The Peasant and The Apple Tree

A Peasant was cutting down an apple tree despite pleas from animals living in it. He stopped when he found a hive with honey. Tree now doing fine!

Self-interest alone moves some men.

Townsend VersionTownsend version

A peasant had in his garden an Apple-Tree which bore no fruit but only served as a harbor for the sparrows and grasshoppers. He resolved to cut it down, and taking his axe in his hand, made a bold stroke at its roots. The grasshoppers and sparrows entreated him not to cut down the tree that sheltered them, but to spare it, and they would sing to him and lighten his labors. He paid no attention to their request, but gave the tree a second and a third blow with his axe. When he reached the hollow of the tree, he found a hive full of honey. Having tasted the honeycomb, he threw down his axe, and looking on the tree as sacred, took great care of it.


Self-interest alone moves some men.

1001Cicadae et Passerculi

Arbor erat in rustici agro, fructum non ferens, sed passerculis solum et cicadis refugium praebebat. Rusticus itaque ut infructiferam caedere voluit; quapropter sumpta securi ictum intulit. Tum cicadae et passerculi, refugium ne excideret suum orabant et “Abstine, quaeso,” aiebant, “ut in hac arbore canere et te, rustice, delectare possimus.” At ille nihil curans, secundum ac tertium intulit vulnus. Ut vero arborem cavavit, apum examen una cum melle reperit. Quo gustato, securim abiecit arboremque ut sacram coluit et curavit.

Perry #299