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Contents > Author > Fable Aesop > The Lion, Jupiter, And The Elephant 620 BC- 560 BC
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Fable Aesop
The Lion, Jupiter, And The Elephant
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The Lion wearied Jupiter with his frequent complaints. "It is true,
O Jupiter!" he said, "that I am gigantic in strength, handsome in
shape, and powerful in attack. I have jaws well provided with
teeth, and feet furnished with claws, and I lord it over all the
beasts of the forest, and what a disgrace it is, that being such
as I am, I should be frightened by the crowing of a cock."

Jupiter replied, "Why do you blame me without a cause? I have
given you all the attributes which I possess myself, and your
courage never fails you except in this one instance."

On hearing this the Lion groaned and lamented very much and,
reproaching himself with his cowardice, wished that he might die.
As these thoughts passed through his mind, he met an Elephant
and came close to hold a conversation with him. After a time he
observed that the Elephant shook his ears very often, and he
inquired what was the matter and why his ears moved with such
a tremor every now and then.

Just at that moment a Gnat settled on the head of the Elephant,
and he replied, "Do you see that little buzzing insect? If it enters
my ear, my fate is sealed. I should die presently."

The Lion said, "Well, since so huge a beast is afraid of a tiny gnat,
I will no more complain, nor wish myself dead. I find myself, even
as I am, better off than the Elephant."

(Translated by George Fyler Townsend, 1814-1900)

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