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Aesop's Fables, translated by Laura Gibbs (2002)

Perry 297 (Babrius 26)

There were some cranes who came to nibble at a field which a farmer had recently sown with wheat. For a while the farmer was able to chase the cranes away by waving an empty sling to frighten them. Eventually the cranes realized that the swinging of the sling in the air did them no harm, so they ignored the farmer whenever he tried to chase them away. Finally the farmer abandoned his initial strategy and began throwing rocks at the cranes, crippling a good many of them. As the cranes abandoned the field they cried to one another, 'Let's run away to the land of the Pygmies! This man is no longer just trying to frighten us: he has actually started to do something about it!'

Note: The enmity between the cranes and the legendary 'Pygmies' was an ancient Greek legend (e.g. Homer, Iliad 3.1 ff.).

Source: Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura Gibbs. Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
NOTE: New cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.