The Woman and Her Hen

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The Woman and Her Hen
by Aesop

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

A WOMAN AND A FAT HEN

A good Woman had a Hen that laid her every day an Egg. Now she fansy’d to her self, that upon a larger Allowance of Corn, this Hen might be brought in time to lay twice a day. She try’d the Experiment; but the Hen grew fat upon’t, and gave quite over laying.

THE MORAL. He that has a great deal already, and would have more, will never think that he has enough till he has all; and that’s impossible: wherefore we should set Bounds to our Desires, and content our selves when we are well, for fear of losing what we had.

Townsend's translation (1887)[edit]

The Woman and Her Hen

A Woman possessed a Hen that gave her an egg every day. She often pondered how she might obtain two eggs daily instead of one, and at last, to gain her purpose, determined to give the Hen a double allowance of barley. From that day the Hen became fat and sleek, and never once laid another egg.