LOC = Library Of Congress
The Aesop For Children
016. The Stag & His Reflection
1 A Stag, sipping water from a crystal-clear spring, noticed his reflection in the pristine surface. He admired the elegant curve of his antlers, and yet felt embarrassed by his slender legs.
2 He lamented, "Why must I endure such feeble legs when I am adorned with such a splendid crown?"
3 Just then, he detected the scent of a panther and swiftly darted through the woods. However, his broad antlers snagged on the tree branches, slowing him down until the panther caught up. It was then the Stag realized that the legs he disliked could have saved him if not for the cumbersome antlers.

                                                                       The moral is that we often value the decorative over the practical.
017. The Cock & the Fox
1. On a beautiful evening with the sun setting over a vibrant world, a wise old Cock flew up into a tree to roost for the night. Before settling in, he flapped his wings three times and crowed loudly. However, before he could tuck his head under his wing, he noticed a flash of red and a sharp nose below him—it was Master Fox.
2. The Fox called out with apparent joy and excitement, "Have you heard the wonderful news?"
3. The Cock, though outwardly calm, felt uneasy inside as he asked, "What news?" He knew well enough to be wary of the Fox.
4. With enthusiasm, the Fox proclaimed, "Your family, mine, and all other animals have decided to put aside their differences and live in peace and harmony forever. Imagine that! I am so eager to hug you! Come down, dear friend, let's celebrate this wonderful news together."
5. The Cock responded, "How marvelous! I'm truly thrilled to hear that," but his attention seemed to be elsewhere as he stretched his neck as if he saw something in the distance.
6. Noticing the Cock's distraction, the Fox asked nervously, "What is it that you see?"
7. The Cock replied, "It appears to me there are a couple of feral Dogs heading this way. Perhaps they are coming to celebrate the good news too."
8. Without waiting for another word, the Fox turned and ran as fast as he could.
9. The Cock called out, "Wait! Why do you run? The Dogs are now your friends!"
10. While running, the Fox shouted back, "Yes, but they might not know the news yet. Also, I just remembered an important errand I need to attend to."
11. Smiling to himself, the Cock nestled into his feathers and fell asleep, pleased with his cleverness in fooling the sly Fox.
                                                        The moral reflects that even the cleverest of tricksters can be fooled.
018. The Fox and the Goat
1. A Fox accidentally fell into a well which wasn't very deep, but he couldn't escape. After some time, a Goat, parched and looking for water, happened upon the well. Seeing the Fox, the Goat assumed he had descended to drink and inquired about the quality of the water.
2. The clever Fox seized the opportunity and praised the water extravagantly, encouraging the Goat, "It's the best water in the region; come on down and see for yourself. There’s plenty for us both."
3. Eagerly, the Goat leapt into the well to quench his thirst. Without hesitation, the Fox climbed onto the Goat’s back, jumped off his horns, and escaped the well.
4. Trapped inside, the Goat realized his grave mistake and pleaded with the Fox for help. However, the Fox was already making his way towards the forest.
5. As he departed, the Fox called back, "If you had as much wisdom as you have beard, old fellow, you would have thought of a way out before jumping in."
                                                                                Look before you leap

                                                      Always think ahead and consider the consequences before acting.
019. The Fox & the Leopard
1. A Fox and a Leopard, resting lazily after a generous dinner, amused themselves by debating about their good looks. The Leopard was very proud of his glossy, spotted coat and made derisive remarks about the Fox, whose appearance he declared was quite dull.
2. The Fox prided himself on his fine bushy tail with its white tip, but he was wise enough to see that he could not rival the Leopard in looks. Still, he kept up a flow of sarcastic talk, just to exercise his wits and to have the fun of disputing. The Leopard was about to lose his temper when the Fox got up stretching its body and yawning lazily.
3. "You may have a very smart coat," he said, "but you would be better off if you had a little more brain inside your head and less brawn on your ribs, the way I am. That's what I call real beauty."
                                                           A fine coat is not always an indication of an attractive mind.
020. The Frog & the Mouse
1. A house Mouse in search of adventure was running along the bank of a nearby pond wherein lived a Frog. When the Frog saw the Mouse, he swam to the bank and croaked:
2. "Won't you pay me a visit? I can promise you a good time if you do."
