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


A poor innocent Stork had the ill Hap to be taken in a Net that was laid for Geese and Cranes. The Stork’s Plea for herself was Simplicity and Piety: The Love she bare to Mankind, and the Service she did in picking up venomous Creatures. This is all true, says the Husbandman; but they that keep ill Company, if they be catch’d with ill Company, must expect to suffer with ill Company.
THE MORAL. ‘Tis as much as a Man’s Life, Fortune, and Reputation are worth, to keep good Company (over and above the Contagion of leud Examples;) for as Birds of a Feather will flock together, so if the good and bad be taken together, they must expect to go the Way of all Flesh together.

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.