The Talking Beasts eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 288 pages of information about The Talking Beasts.

The Boy and the Wolf

A mischievous Lad, who was set to mind some Sheep, often used, in jest, to cry “Wolf!  Wolf!” and when the people at work in the neighbouring fields came running to the spot he would laugh at them for their pains.

One day the beast came in reality, and the Boy, this time, called “Wolf!  Wolf!” in earnest; but the men, having been so often deceived, disregarded his cries, and he and his Sheep were left at the mercy of the Wolf.

The Blackamoor

A certain Man who had bought a Blackamoor said he was convinced that it was all nonsense about black being the natural colour of his skin.  “He has been dirty in his habits,” said he, “and neglected by his former masters.  Bring me some hot water, soap, and scrubbing-brushes, and a little sand, and we shall soon see what his colour is.”

So he scrubbed, and his servants scrubbed till they were all tired.  They made no difference in the colour of the Blackamoor; but the end of it all was that the poor fellow caught cold and died.

The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

A Wolf, wrapping himself in the skin of a Sheep, by that means got admission into a sheepfold, where he devoured several of the young Lambs.  The Shepherd, however, soon found him out and hung him up to a tree, still in his assumed disguise.

Some other Shepherds, passing that way, thought it was a sheep hanging and cried to their friend:  “What, brother! is that the way you serve Sheep in this part of the country?”

“No, friends,” cried he, giving at the same time the carcass a swing around, so that they might see what it was; “but it is the way to serve Wolves, even though they be dressed in Sheep’s clothing.”

The Two Travellers

As two men were travelling through a wood, one of them took up an axe which he saw lying upon the ground.  “Look here,” said he to his companion, “I have found an axe.”

“Don’t say, ‘I have found it,’” said the other, “but ’We have found it.’  As we are companions, we ought to share it between us.”  The first would not agree to this idea, however.

They had not gone far when they heard the owner of the axe calling after them in a great passion.  “We are in for it!” cried he who had the axe.

“Nay,” answered the other, “say ’I’m in for it!’—­not we.  You would not let me share the prize, and I am not going to share the danger.”

The Fox in the Well

An unlucky Fox, having fallen into a well, was able, by dint of great efforts, just to keep his head above water.

While he was struggling there and sticking his claws into the side of the Well, a Wolf came and looked in.  “What! my dear brother,” cried he, with affected concern, “can it really be you that I see down there?  How cold you must feel!  How long have you been in the water?  How came you to fall in?  I am so pained to see you.  Do tell me all about it!”

Project Gutenberg
The Talking Beasts from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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