Aesop's Fables: Sir Roger L'Estrange (1692)
129. A FOX AND GRAPES (Perry 15)
There was a Time when a Fox would have ventur’d as far for a Bunch of
Grapes as for a Shoulder of Mutton; and it was a Fox of those Days, and
that Palate, that stood gaping under a Vine, and licking his Lips at a
most delicious Cluster of Grapes that he had spy’d out there; he fetch’d
a hundred and a hundred Leaps at it, till at last, when he was as weary
as a Dog, and found that there was no Good to be done; Hang ‘em (says
he) they are as sour as Crabs; and so away he went, turning off the Disappointment
with a Jest.
THE MORAL OF THE TWO FABLES ABOVE. ‘Tis Matter of Skill and Address,
when a Man cannot honestly compass what he would be at, to appear easy
and indifferent upon all Repulses and Disappointments.
L'Estrange originally published his version of the fables in 1692. There is a
very nice illustrated edition in the Children's Classics series by Knopf: Sir
Roger L'Estrange. Aesop
- Fables which is available at amazon.com.