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FABLE  XX.
The Old Hen and the Cock.
1 REstrain your child; you'll soon believe
2 The text, which says, we sprung from Eve.
3 As an old Hen led forth her train,
4 And seem'd to peck to show the grain;
5 She rak'd the chaff, she scratch'd the ground,
6 And glean'd the spacious yard around.
7 A giddy chick, to try her wings,
8 On the well's narrow margin springs,[Page 68]
9 And prone she drops. The mother's breast
10 All day with sorrow was possest.
11 A Cock she met; her son she knew,
12 And in her heart affection grew.
13 My son, says she, I grant your years
14 Have reach'd beyond a mother's cares;
15 I see you vig'rous, strong and bold,
16 I hear with joy your triumphs told;
17 'Tis not from cocks thy fate I dread:
18 But let thy ever-wary tread
19 Avoid yon well; that fatal place
20 Is sure perdition to our race.
21 Print this my counsel on thy breast;
22 To the just Gods I leave the rest.
23 He thank'd her care; yet day by day
24 His bosom burn'd to disobey,
25 And every time the well he saw
26 Scorn'd in his heart the foolish law;
27 Near and more near each day he drew,
28 And long'd to try the dang'rous view.
29 Why was this idle charge? he crys:
30 Let courage female fears despise.
31 Or did she doubt my heart was brave,
32 And therefore this injunction gave?
33 Or does her harvest store the place,
34 A treasure for her younger race?
35 And would she thus my search prevent?
36 I stand resolv'd, and dare th' event.
37 Thus said. He mounts the margin's round,
38 And prys into the depth profound.
39 He stretch'd his neck; and from below
40 With stretching neck advanc'd a foe;
41 With wrath his ruffled plumes he rears,
42 The foe with ruffled plumes appears;
43 Threat answer'd threat, his fury grew,
44 Headlong to meet the war he flew;
45 But when the watry death he found,
46 He thus lamented, as he drown'd.
47 I ne'er had been in this condition
48 But for my mother's prohibition.
About this text
Author: John Gay
Text view / Document view
Gay, John, 1685-1732. FABLES. By Mr. GAY. London: Printed for J. Tonson and J. Watts, MDCCXXVII., 1727, pp. 67-69. ,173,p.: ill.; 4°. (ESTC T13818)
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
- [FABLE ] INTRODUCTION TO THE FABLES. The Shepherd and the Philosopher. ()
- FABLE  I. The Lyon, the Tyger, and the Traveller. ()
- FABLE  II. The Spaniel and the Cameleon. ()
- FABLE  III. The Mother, the Nurse, and the Fairy. ()
- FABLE  IV. The Eagle, and the Assembly of Animals. ()
- FABLE  V. The Wild Boar and the Ram. ()
- FABLE  VI. The Miser and Plutus. ()
- FABLE  VII. The Lyon, the Fox, and the Geese. ()
- FABLE  VIII. The Lady and the Wasp. ()
- FABLE  IX. The Bull and the Mastiff. ()
- FABLE  X. The Elephant and the Bookseller. ()
- FABLE  XI. The Peacock, the Turkey, and Goose. ()
- FABLE  XII. Cupid, Hymen, and Plutus. ()
- FABLE  XIII. The tame Stag. ()
- FABLE  XIV. The Monkey who had seen the World. ()
- FABLE  XV. The Philosopher and the Pheasants. ()
- FABLE  XVI. The Pin and the Needle. ()
- FABLE  XVII. The Shepherd's Dog and the Wolf. ()
- FABLE  XVIII. The Painter who pleased No body and Every body. ()
- FABLE  XIX. The Lyon and the Cub. ()
- FABLE  XXI. The Rat-catcher and Cats. ()
- FABLE  XXII. The Goat without a beard. ()
- FABLE  XXIII. The Old Woman and her Cats. ()
- FABLE  XXIV. The Butterfly and the Snail. ()
- FABLE  XXV. The Scold and the Parrot. ()
- FABLE  XXVI. The Cur and the Mastiff. ()
- FABLE  XXVII. The Sick Man and the Angel. ()
- FABLE  XXVIII. The Persian, the Sun and the Cloud. ()
- FABLE  XXIX. The Fox at the point of death. ()
- FABLE  XXX. The Setting-dog and the Partridge. ()
- FABLE  XXXI. The Universal Apparition. ()
- FABLE  XXXII. The two Owls and the Sparrow. ()
- FABLE  XXXIII. The Courtier and Proteus. ()
- FABLE  XXXIV. The Mastiffs. ()
- FABLE  XXXV. The Barley-mow and the Dung-hill. ()
- FABLE  XXXVI. Pythagoras and the Countryman. ()
- FABLE  XXXVII. The Farmer's Wife and the Raven. ()
- FABLE  XXXVIII. The Turkey and the Ant. ()
- FABLE  XXXIX. The Father and Jupiter. ()
- FABLE  XL. The two Monkeys. ()
- FABLE  XLI. The Owl and the Farmer. ()
- FABLE  XLII. The Jugglers. ()
- FABLE  XLIII. The Council of Horses. ()
- FABLE  XLIV. The Hound and the Huntsman. ()
- FABLE  XLV. The Poet and the Rose. ()
- FABLE  XLVI. The Cur, the Horse, and the Shepherd's Dog. ()
- FABLE  XLVII. The Court of Death. ()
- FABLE  XLVIII. The Gardener and the Hog. ()
- FABLE  XLIX. The Man and the Flea. ()
- FABLE  L. The Hare and many Friends. ()