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Aesop's Fables: Sir Roger L'Estrange (1692)

166. A BEE- MASTER (Perry 72)

There came a Thief into a Bee-Garden in the absence of the Master, and Robb'd the hives. The Owner discover'd it upon his Return, and stood Pausing a while to Bethink himself how this should come to pass. The Bees in this interim came Laden home out of the Fields from Feeding, and missing their Combs, they fell Powdering down in Swarms upon their Master. Well (says he) you are a Company of Senseless and Ungrateful Wretches, to let a Stranger go away Quietly that has Rifled ye, and to bend all your Spite against your Master, that is at this Instant beating his Brains how he may Repair and Preserve ye.
THE MORAL. 'Tis the Course of the World for People to take their Friends for their Foes, and to use them accordingly.

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.