[Page 6]

FABLE [02] II.

The Spaniel and the Cameleon.

1 A Spaniel, bred with all the care
2 That waits upon a fav'rite heir,
3 Ne'er felt correction's rigid hand;
4 Indulg'd to disobey command,
5 In pamper'd ease his hours were spent;
6 He never knew what learning meant;
[Page 7]
7 Such forward airs, so pert, so smart,
8 Were sure to win his lady's heart,
9 Each little mischief gain'd him praise;
10 How pretty were his fawning ways!
11 The wind was south, the morning fair,
12 He ventures forth to take the air;
13 He ranges all the meadow round,
14 And rolls upon the softest ground;
15 When near him a Cameleon seen
16 Was scarce distinguish'd from the green.
17 Dear emblem of the flatt'ring host,
18 What live with clowns, a genius lost!
19 To citys and the court repair,
20 A fortune cannot fail thee there;
21 Preferment shall thy talents crown.
22 Believe me, friend; I know the town.
23 Sir, says the sycophant, like you,
24 Of old, politer life I knew;
25 Like you, a courtier born and bred,
26 Kings lean'd their ear to what I said,
[Page 8]
27 My whisper always met success,
28 The ladys prais'd me for address,
29 I knew to hit each courtier's passion,
30 And flatter'd ev'ry vice in fashion.
31 But Jove, who hates the lyar's ways,
32 At once cut short my prosp'rous days,
33 And, sentenc'd to retain my nature,
34 Transform'd me to this crawling creature;
35 Doom'd to a life obscure and mean,
36 I wander in the sylvan scene.
37 For Jove the heart alone regards,
38 He punishes what man rewards.
39 How diff'rent is thy case and mine!
40 With men at least you sup and dine,
41 While I, condemn'd to thinnest fare,
42 Like those I flatter'd, feed on air.


  • TEI/XML [chunk] (XML - 81K / ZIP - 9.0K) / ECPA schema (RNC - 357K / ZIP - 73K)
  • Plain text [excluding paratexts] (TXT - 1.5K / ZIP - 1.0K)

About this text

Title (in Source Edition): FABLE [02] II. The Spaniel and the Cameleon.
Author: John Gay
Themes: animals
Genres: fable

Text view / Document view

Source edition

Gay, John, 1685-1732. FABLES. By Mr. GAY. London: Printed for J. Tonson and J. Watts, MDCCXXVII., 1727, pp. 6-8. [14],173,[1]p.: ill.; 4°. (ESTC T13818)

Editorial principles

Typography, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation have been cautiously modernized. The source of the text is given and all significant editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. This ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 4.0.0.

Other works by John Gay