Three Persian Fables

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1970
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Book, Whole
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This is a book into which some care has gone. It is landscape-formatted with a repeating print on its cover, perhaps showing a royal scene with servants, vines, lotus blossoms, and a story-teller. A new young king meets his court, including the one he takes for useless, the story-teller. The Three Fish represent the standard story, with two nice touches I have not noticed before. One is that the third fish cries. But the tears of fish are invisible in water. The young king says that each of us can see himself in one of those three fishes, but the story-teller objects that the third fish at least saw her own folly, but many people neither see it nor realize it, like the goose in the second fable. This is the goose who mistakes the moon's reflection for a fish three times and, because of her mistake, never fishes again, so as not to be deceived again. The third story is of the pigeons who do not listen to the warning raven the first time, and so are captured in the net. They do listen the second time, when he counsels them to fly up all together and carry the net away to his friend the mouse. The pasted-in illustrations are lavish but not necessarily narrative. The three fish of different colors and textures are striking. The papers used here have lovely textures. This book has spent a long time in a musty place.
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