Aesop's Fables, translated by Laura Gibbs (2002)
446. THE OXEN AND THE BUTCHER
Perry 290 (Babrius
There were once some oxen who had decided to destroy all the butchers
since their very profession was hostile to oxen. They banded together
and sharpened their horns in preparation for the coming battle. Among
them was a very elderly ox who had plowed a great deal of earth in his
day. This ox said to the others, 'The butchers slaughter us with experienced
hands and they kill us without unnecessary torment, but if we fall into
the hands of men who lack this skill, then we will die twice over -- and
there will always be someone to slaughter us, even if we get rid of the
Note: An epimythium probably added by a
later editor reads: 'Someone who is eager to flee a present danger
should take care or else he will find himself in even worse straits.'
Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura
Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.