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Perry's Index to the Aesopica

Fables exist in many versions; here is one version in English:


A poor man had taken ill and was in very bad shape. When the doctors had given up hope, since he didn't have anything he could pay with, the man called upon the gods and vowed 'O you great and radiant divinities, if you restore my health, I will bring a hundred oxen to you as a sacrifice.' His wife then asked him, 'Where are you going to get a hundred oxen from, if you get well?' The man said to her, 'And do you suppose I am going to ever get out of this bed so that the gods will be able to demand payment?'
The story shows that people are often quick to make promises, but they do not really expect to have to fulfill them.

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.

Perry 34: Gibbs (Oxford) 478 [English]
Perry 34: Chambry 46 [Greek]

You can find a compilation of Perry's index to the Aesopica in the gigantic appendix to his edition of Babrius and Phaedrus for the Loeb Classical Library (Harvard University Press: Cambridge, 1965). This book is an absolute must for anyone interested in the Aesopic fable tradition. Invaluable.