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


Pray, Sir, how d'ye find yourself? Says the Dr. to his patient. Why truly, says the Patient, I have had a violent Sweat; oh the best Sign in the World, quoth the Dr. And then a little while after he is at it again, with a pray how d'ye find your Body? Alas, says t'other, I have just now had such a terrible Fit of horror and shaking upon me! Why this is all as it should be, says the Physician, it shews a mighty Strength of Nature. And then he comes over him a third time with the same Question again; why I am all swell'd, says t'other, as if I had a Dropsy; best of all, quoth the Doctor, and goes his way. Soon after this, comes one of the sick Man's Friends to him with the same Question, how he felt himself; why truly so well, says he, that I am e'en ready to die, of I know not how many good Signs and Tokens.
THE MORAL. A death-bed Flattery is the worst of Treacheries.

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.