The Hen and the Fox

189. THE HEN AND THE FOX. A fox, having crept into an out-house, looked up and down, seeking what he might devour, and at last spied a hen sitting upon the uppermost perch, so high that he could by no means come at her. He then had recourse to his old stratagem, “Dear cousin,” says he, addressing himself to the hen, “how do you do! I heard that you were ill, and kept within; at which I was so concerned that I could not rest till I came to see you: pray, how is it with you now? Let me feel your pulse a little: indeed you do not look well at all.”
He was running on after this impudent, fulsome manner, when the hen answered him from the roost. "Truly, cousin Reynard, you are in the right on't, I never was in more pain in my life: I must beg your pardon for being so free as to tell you, that I see no company; and you must excuse me too for not coming down to you; for to say the truth, my condition is such, that I fear I should catch my death if I should do it.” [more info]

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