Mercury and The Carpenter

A workman lost an axe. Mercury recovered a gold and silver axe which the workman refused. Mercury then recovered the real axe and gave him the others. Truth is the better strategy.

Mercury and The Sculptor

Mercury visited a Sculptor to see how he was valued. Asking about other statues for value he then asked about his image. Sculptor gave it little value. Don’t overvalue yourself.

Jupiter’s Lottery

Jupiter set up a lottery with Wisdom as prize. Minerva won but people were mad that Jupiter’s daughter won. Jupiter substituted Folly and people were happy. The greatest fools have always looked upon themselves as the wisest men.

The Crow and Mercury

A Crow was caught but released by Apollo on promise of an offering. The offering was never made so when the Crow as again captured no other god helped. Lie once and you may not be believed later.

Mercury and A Traveller

A Traveler bargained safe passage with Mercury for half of any findings. He found nuts and dates and ate both leaving pits and shells for Mercury. Peoples’ actions toward the gods differ from their words.

Mercury and Tiresias

Mercury wanted to test Tiresias; he stole some of Tiresias’ oxen and then went to him in human form. Tiresias predicted Mercury could help recover the oxen. Vanity lives with fortune-tellers.

Jupiter and Fraud

Jupiter had a potion of fraud and hypocrisy made but too much was made and the unused part went to tailors. There’s knavery in all trades; most in tailors. It is natural to be a knave; men must rise above.

The Seller of Images

A seller had an image of Mercury and claimed it gave riches. When asked why he was selling he said he needed riches now and not later when the image worked. When you lie, you often have to expand the lie.

The Man and The Wooden God

A Man prayed to a wooden God to no avail. One day he threw the idol so hard it broke and inside he found coins. Strange way to answer prayers. People expect religion to give them profit.

The Philosopher, The Ants, and Mercury

A Philosopher saw a shipwreck. While musing on the fate of the vessel a swarm of Ants approach and one bit him. He stomped on them all. Hypocrite. Act as you profess to believe.