Actually, I just wanted to post another classic with this famous fable by Aesop but incidentally – I’m also keeping with the idea of posting a tale from a nation in the football world cup. As Greece played today, winning against Nigeria as well.
The Fox and the Grapes
One evening in autumn, a mouse and a sparrow sat beneath a grape-vine chatting about this and that. Suddenly, the sparrow chirped to his friend: “Hide yourself, the fox is coming!” And he himself quickly flew up into the vine’s foliage.The fox sneaked closer and closer to the grape-vine, his eyes longingly on the fat, blue, overripe grapes. Carefully he peeked into all direction. Then he pounced, put his fore-paws against the vine’s stem, stretched his body and tried to catch a few grapes with his mouth. Alas, they were hanging too high.
Somewhat angered, he tried his luck again. This time he took a giant leap but again he only caught empty air.
He tried a third time and he tried as hard as he could, jumping with all his might. Almost beside himself with greed, he snapped after the juicy grapes and stretched and stretched until fell down on his back. Not a single leaf had moved.
The sparrow who had silently observed the fox’s attempts until now, could no longer contain himself and chirped cheekily: “Mister fox, you have your sights set too high!”
The mouse peeked out from her hiding place and piped up: “Do not bother, you will never get the grapes.” And like an arrow she shot back into her mouse-hole.
The fox bit his teeth, turned up his nose and said loftily: “They are simply not ripe enough yet. I don’t like my grapes sour.” And with his head held high he pranced back into the forest.
Copyright for this fable’s translation: TaleTellerin
Copyright for image used: The Fox and the Grapes, from ”The Æsop for Children”,
Re-reading this fable, I’m wondering about hens and eggs. Because has this one become a classic because it successfully and entertainingly embodies the lesson about over-ambition and pride which is at the heart of Western societies. Or has this critical stance on ambition and pride become central because it has been advocated in central socio-cultural texts such as these? Huh.