

387 Of the Hauke and the Cuckoe.

THe Hauke sometime mocked the Cuc­koe, bicause that being as big bodied as hée, and in colour like him, for his faynte courage he did liue by wormes, and not by the swéete flesh of other birdes. Not long after, the Cuckoe espied the Hauke hang out of a high Toure, being caught in pur­suing Pigeons, to whom he sayde: Howe farre better hadde it bin to haue hunted wormes, than other mens birds?

Mor. Their life is safer, that being voyd of perill are content with their owne, thā those which by coueting other mens goods come in daunger.

388 Of a Grammarian teaching an Asse.

A Certein Grammarian boasted that he was so passing fine in his arte, that if Time. he might haue a sufficiēt reward, he would take vpō him to teach not only childrē, but also Asses. The Prince hearing of ye mans rashnesse asked him whither he thought he could teach an Asse within ten yeares, if he gaue him. 50. Crownes. The shamelesse [Page 261] man aunswered, that he would not refuse to be slayne of him, if in that space the Asse could not write and reade. His friendes hearing of this, maruelled & rebuked him, bicause he had promised to doe a thing, not only hard, but also impossible: & they did feare, least when the time had bin expired, he should be slayne of the King: whome he answered: Before this tyme be come out, either the Prince, the Asse or I will die.

Mor. Delay of time is cōmonly wont to be a helpe, for those whiche stande in daunger.

389 Of a man that would trie his friends.

THere was a certein man very riche and Trying of friends. liberal, which had many friends whom often times he hadde bid to supper, to the which willingly they came, and bicause he might ye better know, whither they would be trustie in time of néede, he assembled thē togither & told them that he had foes lately vpstart, which he meaned to destroy, pray­ing them therfore to arme themselues and come with him to reuēge his quarell: then euery one began to excuse him selfe sauing two, which he accounted for his friendes, & [Page 262] afterward loued them dearely, but the o­ther he reiected.

Mor. The best trier of friendes is ad­uersitie.

390 Of a yong man and an old.

A Certen old man espied a yong man ga­thering of his frute, whome he gently Trye all wayes. entreated to come downe from the trée, and not to purloyne his goods: but he spake to the winde, for he lightly regarded his age and his woords. Ah (quod the olde man) I haue hearde, that not onely in woordes, but also in herbes force consisteth, wherevpon he began to pluck the leaues and cast them at him. The yong man séeing him doe so, laughed out of measure, supposing that hée doted, to driue him downe with leaues. The olde man willing to assaye him by gentle meanes, when he perceyued that he coulde nothing preuayle, sayde: I will proue what stones will doo, for in them men saye, there is vertue: and forthwith filled his lap with stones which he caste at the yong mā, and perforce made him come downe and departe.

Mor. A wise man ought to assaye all [Page 263] manner ways, before he take any wea­pon in hande.

391 Of the Lyon and the Bull.

A Bull being afrayde of a Lyon, fledde Trouble. away, and by chaūce met with a Gote, who with frounting coūtenaunce threatned to strike him with his hornes, to whome the Bull full of wrath, sayd: It is not the knitting of thy browes feareth mée, but yt the fierce Lion is so néere at my héeles, thou shouldest féele what it were to medle with a Bull, and to renew his wounde.

Mor. To the sorowfull ought no more miserie be added, who that hath bin once in trouble, hath tasted sorowe i­nough.

392 Of a Larke,

A Certeine Larke by chaunce builded hir nest in a piece of wheat, that was som­what Trust in thy selfe. riper than other: whence hir yong ones were not able to flie when the corne was yellowe. As she was going foorth to séeke meats, she warned thē if any noueltie hapned to be done or sayd, to marke it wel, [Page 264] and at hir returne to certifie hir thereof, after hir departure, the owner of the corne came thither, and sayd to a yong man hys sonne: Séest not thou, that this corne is rype and néedeth labourers? to morrowe therfore by breake of the daye, goe to my friends, desire thē to helpe me in wt my har­nest: when he had so sayde, he departed. When the Larke returned to hir yong ones, they came fluttering about hir, and prayed hir out of hande to haste and carry them away: for the owner had sent to his friendes, willing them to come the nexte morning to reape his corne: She bad them be of good cheare and feare nothing, for if the Lorde of the ground haue remitted the matter to his friends, to morrowe it shall not be cut downe: The nexte day she flew abroade again for meate, the Lord wayted for his bidden friendes, the Sunne waxed hot, but nothing was done, neyther any friende of his came. Then sayde hée to his sonne, I sée well that these my friendes for the most part are loyterers, let vs therfore entreate our kinsfolks and neyghbours to morrowe betimes to come: hir Chickens were then afrayd and tolde it to their mo­ther: [Page 265] she bad them to leaue of feare & care, for none of alliaunce would be so obedient as to come at a becke, especially to labour, take you héed only, if ought be sayd agayn. The nexte morning she went abroade as before, his kinsfolks left the work vndone: The owner séeing that, sayd to his sonne: Adieu both friendes and Cousins, bring thou to morrowe at the breake of the daye two sickles, one for mée, another for thée, & we with our owne handes will reape it. When hir yong ones told hir this, she said: It is time to be packing, for that he sayde without doubte shall come to passe: for on him that ought it, the labour is turned, not where it was required: and thus the Lark shifted hir nest, and the corne was reaped. Hereof Ennius writeth these two Verses:

