The Price of Envy

This tale comes from A Treasury of Jewish Folklore, by Nathan Ausubel, ED., 1948

I know nothing at all on this subject Jewish Folklore, and only came across it the other day in a book. But if I chose I could study and increase my knowledge and understanding of it. Take from this story what you will:

While a poor woman stood in the market-place selling cheeses, a cat came along and carried off a chese. a dog saw the pilferer and tried to take the cheese way from him. The cat stood up to the dog. So they pitched into each other. The dog barked and snapped; the cat spat and scratched, but they could bring the battle to no decision. “Lets go to the fox and have him referee the matter,” the cat finally suggested. “Agreed” said the dog. So the went to the fox. The fox listened to their arguments with a judicious air. “Foolish animals,” he chided to them, “why carry on like that? If both of you are wiling, I’ll divide the cheese in two and you’ll both be satisfied.” “Agreed,” said the cat and the dog. So the fox took out his knife and cut the cheese in two, but, instead of cutting it lengthwise, he cut it in the width. “My half is smaller!” protested the dog. The fox looked judiciously through his spectacles at the dog’s share. “You’re right, quite right!” he decided. So he went and bit off a piece of the cats share. “That will make it even!” he said. When the cat saw what the fox did she began to yowl: “Just look!” my parts smaller now!” The fox again put on his spectacles and looked judiciously at the cats share. “Right you are!” said the fox. “Just a moment, and I’ll make it right.” And he went and bit off a piece from the dog’s cheese. This went on so long, with the nibbling first at the dog’s and then at the cat’s share, that he finally ate up the whole cheese before their eyes.

Just to add a note here at the end. Be grateful for what you have, the cheese of this tale. Otherwise you may end up with none! In tomorrows blog I will be posting for those of you who are interested in their star signs or horoscopes. With the plan eventually to do a piece on each of the signs in turn.



Filed under philosophy

2 responses to “The Price of Envy

  1. Alex Jones

    Another point is to go to court to settle a dispute, and the lawyers take all the “cheese”.


  2. Very nice. Anyone who has ever had something settled in court could relate to this.


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