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

Perry 573 (Ademar 65)

In the house of a certain farmer there lived a snake who regularly came to the table and was fed on scraps of food. Not long afterwards the farmer grew rich, but then he became angry at the snake and tried to attack him with an axe. The farmer then lost his wealth and he realized that he had prospered because of the good luck he had gained from the snake before having wounded him. The farmer then begged the snake to forgive him for his evil deed, and the snake replied, 'You are sorry for what you have done, but you must not expect me to be your faithful friend until this scar heals. It is not possible for me to be truly reconciled to you until all thought of that treacherous axe has left my mind.'
The person who injures anyone at any time must be treated with suspicion, which is a serious obstacle to the restoration of affection among friends.

Note: For a more elaborate version of this same story, see Fable 75 (following).

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.