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

75. A BOY AND FALSE ALARMS (Perry 210)

A Shepherd’s Boy had gotten a roguy Trick of crying [a Wolfe, a Wolfe] when there was no such Matter, and fooling the Country People with false Alarms. He had been at this Sport so many times in Jest, that they would not believe him at last he was in Earnest: And so the Wolves brake in upon the Flock, and worry’d the Sheep at Pleasure.
THE MORAL. He must be a very wise Man that knows the true Bonds, and Measures of fooling, with a respect to Time, Place, Matters, Persons, &c. But Religion, Business, and Cases of Consequence must be expected out of that sort of Liberty.

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.