This sentence in thy minde,
beare thou in any wise:
Looke for no helpe of friends,
where thy helpe may suffise.

393 Of a Foxe taken.

A Foxe being taken in the snares of a Countryman, of whose Hens he hadde [Page 266] killed many, desired a Cock (of whom only he was séene) that he would eyther bring him a knife to cut the ginne, or else say no­thing to his maister till he had gnawne it a sunder with his téeth. The Cocke promi­sed both, went quickly to his maister & told him that the Foxe was fast in the snare, whome the Foxe espying to come with a club to kill him, sayd: Ah vnhappy wretch & foole that I am, which beléeued the Cocke would keepe my counsell, of whose wiues I haue killed so many.

Mor Neuer trust those, whome we haue greatly hurt.

394 Of an Asse.

A Certen poore man whiche had nothing but a barell of wine and an Asse, hadde Trusting mortall things. maried his only daughter to a certein yong man, promising him somewhat in franke mariage, which he thought to gather of his wine and the Asse (for he had determined to sell them) but the next night after that the bridall was kept, the Asse died, who as he was dying, brake ye vessell with his héeles, and spilt the wine.

[Page 267] Mor. We must put no trust in transi­torie things.

395 Of one that played the part of Christ.

A Certen Countryman playing the part of Christ in a playe, was beaten and e­uill Truthe hateth ie­sting. entreated of the Iewes, wherfore he flong away the crosse and sayd: The Deuil be your God, for I wil not. Then a Baker tooke his part, whome the Iewes likewise did handle opprobriously: whiche thing the pacient suffered: but another sayde to him, Meale stealer: then the Baker aunswe­red, hold thy tong, or else I wil ouerthrow thée with my crosse.

Mor. Truthe can abyde no gesting, neyther men that are giltie will wil­lingly heare of any iesting of their doo­ings.

396 Of the Harte.

A Harte beholding him selfe in a cleare Ʋayne desires. water, allowed muche his faire fore­head and broade hornes, but the smalnesse of his legs he condemned. As he was thus viewing and iudging, there came a Hūter vpō him: the Hart fled away very swiftly, [Page 268] the Dogs pursued him: but being entred into a thick wood, his horns were wrapped faste in the boughes: then he praysed his legs and dispraysed his hornes, which cau­sed him to be taken.

Mor. Things whiche do hurte we doe hunte after, but good things we despise, we wishe for blyssednesse before wée know where it is: Riches and promo­tion we séeke for, wherin we think that felicitie doth consiste, but in thē is much trauell and pensiuenesse.

397 Of a Countryman and Hercules.

A Countrymans Carte stucke faste in a déepe mire: straight way he besought helpe of Hercules. To him an answer was giuen: Thou dolt whip on thy horsse, & lift thou forward thy whéeles, and then call on Hercules, and he will be ready at hand.

Mor. Vayne requestes doo not auayle, which God wil not heare, helpe thy self, and then God will helpe forward.

398 Of a byting Dog.

A Certein man had a Dog whiche often Vainglory times had byt many, whervpon he tyed [Page 269] a clog on his necke, that men might take héede of him. The Dog supposing that to be giuen him for a commendation of his cou­rage, despised his companions: then one of them tolde him of his blindnesse, that he wore that clog with shame, and not with honour.

Mor. A vaynglorious foole sometyme counteth that to be his prayse, which is vtterly to his shame.

399 Of the Hog and the Horsse.

A Hog espied a barded Horse, which was set out to warfare well appointed, to Ʋaliaunt death. whom he sayd: Whether makest thou such hast, thou foole, perhaps thou shalt be slayn in battaile: The horsse aunswered him, though thou doe nothing worthy of prayse, but being fat liest wallowing in the myre, yet a little knyfe thy lyfe shall dispatche, where as great renoume after my deathe I haue.

