[Page 97][Page 100]
FABLE  XXIX.
The Fox at the point of death.
1 A Fox, in life's extream decay,
2 Weak, sick and faint, expiring lay;
3 All appetite had left his maw,
4 And age disarm'd his mumbling jaw.
5 His num'rous race around him stand
6 To learn their dying sire's command;[Page 98]
7 He rais'd his head with whining moan,
8 And thus was heard the feeble tone.
9 Ah sons, from evil ways depart,
10 My crimes lye heavy on my heart.
11 See, see, the murder'd geese appear!
12 Why are those bleeding turkeys there?
13 Why all around this cackling train,
14 Who haunt my ears for chicken slain?
15 The hungry foxes round them star'd,
16 And for the promis'd feast prepar'd.
17 Where, Sir, is all this dainty cheer?
18 Nor turkey, goose, nor hen is here:
19 These are the phantoms of your brain,
20 And your sons lick their lips in vain.
21 O gluttons, says the drooping sire;
22 Restrain inordinate desire;
23 Your liqu'rish taste you shall deplore,
24 When peace of conscience is no more.
25 Does not the hound betray our pace,
26 And gins and guns destroy our race?[Page 99]
27 Thieves dread the searching eye of power,
28 And never feel the quiet hour.
29 Old-age, (which few of us shall know)
30 Now puts a period to my woe.
31 Would you true happiness attain,
32 Let honesty your passions rein;
33 So live in credit and esteem,
34 And, the good-name you lost, redeem.
35 The counsel's good, a fox replies,
36 Could we perform what you advise.
37 Think, what our ancestors have done;
38 A line of thieves from son to son;
39 To us descends the long disgrace,
40 And infamy hath mark'd our race.
41 Though we, like harmless sheep, should feed,
42 Honest in thought, in word, and deed,
43 Whatever hen-roost is decreas'd,
44 We shall be thought to share the feast.
45 The change shall never be believ'd,
46 A lost good-name is ne'er retriev'd.
47 Nay then, replys the feeble Fox,
48 (But, hark! I hear a hen that clocks)
49 Go, but be mod'rate in your food;
50 A chicken too might do me good.
About this text
Author: John Gay
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Gay, John, 1685-1732. FABLES. By Mr. GAY. London: Printed for J. Tonson and J. Watts, MDCCXXVII., 1727, pp. 97-100. ,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  XX. The Old Hen and the Cock. ()
- 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  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. ()