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Aesop's Fables (Joseph Jacobs)

Jacobs 47. The Tortoise and the Birds (Perry 490)

A Tortoise desired to change its place of residence, so he asked an Eagle to carry him to his new home, promising her a rich reward for her trouble. The Eagle agreed and seizing the Tortoise by the shell with her talons soared aloft. On their way they met a Crow, who said to the Eagle: "Tortoise is good eating." "The shell is too hard," said the Eagle in reply. "The rocks will soon crack the shell," was the Crow's answer; and the Eagle, taking the hint, let fall the Tortoise on a sharp rock, and the two birds made a hearty meal of the Tortoise.

Never soar aloft on an enemy's pinions.


The Fables of Aesop, by Joseph Jacobs with illustrations by Richard Heighway (1894). The page images come from Google Books. The digitized text comes from Project Gutenberg. You can purchase this inexpensive Dover edition, The Fables of Aesop by Joseph Jacobs from amazon.com.