Monday, November 22, 2010

L'Estrange: An Eagle and a Leveret.

An Eagle that was Sharp set, and upon the Wing, looking about her for her Prey, spy'd out a leveret, made a Stoop like Light'ning, and Truss'd it; and as she had it in the Foot, the Miserable Wretch Enter'd into an Idle Expostulation upon the Conscience, and Justice of the Proceeding: With what Honesty, says the Hare, Can you Invade the Right of another Body? Why, says the Eagle, To whom do you belong then? I belong to him, (says the Other) whom Heaven has made the Matter of all Living Creatures under the Sun, and from whom That Propriety cannot be taken without manifest Wrong and Usurpation. Man is My Master, and I know no other. Well, says the Eagle again in Wrath, And what's the Title now, that he pretends to this Propriety? Why 'tis the Excellency of his Reason, says the Hare, that Entitles him to this Sovereignty; which is a Claim that from the Creation of the World, to this Day, was never Subjected to the Question. In Truth, says the Eagle, You have advanc'd a very Pretty Invention here, insestting up Reason against Force, where the Cause is not to be Decided by Argument, but by Power: And to Convince ye now how much I am in the Right, You shall find, in despite of all other Pretensions, since I have ye under my Government and Law, that you were not Born for Him, but for Me.

Laws with Penalties are made for the Government of the Simple, and the Weak, like Cobwebs to Catch Flies; but Power is the Law of Laws, and there's no Disputing with it, but pon the Swords Point.

Source: L'Estrange 483.
(not in Mille) (not in Perry)

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