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So said, a ponderous trap he brought, And in the fact
Puss was caught.
The captive Cat, with piteous mews,
" What insolence! the Man reply'd; Shall Cats with us the
divide ? Were all your interloping band Extinguish'd, or expell’d the land, We Rat-catchers might raise our fees, Sole guardians of a nation's cheese !"
A Cat, who saw the lifted knife,
“ In every age and clime, we see,
F A BLE XXII.
THE GOAT WITHOUT A BEARD.
TIS certain that the modifh passions
the crowd like fashions.
A Goat (as. vain as Goat can be)
“ I hate my frowzy beard, he cries, 15
Resolv'd to smooth his shaggy face,
Rang'd cups, that in the window ftood,
25 Lin’d with red rags to look like blood; Did well his threefold trade explain, Who shav'd, drew teeth, and breath'd a vein.
The Goat he welcomes with an air, And seats him in his wooden chair:
30 Mouth, nose, and cheek, the father hides; Light, smooth, and swift, the razor glides.
“ I hope your custom, Sir, says Pug. Sure never face was half so smug !"
The Goat, impatient for applause, 35 Swift to the neighbouring hill withdraws. The shaggy people grinn'd and star'd.
Heigh-day! what's here without a beard ! Say, Brother, whence the dire disgrace? What envious hand hath robb'd your face ?” 40 When thus the fop, with smiles of fcorn, “ Are beards by civil nations worn ? Ev'n Muscovites have mow'd their chins. Shall we, like formal Capuchins, Stubborn in pride, retain the mode,
45 And bear about the hairy load ? Whene'er we through the village stray, Are we not mock'd along the way, Insulted with loud shouts of scorn, By boys our beards disgrac'd and torn?”
“ Were you no more with Goats to dwell, Brother, I grant you
reason well,” Replies a bearded Chief.
« Beside, If boys can mortify thy pride,
How wilt thou stand the ridicule
Coxcombs, distinguish'd from the rest,
F A BL E XXIII.
THE OLD WOMAN AND HER CATS.
WHO friendhip with a knave hath made,
Is judg'd a partner in the trade.
5 With one who cures a lover's spleen, We guess her not extremely nice, And only with to know her price. 'Tis thus that on the choice of friends Our good or evil name depends.
A wrinkled hag, of wicked fames:
15 While palsy shook her crazy
Teaz'd with their cries, her choler grew,
secret teat.” “ To hear you prate, would vex a faint; 35 Who hath most reason of complaint ?" Replies a Cat. “Let's come to proof. Had we ne'er starv'd beneath your roof, We had, like others of our race, In credit liv'd as beasts of chace.
40 'Tis infamy to serve a hag ; Cats are thought imps, her broom a nag; And boys against our lives combine, Because 'tis faid your Cats have nine,"