Mor. It is better to die valiauntly, than to prolong thy life led wickedly.

400 Of the Swan and the Crowe.

THe Rauen enuied the Swanne for his Ʋndefiled lyfe. whitenesse, whome with all pollicie he [Page 270] endeuoured to defile and make black: and bicause he could not work his will whiles the Swan waked, he practised it when she slept. Wherefore he came in a night the Swanne sléeping on hir nest, and with his blacknesse polluted hir & made hir blacke. When day was vp and the Swanne awa­ked, she sawe hir selfe thus painted, she washed hir selfe continually, till she be­came faire.

Mor. Who so will be blissed, lette him kéepe him selfe vndefiled.

401 Of a Thrush.

A Thrush being caught with birdlyme of a Fouler, did torment hir selfe, say­ing: Ʋndoing him selfe. The pangs of death greeue me not so much, as that my owne things are my de­struction: for men saye, that birdlime is made of Thrushes doung.

Mor. Then are men most gréeued, whē their own doings do slay them.

402 Of the Lion and the Mouse.

A Lion sometime caught in a snare, was Ʋnequall mariage. so entangled, that he could not winde out him selfe, wherevpon he desired the [Page 271] Mouse to gnawe a sunder the ginne, pro­mising a recompence for his good turne. Which thing when the Mouse had quickly done, he required the Lion to giue him his daughter in mariage: the Lion (to requite his benefactor) graunted hir vnto him. When the new maried wife was come to hir Husbande, by chaunce not séeing him, trode on him, and burst him all to pieces.

Mor. All mariages and matches vne­qually made, are not to be allowed.

403 Of a Ryuer.

A Certeyne Ryuer checked hys head­spring, Vnthank­fulnesse. as being a standing water, ney­ther hauing any fishes, but him self he high­ly commended, bycause he bred goodly Fi­shes, and pleasauntly ranne throughe the valleys. The head spring fretting at the vnthankfulnesse of the Ryuer, ceased his wonted course, whereby the Riuer wan­ting bothe hys Fishes and hys pleasaunt noyse, dried vp.

Mor. Some claime as their owne, whatsoeuer they doe, robbing GOD of his honour, from whom al goodnesse doth procéede.

404 Of a Serpent.

A Serpent beyng ouerwhelmed with a A wise Ape. great stone, desired a man that trauail­led that way, to roll off the burden from hym, promising to gyue hym a great trea­sure if he would doo it. Whiche when the gentle fellow hadde done, the Serpent did not only breake his promisse, but also sayd the man was worthy to die. As they thus stroue, it happened that the Ape passed that way, who being chosen iudge betwéene them, sayde: I can not ende so great stryfe betwene you, excepte I sée firste howe the Serpent stood vnder the stone. When the man had layd the stone vpon the Serpent, he sayd: I thinke that vnthankfull beaste ought to remayne vnder the stone.

Mor. Vnthankfull men are worthy of no good turne.

405 Of a man that brake an Image.

A Certeyne man had a woodden Image, whom he prayed to bestow some bene­fite Wicked men. on him, but the more he prayed, the more he liued in pouertie: Where with he being angry, caught his Image by ye legs, and floong him agaynst a wall, where with [Page 273] his heade being broken, greate abundance of golde came out, whiche as he gathered, he sayd: thou art froward as I think, for whiles I did reuerence thée, thou didst mée no good, but when thou wast well beaten, thou hast yelded much riches.

Mor. A naughty man will doe muche more good by beating than by honoring him.

406 Of an Asse and a Rauen.

AN Asse hauing a galled back, fedde in a medow, on whom a Rauen did sit and picked at his sore, whereat the Asse brayed and skipped: The horskeeper standing a far off, laughed thereat, whome as a Wolfe passing by espied, he sayd: Alas, if we poore wretches should doe so much, we should be pursued: but at him they laugh.

Mor. Wicked men only peeping abroad are forthwith knowne.

407 Of a Dog.

A Certen rich man, much giuen to hun­ting, did kéepe many dogs, wherof one bit his sonne, that he dyed: Their maister béeing wroth, cōmaunded to slay not only the man killer, but also all the reste: then sayd one of them, one hath offended, but all [Page 274] are punished.

Mor The wickednesse of one, often hurteth many.

409 Of the Nourse and the Wolfe.

A Woman somtime had a chyld to nurse, whom she thretned to cast to the Wolf except he left his crying. It happened that the Wolfe passing that way, hearde what shée sayde: wherevpon being in good hope, he wayted still at the doore. The chylde at length béeing stilled, fell a sléepe, the Wolf returned fastyng into the couerte with a Flea in his eare. The shée Wolfe asked for his pray. Mary (quod he sighing) I was de­ceyued, a Nurse promised to cast me a boy that cryed, but she dyd not.

