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THE WASHERMAN’S JACKASS

[su_dropcap style=”flat” size=”4″]T[/su_dropcap]HERE once lived in Benares a Washerman named Carpurapataka, who kept an Ass and a Dog in his courtyard, the former tethered, and the latter running at large. One day the Washerman, who had been lately married, was spending the morning in the company of his wife, when a thief entered the house and began to carry out his valuables. Seeing what the thief was doing, the Ass was much disturbed.

“Friend Dog,” he said, “this is your business. Why do you not bark loudly and rouse our master?”

“Friend Ass,” replied the Dog, “leave me to guard this place in my own way. I can do it quite well if I choose. But the truth is that our master has felt so safe lately that he quite forgets me, and I no longer get regularly fed. Masters are all like that. And a little scare will help to make him remember me.”

“You wretched cur!” exclaimed the Ass, “what sort of a servant would stop for pay when there is work to be done?”

“You out-and-out Ass,” returned the Dog, “what sort of a master would grudge the pay after the work is done?”

“You are a mean-spirited beast,” retorted the Ass, “to neglect your duty. Well, I at least will do my best to warn him!”

So saying, the Ass put forth his very loudest braying. The Washerman, disturbed by the noise, hurried out, and missing the thief, who had taken flight, turned in a rage upon the Ass and beat it soundly with a cudgel.

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