The Madman Who Sold Wisdom

by Aesop

A MADMAN once set himself up in the marketplace, and with loud cries announced that he would sell Wisdom. The people at once crowded about him, and some gave him gold for his wares, but they each got only a blow on the ear and a bunch of thread, and were well laughed at by their companions. One of them, however, took it more seriously than the others, and asked a wise sage what it meant. It means, said the sage, that if one would not be hurt by a Madman, he must put a bunch of thread over his ears. So the Madman was really selling Wisdom.


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