Mor. No credit is to be had in a womā.

410 Of a Woman that wept.

THere was a yong Woman whose hus­band lay at the poynt of death, whome with these words hir father comforted say­ing: Daughter, vexe not so much thy selfe, for I haue prouided thée a husband, much fayrer than he is, which shall soone driue a­way thy longing for this: but this woman would not harken to hir fathers talke, but blamed him for making mencion so hastily [Page 275] but when hir husband was dead, she asked hir father, wéeping, if the yong man were néere, which he sayd should be hir husband.

Mor. The loue which women haue to their husbands soone weareth away, af­ter they be dead.

411 Of a Woman beaten.

A Certeyne Woman sore beaten of hir husband, fained hir selfe deade, to make him afrayd, for shée hild hir breath, and lay with hir face vpward, not once stirring: This wise man knowing well the fetches of women, sayd: The deade beast must bée flayde, and he caught vp a knife, and began to flaye the skin from hir feete: shée percey­uing the ende of hir dissimulation, plucked back hir feete, and straightway arose.

Mor. Womens wyles are practised in vayne against wise men.

412 Of the Widow and the grene Asse.

A Certeyne Wydow being weary of lea­ding a single lyfe, desired too mary, but shée durst not, bycause shée feared the moc­king of the people, which reported euill of those that were twise maried: but hir god­mother shewed hir by this pollicie, howe lightly rumors are to be regaded: shée commanded [Page 276] hir to take the white Asse she had, and cause him to be paynted gréene, and thē to leade him through euery streate, which thing at the first sight was so wondred at, that not only children, but also old mē, mo­ued with this strange Wonder, followed the Asse, to behold him, which being dayly led through the citie, they ceased to wonder at. Then sayd hir godmother, the like shall happen to thée, for if thou mary, thou shalt for a few days be a byworde to the people, but within a while after, there shal not be a word spoken of it.

Mor. No thing is so wonderfull, that in continuance of time will not cease to be wondred at.

413 Of the hare and the Fox.

THe Hare iudged him selfe worthy to be preferred before the Foxe, bycause in Wisdome swift running hée far passed him: the Fox aunswered, I haue a more excellent wit, wherby I do oftner begyle the Dogs, than thou with thy swiftnesse.

Mor. Wisdom farre passeth strength or swiftnesse.



