The Hawk and the Nightingale

by Aesop

A NIGHTINGALE, sitting aloft upon an oak, was seen by a Hawk, who made a swoop down and seized him. The Nightingale earnestly besought the Hawk to let him go, saying that he was not big enough to satisfy the hunger of a Hawk who ought to pursue the larger birds. The Hawk said: I should indeed have lost my senses if I should let go food ready to my hand, for the sake of pursuing birds which are not yet even within sight.

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.


Aesop's Fables
Copyright 1881
Translator: unknown
WM. L. Allison, New York
Illustrator: Harrison Weir, John Tenniel, Ernest Griset,