Perry's Index to the Aesopica
Fables exist in many versions; here is one version in English:
THE DONKEY, THE
HORSE AND THE BARLEY
A donkey asked a horse to give him a nibble of barley. The horse replied, 'If
only I could, I would do so gladly! Indeed, I would give you a great deal of
barley, since I am a noble and generous character. When we return to the stable
together this evening, I promise to give you an entire sack of grain.' The donkey
then said to the horse, 'If you refuse to do me even this small favour now,
why should I expect a still bigger favour in the future?'
For people who make big promises while refusing even small requests: they
are quick to promise but reluctant to give.
Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura
Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.
Perry 571: Gibbs (Oxford) 114 [English]
Perry 571: Townsend 270 [English]
Perry 571: Ademar 58 [Latin]
You can find a compilation of Perry's index to the Aesopica in the gigantic appendix to his
edition of Babrius and Phaedrus for the Loeb Classical Library
(Harvard University Press: Cambridge, 1965). This book is an absolute must for anyone interested
in the Aesopic fable tradition. Invaluable.