  • ¶ The firste Fable of the penance of the Wolfe, the Fox, & the Asse. fol. 1.
  • 2 Of the Spyder and the Goute. fol. 3.
  • 3 Of the Asse, the Trum­peter, and a Hare, the mes­sanger fol. 7.
  • 4 Of an olde man. eodem.
  • 5 Of a Shepherde and the Sea fol. 8.
  • 6 Of an Heremite and a Souldier fol. 9.
  • 7 Of the Fox & the Bram­ble eodem
  • 8 Of a Wagtayle & a Phe­saunt 10.
  • 9 Of the Myse and the Frogs eodem
  • 10 Of the Beastes and the Birdes 11
  • 11 Of the Pecocke and the Nyghtingale 12
  • 12 Of a yong mā that song at the buriall of his mo­ther 13
  • 13 Of Heuen & Earth. eod.
  • 14 Of a Lion in loue with a Countreymans daugh­ter 14
  • 15 Of a Gourde and a Pine tree. 15
  • 16 Of the Sunne and the Moone 16
  • 17 Of the Spyder and the Swallow. 18
  • 18 Of a Dog & a Wolf. eo.
  • 19 Of an Asse & a Fox. 19.
  • 20 Of the Egle & a Pie. 20
  • 21 Of a Nightyngale fea­ryng the Kyte. eodē.
  • 22 Of a Countryman that would passe ouer a Ry­uer. 21
  • 23 Of a Hart & a Vine. eo.
  • 24 Of a man bitten with a Dogge. 22
  • 25 Of an Asse that serued an vnkinde maister. eod.
  • 26 Of the Mouse that sette the Kyte at libertie 23.
  • 27 Of a Husbandmā pric­ked by a Bee. 24
  • 28 Of the tree Abrotanum and the Hare eodem.
  • 29 Of the Crowe and the Dog 25
  • 30 Of a Hunter and a Par­trich. eodem.
  • 31 Of the Dolphin and the Eele 26
  • 32 Of fayre Trees and de­formed, [Page] 27
  • 32 Of a Lyonesse and the Foxe. 28
  • 33 Of an Astronomer and a Prauailer. eodem
  • 34 Of Scholers. eodem
  • 35 A boaster 29
  • 36 Of a Boaster 30
  • 37 Of the Mole. eodem
  • 38 The birth of Hilles. 31
  • 39 Of the Frogge and the Foxe. eodem
  • 40 A Pecock spoyled of his feathers by a Souldier 32
  • 41 Of the Kydde and the Wolfe. eodem
  • 42 Of the Sunne and the Northeast winde. 33
  • 43 Of a Foxe and women eating of a Hen 34
  • 44 A Dog & Wolues, eodé
  • 45 The Peacocke and the Crane. 35
  • 46 Of a knight which had a brauling wyfe. eodem
  • 47 Of Arion & the Dol­phin. 36
  • 48 A Kid and a Wolf. 38
  • 49 The Crab and Fox. 39
  • 50 Of the Apple tree and the Pomegranate tree. co.
  • 51 Of a Dog and his may­ster. 40
  • 52 Of the Turtle. eodem
  • 53 Of a scolding womā 41
  • 54 Of two Haukes and a Quayle 42
  • 55 Of the Wolfe and the Crane eodem.
  • 56 Of the Fysher and the litle Fishe. 43
  • 57 Of a Foxe that woulde kill a Henne sitting. 44
  • 58 Of the Frogs and theyr Kyng eodem
  • 59 Of the Colyer and the Fuller. 46
  • 60 Of a Shepherd whiche kept a Wolf amongst his Dogges eodem
  • 61 Of the Rauen and the Wolues. 47
  • 62 Of the Father and his sonnes codem
  • 63 Bulles and a Lyon 48
  • 64 Of a Lyon which beg­ged of the Wolfe parte of of his pray. 49
  • 65 Of a Snayle. 50
  • 66 Of the Dooue and the Kyte codem
  • 67 A Husbandman 51
  • [Page] 68 Of the Hare and the Foxe. 52
  • 69 Of the Elme and the Osiar eodem.
  • 70 Of the Serpent and the Crab. 53
  • 71 Of the Harte and the Wolfe 54
  • 72 Of a feller of Wood. eo.
  • 73 Of the Cocke and the Foxe. 56
  • 74 Of a Deceyuer. 57
  • 75 Of a Foxe caughte by a Dog, whyles she fayned hir selfe dead. 58
  • 76 Of a Boy & a thefe. 59.
  • 77 Of the Thrushe eodem
  • 81 Of the Ayre and the Wynde 60
  • 82 Of a Trauayler. eodem
  • 83 Of a womā & a Hen. 61
  • 84 Of a couetous mā eod.
  • 85 Of the Chough and the Doues 62
  • 86 Of the Dogge and the shadow. 63
  • 87 Of a couetous Ambas­sadour 64
  • 89 Of a couetous man dy­ing 65
  • 90 Of a Rauen taken by Dogs eodem.
  • 91 Of a Gote & a dog. 66
  • 92 Of a couetous man that eate withered Aples. co.
  • 93 Of a lester and a Bis­shop 67
  • 94 Of a Priest which bu­ried his Dog. 68
  • 95 Of a Shepherd that en­couraged hys flocke a­geinst the Wolfe. 69
