The Fox and the Cat - Aesop's Fables

A Fox was boasting to a Cat of its clever devices for escaping
its enemies. "I have a whole bag of tricks," he said, "which
contains a hundred ways of escaping my enemies."

"I have only one," said the Cat; "but I can generally manage
with that." Just at that moment they heard the cry of a pack of
hounds coming towards them, and the Cat immediately scampered up a
tree and hid herself in the boughs. "This is my plan," said the
Cat. "What are you going to do?" The Fox thought first of one
way, then of another, and while he was debating the hounds came
nearer and nearer, and at last the Fox in his confusion was caught
up by the hounds and soon killed by the huntsmen. The Cat, who
had been looking on, said:

"Better one safe way than a hundred on which
you cannot reckon."
oddddeok Feb 4, 2009

3 comments


Feb 17, 2009 Gin
1."and at last the Fox in his confusion was caught up".
Does "in his confusion" stand for a kind of state? can i change it into "the fox who is confusing was caught up"? are they equal?

2."Better one safe way than a hundred on which you cannot reckon."
is Better here a verb which equals to prefer??? if not,what does that mean?

And any mistakes about my expression?
Thanks`
Feb 18, 2009 oddddeok
1. You are right. "in his confusion" stands for a kind of state - "a state of confuion". Equally, you could say, "the confused fox was caught by the dogs" or " the fox who was confused was caught by the dogs".

2. "Better" is still an adjective here, it just misses a few words because it is an idiom. It can be expressed fully like this:

It is better to have one dependable way than a undependable hundred ways.
As an alternative, you could say "It is preferable..." with the same meaning.

I think you understood both these expressions well!
Feb 18, 2009 Gin
I got it``
Thank you for your explanations`` :)