The Stag Looking into the Water

08. THE STAG LOOKING INTO THE WATER. A STAG, parched with thirst, came to a spring of water. As he was drinking, he saw his own reflection on the water and was in raptures with his horns when he observed their splendid size and shape, but was troubled about his legs; they seemed so thin and weak. As he was still musing, some huntsmen with a pack of hounds appeared and disturbed him, whereupon the Stag took to flight and, keeping a good distance ahead so long as the plain was free from trees, he was being saved, but when he came to a woody place, he got his horns entangled in the branches and, being unable to move, was seized by the hounds. When he was at the point of death, he said to himself, "What a fool am I, who was on the way to be saved by the very things which I thought would fail me, while by those in which I so much trusted I am brought to ruin." [more info]

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