Abstemius's Fables (Sir Roger L'Estrange)
345. (Abstemius 94) A Gnat and a Bee.
A Gnat that was half Starv'd with Cold and Hunger, went out on Frosty Morning to a Bee-Hive, to beg a Charity; and offer'd to Teach Musick in the Bee's Family, for her Diet and Lodging. The Bee very civilly desir'd to be excus'd: For, says she, I bring up all my Children to my own Trade, that they may be able to get their Living another Day by their Industry.
Lazy Beggars that can work and will not, have scarce a Right to Common Charity: And this Misery befalls them for want of an Industrious Education.
Fables of Aesop and Other Eminent Mythologists: Abstemius's Fables by Sir Roger L'Estrange. Available online at Google Books.