Might makes right.
THE MAN AND THE SATYR
A Man and a Satyr became friends, and determined to live together. All went well for a while, until one day in winter-time the Satyr saw the Man blowing on his hands. “Why do you do that?” he asked. “To warm my hands,” said the Man. That same day, when they sat down to supper together, they each had a steaming hot bowl of porridge, and the Man raised his bowl to his mouth and blew on it. “Why do you do that?” asked the Satyr. “To cool my porridge,” said the Man. The Satyr got up from the table. “Good-bye,” said he, “I’m going: I can’t be friends with a man who blows hot and cold with the same breath.”
A certain man made a wooden Image of Mercury, and exposed it for sale in the market. As no one offered to buy it, however, he thought he would try to attract a purchaser by proclaiming the virtues of the Image. So he cried up and down the market, “A god for sale! a god for sale! One who’ll bring you luck and keep you lucky!” Presently one of the bystanders stopped him and said, “If your god is all you make him out to be, how is it you don’t keep him and make the most of him yourself?” “I’ll tell you why,” replied he; “he brings gain, it is true, but he takes his time about it; whereas I want money at once.”
THE EAGLE AND THE ARROW
An Eagle sat perched on a lofty rock, keeping a sharp look-out for prey. A huntsman, concealed in a cleft of the mountain and on the watch for game, spied him there and shot an Arrow at him. The shaft struck him full in the breast and pierced him through and through. As he lay in the agonies of death, he turned his eyes upon the Arrow. “Ah! cruel fate!” he cried, “that I should perish thus: but oh! fate more cruel still, that the Arrow which kills me should be winged with an Eagle’s feathers!”
THE RICH MAN AND THE TANNER
A Rich Man took up his residence next door to a Tanner, and found the smell of the tan-yard so extremely unpleasant that he told him he must go. The Tanner delayed his departure, and the Rich Man had to speak to him several times about it; and every time the Tanner said he was making arrangements to move very shortly. This went on for some time, till at last the Rich Man got so used to the smell that he ceased to mind it, and troubled the Tanner with his objections no more.
THE WOLF, THE MOTHER, AND HER CHILD
A hungry Wolf was prowling about in search of food. By and by, attracted by the cries of a Child, he came to a cottage. As he crouched beneath the window, he heard the Mother say to the Child, “Stop crying, do! or I’ll throw you to the Wolf.” Thinking she really meant what she said, he waited there a long time in the expectation of satisfying his hunger. In the evening he heard the Mother fondling her Child and saying, “If the naughty Wolf comes, he shan’t get my little one: Daddy will kill him.” The Wolf got up in much disgust and walked away: “As for the people in that house,” said he to himself, “you can’t believe a word they say.”