  • 96 Of a Fisher and fiue Fishes 70
  • 97 Of the Owle. 71
  • 98 Of a Foxe. 73
  • 99 Of the Lyon and the Goate eodem
  • 100 Of a Foxe taken by a Countryman 74
  • 101 Of a Womā that wold die for hir husbād. eodē.
  • 102 Of a Lyon being old, Folio 75
  • 103 Of an Eagle and a Co­me. 76
  • 104 Of the Hares and the Frogs. 77
  • 105 Of the Bee and Iupi­ter. 78
  • 106 Of a Harte and a Ly­on 79
  • [Page] 107 Of the town dogs. 78.
  • 108 Of two Pots. 80
  • 106 Of the Swan singyng at the point of deth. eo.
  • 110 Of an olde man which set Trees 81
  • 111 Of the Phesant and the Pecocke. eodem.
  • 112 Of the Ape and the Brocke 83
  • 113 Of the Dogge and the Cocke 84
  • 114 Of the Foxe and the Storke eodem
  • 115 Of a Frier, a Layeman, and a Wolfe 85
  • 116 Of a Parat. 86
  • 117 Of an Asse. 87
  • 118 Of Waxe that desyred hardnesse. eodem
  • 119 Of a Pacient and a phi­sitian. 88
  • 120 Of an Asse carying an Image. eodem.
  • 121 Of a Fysher. 89
  • 122 Of the Belly and other members. eodem
  • 123 Of the Frogge and the Crabbe. 90
  • 124 Of a Leoparde and an Vnicorn, fighting with a Dragon. 91
  • 125 Of the enuious Dogge and the Oxe. 92
  • 126 Of a yong man. eodē
  • 127 Of a countryman and Peares. 93
  • 128 Of a man that refused Clysters. eodem
  • 129 A Deceyuer. 94
  • 130 A Cat & Myse. 95
  • 131 Of the Wolfe and the Sheepe codem.
  • 132 Of the sick Asse. 96
  • 133 Of a Foxe. eodem
  • 134 A man that would kil a Hog. 97
  • 135 Of the Egle that cited all manner of Birds. 98
  • 136 The Satyre and the Wayfaringman. 99
  • 137 Of a tyrannous Gryf­fon. eodem.
  • 138 The Pye and the Cuc­koe. 100
  • 139 A Serpent. 101
  • 140 The rule of womē o­uer their husbands. eod.
  • 141 Of a Woman. 102
  • 142 The Bore & the Coū ­tryman. 103
  • 143 Of a Gnat. 104
  • [Page] 144 A norisher of bees. eo.
  • 145 Many creeping Wor­mes and Beasts. 105
  • 146 The bird called Kings Fisher. 106
  • 147 The Apes and the Li­bard. 107
  • 148 The Henne and the Foxe 108
  • 149 Two enimies. eodem.
  • 150 The Crowe and the Rauen eodem
  • 151 The Wolf & Fox. 109
  • 152 The Couetous man & the Enuious. 110
  • 153 The Wolfe and the Asse. 111
  • 154 The Lyon and the Wolfe eodem
  • 155 The Hart & Oxen. 112
  • 156 The Cocke and the Catte 113
  • 157 The Countryman and the Serpent. 114
  • 158 A Seruant which caste his maysters Asse from a Rocke 115
  • 159 The Bat, the Bramble, & the Cormorant. 116.
  • 160 Of a Worme. 117
  • 161 A Dogge and a But­cher. 117
  • 162 Of Cockles 117
  • 163 The Asse & Foxe. 118
  • 164 The Dogge and the Asse eodem
  • 165 The Dogge and the Sheepe. 119
  • 166 Of an Asse. 120
  • 167 A wicked man and the Druell. 121
  • 168 Of a Camell. eodem
  • 169 The Fox & Lion. 122.
  • 170 Of a Hind calfe, eod
  • 171 The Lyō & Frog. 123
  • 172 The Eagle. eodem
  • 173 Of a Dog fearyng the Rayne. eodem.
  • 174 Of a Cocke 124
  • 175 A sick man and a phy­sitian eodem
  • 176 The Rauen and the Foxe 125
  • 177 A man and hys twoo vvyues 126
  • 178 Of a Souldier. 127
  • 179 Of Trauailers. eodem.
  • 181 A Lion & a Beare. 128
  • 182 A ryche man and hys Seruaunt. eodem.
  • 183 Of a vvoman that bet hir Husband. 129
  • [Page] 184 Of Fishers. 130
  • 185 A Ryche man and a poore 131
  • 186 A Physitian 132
  • 187 The Countryman and the Mouse 133
  • 188 Lyon and the Hog. eo.
  • 189 The Dog that deuou­red the Sheepe 134
  • 190 Of the Larke. 135
  • 191 The wyld Asse. codem
  • 192 Theef & the Dog. 136
  • 193 The Woodde and the Countryman. codem
  • 194 The Countrymā and a counseller 137
  • 195 Of Iupiter. codem
  • 195 Of Flyes. 138
  • 196 Landbirds and Water­foules codem.
  • 197 The Egle and the Ra­uen 139
