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The Morals of Aesop’s Fables
© 2003 Stephen D. Glass
All Rights Reserved.

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A bird in the hand is better than two in the bush.
A bribe in the hand shows mischief in the heart.
A false tale often betrays itself.
A fine appearance is a poor substitute for inward worth.
A humble life with peace and quiet is better than a splendid one with danger and risk.
A man is known by the company he keeps.
A villain may disguise himself, but he will not deceive the wise.
A willful beast must go his own way
A willful man will have his way to his own hurt.
A word in season is most precious.
Abstain and enjoy.
Acquaintance softens prejudices.
An act of kindness is a good investment.
Attempt not impossibilities.
Avoid a remedy that is worse than the disease.
Be on guard against men who can strike from a distance.
Be reasonable in your criticism.
Be sure that there are others worse off than yourself.
Beauty is only skin-deep.
Benefits bestowed upon the evil-disposed increase their means of injuring you.
Better a certain enemy than a doubtful friend.
Better poverty without care, than riches with.
Beware of flatterers.
Beware of hypocrites.
Beware of the counsel of the unfortunate.
Birds of a feather flock together.
Change of habit cannot alter Nature.
Children are not to be blamed for the faults of their parents.
Choose the lesser of two evils.
Clothes do not make the man.
Contentment with our lot is an element of happiness.
Counsel without help is useless.
Count the cost before you commit yourselves.
Do not attempt to hide things which cannot be hid.
Do not attempt too much at once.
Do not be in a hurry to change one evil for another.
Do not count your chickens before they are hatched.
Do not enter into danger for the profit of others.
Do not lay claim to a virtue you do not possess if you would keep the respect of your friends.
Do not try to do that which is not natural to you.
Do not waste your pity on a scamp.
Do nothing without a regard to the consequences.
Don't make much ado about nothing.
Equals make the best friends.
Even the wise must recognize their limits.
Every man for himself.
Every man should be content to mind his own business.
Every tale is not to be believed.
Everyone is more or less master of his own fate.
Evil companions bring more hurt than profit.
Evil tendencies are shown in early life.
Evil wishes, like chickens, come home to roost.
Example is more powerful than precept.
Faithful service should long be remembered.
False confidence often leads into danger.
Figures are not always facts.
Fine feather friends are not worth much.
Fine feathers do not make fine birds.
Force is not a remedy.
Harm hatch, harm catch.
Harm seek, harm find.
He is not to be trusted as a friend who mistreats his own family.
He is wise who is warned by the misfortunes of others.
He who despises a humble friend may be doing an ill turn to himself.
He who grasps at the shadow may lose the substance.
He who shares the danger ought to share the prize.
He who tries to please everybody pleases nobody.
Hypocritical speeches are easily seen through.
If men had all they wished, they would be often ruined.
If words suffice not, blows must follow.
In a change of government the poor change nothing beyond the name of their master.
In avoiding one evil, care must be taken not to fall into another.
In quarreling about the shadow we often lose the substance.
In serving the wicked, expect no reward, and be thankful if you escape injury for your pains.
It is a mean nature which affects to dislike that which it is unable to obtain. (Sour grapes)
It is absurd to ape our betters.
It is an aspect of all happiness to suppose that we deserve it.
It is better to bend than to break.
It is dangerous to speak the truth to tyrants.
It is easier to make a suggestion than to carry it out.
It is easy to kick a man that is down.
It is not always wise to take people at their word.
It is too late to prepare for danger when our enemies are upon us.
It is useless to expect our prayers to be heard if we do not strive as well as pray.
It matters little if those who are inferior to us in merit should be like us in outside appearances.
It shows an evil disposition to take advantage of a friend in distress.
It sometimes happens that one man has all the toil, and another all the profit.
Kindness is better bestowed on the living than on the dead.
Lessons are not given, they are taken.
Let well alone.
Like will draw like.
Little liberties are great offenses.
Live and let live.
Look before you leap.
Man is what he believes.
Men argue. Nature acts.
Men may be ruined by attempting to appear that which Nature has not intended them to be.
Men of evil reputation, when they perform a good deed, fail to get credit for it.
Men often bear little grievances with less courage than they do large misfortunes.
Might makes right.
Misfortune tests the sincerity of friends.
Misfortune will surely befall him who loves unwisely.
Misfortunes springing from ourselves are the hardest to bear.
Misfortunes we bring upon ourselves are doubly bitter.

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