Page:Fables of Aesop and other eminent mythologists.djvu/234

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below the Dignity of a Lyon to Kill the Poor Creature, but This, however may be ſaid in Plea for't, that he was aſham'd to leave behind him a Witneſs of his Weakneſs.


Fab. CCIII

An Ant and a Pigeon

AN Ant drop Unluckily into the Water as ſhe was Drinking at the Side of a Brook. A Wood-Pigeon took Pity of her, and threw her a little Bough to lay hold on. The Ant ſav'd her ſelf by that Bough, and in That very Inſtant, ſpies a Fellow with a Birding-Piece, making a Shoot at The Pigeon. Upon This Diſcovery, ſhe preſently runs up to him and Stings him. The Fowler ſtarts, and breaks his Aim, and away flies the Pigeon.

The  Moral

All Creatures have a Senʃe of Good oƒƒices, and Providence it ʃelƒ takes Care, where Other Means ƒail, that they may not Paʃs Unrewarded.

Reflexion

The Practice of Requiting Good Offices is a Great Encouagement to the Doing of them; and in truth, without Gratitude there would be Little Good Nature; for ther is not One Good Man in the World that has not need of Another. This Fable of the Ant is not All-together a Fiction, for we have many Inſtances of the Force of Kindneſs; even upon Animals and Inſects: To paſs over the Tradition of Androdus's Lyon, the Gratitude of Elephants, Dogs and Horſes is too Notorious to be Deny'd. Are not Hawks brought to the Hand, and to the Lure? And in like manner, are not Lyons, Tygers, Bears, Wolves, Foxes, and other Beaſts of Prey Reclaim'd by Good Uſage? Nay, I have ſeen a Tame Spider, and 'tis a Common Thing to have a Lizzard come to Hand. Man only is the Creature, that to his Shame, no Benefits can Oblige, no nor Secure, even from ſeeking the Ruine of his Benefactor: So that This Pismire ſets us a Leſſon here in her Thankfulneſs to her Preſerver.