Aesop's Fables, translated by Laura Gibbs (2002)
113. THE FOX AND THE GOAT IN THE WELL
Perry 9 (Phaedrus
As soon as someone clever gets into trouble, he tries to find a way
out at someone else's expense.
A fox had unwittingly fallen down a well and found herself trapped inside
its high walls. Meanwhile, a thirsty goat had made his way to that same
place and asked the fox whether the water was fresh and plentiful. The
fox set about laying her trap. 'Come down, my friend,' said the fox. 'The
water is so good that I cannot get enough of it myself!' The bearded billy-goat
lowered himself into the well, whereupon that little vixen leaped up on
his lofty horns and emerged from the hole, leaving the goat stuck inside
the watery prison.
Note: Caxton (6.3) provides a delightful
rebuke of the goat by the fox: 'And thenne the foxe beganne to lawhe
and to scorne hym / and sayd to hym / O mayster goote / yf thow haddest
be wel wyse with thy fayre berde / or euer thow haddest entryd in to
the welle / thow sholdest fyrst haue taken hede / how thow sholdest
haue comen oute of hit ageyne.'
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.