Gateway to the Classics: Indian Fables by Ramaswami Raju
Indian Fables by  Ramaswami Raju

The Tiger, the Wolf, and the Fox

A wolf was often cheated of his prey by a fox; so he thought the best way of getting rid of his enemy would be to carry tales against him to the tiger, who was the king of the forest.

So one fine morning he went to the lair of the king, and said, "Good morning, your majesty."

"What news, my good fellow?" said the king.

"Ah, I have such news," said the wolf, "as would only increase your anger against that reckless villain Reynard; but, as he is my friend, I think it better to keep it from my sovereign."

This only made the tiger more eager to know what the wolf had to say. He therefore commanded him to disclose all that Reynard had done.

Quoth the wolf, "Yesterday there was a meeting of all the animals in the forest, to confer as to the best method of expressing their gratitude for all the blessings they have received from your majesty. I was anxious to know if there was any among them that had ill-feelings towards my sovereign. So I began by pretending to speak ill of your majesty to Reynard. He instantly replied, 'Oh, I quite agree with you! There is no greater tyrant than our present king. The sooner he is got rid of, the better.' I should have laid the matter at once before your majesty; but, as it was late in the night, I could not do so."


The Tiger, the Bear, and the Fox

The tiger raged with fury; and sending for Reynard then and there, said, "Villain, did you speak ill of us?"

"I did, your majesty," said the fox.

"Why?" said the tiger, in a thundering voice.

"Because," said the fox, in tones equally loud and furious, pointing to the wolf, "that villain there began to slander the character of my benign sovereign, and I was eager, come what would, to find out what the depth of his malice was!"

The tiger was astonished to see the tables thus turned upon the wolf. He was further at a loss to know who the culprit really was. So he sent them away, with the remark, " 'Tis a villain that cheats a villain best!"

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