The Astronomer

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The Astronomer
by Aesop

L'Estrange's translation (1692)[edit]

AN ASTROLOGER AND A TRAVELER

A certain Star-gazer had the Fortune, in the very height of his celestial Observations, to stumble into a Ditch; a sober fellow passing by, gave him a piece of wholesome Counsel. Friend, says he, make a right Use of your present Misfortunes; and pray, for the future, let the Stars go on quietly in their Courses, and do you look a little better to the Ditches.

THE MORAL OF THE THREE FABLES ABOVE. There needs be more than Impudence and Ignorance, on the one side, and a superstitious Credulity on the other, to the setting up of a Fortune-teller.

Townsend's translation (1887)[edit]

The Astronomer

An astronomer used to go out at night to observe the stars. One evening, as he wandered through the suburbs with his whole attention fixed on the sky, he fell accidentally into a deep well. While he lamented and bewailed his sores and bruises, and cried loudly for help, a neighbor ran to the well, and learning what had happened said: "Hark ye, old fellow, why, in striving to pry into what is in heaven, do you not manage to see what is on earth?"