The Fox in the Well

166. THE FOX IN THE WELL. A fox, having fallen into a well, made a shift, by sticking his claws into the sides, to keep his head above water. Soon after, a wolf came and peeped over the brink, to whom the fox applied himself very earnestly for assistance, entreating that he would help him to a rope, or something of that kind which might favour his escape.
The wolf, moved with compassion at his misfortune, could not forbear expressing his concern: “Ah! poor Reynard,” says he, “I am sorry for you with all my heart: how could you possibly come into this melancholy condition?”
“Nay, prithee, friend,” replies the fox, “if you wish me well, do not stand pitying of me, but lend me some succour as far as you can: for pity is but cold comfort when one is up to the chin in water, and within a hair's breadth of starving or drowning.” [more info]

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