Aesop's Fables: Townsend (1867)
207. The Seller of Images (Perry 99)
A CERTAIN MAN made a wooden image of Mercury and offered it for sale.
When no one appeared willing to buy it, in order to attract purchasers,
he cried out that he had the statue to sell of a benefactor who bestowed
wealth and helped to heap up riches. One of the bystanders said to him,
'My good fellow, why do you sell him, being such a one as you describe,
when you may yourself enjoy the good things he has to give?' 'Why,' he
replied, 'I am in need of immediate help, and he is wont to give his good
gifts very slowly.'
George Fyler Townsend's translation of the fables, first published in 1867, is
in the public domain and can be found at many websites, including Project
Illustrations come from: Aesop's Fables, by George Fyler Townsend, with
illustrations by Harrison Weir, 1867, at Google