<< Home Page | Caxton Index

Aesop's Fables: Caxton (1484)

4.20. Of the tree and of the reed /
(Perry 70)

None ought to be prowd ageynst his lord / but oughte to humble hym self toward hym / As this fable reherceth to vs of a grete tre / whiche wold neuer bowe hym for none wynd / And a reed whiche was at his foote bowed hym self as moche as the wynd wold / And the tree sayd to hym / why dost thow not abyde stylle as I doo / And the reed ansuerd / I haue not the myght whiche thow hast / And the tree sayd to the reed prowdly / than haue I more strengthe / than thow / And anone after came a grete wynde / whiche threw doune to the ground the sayd grete tree / and the reed abode in his owne beynge /
For the prowde shall be allwey humbled And the meke and humble shalle be enhaunced / For the roote of alle vertue is obedyence and humylyte

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.