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Αἴσωπος] On Aesop, see Müller, Hist. Gr. Lit. c. XI 16.

‘And Aesop in Samos as advocate for a demagogue on his trial for a capital offence, said that a fox in crossing a river was driven into a cleft or chasm (in the bank); being unable to get out, she suffered for a long time, and many dog-ticks fastened upon her. And a hedgehog, in his wanderings, when he saw her, took compassion upon her, and asked her, if he should (was to, optative) remove the dog-ticks from her. But she would not allow it. And upon his asking her why, she replied, because these are already satiated with me and suck (draw) little blood; but if you remove these, others will come, hungry, and drain me of all the blood that is left. But you too, men of Samos, he continued, this one will do you no more harm, for he has got rich; but if you put him to death, others will come who are poor, and they will waste all your public property by their thefts.’

This fable is referred to also by Plutarch, An seni gerenda respublica p. 790 C, μὲν γὰρ Αἰσώπειος ἀλώπηξ τὸν ἐχῖνον οὐκ εἴα τοὺς κρότωνας αὐτῆς ἀφελεῖν βουλόμενον, ἂν γὰρ τούτους, ἔφη, μεστοὺς ἀπαλλάξῃς ἕτεροι προσίασι πεινῶντες. Victorius.

εἰς φάραγγα] φάραγξ has two senses, ‘a cliff’, as Alcm. Fragm. 44 (Bergk), εὕδουσιν ὀρέων κορυφαί τε καὶ φάραγγες; and ‘a chasm’ or ‘cleft’, which it bears here. A fox in attempting to cross a rapid river has been carried down by the torrent, and lodged in a rent or chasm of the precipitous bank, and is there caught as it were in a trap, prevented from getting out by the rapidity of the stream in front. This sense of φάραγξ is illustrated by Thuc. II 76, bis, where it is used of the pits or clefts in the rocks into which the Athenians threw the bodies of the Spartan ambassadors who had been betrayed into their hands and then murdered, the Lacedaemonians having previously treated Athenian prisoners in the same manner, ἀπέκτειναν πάντας καὶ ἐς φάραγγας ἐνέβαλον. Eur. Troad. 448, φάραγγες ὕδατι χειμάῤῥῳ ῥέουσαι, whether they are narrow clefts or ravines traversed by winter torrents. Arist. Equit. 248, of Cleon, φάραγγα (met. vorago, a chasm or abyss, which swallows up all the income of the state) καὶ χάρυβδιν ἁρπαγῆς. Xen. de Ven. v 16, Hares when pursued sometimes cross rivers, καὶ καταδύονται εἰς φάραγγας “are swallowed up in their chasms or abysses.”

Another of these political ‘fables’, of Antisthenes (Socraticus), is referred to by Ar., Pol. III 13, 1284 a 15. Speaking of the folly of attempting to control by legislation the born rulers, who, one or more, excel all the rest of the citizens together in virtue, and are like Gods amongst men, he adds, “they would very likely reply if the attempt were made, ἅπερ Ἀντισθένης ἔφη τοὺς λέοντας δημηγορούντων τῶν δασυπόδων (hares) καὶ τὸ ἴσον ἀξιούντων πάντας ἔχειν.”

κυνοραϊσταί, ‘dog-ticks’. These canine-tormentors are as old as Homer. Argus, Ulysses' dog, in his old age was covered with them: ἔνθα κύων κεῖτ᾽ Ἄργος ἐνίπλειος κυνοραιστέων. Od. ρ́ (XVII) 300.

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