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Fable Aesop
The Owl And The Birds
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An Owl, in her wisdom, counseled the Birds that when the acorn
first began to sprout, to pull it all up out of the ground and not
allow it to grow. She said acorns would produce mistletoe, from
which an irremediable poison, the bird- lime, would be extracted
and by which they would be captured. The Owl next advised them
to pluck up the seed of the flax, which men had sown, as it was a
plant which boded no good to them. And, lastly, the Owl, seeing
an archer approach, predicted that this man, being on foot, would
contrive darts armed with feathers which would fly faster than the
wings of the Birds themselves. The Birds gave no credence to these
warning words, but considered the Owl to be beside herself and
said that she was mad. But afterwards, finding her words were true,
they wondered at her knowledge and deemed her to be the wisest
of birds. Hence it is that when she appears they look to her as
knowing all things, while she no longer gives them advice, but in
solitude laments their past folly.

(Translated by George Fyler Townsend, 1814-1900)

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