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kiss."—Here a dog, who was in the assembly and had been brought up under a good master, began to growl, and could hardly keep himself from falling upon Mr. Reynard ; but knowing it was not permitted, he remained quiet till his own turn should come. “ I deny," continued the fox, “ that there is any such thing as property. He that breeds poultry has no more right to the profit of them on that consideration than I have : and he that plants a vine has no right to the grapes, if I can get at them before they are gathered. The lord of the manor may think to preserve his gaine ; but I take rabbits, hares and pheasants without asking his leave, and carry them to my cubs, who are brought up to the same way of getting their livelihood. I tell them, as soon as they can understand, that there is but one great blessing in life, which is liberty, and I mean a fox's liberty ; that they had better not exist than be deprived of it; that it is inherent in foxes, and inalienable ; that it is absolute slavery to be deprived of it ; and accordingly, that the alternative to all foxes is, either to be free, or bound with a chain ; there is no medium. Foxes therefore maintain, that all creatures are born free and equal; and I make it out thus : they are either born free
- and equal, or they are born slaves ; but they are
not born slaves (for what fox was ever born with a chain on ?), therefore they are born free and equal. There is indeed no such thing as slavery in the world ; the very sound of it makes my blood run cold. I never made a slave, not even of a goose; I love to see them free upon a common, or cackling upon the sea-shore, better than in a farmer's yard ; where the barking of a great dog, in the night when I go my rounds, is a detestable noise ; and the keeping of dogs is a wicked invention, a base encroachment upon common rights. The dog is a sycophant, who neither eats geese himself, nor will permit me to do it. I love a wild dog, and I am a sort of dog myself ; but your meanspirited rascals, that confine themselves to a yard, are my aversion.”—Here the lion observed, that the fox was ingenious and entertaining ; but, as rights were common, other beasts would expect their turn, so he ordered. the jackall to speak.
“ As for me,” says the jackall, “ I am ready to obey your Majesty's command ; but I have no opinion of my own; I reconimend myself at court, by falling into the opinions of the time, and of those persons who may be sup
posed to know more than I do. I have' but little force, and not so much policy as my brother, the fox. I believe that the lion has royalty by birth and inheritance, if it is the fashion to believe it'; or, that there is no true scheme of government but that of the fox, founded on liberty and equality; and that the lion has no real and sensible friends but those that derive his power from rats and other beasts, even the lowest of vermin. To be plain, I believe nothing at all ; but I say something, because other beasts do. My object is to live in ease and plenty; and if I have the picking of such bones as your Majesty is pleased to leave half eaten, it is all I desire ; and you will find me on all occasions obsequious to your will.”—“ We shall not learn much from you,” said the lion ; “ bid the ox come forward.” .“ Your Majesty,” said the Ox, “has heard many sentiments, subtle and ingenious, on power, liberty, and right; things about which I never gave myself any trouble. Of power I have none; of liberty I desire none; and as to right, I hold that there is no right but from justice, labour, and honesty. I am content to work; my neck was inade for the yoke ; I am well defended from the weather ; and I fare bet..
ter at the rack and in the pasture, than if Í were to provide for myself by any wits of my own. My life would be insupportable to a tyger ; but it is nothing to me, because I have an easy, patient temper, which finds no faults, and is not galled and fretted, as the spirit of a wild beast would be with my work. Happiness and misery arc chiefly in the mind : it is no mortification to me that I do not eat blood ; it is no confinement to me that I cannot prowl about like the wolf, nor spend my nights abroad in doing mischief to other creatures, like the fox. When the labour of the day is over, I return to my stall, with more pleasure than the tyger to his den with his paunch full of blood; I like hay and straw better; and I think I have a happier life on the whole in servitude than I should lead if I were wild on the plains, under continual dread from wolves and tygers. My station in the world is nearest to that of the farmer, who is one of the most useful members of society; and if he minds his business, and keeps himself sober, is like me free from ambition and corruption." " Honest friend,” said the lion, “ I admire thy simplicity and integrity; and if I were not a lion, I would choose to be an ox. But let us hear now what the swine has to say.” .
E « You cannot expect much from me,” said
the Hog, “who never studied any thing but E myself. I have but one maxim, Let us eat and
drink, for to-morrow we die. I aspire to nothing
being under a state of compulsion. I hate all e government, and am incapable of being under Dia direction. As soon as I' find which way they
are driving me, I go the other way; and if I o were to be harnessed, and put into a carriage, I They would save myself the trouble of drawing the
load, by pushing it backwards. I wish they the would plant a field with potatoes, and turn in för hogs to root them up at the present season ; it this would save the trouble of ploughing the land, prethodne and be a great improvement in modern agriculos ture. If there is an island, where the earth proet duces roots without tillage, and there are no inpotente habitants but swine, there would I live; it mething would be a pig's paradise. So far as I am ca
pable of thinking, I see no sense in any scheme mon but that of the fox, universal liberty and no d* property ; for it is my opinion that every place and is not is free if I can break into it, and that every chelsea thing I find there is my own if I can get it. I het i never did any work in my life but once, when VOL. XI. , ; VN