The Talking Beasts eBook

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

So the Crabs followed him with pleasure.  On the way the Fox told them all sorts of delightful things, and cheered them on most heartily.  Having thus gone some distance, they reached a plain, where the Fox came to a stand, and made a low moan in the direction of an adjacent wood.  Instantly a number of foxes came out of the wood and joined their kinsman, and all of them at once set about hunting the poor Crabs, who fled in all directions for their lives, but were soon caught and devoured.

When the banquet was over, the Foxes said to their friend:  “How great thy skill and cunning!”

The heartless villain replied, with a wink:  “My friends, There is cunning in cunning.”

The Camel and the Pig

A Camel said:  “Nothing like being tall!  Look how tall I am!”

A Pig, who heard these words, said:  “Nothing like being short!  Look how short I am!”

The Camel said:  “Well, if I fail to prove the truth of what I said, I shall give up my hump.”

The Pig said:  “If I fail to prove the truth of what I have said, I shall give up my snout.”

“Agreed!” said the Camel.

“Just so!” said the Pig.

They came to a garden, enclosed by a low wall without any opening.  The Camel stood on this side the wall, and reaching the plants within by means of his long neck made a breakfast on them.  Then he turned jeeringly to the Pig, who had been standing at the bottom of the wall without even a look at the good things in the garden, and said:  “Now, would you be tall, or short?”

Next they came to a garden, enclosed by a high wall, with a wicket gate at one end.  The Pig entered by the gate and, after having eaten his fill of the vegetables within, came out, laughing at the poor Camel, who had had to stay outside, because he was too tall to enter the garden by the gate, and said:  “Now, would you be tall, or short?”

Then they thought the matter over, and came to the conclusion that the Camel should keep his hump and the Pig his snout, observing:  “Tall is good, where tall would do; if short, again, ’tis also true!


“He who is not possessed of such a book as will dispel many doubts, point out hidden treasures, and is, as it were, a mirror of all things, is even an ignorant man.”


Father “Lime-stick” and the Flower-pecker

Old Father Lime-stick once limed a tree for birds and caught a Flower-pecker.  He was just about to kill and eat it when the bird cried out, “O Grandfather, surely you are not going to eat me?  Why, flesh, feathers and all, I am no bigger than your thumb!” “What!” said the old man; “do you expect me then to let you go?” “Yes,” said the bird, “only let me go, and I will fetch you such a talisman as never was—­a Bezoar-stone as big as a cocoanut and worth at least a thousand.”  Said the old man, “Do you really mean it?” “Really, I do,” replied the bird.  “Just let me go, and I’ll bring it to you.”  Then, on being released, he flew off and perched on a tree, and began to preen his feathers, to get rid of the bird-lime.

Project Gutenberg
The Talking Beasts from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
Follow Us on Facebook