  • 198 Two yong men. 140
  • 199 Of Money. codem.
  • 200 The Thorne and the wilde Gote. 141
  • 201 Of the Goate and the Vine. 142
  • 202 Of the Ant. codem.
  • 203 A Gardiner. 143
  • 204 Of Myte that woulde hang a Bell about a Care neck. codem
  • 205 Of Fishers 144
  • 206 The Tygre and the Foxe 145
  • 207 The Woolfe and the Sowe codem.
  • 208 A Catte. 146
  • 209 A man that wold trye his wiues mynde. codē.
  • 210 The Cocke & the Ca­pon 147
  • 211 The Fouler and the Larke codem
  • 212 Of a Goose 148
  • 213 A woman and hir Lo­uer codem
  • 214 A Serpent and a Hus­bandman 149
  • 215 A man and a woman twice maryed. codem
  • 216 A Wolfe & Dogs. 150
  • 217 The Countryman and the Horse. 151
  • 218 A Foxe that fell into a Well 152
  • 219 The Pyg and his Fa­thers will codem.
  • 220 The Cockatrice and Sea wolfe. 153
  • 221 The wolf & Dog. cod.
  • [Page] 222 A Linnet. 155
  • 223 A Mule. codem
  • 224 A King and Apes. 156
  • 225 Of Oxen. 157
  • 226 A Hogge. codem.
  • 227 A man which hidde a treasure 158
  • 228 The Pygarde and the Egle. codem
  • 229 The Dogge and the Cooke 159
  • 230 A man stoned codem
  • 231 A Shepe crying. 160
  • 232 The Rauen and the Serpent codem
  • 233 A poore man 161
  • 234 A learned man not esteemed 162
  • 235 A Physitian 163
  • 236 Of Doggs. codem
  • 237 Of a Sheepe wastyng Corne. 164
  • 238 Of the Owle and the Larke. 165
  • 239 The Reede. cod.
  • 240 The Eele 166
  • 241 Of the Crow and the Sheepe. codem
  • 242 The Ape & Fox 167
  • 243 The Frogges and the Sunne codem
  • 244 A Wolfe fallen into a pitte 168
  • 245 Two Hoggs. cod.
  • 246 A wolfe that put on a Sheeps skinne. 169
  • 247 The Elephant. codem
  • 248 Of an Asse 170
  • 249 A Countreyman and Bees. 171
  • 250 A Husbandman and a Poet. codem
  • 251 A rich man vnlearned, and a poore man lear­ned 172
  • 252 A Parat. 173
  • 253 Of the Pyke and the Tenche codem
  • 254 A Mermayde and a Leachour 174
  • 255 A realous man. 175
  • 256 Of a Liberall mā. 176
  • 257 A couetous man. cod.
  • 258 Of the Dogge and the Lyon 177
  • 259 Lynet & the Boy. 178
  • 260 Fox & Crocodil. cod.
  • 261 The Shepherd and the Husbandmen. 179
  • 262 Of Mercurius cod.
  • 263 Of an olde Man and his Sonne 180
  • [Page] 264 The Faulcon and the Cocke codem
  • 265 Of the Camell. 181
  • 266 The Asse, the Ape, and the Mole 182
  • 267 The Snaile and Frog­ges. codem
  • 268 Of a riche man. 183
  • 269 The Nightingale and the Hauke codem
  • 270 A madde man 184
  • 271 A priest & his boy. co.
  • 272 Of a Foxe 185
  • 273 Of an Asse 186
  • 274 A yong man. codem.
  • 275 Of Iupiter 187
  • 276 The Foxe & the Wea­syll codem
  • 277 Of an Apple tree. 188
  • 278 The Fly & Ante. 189.
  • 279 A Husbandeman and his Dog. 190
  • 280 The Lampurne & the Crocodile codem.
  • 281 A Liō & a Mouse. 191
  • 282 The Woolfe and the Lambe 193
  • 283 Of the Hares and the Frogs 194
  • 284 Of a Swanne. codem.
  • 285 Of a Moore 195
  • 286 A horsman and a hus­bandman codem
  • 287 A mā & his dog. 196
  • 288 Of a Foxe codem.
  • 289 Of Foure footed Bea­stes 197
  • 290 A Souldiour and his Horse codem
  • 291 The Kydde and the Wolfe 198
  • 292 A Chicken caught by a Kyght odem
  • 293 A Philosopher. 199
  • 294 The Foxe and the E­gle. codem
  • 295 Of an Oliue tree. 200
  • 296 The Mouse and the Catte 201
  • 297 The Kyghte and the Hauke codem
  • 298 Of Cockes and a Par­triche. 202
  • 299 Of the Sowe and the Dogge 203
  • 300 A Lamb & a wolf. co.
  • 301 Of a Flye. codem
  • 302 A wolf & a Lion. 204
  • 303 The Ape and his two sonnes codem
  • 304 An olde man that ca­ryed an Asse 205
  • [Page] 305 A sumptuous feaste of the Lyon 207
  • 306 The Plantine and the Ape codem
