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Aesop's Fables: Townsend (1867)

291. The Thieves and the Cock (Perry 122)

SOME THIEVES broke into a house and found nothing but a Cock, whom they stole, and got off as fast as they could. Upon arriving at home they prepared to kill the Cock, who thus pleaded for his life: 'Pray spare me; I am very serviceable to men. I wake them up in the night to their work.' 'That is the very reason why we must the more kill you,' they replied; 'for when you wake your neighbors, you entirely put an end to our business.'
The safeguards of virtue are hateful to those with evil intentions.

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 Gutenberg. Illustrations come from: Aesop's Fables, by George Fyler Townsend, with illustrations by Harrison Weir, 1867, at Google Books.