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Aesop's Fables: Caxton (1484)

2.11. Of the herte / of the sheep & of the wulf
(Perry 477)

The thyng which is promysed by force & for drede is not to be hold / wherof esope reherceth suche a fable of a hert which in the presence of a wulf demaunded of a sheep that she shold paye a busshel of corn / And the wulf commaunded to the sheep to paye hit / And whanne the day of payment was come / the herte came and demaunded of the sheep his corn And the sheep sayd to hym / the couenaunces and pactyons made by drede and force oughte not to be holden / For it was force to me beynge to fore the wulf to promytte & graunte to gyue to the that whiche thow neuer lenest to me / And ther for thow shalt haue ryght nought of me /
Wherfore somtyme it is good to make promesse of some thynge for to eschewe gretter dommage of losse / For the thynges whiche are done by force haue none fydelyte

Caxton published his edition of Aesop's fables in 1484. There are modern reprints by Joseph Jacobs (D. Nutt: London, 1889) and more recently by Robert Lenaghan (Harvard University Press: Cambridge, 1967). Lenaghan's edition is available at amazon.com.