Nonfiction > Lionel Strachey, et al., eds. > The World’s Wit and Humor > Greek, Roman & Oriental
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The World’s Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes.  1906.
Vol. XV: Greek—Roman—Oriental
 
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By Sung Yu (4th Century B.C.)
 
THE EAGLE is king of the birds; among fishes
  Leviathan holds the first place.
Cleaving the far, crimson clouds,
  The eagle soars upward apace,
With only the blue sky above,        5
  Into remote realms of space;
But the grandeur of heaven and earth
  Is naught to the hedge-sparrow race.
The whale through one ocean swims,
  To take its course through a second;        10
While the minnow measures a puddle
  As the width of the sea might be reckoned.
And just as with birds and fishes,
  Is the case, to be sure, with man.
Here soars a resplendent eagle,        15
  There swims huge leviathan:
Behold the philosopher sapient,
  Whose fame will never grow dim;
Alone in the might of his wisdom—
  Can the rabble understand him?        20
 
 
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