  • 307 The Firre tree and the Bushe. 208
  • 308 Of the Sowe and the Bitche 209
  • 309 The Doggs and the Asse codem.
  • 310 Of a Camell and Iu­piter. 210
  • 311 Of an Oxe. 211
  • 312 The Weasill and the Myse codem.
  • 313 The Crowe and the Pitcher 212
  • 314 The Lyon & Fox. cod.
  • 315 Of the Wolfe beeing hungrie 213
  • 316 Of the Horse and the Harte. codem
  • 317 Of Geese 214
  • 318 The Ape and his yong ones 215
  • 319 Of Maryners. codem.
  • 320 Of the Owle. 216
  • 321 A Foxe & a Dog. codē.
  • 322 The Wolfe and Por­kupine 217
  • 323 Of an olde man lothe to dye codem
  • 324 Of a Dog brought vp to Hunting 218
  • 325 Of a man which pluc­ked vp a Hedge 219
  • 326 The Asse and the Ly­on 220
  • 327 Of Cocks. 221
  • 328 Of the Horse and the Asse. codem
  • 329 Of a Crane 222
  • 330 Iupiter and the Ra­uen 223
  • 331 The Flea & a Lion. co.
  • 332 The Peacocke and the Chough. 224
  • 333 A man & his Dog. cod.
  • 333 A Heardman. 225
  • 334 The Lyon and the Foxe. 226
  • 335 A man created Cardi­nall 227
  • 336 The Fox & Gote. 228
  • 337 The Field Mise 229
  • 338 Of a Flea. codem
  • 339 The Sheepe and the Shepherd 230
  • 340 Of Frogs codem.
  • 341 A Fisher. 231
  • 342 The Ape & Fox. cod.
  • 343 Of a Doue 232
  • [Page] 344 The Currier and the Hunter. eodem
  • 345 The Beauer. 234
  • 346 The Houpe. eodem.
  • 347 The Beame eodem
  • 349 Of the Lyon, the Bore, and the Rauens 235
  • 350 A Wolfe. eodem
  • 351 Of a Beare 236
  • 352 A simple Countrey­man eodem
  • 353 The Eagle and the Dorre 237
  • 354 The Storke and the Swallow 238
  • 355 The town Mouse and the Coūtry Mouse. 239
  • 356 Of the Mule and the Horse. 241
  • 357 Of a Deuill. 242
  • 358 The Birds. 243
  • 360 Of an Oxe and a Bul­locke. eodem
  • 361 Of Birdes. 244
  • 362 A wicked Man. eod.
  • 363 A Boye that woulde not learne. 245
  • 364 The Doue and the Crowe 246
  • 365 Of the Asse and the Calfe. eodem
  • 366 The Bat and the Wea­syll. 247
  • 367 The Fox and Cat. eod.
  • 368 The Marchaunt and the Ievve. 248
  • 369 A Carter. 249
  • 370 An olde Women. eod.
  • 371 The Nightingale and the Rauen 250
  • 372 Of the Doue and the Pye. 251
  • 373 Asse and Frogs. eod.
  • 374 The Pellican 252
  • 375 Of the Smyth and his Dogge. eodem
  • 376 Of the Bull and the Mouse. 253
  • 377 A Weasyll eod.
  • 378 Of Hares. 254
  • 379 The Ram & Bull. eod.
  • 380 The Quayle and the Larke. 255
  • 381 The Nut tree, the Asse, and the Woman. eodem.
  • 382 Beare and the Bee. 256
  • 383 Sow and the Dog. eod.
  • 384 The Boy and his Mo­ther. 257
  • 385 Of Mercurius and Ty­resias. 258
  • 386 Theuish Partrich. 259
  • [Page] 387 Of the Hauke and the Cuckoe. 260
  • 388 A Grammarian tea­ching an Asse. eodem.
  • 389 A man that would try his friends. 261
  • 390 Of a yong man and an olde. 262
  • 391 A Lyon and a Bul. 263
  • 392 A Larke. eodem
  • 393 A Foxe taken 265
  • 394 Of an Asse. 266
  • 395 One that played the part of Christ. 267
  • 396 The Harte. eod.
  • 397 The Countryman and Hercules. 368
  • 398 The byting Dog. eod.
  • 399 Of the Hogge and the Horsse. 269
  • 400 Of the Swan and the Crowe. 270
  • 401 The Thrushe. eodem.
  • 402 Of the Lyon and the Mouse. eodem.
  • 403 Of a Ryuer. 271
  • 404 The Serpent. 272
  • 405 A man that brake an Image. eodem.
  • 406 An Asse & Rauē. 273
  • 407 Of a Dog. eod.
  • 408 The Nourse and the Wolfe. 274
  • 409 Of a woman that did weepe. eodem.
  • 410 Of a woman beaten. folio. 275
  • 411 The Wydowe and the greene Asse. eod.
  • 412 The Hare & Fox. 276

¶ Imprinted at London by Henry Bynneman, dwelling in Knight-ryder stréete, at the signe of the Marmayde. Anno Domini. 1569. CVM PRIVILEGIO.


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