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The Lion and Other Beasts

Fables

Aesop

The Bull, and several other beasts, were ambitious of the honour of hunting with the Lion. His savage Majesty graciously condescended to their desire; and it was agreed that they should have an equal share in whatever might be taken. They scour the forest, are unanimous in the pursuit, and, after a long chase, pull down a noble stag. It was divided with great dexterity by the Bull into four equal parts; but just as he was going to secure his share—"Hold!" says the Lion, "let no one presume to help himself till he hath heard our just and reasonable claims. I seize upon the first quarter by virtue of my prerogative; the second I claim as due to my superior conduct and courage; I cannot forego the third, on account of the necessities of my den; and if anyone is inclined to dispute my right to the fourth, let him speak." Awed by the majesty of his frown, and the terror of his paws, they silently withdrew, resolving never to hunt again but with their equals.

MORAL.

Be certain that those who have great power are honest before you place yourselves in their hands, or you will be deprived of your just rights.

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