3. The Mouse did not need much coaxing, for he was very anxious to see the world and everything in it. But though he could swim a little, he did not dare risk going into the pond without some help.
4. The Frog had a plan. He tied the Mouse's leg to his own with a tough reed. Then into the pond he jumped, dragging his foolish companion with him. The Mouse soon had enough of it and wanted to return to shore; but the treacherous Frog had other plans. He pulled the Mouse down under the water and drowned him. But before he could untie the reed that bound him to the dead Mouse, a Hawk came sailing over the pond. Seeing the body of the . Mouse floating on the water, the Hawk swooped down, seized the Mouse, and carried it off, with the Frog dangling from its leg. Thus, at one swoop he had caught both the Frog and the Mouse for his dinner.
                                                                                                          Those who seek to harm others often come to harm themselves through their own deceit.
021. The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
1. A certain Wolf could not get enough to eat because of the watchfulness of the Shepherds. But one night he found a sheep skin that had been cast aside and forgotten. The next day, cloaked in the sheep skin, the Wolf strolled into the pasture with the Sheep. Soon a little Lamb was following him about and was quickly led away for slaughter.
2. That evening the Wolf entered the fold with the flock. But it happened that the Shepherd took a fancy for mutton broth that very evening, and, picking up a knife, went to the fold. There the first he laid hands on was the imposter and killed was the phony Wolf.
                                                                      The evil doer often comes to harm through his own deceit.
022. The Eagle & the Beetle
1. A Beetle once begged the Eagle to spare a Hare which had run to her for protection. But the Eagle pounced upon her prey, the sweep of her great wings tumbling the Beetle a dozen feet away. Furious at the disrespect shown her, the Beetle flew to the Eagle's nest and rolled out the eggs. Not one did she spare. The Eagle's grief and anger knew no bounds, but who had done the cruel deed she did not know.
2. Next year the Eagle built her nest far up on a mountain crag; but the Beetle found it and again destroyed the eggs. In despair the Eagle now implored great Jupiter to let her place her eggs in his lap. There none would dare harm them. But the Beetle buzzed about Jupiter's head, and made him rise to drive her away; and the eggs rolled from his lap.
3. Now the Beetle told the reason for her action, and Jupiter had to acknowledge the justice of her cause. And they say that ever after, while the Eagle's eggs lie in the nest in spring, the Beetle still sleeps in the ground. For so Jupiter commanded.
                                                                    Even the weakest may find means to avenge a wrong.
023. The Mother & the Wolf
1.  Early one morning a hungry Wolf was prowling around a cottage at the edge of a village, when he heard a child crying in the house. Then he heard the Mother's voice say:
2. "Hush, child, hush! Stop your crying, or I will give you to the Wolf!"
3. Surprised but delighted at the prospect of so delicious a meal, the Wolf settled down under an open window, expecting every moment to have the child handed out to him. But though the little one continued to fret, the Wolf waited all day in vain. Then, toward nightfall, he heard the Mother's voice again as she sat down near the window to sing and rock her baby to sleep.
4. "There, child, there! The Wolf shall not get you. No, no! Daddy is watching and Daddy will kill him if he should come near!"
5. Just then the Father came within sight of the home, and the Wolf was barely able to save himself from the Dogs by a clever bit of running.
                                                                                                Do not believe everything you hear.
024.The Hare & the Tortoise
1. A Hare was making fun of the Tortoise one day for being so slow.
2. "Do you ever get anywhere?" he asked with a mocking laugh.
3. "Yes," replied the Tortoise, "and I get there sooner than you think. I'll run you a race and prove it."
4. The Hare was much amused at the idea of running a race with the Tortoise, but for the fun of the thing he agreed. So the Fox, who had consented to act as judge, marked the distance and started the runners off.
5. The Hare was soon far out of sight, and to make the Tortoise feel very deeply how ridiculous it was for him to try a race with a Hare, he lay down beside the course to take a nap until the Tortoise should catch up.
6. The Tortoise meanwhile kept going slowly but steadily, and, after a time, passed the place where the Hare was sleeping. But the Hare slept on very peacefully; and when at last he did wake up, the Tortoise was near the goal. The Hare now ran his swiftest, but he could not overtake the Tortoise in time.
                                                                            The race is not always to the swift.