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Fables from Afar by  Catherine T. Bryce
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THE PARROT

A MAN once owned a fine green parrot. He taught the bird to say, "No doubt about it."

One night the man buried some money in different places in the village. Next morning he went through the village with his bird, saying: "My [20] parrot is wise. He will show me where to dig for money."

Whenever he came to a place where he had buried some money, he said, "O wise parrot, if I dig here, shall I find any gold?"

The parrot always looked very wise and said, "No doubt about it."

Then the man would dig up the money and show it to the people who stood around.

A young man, who had watched the parrot and his owner for some time, thought, "If I had that parrot, I should soon be rich."

So he said to the owner of the par- [21] rot, "For how much will you sell your parrot?"

"For one thousand pieces of gold!"

"That is a great deal of money!" cried the young man.

"But my parrot is worth it; are you not, O wise one?" said the man.

"No doubt about it," answered the parrot.

This answer pleased the young man so much that he paid the one thousand pieces of gold and walked off with the parrot.

He at once took the parrot out to look for money. Many times he asked him, "If I dig here, shall I find some gold?"

[22] Every time the parrot answered, "No doubt about it."

But though he dug and dug, he never found a single gold piece.


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At last he felt sure that the bird's [23] owner had cheated him. "O wise bird," he said, "I think I was a fool to give a thousand pieces of gold for you."

The parrot looked very wise and answered, "No doubt about it."

The parrot looked so funny as he said this that the young man laughed and laughed.

"Well," he said at last, "you told the truth that time, O wise one. After this I shall work. That is the only way to gain riches."

"No doubt about it," agreed the parrot, and for the second time he told the truth.


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