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

183. A DAW WITH A STRING AT'S FOOT (Perry 131)

A Country Fellow took a Daw, and ty'd a String to his Leg, and so gave him to a little Boy to Play withal. The Daw did not much like his Companion, and upon the first Opportunity gave him the Slip, and away into the Woods again, where he was Shackled and Starv'd. When he came to Die, he Reflected upon the Folly of exposing his Life in the Woods, rather than Live in an easy Servitude among Men.
THE MORAL. 'Tis Fancy, not the Reason of Things, that makes Life so Uneasie to us as we find it. 'Tis not the Place, nor the Condition; but the Mind alone that can make any Body Miserable or Happy.

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.