Friday 26 April 2013

'The Ass Eating Thistles'

'The Ass Eating Thistles', an illustration by JVL in Aesop's Fables, Jonathan Cape, 1989, page 64.

The Ass Eating Thistles
AN Ass, loaded with provisions, meeting with some Thistles, began to devour them with much greediness. In the midst of his coarse repast he said thus: "The provisions I carry cannot seem more exquisite to delicate palates, or more agreeable to their appetite, than this harsh thistle is to me".
Moral: One person’s meat is another person’s poison.

Text: Charles Draper (page 116, 1760).
Selected parallels: Babrius 133. Chambry 280. Perry 360.

The Babrius and Chambry versions of the fable are told slightly differently; something like this:

Whilst an ass was eating a prickly plant a fox sidled up to him and said, "I am amazed that you can chew so cheerfully upon such rough and prickly food with that soft tongue of yours".

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