The Kind Man and the Viper


A laboring man returning home one very cold day ran on a snake in the road. It was half dead with freezing. Taking pity on it he picked it up, put it in his bosom to warm it and brought it home, where he placed it close to the fire. When the heat had thawed out and brought the snake back to life it began to attack his little ones. Seeing this, the man whose pity had saved its life took up a spade and beat the snake to death. "If you return evil for good you may expect pity to come to an end," he said.