The Ox and the Rat

7.23. De bove et mure
Caxton: Of the oxe and of the rat
The lordes ought to loue theyr subgettis / For he whiche is hated of his tenaunts and subgets / is not lord of his land / as hit appereth by this Fable / Of an oxe / whiche somtyme was within a stable / and as the oxe on a tyme wold haue slepte fayne / a rat came / whiche bote the oxe by the thyes / And as the oxe wold haue smyten hym / he ran awaye in to his hole / And thenne the oxe beganne to menace the rat / And the ratte sayd to hym / I am not aferd of the For al be hit that I am lytyl / I may lette and empeche the / And yf thow arte grete / thy parentes ben cause therof and not thy self /
And therfore the stronge ought not to dyspreyse the feble / but ought to loue hym as the chyef or hede ought to loue his lymmes / For he that loueth not / oughte not to be loued / And therfore the lord must loue his subgettys / yf of them he wylle be loued
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