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Scottish Fairy and Folk Tales, by George Douglas, [1901], at


A MAN WAS one day walking along the road with a creel of herrings on his back, and two foxes saw him,

p. 97

and the one, who was the biggest, said to the other, "Stop thou here, and follow the man, and I will run round and pretend that I am dead." So he ran round, and stretched himself on the road. The man came on, and when he saw the fox, he was well pleased to find so fine a beast, and he picked him up, and threw him into the creel, and he walked on. But the fox threw the herrings out of the creel, and the other followed and picked them up; and when the creel was empty, the big fox leaped out and ran away, and that is how they got the herrings.

Well, they went on together till they came to a smith's house, and there was a horse tied at the door, and he had a golden shoe, and there was a name on it.

"I will go and read what is written on that shoe," said the big fox, and he went; but the horse lifted his foot, and struck a kick on him, and drove his brains out.

"Lad, lad," said the little fox, "no scholar me, nor wish I to be;" and, of course, he got the herrings.

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